Letting Go

letting go

I’m not good at letting go. See that jar up there with the butterflies? My jar would be closed. Once something or someone is in my grasp, I hold on tight.

I was thinking about that very thing tonight.  Over the next few weeks I’ll be moving on to a new therapist. I’ve been with my current therapist for two years. We’ve worked hard together, I’ve made progress with her and I’m very attached. I’ve grown to love her. However, she feels we’ve reached the end of her scope of practice and that I need someone who specializes in PTSD.  And now, I have to say good-bye.

But I don’t know how.

How do you let go of someone you love?

I’m in full self care mode right now, I’m trying to tend to my emotions the best I can. I know she’s not dropping off the face of the earth. She’ll still exist. But I wont be able to see her or talk to her anymore. I’ve met my new therapist and I think we’ll be a good fit. But it doesn’t change the sadness or grief I feel. Often the relationships clients build with their therapists are strong ones. There is a bond that develops over time that you come to rely on. But now I have to let it go. Let her go.

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The Heart and the Bottle by Oliver Jeffers

The Heart and the Bottle

I remember when I first came across The Heart and the Bottle. I was in a bookstore looking for a few new picture books. I’ve been a fan of Oliver Jeffers for years; his writing style and the way he illustrates has always spoken to me. However, this book spoke to me on a whole new level.

The story revolves around a little girl, who after an overwhelming loss decides to take her heart out and put it in a bottle. She hopes to keep it safe from pain. As time goes on she begins to realize that without her heart she has become numb to the world around her. As a result, she can’t feel or enjoy anything. The problem is she doesn’t know how to get her heart out of the bottle.

the heart and the bottle

As I read this book to myself, tears welled in my eyes. I could (and still can) relate so much to this little girl. My heart is definitely in a bottle; in a safe place but I feel numb to the world. I’ve dealt with so much hurt, I’m still not sure if I want my heart back. Feelings can be so painful. But even if I wanted it back, like the little girl I don’t know how to get my heart out again.

Can you relate to The Heart and the Bottle? Any advice for me?

To find out more about Oliver Jeffers and his incredible books you can check out his website here. 

There is even a jewelry line based on his books, you can check it out here.

bigbottlenecklace3

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My Bag of Tricks: Self-Care Must Haves

self care

 

One of the many things I learned while at the hospital was the importance of self-care. We were encouraged from the very beginning of our stay to establish a self- care routine. But what is self-care?

When I’m overcome with anxiety I  use something called grounding techniques. These are ways that I bring myself back into the moment so that I can find calm again. Grounding is a big part of self-care. It’s also a big part of maintaining good mental health.

In order to take care of myself during anxious times I’ve put together a list of things that I find helpful.  Maybe you’ll find this list helpful too.

Here’s what’s in my bag of tricks:

1. Rocks- I find rocks grounding. The colours, their texture, their weight. I always carry a couple of them with me.

self-care

2.  Ice Packs- Ice packs work the best for me when it comes to grounding. It’s like they snap me out of a bad dream.

self-care3. Colouring- I’ve always loved to colour so when the adult colouring craze began I hopped right on board. I wrote a post about it here.

 self-care

4. The Alphabet- I know sounds silly, but it takes some time to say the alphabet backwards. Sometimes its all I need to refocus.

self-care

5.  Lavender -The scent of lavender relaxes me. I like to put it in a diffuser, use a a few drops in my bath or even smell it right from the vial.

self-care

6. Wedding Ring- My wedding ring reminds me that I am loved.  It reminds me that I am not alone and that I am safe. It’s a great grounding item because I always have it on.

self-care

 

7. Music- I love making playlists.

self-care

The playlist I use for grounding is below.

  1. All of the Stars by Ed Sheeran
  2. Annies Song by John Denver
  3. Ava’s Song by Adrian Raso
  4. Better Be Home Soon by Crowded House
  5. Brake by Melissa McClelland
  6. Cowboy Take Me Away by The Dixie Chicks
  7. Everything Has Changed by Taylor Swift and Ed Sheeran
  8. Falling Slowly by Once Soundtrack
  9. Ghosttown by Madonna
  10. Gravity by Sara Bareilles
  11. Hallelujah by Leonard Cohen
  12. Harvest Moon by Neil Young
  13. It Aint Me Babe by Jesse Cook
  14. Keep Breathing by Ingrid Michaelson
  15. Let Go by Frou Frou
  16. Looking Back by Adrian Raso
  17. My Mind is Clear by David Young
  18. Take it Easy by Jetta

What songs ease your state of mind?

It took me a while to figure out what would work and what didn’t, but now all of the items on this list help me daily.

What do you have in your bag of tricks? Let me know in the comments!

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Theraspecs and Migraines- A Review

Theraspecs

**I have been given this product as part of a product review through the: Chronic Illness Bloggers Network.   Although the product was a gift, all opinions in this review remain my own and I was in no way influenced by the company.**

  I’ve dealt with a few migraines in my lifetime. It’s like they takeover your entire body and it can make you feel powerless to do anything help yourself.  Ever since the concussion from the car accident two years ago, I’ve had migraines much more frequently, as well as chronic headaches and photophobia (which is an extreme sensitivity to light). I’ve had vision therapy for the last year and a half  with the hope of helping me cope with the headaches and my new vision issues. As part of the vision therapy I was prescribed amber tinted glasses to ease my symptoms. They made an immediate difference but they also cost me $650.00.

When I was offered the opportunity to review Theraspecs for the blog I was intrigued. Would they work as well?

Theraspecs

From their website:

“Theraspecs are tinted eyewear that filter the light that can trigger or worsen problems such as migraines, headaches, eye strain and exhaustion. Clinical research has shown that the eyes and brain do not react to all wavelengths of light in the same way. Some wavelengths—found in everything from sunlight to incandescents—are more likely to activate the nerves in the eye and brain, causing pain and eyestrain in sensitive individuals.

Furthermore, fluorescent lights pulse very rapidly, even when working properly. That rate is too fast to see consciously. However, the brain can still pick up that pulsing as rapid signals from the nerves of the eye. Some repeating patterns, such as visibly flickering lights or even stripes of certain widths, can trigger headaches, eyestrain, migraines, and exhaustion. The pulsing is most intense at certain wavelengths.
The tinting we use in each and every pair of TheraSpecs filters these problematic wavelengths of light, reducing such problems as headaches, eyestrain, migraines, photophobia, and exhaustion” – (www.theraspecs.com)

To find more about how Theraspecs work check out their comprehensive FAQ page here.

There are several styles to choose from and you can order them through their website with your own eyeglass prescription.  I decided on a pair that was for indoor use and would fit over my prescription glasses. I had been wearing my tinted glasses all the time, even at night but I liked the idea of having the option to remove the tinted glasses when the tint wasn’t required.

The pair I ordered sold for $99.00. A big difference in price point from my other pair.

Theraspecs

The glasses arrived quickly after ordering and came in a case. They were light weight and fit over my prescription lenses well. The tint was almost the same colour as my current tinted lenses. Perhaps even a little lighter. I wear them indoors, especially while watching T.V and using the computer. I’ve had them six weeks and I feel they are helping just as much as my doctor prescribed tinted glasses.

Heres what I love:

  • they are lightweight
  • they fit over my prescription glasses comfortably
  • the price point. They are affordable and good value for the money
  • Most importantly-they work!

What I didn’t like:

  • I think I look a little goofy with glasses over glasses but the company does have an in prescription option as well.

Recommended for for those suffering from migraines, headaches, sensitivity to light and eye strain.

For more information about Theraspecs check out www.theraspecs.com

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