Hey guys! 🙂
I know it has been some time since I have written anything here. The main reason being, I have reached a crossroads in which direction I would like to take Mental Break – In Progress.
Technically, I have had this blog for over two years now. The original premise was to create awareness about mental illness in order to combat the stigma associated with it and also to have an outlet and connect with others through something I have always loved and that is writing.
About eight months ago now, I went through some serious life changes and in the process I felt it necessary to delete my blog entirely. In hindsight, I wish I had given it some more thought before hitting the delete button. Two years of written work gone. Just like that!
After considering my actions, I decided no, I don’t truly want to give up my blog so I resurrected it and made an attempt to carry out the original blueprint but something changed…
The blog and it’s current format does not speak to me like it once did and therefore I have struggled to write on the topic of mental illness that once came so easily to me.
After much deliberation, I feel I now know the new direction I would like to take Mental Break – In Progress and although I am not looking to turn my back on the original concept, it’s time for that concept to align with where I am in my life today.
As mentioned earlier, about eight months ago my life changed, in the best way possible. On July 1st, 2016 I turned to God to help me for the first time since I was a child.
I was raised to believe in God and went to church from an early age. I said my prayers every night before bed and my father would read the Bible to me and my brothers every night after supper. This would go on until I was around ten years old when my parents ultimately divorced. You see, even though God was present in our home, so was the devil. My home life for much of my childhood was surrounded with mental illness and abuse.
My father was technically diagnosed with bipolar disorder but did not follow through with therapy or treatment. He did not believe that he needed it. My father was also abusive.
Before I go any further, I need to make it clear that I am not trying to say all people with a mental illness are abusive because that is simply not true. The abuse in my family’s case was primarily from my father, whose father and mother were abusive to him and most likely my grandparents parents were abusive to them and so on and so forth.
My mother also comes from a line of family abuse and found herself in a marriage with more abuse. Needless to say, this took a toll on my mother and did not bring out the best in her.
As I entered into adulthood, I would end up finding myself in abusive relationships and I would retaliate with abuse…not my finest hour to say the least but the biggest form of abuse I endured was self abuse.
My entire 20’s was spent in a downward spiral to nowhere and during that time, I lost my way with God. I turned my back on Him. I doubted the word of the Bible, that God was truly watching over me and I scoffed at Christians and organized religion assuming that every church going person, despite their choice of religion, was feeding into a fraudulent, flawed and political agenda.
Now in some cases, that is true and there has been more than one church over the course of time that fits that bill but there are also many that don’t but at that point I just lumped it all together.
Like I said, I turned away from God and I started to focus on things like astrology, tarot cards, numerology…New Age philosophy and the list goes on. I was extremely interested in those subjects and I practiced them. They were my new found spirituality yet at the pit of my gut, God still lingered (although He was a faint light at the time). The thought of a Higher Power still existed in my mind but I attempted to call it everything but God.
Needless to say, during this time, nothing in my life was going right and the self abuse continued to get worse and worse.
When I hit my 30th birthday, something started to change. Perhaps it goes along with starting a new decade of your life. When I turned 30, I cried and I am not entirely sure why. Perhaps it was because I was so far removed from where I thought I should be in life and really had no direction that is until I started this blog.
Oddly enough, being diagnosed with bipolar disorder is when I feel my life truly started to take shape. Many people use their mental illness as a crutch but for some reason, I felt liberated by the experience.
As I started receiving therapy and treatment, I started to notice something. I was changing in a positive way and the people I surrounded myself with were not.
Two years later I would call out to God to help me after finally having enough of the self abuse and the toxic environment I insisted on putting myself in over and over again. It turns out God was waiting for this moment because as soon as I called out to Him, my life changed more than it had in 32 years.
That same day, I left a six year relationship that was not serving either party well and I hopped a plane and moved back to my home town to be closer to my family who had recently in the last year moved back home as well. This would be the first time in nearly a decade that our entire family would be together in person and not spread over long distances and Facebook messaging.
I was prepared to live alone and find myself. I had jumped from relationship to relationship with mild success at best and I was tired of it. I wanted to find me and felt the only way to accomplish that was to avoid romantic relationships entirely.
God on the other hand had other plans for me. When I arrived home my brother introduced me to his friend “D”. D and I discovered we had lots in common and in a short amount of time we found ourselves in love and are currently engaged.
Now on paper it could be argued that I was about to repeat the same mistakes but because I had asked God for help, he not only helped me but blessed me with my soulmate and to be honest, I was beginning to think the idea of a soulmate was foolish and a bunch of fluff.
D and I were on a similar path when we met. We had experienced much of the same hardships in life and self abuse and we both were trying to rekindle our relationship with God and so we took each others hand and started that journey together.
Eight months ago, I would not have fathomed this was possible. I would have told you to save it for fairytales.
So why am I telling you all of this? What does this story have to do with my blog?
Well, it explains the new direction I want to take my blog and that is the direction of God. Just as medication and therapy treats mental illnesses, so too does the word of God. God knows we are suffering and He wants to help you. He didn’t have to help me after everything I had done (or not done for that matter) but He did.
God cannot help us if we do not ask but when we do ask – Wow! He responds in kind. You help yourself by admitting you need help and as soon as you do that, God is so excited to help you.
I want to continue down my new found path with God through this blog and it is my hope that not only can I spread the awareness of mental illness but also the spiritual awakening I am currently navigating. It’s not always going to be pretty. I will stumble and fall. We all do and it may feel like no one has your back but I am here to tell you, God does. You don’t have to agree and I can only speak for myself but I can’t hide anymore and I don’t want to. I want to explore my faith openly.
I hope you will join me on my journey and I look forward to seeing where Mental Break- In Progress 2.0 will take me. I plan to revamp the blog over time to reflect this new path I am on so if you would like, stay tuned for more updates. 🙂 ❤
Take Care & God Bless ❤