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New Year and Thank You Message

I have historically enjoyed this time of year. I love the fall and celebrating the Jewish New Year holds great meaning for me. When I think of what I want for myself in this new year, all I can think of is health. Health for my family and friends and for me. I am not sure I can describe what I have been through in the past year but words that come to mind are: hell, pain, misery. While I would like to just feel competent and happy-ish, I have to settle for simply “better.” My mental health is much better than it was a few months ago and I am thankful for that and for the people who helped me get to this point. I am still fighting and continue to work on the medications. I will continue to have “maintenance” ECT once a month into the winter. I will also continue my hard work in therapy which brings me places I never imagined (both good and bad, but mostly good). I may feel different, better, a little more at peace, but I will not have unrealistic expectations of making a grandiose and instant recovery. That will not happen. My recovery will continue on its upward trajectory with this new year or without it. Time is time and nothing can change that.

I do wish happiness and health for my family and my friends. I am so thankful for having them and they have supported me in more ways than I can list: a simple phone call, a text/email, a visit, driving me to ECT, etc. There is so much to be thankful for and many people to thank. You know who you are and my ongoing recovery would not be possible without you. It takes special people to drive you to ECT, for example, and continuously make you laugh and put you at ease.  This week I am thinking of all of you and wish you all peace, health and happiness. Not only do I consider myself lucky to have you all in my life but I feel as if I won the lottery!

I will continue on my journey and am honored to have special people accompanying me along the way. My husband and daughter are my anchors and I am so thankful for them. They are what ground me when I feel overwhelmed and what calms me at the end of the day.

Shanah Tovah. A Happy and Sweet New Year.

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ECT Saved My Life

http://www.kveller.com/blog/parenting/electroconvulsive-therapy-saved-my-life-helped-me-be-myself-again/
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Sometimes it Feels Good to take a Risk


Every day we take risks…that is what life is all about. I think we should take more risks, though. For example, this past weekend I participated in a storytelling event called Speak Up in Hartford. I sent a pitch of a story (theme was “bad romance”) and it was accepted. I then wrote up a script and got in front of about 100 people and told my story (only 6 minutes). 
This was a risk, but at the same time, it wasn’t. I enjoy speaking in front of groups and am comfortable doing so. The issue was that I am still suffering from depression and that made me anxious about speaking in front of a group. What if they noticed my shaking hands (from medication)? What if they noticed that my mouth was very dry (from medication)? Even though I beat up on myself the next day, thinking I did not do well, I am now able to feel good about it. I took a risk at a not so great time in my life and I got through it. 
Sometimes we have to step outside of our comfort zones and stir things up. This was especially important for me since I have felt rather static these past few months. This gave me focus and responsibility. I knew it was worth it when I looked at my husband as I finished and he gave me a huge grin…he was proud of me. I thought my heart would explode, as I felt it emanating from him. This risk was worth it as my self-esteem was raised as a result and my love for my husband grew even more.
Why don’t women take more risks? I do mean “safe” risks, not daredevil kind of risks. I think we get so stuck in our own heads, it is difficult to stray, especially as we get older. If you have children, then that takes away so much of our “free” time, when could we do something “out of the box?” 
We need to take time out for ourselves, do something to surprise people, but mostly to surprise ourselves. I felt free after I told my story the other night and it was a good feeling. I did something that was a bit outside of my realm and I lived through it. The best part of taking a risk is the great feeling you get for putting yourself “out there.” I think this is imperative in terms of personal growth.  It also reminds me not to waste time on the small things. I don’t want to expend time on the minutiae of life that, in the end, really does not matter.
So, get out there and do something exciting or fun or just meaningful to you. One option that is very hot right now is a boudoir photo shoot. This is one idea to really put yourself out there and be in the moment. Do something that makes you happy and challenges you, in mind and body. And, yes, I may know about the boudoir photo shoot from experience.