The Best Of You

“The statistics on sanity are that one out of every four people is suffering from a mental illness. Look at your 3 best friends. If they’re ok, then it’s you.” ― Rita Mae Brown

Today is Bell Let’s Talk Day #BellLetsTalk. I’m normally pretty open about my mental health with family and friends. Pretty sure I’ve mentioned it here more than a few times.

I’ve had trauma, but so have others. That doesn’t diminish my experiences or anyone else’s.

I’ve had struggles, but so have others. That doesn’t diminish my battles or anyone else’s.

I have health conditions, but so do others. That doesn’t diminish how it impacts me or how others deal with their own.

I have struggled mentally from all of it, others do as well, some don’t. That’s ok. Everyone copes with things in different ways. Some chose to push it aside and trudge on. Some wallow in it, bathing in the anguish and despair. Some face it head on, the train wreck entering the station and continuing on. I could go on.

Since today is a day to talk mental health, I’ll share mine. Since I was young, I’ve always struggled with anxiety and self-perception. I worried constantly about what others thought of me, I was bullied which made it worse. I do have generalized anxiety disorder. My old family doctor thought my MS impacted it and made it worse.

I remember little me, about six years old, looking in a mirror. I was wearing a one piece bathing suit. I thought I was fat. SIX YEARS OLD I thought I was fat. I wasn’t. I was actually quite tiny when I was young. So, in case you haven’t guessed – yes, I have body dismorphia.

When you are in chronic pain, or have a chronic health condition, and trauma, depression is usually what comes along. Yes, I have clinical depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder (basically, I’m more depressed in the winter months). I lot of people think of depression as being stuck in a bed and not going anywhere. That’s not always how it looks though. I’m functional. I work a full-time job. I have children, I have pets. Some think I have too many pets, my psychiatrist says otherwise. They get me moving, they depend on me. They don’t judge me.

The older I have gotten, the less I like going to stores. I do have a bit of agoraphobia. I hate crowds, I’m noise sensitive, I get irritated very fast. Due to my MS, I get overheated really fast which then triggers my anxiety. Oh, there’s ADHD in there too.

With all of that, I’m still here. I’m still fighting, I struggle to make sure my family gets the best of me. I struggle with my personal identity, what I love doing, what am I passionate about (seriously, what am I passionate about?). I used to have a plan. Doesn’t everyone start with a plan? Life had other ideas, other paths and I’ve been a traveler wandering where ever it takes me.

So today, and everyday, be open with who you are. Be honest about your struggles and successes. Don’t be afraid to get help if you need it. If someone tells you they think you are struggling, maybe take that seriously and see if you are.

Whatever you do, always make sure you are giving yourself the best of what you can.

Foo Fighters – The Best of You

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Bullet with Butterfly Wings


“If the butterfly wings its way to the sweet light that attracts it, it’s only because it doesn’t know that the fire can consume it.” ― Giordano Bruno

Follow your passion is a line we hear all the time. Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could all follow our passions? This drive towards passions has left many of us feeling bereft, useless, unfulfilled.

My passion, in my youth, was caring for animals and history, well, archaeology to be exact.

I have always had pets in my life. Currently, I have two cats, a dog, a bearded dragon, a budgie, a parrotlet, an Indian ringneck parakeet, a hamster, a 125 gallons aquarium and two smaller aquariums. Passion one met, in a way. I had wanted to be a veterinarian, but around the age of 11 I found out that vets had to euthanize animals…that dream came crashing down instantly.

I went to university and pursued my love of ancient history and archaeology. I even managed to get two degrees (BAs) in those subjects. Then I got married. My dream fell to the wayside. I kept telling myself – I could always return to school and get my master’s eventually. That never happened. Instead, real life happened. Children, bills, mortgages, divorce, remarriage, another child. I’m not an outgoing or assertive person. I have horrible anxiety. So, when someone tells me – oh you should talk to so-and-so about working in your field of story. I don’t do it. I feel too awkward and anxious to ask.

I have yet to find a career that I find fulfilling or that lights my passions. We need to stop lighting that fire that burns up the lives of so many. Yes, encourage people to follow their dreams, but also make sure to add in realistic expectations.

This is something I have struggled with. It drives my depression. I do my best to encourage my children to do what makes them happy. I think that is the key. There is nothing wrong with being happy, even if it isn’t in your dream job or career. We put so much emphasis on chasing dreams that we forget that sometimes dreams are just that.

I’ve heard money doesn’t make you happy. All I can say is that whomever said that, never had to struggle with bills or feed a family. They never had people judge them for being a have-not. They never felt overwhelmed by feelings of failure. No, money would not solve everything, but, damn, would it ever make life a bit easier if you didn’t have to worry about that mortgage.

I drive to work every morning in a line of traffic of people all doing the same. I sit in my office, working; a worker ant filling the coffers of the rich. I drive home in a line of traffic of people all doing the same. Day in, day out. Some days I just wonder what is it all for. I’m not working my passion. I’m happy-ish. I support my family, I take care of everything.

The world has drained my spirit, and I’ve become too tired of soul to argue anymore.

The Smashing Pumpkins – Bullet with Butterfly Wings

Flow Like Poe


“So many books, so little time.” ― Frank Zappa

I’m so stinking happy about this! I don’t usually like to share when I do something for others. If I wanted the recognition, I’d ask for it, but I don’t. That being said, this, THIS has to be advertised so people will know to use it!

I put up a Little Free Library! It even has a little Google website (nothing fancy) https://the-walker-library.business.site/, just waiting for my verification card. It’s a legitimate, chartered LFL charter number 127002, and I’m on the Little Free Library Map https://littlefreelibrary.org/ourmap/. I have plans to frame the library in reclaimed wood (pallets for the win!) and add a planted top to it with food plants maybe, haven’t decided that for sure. All along the edge of the yard from the library is a tilled line that has a secret – sunflowers, peas, and wildflowers have been seeded there (I’ll take updated photos and add them here when I get the chance).

The photo below is from day one. I know, I know, it really doesn’t look like your typical LFL. I got this mini fridge for free. Bought the spray paint and went for it. The lettering is crooked (I thought it was straight until I stood it up *facepalm*). There’s a small water feature beside it (a HUGE old flower pot water sealed), if you’re lucky you may even find a ripe strawberry on the plant tucked in beside it, and there’s a tiny hydrangea growing there too! The stone you see around it was all salvaged for free either from my yard of from someone I found on marketplace.

I’ve seen some kids come and use it. I hope to keep it full to the brim all year long (may be hard in winter, but I’ll try!). It’s geared for all ages, but definitely has more children’s/youth books…for now. I’m trying to focus on using free/donated materials mostly, including books. Once the frame goes up, there’ll even be a donation box for the local animal shelter, Oromocto and Area SPCA https://www.facebook.com/OromoctoandAreaSPCA. I love this shelter so much and have adopted from them, well, more than once. They are the epitome of what a shelter should be.

Anyways, I just had to share. Amongst all my depression and anxiety, this is something that makes me giddy happy.

MC Lars – Flow Like Poe

Here Comes The Sun

“May the wind under your wings bear you where the sun sails and the moon walks.” ― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit, or There and Back Again

Summer has hit the ground running, and so have I. I’ve been keeping a secret – I’ve finally managed to start losing weight (in a healthy way) AND have energy! Yes, I still have MS fatigue, but I am motivated. I want to move constantly, even when in pain.

My yard is not large, but I love it. I have worked on the gardens there, worked on the plants, cleaning up old growth, overgrown vine, pear trees that were left to run with no one to tend them. A beautiful rose bush left to be scraggly and gnarled were cut back last year and are growing in a lush, full green. I can’t wait to see them bloom. There was a lilac bush left to grow into a gnarled, ragged tree. I trimmed it far back as well; the new green is full and gorgeous.

There was a raised garden bed left to overgrow, the only decent remnants were chives and mint left wild and full. Those beds have been tilled under, the chives moved (though ants remain in them, so they await replanting). A new, smaller, garden was tilled (all work by me) with new plants to start.

The new garden bed.
Old bed tilled under

I’ll need to take more photos of the front and full back. The branches you see around the perimeter where the trimings from the overgrown trees that I turned into a fence like structure. I absolutely love the feel of it all. My only complaint – ANTS! There are ants everywhere.

The sun has brought light back into my life – literally and figuratively. I want to be outside. I want to dig my toes into the ground and squish the soil. I want my hands to be soiled from the work I’ve down. I want the rabbits to come play, and the birds to come feed.

Here comes the sun, and I’m going to worship it every day that I can.

The Beetles – Here Comes The Sun