Saturday, April 22, 2017

Pre Travel planning from an anxiety disorder sufferer..SPOIL ALERT: it sucks.

I'm not sure about you, but I freak the F out when I'm getting ready to travel. Not the plane ride or anything, but the preparation of it all. As I am sitting here typing this, I should be, finishing laundry, packing my suitcase, mail packages that I have to get out today and so many other things, besides blogging. Yet here I am, tick tacking away on the keyboard.

One of the mental illnesses I struggle with is Anxiety Disorder. So, knowing I have all these things I should be doing to make sure I'm not forgetting things and just getting the stuff while I'm away in order, I instead, stress.

My Hubs and kids are very familiar with this ritual.

  1. I get the suitcase out of the storage room a week before. Thinking, I'll be packed up and ready in no time!
    1. WRONG! It's still sitting on the floor of the bedroom. I leave in the morning.
  2. I gather all the toiletries that I have accrued over the several trips. To make it easier to pack. 
    1. WRONG! I feel I should buy ALL new things so I have to go to the store and buy stuff and putting my 'schedule' off course
  3. Finish the laundry so it's not a total mess for the husband a few days in advance while I'm gone. 
    1. WRONG! I just literally threw the last load of laundry that I NEED before I leave tomorrow. Luckily, Kev is insanely capable of doing the boys and his owns. (sigh of relief) 
  4. Carefully pack my carryon bag so it's easy to manage through if I need it on the flight. 
    1. WRONG! I throw all the shit in a bag and sort it out while waiting for the plane to taxi on the run way. 
There are a few other in between things that I am classically known to do as well, but it would make the post super long and therefore creating even more stall time for me. 

Bottom Line: Thankful that Kev and the Boys understand me and make me take a breath and help me work through my anxiety attack. They help me make lists and check the little boxes I have next to my list. 

And honestly, after it's all said and done and I'm sitting at the gate at the airport I take a deep breath, a xanax and drink some coffee and giggling that I will SO not be like this NEXT time I travel. Oh silly Jen, keep telling yourself that! Wanna see me at this very moment: click here 

Monday, April 3, 2017

Being an empath sucks

em·pa·thy
ˈempəTHē/
noun
  1. the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.


Two recent deaths have shaken my world. Amy Bleuel, the founder of Project Semicolon, had died by suicide. Then I learn of of my friend Mandie Wallinger, passed away suddenly last week. 

Though I didn't know Amy personally, her mission and voice has changed so many lives. Her passion and compassion will never be forgotten. Her death has many in the suicide prevention world, devastated. She lost her battle but will always be a staple in the space. 

Mandie was the VERY first person to reach out to me, when I took my first overnight shift at the Crisis Text Line. December 1st, 2013. I was working at Common Ground at the time and my friend Jonny Aguis and I went into the crisis room to start our 11pm-7am shift. Mandie immediately reached out via Direct Message to greet us. Every overnight shift, I enjoyed her humanity and love for the others on the shifts. At the time, it was just Crisis Centers taking convos from varies centers around the country. Mandie was with Samaritans of Boston. I remember listening to her passion for med school and how hard she worked to get in. In March, 2014, I helped develop the remote volunteer program and training. Mandie became a supervisor to some of the remotes. She always was doing trivia during her shift and making the Crisis Counselors engage with one another. She was a staple on the overnight shifts. Once the centers were weaned out the crisis centers at Crisis Text Line, I remained friends with Mandie and was able to watch her hilarious antics and passion via Facebook.

This sadness has engulfed my body the last few days. I think of all the good these two people have given in the world. I feel all the sadness. Being an empath I feel things at such greater height it can knock me out of commission for a few days, just so I can regroup, refresh, remain.

My heart goes out to their families and friends. There are no words I can say that will express the true emptiness in my heart.

This blog is dedicated to both of them. I promise to them and all those they have changed that I will be a source of good. I will continue to help, provide support and speak for them. Because I know that they will not be forgotten.

RIP Amy and Mandie. I will continue to share your stories.