17. You Still Have US – SADIM Day #8 – #Blog4MH

Chosen Song:

Don’t Give Up by Peter Gabriel & Kate Bush

Video:

Chosen lyrics:

We were wanted all along

Don’t give up
‘Cause you have friends
Don’t give up
You’re not beaten yet
Don’t give up
I know you can make it good….

Don’t give up
You still have us
Don’t give up
We don’t need much of anything
Don’t give up
‘Cause somewhere there’s a place
Where we belong
Rest your head
You worry too much
It’s going to be alright
When times get rough
You can fall back on us
Don’t give up
Please don’t give up
Don’t give up
You’re not the only one
Don’t give up
No reason to be ashamed
Don’t give up
You still have us
Don’t give up now
We’re proud of who you are”
Relation:
So, I was going to go with a slew of Shawn Mendes, but I had this song stuck in my head instead, so I decided to go with this one. I still have yet to download it properly and put it on my iPod, but for now, I have enjoyed it while I’ve been in troubles while I had my laptop with me ๐Ÿ™‚
I highlighted all the parts that really stood out for me and I believe I found this song from one of those suicide prevention song lists that are around on the Internet ๐Ÿ™‚
Hopefully you enjoy it too! That’s all I’ve got!
Chosen emoticon:

โ˜๏ธโ˜๏ธโ˜๏ธ = clouds!

16. Recovery A to Z Challenge. E is for Expectations – #Blog4MH

I am back with another post! I meant to do this post Saturday, but as it turned out, my parents and I stayed out later than expected. :3 We got to see some doggos though, although I didn’t feel any particular ‘click’ with them. They were definitely cute and adorable but the trip wore on me. Which is fitting for this post!

If you would like to read more of this challenge from me, feel free to search through or look through the #blog4MH category on my page ๐Ÿ™‚

Now, let’s get started!


E is for Expectations

Google defines expectation as:

a belief that someone will or should achieve something.

[Cue: I went to check twitter to see what was up and then I wound up getting disappointed and wrote my 14th post. So… yeah.]

Next day! And I am STILL not ready to tackle this post! GAH!

Which, maybe is more fitting than I am expecting….

Sometimes in our recovery journeys we have to lower or adjust our expectations. Sometimes we set our expectations too high and they are not achievable for us.

I know for myself that I tend to have a habit of reaching for the mountains when I can barely handle the climb itself. That is, I tend to set my expectations too high, or, maybe worse I set them to the standard of what I could normally have achieved without having any mental health conditions.

For me now, that reality is wavering. Now, it’s up to me and those around me to adjust my expectations to what I can actually achieve given the struggles and mayhem I go through.

I’m still far from good at it, though, and yet one day I think I’ll get better at it. For instance, before I used to be able to cram out a paper under an hour but if I don’t have it outlined nowadays, I’ll sit with anxiety and doubt that I can get it done longer than what it would take me to just write the piece out.

That’s why I find outlining and timing myself to be the best route to take–I will give myself a time limit say 15 minutes for one paragraph and my goal is to achieve that by said time. I often get it under it, even!

Additionally, I need to remind myself to be more forgiving (which you may just see in the next post!). I basically need to cut myself more slack! I make a lot of victories and accomplishments each day, and getting hung up on the ‘should’s’ of the days is damaging on one end and silly on another.

This also came into practice on Saturday. When I saw the little doggos at that event (after we finally arrived after much traffic and then confusion and snide remarks) it’s like all my homework I’ve been avoiding just came and smacked me in the face. All of the responsibilities and expectations became more real than ever before and I couldn’t run away from them. All of the doubt started to erode into my brain and I realized how inept I was at conversing with the adoption agency–preferring to just pet the doggos themselves.

In reality, it wasn’t so bad. But my perception was off. I didn’t want to continue being out after that, but I had to, I had already made plans for it and agreed upon it and we were already there anyways.

What I needed then was time. Time to let the thoughts run away from me and even time to discuss what had happened briefly to my parent that way I could let it go further than I was able to on my own.

My expectations were too high and then I had to adjust them. In the end, we agreed that Pepsi (a Chihuahua and dachshund mix) was too much like Bayya and we’d like a more medium sized doggo.

I want one that’s cuddly and my parents want one that can also be left alone for a while. It’s a balancing act that I’m not sure we’ll manage to find, but hey, there are a few more events happening in the future. ๐Ÿ™‚ We’ll find ourselves a doggo. And I’ll get myself through the summer.

It will all work out. I’ve just got to believe in that.

 

Thank you for reading!

See, even this worked out, too! ๐Ÿ™‚ โค โค โค

 

 

15. You Are Enough โ€“ SADIM Day #7 โ€“ #Blog4MH

Song Choice:

You Are Enough by Sleeping At Last

Video:

Chosen Lyrics:

You’re enough, you’re enough, you are enough,these little words somehow they’re changing us. You’re enough, you’re enough, you are enough, so let our shadows fall away like dust…

When we grew up,
Our shadows grew up too.
But theyโ€™re just old ghosts
That we grow attached to.
The tragic flaw is that they hide the truth”

Relation to lyrics:

I recently found Sleeping At Last again, after many months, even a couple of years, since I’d heard their song ‘Turning pages’ in the Twilight series movie (I know, I know). Even so, I’ve came across these songs and knew I had to mention all of them for sure. So it’s not even just one song by them that I love, but all of them. They’re just so poignant and beautiful, lyrically and musically and it just makes me content.

This song in particular is good to listen to, I think, because it hones in that message of being enough. Plus I love the imagery of our shadows falling away like dust ๐Ÿ™‚ (Maybe I’ll do something with that idea!)

So, now is the time for the other songs!

I just came across this one today, so I just like the message that overall things are okay, even when they’ve been shit. Gratitude still and all that jazz. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Chosen lyrics:

You taught me the courage of stars before you left.
How light carries on endlessly, even after death.
With shortness of breath, you explained the infinite.
How rare and beautiful it is to even exist….

Iโ€™d give anything to hear
You say it one more time,
That the universe was made
Just to be seen by my eyes.

Warning: Long build up to the words in this song, so just sit back and bask in its glory!

I just love this song and everything about it. โค โค โค

Chosen lyrics:

I will always hold you close,
But I will learn to let you go.
I promise Iโ€™ll do better.

With every heartbeat I have left
I will defend your every breath,
And Iโ€™ll do better.

โ€™ะกause you are loved.
You are loved more than you know.
I hereby pledge all of my days
To prove it so.
Though your heart is far too young to realize
The unimaginable light you hold inside.”

 

Chosen lyrics:

“Donโ€™t be, donโ€™t be afraid
Our mistakes they were bound to be made
But I promise you Iโ€™ll keep you safe….

And darkness will be rewritten
Into a work of fiction, youโ€™ll see…”

 

Chosen emoticon:

๐Ÿก๐Ÿก๐Ÿก = house with a garden

 

Thanks everyone!! ๐Ÿ˜€

14. No, I’m 100% a Human Being – #Blog4MH

What’s wrong with this picture?

100 OCD

Ah, that’s right, it claims as a “quiz” to pinpoint whether the participant can tell the differences between various shapes and which one is the odd on out. It’s meant to determine one’s “OCD Radar”.

Let’s back up.

There’s about three things wrong with that assumption.

  1. Does an OCD Radar even actually exist? Is this meant to be a lighthearted fun “quiz”? Am I missing something? Because it looks like another disappointment of the human race to me. It looks like another joke at the expense of people’s suffering-at MY suffering. Am I supposed to laugh? Because the ONLY thing this “quiz” does is perpetuate the stigma regarding mental health.
  2. If you want to raise awareness by some “quiz” that’s not even diagnostic-nor could it ever be-why not include some information and tips for dealing with OCD? Why not link a suicide hotline? Why not provide information to the International OCD Foundation? The UK OCD foundation? Why not that?
  3. I am NOT 100% “OCD” I AM NOT a diagnosis. I am MYSELF. I am an artist, I am a friend, I am a daughter, I am a lover of gazebos and nature and dogs and cats and the universe, and music, and the Marvel Cinematic Universe. I like fanfiction, I like creative writing, I am a blogger, I am a Youtuber. I am Raquel. I am NOT the OCD. Don’t you ever dare to suggest otherwise, because you will be wrong.

 

Instead, I’ll do what you failed to do: Source of Our Pain

I’ll talk about mental health–mine, yours, everybody’s. I’ll provide links and resources here. I’ll remind all of you out there, that you are not alone. That I know OCD is a real big asshole, and we all just need to stand up to it and tell it to FUCK OFF. Because it doesn’t get to steal our lives. It doesn’t get to win. Not us. Not our souls. Not us human beings. We are always ourselves first, any diagnosis comes secondary. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise.

International OCD Foundation , OCD UK

You can find more information about OCD in these articles: Understanding OCD

Finding Help for OCD 1 , About OCD , For Families dealing with OCD

There are also Youtubers you can find who discuss their recovery journeys from OCD, as well as general mental health Youtubers.

There are blogs you can also find, mine being one of them.

There are also support groups online/offline.

You are not alone. Your pain is real. OCD is real. I know that, you know that, it’s on us to educate as many other people willing to listen, too.

Suicide Prevention Hotline (USA): 1800 273 TALK (8255)

USA Call 2 Talk (MA) 877 211 6277

Samaritans (USA) 877 870 4673

Worldwide hotline numbers: Resource 2

imalive.org

Crisis chat/text lines (from NSPL and others can be found through Google)

Check out more of my blog posts regarding mental health and suicide NOT being jokes: Part 1 and Part 2 can be found as a pingback in the comments there.

I’m anxious this will get some backlash, not from our WordPress community but for what I said about it on Twitter before I could work on this post. Oh well. It’s too important to not talk about.

And if you’re new here–maybe from Twitter–I’m personally invested in this issue. I live with OCD and no, it’s not organizational or cleaning, or based on fucking shape’s distances. I suffer. I exist. I am human, first and foremost. I have goals, dreams, ideas, family, friends. People care about me. I care about me. And I refuse to be silent.

Fuck the silence.

I am a survivor radiating badassery. And I will not put up with this bullshit. Not on my watch.

 

Thank you. โค โค โค

 

 

13. Even the Brave Depend on Someone – SADIM Day #6 = #Blog4MH

Song Choice:

Walk You Home by Karmina

Video:

Chosen Lyrics:

“Slow down, what’s on your mind?
It’s alright, I’m on your side
I hate to see your injury, I wish that you could transfer all
Your pain to me
Stay here, it’s ok to cry
Let me, help you make it right
Let’s turn up a radio, let the bands remind you that you’re not
Alone
We all get low

Even the brave may depend on someone
The moon only shines with the help of the sun”

Relation:

I was actually going to cover another song by this band (which I do below) first but I just, within minutes, stumbled upon this one above and knew I had to make it the first mentioned piece. I really just like the idea of walking someone home or even walking them to help and being there for them and reminding them that they aren’t alone and that someone (even many people) are rooting for them. ๐Ÿ™‚ It also reminds me of a poem I wrote for a friend once, if I can remember to, I will upload it on here later this weekend. ๐Ÿ™‚ It was a similar concept.

I also like the reassurances and the mention of listening to songs where other people describe their pain or their hopes–it’s amazing what music can do for us and it’s kind of weird to think about when you take a step back and consider it. Hehe.

Here’s the first song I found by them and was actually going to feature first until I found the one above.

Song:

All The King’s Horses by Karmina

Video:

Chosen Lyrics:

“I knock the ice from my bones, try not to feel the coldAll the kings horses and all the kings men couldn’t put me back together again. Blind but I’m still aliveThere is a reason I’m still standing.”

I just really like this song ๐Ÿ™‚ I’ll have to update you guys on whether it helps me when I’m struggling and I listen to it. ๐Ÿ™‚

Sorry this post is a little rushed, I want to make sure I do a post today and my Mom and I are heading out to go to some adoption events today! ๐Ÿ˜€

I’ll be back later for some posts! ๐Ÿ™‚ โค

 

“Blood Wounds” | [OLD] Book Review

Blood Wounds by Susan Beth Pfeffer

So, this is an OLD DRAFT of a book review I literally was meant to put up in August 2016. Therefore because I don’t seem to have any notes on this subject matter, I’m going based off my memory and what quotes I chose from this novel. Bear with me and watch out, probably some spoilers ahead!


SUMMARY:

*TRIGGER WARNING* Cutting mentioned in this book.

Our main character is Willow in this fictional story. A girl who has two step-sisters and a step-father, who soon learns that her biological father has murdered his wife and two young girls and that he is on the run to find Willow and kill her too. It’s never explained what caused him to do these murders or what happened in him to have led to them, but I thought this was a pretty excellent book about finding one’s family ties, learning about one’s self and their identity, Willow expressing her need for help by the end of the book (she’s been cutting to self-soothe), and an interesting take on what it must be like for family members of people who are murderers.


RECOMMENDATION SCORE:

4/5 Father killers


QUOTES:

  1. “I was alone, as I was so many nights, surrounded by my family but alone with my thoughts” – p. 18

Relatable quote here, and I feel this could apply to other fanfic ideas I have about characters going through shit in life. ๐Ÿ™‚ (Nicely said, Raquel, nicely said)

2. “‘I’ll ask my mother,’ I said, knowing that I wouldn’t. I’d learned a long time ago not to ask for the things I couldn’t have” 0 p.21

I definitely thought that was weird and sigh worthy when I read this book.

Also, there was no trigger warning about the cutting in this book, which kind of irritated me. I mean a little bit could be expected from the title, but I distinctly remember the scene where she first cuts herself, she goes to the basement (and I’m thinking okay, maybe it’s a nice basement), goes to the radiator (that’s a little odd) and then cuts herself with something she hid there (and I was like Well THAT escalated quickly!). So yeah. I didn’t want to quote it here for obvious reasons but uh, I pretty much did anyways. ๐Ÿ˜› I was also telling Elisa about this book not long ago so the details are still a bit fresh in my mind. Still a good book though! But that’s why it’s only 4/5.

3. “I felt as though the whole house had been picked up by a tornado, that it and everything I’d ever known was twisting out of the solar system” 0 p. 34

4. “Because that’s the kind of family I come from. We’re very polite. Even when people die on our doorsteps, we remember to say please and thank you and excuse me” – p. 69

5. “‘Don’t tell me what means nothing!’ I shouted. ‘You don’t know. You just ask me to pretend all the time. Well, I won’t. I’m through pretending. They were my family. They’re a part of me'” 0 p. 76

This is when Willow wants to go visit her biological father’s home state to learn more about him and what happened and if she’s anything like the monster he was. Essentially.

 

6. “‘And whose fault is that? Who kept me from them?'” – p. 77

7. “‘You got me away. I’m alive because you got me away. Let me say goodbye to my sisters. They didn’t have you. They didn’t get away'” – p, 78

Ouch.

8. “If I didn’t know him, if I didn’t know what had become of him, would I have stared into those eyes and thought about the pain they could inflict? Would I have said ‘those are the eyes of a killer,’ or would I simply have thought he was squinting, uncomfortable posing for a picture?” – p, 91

Willow is looking at her biological father’s yearbook photo.

9. “‘I guess I don’t belong here any more than I belong at home'” – p. 94

Oh, Willow….

10. “‘Without rules, we’d run around fighting each other, not caring what anybody thinks. Sometimes rules can seem arbitrary, and sometimes unfair, but they give us our boundaries, and we need to respect them'” 0 p. 102

11. “I couldn’t bring myself to define Budge, to put a label on him. Because whatever he was, I was his daughter, and whether I loved him or not, whether I even knew him or not, he was a part of me, so entwined with my body and my soul that he could never be disentangled” – p. 106

12. “We’re a happy family, I said to myself, closing the yearbook and piling it on top of the others. We have to be. Because if I didn’t have that to believe in, then I had nothing left at all” – p. 107

13. “I’d spent so much of my life claiming things were fine when they weren’t that it surprised me to hear the truth come from my mouth” – p. 108

Remember what FINE stands for right? Fucked up, insecure, neurotic and emotional. You’re welcome.

14. “We were a family of secrets. I’d kept my share. One more wouldn’t hurt” – p. 135

15. “‘I do what I need to. I made it through yesterday and I’m alive today'” – p. 170-171

One of Willow’s siblings saying how they make it through living on their own, relatively homeless, from what I can vaguely remember.

16. “‘But I’m not ready for you to be my sister. I’m sorry, Willa, but I’m not.’ ‘I’m not Sweetbriar. You can’t just discard me'” 0 p. 193

Oh yes! From one of her step-sisters, and Willow stands up for herself and it was a great moment! ๐Ÿ™‚

17. “‘This razorblade is my friend, my family. It’s what I turn to when I’m scared you won’t love me anymore'” – p. 240

18. “‘I couldn’t ask! I cut because I couldn’t ask for anything'” – p. 240

19. “‘They didn’t know anything. That’s why I cut. So no one would know anything'” 0 p. 241

This is when Willow comes clean to her parents and asks for help to see a therapist to stop her cutting.

20. “‘Mom? Not for Budge. For me.’ ‘For you. For me. For all of us” – p. 245

*Sniffle* This reminds me of MCU Loki. XD

And yeah, that’s about all!!

Don’t be to surprised if my future writing style for book reviews changes. Maybe it’s because I had nothing written down for this one but I feel a change may be in order…maybe I can even make a logo for them! Oooo. ๐Ÿ™‚

Any who, I hope you enjoyed. I have about 10 other ones to keep putting out…. Oh vie.

 

The Photographic Journey

Photo Challenge #2 – Wanderlust


Hey everyone! Back for another photography sharing round ๐Ÿ™‚ So while I took photos of doggos on Sunday, I also got some new photos of some purple blooming trees, and would like to share some of those photos here in contrast to some travel photos I took nearly three years ago in Peru, South America. ๐Ÿ™‚

Let’s jump in!

Photos of the fancy tree:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Some of the fancy larger individual images (because they’re extra nice and typical of my photography so you should all see it big and large) ๐Ÿ™‚

IMG_3938IMG_3940IMG_3945

IMG_3946IMG_3947IMG_3950IMG_3954IMG_3958IMG_3962IMG_3968IMG_3971

 

YAY FLOWERS!

And now for some highlights from Peru:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Phew! That was a LOT!

As you can probably tell, when it comes to travel (something I’m actually not big on, I know, big surprise, since pretty much every human being on earth wants to travel) I don’t like doing the obvious photographs, I like the little things and noticing them and getting artistic photos in. ๐Ÿ™‚ A lot of my work I try to make things thought provoking or have ideas for creative writing behind it or can make it out of the photograph.

Any who though, that’s it from me! Now to work on MORE POSTS!

๐Ÿ™‚

12. Recovery A – Z Challenge. D is for Desire #blog4MH

Check out more of this A – Z challenge in my #blog4mh category at the bottom of my blog page! ๐Ÿ™‚ Or, search for it! ๐Ÿ˜€


So, we’ve made it to letter D! For this, I decided to do D for Desire.

Desire is defined by Google as:

a strong feeling of wanting to have something or wishing for something to happen.

I believe it’s important to have desire in our recovery journeys. Without desire, we miss out on having the fuel that powers forth our many dreams. Therefore, with desire we can likely achieve more of what we want to do and make larger strides in our accomplishments which helps to boost our mood and overall recovery.

Does that bullshit sound about right? XD

I kid, I kid. I genuinely think desire is important though. It’s important to want to have more than what we currently have, especially when we believe and are aware that we deserve to have more and better in our lives.

For me, desire is coming out in a few different ways in my recovery.

For one, I have the desire to write lots of fanfiction. Hehehe, really though, wanting to write my stories and knowing that they’re particularly special because I’m the writer behind them inspires me to keep going in this life so that I can fulfill and finish them the way they were meant to be. (Which also means I have multiple projects ongoing).

I also have the desire to write books in my future. That is something I want to explore more of, and to create artwork books and workbook’s and such. ๐Ÿ™‚

I also have the desire to make #RecoveryHome and Recovery Restoration a thing.

I have a desire for reading books, and just LOVE when I get to go to the library and pull out like ten books to read for the next few weeks. ๐Ÿ˜€

I have a desire for me to make it to my better days again, and I really want to achieve this. I’ve also been thinking of recovery not as sustained good days with handling and managing bad days, but that each moment where I’m okay is a recovery moment, and that by collecting these good moments I am rebuilding my recovery journey. Because based on moments, I have a lot more of those than I have sustained chronological recovery time.

And my therapy has been helping me again and my desire to not be a hypocrite has kept me safe even when I’ve had struggles, hard times and urges lately.

My desire for a doggo is also helping me, too. Andย  I finally get to see some doggos this weekend, hooray! The week could not have gone by any slower! Eugh.

I have desires to make art that also keep me going, keep me busy and keep me engaged.

I have a desire for stationery and shopping in general (hehe) and a desire to listen to more and new music (particularly finding bands on my own that I’d enjoy).

 

That’s about all I’ve got for Desire! I hope you enjoyed this and I hope this piece stirs up some of your own desires for your recovery journey and what you may want out of life. ๐Ÿ™‚ โค โค โค

11. I Don’t have to Fight Alone – SADIM Day #5 #blog4MH

Welcome to day #5 of SADIM! If you’d like to see other posts about SADIM, check out the category folder I’ve made for it all the way at the bottom of my blog! Thanks everyone! ๐Ÿ™‚

Song Choice:

On My Own by Ashes Remain

Video:

Chosen lyrics:

There’s gotta be another way out
I’ve been stuck in a cage with my doubt
I’ve tried forever getting out on my own.

Bring me out
Come and find me in the dark now
Everyday by myself I’m breaking down
I don’t wanna fight alone anymore
Bring me out
From the prison of my own pride
My God,
I need a hope I can’t deny
In the end I’m realizing I was never meant to fight on my own.

I don’t wanna be incomplete
I remember what you said to me
I don’t have to fight alone

Relation to these lyrics:

Another band I recently found this week, this is the first song I heard by them and from what I can gather, they’re a slightly religious band. I say slightly because the next song has some religious undertones but I don’t find it so prominent that it’s obvious, for me I’m able to just ignore it. Any who though, I liked the aesthetic of this lyric video (album art and the video art itself helps me to decide whether I’ll be interested in the song) and I liked the message behind it as well. It reminds me that in this battle of mental health we are not on our own, and we are not alone. It reminds me that I’m not just one individual going through this, that the people around me are going through it too. So that’s cool.

And I like the idea that there’s hope involved in this piece, too. ๐Ÿ™‚

Honorable Mention:

Here for a Reason by Ashes Remain

Video:

Chosen lyrics:

“You’re not forgotten
You’re not alone
You think you’re worthless, but you’re worth it

Every time that you wake up breathing
Every night when you close your eyes
Every day that your heart keeps beating
There’s purpose for your life
So don’t give up
Don’t lay down
Just hold on
Don’t quit now
Every breath that you take has meaning
You are here for a reason

Relation to these lyrics:

I listened to this song recently when I was dealing with some difficult times with the doggo situation, and it really helped to calm me down and keep things into perspective. It helped me a lot to problem solve, so I had to mention it here, too, of course. ๐Ÿ™‚

Again, slight undertones of religion within the song itself but I just ignore it. You could think of it as the universe being personified too, if that helps you.

There’s also this song that I just like:

There’s a couple of other songs by them that I’m still dipping my toes into, but for now, these are the main two I want to promote! ๐Ÿ™‚

And of course, the emoticon:

๐Ÿ’ฎ๐Ÿ’ฎ๐Ÿ’ฎ = flowers!

 

10. Mental Health & Pets – #blog4MH

This is a post I’ve been thinking about writing from the start of the weekend. If you know me in real life, you will not be surprised to read about this post. If you don’t know me in real life, don’t worry, I won’t shut up about it so you’ll hear about it often enough.

I really, really want a dog. My old pup, Bella (or Bayya as I often called her) who was an Italian greyhound, passed away nearly two years ago. We haven’t had another dog since. My parents have both had dogs in the past, and we’ve had other pets like hamsters and a couple of fish before, too. You guys know that we’ve had Nova, and that we have Galaxy right now, too.

IMG_4314

IMG_4348

Bayya had three legs and cataracts for the last couple of years of her life (the eye problems, not the three legs). These photos were taken in 2013.

IMG_4382

Bayya’s full size.

img_00003418

Mr. Nova. February 2016 – November 2016. A cuddly little dude who gave us lickies.

IMG_00003584 Upd

Mr. Galaxy. November 2016 – present. A fancy marking Chinese hamster, he doesn’t like getting picked up too much, and is still pretty high energy. Maybe when he gets older though… ๐Ÿ™‚

(I’ll include more photos of Bayya at the end, because I have more photos of her (folders upon folders!!) and yeah.) Also I have *NEW* photos of some of the doggos at the playtime park. ๐Ÿ™‚

ANYWHO!

Back to the point.

When Bayya got sick a couple years ago, she made it to her 12th birthday until passing away a couple of days later, I was so able to push aside all of my mental health garbage bins of bullshittery to be by her side. I genuinely made NO time for the OCD. It was all about being with her while she was struggling.

And I KNOW there is research out there that’s been done that shows the positive benefit of having an animal and how it affects those of us with mental health conditions.

The problem is convincing my parents of this and other factors.

That’s my current problem: I want a dog but my parents don’t. One of my parents is willing to go look at dogs online and with me this weekend and a couple other times for adoption events but they’re pretty stubborn on letting up with their opinions.

Basically, one of my parents is pulling the whole “It’s our house” card and also wants me to be better and healthy before I get an animal involved in the picture. They don’t want to take care of the doggo, especially when I’m not doing well and am going through my dark days. They also think that even if I had a doggo, that when I’m at school and doing poor, how will that help me then?

And then there’s the whole ginormous responsibilities list of the doggo. We’d have to have a female doggo, it can’t be too old or too young (I’m still looking at puppies anyways), it has to learn how to go potty outside, what if it gets ticks? What if we get Lyme too? Who will take care of it when I’m at school? At work? When no one’s home? Will it be in a crate? Who will feed it? Where will it sleep? Will it bark incessantly? Will it chew on the furniture? Will it…What if…??

Thinking of all of this stress subconsciously is why I pulled out part of my brow on Sunday night. Now I’m doing better managing my stress so that doesn’t have to happen again (I’ve pulled a couple times since but not as extreme – and not to that brow).

The biggest argument they have is that I can barely take care of myself so how will I take care of another pet? (I must be honest, I’m struggling with the hamster).

 

So to deal with these stressors, and the stressor of school soon ending, I’ve been coping and avoiding by looking at my favorite doggos online. I use adopt-a-pet the most, but rescue-me is good too.

Some people have suggested I volunteer somewhere–but where? It’s about as useless information as trying to get a service dog (they cost hella more than I thought they would!) Although it’s cool what they have about psychiatric service dogs. I tweetered about that the other day.

 

My therapist told me to keep thinking about problem SOLVING in my session this week. So while my feelings are tumultuous about the idea of not getting a doggo this summer I have to just keep in mind that it will happen. Mainly, by thinking of it happening this summer. I’ve started to really imagine what it will be like to have a doggo again, and I really, really like it. I wish my parents would give me the opportunity to try it out, but they won’t. I think it could really help!! I could even have LESS mental health bullshit, it could PROGRESS my recovery…and still I sit with no doggo present.

I feel an emptiness inside for not having a dog. I enjoy the playtime stuff, don’t get me wrong, but I’ve been needing more of it lately than usual, or than before. It’s hard too ’cause it’s not like I can always go to a neighbor in my nearby area to just pet THEIR dog. Usually people want to make small talk more than what I’m interested in. I just want to pet dogs and have some company again. (Like all the time and at my disposal easily)

I really miss my Bayya. Even Nova, too.

I took them for granted when they were around. Because now they’re gone and I can’t have them back.

I see other people have two dogs, three, four! And it makes me jealous ’cause I can’t even have ONE!

I feel like an outsider without a dog. I can’t understand the funny things they do, except for remembering Bayya’s silly things. But Bayya isn’t here anymore… I really miss her. She was more my Mom’s dog though. I want my new dog to me more my dog.

 

I’m gonna just end it there. I’ve been crying enough already. I would show you guys some of the doggos I’m interested in, but I’m thinking if I do they might get adopted sooner, and unless it’s me adopting them, I don’t want that. XD The cute ones always go first…

Here are some of the doggo pictures from last Sunday!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

And some of Bayya (but not all, I’ll do more in the future if you’d like):

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

I look forward to new photography adventures with my new dog to come, one day. I think they may even get me back INTO photography. Speaking of, I have another post to work on….

The story certainly isn’t over here. This post involved a mixture of grief of past pets and the hope for new ones. I really think it would help me, but only time will tell for sure. Until then, if you guys have any tips or tricks or could share your own stories of doing either well or poor with an animal and mental health conditions, please do share them!

Thanks everyone!