There are so many good blogs out there, and I love to share posts that I find rewarding to read.
I’ve been watching a lot of TED talks lately. For anyone who doesn’t know, TED is a nonprofit organization that holds conferences, with the only goal in mind being to spread information, education, and ideas. I have always believed that education should be free, and that people should learn what they want to, not what schools decide (seriously, standardized testing is putting so many limits on the growth of young minds). The talks are free on the TED website, and now on netflix and youtube, it is possible to learn *anything* from experts in every field, and there is more than likely at least one video (probably more like thirty) on something that interests you.
I love learning. I love that learning can be for fun, but also can add to my survival tool box. There is a lot that can help me, and others like me, achieve health. I have *so* much information about my diagnosis (and other mental illness diagnoses) that has been illuminating but ultimately unhelpful. In one of the talks I was recently watching, I was struck by the speaker’s accuracy in identifying a common mislabeling. He wanted to speak at a college health fair, and they listed the focus of their week — Monday was depression, Tuesday was bullying, Wednesday was eating disorders, Thursday was drug use, etc. He pointed out, that was not a health fair, that was a *sickness* fair. Just because I know an impressive amount of information about my illness, it does not qualify me to know how to heal.
Obviously I am healing. But it is not due to focusing on my illness or being in places for sick people. I have done all of that, of course, but it did not begin to heal me. What heals me is seeing and learning about true health. I have learned to love myself. I have learned to set boundaries in relationships and not become codependent. I am learning what is possible for my life, how wonderful it is and will be. This is true healing.
I believe there is importance in validating and understanding illness. I also believe that doing that alone will never bring health.
I wanted to share a TED talk here with you. I know it’s 20 minutes long, but I urge you to trust that 20 minutes of focus on health can’t hurt you. You can spend the rest of your day, or week, or life focused on illness if you want. I know that’s what I thought my life would be like, before. I know how much it hurts, to try and see the hope and potential that other people talk about, when you feel like it is a struggle to get through each day. I know that sometimes all I could feel for people who tried to inspire me was contempt because *they didn’t understand what I was going through.* I know I will never understand what you are going through, or have gone through. I know what *I* have gone through. I know that changing my mind about things has changed my life. I know that healing is possible — even when certain things cannot be physically or mentally repaired, there is always, *always* a way to heal and adapt so that hope can be welcomed back into life.
I know that you may not share my opinion. I know that I wouldn’t have believed this either, when I was at my worst. I would have hated the self-righteous person saying all this, and I would have thought, “Yeah, well they have no idea. They have probably never had a shitty day to rival my shitty days. They have probably never suffered like I have even for a day in their life.” That person sounds really bitter, doesn’t she? I was.
This talk is by a woman who suffered a TBI (traumatic brain injury) and then felt suicidal and hopeless in the long, seemingly endless process of trying to heal her brain. She found a way to alleviate suffering and heal herself and it’s *so relevant* to everyone — even if it’s not relevant to you right now, it’s relevant to someone you care about. In the first few minutes I almost gave up on it (I don’t care much about video games), but I stuck with it and I’m glad I did. Relax and take 20 minutes to learn something that could change your mind and change your life.
It also introduces a term that I’d never heard before, “post-traumatic growth.” I am so excited to learn about this concept, because it is exactly what I feel I am experiencing lately.
Other blogs I recommend:
I’m a 50-year-old Scottish male Living in London. Suffering mental health problems, including, Depression/ Bipolar (unconfirmed), PTSD, (associated) Agoraphobia, and (newly diagnosed) Borderline Personality Disorder.
So many nice pictures, I totally fell in love with her blog and pinterest site
Simply a wonderful girl with different parts inside
Exploring ways to win the wars waged within the mind, writing about it, and playing some cards on the side (something has to pay the bills!)