Sunday, September 21, 2014

Cowboys - 4 - Christ

~Too blessed to be stressed

"The shortest distance between a problem and a solution

is the distance between your knees and the ground.

The one who kneels to the Lord can stand up to anything." 

~ God bless and keep sharing the Good News !!! ~ C4C

 My sister introduced me to this page on Facebook.  I love the photographs that go with there quotes.  The quote similar to this:

If you can't stand it, try your knees. 

I know from experience that the first step to solving any problem is admitting there is a problem.  Next step is defining a problem.  If I already know the answer then I follow through and make changes.  However, if I don't know the answer, I need to humble myself to seek help.  Kneeling before God is an act of humility if I am willing to be taught a new way.  I learned there are more than one type of prayer.  The one I tend to do is:
"Heavenly Father I'm in a mess, please, get me out quickly and easily with no effort on my part."  
Yup, I've said this kind of prayer. 
Another type is a negotiation:
"Heavenly Father I'm in a mess, please, get me out quickly and easily, if you do, I'll be good for a week."
The next one is adding a touch of I say thanks so you'll help me, Right?
"Heavenly Father, I'm thankful for all my blessings, please, get me out quickly and easily and I will be your friend."
Or how about the uber polite prayer:
"Heavenly Father, pretty please with sugar on top, get me out of this mess quickly and easily."  
Don't forget the combination prayer:
"Heavenly Father, I'm thankful for all my blessings, pretty please with sugar on top, get me out of this mess that is no fault of my own, get me out quickly and easily.  I will be your friend and be good for 2 weeks." 
Yea, I've said all of those.  I sometimes felt like Heavenly Father put my prayers like these on His Comedy channel and He and His angels laugh and laugh. Just for fun, He would grant one of my petitions.  Took me awhile to learn about some of the other prayers.

The gratitude prayer - I don't recommend kneeling for this one unless your knees are strong.  The gratitude prayer itemizes all the blessings I can think of and listing them in detail.  The amazing thing about this prayer is the longer I talk the more the list grows.  I mention I am thankful for food and I have to mention I especially thankful for chocolate.  I am thankful for my kids then I need to thank Him for their wonderful spouses and then I need to thank him for the grandkids.  I noticed that Heavenly Father's blessings just keep growing and getting better.  Especially after reading Betsy's advice in the Hiding Place.  "Corrie, don't forget to thank Him for the fleas." I add in those fleas and the list gets mighty long. 

I am finally learning the humble prayer it goes something like this:
"Heavenly Father, I made a hellacious mess of my life.  I saw that hole and jumped right in.  I recognize the error I made of jumping in.  I would like to fix this mistake.  I will do what ever it takes to get out."

"Will you give up your sins?"


"Will you work hard?"


"Will you serve others?"


"You know you are going to make more mistakes tomorrow, what will you do then?"

"I'll be back on my knees working on those solutions tomorrow but today I have sufficient to undo."

Matthew 6:6-13

 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.

 Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him.

 After this manner therefore pray ye: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.

 10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, as it is in heaven.

 11 Give us this day our daily bread.

 12 And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors.

 13 And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever. Amen.

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Spoon theory

Poppyposts shared an excellent web page. 
This is Poppyposts link
She shared a link to The Spoon Theory.  I can't post it here, which I respect. 
Christine Miserandino
Christine Miserandino

Christine Miserandino
Christine Miserandino
Christine Miserandino
Christine Miseradino generously shares a PDF file that you can download.  Yes, I downloaded a copy for myself.

I remember when I was at my worst. I could be up only 20 minutes a day. A friend asked me what a good day was. I answered, “I got up.” She waited for me to continue. I shook my head, “That’s it, I got up. A fantastic day, I got up and got dressed.” I think the spoon theory would have helped to explain my daily routine of thinking about every move I made all day long.  I am now in better health than I have ever been.  I am still careful about keeping some in  reserve.  I am stressing at work because I am pushing so hard I collapse when I walk through the door at home.  A dangerous game when I have to drive home for 30 minutes first.  Counting every move, every task, every change of activity cost precious energy. I now can plan to do in a day what I used to plan to do in a week.  I feel so blessed.

Sometimes the day is just too tough to face.

When your mental health is bad, what can I do to help?

 This is a series of post answering questions posed by Kevin's daughter.  I asked permission to answer each of these questions as if I was answering my adult children.  I will also include a link to Kevin's answer.

4. When your mental health is bad, what can I do to help? 

Interesting question.  This question is from Kevin's daughter but my children have also offered to help me.  I'm so grateful for what my kids have already done.  When I was very sick, they stepped up and did all sorts of things I felt was my responsibility but didn't have the strength to do. Hard to put away the dishes when you can't get up off the floor.  Many people aren't aware of how physically taxing mental illness can be.  My mind caused my body to be ill.  Severe insomnia created a vicious cycle of loosing sleep and strength.  My kids helped with everything.  I am so grateful for the amazing things my kids did to help me to be as independent as possible.  As teenagers they would drive me to the store so I could do my own shopping.  By the time I was finished shopping, I would be exhausted and they would load up me and the car and drive home.  Time and time again, my amazing kids filled in when I couldn't do the simplest of chores.

All of my children now have homes of their own.  Their encouragement and love continues to sustain me as I learn more ways to live with PTSD.  Email messages, visits, phone calls if I am having a good day, asking me to babysit grandkids all these small events do so much to help me.   The reason I say phone calls on a good day is on a bad day, I can't hear on the phone.  Hearing gets worse when I am under high stress.  Sadly when PTSD gets bad there is little anyone can do for me.  Things like drawings from the Grandkids I can look at and feel their love and yours.  Unfortunately, when PTSD gets bad the kindest thing is to give me time alone without feeling like it is your fault.  Acceptance of my quirks goes a long ways to helping me cope with them.  Acceptance, laughter and love are powerful medicines that I receive in abundance. 

Trying to cope with PTSD symptoms is harder than herding ducks. 

Friday, September 19, 2014

Do I make your mental health worse?

 This is a series of post answering questions posed by Kevin's daughter.  I asked permission to answer each of these questions as if I was answering my adult children.  I will also include a link to Kevin's answer.

3.  Do I make your mental health worse?

I wish I could say a flat out 'no' but that is not how PTSD works.  Triggers make my mental illness worse.  Sometimes you kids did things that would trigger me.  Most of you eventually figured out you could use that to your advantage.  On the flip side, having kids also made my mental health better.  I worked hard to heal so that I could better mom to you.  Six amazing people were my own little army keeping me moving forward when my greatest desire was to lay down and give up.  I cherish memories of little arms creeping around my neck with a quick hug when I felt like I was falling totally apart.  You kids were my inspiration, my motivators, and on occasion my reason to live.  I look at pictures of you growing up and I am in awe that I am privileged to be your mother.  You were each your unique selves.  I am glad you came into my life.  All of you made a difference by improving my quality of life. 

Added bonus is watching each of you raise your children so differently from each other.  You each processed how we as parents raised you and found your own style.  I am surprised when the grandkids do things that are just like you kids did.  I am starting to understand that many things that happened in our family was kids being kids with all the ups and downs of growing up.  I believe with all my heart that I would be much worse off without your Dad and you kids and grandkids in my life.  Thank you for teaching me so much about love and what it should be like.  

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Is mental illness hereditary?

 This is a series of post answering questions posed by Kevin's daughter.  I asked permission to answer each of these questions as if I was answering my adult children.  I will also include a link to Kevin's answer.

2. Is mental illness hereditary?

Debated and redebated and round and around. For a few years, 'experts' declare that it is all environmental, then they blame the parents, then they blame traumatic events.  Then they blame genetics.  Then the swirl back around to choice.  A person chooses mental illness.  Latest thing being blamed is traumatic brain injury, TBI.  After all, who hasn't fallen and hit their head at some time?  Bottom line, scientist can't eliminate enough possibilities to pin point exacts causes. Sadly, sometimes people that choose evil are said to be mentally ill and given a diagnosis rather than say that evil exists.  People are not allowed to be used as guinea pigs to find out what will happen to them.  Not  OK. 'Proving' one theory over another is just about impossible.  Theories are some experts' best guess.

Perhaps the question behind this question is, "will my children get mental illness because I have it?"  I was asked this by one of my children and I believe my answer still applies.  "No, you will not end up like me because, I will believe you, teach you what I have learned, and encourage you to get counseling."  I won't deny their reality.  The depths of suffering that I experienced was partly due to neglect.  I neglected to get the care I needed because I didn't believe it was possible for me to be mentally ill.  Denial causes plenty of damage. 

I read articles that declare that abuse actually changes DNA.  For a time I was troubled by the idea that my abuse would be transmitted by me.  Then I did some research and learned that human eggs are already formed before birth.  So can abuse be past on? Is it genetic or environmental? Is mental illness the results of genetics or environment of having a peculiar parent?  I don't have a solid answer.  My best guess is I don't know.  I would love to have a definite answer, I don't.     

Although the exact cause of most mental illnesses is not known, it is becoming clear through research that many of these conditions are caused by a combination of genetic, biological, psychological, and environmental factors -- not personal weakness or a character defect --   

Life is a gamble.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Emotion chart

Writers work at drawing out the emotion in a story. Survivors work at anesthetizing themselves from pain, killing off other emotions is the process. I am exploring emotions from different perspectives. I lived a huge chunk of my life without emotion. I survived this way. I felt bothered when someone envied my ability to cut off emotions. I explained to the person that the down side is all emotions are eliminated not just the less desirable ones. What is interesting with this chart is how she shows the similarities between negative and positive emotions.  I will keep exploring this information. 

Enjoy the link.