Today is rough..

Today is just another day, but it seems like a difficult one to get through.

I am frustrated, impatient, anxious, hopeless.

It’ll be better tomorrow, or worse.

It’ll just be another day.

But it got better… as it usually does.

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Let’s Do Drugs… Safely!: Cocaine

Disclaimer: I have some background and involvement in harm reduction, but I want to make it clear that these are mostly based on opinions and advice of others. Do not treat it as fact, use as guideline if you want, but do your own research. The best would be by researching harm reduction techniques as approved by Harm Reduction Committees or those specializing in harm reduction.

(This bitch is seriously distracting me, so I’m just going to write about cocaine while she mumbles passive aggressively in the background)

 

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The answer to the question, “When should I do cocaine?”.. is always NEVER. I would suggest to get high on life and count your blessings instead, or smoke weed. Maybe a nice Sativa that will elevate mood, motivation and maybe sprinkle some creativity into your life, and give you that energy you might be looking for in cocaine.

 

Ok, so let’s do this safely if you insist on doing so. We go back to the golden rule…

Always test your drugs!

I had mentioned in an earlier blog that you probably did not read, that you can get testing kits online. It is also very important, especially right now with the fentanyl crisis still in play, that you ensure your kit tests for fentanyl as well.

 

If you get a new batch, try small amounts before moving on to your regular sized lines to test out the strength. As you (already should) know, different batches come in different strengths so you want to to do just the right amount to be comfortable, not cracked out.

 

Powder that shit up as much as possible. A few things you can do if it’s a little rocky or crystally.. I’ve been told that microwaving an empty plate for about 30 seconds, and then crushing your coke on the warm surface helps. Use the flat side of a card to crush it to a fine powder. You don’t want little chunks in there that could aggravate your nostrils more than usual. Use clean surfaces. I suggest using water and vinegar to clean your surfaces prior to use. Dry the surfaces properly. Once it’s crushed down to a fine fine fine fine fine powder, I guess you’re ready. (Still not too late to grab some weed instead).

 

Many people say using bills is the “most satisfying way of snorting”. It’s also the grossest! I recommend using clean straws. Do not share straws as it increases risk of transmitting infectious diseases, obviously. And change straws as often as you can. So just have a bunch handy and throw them out.

 

I’m just going to state the obvious here. Do not binge. Do not continue doing it to feel better from the comedown. Give yourself a day to rest. HYDRATE!

 

After you’re done, remember to flush out your nose before bedtime. Use a natural nasal spray (saline water with aloe if possible) or a netti pot. You could also rub coconut oil in your nostril to sooth the discomfort. I hope you have a humidifier handy if you live in dry climate.

 

If you have trouble sleeping, smoke some sleepy time weed to help your mind and body relax.

 

The comedown…

You can hope that it doesn’t give you a bad comedown, but if it does…

Eat, hydrate, stay in bed if you have to, smoke weed if you’re anxious, paranoid, sad, etc. If you don’t smoke weed, talk to your health store about dopamine supplements that may help. Cocaine depletes your dopamine, which in turn can cause irrational thoughts and unwanted feelings. Always remind yourself that these feelings are caused by the comedown, and will pass. Don’t do more coke to feel better, for obvious reasons, like you’re making the eventual comedown harder to deal with. Watch some tv, something funny, or uplifting. If you and friends are coming down, try to do it together for support.

 

I believe that’s it for now. Have fun, be safe, be smart.

Mental Health Day(s) and a short story (Change is Change)

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What is a mental health day(s)? We’re familiar with the term sick days; assuming that one is physically ill and cannot attend to their work duties. But what about mental health days? Are they a practice in your organization? Are people comfortable saying, “I need to take a mental health day”, without being afraid of stigmatization, and being treated differently. How do you know you need a mental health day?

“I don’t have any (diagnosed) mental health issues, so I don’t need mental health days”

… but what about times your levels of stress are through the roof, you feel down, not yourself, it’s getting worst every day, you find it hard to get motivated or be effective at your job and daily living…

You may need to take a mental health day or two, or more.. as many as you need! Call it what you want, but take time to bring yourself to a balanced state of mind. Mental Health days are not just for those who are diagnosed with mental health issues!

Mental health applies to EVERYONE!

 

Right here is where I ramble on for story time. Preface: I live in Canada and I work in the field of Social Work. This is important to note, because it is relatively easier for me to talk about mental health related issues openly and without fear of judgment. Self-care practices are incorporated in our work life and encouraged in our daily life. At work, we have a committee that focuses on self-care education, and organizing self-care activities.

 

About a year ago, I was suddenly thrown out of balance in the sense that many changes were happening, and they were happening quickly, all at once. There was no time to process, or adapt. Mind you, the most of the changes were good, some neutral, and some not so good, Keep in mind that change is change, no matter the context. It could be great change, like say, a promotion that you’ve been waiting for, or a newborn baby (or puppy)! All sound like great things, but change means adapting to, or finding a new normal.

 

When all these changes were happening to me, and around me, it took me time to process, and maybe I wasn’t processing. I found it more difficult to focus on work, and be effective at my job. This is a problem! As a social worker, I need to be well to be able to help others through their process of change. But I wasn’t well.I thought I’d just wait it out as usual, but little things were getting to me. Bare in mind that I’ve had years of experience struggling with depression and anxiety, so I thought, it comes and goes… but it didn’t quite go. I started to feel like I was going to have panic attacks, my body was tensed to the point I was in excruciating pain for weeks.

 

One evening, while I was facilitating an anger management group program with a colleague, I felt my body telling me that a panic attack might be coming on. I left the room and took a few minutes to myself. I think I cried, I don’t remember. I went right to my Manager, and said, “I think I’m burning out”. She looked at me, clearly shocked. (In her mind, I was usually the one that colleagues went to when things weren’t going well, but in such a supportive environment/family, we all went to each other). She took a few moments and said, “Well then, we’ll have to figure something out”. She used the word “we”, letting me know that I wasn’t alone in this.

Note: My manager knew I was talking about Compassion Fatigue and Vicarious Trauma. In addition, she knew about an incident that had recently happened to a client of mine, and other events that were changing in my personal life.

We both agreed to reflect and discuss this issue in depth at a later time.

 

After reflection, I decided that I needed a break, but at the same time knew that completely removing myself from work would cause more stress. (I love the work I do). I approached her with a plan; a three day work week. We discussed what that would entail, and how my responsibilities would be altered during this time. I then spoke to my doctor and got a note. My manager went above and beyond to make sure I was not getting a pay-cut, and advised that I would be able to use my sick days and vacation days if needed to make up for the time I was missing. So for three months, I worked a three day week, and then a four day week for a month after to ease into the normal five day work week that I have. My manager, and collegaues were all very supportive and continued to check-in with me.

 

Back to this week….

I felt something coming on. I wasn’t feeling myself again, so I decided I need to take a day! I called in sick, and I thought to myself, I want my Manager to know that I’m being proactive and taking a mental health day. This needs to be normalized.

This was the email correspondence between us.

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In two sentences, she gave me reassurance, showed empathy and genuine care, for me as a person, and then an employee.

I am truly blessed to have this kind so support at work, and in my personal life.

 

In addition to taking a day off, I let some of my friends know that I wasn’t doing too well, and if I seemed distant or unresponsive it was me taking time I needed. They were all unsurprisingly supportive, and check-in appropriately until they were sure I was doing better. This doesn’t only happen when I’m down, but ALL THE TIME. I am truly blessed.

 

My boyfriend, Lance, was amazing! He had the day off and we spent it together. He put in effort to understanding how I felt, and somehow just knowing what I needed from him that day. He always takes such good care of me, and respects my emotions, even when they are all over the place!

 

I am just so grateful. I feel blessed.

 

 

 

How Do I Spend 3045750 hours of My Life Looking for Things?!

i’m either walking around looking for my phone (in my 600sq. ft. apartment), or looking for things that I JUST HAD IN MY HAND! People say it’s a sign of intelligence of sorts because your brain is always thinking. Well, why can’t it just STFU and let me be, Now I’m walking around my apartment once again, looking for a little box, that I thought I just had. Mothers are the best for finding things you can’t even see (and then you get yelled t for not seeing it… IT’S A SIGN OF INTELLIGENCE, MOTHER!). Well mother isn’t here so I’m on my own.

 

Truly feels like I’m going insane. And I have clients asking me to help them with memory issues because they lose things or forget things. I’m surprised I even remember what day it is when i wake up.. ok so it takes a few seconds but I get there eventually.

 

So I’m looking for this little RED box and I can’t find it. Thought I’d take a break and rant about misplacing items ALL THE TIME, because I’m thinking about 27 things and doing 8 things at a time.

 

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Why can’t I just be lost OR mad? Why must I be both at once.

 

HELP!

 

Ok, I do understand that things get lost in memory when we do not pay full attention, but I get bored, and I the thoughts just keep coming with no announcement whatsoever. How rude! And then I’m back to walking around looking for my phone again.. Oh no, where’s my phone! arrgghhh…

 

If anyone is reading this, and has tips on, how not to lose stuff, or idk.. just useful tips for life, do share. I’m lost. and mad. and tired.

Let’s Do Drugs… Safely!: Salvia

Disclaimer: I have some background and involvement in harm reduction, but I want to make it clear that these are mostly based on opinions and advice of others. Do not treat it as fact, use as guideline if you want, but do your own research. The best would be by researching harm reduction techniques as approved by Harm Reduction Committees or those specializing in harm reduction.

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If you ever find yourself saying, “I wanna try Salvia!”. Don’t. It’s a bad idea. Turn around and walk away. Just say no to drugs in general, but I really mean it with this one, like mean it more than usual. It is 100% not necessary.

But i know you… you’re stubborn aren’t you? Argghhh… So here we go.

Salvia. WHY!?

It’s really difficult to know what you’re getting with Salvia because everyone’s experience is SO different. But one thing stays the same… for a few minutes (not long) you will lose total touch with reality. But it ends. Remind yourself…  especially if it’s a bad trip… tell yourself it ends. Or have friends around you that can do that for you.

Have friends babysit! Do it one person at time. Make sure you’re in a comfortable setting and have a clear head so you’re trip isn’t negative. Before you begin your trip, think of something positive, and remind yourself, once again that what you are about to experience is not reality.

Once again I’m going to say don’t do it, it’s really not necessary. But hey… be safe! I cannot stress enough… HAVE SOBER PEOPLE AROUND! and hydrate! 🙂

Let’s do drugs… Safely!: Alcohol

Disclaimer: I have some background and involvement in harm reduction, but I want to make it clear that these are mostly based on opinions and advice of others. Do not treat it as fact, use as guideline if you want, but do your own research. The best would be by researching harm reduction techniques as approved by Harm Reduction Committees or those specializing in harm reduction.

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The key rule is HYDRATE! I say this while I’m drunk-ish but hydrating. It helps with the hangover and well.. everything, even when you’re not drinking alcohol.. just keep hydrated always!

 

Many people think that once you puke, you’ve puked enough alcohol out to keep going. This is WRONG! It’s already in your system so it’s not making more space for more alcohol. It’s your body telling you you’ve had enough. STOP or you put yourself at risk for alcohol poisoning. You don’t want that.. They pump your stomach. Thankfully I’ve never had that happen to me but it does not sound like or look like fun! So stay safe! Drink responsibly.

And obviously… don’t drink and drive! That’s just common sense! Uber please. Or Lyft. Or cab. Or call a sober friend. Or have a designated driver, but that kinda sucks for them, unless they don’t drink then it’s great! It’s always ideal to have that one friend that does not drink so is totally fine with being the DD.

 

Just a quick note for anyone who has a alcohol use issue and wants to stop. Detox safely. Alcohol withdrawal is the most dangerous out of substance withdrawals… it could lead to seizures and other bad things, like death. So if this is something you want to do (detox, not seizures), do it safely, in a detox facility if possible please! Or get professional advise on how to do so. I just want you to be safe.

 

xo.

Let’s Do Drugs… Safely: MDMA

Disclaimer: I have some background and involvement in harm reduction, but I want to make it clear that these are mostly based on opinions and advice of others. Do not treat it as fact, use as guideline if you want, but do your own research. The best would be by researching harm reduction techniques as approved by Harm Reduction Committees or those specializing in harm reduction.

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I’m writing from a perspective of; you know what MDMA is and have some experience with it.

If you don’t.. just don’t do drugs. But if you insist on doing them, the key rule is DO IT SAFELY! and hydrate.

In this post I’m going to focus on MDMA. It’s a bunch of chemicals so I’m just going to state the obvious and say… it’s not safe.

Rule #1 with any substance you’re buying off the street is… TEST YOUR DRUGS. You can get a testing kit online. It’s simple to use. Use it. During the fentanyl crisis that we’ve been experiencing, make sure you’re testing for fentanyl as well (some kits do not test for fentanyl so make sure you get one that does or an additional one specifically for fentanyl). With MDMA, it is crucial to test your stuff every time you grab, to ensure your dealer is not selling you “something like MDMA” or “it’s pretty much the same thing”. It’s not. I assure you.

Please be aware of dosage as well. Especially if it’s your first time, try out 0.1g before trying more. GIVE IT TIME! It takes time to start feeling anything, just like anything else that is orally ingested.

So quick story. Most people use MDMA to party all night. Weirdly enough (or maybe it’s quite appropriate), me and my ‘oh-so social worker friends’ used it in a quiet reflective environment for acceptance and empathy. It gives you a sense of feeling content, which in my experience allowed me to focus on everything I am grateful for without the distractions of the ever looming anxiety and depression. MDMA Therapy is something that is being researched. Google search it, as I always say. But used in this context in a positive, uplifting environment can be transformative. However, it has to be the right environment and supports. Like I always say, right supports are paramount! Anyway, we’ve used it to get in touch with ourselves, and each other. It sounds pretty romanticized and I guess it was. It helped me on my journey of finding myself. However, I believe hallucinogens like peyote, shrooms, ayahuasca etc. with a shaman is probably the best for finding the self. Or self-help books. And self-reflective and acceptance, and being kind to yourself and others. You don’t need drugs for this let me just be clear here.

 

Anyway let’s get to it. Other than testing, make sure to stay hydrated. Hang on tightly to a bottle of water and keep sipping. Make sure your friends do the same. Have hydration breaks if you must and make sure everyone doing MDMA takes a drink.. of water to be specific. It also helps with reducing the intensity of the come down,.. and reduces dehydration headaches. This is especially important if you are exerting yourself and keeping active. Make sure to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate. But little sips.

 

Teeth grinding. This will probably happen. Chewing gum helps avoid grinding your teeth against each other but it also makes your jaw sore. Your jaw may feel tense so remind yourself to relax your jaw. Have your friends remind each other when they notice this happening, If you find yourself grinding your teeth when you go to bed, get disposable mouth guards.

 

Feeling sick. You may feel sick and anxious during the come up. Listen to your body. If it’s telling you to puke, PUKE! the come up is cleaner after elimination. Just be conscious that feeling nauseas is common especially during the first hour after consumption. If you’re sensitive to this, plan ahead and make sure to have access to a washroom.

 

Have sober friend around. Someone who has experience and knows how to take care of situations is ideal.  Especially important if you are out and about.

 

Can’t sleep? This may happen. Don’t stress. You will fall asleep at some point. If you smoke weed, I suggest smoking some indica to help you rest.

 

The comedown.  Yup, everything that goes up must come down. Give yourself at least a day to recover. In this time, allow yourself to feel shitty, maybe depressed, tired – this is normal. Give yourself time in bed if you need it. Once again stay hydrated. Eat even if you don’t feel like. If you smoke weed, smoke some. It’ll help with the come down. Indica.

 

*when I say smoke weed I mean any type of ingestion, including CBD dominant strains, but try to smoke an Indica dominant strain to help mellow out.

 

One last thing, and I’m just going to get a wee-bit technical here, just a bit. MDMA basically depletes your serotonin. So if you are taking any medications especially mood stabilizers that are SSRIs, you may want to be a little more cautious and speak with a health care professional if possible, or at least look online for useful, accurate information. Or speak to a pharmacist. Call anonymously if you have to.

I think that’s it for now. Once again, don’t do drugs, but if you do; be smart, be safe! Oh and PLEASE DO NOT SNORT MDMA! It’s not necessary what so ever. Argh… but if you’re going to be stubborn once again and do it anyway, make sure you grind it down well with the flat side of a card because it can be very crystally (yes, I’m using that word). So keep your sinuses safe and grind it down as much as possible, but once again, really… this is not necessary whatsoever so just don’t do it.

 

Take care!

 

The Weed Trinity

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Hi(gh) There!

So in my earlier blog I was rambling on about knowing your weed. It is the best way to get the most out of your weed.

Weed is so diverse and multi-layered. So for personal use, I break it down to the 3 most important factors that I’ve deduced with countless nights of endless research. Fine I just thought of it right now.

Oh right.. note: I’m writing this post under the impression that you, dear user/reader/human-bean, have access to medical/legal marijuana and are able to choose strains to purchase. For those of you buying weed off the kid down the block, you don’t really have choices, but this information is good to know too. 🙂

Anyway, to recap from the last post because you probably didn’t read it, here it is… The Big 3, The High-three, The Three Commandments, The Burning Three (like the burning bush..heheh), ooo… post in comments if you have names for this. I’m sure it’ll be better than anything I came up with.. but for now, let’s just call it..

The Weed Trinity:

  1. THC/CBD %

THC: the stuff that gets you high

CBD: doesn’t get you high but has amazing medicinal properties!

Let’s start with THC; the stuff that gets you high. So the first thing to do is know your tolerance. my tolerance is pretty low, so something with a lower THC percentage (in my opinion lower than 12%) gets me high, but I’m still able to function relatively as per usual (so not that great). anything between 12% – 18% is pretty mid range. And anything over 18% is pretty high I suppose. But these are really just my experience. note that even though my tolerance is low, I do smoke/ consume anything between 0-27% THC depending on what I’m using it for. so basically this section is pointless and self-explanatory but I rambled anyway because that’s what I do.

Conclusion: High THC%, the higher you get! (you’re welcome for this insightful insight!)

Ok.. Let’s go to the stuff I really love; CBD.

“Why do you love it if it doesn’t get you high?”, you ask. For someone like me who can’t really function while high, CBD is a LIFE SAVER! I use weed mostly for medical reasons, so CBD helps reduce my anxiety, stabilize my mood (yes, my psychiatrist says that my mood is not stable… I’d be offended if he wasn’t so darn accurate!), increases energy, reduces pain, and so on. The uses of CBD are not limited to those I’ve listed.

I call CBD an “Anti-everything+ “

I’m not going to go into all it’s uses and how it acts as  tumor/cancer prevention and so on, but I urge you to do a quick Google search that would tell you all the crazy amazing health benefits. I’m not even anywhere close to being health conscious but the amount of benefits… blows my mind!

I have CBD in both oil form and dry herb. Oil just takes longer to activate, where else vapourizing or smoking is instantaneous. I prefer the oils because it’s easier to use especially when at work, and I find the effects longer lasting.

So to wrap up this section that I thought was going to be way shorter, watch for the percentages. Use different percentages throughout the day for different levels of high… Yes, I stick by that sentence. Oh and one more thing…. there are strains that are low/high, and strains that are balanced, so you get a nice balance of THC and CBD. I prefer the balanced strains for day use.

 

       2. Sativa/ Hybrid/ Indica

Short version:

Sativa: Let’s get active! So it’s more of an upper in a sense. Use it when you want to move around, get creative (I find that some strains are really good for creativity), it’s uplifting. The only thing I’m cautious about because I do struggle with anxiety, is that if I’m not being active, smoking a higher THC sativa can cause anxiety and paranoia, and a sense of restlessness. So definitely a go to when you want to be up and about. I find these great for morning/ day use.

Hybrid: A combination. Watch for dominance; sativa or indica dominant. It’s nice in a sense that it gets you up and going, and then mellows out. so it’s usually perfect for evening use, and then mellowing out into the night.

Indica: ‘Sleepy time weed’ as I call it. I sometimes have trouble sleeping and a high THC indica that mellows me out and hugs me like a cloud is ideal! I use it mostly for sleep, but it’s also great if you’re relaxing on the couch, and winding down for the day.

 

3. Method of Ingestion

So we have a few methods going on… I’m going to break it down to inhalation and oral ingestion. Note that the way you ingest weed has affect on the psychoactive effects. For example, smoking usually gives you more of a head high, but vapourizing and oral ingestion usually produces more of a body high.

Inhalation

So here we have every method of smoking, and vaping. Using a vapourizer is said to be the safest form of inhalation. I don’t really have anything to say here other than don’t burn stuff especially if you;’re smoking indoors or in bed. I say this from experience, knowing how easy it is to burn holes in your sheets/mattress. Also, NEVER forget to fill your bong with water; OUCH. And when you’re hitting the bong, inhale appropriately so you don’t get disgusting bong water in your mouth and out your nose; this actually didn’t happen to me! But it did happen to someone i knew. No one could help because we were all falling off the chairs (and deck) laughing. Oh well. Just be safe is my point!

Oral Ingestion

You know how people say, “you can’t overdose on marijuana!”. Technically you can. You get really sick. Just ask a friend who ate 5 magic cookies because “nothing (was) happening!”. He ended up puking for 24 hours. Not fun.

Be patient. It can take up to an hour to start feeling the psychoactive effects of edibles/ oils.

 

I’m just gonna make a quick note about CBD oils and using them topically.  I sometimes put it in my hair and in my scalp. I don’t know if it does anything but my hair feels soft. Keep in mind that CBD does have anti bacterial, anti-inflammatory, etc. properties that could help with some dermal issues, but look into it more if you’re planning to use it.

And… If you’re feeling adventurous, try a little bit, just a little, during intimate times. yup. O.

 

The End.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Why Isn’t This Weed Getting Me High?

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Why Isn’t This Weed Getting me High?

So picture this…  it’s a quiet evening. You sprawl out on your couch with the television playing a mindless show in the background. You pick up a beautifully rolled joint. You admire the great job you did rolling it. You baptize it. Spark it. And you start smoking. You keep smoking and smoking and smoking… till your living room is partially hot-boxed.

You then ask yourself the most important question you’ve ever asked in your entire life…..

Why Isn’t This Weed Getting Me High?

One of two things could be happening here.

1. You’re smoking oregano (apparently that happens!)

OR

b. You’re smoking weed that contains high CBD and low THC.

Either way it sucks because you’re not getting high.

 

To avoid unfortunate situations such as this, you need to

KNOW YOUR WEED!

Due to the complexity of weed and scientific jargon that I cannot comprehend or pronounce, I’m going to break it down to the basics. In my opinion, there are 3 important variables when choosing your strain. Please note that the following are mostly personal opinions, not fact, but can be considered fact because my opinions are high valuable, in my opinion.

Anyway here it is…

The 3 most important factors when choosing the right strain for the right purpose.

  1. THC/ CBD %
  2. Sativa/ Hybrid/ Indica
  3. Method of consumption

 

Follow my blog for specifics on ‘The Weed Trinity’. I should be writing this blog at some point, soon-ish.

Suicidal, with a Side of Playful

 

I had just awakened from a nap in the passenger seat of my friend, Sarah’s, car  (I nap A LOT! I’m practically a cat. Plus the meowing. I’m most definitely a cat on some spiritual level).

“How are you feeling?” Sarah asked. The usual social worker ‘constant check-ins’.

Suicidal, with a side of playful!” I responded cheerily.

Sarah who also has a dark sense of humour as do most of my close friends, laughed hysterically along with me. It was extremely funny to us in the moment.

But suicidal ideation is NEVER a joke.

So why was I making such jokes?

Realization: It wasn’t a joke.

I was just stating fact but framing it as a joke, as I often do.

See, I am constantly suicidal. This does not mean that I always want to hurt myself, or that I constantly feel hopeless, and most importantly, no it is not a concern at all that I would do something to hurt myself. PUT THE PHONE DOWN 911 does not have to be called!!!!!! (this time).

What I mean when I say this is simply;

I’ve been suicidal for a long time, as part of my depression. For as long as I can remember. So when I say, suicidal, I don’t quite mean that I WANT to, but the thought always lingers, pops-up to say “HI!”,  once in a while. But to be clear, I know for a fact 100% that I would never act on any self-harming behaviours. Getting to this point of clarity has been a long rough ride, but 100% worth it. I can finally be myself now (for the most part).

 

The stigma attached to suicide is SO extremely harmful. I cringe when people say things like, “That’s just the easy way out”.  Let’s be real for 1 second. Picture yourself sitting on your bed with a bottle of pills, or staring down from the roof of a building…. does it seem easy?

In my humble opinion, if someone has decided to do something as scary as taking their own life, it can only mean there’s something scarier in life they don’t quite know how to deal with  (I did say I have a lot of opinions in my first blog. If you haven’t read it, it’s not so good, I wouldn’t recommend it).

 

Quick story from the memory box!

About 15 years ago, when I was young and full of angst, I took a bunch of pills (do not try this at home, this is not a joke, if you ever feel like this pick up the phone and call a crisis hotline or a trusted person. There are supports out there! Openly talking about it is important. Your feelings or thoughts are NOT BAD, they are there for a reason so explore that reason with a professional). Sorry I digressed for a moment but the little ramble was necessary. I can’t say it enough…

ALWAYS reach out for supports! 

So getting back to what I was saying about taking a bunch of pills. I realized it was a turning point for me. I realized that I didn’t want to end my life, I just wanted a new beginning. I wanted a life free from depression, pain, hopelessness, low self-esteem; the list goes on. That all I really wanted was CHANGE. So that’s what I started doing. The depression and anxiety were so debilitating that I wanted to end my life, instead of reaching out for supports. I didn’t want to talk about it. I didn’t know who to talk to about it. But more so, I didn’t want to be judged.

This was 15 years ago, and things have changed since then. There is more access to supports, especially online.

I did not reach out for professional supports when this happened. Even though I was hospitalized for overdosing, no one offered mental health supports, and I was too afraid of stigmatization to ask. Luckily, even back then, I had good friends who supported me the best they could. I had a few friends who were going through similar issues. We found comfort and understanding in each other. The first step though, was reaching out, and being okay with having an open, honest conversation; with myself, and with a few trusted friends.

Fifteen years later, here I am. in the field of social work, giving people in similar situations support, and most of all, hope. I thought it was going to be difficult asking someone if they experience suicidal thoughts. Even saying the word suicide seemed taboo at first. I quickly realized that the easiest way of asking was just asking… simple as that.

Talk about it openly. Normalize that these thoughts happen! Figure out where they stem from.

 

Now:

My response to Sarah made me think about why today I am SO SURE that these thoughts  I experience as background noise, aren’t concerning. The biggest contributing factor is; positive support. I know for FACT that should I ever feel close to acting on thoughts, I can call anyone in my circle of support, and I would be talked off the ledge, in a literal sense of course. Having positive supports that you can trust is key.

 

I’ve also realized through my journey of healing ,that change starts with the SELF. I’ve realized that the way I speak to myself has drastically changed from hopeless and demeaning, to accepting and supportive. Healthy self-talk is key.

Be kind to yourself. As I like to say..

‘Treat yourself the way you treat others’. – melissa john

(I just created my own quote.. I think I like it. I might keep it. We’ll see.)

 

I also realize that I’ve applied Cognitive Behavioural therapy (CBT) concepts to myself as a work hazard. It has helped me improve my self-esteem, and decrease the intensity and length of my bouts of depression. Yes, it still does happen. I still feel hopeless at times, but now I tell myself “Accept these feelings, don’t fight them. It’s only harder when you fight them. Just know that these feelings WILL pass”. Also look up Mindfulness techniques; I find them helpful for coping while I am experiencing negative thoughts or feelings.

 

I just wanted to share these thoughts/ramblings because it is important to talk about suicide. It is important to start that conversation openly. Feel free to contact me if you want to talk. Post comments if you want to start a discussion.

Positive vibes!  Be inspirational.