Monday, August 18, 2014

Well... Look at That!

Well, look at that...

...there went my Muses, taking a year long vacation, those sneaky suckers!  I suppose they had a fine dance with Apollo while I tried to get my head together, but now they are back and so am I!  Of course I am going through kind of a big life change right now, perhaps that is why I am re-inspired?  Well, I've learned a lot, I have a ton to share, and I have quite a journey ahead... so welcome back aboard!  Can't wait to get to know you again!


Deanna L. Moore

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Failure Will Not Define Who I Am

I've been working diligently lately to at least put out one post a week on this blog, which is meant to be a teensy weensy little therapeutic sanctuary of healing.  I'm using it to help myself but perhaps someday it could help others too.  To be honest it is proving to be a challenge to write positively when I am in fact feeling almost 100% down (especially within the past week).  I am in the process of having to change depression medications as the one I was on worked very well but was causing the very annoying side effect of uncontrollable sugar/carbohydrate cravings (therefore leading to weight gain, of course).  The new medicine is supposed to have the opposite effect (appetite decrease), but it is going to take about a month to kick in treat the depression.  I'm not Jewish, but the only exclamation that comes to mind (that is PG rated) is OY VEH!

I recently had a quite dramatic situation with a new acquaintance friend that ended in a horrible situation of betrayal.  Without going into diarrhea-of-the-mouth details this drama resulted in us losing our dearest family pet and I simply have not been able to move on from the heartbreak (with the loss of the pet, not the loss of the friend).  I had let this person convince me that several things in my life weren't "together or good enough" and that she would be the better person to take care of these things (which simply wasn't true).  I was suffering from a completely shot self-esteem and this person knew it and played it.  I ended up not listening to my intuition and I let myself be manipulated and ended up losing the family pet because of it, and I've been having trouble forgiving myself.  For days I have binge eaten again and again and all I hear in my head are the tired tunes of: "How could I have been so stupid?  If only I had...  If only I hadn't gotten sick opening myself up to this...If I hadn't made so many dumb mistakes in the past then I would have never ended up in a situation like this..  I can't EVER trust myself to make the right decisions..."  This nauseating chorus would be enough to drive anyone to the nuthouse (or back into one, as it were).

Then today I got one of those unexpected Divine messages out of nowhere.  Just before I was about to work out I was simply reading a book (and probably feeling bummed out and sorry for myself as I did) when I read a sentence that just about hit me over the head:  "Failure does not define who I am."  BAM!  It really hit me.  I was still letting this person manipulate me in a way.  Yes, I had failed to trust my intuition or believe in my own abilities, and yes it cost me dearly.  But it doesn't mean I'm going to fail at EVERYTHING from now on.  So this is my first step forward.  I'll tell it to myself in the mirror every day if I have to if it will make me believe it.  Failure Will Not Define Who I Am.  For I have let it do so for far too long.

Deanna L. Moore

Monday, August 5, 2013

Letting Go of the "Medicinal" Stigma

For years (long before the severity of my clinical depression became apparent to me) I had read tons and tons of books, articles, blogs, forums, etc. on the mastery of self-healing.  Since the beginning of time we humans have used the powers of faith, prayer, rituals, healing stones, plants or other natural elements... and many other things in order to heal ourselves.
Looking back now I think I believed (without realizing it) that if I couldn't "heal myself" that meant I was not "good enough/spiritual enough".  I even went as far as to deprive myself of much needed mental health medication for over five years because I felt I had to be "strong enough" to deal with it on my own, to will my mind to be perfectly in balance. 

I am finally accepting that taking medication prescribed by a doctor for depression/anxiety does NOT mean your aren't "spiritual enough" because you could not conquer the illness on your own.

I have learned this the hard way this year.  I have also learned that denying yourself treatment in order to convince yourself that you can self-heal is not only a bit on the arrogant side, but it can be dangerous as well.  Taking meds now does not necessarily mean that you will have to be on them for the rest of your life.  I definitely think it is achievable to find wholeness and balance without medication.  But you shouldn't shame and practically crucify yourself if you are at a place in your life where you do need medication.

As people all of our bodies/minds/souls are very different.  Every person's history and current path to wellness is nonidentical, as is every person's reaction to these factors.  Some are born imbalanced, and others become that way later either through abuse or other forms of negativity and illness.

If you are a spiritual person (no matter what faith or creed you are) the first place to start healing is through prayer.  Spirit (God/dess, The Universe, Etc.) will likely heal you at some point and there is nothing wrong with being medicated while waiting for that change.  If it becomes apparent that you are on the path of restoration then consult a medical professional to help wean you to lower doses or to eventually stop altogether.  But if you don't get to that point then stay with what is working and thank Spirit that it is working, even if it DOES become a lifelong journey.

It is my prayer that not only will I remember this lesson for myself, but also that the stigma of being diagnosed or treated for anything related to mental health will lose its power.

Thinking of you with Love,

Deanna L. Moore

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

"From the Top to the Bottom and Then..."

I have a "bloggy" friend who has been giving me a gentle nudge to start this blog up again.  This blog had become a "maybe someday again" thing and I'd never meant for it to.  I was hoping "maybe someday" it could help someone.  And then I realized I needed it to help myself first.  And I thought that felt a bit selfish, so I couldn't find the Muse to go on.  Below is my last attempt at blogging.  It was written originally on July 5th, just a few weeks ago.  The dark undertones of how bad I'd let things get (or rather, things I'd refused to deal with and deeply repressed) is definitely present.  Just hours after I wrote this I had an incident (I'll call it a nervous breakdown) and was admitted into a mental hospital, for the first time in my life, for a four day stay.  I've been on a healing journey since then (with incredible support from friends and family), and thanks to that recent gentle prod from Dominee (we got to meet in "real life" last week!) this is another step forward on the road ahead.
========= Written July 5, 2013, approximately 12 hours before hospital admission === 
At this point I am trying to find a way to actually live this mantra in the photo clip above. I try to keep things here positive and light but today here's the thing: For the past 6 years I've had a deep on and off again depression that I am having trouble releasing. One way of dealing with this has been through blogging, but as passionate as I've been it always falls flat. I consistently blog about loving the body you are in, yet at the same time can't stop obsessing about certain parts of my body and fantasizing about (and trying to figure out a way to finance) a tummy tuck/lipo to get rid of those last 20 pounds. I talk about deep spirituality at times, but IRL give into social pressure about where I should be spiritually and the kind of mother I should be.  (There is an old German saying of Kinder, K├╝che, Kirche, or the 3 Ks, it translates to “children, kitchen, church”).  It way pre-dates National Socialist thinking, but if I remember right somewhere within the rise of the Nazi party it became something of a fashionable statement. My life is an effigy of constant caring for everyone except myself. When I do feel inspired to write, research, or connect with friends my children immediately suffer. When I don't take time to do these things myself I suffer in the long run. I am feeling deeply inspired and spiritual lately, and these deep needs are screaming within to NO LONGER be put on the back burner. And yet they clash with the needs of others, with the life I've created. So any thoughts, positive energy, and prayers sent this way to help me find this sorely needed balance would be an amazing boost right now. Thanks, and I ♥ you all! xxoo

I am a huge Depeche Mode fan and a song line from a VERY old song of theirs  keeps going through my head right now as I write this:

To pull it all down, and start again from the top to the bottom and then
I'll have faith or I prefer to think things couldn't turn out worse.

So here's to starting again.

Much Love to All,

Deanna L. Moore

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

In The Eyes of the Beholder

("Be your own kind of Beautiful" - Lovely bathroom mirror decor to greet me every morning.)

Yesterday was a total goof off day (in between me working a double shift at work!) where I got wonderfully distracted by an app called Bitstrips.  Basically you create an avatar of yourself and she/he stars in a bunch of silly comics.  Several witchy Facebook friends were playing with it and I saw that some were "plus sized" characters and that immediately piqued my curiosity. As I made my character I found the closest body type to mine was "average" and so I chose that.  She came out as a mostly proportionally correct person with a poochy tummy that doesn't much match the rest of her (kind of like myself in real life).  I thought she was absolutely adorable!  As I was casting this character in different scenarios and having hearty chuckles I couldn't get over how I thought she was the cutest character EVER and that she was beautiful.  And then I had something of an epiphany and stopped cold.

I was saying this about "photos" of MYSELF.  Yeah, she was a cartoon character, but it was still ME, "frumpy" figure and all.  In reality I avoid the camera as much as possible.  I NEVER look at "in real life" photos and use any positive words like "adorable" or "pretty".  I'm terrified of being tagged in Facebook photos.  And yet I could look at a character that looked exactly like me and find beauty immediately.  For the first time in a long time I was seeing myself with different eyes.  A much better less judgmental pair of eyes.  I have actually come a long way in the area of accepting myself and self-love.  (No, silly rabbit, not THAT kind of self love)!   Once upon a time I was so infuriated by my body that I actually used to fantasize about cutting bits of flesh off.  After I had my first child I gained some weight and worked with a bunch of cruel co-workers (all women) who harassed me about it and I let their words define me.  Men would (and still often do) tell me I was beautiful but their words were empty to me.  I let the cruel words of the female co-workers win out for YEARS afterward.  I seriously considered plastic surgery ("mommy makeover/tummy tuck") for a long time.  Thankfully I have since then arrived at a much more peaceful place with my post-motherhood body and yet I still have a ways to go.  But surprisingly this chick below just helped me a lot:

What helps you look at yourself from a place of love?
Happy Self-Love,

Deanna L. Moore

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Where I've Been

In February three very unexpected events blew in like a blizzard wind into my life.  The first one is that a local charity informed us that they were going to do a real-life version of an extreme home make-over on our home over a weekend and send our family on an all-expense paid vacation to a tourist attraction here in the DFW area called "The Great Wolf Lodge" while they did it.  Then the very next day we received unexpected news that my father in law had suddenly passed away.  And while all of this was going on I was given a semi-promotion at work that totally changed my schedule (for the better).  This is pretty much why my online time has been almost non-existent lately (except for brief periods I can log in to check things on my phone).

The moment my husband arrived back in town from his father's funeral the home make-over began, and I never dreamed that this one event could help me so much with embracing my year's word, "forward".  The change out of carpets, furniture, and energy in our home has really opened my eyes about the "home" I was living in, both literally and emotionally inwardly.  While I've been sorting this out I feel my heart becoming full of things to share again, but have been just trying to figure out where to start and incorporate blogging into a schedule that works.

So I'm hoping to be back asap.  In the meantime, here are some home make-over photos.

Deanna L. Moore

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Don't Apologize For Who You Are

 From the earliest memories I can recall in my childhood I always felt a bit "offbeat" or "quirky" compared to other people, whether it be other children or adults.  And as I got older I knew in the deepest part of my soul that I liked that quirky girl.  I liked that part of myself that would quip an occasional crowd winning joke (and the many jokes that were complete misses).  I adored that girl who instinctively responded to animals and was more comfortable alone than with others.  I got a kick out of this person who had always been spiritual, who'd always been inexplicably fascinated with storms, who had preferred nighttime over daytime and winter over summer.  From the beginning I loved her.  If I could have I would have "hugged her and pet her and squeezed her and called her George."

The thing is... most of my adult life has not been a reflection of that instinctual love I once had for myself.

From the time I can remember forming a sentence on paper I have loved to write.  Like most little writers as a child I loved writing stories - both in and out of school.  In the first grade my class was instructed to write a fictional short story on why someone might be thankful on Thanksgiving.  Much like Ralph on A Christmas Story I was excited to get to work and I wrote a story that came to me that I felt really good about.            A +++++   However, the teacher didn't quite share my optimism about the piece.  She announced to the whole class that my paper had read "like it was written by someone smoking pot".  Of course I didn't know exactly what pot was, but I knew it was an illegal drug associated with negative stigma at the very least.  The thunder of the laughter of the whole class followed and the teacher's message was quite clear.  Maybe I had thought I'd written something interesting and engaging, but the world wouldn't agree, so I should just keep my creations to myself.  You'll shoot your eye out, kid.  And so I kept that one light inside (my love for writing) buried deep within.  I still always wrote, but only ever shared anything with a very small handful of friends or my sister.

As I grew older and time marched on into middle school, high school and beyond various life experiences drove that message even deeper.  The "real" you is just too "out there".  Keep that part well hidden, only show the "normal" parts that everyone might be comfortable with.  And then, gradually further down the spiral that message morphed into something bigger and uglier.  The "real" you, or any other part of you, isn't worth knowing or loving.  She isn't worth anything.

Does any of this sound familiar?  After years of believing this about myself (and making life altering decisions based on that belief) I've come to realize something.  It's a load of "hokum" (as Big Bang Theory's character, Sheldon, would say).  It's simply not true.

Many years after the first grade incident I realized that what the teacher back then had meant as a humiliating insult could actually be taken as a compliment.  What do most people do when they are stoned (besides eat)?  They sit around and get philosophical and introspective!  So in a really weird way she was saying I was thinking much too deeply for a first grader.  OK, I'll take it!

My friends, not only is the "real you" worth knowing... being and embracing the "real you" is worth EVERYTHING.  Feel that now and BELIEVE that now.  That belief will seriously affect every decision in your life.  It will affect the way you relate to your dog, your best friend, spouse, partner, cat, co-worker or anyone else connected to you.  Don't apologize for who you are.  Believe the real you is worth knowing and loving.  Because, chances are, from your earliest memories of life you already knew this to be true anyway.

Namaste and Big Squeezes,

Deanna L. Moore