Journeyman's Row
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***  October 11, 2016  -  June 30, 2021  ***

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May Is Mental Health Month

Posted on May 21, 2017 at 1:00 AM

Welcome once again for the latest updates on my progress to promote mental health awareness. In just three days, I will be among the five presenters at the local Blair County Pennsylvania "May Is Mental Health Month" Conference. The significance of this event for me is that May 24th will be the first time I have ever given a speech to a captive audience about my own personal experiences with suicide, depression, anxiety, or Attention Deficit Disorder. Yes. The first time ever, and I assure you not the last time. Before I begin I need to go back less than a week for a more challenging development.

The issue I am referring to is an important part of dealing with mental health awareness and is a topic I have not discussed yet. The main reason for this is because I had not confronted the issue personally. Now it seems I have, at least in the early stages. How to confront and bridge the gap between my parents and my mental health concerns. I won't assume whether this essential milestone has been either positively accomplished or negative, but at the moment it seems more towards the latter. Everyone who knows me well cares much about my wellbeing and my parents are no exception. I know they care more than anyone. But we have not had much in the way of a dialogue about mental health in recent years, so I knew this would be challenging. In fact, I am referring to it as such because the outcome is unknown right now.

As a result, my steady progress writing my sixth and final mental health themed short story, "In Love & Fear"©, has hit a brick wall since last Tuesday. If you read between the lines you will realize why. There is no loss whatsoever of confidence in or determination for me to finish this story. The book writing project, "Just Before the Dawn"©, is also about ninety percent finished as well. I will not let challenges to my maturation get in the way. Unfortunately, this setback already puts me behind at least a week when I had hoped to finish everything by the end of this week. Not to worry. I will continue to push writing and then finishing the final story before I resume regular blogging for mental health advocacy. I can only hope all of you are as patient as can be with my delayed progress, and I want to thank you those who have been supportive thus far.

Pretty much anything significant right now that happens in my life will cause delays like this to happen. Given my emotional sensitivity to car accidents, if my parents were in one I would be distraught the more severe the accident was. If there was a death in the family I would need to take as much as two weeks depending. But I will continue.

Whether my parents, and possibly more of my relatives, are reading these posts now I want to repeat what I have been saying all along. This rise in my advocating mental health, as I heal my own issues at the same time, is not a waste of time and it is not an effort to dodge looking for, applying to, or obtaining any form of employment. Read my words: I am not avoiding the absolute priority of securing stable employment. As I keep telling my critics, I wake up every single day with my life flashing before my eyes. The number one thing that I am reminded of first is that I need to resolve my career indecision, get a stable job, and move my butt out of this house. End of line. For anyone who does not accept the gravity of this honesty and truth, I cannot help you.

I only hope my family as a whole can trust that I am making positive progress on all fronts with mental health, since October and November. I know the clock is ticking and I am not getting any younger. How do I know this? Because I have been miserably suffering from Chronophobia which is a major part of what kick started my depression in the first place. That summer of 1994 is one that I will never forget. Neither will each day I get older and still live with my parents. I am ashamed to no end for still being here, even if my own flesh and blood parents are acceptant of my circumstances. On the other hand, I am far more positive, hopeful, and determined to finally resolve that issue now than ever. My career indecision is the toughest part of my mental illness and has yet to be resolved. Twenty three years I have been dealing with it. Two suicide experiences were caused, in part, by this. Believe me, tough love is not what I need right now and neither would someone not as mentally tough as me could handle it either.

Even though I haven't resolved my Anuptaphobia, I have managed to keep it at bay while I tend to the more important issues. I am making progress. I know I sound like a lazy bum or that I am living the life 'a Riley, but I am not. The one thing that has set me apart and kept me from being lazy-minded all this time is because instead of feeling lazy when I wasn't working I felt increasingly guilty about it. Yes, I've done part of my anxiety and depression to myself. On the other hand though, I cannot control anyone's actions but my own. So I don't know what to expect in the weeks and months to come. You all have my sincerest assurances that I will continue to do my best and give it the most as I have been since October and November. As soon as I finish, "In Love & Fear"©, I will post sooner than two week intervals to announce it here and on Facebook. Then I pray I can find a qualified editor and legitimate publishing company. I want this book out there so much it would take a freight train hitting a brick wall to describe the feeling.

As for the "May Is Mental Health Month" Conference, I am focused and mentally prepared to give my speech. For those interested in attending, due to the event structure I will be giving my speech three separate times during the Conference time frame. But don't just come for what I have to say. We have a most glorious and inspiring set of speakers whose presentations will make this year's Conference the best yet. I am a newbie, yes, but as I have been saying remember my name. This is not the last time you will hear from me. I read about singer and songwriter Chris Cornell's suicide just recently and had flashbacks to Robin Williams' tragic suicide. Starting this September, I intend to step up my game advocating much more boldly to fight suicide. Williams' suicide was enough. For every high profile or celebrity suicide, can you imagine how many regular people like you and me who commit suicide still and go unreported? This problem is not solved. The likes of social stigma and active peer pressure stand in the way but will soon get a fair opponent to match odds with them.


I know it seems as if I am facing a lot right now and I am buckling somewhat under the pressure. The measure of a man is what he does with power, Plato was quoted saying. I think the measure of me is how I face the coming adversity through the remainder of this year. If I pull through well enough, I should be in decent shape for the future. Hopefully. Pray for me though because we are all still human, after all. Thank you.

Categories: Inspirational, "Just Before the Dawn"©

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