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crystal baller

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“Can we try and take the high road though we don’t know where it ends
I want to be your Crystal Baller
I want to show you how it ends” -Crystal Baller; Third Eye Blind

Don’t we all sometimes wish we just knew the future. What will happen to me? Will my life pan out how I meant for it to? For someone who can be prone to anxiety and just general wondering, I’d love to know where I’m going to end up.

I have big dreams, but will I actually achieve any of them ?! .. Idk!

Even taking it year by year, I never could’ve guessed what 2015 brought me.

Meeting the most important person to me, outside of family. Meeting the most important people to him. A new school. Resistance in school.. but thankfully a medication that works, though not perfectly. A finally completed fall semester of college. This blog. New friends. One sick grandparent, another in great pain. The realization that my small buddy since second grade, Chester, is 14 and on the major decline. Some difficult decisions to make. Some goodbyes. A sad one and well, an angry one.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.. thanks Charles Dickens (but mostly Tubthumping). 

Thinking about how 2016 is just around the bend.. I’m becoming more excited to see what’s next. I’ll be going to school again in the Spring semester (HARD knock on wood). I’ll be further along in some healing processes. I have a lot of wonderful things to look forward to.

My perspectives have changed..kind of a lot.. over the past year.

Trust more, worry less. The art of letting go.

Something I’ve majorly shifted my view on, is negativity. So I’ve never been one of those people who’s like ~*positive vibes only guys*~ ..AND hopefully I never will be!!! (Though I order my beanies from these people often)

I’ve actually considered myself a bit of a pessimist all my life– until this year, maybe this month, even.

But, I have decided that I’m no longer putting up with unnecessary negativity in my life. That my relationships are going to be two-sided, and hopefully my friends will see me as just that.. a friend.

I’m not perfect in this area, of being the greatest friend at all times, at all. AT all.

Yet I’m having a lot of realizations about what and what not to put up with in life.

Sometimes, it’s out of my control.

For example, I literally have no control over my diagnosis of bipolar… hopefully if you’ve taken away something from my blog or talking to me you know this by now.

It’s something I have no choice but to accept. I’ve gotta really put in an effort each day and in each season to take care of myself–with the help of my team of course. (Because really, bipolar needs a team to manage, so thank you fam. I’m dedicating a whole post to y’all very soon)

But do I have to accept everything? I’d say no, I can control certain things and make necessary decisions about what I allow to dictate my life.

This year, I’m consciously letting go of negativity.

People that cut me down.

Unnecessary situations.

Unwanted memories of the past.

Just… the dumb drama that has come about recently, that stems from irrationality and pettiness.

Everyone in my family is pretty cut and dry, except for me. I’ve always wanted to see the grey that complicates things. To attempt to justify why people act the way they do. When truthfully, maybe they just really are the way that they are.. and they won’t change, because they don’t even necessarily see a need to.

My family and experiences– they’re all teaching me and helping me to let go. To attempt the high road. Something I’ve regretfully never ever been great at.

But there comes a time to grow up. To not care what trash people will spew about you. Because well, if you’re someone like me, who takes no bull, they certainly will. Let’s count on that.

Trying to keep in mind that people will never know the full story, only manipulated truths.

Here’s to the future and, hopefully, the eventual high road.

Putting trust in God, while looking ahead towards the future and saying bye to what hurts me.

XO- Laura

calm to ill

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“And like the sea
I’m constantly changing from calm to ill” -Sleeping Sickness; City and Colour

Is is okay for someone who blogs mostly about looking through a positive lens and advocating for hope to say they’re discouraged?

My goal in this is to be as real as I can be. Because if I’m not being honest, I figure why would it even be worth the read.

I have to admit that sometimes the stigma and misunderstanding with bipolar seems so great when I feel so small.

Like one voice that’s being drowned out.

Like no matter how far I reach to spread awareness, there will still always be people making a mockery of my disorder.

If you’re reading my blog or seeing my social media profiles and thinking I’ve “conquered” my bipolar, you’re wrong.

Some days are great. This year has been amazing overall. I have so much to be thankful for.

And others days I find I fall apart.

This week is emotional for me as the end of the semester and finals are here. It’ll be my first completed Fall semester of college ever, even though I began back in 2012.

It’s funny.. I used to be obsessive when it came to school. From elementary to high school, and even at my completed semesters at Clemson, I didn’t settle for anything but perfect.

I remember not being satisfied with my 98 on a spelling test in Mr. Jones’ 5th grade class. I took less challenging courses than I could’ve in high school to ensure that I was one of the best, and that I’d get an A.

Things changed.

Because then, my heart got broken. My spirit changed. My diagnosis came out of nowhere. Storms came and went, then came again. My withdrawals from college. Three Falls, all for different reasons–but all stemming from my bipolar. My perspectives changed.

Now, nearing the end of my semester at Queens, I’m facing some.. not so amazing grades. Getting by, but not excelling.

In a way, it’s humbling and freeing. In another way, it’s discouraging and a disappointment. It’s success compared to the past three years. It’s failure juxtaposed with my old standards.

My medicine makes it difficult to go to class when not feeling well, which is sort of often. My tendency to mania makes me easily distracted. The fact that I’m almost 22 and taking gen eds makes it hard for me to care.

With the end of Fall semester comes the reality that Spring semester is next, the dreaded season every year. Because I know what’s ahead. A slowed down brain, less energy, a general fog, fewer words to say.

I probably won’t be writing in this blog much, since I’ve had writer’s block every Spring I can remember.

I don’t want a pity party, but I would like some prayer. While I have Christmas to look forward to, my favorite time of year, I know what’s coming after, and I’m gonna be honest, I’m scared.

I do want this Spring to look different. And I still hold to the hope it can be. Though the truth is there’s no cure or stopping my alternations. The cycle will go on, always. It’s just a matter of managing it.

I’m thankful that God doesn’t change, even when my circumstances do. The only constant among my variables.

He gave me the best family, friends, and boyfriend, who I know will help me when things get a little dimmer, as they always do and it inevitably will.

XO- Laura

yeah, forever!

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“And we’ll always be friends forever, won’t we?” -Tod

“Yeah, forever!” -Copper; The Fox and the Hound

This post is a tribute to my best friend, Allie.

Even though we’re a little ways apart right now– she’s at Appalachian State and I’m in Charlotte, I know that we will always be friends.

So I wanna take you back to the beginning of our friendship.

Allie and I connected right away, and let me say, it wasn’t because of me. It’s because Allie has a way of meeting people, finding a way to relate to them like only Allie can, and really caring about that person– right off the bat.

We first met back in the fall of 2011 because of our ex-boyfriends and their bands. ..So thank God for exes! Y’all rock. You both brought me one of my best friends in the whole world.

While we hardly spoke two words that night and later admitted we were both intimidated by each other (lol), for some reason, over a year later after much talked about double dating that never actually happened, Allie decided to reach out to me on Facebook asking to be roommates at Clemson.

I was so pumped! Of course I wanted to. I wasn’t getting stuck with a rando and she seemed awesome. Shortly after, I was a little manic, because this was the end of spring right before the summer of my psychosis. We went to target to go shopping together in the summer, and ended up talking for hours, not realizing the cart of all our stuff had been STOLEN and taken back to where they reload everything back into the store. Don’t worry–we managed to salvage our plastic owl plates just in the nick of time ; )

We became quick friends. And I could not wait to live with my new friend Allie in the dorms.

.. Then everything with my psychosis and hospitalization happened, and I couldn’t go to Clemson that fall with her like we thought.

Allie had to live by herself in our little corner dorm, until someone moved in eventually from the overflow rooms.

I was devastated. But the good thing was that when I got better, I was able to go visit her at Clemson. We went to a football game together. We went as each other’s dates to the first Autumn shag because wdgaf. I even moved some of my stuff into the dorm on my side.. which totally isn’t allowed. It was the best break possible from the mundane of being at home all day everyday, while everyone else was embarking on their first semester of being away at college. To go see this friend– that was what I looked forward to. The first time I came to visit, she had this waiting for me on our door:

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We went to an Ascend the Hill concert. Ate an abnormal amount of Mike and Ikes out of a vase in the dorm. Laughed until our stomachs hurt. Played mario kart. Giggled and conversed with drunk people on the elevators. Drove to the nearby Bi-lo whilst blasting alternative rock classics. Hung out and talked about life with our RA, Emily. Didn’t have the perfect Pinterest pottery barn/Anthro room. It was great.

We were both getting over our exes together, since we broke up at basically the same time.

…And then came spring. Time for me to actually become a student finally at Clemson. That’s when my first major depression hit me like a ton of bricks.

As I’ve written about in previous posts, I was gripped by absolute misery, for reasons I didn’t really know or understand at the time. I didn’t know I was bipolar. All the sudden I was gaining weight, unable to take care of myself, and just wanting to be alone.

Allie’s no psychiatrist (obviously–she was 18, even though she’s now ironically studying psych), but she was the closest thing to exactly what I needed that semester. Even though I’m sure she missed the easy-going light times with me, she had to accept that that wasn’t our reality anymore. And I don’t think it seemed like there was an end in sight for her when it came to my complete numbness.

I never opened up about my depression once, so there was no way of her even being able to address that specifically. But, as my best friend and roommate, it was so painfully obvious how depressed I was, and I knew she was concerned about me.

But here’s the thing everyone, what she didn’t do, is she didn’t give up on me. Even though I know there were times where she was beyond frustrated, didn’t know what to say to me, etc… she ultimately just decided to be my friend. And that was exactly what I needed at that time.

Instead of trying to fix me, she’d leave encouraging notes for me to find around the room. It was obvious I was struggling with self-worth, so she’d put a post it on my mirror saying “You are BEAUTIFUL! And I love you so much! -Allie.” In my closet would be another verse. On my pillow I’d find different notes.

She’d invite me to anything and everything. And always wanted me to come, even though I’d literally just stand there so awkwardly, while people were probably thinking to themselves.. why is this lovely, bubbly girl hanging out with this.. complete downer?

She realized that slapping a bible in my hand and telling me to come to church and campus ministry wasn’t working. And not that those things are bad.. they are great! But Allie soon realized that like I said, I just needed a friend.

I know it was difficult for her, and we talk about this all the time now.. But I hope she knows for sure that I will always be grateful for her loving me through everything that year– when I felt I was unlovable.

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She showed me through her perseverance and her character who Christ is. She wasn’t embarrassed of me. She wanted to listen. To just be there.. To be present. She brought her disney princess personality to the dark grey of my life. She made herself available in a year that I can promise you.. was not easy for her either.

We moved into an apartment together Sophomore year as well with two other friends (shoutout to Jess and Kara!). And well, this semester turned into a total nightmare for both me and Allie.

Allie was getting help she needed for an eating disorder that I didn’t even know she struggled with until a few weeks leading up to her leaving Clemson. She decided on the journey of taking care of herself and taking a gap year. I was in a huge mania from my bipolar, and then soon after, really medicated, making me an unbearable human to live and deal with.

I was a zombie when Allie needed me. While I know she understands that I couldn’t really help it, it hurt me to think back and realize that I couldn’t be there for my friend like she was for me.

Allie transferred to Appalachian after her time off, and she’s happier than ever and more confident in herself. Which says something, because I always thought she was the most confident person I knew. She inspires everyone she comes in contact with, and is incredibly open about her struggle with her both her eating disorder and her passion for helping others with their mental health. She became a mental health ambassador and started a club at Appalachian–called Appsi–for promoting positive self image.

Anyone who is lucky enough to know Allie can attest to her pure heart, bright smile, compassion for people, boldness, deep faith, and just.. her realness.

And that’s why she means so much to me. She’s real. She never cared about what our friendship would mean concerning her reputation. Because let me tell ya, if there’s anything I wasn’t at Clemson that freshman year, it’s that I wasn’t cool, popular, or fun to be around.

Allie didn’t care..

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Her heart for serving the hearts of others outweighs most all else. And she’d tell you otherwise, but I’m here to tell you, SHUT UP ALLIE, it’s TRUE!!!

I’m so thankful for this amazing friend who stands by me. Now that we are both out of Clemson and in much better places in our lives, we’re able to reflect back and be like.. wtf were we doing there.. and just laugh at ourselves, but also we learn.

Because even though neither of us got it all perfect (um especially me) we will still always be there for one another.

Because well, this is what we all need more of!!! Genuine friendships. And this is the gospel lived out, what she did for me. Yes, erasing the stigma is great and it’s what I aim for.. and there needs to be change regarding mental health policies and what not.. but these friendships and commitment to others can be what really gets us out of the pit.

I can honestly say I’m not sure where I’d be without the angel God sent me in Allie back when.

I love this girl with my whole heart! And she deserves any and all recognition she gets. K, No disclaimers, Allie 🙂 

Thank you for being you, Belle, and for everything you do for the ones you love.

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(^^If you haven’t figured out our pose yet..)

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She painted this for me for my birthday last year. Aaaaand Idk who is who because we are both constantly dying our hair lolol.

XO- Nemo

>> “Two are better than one, because they have a good return for their work:
If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up!” -Ecclesiastes 4:9-10

>> “One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.” -Proverbs 18:24

is this all your plan

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Aging anger brings me to my knees
My heart still hurts and I need forgiveness
And is this all Your plan? Answer me
My heart still hurts

And I give you control
This sleeper, has lost his way- Hands; Returning

There is something we all have in common.

Though it varies eminently, it’s certain. It doesn’t know race or social status.

It’s suffering. 

It’s not about if, it’s about when. 

It’s the job a dad got laid off from. It’s the boyfriend who broke a heart and never spoke to her again. The boyfriend who broke a heart and still keeps her on the leash of emotional abuse. It’s a denial letter from the dream college. The falling out of a friendship.

A mother who passes away unexpectedly. A mother who passes away after holding on for so long. Divorce. Affairs. A relentless bully at school. An incurable condition. Depression. Suicide. The news you have cancer. Your child has cancer.

It’s domestic violence. Broken homes. Drug addiction. Alcoholism. Giving up a child for adoption that you couldn’t take care of, but wanted to so badly. Having an abortion and enduring the aftermath and judgment. Hatred. Racism. Severe financial problems. Sexual assault. Senseless violence. The ongoing wars. The sex-slave trade.

The world is broken. 

And life’s not fair or always kind.

When I was at my darkest moments, I just found myself asking God.. why? If you truly are such a loving God like I’ve learned about all my life, why let all these circumstances destroy us? It seemed cruel. Malevolent.

And it made sense to me that so many turn their back on God after pain.

I did.

Back in 2012, I said God, I don’t know if I believe in you anymore. Why would you allow this crippling depression in, just to torment me?  If you truly loved me, why wouldn’t you just take it away? In 2013, I asked similar questions about being bipolar.

And as I see tragedies unfold, in rhythm as they do, I find myself asking again– why? Suffering doesn’t pick and choose. And yes, “bad things happen to good people.” Every single day.

“If you have faith, God will take away all of your suffering.”

.. Is not true. And actually, He never even said that.

He gave us a different promise.

Eventual redemption entirely from this messed up place, if we choose Him. And can I add– it doesn’t have to be done perfectly. Because we are saved by grace, not by whatever we think we do at the community bake sale that’s surely worthy of our escaping hell.

It’s a promise of a place where there will be no more hurt or sickness or death. 

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. . 

My mom told me a story a while back about my older brother, Wes. When he was undergoing excrutiating treatment for his childhood cancer, he was so weak and sick one day– but he looked up at my parents and he said to them, “It’s okay. God is with me.”

Even though you suffer, just like me, it’s possible to let God hold you and walk with you through that pain. To hold on to the hope that your hurt can be restored.

Sometimes, we let our suffering beget suffering. It’s just our bitterness, spiraling. We justify our decisions because of “what we’ve been through”…And then we ask why, after we’ve walked away, He isn’t giving us everything we think we want and deserve in life.

There’s one thing I know for sure about God now. And it’s that He’s not a God of hate, but of perfect love. That He’s not just idly watching his creation fail. He’s the artist whose work we question constantly, though it isn’t even finished yet.

But take heart! I have overcome the world.” -John 16:33

We weren’t meant to understand everything that happens or the why. It’s beyond our comprehension right now. And maybe, just maybe.. even though it sucks in the moment, the God who knows all things knows what’s best for us, way better than we do.

“The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of the ends of the earth. He does not faint or grow weary; his understanding is unsearchable.” -Isaiah 40:28

“For the foolishness of God is wiser than human wisdom, and the weakness of God is stronger than human strength.” -1 Corinthians 1:25

The cards we’re dealt can be thrown away..torn up. Or, they can be dealt back in a way that reaches for something greater and beyond just ourselves.

I have found purpose in my pain- to try to help others by raising awareness about bipolar disorder, and to tell how faithful my God is to me.

On a rabbit trail, I know it’s technically not a “sound apologetic argument,” but I can’t seem to look at the beauty of the people and world around me anymore, and still question that there is someone higher than us that handcrafted it all.

Even through my pain, I believe it. I believe He’s good. That He has a plan not just for me, but for every person, that I can’t see or understand yet.

“On the day when I see
All that You have for me
When I see You face to face
There surrounded by Your grace

. .

All my fears swept away
In the light of Your embrace
Where Your love is all I need
and forever I am free

. .

I’m believing for the day 

Where the wars and violence cease
All creation lives in peace

. .

No weeping

No hurt or pain”

XO- Laura

september 2014

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I had to go through hell to prove I’m not insane \\ Had to meet the devil just to know his name – Ghost; Ella Henderson

September 2014.
My mind does everything to auto erase this month from my life.

And this is going to be the hardest post for me to write and share.

September 1st. I’m on my way back to Clemson from Athens, the UGA/Clemson game. I’m crying. I’ve just instantly forgiven him, chalking it up to a mistake he made that I didn’t want.

Friday the 5th, my mania is rising. I had plans with this aforementioned lowlife to watch the Clemson homecoming parade. No answer. It’s just hours before rush blowout. I wait at the coffee shop behind my apartment for 2 hours by myself. No answer. I walk down to Main Street, he’s there.

There’s a confrontation. Some welling of tears. Some actual tears. I’m walking back to my apartment, hoping he follows me to see if I’m okay. Of course, he doesn’t.

It’s 6pm. I go outside to watch the parade from my 3rd floor porch with one of my roommates. I just want to go to sleep. I take a dose of zquill and attempt to go to bed for the night. I don’t want to think about him. I don’t want to deal with rush blowout. I don’t want to hurt. There’s that ache that just doesn’t go away. I just want rest.

I lay in my bed for about 45 minutes, my roommate Megan opens my door. “Get up! Come out with us.”

I end up getting out of bed, but can’t find the energy. There’s still pain in my chest and stomach. I just want sleep. I can’t handle this night. I take another, this time unmeasured, swig of zquill.

All the sudden

The world is fuzzy.

I almost

have a smile on my face.

The pain starts to

slip.

I go to my next door neighbor’s apartment, and I start bursting out in tears. My eyes are having trouble staying open.

“Laura are you okay? Are you.. sober?”

She takes me back to my apartment. The bottle has maybe a few doses left. Somehow I sneak that, too. I looked up on my phone “how much zquill is too much zquill.”

Even in my most messed up state, I’m not trying to die.

I asked my roommates to go sit on Bowman field with me. The one in front of the clock tower. A few girls came and sat there for a little while. I’m pulling out the blades of grass. I’m looking towards downtown and at the sky. The clouds are a vibrant pink, blue, and purple. Like nothing I’ve seen.

At some point I’m at Chipotle with them, hoping no one notices anything strange about me.

We go back to the apartment, and I decide I’m going to the BYX party.

No you’re not, we’re taking you to the hospital. One of my roommates is crying.

I grab my bible, and somehow a stuffed animal got there, too. I was playing music in the lobby with about 6 other girls with me (I think).

The nurse is asking why I tried to hurt myself.

“I didn’t,” I told her.

And it was true.

So I’m hooked up to IVs. My dad is coaching my old high school’s football game when he gets a call. He and my brother and my brother’s then girlfriend drive down to see me.

I’m allowed one visitor at a time.

I tell my brother what had happened to me the week before. The anger and hurt in his eyes is so real.

They let me out of the hospital with my dad the next morning. “We’re taking you home,”

No, this isn’t about to be another failed semester at Clemson. I told him I’m fine, I can handle it. I will start taking my medicine regularly again.

Turns out I can’t handle it.

Each day I take more than my prescribed dose. It isn’t on purpose. I don’t even know what I’m doing. I’m mixing up my prescribed twice a day medicine with my as needed one.

Apparently I took a girl in my biology class to coffee on that next Thursday. An event I can’t remember entirely.

I’m so disoriented and uncoordinated that I take a digger into the pavement walking back to my apartment. Coming back from maybe or maybe not going to class. I can’t remember, but I have a gash on my shin.

I’m a walking zombie. People are yelling at me. My roommate is yelling at me. “I don’t know how to help you, Laura.” Is all I remember. The rest is white noise.

My mom comes to Clemson to check on me with her best friend. The plan is to keep me in a hotel with them. It’s September 11th. I beg them to let me go to FCA, telling them I will be fine.

So they let me. But I’m not fine. I keep taking the medicine, and thankfully one of my roommates sees me from across the auditorium. I’m raising my hands in worship, and then I get a text from my mom to come outside.

I finally do, and long story short, I’m in a hospital again. Less than a week from my last visit. Drinking liquid charcoal (yeah, like the art supply) to absorb the chemicals in my stomach. Praying I don’t develop the deadly rash my mood stabilizer can cause. Accepting it could end badly.

The nurse sticks a needle in my arm, but forgets to hook an IV to it.

My mom is crouching by my bed all night in this dark little hospital room.

Miraculously (literally a miracle), I’m let out the next day to come home.

I don’t fight it this time.

Soon after, I’m getting texts from that guy’s mom, saying it’s my fault. That I asked for it. It has to be violent, and this wasn’t.

I hardly hear from anyone at Clemson, except to be told I’m not a victim. I get a phone call from an old friend on September 26th, finding out apparently everyone has the story wrong.

My favorite month, turned to one of my greatest nightmares and demons.

For maybe different reasons than most,

“I’m so glad I live in a world where there are Octobers.” – Anne of Green Gables

It’s crazy to be writing about this a little over a year later, next to Eric in his truck on the way to celebrate Thanksgiving in Ohio.

Im so thankful for another chance at life.

While I’m thankful for break, turkey, turned leaves, colder weather, friends and family.. I think this is what I’m the most thankful for this year.

XO – Laura

how silence can kill

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I can’t help but notice the endless battle for air while being swept by the tides of complacency \\ My knowledge is accountability \\ And I have to do something. -Sinking; Hundredth

I can’t even begin to tell you how many people have messaged me all saying almost the exact same thing.

The gist is this: “I’m so glad you’re writing this blog, because I would never have been able to. Thanks for sharing your story, because I see myself in your posts.”

Some of these are people I’ve known from high school or college or just however, and others were complete strangers to me. Very few also have bipolar disorder.

The struggles mentioned ranged from depression, anxiety, OCD, eating disorders.. and just being a freaking human who has issues from time to time! Like don’t we all!?

I’m so glad that all these people decided to reach out to me. All with similar but at the same time totally unique stories. It has been nothing but super encouraging to me along the way, and I’m thankful for every message I get.

I don’t expect everyone to start their own blog. That’d be absurd if I did. I know you’re all like…I don’t have time for that. If you do want to start one, that’s great! I’ll read it.

 What I do want- is to actually start the conversation, instead of talking about starting the conversation. 

Sydel Curry brought this quote to my attention when she shared my blog a little bit ago:

“What mental health needs is more sunlight, more candor, more unashamed conversation about illness that affect not only individuals, but their families as well.” -Glenn Close

It’s true, I couldn’t have said it any better myself. More unashamed conversation. If you read along with my blog and you’re like, that’s great and all, but there’s nothing I can do about it sorry..

There is.. how about just talk about it with someone! And I don’t mean talk about my blog. I mean talk about mental illness and mental health. 

We’re so scared of mental illness. And I don’t know why.

Actually, just kidding, I do.

We’re scared because it hits way too close to home for us than we’re willing to admit, and we’d rather it just go away. The problem will surely disappear if I don’t acknowledge its existence.

And then, like clockwork, things happen. Horrible things. Things in our world like school shootings. Virginia Tech. Sandy Hook. Columbine.  Movie theater shootings. The Dark Knight. Trainwreck. In the case of the high school my brothers attended in Boston, a school stabbing of a high school freshman. This list is only the tip of the iceberg in tragedy.

It’s heartbreaking. And it’s so easy for us to be angry. I’m angry. Believe me when I say this hurts me. I don’t understand. I cannot comprehend what brings a human to that kind of conclusion about our world and their life.

Mental illness is serious.

Demonizing the mentally ill who cause these kind of tragedies, and then just waiting for the next one to happen is like shooting ourselves in the foot.

“The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing.” -Edmund Burke

Before you get ahead of yourself, I’m not justifying any of the mentally ill shooters that we’ve faced in the U.S. I think they were wrong. I think they were insane. I think they were selfish. I think it’s cruel what has happened to all kinds of innocent people. I think they didn’t get the help they needed. I think they should be held accountable for what they’ve done. Though most already end up pulling the trigger on themselves.

But when will we learn just how important this issue is, and admit how close to home it hits for us? I think we read the headlines and just cross our fingers that it won’t happen in our neighborhoods or our schools. That it’ll stay at a safe enough distance. So that we can mourn, but not do anything.

After all the terrible tragedies that have gone on, do you think it’s easy for the mentally ill to want to get help or to speak “unashamedly” about their condition? I know for me, these times made me want to crawl in a closet and never come out. Because I was so fearful of what people would think when they found out and saw me and all they could think was, bipolar. 

In reality, there are people all around you every day who face mental illness. Studies say half of these people are going untreated.

One of the driving forces behind my blog is this statistic.. according to the dbsalliance, as many as 1 in 5 patients with bipolar disorder completes suicide.

With 5.7 million adult Americans with the disorder, that’s a lot of casualties.

If you were told that that was your fate, a 1 in 5 chance of survival, what would you do with that reality? Would you crawl in a hole, or would you just pretend everything’s okay?

Maybe you would you consider doing something about it.

I’m saying we need to start talking.

I’m not the 1 in 5.

XO- Laura