2020: More Courage, Self-Control and Joy-June Edition

Have you ever asked God to move you? Well, this past month that is exactly what I asked God to do and he responded.

This month has certainly been filled with courage. On the 14th of June I applied for a job as a mental health blogger. I got an interview and they asked me to send in some samples. The company liked what they saw and asked for two more fresh off the press samples. I sent them in and waited. I did not hear back. Even though I did not get the job I knew that God had something better for me.  A week went by and in my email inbox I got a request from Perkins to come join their three-day career launch testing group. I was excited to do the job. Come to find out I was going to get paid! I learned a lot during the three-day program. I will sit down and write a separate blog post about this event. 😊

In addition to this I had my follow up appointment with my orthodontist. He wants me to continue to wear my retainers full time until July 15. Our goal is to see if my back tooth moves to its proper position. He says if my tooth does not move back into place, and I start having pain then we may have to remove it. I am following the orthodontist’s instructions. I feel that I am making progress, but it is going to take some time.

When it comes to self-control, I have been learning that the more I practice patience the calmer I become. I was having anxiety about reaching my savings goals. It feels like I will never get there. However, little by little I am getting there.

Lastly, when it comes to joy this month was packed full of surprises. I was able to go out with a friend of mine and go thrift shopping. God provided me with an amazing pair of shoes which I was praying for.

On top of this God has connected me with my mother’s family. I have connected with a 2nd cousin who is now my prayer partner and he wants me to succeed with my business. He told me over the phone that even though my business plan may be as big as an elephant keep going step by step. I will get there. He also pointed me to peace when I told him about my father’s side of the family. He told me I can pray for them, but it is up to God to change their hearts. However, it is up to them to act on the change that God has given them. He is right. I can not let the hurt of my father’s family get to me. I can only give it to God and let him do the work.

How was June for you? Let me know in the comments below.

Interview with Matt Tuckey (Guest Post #25)

Matt is a fellow blogger. Be sure to check him out on social media. Thank you, Matt for being a guest. 🙂 

  1. What is your name (or blog/channel name)? Hi! I’m Matt Tuckey and I write the blog Power is a State of Mind.
  2. Age? 37
  3. Who has inspired you the most in life? That’s a tough one! I read Quentin Tarantino’s Reservoir Dogs screenplay when I was 15, and thought, ‘this isn’t that complicated. I could do this.’ QT got me into writing fiction, and moved into non-fiction once I started blogging.
  4. Who has inspired you for your blog or YouTube channel? Hunter S Thompon’s ‘gonzo’ style of fast writing, resulting in contemporary accounts of events that have just happened, has been a big inspiration. I’m not necessarily as politically minded, but I try to capture his style and mix it in with my own.
  5. Besides writing or making YouTube videos what do you like to do in your spare time? I run nightlife events on a voluntary basis, using a website called Meetup. It’s a great way of meeting new people and seeing parts of a city that you ordinarily wouldn’t.
  6. Name a bad habit that you have? I doubt myself way too much. I’m single because of this.
  7. Name your best quality? Honesty. You might not like what I have to say, but I’ll never hurt anyone’s feelings.
  8. If you could interview anyone living or dead who would it be and why? Probably Sergio Leone, director of Once Upon a Time in America. He made the greatest film ever made, and I’d love to ask him about the film’s production. I’m a bit late though: he passed in ‘89.
  9. What is your college major/minor? I got a BSC Hons in Professional Broadcast Techniques. In the UK we don’t ‘major’ or ‘minor’ in anything, but my focus was on radio. I managed to get some experience with a couple of stations, as my voice was good, but it wasn’t to last.
  10. Why did you choose the title of your blog or YouTube Channel? I chose ‘Power is a State of Mind’ on a whim- I had a postcard advertising the 2004 Sean Penn movie ‘The Assassination of Richard Nixon.’ ‘Power is a State of Mind’ was the strapline. There was something about it that meant something to me, and at the time I was trying to get a diagnosis for some memory difficulties I had. I knew if I got help with that problem, I’d develop a lot more confidence. I eventually did, and I was right. As well as developing organisational techniques, I became a lot braver.
  11. When and why did you start your blog or YouTube channel? I started blogging on MySpace in late ‘06, but didn’t open PIAOM on Blogger until late ‘08. Prior to that I’d found myself getting into odd predicaments that needed documenting. It wasn’t fair to keep these stories to myself!
  12. Where do you see yourself in five years? I’m trying to move into Public Relations, where I’ll be able to put my promo / marketing / media background to use and I’ll hopefully get to write for a living too. I’ve volunteered at a PR agency recently and it convinced me that I need to move into that field.
  13. What is the name/cause of your visual impairment (or other disabilities that you may have)? Short Term Memory Difficulties.
  14. How does your visual impairment (or other disabilities that you may have) effect you on a daily basis? It has a number of effects on me, most of which people don’t see. I’m constantly on my phone, not necessarily scrolling social media (although I do that too), but my calendar and notes are on there, which store everything that I’d never otherwise remember. I forget people’s names, which people take great offense to. They usually don’t give me the time to explain my condition. That’s on them, though! It takes a while for me to get to know people personally, as they can tell me about themselves, and I’ll only remember bits of what they’ve said. Added to this, these difficulties come from a head injury at birth but I only got a proper assessment at 26 years old. Since then, I’ve continuously learned more organisational techniques.                   
  15. What do other people feel about your visual impairment (or other disability that you may have)? My systems and strategies are that tight now that people don’t even notice it… until I forget something important to them! The place where it’s taken into account most is work- I do my best but it’s really not the most appropriate role for me. I’ve got good colleagues and an understanding manager, but I’m working in admin, the processes for which I take AGES to learn.     
  16. If you had to give one piece of advice to others about having a visual impairment (or other disability that you may have What would that be? Keep records of everything. You will need it. Become a strong notetaker.
  17. Where can other people find you on social media? (Please list and provide the links.) I’m on Twitter at @matthewtuckey, Instagram at @matttuckey and YouTube at youtube.com/matthewtuckey.

How to support your loved one who has Body Dysmorphic Disorder

As you have read about my journey with my eating disorder and Body Dysmorphic Disorder you are probably wondering what you can do to help support a friend or loved one who may be struggling with this. Even though I am not a medical professional or therapist here are 5 tips that have helped me in my own journey.

  1. Encourage seeking proper medical and mental health care. Even though I am struggling with facing my fears of getting medical care I know all to well that medical and mental health care go hand in hand. It is important to be sure all providers be on the same page.
  2. Once a proper medical diagnosis is made, try to educate yourself on the disorder(s) your loved one has. This can help you understand what they are going through and what kind of options your loved one may have in terms of treatment.
  3. Make sure your loved one understands and follows their own care plan. Be aware that sometimes slipups can happen but remind them to get back on track so they can be healthier and happier. An example of this, was when I was trying the no white food diet. It was hard for me to stick to the diet because there were so many restrictions. I would cheat a lot. My family and friends were encouraging. They helped me get back on the diet. After giving it a fair chance though I found out the diet was not for me.
  4. Be careful what you post on social media! This is one of the tips that really touches my heart. Not only can words be hurtful, but images can too. Recently, someone in my family posted a photo of Miss Piggy with the words, “I have an eating disorder…I’m about to eat dis order of fries, dis order of wings & dis order of nuggets.” Someone you know, love and care about could be struggling with an eating disorder and they are working hard to get healthy again. Posts like this one can cause them to have a relapse. Instead of posting negative posts be positive and supportive. You never know who is going through a hard time.
  5. Encourage healthy eating and exercise. This tip has helped me a lot when it comes to my Body Dysmorphic Disorder. I find that exercising helps me have more energy and I feel a lot less depressed and anxious. When it comes to healthy eating, I find this also improves my mood and energy levels. Keeping a healthy weight has helped me not worry about what I look like.

Remember if you are working towards a healthier body image remember these three statements: You can do this. You are worth it. You deserve to be happy and healthy.

Leave a comment if you are supporting someone or if you are going through this.

 

Happy Nystagmus Awareness Day!

Nystagmus Awareness Day (2020)

Today is Nystagmus Awareness Day! Nystagmus is the eye condition that I was born with. If you have not heard of the condition know that it is a rare condition that affects, according to Nystagmus Network “1 in 1000 people have Nystagmus.”  Nystagmus is an eye condition where the eye constantly moves. This pattern can be in an a vertical, Horizontal, or circular fashion.  For me, I have circular Nystagmus.  According to the Nystagmus Network, there are two main types of Nystagmus. The first one is called Infantile Nystagmus or congenital. This is the type of Nystagmus I have. That means a person is born with it. The second type is called Acquired Nystagmus. This can affect people later in life and can have different causes or sometimes no known cause at all. Nystagmus can effect’s everyone’s life differently. It all depends on the type of Nystagmus and the severity of it.

As a young girl I had to use large print books to be able to read my schoolwork. I had a teacher of the visually impaired come in a few times a week to provide one on one support. As I got older, I found out I would never be able to drive. My large print books have been replaced by assistive technology. As a young teenager the adults around me did not know what the future had in store for me. I felt sad and I thought I had a bleak future. I thought that I was the only one who had Nystagmus. I had not met anyone else who had the condition. I had so many questions about my future. I had low confidence.  I also had a lack of peace because I did not know that there was support out there.

In 2011, I was searching through Facebook and I found the Nystagmus Network. I found out that I was not the only one who had this condition and I was not the only one who felt overwhelmed. I began to ask questions about how I could better live with Nystagmus. Now I have lots of friends, from all over the world, and I have a place where I can ask for advice and support.

I have hope too. I know that the Nystagmus Network and other medical professionals are working on finding better treatment and hopefully a cure one day.

Because of the support I have received I no longer feel like Nystagmus is a roadblock in my life. I feel at peace with the fact that I have this condition. I have learned that everyone who has Nystagmus has talents and that even though you may need to modify your career goal you can live out an amazing life. I am now working on building my career as a freelance journalist and an advocate for those who have Nystagmus.

The support I can get daily cannot be given without the help from the public.

Be sure to visit the Nystagmus Network’s site to learn more about Nystagmus and donate today.

Also, be sure to share this post to help spread awareness on this International and National Nystagmus Awareness Day. 😊

Please note: This post was not sponsored in anyway. I just love the Charity Nystagmus Network. 🙂

 

2020: More Courage, Self-Control and Joy-May Edition

Have you ever stopped and just listened to what God is saying to you? That is what I’ve been doing for the month of May.

When it comes to courage, I had to show courage when I had to go back to my orthodontist to find out about treatment for my shifted teeth. I found out that I had to start wearing my retainers full time to try to shift my teeth back to their original position. I will find out, in a few weeks, if I need surgery or not. Ever since that visit to my orthodontist I have been in a body dysmorphic disorder flare.  I find myself looking in the mirror judging my appearance wondering if my teeth have moved even just the slightest amount. That is when I hear God refer me back to Psalm 139:11, “Thank you for making me so wonderfully complex! Your workmanship is marvelous—and how well I know it.” God also has taught me that even though others may judge my appearance, it says in (1 Samuel 16:7),   … “Don’t judge by his appearance or height, for I have rejected him. The Lord doesn’t make decisions the way you do! People judge by outward appearance, but the Lord looks at a person’s thoughts and intention.”  God has shown me that I can finally let go of my body dysmorphic disorder (BDD). I have now found peace with my disorder. I will let you know more about my Orthodontic treatment when I find out more information.

When it comes to self-control, I had to learn to wait for things to happen in my life. For example, I have set a few Financial goals, such as my personal savings. I must slowly put money away to reach them. I will make it though. God has also taught me to continue to have a positive mindset. Right now, I am slowly getting things back together since my hard drive crashed last November. I am working on my book. My goal is to have it ready to present to the Vocational Rehabilitation board in August. It says in Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.”

Joy, in the light of the virus I have started to slow down and learned to enjoy what life has to offer. This month, my grandpa celebrated his 84th birthday. We went out to dinner to one of his favorite restaurants. We both had a fish basket. It was tasty. During my Bible study this month God showed me that I can have emotional peace and I do not have to dwell on the tough stuff. He has showed me that even though I am considered to be labeled as living in “Poverty” I can enjoy being his child and that I can enjoy the little things such as enjoying a nice scent of lavender bubble bath. I am starting to see God’s love around me. All I have to do is stop, listen and look around to find it.

How was May for you? Tell me in the comments below.

Do you feel your child has anxiety disorder? Here’s what to do by Ralph Macey (Guest Article)

Nothing is more painful for a parent than to see his/her child suffering mentally or physically. It’s easier for parents to be on the alert mode when a child is suffering physically. A wound on the knee is easily visible and parents can give medications immediately. But what about the wound in the mind? How can a parent determine that his/her child is suffering from an anxiety disorder?

 

Well, there are a few tell-tale signs to know if your child is suffering from an anxiety disorder. Here are a few of them.

 

  1. Inability to mix with school friends
  2. Too much perfectionism
  3. Problem in focusing on studies
  4. Lack of interest in interacting with family members
  5. A tendency to avoid various activities and situations
  6. Not willing to get out of bed and do all the daily activities
  7. Shaky hands, headache, insomnia, breathlessness, overeating or not eating foods, stomach upset

 

If you see that most of these signs are present in your child, this means that he/she is suffering from an anxiety disorder. What should you do in this situation as a responsible parent? Should you leave it on time and hope your child will become normal again? Should you take some proactive steps to help your child get better? What should you actually do?

 

Well, if your child’s life is getting affected due to anxiety disorder, then you should obviously take steps to get him or her well as soon as possible.

 

Here are a few steps you can take to help your child recover and lead a healthy life.

 

  1. Consult the primary care provider: Take your child to the primary care provider first. He can check all the symptoms and find out various ways to treat children with an anxiety disorder.

 

If your child has a mild anxiety disorder, then, in that case, the primary care provider may prescribe a few medicines and counsel him/her for a short time. Let’s say the primary care provider may take 6-8 counseling sessions. However, if your child has an acute anxiety disorder and PTSD, then he may refer your child to a good psychiatrist in your area. The psychiatrist can give long-term counseling and medicines to your child and make him/her smile again.

 

  1. Initiate delightful conversations: Most kids with anxiety disorder prefer to lock themselves in a room. That’s very bad for their mental health. All the demons get a chance to create a hurricane in their mind.

 

No matter how busy you’re, try to spend quality time with your child, Sit with him and watch a movie in a theater. Initiate delightful conversations when both of you’re in the car. You have to let him shed his guard and open up about what’s bugging him. Don’t go straight to the topic. Rather, give him time to open up.

 

  1. Don’t avoid the trigger factors: Too much love and adjustments are not good for your child’s mental health. If you adjust too much for your kid and avoid the situations that create anxiety, then that would turn into a big problem in the future. Don’t avoid small situations that make your child anxious. This is because you can’t be there with your child 24*7.

 

For instance, if your child becomes anxious whenever someone invites him to a party and you politely decline the invitation to avoid problems, then that’s a wrong move. He would never learn how to mingle with people in a huge gathering. He can’t avoid all the parties all the time. So you’re doing him more harm than good.

 

Teach him the ways to overcome his fears. That’s the best way to help him overcome his anxiety issues.

 

  1. Don’t give junk foods: Many children suffering from an anxiety disorder love to eat junk foods. But these foods trigger anxiety. Don’t let your child eat chips, burgers, pizzas, etc. Encourage them to eat leafy vegetables, fruits, and healthy meals.

 

Conclusion

 

The biggest fear of people suffering from an anxiety disorder is that they want to control things that are uncontrollable. You have to teach your child to handle adversity. You have to make him understand that there are alternative solutions to various kinds of problems. For instance, if someone misses a train, he can take a cab.

 

Instill confidence in your child and help to build emotional intelligence. Teach him the various ways of figuring out a solution to a problem. Let your child go out and face the world.

 

As a parent, it’s normal to feel nervous when your child goes out alone. You may always worry about him. But will you be there with him throughout his life? Can he stay his entire life at home? This is not practically possible. So you have to let him go out and learn how to sort out problems on his own.

 

Interview with Laurie (Guest Post #24)

Hi everyone, Today’s blog post comes from my friend and fellow blogger, Laurie. Be sure to check out her blog and follow her on social media.

  1. What is your name? Laurie
  2. Age? 55
  3. What is the name/cause of your visual impairment (or other disability that you may have)? Mental health issues such as chronic depression and anxiety. Invisible illnesses such as Celiac and autoimmune diseases such as microscopic colitis, also sleep apnea,chronic fatigue syndrome and osteoarthritis among many dx.
  4. How does your visual impairment (or other disability that you may have) effect you on a daily basis? It makes it difficult to function on some days between the fatigue and pain. Brain fog can make keeping up with my blog a struggle. I look at others blogs and have a really hard time not judging mine but I am not going to give up.
  5. What do other people feel about your visual impairment (or other disability that you may have)? Because it is not visible to them it is hard to know or remember that I have a chronic battle that I struggle with daily. It gets frustrating at times.
  6. If you had to give one piece of advice to others about having a visual impairment (or other disability that you may have) what would it be? Don’t live your life based on what you think others think of you. Make sure you take care of you no matter what. We need to break the stigmas and show them that we are more than our dx. We are people with feelings and can live a full happy life in spite of our disease or disability.
  7. Who has inspired you the most in life and your blogging and or YouTube channel? My youtube channel inspiration was due to watching my daughter with her having fun with her animal channels. My blog is something I have always wanted to do but struggled with the confidence to really go for it. Then Ruth Soukup started using the “Do It Scared” motto and it keeps me going.
  8. Besides writing or making YouTube videos, what do you like to do in your spare time? I love to read. I don’t have a specific genre of book. I like many types. I also like to watch movies with family we sometimes have family craft nights too.
  9. Name a bad habit that you have? Emotional eating
  10. Name your best quality?   Empathetic
  11. If you could interview anyone living or dead who would it be and why? That is a tough question. Maybe Mother Theresa. She did so much good and I want to know how she did it all.
  12. What is your college major/Minor? Bachelors arts liberal studies with minor in early childrens services and minor in psychology
  13. What school (college or university) did you go to? UMA~ University of Maine at Aug
  14. What is the title of your blog or YouTube channel? SEEKING SERENITY AND HARMONY

    Laurie photo
    Photo provided by Laurie.

     

     

     

    1. When and why did you start your blog or YouTube channel?
  15. BLOGhttps://seekingserenityandharmony.comI dabbled with a few random blogs off and on but didn’t really get into it until early 2018. My goal is to spread awareness about mental health and invisible illness issues and stigma. I also have a strong interest in advocacy for children as I am watching the mental health rates in our youth rise instead of decline in the last several years. Youth are also showing signs of mental health issues at much younger ages now than ever before.

    YOUTUBE CHANNEL

    It started out as just a place that I posted some bird videos of my poultry so I could share them on Backyard Chickens where I am a member. I have utilized it some during It’s a Lovely Life’s Blogging Challenges but don’t utilize it as much as I should. I want to do a lot more videos this year and hopefully some much better quality ones. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCRDPiiXB_K0NemU4cHy42qg?view_as=subscriber

  16. Where do you see yourself in five years? In 5 years I hope that I will have more time to write and focus on the projects I want to spend time working on. I would like to think that in 5 years I will have improved my health issues and not have such a daily struggle.
    1. Where can other people find you on Social media (Please list and provide links)
  17. https://www.instagram.com/seekingserenity2001/https://twitter.com/harmony2001https://www.pinterest.com/SeekingSerenityandHarmony/

    https://www.facebook.com/seekingserenityandharmony/

    https://www.facebook.com/SeekingSerenityandHarmonyHomestead/

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