Personal Reflection 6/27/21
In my self help book, I talk about past suicide ideations and how surrendering saved me from it all. (My ultimate goal in life is suicide prevention). I talk about how mental health aftermath of shame is not something the mental health system truly prepares you for. I’ve decided to be completely open and real with my struggles and show people that I’m not perfect. I’m human.
When I talk about myself, it’s actually very cathartic. I feel like a light worker. I do soul work. That means I go through things, find answers and create something of meaning from it or help someone else. But in my YA book, my character Skye says something to the effect of just helping others is not enough to sustain you. I’ve been finding my bliss, pouring into my own cup first. All my writing is about surrendering in some form or another.
I’ve been a self help writer for a while now, and I mainly write for Forbes. Lifehack actually taught me how to write self help. But they chose the topics. I’m having a lot of fun choosing my own topics. My most popular one was about the vagus nerve.
I’m so excited for an empathy one out in August. :) My next is about the benefits of doing nothing July 1st.
I did some writing at Barnes and Nobles yesterday and pointed out to a couple strangers my article was in Bella Grace lol. I felt silly but I was proud of it.
I’ve been working on mindfulness and being here now. I know that I can’t solve every problem and that I need time just to be. I was in survival mode all my life but surrendering solved that for me.
I’ve been connecting the dots. Here are a few:
- I was discovered by a brand manager in my early twenties.
- I turned down brand manager’s advances.
- I had a branding internships where I started to self brand and used the brand manager situation as motivation to be unique and authentic.
- The name, Meekah, kept coming to me. She turned out to be a little girl I started to work with as a prek teacher. I turned her around. But I had the name Meekah (a unique name) in my head long before I ever saw the roster.
- I was in interior design and learned about colors and design in general. I chose scarlet for my brand logo and image. I learned how to design my image based on design itself. I also learned about the law of least effort by a coworker which changed my life. It was an aha! moment. “Oh I’ve been doing this my whole life.”
- I turned many kids around in life, taught workshops on leadership with Josie Badger (former Miss Wheelchair America) and found ways to help kids without being a high school teacher which was my original destination.
- When I was at Brandeis, I was student teaching at the top school in MA. I saw something bad. I saw that kids were burned out, pressured to be so much with a lack of balance, sacrificing their mental health, learning in a way but not how to critically think or be authentic etc. I had this moment where my cooperating teacher wasn’t there, and they were all surrounding me trying to get me to give them As rather than some Bs on an assignment and I saw the desperation as harmful to them. There is a lack of humanity at times in the system. And it’s only made for the neurotypical. As someone with ADD, I realized I wanted to be a high school English teacher to fix myself in some way or make myself normal and what I couldn’t be growing up. When I tried to help a student, my cooperating teacher told me to stick to English. I don’t have the words for why this situation wasn’t right for me, but sometimes you just have to follow your gut. I wouldn’t have later helped other kids that I helped if it weren’t for this experience and going on a detour.
- As someone with a mental illness, I got to see how the mental health system fails people. I am a bit new-agey with a mix of Christian and Buddhist beliefs. I would never push that on anyone, but I found reiki to really help me on top of medication. I realized that the boredom in the system can break you. I can’t tell you how many times I paced a hallway. There is also a lack of emotional support in general. I had a nice therapist, but she didn’t understand how hard it was to live that way. In fact it was so authoritarian I couldn’t be authentic. I needed stimulation. I needed more. I know I wasn’t the only one.
- In a long term structured residence, I turned to Cheryl Strayed’s Tiny Beautiful Things. It was powerful and what the system was lacking in helping others. I decided to write self help because of that and started putting together wisdom. I was their most productive patient. What they didn’t understand was pacing halls, watching endless amounts of TV, having cabin fever, not being able to connect with other residents due to their own issues and being lectured in “group lectures” each day didn’t fulfill me. I wanted to be raw and real with someone about the horrors I had been through. I wanted to be seen.
- In the end, I turned my life around. I became a writer. I used being on disability to my advantage. It took forever to find the right meds. But once I did, I started to look at what problems I had faced and overcome and how lucky I was to make it. I saw God in it all, even though it’s very hard to be a believer when you see the reality of mental illness. I still believe God has a plan for me.