Thumb Thursday #7: Moving in the Direction of My Dreams

I'm moving forwards! - THUMB - TT7 - 7.18.19


Question: What do you do when you have different people’s opinions fogging up the windshield of your car?

Answer: I don’t know, I haven’t gotten that far yet.

 

So, I have the chance to do a proper life update slash blog snazziness post and I’ll be honest with you, I really, really don’t like this particular thumb (and I’m aware it’s no longer Thursday but I’m also aware that I’ve been trying to write this post for the last two weeks and it’s getting out of hand and I’d really like to just get this over with and move forwards–no irony intended–and onto my next round of thumbs and their subsequent blog posts) but I’m here and that’s what matters, I suppose.

I’m here.

I like this idea, this concept, of “being someone.” That sentence, that concept, just holds so much weight for me. I use it briefly here and I have an upcoming thumb just dedicated towards it and I really, really love it. It really empowers and inspires me.

And recently I’ve been inspired.

Actually, in more ways than one…

Yesterday I did my Create Day versus Consume Day blog post with its own new thumbs. That was really, really cool. It was so nice to get back into blogging for a bit, even if towards the end it was getting incredibly monotonous and dragging on and on (more indicative to myself that I needed a break but was too all or nothing about it that I wanted to finish before I lost track of the Muse and where it was taking me).

But still, I did it. πŸ™‚

So, yes, I’ve been inspired in creating new things lately–Youtube videos, getting back into writing fanfics, graphic designing for flyers (if we’re lucky, I’ll include a slideshow for some NAMI related flyers for a Peer to Peer class I’ll be teaching in November (if you’re in the Randolph MA area, send me an email/message if you’re someone living with a mental health condition and wish to attend! It’s free!!!)), graphic designing for thumbs, blog posts, and more. A couple were painting/watercoloring some wood and just getting new art supplies. πŸ™‚ Shopping and hanging out with friends, too! πŸ˜€

All trades pursued while undertaking trainings at my new job, which I’ve named Amaryllis, I finally have a code name for it! πŸ™‚ Speaking of my job, I got the email early this week for certain that I’d be teaching the Peer to Peer class up in Randolph. It will be my first time teaching it and you know I’ve got to spend the next 2 weeks preparing and reading over and filling out all the binders and information since I’ve forgotten everything that went into it since I last got trained for it back in April 2019. XD

So there’s that.

But I’ll also be doing IOOV stuff too, here and there, so I officially have about 3 ongoing jobs. How I’m going to balance it all….heh heh heh, that’s the real challenge.

It’s gotten all in my mind in the last week about my dreams, my successes and where I want to be.

I don’t know if this will come as a shock or not but I really want to “be someone.” Again, we return to that theme. I want to be well-known and hopefully for the right reasons. I want to be a loud and proud advocate. I want my story to help others. I want my story to inspire others.

I want to go back to my roots–go out there and make a TEDtalk speech. I want to do maybe even public speaking as a whole. Maybe do some kind of motivational speeches. I want to use my story and my strengths and what I’ve gone through to help other people out there who may be struggling in silence. I want to remove the ugly tape stains that stigma leaves behind and I want others to help me do this process, the nitty gritty work, too.

I don’t want to be confined to a desk or, maybe even a laptop. I want to be like the next Kevin Hines just minus the intense suicide attempt. (Also, this is a good nudge to what next week’s topic will cover in Thumb Thursday, hint hint ;))

I feel much like an actress, unknown to the world around her: I feel like I’ve been waiting for my next big break. I’ve been waiting to be discovered.

And some things are falling into place.

There was a recovery based video filmed for Passages earlier this year, if you happen to remember that Youtube video I did about it or if I posted about it on my blog back in Feb this year…. That will be launching online soon. (I hope). I can probably even do like some type of reaction to it or something, if that’s something people would be interested in. Not sure how I’d film that though, but I’m willing to work with it!

I also want to do some more commentary pieces on this blog towards some of the things (like TEDtalks) that have inspired me, particularly the two that inspired me in the last week to even have any of these thoughts.

It’s like I’ve just been revived. It’s like I’ve just been rejuvenated. I feel all my dreams coming back into the forefront and I’m ready. I’m ready now. I’m ready to make them into my reality.

I really think that I can make a difference. I want to write a memoir, I want to write an art and recovery book, I want Recovery Home and Recovery Reinforcer and Recovery Restoration to become big time projects to help spread art therapy and recovery stories around the world. (Although I’ll settle for just MA for now ahaha). I want to be a beacon. I want to spread my positivity and kindness and compassion for others.

This all falls back to that one photo I took three years ago. I shared this story at program last Friday but I’ll refresh all of our memories now, too. A religion based club was doing a photo booth type thing on campus back in 2016 asking people who volunteered to contribute where they saw themselves in 5 years and what they’d be doing. They gave us a Sharpie to write it on our palm, took a photo and then put it up with all the others from other hands and other hearts and other lives that had been collected, so to speak.

This was mine:

IMG_00001935 Upd

I wanted to be sharing my story. I wanted for people to hear me. I wanted for people to see me. To see where I’ve been. To see where I’m at. To see where I’m going.

It’s how I ever started getting into advocacy. I saw my own NAMI IOOV presentation while in college (fall 2014) and the lessons I learned from brave souls telling their mental health journeys stuck with me even until today–so much so that I’ve used some of their words of wisdom in my own life, in my own art, in my own recovery, in words I pass on to my friends.

I got involved in NAMI, in advocacy, because of a book I never finished and a journal I equally never finished where one of the daily prompts was to take opportunities by the horns and do something to change your current circumstances. So I got involved in advocacy. I started writing articles in the newspaper. I became, I hope, a role model. To whomever read my work.

And I, I think I’d forgotten that. Somewhere along the way, I forgot why this spark of a flame was ignited within my soul. I forgot that I wanted to be more. I forgot about the reason why I speak, why I talk, why I say, “Hey I’m struggling and you can still struggle and still live a life worth living regardless.” I want to change something. The world, one person’s world, the universe. I don’t want to necessarily limit my dreaming. πŸ™‚

I…. I want to be more than I am right now.

Isn’t that what we all want?

There’s so much I want to do. So much I want to live to do.

I guess that somewhere along the way, I forgot why. Why I do what I do. I just got so used to doing it that I stopped thinking about the impact I could be having on others. And maybe part of that was because I wasn’t in a stable mindset, certainly not a stability emotionally that I’ve now been in for many months.

I forgot the reason why I stood up. I forgot that I wanted something in the world to be different because of my efforts. I forgot that I wanted to be something greater. I forgot that I had grown tired of waiting on the sidelines for some other bystander to stand up and fight, until I realized, well, if no one else is (or few else are) going to do it, then I guess it’s up to me.

That’s why I stand. That’s why I sacrifice my name, my identity, to place a name and a face to the struggles of mental health conditions. I knew it might kill my job placements. I knew it might interfere with other tasks and accomplishments I wanted to make in my life.

But I did it anyways.

Because I knew it mattered. I knew the Greater Good was out there. I knew I had to speak up, because if I waited too long, if I wanted in silence, I knew it might never come to exist.

So, I stand. I stand tall and I let my voice be heard. Because maybe, yeah, maybe it’s going into a Void at the moment, but I know that maybe it can be found by someone some time soon and maybe I’ll get a kind soul who takes the time out to read my words or hear my voice and then write a comment acknowledging me further in the comments section below.

I guess I’d never know if I didn’t try. If I didn’t put myself out there in any way, I’d never have feedback. The feedback isn’t guaranteed when I do put myself out there, but the possibility of it is increased. And, that’s good enough for me.

 

I wonder sometimes about why I’m doing what I’m doing online and offline. I’d forgotten why for what feels like centuries, but I’m being reminded again now. Being reminded each day.

I know Amaryllis isn’t my end goal. I want to be so much larger and bigger and brighter than it, but I think it will give me a lot of real world experience from which to grow and mature. It will be a challenge and a real test of my skills, and I think that is something I’m slowly getting more used to.

But, I guess like Thor tells Loki in that elevator in Thor: Ragnarok — why would Loki choose to lie and betray Thor (as it’s gotten so predictable) when he could be something more?

I want to be something more.

I think I got so confined to where I’m at in the world right now that I forgot the bigger picture. I want to work each day, each moment, each week to going further than I ever have before.

So, no, I don’t know how to do it. I don’t know if ANYBODY knows how to do it.

But we all have to start somewhere.

And I’m ready.

I’m ready now to start.

 

Sometimes, sometimes I also wonder if I were to pass on before I got out everything I wanted to do, if anyone else after me would be able to take up my words–take up my fanfics, take up my ideas, take up my stories. Or would that be the end of the line for me? For what I had to create? What I had to show? I wonder, sometimes, I wonder.

I also feel that those of us who struggle with mental health conditions are probably some of the most caring, compassionate, empathetic and kind souls around. It’s not easy to take on the task of bettering yourself and growing as a human being. Most of us didn’t ask for this shit to happen to us, so it’s so, so, so important that we get support from those around us, that we aren’t judged, that we are validated, that we are loved. I think those who’ve struggled probably show more compassion and appreciation to each other than most “normies” because even the normies forget that we all struggle with something. At some point, in some moment, there was a struggle, for whatever reason. And I think it’s those who’ve traveled the hard road that can share their love and care and wonder with those who may be struggling, sometimes unbeknownst to us at the time. We don’t necessarily know what demons a person is fighting. So, be kind. Be kind and show appreciation. It goes a long, long way.

 

Thank you so much for reading. Sending you light and love, and oh, here are those flyers:: ❀ ❀ ❀ If you can, please share this post with as many people as you can. Love you guys.

 

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CONSUME DAY vs. CREATE DAY | Tackling Internet Addiction in a Different Way

Hello, and welcome to this new blog post. I am under a veil of intense inspiration, especially of this particular topic so I hope that you enjoy your stay here and are inspired to swivel your perspective from blindly consuming the Internet to creating your own content (ironically of course for others to consume). Let me know in the comments what you think about this post or you can contact me over My Twitter or at my public email address (recoverytowellness@hotmail.com) if you’d like to speak with me privately about this subject matter or anything under the sun, ahaha. Hope you enjoy this! Sending you light and love,

— Raquel

 

CONSUME DAY THUMB = 10.24.19


So this is a follow-up blog post to my drafted blog post (from Sept. 27th) titled:

“Hi, I’m Raquel and I’m Living with an Internet Addiction”

As mentioned previously, this blog post was only drafted and never made it much further than the title and the inspiration at the time for me to create it. Curse you consuming rather than creating!

Which brings me to this blog post itself (which I hope will actually be launched but because I’ve made graphic designs for it, I’m pretty certain that it will).

Last week, Oct. 18th, I brought up in therapy at my day program how I felt–and this is at the moment, it may change in the future–that Consuming the Internet versus Creating for the Internet are two different things.

Maybe it’s me making excuses to further deny the fact that I’m living with an Internet Addiction. It’s purely possible. My family therapist, June, described how I separated a Youtube addiction from an entire Internet addiction as being clean from coke for several years while at the same time still drinking ten beers a day. Just because you’re sober from one drug addiction while still giving into another drug addiction doesn’t mean you have no drug addictions or that you’re completely and purely sober.

But, alas, I’m getting ahead of myself.

Let’s back-track a bit, shall we?

 

I started at my day program, Passages, nearly two years ago in February 2018. Since May 2018 I’ve been attending the DBT-Intensive program there in which I’m taught a new skill in the DBT realm (Dialectical Behavior Therapy’s crux is the ability to live with two opposing ideas existing within the same space (think “I want to live” and “I want to die”) and is an extraordinarily helpful and key tool in recovery from Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) although it can be applied to many other diagnoses, like many other therapies (just because it’s for one disorder doesn’t mean another disorder can’t learn from it) as well as be compiled of 4 intrinsic categories: Interpersonal effectiveness, mindfulness, emotion regulation and distress tolerance) for the second portion of the group and given homework for the next week, which I complete and share during the first portion of the group and if we have time I choose a situation from the last week to share on my diary card of when I struggled to use skills or could have used more skills. Diary cards serve the purpose of tracking moods and behaviors each day.

Phew! That long winded explanation out of the way…

It should come as no shock, if you’ve been following me for a while, that I use daily planners and have been since about 2017. As far back as then I’ve tracked, more or less, how I’ve used my time during that duration: blocks of Youtube and crises and schoolwork/classes.

Just now, I decided to be proactive and return to these old planners still in my room (stood up on the floor, actually) to see when the next dominoes fell into place. My treatment coordinator at program (around June 2018) suggested I more officially start tracking my Internet usage, likely nudging me into considering how much of an addiction it was for me (not that I was ready then to say so).Β  Mid-July 2018 I began to not only block out pieces of time but actually start calculating how much time I was spending on the Internet.

On the low end of the scale, sometimes I fell at 2 hours of usage. At the high end, sometimes 8 or 10 hour days. Most often, I ranged from 4 – 6 hours of Internet usage each day.

To be honest, this is really the first time I’m taking a look at it and hot damn, that was a lot of hours! I didn’t realize or, more likely, I had forgotten how intense and demanding it got. Nowadays, Oct. 2019 I can go some days with 0 hours, some days with 2 hours and more rarely with 5 or 6 hours. I probably hover from 2 – 4 hours more of the time than most.

Regardless, I kept this habit up more weeks than not of tracking my Internet usage in my planners. Eventually, and this I’m not sure when, but I think it was only in 2019, I started to track my Internet usage on my diary card.

Around this time, I started to separate or categorize types of Internet usage. I separated my time online on Youtube as its own category of an Internet addiction, as in, time I spent on Youtube was the only tracking of Internet usage that I was doing. So if I spent 2 hours on Twitter and 4 hours on Youtube, I’d only say it was 4 hours online for Youtube use rather than including the Twitter time. This gets a bit murky when I start to exclude creepypasta listening time if, say, I’m also cleaning my room. I think, still, that this is more productive time because of the goal in mind– say, when I’m staring at a Youtube video watching intently and focused only on that whereas for a creepypasta I can look away from the screen and create a new art piece or reorganize my room. The goal is different-one to consume and one to create with. (We’ll get back to this soon, don’t worry).

So for a while I did that. I tracked only my Youtube time, I would calculate the week’s work of Internet usage–so, from Monday to Sunday, how much time did I spend online, etc. I tracked on my diary cards (Friday’s to Thursday’s). I tracked in my planner. I fell off calculating and adding up all the times but for the most part I tracked it all.

Then came the time I went to Germany with my family in August 2019. It was when I visited Twitter for less than an hour that I felt super, SUPER guilty about it that began to twist the idea into my innards that hey, maybe I have an entire INTERNET addiction rather than just a Youtube addiction, (and the Youtube addiction is what I started to call it–think, denial of an issue, especially an addiction). I did manage about 10 days completely off Youtube during that vacation, which is STILL hella impressive to me. πŸ™‚ As it should be XD

So in Sept 2019 when June was suggesting that they are all the same substances, so to speak, for my addiction, the more a little ding appeared over my head.

But I still felt differently about it.

And again, maybe I’m making excuses. Maybe I’m STILL not ready to admit I have a problem. I do think I have LESS of a problem than where I started out at.

And, I really, really do think that CONSUMING the Internet is different than CREATING on the Internet.

Which brings me back to this post at hand.

I’ve decided in the last week from my in-program therapy session to challenge myself. Challenge myself in creating a new way of categorizing my Internet usage: consuming versus creating.

It’s unlikely that I can completely tear myself away from the Internet. I have to check emails, research information, read articles, ask questions etc. There will always be that little bit of the Internet, I think. I don’t think it’s realistic to completely be away from it. Because in small doses, in structured times, it can be useful.

It’s just about reframing and changing the way I’m engaging with it that’s the heart of the solution, I feel.

Because, I’m an artist. I like to create things and I like to put them out on the Internet. This notion, this “Personal vs. Private” is something I wish to explore further in another upcoming blog post but for now, I’m a very public person. Yes, I need to further self-reflect on what it is I’m aiming to get out of the Internet–what is it that I want? Attention? Validation? Community? Interaction?–and from an early age (since I was 16 on deviantART ) I’ve enjoyed placing myself out into the realm of the Internet–which of course means my artwork. I find more value in placing my artwork in front of the potential eyes of others so that I can run the possibility of that occurring as higher than if it just collected dust on my laptop, never to be seen of again. If I put my artwork out there, maybe just maybe someone will see it and comment on it. If I don’t put it out there at all 100% no one would see it. But if I do? Maybe someone will. Maybe someone will engage with it. Maybe it will influence someone. Maybe it will inspire them to create, too.

So I don’t think removing myself from the Internet is what I want to do. I think because creating is so integral to my core and because I do want to be someone, I want to be an influencer, I want to put myself out there and do public speaking and perform a TED talk and all that jazz, I just have to change the way I’m thinking of the Internet and what I put out there.

Because I still want to put things out there. I want to create content that ironically other people will consume.

I’ve spent so long consuming in the last few years, so much so that it’s taken away a lot of my every day inspiration that I want to set some limits to it so that I can do more CREATING than CONSUMING. Because consuming, while it’s instantaneously gratifying, it’s also very draining and sucks me into a world of drama and unnecessary guilt and sadness and emotion that I’m ready to return to CREATING as my most powerful force. I believe it will help me introduce myself into my “Work Mode” as well as be more expansive, important, and more high achieving. πŸ™‚

I want to feel more happiness, accomplishments and like my time is being made worthwhile. I know that I can’t ALWAYS be 100% all the time but I’d like to give myself more credit and more time to be doing what I love rather than eating up everybody else’s. I think, too, there are times for consuming to become more inspired and interact more with others than JUST creating 100% or JUST consuming 100%.

So for now, I’m going to introduce myself (and potentially others) into Consumer Days and Creator Days. Days dedicated merely to either consuming or creating.

Today, it’s been Creating. Tuesday this week it was Consuming.

Which is why I have the thumb graphic design above and so I’ve created that, I’ve listened to music, I’ve written this blog post, etc.

At the end of the day I will see which felt more worthwhile and important. Soon, I’ll also be showering, watching Grey’s episode from last week, watching a film to review it and reading a book, amongst other things I have on my to do list.

And lastly, here’s the create day thumb:

Create Days - THUMB - 10.24.19

And for that last statement–I think interaction with our audience can be both consuming and creating, depending on how you look at it. I think interaction may fall into the gap between the two definitions so don’t believe that these two thumbs are the ONLY ones coming to you, because once I have more data and more to say (which I always do) I will be hitting you guys back up with new information, new ideas and what went well/what went wrong with where this starting discussion exists.

I think this is going to be an excellent way to track my urges and see what it is that I do more of: creating or consuming. I had another idea too but I’ve since forgotten it/it’s been buried deep down into the folds of my brain.

Lastly, I listened a lot to “The Bones” by Maren Morris to create this post which is a very, very lovely song that I plan to do a song a day edition on soon. πŸ™‚

For now, I really, really need to take a break because I’m hungry and I have lots of other things I need to get done today. So, I hope that this post was intriguing and that you got something out of it!

More posts to come at you all soon.

PS A lot of this whole creating versus consuming thing also came from the inspiration I took upon myself to find “balance” in my life, largely professionally and personally and June had noted how my personal balance was almost all Internet based. So now I’m working on another drawing that is self-care based as other stuff I have to juggle each day. Phew. This was a lot of work. ❀ I will enjoy my break extensively soon. xxx

Thank you soooo much for reading!!! ❀ ❀ ❀

Life Update – End of August, Plans for Sept. 2019

Life Update Thumb


I’ve been neglecting this blog for far too long.

I apologize for that.

Also for another missing in action Thumb Thursday.

I do want to do so much more with this blog again in the future but for right now, I’m tired and have much I have to catch up on in real life, so I’m going to bullet this entry and then head to sleep within the next hour (it’s 10:30p EST).

So, here we go:

  1. The trip to Germany/Austria went swimmingly and I coped with skills super effectively, and used interpersonal effectiveness skills and dealt with situations that brought up intrusive thoughts/images more masterfully than I’ve ever done before. There were bumps of course yet I didn’t act on any of my urges. πŸ™‚
  2. Because of this, I also spent 10 days without Youtube for the first time in a LONG, LONG time (I have a Youtube addiction). I only checked Twitter twice in the span of 30 mins and even then I felt a lot more guilt about it than I thought I would be.
  3. Having so much time off of Youtube meant that I lulled myself to sleep with old meditations (I actually still need/want to download some new ones to my iPod), music and either used music during the day or went without it for the majority of the time. I also wrote A SHIT TON of fanfic. Which was awesome (and still continuing!)
  4. I typed up my handwritten pages for ALU and updated it this past Sun. I also worked on IIOC, S, had D&D in progress anyways and just finished another chapter for TWBtE which is aweeeesome. I hope to publish this by tomorrow on FF.net and AO3.
  5. Upon my return I got actually pretty excited to go back to program and people there don’t annoy me as much as they had beforehand XD
  6. I’ve been to therapy a few times since (June, T at program etc)
  7. I have to reorganize my room like a motherfucker
  8. I watched some movies and did some film review/analysis/commentary notes! πŸ™‚
  9. I started to read a little again
  10. I had a NAMI presentation this past Sat and it went all right
  11. Plans I made with David fell through on Sun and I went off the deep end (almost literally because Deep Dives on Youtube) but I made up for it later and especially so this week as I’ve stayed off the video sharing website pretttttty, pretty well. πŸ™‚
  12. Tu I went on more of a MCU Deep Dive, not sure I’m calculating that to be honest, but it led to me reading through others fanfics/some of my own and that was AWESOME.
  13. Wed I started to write another chapter for TWBtE which I haven’t updated since last year.
  14. Today I finished that chapter, listened to LOTS of music, went on a walk with my Dad and Mokeys, filmed two takes of a video, took a shower, worked on some job apps, read fanfic in place of going on Youtube but I was on Youtube once or twice here and there (largely uninterested in it, though, yay)
  15. Also, I think Mon I filmed a video too and started to edit some as well πŸ˜€
  16. I’ve also hung out with friends here and there, too, of course!
  17. And finally, one of the reasons I’m posting this entry today:
    1. I’m in the process of creating a Youtube video and blog post under the name of “26 Random Acts of Kindness to Celebrate 26 Years of Life”.
    2. I’m giving myself 5 days to 1 week to accomplish it (the giving stuff out portion that is), filming the prep, clips before and after etc. (not the interaction itself), and am going to be doing this largely on Saturday Aug 31st when my friends David, Madeline and John go up to Boston to celebrate David’s and mine’s birthday month! πŸ™‚
    3. I’ve come up with about 16 ideas so far (with help from a website I have linked on my Twitter but am too tired to link here, sorry, it will be in the official post however!) and will get support around how to count/categorize the entries/acts themselves from my day program.
    4. So yeah, I am very, very excited for this day and it’s going to be SO MUCH fun just in general and with an added kindness to the table.

Welp, that’s all I can fit for right now. I hope it was enjoyable and you get some kind of sneak peek into what’s to come, largely:

  • Book reviews/analyses
  • Film reviews/commentaries (Film Friday’s)
  • Old articles still
  • Thumb Thursday’s
  • Life updates
  • Art
  • Recovery Projects
  • Tags/Awards
  • Fanfics/topics
  • Mental health/recovery
  • Teachable moments

And, I am going to be designing more graphic designs soon for another Internet user regarding mental health awareness and worldwide mental health day live, and I updated my Youtube banner and profile pictures (see below for funsies).

Yeah though, I have to go, it’s been cool beans.

Hope you guys are well! I know I’m kinda talking into the void but I do appreciate it all. Thank you for reading. ❀ ❀ ❀

PICS:

RtW-Youtube-Banner-NEW-8.26.19 (3)

Made on Visme (review to come within the next month!)

IMG_3110 --

Photograph taken in August 2019; shout out to David for holding the hydrangeas in place πŸ˜‰

What’s Been Happening Behind the Scenes? (Ft. Lots of Photos)

Survivor Award = 8.1.18


Soooooo,

hi again!

It’s been a while. This is going to be a smorgasbord of topics post, because I don’t have a lot of time but I want to catalogue my thoughts before going to my graduation ceremony tomorrow! And it’s been so long and I’ve been itching to write most days just didn’t always prepare the time for doing it. πŸ˜›

With that out of the way…

  • I’ve recently gotten more movies and books out from the library πŸ™‚ I have finished handwriting my film review for “Pet Sematary” (1989) that I now just have to type into a post and publish! It’s going to add up to 10 hours of work altogether, I think.
  • I went to a local festival on Sat with David and that was SUCH fun, plus I filmed a bunch of it and I can’t wait to make that into a video for my Youtube channel (SNEAK PEEK: This is a glimpse of some of the things we won!)

IMG_00006689

  • I also got a NEW soft brown pillow from Walmart and I don’t regret that decision (it’s as soft as Galaxy used to be)
  • I also got like 6 new books for $4 but don’t tell my Mom that.
  • We had the NAMI Walk and I filmed a bunch there too. That is also another video I want to do soon (plus last year’s!!)
  • I’ve made 4 new IOS’s since we’ve last spoke (just two examples below to quench your thirsts!)

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&

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Lyrics “Lift up your eyes and see the sun is rising” from “The Sun is Rising” by Britt Nicole πŸ˜‰

  • I filmed a video of ONE of these IOS’s so that’s fun!
  • I decorated my ceremony’s hat! Here it is, before and after:

IMG_00006587

IMG_00006596

The A is for Avengers πŸ˜‰

  • Since trying on tomorrow’s outfit, I’ve come to realize I could fit about 6 of me in the gown itself, ahaha
  • Aw, I just heard about some cancelled plans for the weekend, so either this one or next I’ll be traveling in an unfamiliar place (in preparation for that job)
  • I want to go see “Ma” in theaters Sat or Sun
  • I still have plenty of books to read and minus today this past week has been less filled with my Youtube addiction
  • I finally finished my IOOV re-certification, thank god.
  • I got a haircut on Mon and got it straightened, so that’s fun!
  • And overall today I’ve been sleeping and not doing much, ahaha.
  • Tomorrow 2 of my friends are coming to my graduation along with my parents and then after I’m gonna hang out with my friend Vanessa who will come watch me edit some videos until I drop her off at her house.

So, that’s about everything so far.

I should really get going soon. Maybe I will try to read a little more. I am working on a new film review and I imagine my Sat is going to be a lot of reviews. Maybe I will still go driving on Sun anyways, I’m not sure.

But that’s all I got.

I’m honestly more excited for video editing after graduation than the ceremony itself. But the weather should be nice, hopefully! I guess I think it’s a little anti-climatic as I was already sent my degree XD

Buuuuut, yes. I have a VERY EARLY morning tomorrow, so that’s it from me for now. I’ll try and not take so long on the next post πŸ˜‰ I want to do some old challenges/award posts and who knows maybe even do something more creative on here, too.

Stay safe!!

❀ ❀ ❀

& Thanks for reading!! πŸ˜‰

One Year Hospital Free | & Get Well Soon Card Day #2

happy 1 year hospital free day THUMB - 2.15.19

Trigger Warning: some mentions of suicidality and self-harm


So, two things:

  1. I don’t know what happened with the alignment on this post’s thumb, but it’s not supposed to cut off at the top but for some reason when I download the image it just does that. Weird, for sure.
  2. This post is a day late because I got busy and went out of the house yesterday with my friend David (we went to see “Happy Death Day 2U”–which I plan on sharing as a film review and possibly, maybe seeing again for that review stuff.)

On the plus side, we got to share the most lovely of drinks from Marylou’s which is the s’mores frozen drink; tropical (insert many Oooo’s here) Swedish fish; gummy Starbursts; and brownie flavored Muddy Buddies (I just discovered the peanut butter treats this week at program and fell in love–they’re everything I never knew I needed in my life lol). We also got to hear an interesting romantic song about having a PhD in romance/in the bed, so you know, that’s cool. I don’t know what the actual song is called yet, but maybe I’ll try to search it while I’m procrastinating on this post. Ultimately though, we should probably get back to the previously scheduled program. πŸ™‚

Oh! Actually, the last thing on this tangent that I wanted to mention was that I want to see the remake of Stephen King’s “Pet Sematary” that comes out in April by first, of course as one will do, reading the book (and reviewing it), watching the first movie (and reviewing it), watching the sequel (and reviewing it) and then finally watching the remake this year. Or maybe even later, I don’t know, I’m going to be balls deep in Captain Marvel and Avengers: Endgame when those come out and I AM considering purchasing DVD copies of Thor: Ragnarok and Avengers: Infinity War as those are two very prized loves that I have for them, as well as reviewing them too. So many choices and so many decisions… But, that’s the end of that tangent!


So, as for the meat of this post I guess I will naturally go where the words take me which I feel is going to be a bit of a life update and shenanigans I’ve been up to this week as well as talking about the direct topic of this post and why it’s being born. πŸ™‚

So, if you’re new, hello, and welcome and you should know right away that yesterday, Valentine’s day, marked my amazing journey of being one year hospital free! Meaning, my last psychiatric hospitalization occurred back one year ago to the day!

You may be wondering: Raquel, how the hell did you achieve that? And I know, it’s a HUGE deal, really. And it’s awesome and amazing. I really turned my life around completely, like a full 360, because my natural state of being was instability and in the last year I’ve transformed it to stability.

A year ago if I spilled my coffee (as is something that happened recently enough in the last month and a half) I would have interpreted that event as yet another reason I should kill myself (as I’m so incompetent with coffee I must only be incompetent at life and adulting by extension).

But now?

Now it’s just some spilled coffee. Yeah, it sucks and it DOES, and it’s also just a blip in the road.

I’m not without bumps, bad days, triggers and the like. I just have a higher pain tolerance now. I’ve been able to reshape my identity, learn how to accrue positive attention from others (largely through artwork, project ideas, hobbies I enjoy, the MCU, being the center of attention at times, sharing myself authentically and true) and change a lot of things in my life.

Yes, my pride does get in the way sometimes when I do struggle, and I will still struggle, yet it’s different at the same time now. What would have been instability for three to four days lasts only 15 minutes now. Yes, my triggers do accumulate–vulnerability factors from two or three days ago add up gradually with other triggers that may result in a delayed reaction i.e harm ideations that I do NOT want to act on and won’t act on and such.

And the intrusive thoughts haven’t even disappeared either. They’re still there and ever so slightly expanding, I just react to them differently now. If I couldn’t change the fact that I get intrusive thoughts, I’ve learned in this last year how to change my relationship that I have with them. I may not be able to control the images I see in my mind’s eye, but I can change the filter between myself and them.

With scratching self-harm and suicidal ideation fading into the background, other symptoms have arisen for me to focus in on instead. Hair pulling or trichotillomania has come up often, lip picking which I file away as an OCD behavior unless I draw blood which I then differentiate as self-harm; scalp picking when I started to pull away from the trich (no pun intended); skin picking like callouses on my fingers.

Another thing that also came up was my unhealthy relationship with Luna whom I had to disconnect from while completing my final semester of uni and my unhealthy relationship with the Internet (more specifically Youtube).

Additionally, there are some people that I try to “check up on” routinely but that may have devolved into addictive behaviors without me realizing it and even borderlines on a bit obsessiveness. Athena is one example, and instead of checking on her multiple times a day, I’ve cut it down in the last week to just once a day. I also am working on the Canva cards for her and am sending them over to her every 3 days, which I’ll probably make a couple more tonight to get ahead and all.

But with Youtube, there’s this thing I call the “Deep Dive” which is when I say to myself “I’ll just watch one video” and four hours go by and I’m left wondering what the hell happened and how I ended up in this rabbit hole! I often feel pretty bad about it too, which doesn’t help.

I may still check too much on Twitter (multiple times a day) but if it is an issue, I’m not willing to accept it yet. For now, it’s largely just Youtube. And any time people suggest I just turn the Wifi off, I literally hiss and can’t imagine life, in ways, without the Internet. If that’s NOT a problem, I don’t know what is!!

However, for now as I am out of work and out of school (my diploma came in the mail this week!!), I do have to prepare myself for when I will get a job and I won’t be able to be that active and involved in the online communities. Baby steps, though.

As of right now, I find that fanfiction time, listening to music, listening to creepypastas while I play Kindle games or reorganize my room, using Twitter, answering messages and emails and blogging are acceptable forms of Internet usage.

Probably because I have the Internet and it’s so easy to consume mindless material, I’ve strayed away from reading novels and reviewing them and such. Besides, I got so stuck when it came to reading, either focusing in on coursework or feeling as though I had to perform to this higher expectation that I actually sat in the throes of not being able to read or avoiding it at all costs (books I mean, although it’s expanded somewhat and sometimes to fanfics and such) for many, many months.

However!!!

At program today, some of us walked to the nearest library and I picked up 2 graphic novels and 2 novels and I plan on doing some lovely amounts of reading this weekend and was even able to START reading one of the graphic novels to get my toes back into the swing of things. I am VERY excited. With a few extra days off and wanting to re-engage in all that I create and review, I could really increase my chances of maybe one day working with sponsorships and shit for my blog and maybe my Youtube channel!

Additionally, I have some older books I have to read and review and return, and PLENTY of newer-ish books I acquired to read and review and the like. Plus, I want to actually output some of the old book reviews and film reviews notes and such for you guys too.

ALSO, I re-purposed my shipping box from Canva into a Goal for the Day Box and have been achieving those little goals each day. So far:

Day 1: Film a video (M) [COMPLETED]

Day 2: Write a new blog post (Tu) [COMPLETED]

Day 3: Create a watercoloring image (W) [COMPLETED]

Day 4: Wash the dishes (Th) MOVED

Day 5: Cook a meal (F) MOVED

For the moved: Th I wasn’t really home much as I was with David for the evening and I went up to this place for a recovery story interview which was suuuper snazzy and fun!! And then today I didn’t cook but I plan to make chocolate chip pancakes tomorrow and continue to do the dishes today and through the weekend.

The Box, I will have to show you guys in an upcoming post.

I believe it was Wed that I also stopped by Target for chocolate chips and Muddy Buddies and incidentally got a few other things too, shhhh, don’t tell!! πŸ˜‰

But yeah, I’ve been getting closer and closer to reading books again and I’m really hopeful that I can also spend some time writing for fanfics this weekend as well as other blog posts and videos and such.

 

Welp, I think that’s all from me for now! I really want to get offline soon and start reading more. I’m sure I’ll fall into plenty of other ideas soon too. πŸ™‚

As for the main topic of this post: Stability has been utterly amazing for me and I can say that it definitely gets better. No matter how dysregulated you are with your emotions, you can reach a place of peace and stability, health and happiness. Recovery is possible. You can find a life outside of mental health conditions again. You can make it to a year self-harm free, a year out of the hospital, etc. I know that reshaping my identity has been huge for me (shifting away from being ill and being a suicidal blob having to prove my suicidality, to instead an artist and an advocate) and while I do still have low days, I know that it gets better and that I can survive them to get back to the better days. It’s absolutely awful when they’ve got such a tight grip on you, and I can also say that the lies they tell you are just that: LIES.

Being at a long-term day program has been immeasurably helpful for me. DBT especially has been amazing. I think in part that my time out of the hospital went by almost pretty quickly, and when I started to struggle again I would implement what I would normally be doing in the hospital into my present day out of the hospital regimen–so, coming up with regimens, cutting out unhealthy behaviors like ruminating while listening to music and pacing my room; making no time for the mental health conditions to be “chatting” with me like at a tea party (get that reference? ;)); not purposely re-triggering myself (if I got a nasty comment online I block, mute and delete the email and don’t return to it after); continuing my work with advocacy programs and opportunities; shaping who I am and what I value as separate from my mental health (a good way my family therapist June put this was there are so many people with the diagnoses that I live with, so what makes me different from them? That’s still a starting point to more journaling entries I want to explore in the future! And to eventually share with you all <3); creating art and listening to more new music and everything. Yeah, so much. Just…so much.

Even things like playing video games at night before I fall asleep is great and I guess just using skills every day even if I’m not always skillful (who is??) has been a major change. And journaling my accomplishments each day (mostly) and filling out my diary card, planner, five year journal and trich papers has made so much difference.

But, I’m getting off topic. Before I go, here are some of the ideas I have for my blog:

  1. Book reviews
  2. Film reviews
  3. Life updates
  4. Leftover articles
  5. Recovery based projects
  6. Art
  7. Goal for the DaysΒ  (w/ commentary)
  8. Old tags / New tags
  9. Revisiting old topics (A- Z challenge; song a day’s)
  10. Journaling based entries (like from my own journals into a blog post)
  11. Art therapy/Teachable moments
  12. Fanfics/creative writings

And for my Youtube channel:

  1. Life updates
  2. ART
  3. IOS
  4. Book reviews
  5. Film reviews
  6. Support Stands
  7. Vlogs
  8. Collabs
  9. Hauls
  10. Goals for the Day (weekly based)
  11. Lessons Learned Lectures (L3’s)
  12. Recovery based projects
  13. Article read-outs
  14. AND MORE!

I honestly can’t think of anything else other than wanting to share a haul of Target stuff and things and yeah, I’m tired ahaha. This has been a very long post…. I will end it now. πŸ˜‰

Hope this was interesting and neat and fascinating for you guys!! It was for me and I can’t WAIT to jump back into reading now. πŸ™‚

Have a good one!!!

❀ ❀ ❀

Oh, I forgot, today’s get well soon card for Athena:

GWSC Day 2 - Created 2.12.19

I Googled a picture of her doggo for this one. πŸ™‚

Welcome Back: Bursting with Ideas ft. New Year’s Resolutions & Anti-Resolutions

my goals_reaching for the stars THUMB


Welcome back, everyone!!!

It is currently January 6th (almost made a typo of 66th, whoops!) 2019. This is actually my first blog post of the new year–although I had planned for a few other posts (articles) to be added to the end of 2018 and even wrote the start of a couple of other 2019 posts without ever completely finishing them (2019 Resolutions & Anti-resolutions). But we’ll get back to that at the end!

It’s currently about one in the afternoon EST here and I’m trying to get back my writing vibe from fanfic stories and blogging and the like.

Today actually marks 4 years since my first suicide attempt, and I’ve made myself a busy schedule for the day to distract and cope through it effectively and skillfully. πŸ™‚ I also wanted to spend this moment talking about all the ideas and inspiration that’s bursting forth from within my soul as well as share some haul photos of my endeavors yesterday and an overall life update about things and where I hope to go with my blog in the new year! So, let’s jump on in!


Life Update Thumb

It’s been a long time since I last properly blogged and a few things have changed since then. For instance,

  1. I graduated university with my BS in psychology
  2. I’ve been in stable recovery for 11 months (almost one complete year in February; the specific date is something I still have to check for sure though)
  3. I’ve acquired a new editing software (Adobe Premiere Elements) to help with the content I aim to create and explore on my Youtube channel
  4. I’ve been writing lots of fanfiction again
  5. I reorganized and redecorated my room
  6. I had good holidays! (Christmas & new year’s)
  7. I’m still attending my day program 3x/week
  8. The Mokeys has been good and wonderful and entertaining! πŸ™‚

Back to my goals for the year:

new year's resolutions &amp; anti-resolutions thumb = 1.6.19

I just made this new THUMB above, so sorry if it’s not my bestest workΒ  but it’ll do for the purposes of this portion of the post.

Any who, here are my new year’s 2019 resolutions (that I have actually written out on a little scrapbook paper from women’s group at program):

  1. Read 1 book each month for a total of at least 12 books for the year.
  2. Complete or work on a book or film review biweekly for about 26 submissions in the year overall. (If anyone out there can correct my math that’d be great, I just Googled it but might not be working with the right set of numbers, thanks!!)
  3. Blog more by returning to my blogging roots with 4 posts a month to start the year out at (so about one post a week).
  4. Film, edit and upload videos once or twice every two weeks (about twice a month).
  5. Continue writing more fanfics both new and old. Finish 1 or 2 stories by the end of the year.
  6. Secure a job by May – summer.
  7. Decrease the plunge of Deep Diving (Aim for 15 hours of Weekly Amount of Internet Usage)

Something you guys don’t know about completely, if you don’t follow me on Twitter or haven’t been closely following my articles from fall 2018, is that I’ve completely swooped my life around (haven’t you noticed that this particular blog post is extravagant and so different than what’s been uploaded for the last year? Holy shit, peeps!) with journaling my Score of the Day (SOtD) and Today’s Accomplishments (TA’s) every night before bed (and into the next day if I fall asleep beforehand); filling out my time and where I’m spending it each day in my planner (P); filling out my Diary Card (DC) from program tracking my mood, creativity, online usage, OCD behaviors (pulling/lip picking), self-harm/suicidality urges, number of candies consumed at Lights Out (LO) (as a behavior to prevent hair pulling at night); my trich papers (TP) and my 5 year journal (5YJ) which I got back in October 2018 which involves a little blurb about the day’s accomplishments.

So yeah, I do ALL OF THAT every single day.

With all of that tracking and with my tweeting on Twitter, I just grew away from blogging, pretty much.

I journaled every day since some time back in January 2018 for an entire year. Not always about SOtD’s and TA’s, but still. I went through 3 journals in last year alone. It started out darker than usual but then completely brightened up afterwards.

I think this is actually the first January in 5 years where I’m doing really, really well. I’ve been so stable and in recovery for nearly a year and it’s so, so, so amazing. It’s why I’ve been able to do so much every single day to uphold my sanity. I have grown in my pedestal and have found a way of consistently using DBT skills that I have a lot farther to fall and see all the little baby steps that are involved rather than just going straight from 0 to 100. It’s amazing. Honestly.

I have moments, moments I often share on Twitter, where I feel a swell of gratitude for everything I’ve done and managed to accomplish. Lately this weekend it’s been stability and fanfic writing. Being stable enough to be able to share my doubts and uncertainties, meaning and happiness into my fanfic stories.

I’ve built a palace, so to speak, with the foundations of everything I’m learning from program. And it’s brought my life around 360! I don’t know, I think it’s amazing and awesome and I’m so happy now. πŸ™‚ Happy enough that yesterday I had that moment where there was that epic deal at Bath & Body Works for their semi-annual sale and I was smelling all the scents in their lotions, stockpiling a shit ton of them in a screen textured bag and was just so happy to be alive to smell all the smells and feel happy and good and everything about life and shopping, lol. But really though, I actually walked by Bath & Body Works to not go in, but smelled like a watermelon scent, turned around and then waltzed back in and found out they were having a big sale.

It was definitely a moment of self-indulgence and self-care, because now I have 4 new body lotions to play around with (they were 4 for what the price of just ONE would be! AKA they were $3 each rather than $12 each) πŸ˜€ Here are some pictures of the ones I got (I also filmed a video yesterday sharing this but that probably won’t be up online for another week or two):

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As you see with these first two, I just took the picture on my phone with all the background nonsense and then switched over to my bedspread in a more professional-esque wave of realization. They all smell sooooo good though!

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Ahaha, you can actually see me in the reflection of the cap! πŸ™‚

But today, when I shower, which I’ll be doing after I eat lunch which happens after I put this post up, early by the way, I’m going to use the ‘Fresh seasalt mango’ lotion on my hands/body. πŸ™‚

Actually, a new thing I’ve been doing since last year, maybe around June 2018, is putting on this vanilla almond foot cream and pretty as a peach body lotion on my bum (because I’ve gained weight I’m having to finally deal with some pretty prominent stretch marks). But I like putting on lotion and smelling nice. My Mom had gotten a bunch of new shower gels so I get to smell all sorts of fancy lately! I normally don’t like lotion because of the slickness of it afterward but once it dries it’s okay, I will probably warm up to it more in the future. But these are all good self-care measures and relaxation measures (the last little booklet I’ll be making for myself).

Additionally, yesterday my family and I went to the mall and my parents played bowling while I went shopping and spent time on the comfortable couches writing some fanfiction for Chapter 9 of Severed. That was fun! Here are the two other things I got:

It’s an Avengers logo keychain (which I will be putting on my car keys) that I eyeballed last month at this nerdy Japanese store now in the mall and an impromptu buy of a mini Crazy Aaron’s thinking putty in the snow angel type which is a sparkling rainbow iridescent gray which is so pretty. I love the tiny tins personally, and a friend from school is the person who got me into them as fidget toys, and the tiny cans I find work best with my fingers and hands (I have the glow in the dark Northern Lights one but it’s so thick and big that it will make the muscles in my hands ache after a bunch of threading and pulling). πŸ™‚

You know, another accomplishment I had in the last month was that I went TWO WEEKS without pulling at all. That was awesome. πŸ˜€

Oh! Two last things I wanted to mention:

  1. I define my Internet Usage separate from my Deep Dive time–which is mainly Youtube stuff. AKA Deep Diving is primarily involved with Youtube mindless consumption where I go to just “watch one video” to it being three hours later and I’ve ‘Deep Dived’. Internet usage besides that would be productive websites like Twitter, FF.net, AO3 and WordPress or DeviantART. Or Canva (where I do my graphic designs). Some of the Deep Dive can also be me checking up on people I follow that are not doing well mentally which in turn makes me feel all sorts of sad. 😦
  2. My anti-resolutions!

So, at program, one of the art therapists defined anti-resolutions as things you want to keep the same and maintain into the new year! Here are mine:

  1. Maintain my stability by continuously choosing to use DBT skills in an effective manner.
  2. Upkeep my journaling and tracking progresses through DC, J, 5YJ, P and TP.
  3. Add working on journals (free thought writings or even blogging topics like what I look for in a job/career, what are positive qualities about myself etc.) and workbooks (in my possession) 1-2 times a week.
  4. Continue with my NAMI involvement in particular IOOV and peer to peer mentoring.
  5. Continue creating art through various mediums.
  6. Continue to grow in my recovery
  7. Spend time each week (about 3 hours) working on my projects and ideas for the future and researching where applicable.

Which, ultimately, brings me back to where this post started out! I have a LOT of ideas, mainly art related ones, ones that I’ve shared with you guys in the past, and I’d really, really like to revisit them and add to them and change them up and everything. Here are my ideas for that, too:

  • I want to write and publish books (a novel, a memoir, a workbook (Recovery Home), a collection of all my Mass Media articles (Titled Recovery: In Progress), a positive and recovery and art filled book, as I’ve seen mindfulness books and gratitude books like that that exist too)
  • I want to create a nonprofit organization named RecoverytoWellness where all of my ideas come from and are based in. Along these lines, I’ll need a mission statement and a website and people who follow it all.
  • I want to create Recovery Restoration, the dream being to collect pro-recovery based artwork by individuals with lived experience who create positive art pieces that are collected in photo albums and donated to psychiatric inpatient units. I’d like to start compiling these creations/photo albums with my own artwork primarily and an about the artist section and what it is about and where to follow me and my mission. I have a couple prototypes (and more to start giving away and figuring out what pieces are more positive and honest than others that might be too triggering) although I haven’t completely fleshed out the idea or worked on it much from its conception.
  • I want to create cards of hope and positivity with my friends from program to donate them to psychiatric inpatient units so people inside can get support and guidance for resources and help outside of the unit. (This one is new and I’m not sure why I didn’t think of it sooner but it’s in part inspired from giving care baskets to cancer patients etc. and also popped in my head after listening to a Joel Osteen speech)
  • Along with this, I’d like to work with inpatient psych units to provide things like books to read or coloring supplies like crayons and such.
  • I’d like to return to blogging and engaging with the communities I do have currently online and work to create larger ones to create even more of an impact. This means getting more involved in Youtube creations and the community there and reading and engaging with other bloggers and blog posts.
  • I also want to flesh out the Recovery Home idea and continue using the hashtag RtW which is my signature for my art making through the form of the cards, positive messages etc.
  • I also want to continue leaving kindness and compassion wherever I go through the positive messages and leaving them where people can find them, etc.

Additionally, I’m going to be working with @Mental_Live from Twitter for World Mental Health Day which is Oct 10 by sharing my story through their website and possibly Youtube videos and creating graphic designs for them.

So, yeah, these are all the ideas I have right now. I am now VERY hungry and look forward to munching on some food soon and seeing where this year takes me, genuinely. I have a LOT of research to be doing and I’ll definitely have more posts to come soon, including some leftover articles and 2 new articles I have yet to fully write.

Eventually, by summer-ish I will be getting a job and before then it’s a lot of preparation and playing around with everything so I’m going to have a lot of time on my hands to build these projects and write fanfic and edit videos before I am ready as ready as can be to start a job. I also plan to get re-certified for my advocacy in NAMI which I can also work on (and if I stay away from Deep Dives I should be able to accomplish a lot–including BOOK and FILM reviews that I want to bring back into my daily life) soon and something else that I totally can’t recall at the moment. Oh yeah, I will probably try to get paid writing work done too (like from the place which inspired me to start my blog 3 years ago in May).

I want to additionally bring film/book reviews to my Youtube channel and Lessons Learned Lectures, sharing my journal entries and creating a path of well, creating and hope and light and love and kindness and compassion.

Okay, I’m definitely even hungrier now and it’s been an hour of writing. So I think it’s time for me to switch songs, I’ve been listening to ‘Praying’ by Kesha this whole time, and dream big and start figuring out where I want to start at all.

So, if you have ANY ideas, let me know down in the comments!! I’d love to read your thoughts and figure out together where this can all go and lead to. ❀ I know I have peeps who’ve created some of the things I hope to one day create so I can definitely get some support for that in the future too.

THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR READING AND PUTTING UP WITH ALL MY EXCITEMENT.

I love you guys and hope you’re doing well! ❀ ❀ ❀

I’ll just leave this here…

Of Which I Rave About Photos of The Mokeys

**INCOMING PHOTOGRAPHY POST**

With my energy depleting for the evening, I’d still like to share this post with you all before I write up my scheduled #WWRRM post (for the daily blogging in August theme) and before I share my OFFICIAL image of the Mokeys for my daily photography challenge this whole month! (I will include the ORIGINAL photograph within here but save the black&white version for the following post!) With that said, let’s begin!!

So, within this post I’m going to include some of the ‘dud’ images as a way to represent how in photography (and art in general) some times things don’t quite work out the way you planned. Sometimes our subjects move (especially animals!), sometimes borders are uneven or horizons are uneven (as is often the case with water photos), sometimes the lighting just isn’t the greatest or the shots are unfortunately blurry. And sometimes, when you persevere and continue snapping shots, you get some real, real amazing GEMS. Such is the case in this post.


I took out the Mokeys (my doggo Mocha who is a year and a half old-ish! And she’s a Labrador retriever, blue tick heeler,Β  maybe some pit bull mix doggo with gorgeous gray eyes! If you’ve been following me for long, you’ll know that we got her back in June 2017–anywaaaaays) for her to go potty outside and I was eyeballing some potential photo shoot ideas with my hazel eyes. (Ideas including a bird bath with a little wire fence before it, later a feather and shadows/light from the trees out on the driveway and some flowers–all ideas that I wrote down in my main journal (and that I’ll shoot later this month)!)

I believe it was afterΒ  this that Mokeys came back inside and went to the small back porch in our down downstairs living room and it gave me a terrific photo idea. So I shot up the stairs twice to my room, grabbed my camera and told Mokeys to stay put as I ventured through the garage back outside.

I climbed the stairs to the small porch, right by the dripping water of the A/C up upstairs in my Mom’s bedroom, and started snapping photos of the Mokeys on the glass sliding door from which she sat behind back in the house.

It was at about 5:30p when I started the shoot, and initially I started with some black&white photography shot on Av but with Mokeys sometimes moving I got a lot of blurry photos and wasn’t too impressed. So I switched to ‘sports’ mode and figured I could change it later to black&white. These resulted in many lovely photos.

It was a little tricky as Mokeys was lying on the mat and sometimes moving away from me and the camera, so I had to knock on the glass to get her to move or come back or do something cute (she got two bonesies for her participation later!)

I was initially going to go back inside (it’s stuffy, humid and hot out) soon after about twenty shots were made, but decided to stay a little longer, even when my ankles ached and my calves hurt from how I was scrunched up there.

I’m SO glad I did! Because I got some AMAZING shots out of this!! So good in fact that I plan to re-shoot this both with Mokeys and as some self-portraits. πŸ™‚ So with that said, enjoy the photos below!! I will caption a few, probably, starting with my MOST FAVORITES, my otherwise ‘I want to share these on my blog’ photos and then the duds. Hope you enjoy!!! ❀ ❀ ❀ (And again, the traditional #WWRRM post will come just after this one with my specific black&white photo for daily photography included there)


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Honestly, this photo is so beautiful it makes me tear up!! The reflections are soooo amazing and I love the way Mokeys eyes/face are appearing here. This was a TERRIFIC shot, I’m so glad I was able to capture it!! I just love the whole trees involved and the sky and the perspective. What do you think?? I also managed to capture her ear and nose. (As seen below) πŸ™‚

IMG_9627 ==x

Nosy Mokeys! Again, I just find this amazing. πŸ™‚ ❀ I managed these shots by lowering my camera towards my knee causing me to not see the screen as much and just hoping something good came of it! Gladly, it did!!!

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And then there’s Mokeys ear as she was turning away from me. I think it makes for a neat set of images: eyes, nose, ear. There’s something magical and metaphorical about them, I feel! When I was more active on DA I would often include poems or short stories with my photos–and I feel that same vibe occurring here!! When (if) I do that, I’ll make sure to share it with you guys here on WordPress.

I personally feel that these three are my most professional and well-done photographs. I just LOVE reflections and I’ve admired this type of effect on others’ works on DA before, so it’s amazing to find a way of replicating them in another way just as uniquely. πŸ™‚ And for myself! I’ve also written down that art idea in the third caption so hopefully one day I can update you all with what I came up with! I’ll probably include it later with posting onto DA (as in, I may post these pictures first then later include a poem/link back to them or something).

ONTO MORE PHOTOS!

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I actually quite enjoy this one too! She’s so pretty and I love the sort of ‘fenced in’ or ‘caged in’ representation here from the door. πŸ™‚ (I had to edit the bottom border here as I suddenly realized you could see more of my location than what I’m comfortable with you all knowing! Good foresight on my part, probably from just Googling my blog’s name! PHEW!)

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This tends to be how Mokeys looks over Galaxy (my Chinese hamster) when she’s babysitting him when he’s out of his cage.

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FURRRRRRRRRRY!

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I don’t need a caption to this one but I am having technical difficulties, annoyingly.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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I caught Mokeys yawning! πŸ™‚ She’s so cute!

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Squinty Mokeys! I enjoyed some of these shots with her ears back. πŸ™‚

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A good capture of how happy Mokeys tends to be. ❀

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I know there’s a lot going on, but I do enjoy this one, too! Maybe it’s like her life of being with us as a family is flashing before her eyes? πŸ˜‰

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A little less reflections and more full-on Mokeys. ❀ So precious!

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I snuck myself into the shot!!! The photo with me smiling in it was kinda creepy so instead you get a shot of my head XD

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It’s like seeing Mokeys in a different light. She only kept this pose for a few seconds, so I feel lucky to have captured it, her eyes tilted up just slightly.

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It’s like I have a Mocha coming out of my camera!! XD

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If there’s a weird, random horizontal bar on the bottom of this page, yeah, I don’t know why it’s there either. Okay, just a few duds now! Because I want to publish this SOON so I can officially do today’s post! (and it’s getting late)

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This was my first shot of the shoot.

IMG_9533 okay

This one is okay, maybe a little blurry.

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I minimized the hot mess of this shot, you’re welcome.

Any who, THAT IS ALL. I hope that you enjoyed these photos. It’s 9p now, so it’s time for me to work on my DAILY BLOGGING OFFICIAL post so I can go to bed REASONABLY late.

Thank you so much for viewing and coming by!! ❀ ❀ ❀

Mokeys sends you love and lickies!!

Of Returning to My Roots

mental health awareness month THUMB 4.19.18

Not to be confused with the song, “No Roots” (which I absolutely adore even though that metaphor is inaccurate, as the one in my life is that I AM planting my roots deep, deep into the ground)

Life Update Thumb

To quote myself from my Youtube channel (RecoverytoWellness): It’s been a while.

I just rediscovered a lovely goldmine of videos (filmed with my laptop’s natural webcam) that I will have the lovely and graceful task of editing, snipping and tidying up for the next month, which is great ’cause I need more content output. πŸ™‚ To be frank, from what I glanced over they involve:

  1. Fidget toys for trichotillomania (inspired by this lovely person, Trich Journal AKA Beckie Jane Brown) (Duration: 1 hour and 5 minutes) (This will be cut down in the editing process, I’m hoping to 45 mins as my Mom has suggested LESS is more for me for editing and there were some pauses in there that I can totes edit out later, so, yeah).
  2. An art in progress (AiP) about an expressive therapy drawing that I had sketched out that I watercolored in real time so the current duration is about 1 hour and twenty minutes but I’ll be time lapsing a good chunk of that so it should come down from there.
  3. A fanfiction talk through (from April) which is about 50 mins long.
  4. A general life update talk through which is about 36 mins long
  5. A sharing of coloring pages loose leaf (vol. 1) that is about 30 mins long.

So, clearly, all my lengthy videos are my webcam ones, which, honestly makes sense as I have more space on my laptop than what my camera will give me. Although, I have been able to film on my camera lately too, which is awesome!

My next few video ideas also include:

  1. A slime/thinking putty ASMR-like video (camera) Duration: (20 mins)
  2. Some form of functioning film/book review (webcam) Duration (30 mins)
  3. A spring compilation video (featuring spring videos and spring photography) πŸ™‚ Duration: (30 mins all together, and that’s being not modest but not likely to be more than 30 mins) (camera)
  4. More IOS videos (AiP’s) Duration: (5-10 mins each) (camera)
  5. Life updates Duration: (30-45 mins) (webcam)
  6. Photography Challenge per day of the challenge (December 2017 and any updates to this that I engage in this year) Duration: (10 mins each) (camera)
  7. General art in progress videos Duration: (1 hour+ raw that will be reduced to time lapse) (webcam)
  8. Lessons Learned Lectures (L3) Duration: (20 mins max) (camera)
  9. Coloring pages (webcam/camera) Duration: (25 mins)
  10. Article reading (camera/webcam) Duration: (15 mins)
  11. Journal entry reviews (webcam/camera) Duration: (20 mins max)
  12. A Celebration for the Mokeys (camera/photos/webcame) Duration: (20 mins?)

I think that’s about allllll I can think of for right now, but hey, that’s a pretty lengthy list!! Good to see I’ve got loads of video ideas. πŸ™‚

Also, SNEAK PEEK that I also shared on Twitter this evening of my thumbnail for the video that I’ll be uploading for tomorrow:

walking vlog THUMB - 5.23.18

THE PHOTO IS NOT MINE, SURPRISINGLY AS I LIKE TO EXCLUSIVELY USE MY OWN PHOTOGRAPHY WHEN CREATING THUMBS BUT THIS TIME I DIDN’T FEEL LIKE SEARCHING THROUGH DOZENS OF FOLDERS, SO PICTURE IS PROVIDED FROM CANVA. THAT IS ALL.

Speaking of fanfics, I want to write about them soon (here). Here is where I’m at in terms of future blog posts:

  1. Film reviews (“Get Out”, “Marley & Me”, “Thor: Ragnarok”)
  2. Book reviews (“Cut”, “Fog heart”, *”Without Tess”, *”Call Me Hope”, Susan Beth Pfeffer’s trilogy, “Before I Fall”, countless others that are too many to name. More on this later)
  3. My Reasons for Using Social Media (Why I blog/vlog/etc.)
  4. #RecoveryHome comeback
  5. Recovery Restoration
  6. Recoverytowellness dreams of becoming a nonprofit organization
  7. Some newer articles and some old but re-envisioned (StWS, treatment 101…)
  8. ART posts (drawings, photography, new layouts, bracelets..)
  9. Haul posts
  10. Stationery, all of it!
  11. Fanfic/original character creative writing explorations (there are a few, actually!)
  12. Life updates in general
  13. Journal entries
  14. L3’s
  15. SADI’s (song a day’s)
  16. A – Z challenge resurrected
  17. Picking up old semi-written blog posts and reviving them and giving them new life.
  18. A post on a collection of my art ideas (that I write everywhere else)
  19. My novel idea
  20. Mokeys Anniversary of getting her (with video compilation)

Yeah, that’s a good sized list, for sure!

I think I will try to tackle the fanfic related topic first. Man, as a run down of things that have been happening lately….

  • *’s = two books that I took out of the library legit a year ago that I kept in my possession because I never book reviewed them but now I have until next Th at 2p (great SMART goal!) to do so so that I can get $35 back from what I had to pay to reimburse them (’cause I was paying full price for those books for them to replace at that point) so, yay, money returned!
  • I went on the NAMI Walk! Walked all 3 miles!
  • “Brother” by Kodaline is heavily influencing me to write fanfic tonight, which is what I’ll soon be doing after this is uploaded.
  • Being stable for 4 months now.
  • Getting involved in my day program 3x/week
  • And getting into the DBT-Intensive side of things which is helping a LOT and having homework all the time in it XD
  • Going by the library to get new books (6)
  • Writing a lot and doing photography, coloring and other forms of art sprinkled in here and there
  • Applying for jobs
  • Attending bi-weekly family therapy appointments
  • Starting chores around the house
  • Shoving in time to write this blog post
  • Been falling asleep, beginning to write posts and then getting distracted or taking a break from my computer all together (something I still want to implement in my life further) and often forgetting to write up another post, all that jazz
  • And, having a spectacular day with Mokeys!!
  • Oh, that reminds me…*adds a video idea*

So, yeah, you know, been all up in that life. I’ve been on Twitter more as of late but blogging will always be my first home. I’ve actually managed to update my deviantART page a bit and write journals there too, so that’s awesome! I might start tinkering with my photography on my blog, i.e. change some of my backgrounds, soon too. Keep your eyes peeled!

Anywho, it is 9p now and I’d like to write, so I shall end this lengthy bit here. Essentially this was:

My To Do List THUMB 11.26

I’ll try to come back again sometime soon…maybe I can even structure it in or something! I have a NAMI presentation on Saturday but this weekend is a longer one, so maybe some time between Sun-Mon I’ll see you all again! πŸ™‚ I still have to structure into my planner my day today (SotD), my accomplishments (MANY) (I wanted to write about Mokeys and all the fun we had today…let me do that for a moment at the end, I’ll compromise), my diary card, my time spent on things and so much more! GWAH! I’ll be getting my NEXT PLANNER soon, which features a PHOENIX on the front and is oh so amazing, pictures to come when I get it for sure!!! πŸ™‚


MY AMAZING DAY WITH THE MOKEYS:

Maybe I will include this blurb in my video I’ll be dedicating to the Mokeys, but Mokeys if you’re new is my doggo, who is a year and a couple months old now and she’s a labrador retriever, blue tick heeler mix, runt of the pack, used to be named “Pocket”. But she IS the Mokeys now. Mocha is her official name though, I just like shouting “MOKKKEEEYSSS” from the top of my lungs when I see her, EVERY. TIME. anyways. πŸ™‚

She has beautiful markings and GORGEOUS gray eyes, LOOK AT HER PUPPY SELF:

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Mokeys in her cage, which she soon outgrew, on the way home from RI

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LOOK HOW TINY SHE WAS!

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THOSE EYES!

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In case you missed THOSE EYES, here they are again! She was soooo small!!! GWAH.

This is a recent snapshot of her now (I just realized I probably never talk about her anymore on my blog as I moved more towards Twitter, but she totes deserves her own blog post as well as a VIDEO which I will be working on soon because I want to release it on the anniversary of the day that we got her, which if you were following back then, was June 3rd 2017. :)) I apologize for not ever having updated photos of her and her antics and me just talking about her in general (I definitely have on Twitter though–so follow me there! @RecoveryRaquel) But, that’s what this space is for RIGHT NOW. I’ll make a blog post dedicated to her around the same time next month when I have the video uploaded. πŸ™‚ That’s a promise, gotta add it to the TO DO now!

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Here she is babysitting her (older, 1.5 years) but smaller brother (Chinese hamster) Galaxy. πŸ™‚

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SHE IS SO BIG NOW!

Mokeys turned one years old March 4th…I think it was the 4th. BONUS PHOTO: I lied, it’s not on my computer yet but remind me of a picture of Mokeys and her cupcake when she celebrated her birthday. πŸ™‚

Any who, Mokeys is THE UTMOST OF SILLY.

And today she was SUPER SILLY. What happened was…

I was on the floor in the living room and Mokeys jumped on my back, literally, and started humping me then she started biting at my sleeved arms like the Officer Mokeys she is (she legit will take my arm and pin it behind my back, hence the law enforcement name), and then she started jumping on me, and she’s like 50 pounds and I am now about a hundred, but man, she still pushes me down and I struggle to get her off. Then she proceeded to lick my face ferociously, around my mouth and nibbling on my ears, nose and chin and kept jumping on me and pinning me down and then trying to steal my socks off my feet (she’s pulled them off multiple times before and this time was no exception because she pranced around the house with her prize afterwards (and it was tough to get it out of her mouth and by the time I did it was slobbered over)) and then jumping on me again and she doesn’t like it when I put my head down on the floor ’cause she shoves her face into my hair and pushes my face up and then proceeds to lick it all over again. She nibbled on my arms, both of them but my left the most, and I kept laughing aloud so much that she would stop licking me (all over my glasses, mind you), and I would make a sound like “Pwah!” and she would jerk her head back in alarm and then stick her nose back at my mouth and it was HILARIOUS.

My Mom said I hadn’t laughed like that since I was a toddler. IT WAS AMAZING. Made my day an 11 for sure which is the SECOND time that’s happened to me ever (at least in the last year). So, yeah.

It was awesome.

I love my Mokeys. Okay, it’s 9:30p now, I need to do some writing and hug my Mokeys. πŸ™‚

Do you have a Mokeys character in your life? And if you do (or if you don’t!) how could you increase the happiness and silliness in to your life otherwise?

Stay safe, friends. ❀ ❀ ❀

In Which I Say Hello, Briefly

I’m in a really, really good mood and my back-up goal for this week is to make 2 new blog posts that do NOT include articles (which I’m considering scheduling for Tuesday and Wednesday again, like last week).

I don’t have a lot of time right now but I figured that could be its own life update, in a way.

So, before I forget:

Life Update Thumb

I basically just came in here to say hello very briefly. I figured I could make a blog post that’s short and sweet, as I’m always thinking to myself when others haven’t updated in forever that it doesn’t have to be a super long post, it could just be a simple, hey, yo, what’s up, I’m still alive and kicking just busy and shit, you know?

So at least, in some way, I’m fulfilling my secondary goal of the week, already. Man, I could totes go for some orange soda right now.

I have some lovely plans for this week featuring blog posts. Yes a few articles, and also some note taking ones and fanfic updates and all of that jazz. I’m feeling uberly creative for this week so that’s awesome, and I’m doing well, speaking of that! I’m still doing my day program MWF 9a-3p. I’m extra happy today because I JUST finished reading a month old assignment for school that was actually pretty interesting and I quoted a couple of my readings on Twitter this evening, too.

Speaking of reading, I’ve been able to do a shit ton of that lately. And writing fanfiction (I finished up 8 handwritten pages today for “A Little Unsteady”) I have the loveliest of book reviews to spread around the web on this baby blog πŸ™‚ Legit, I’ve written out 4 book reviews for this year so far (not including all the ones from 2017 I have handwritten out and just have to type up).

So, I mean, there’s that.

What else has happened? Just alternating with artwork and trying to keep up with social media. I think today was so good because I got a lot of variety of things done, you know? God, I’m starting to sound like a few of my old roommates while I was on the inside XD

Any who, I still have to do my Score of the Day for today, my accomplishments list, pack up my things and something else I’m totes blanking on right now. I hope this update has sufficed for now. Man, I’m exhausted.

Good night, peeps!

❀ ❀ ❀

Working on my DeviantART Page | #WWRRM

Hello again! *waves*

I am just waiting for Kaiden to come over as I am writing this post. I just started my period again today so I don’t feel like moving or doing too much, so we’re probably just gonna hang out and color/draw outside in the backyard or more preferably in the dining room on the house’s first floor.


So, it’s nearly 10p now, about six hours since I started writing this post. Kaiden came over and we did color and chat and have dinner that my Mom made and it was very, very fun and cool and wonderful. I got to chat about fanfics and we got to color, the world is right side up again.

I also got to work on my DeviantART account today. That was very cool. I have not spent as much time there as I used to and I think I’ve been missing that subtly for a while now. It felt good to go through my inbox (I’m down to 77 messages now from an inbox that was 500+ before) and to save and delete what I wanted before closing up shop for the day, so to speak.

It’s interesting because I’ve transitioned so much to this blog here that a lot of DA people don’t know the same stuff that’s been happening here over there. So it’s been good so far to update and submit artwork and journal again.

I look forwards to incorporating some of this time and stuff into my semester, probably bi-weekly.

That is about all I wanted to say. Maybe more but I’m tired and ought to go to sleep. I hope I do not pull tonight, and if I do, that I reach for my coping treasures bag.

The end of August is neigh here, and I have plans for each of the last days of this hashtag.

Until tomorrow,

Much love,

— Raquel