If You Meet the Devil at the Crossroads

Desperation aching 
 Sinful things calling
Sensual body shaking
Crossroads will be your falling
If you go to the crossroads
the devil will meet you there
Lose your lonesome wandering
the  payment won’t be fair
Make your choice my orphan child
the devil will take your fare
After all what do you have to lose?
All you have is what you wear
If you go to the lonesome crossroads
the devil will make your deal
You will reach your dreams
but nothing is for free 

Comparing Ourselves to Others…Shame, abuse, mental illness

This was my response to one of the comments I got on a post. I will not say which person commented but they can feel free to comment here if they want to do so. The reason I am posting this, is because I feel that the concern they had was one I have heard many times from people with mental illness, abuse and psychological injury. 

People who have mental pain, have trouble in day to day situations, where other people seem to float right through. Everyone around us seems to have a better handle on just getting through life, than we do. It is so easy to become discouraged by watching other people do things that we either cannot do, or cannot do without mental anguish.

I wanted this reader and all of you, to understand that we are not being fair to ourselves when we compare ourselves to other people. If we are comparing ourselves to someone who has no mental suffering , then how is that comparison fair to us? 

This was my response to a comment that talked about feeling shame, and comparing ourselves to  other people.

People are good at things that they have had the background, the support, and the early wiring to be good at. Even the things we learn when we are older, are easier to learn if we were wired properly when we were growing up.

A lot of the people you are comparing yourself to had parents that helped them to follow the normal development stages and they also had the mental stability to process all of the stages properly, in order for the neurons in their brains to be set up to do these things.

There are chemicals involved in every process we do. The chemicals in our brains are dominating our feelings and our feelings affect how well we can do things. We have behavioral patterns and they are also linked to the organic connections (neurons and chemicals) in our brains.

If there is any trauma, abuse, neglect during childhood / teenage hood, we can end up with things that are not wired properly. We also end up with the chemicals sending the wrong signals and we feel depression, anxiety and worthlessness about ourselves.

Your feelings of not being as good as other people are conditioned behavioral patterns of your brain. Past trauma, abuse or neglect may have caused these patterns. Your inability to things that other people do, may be related to feeling inadequate to do them, feeling depressed, anxiety etc. This is not your fault that you have these chemical, neurological responses to doing things.

If you feel anxiety about something and someone else does not feel that, then of course they will be able to do that thing, better and more easily than you can. It is not fair to yourself to compare your brain on depression or anxiety with their brain that is functioning perfectly well. It does not mean that you can never learn to do it, but it means that it is much harder for you to do things, than it is for them.

When we have mental illness issues, it is more fair to us, if we so not compare ourselves directly with people who do not have any mental illness or trauma in their background. I have recently come to believe this is true

I spent many years wondering why I felt so inadequate to everyone and why I felt so out of place. I had so much trauma in my back ground that I could not keep up with the people that had brains that functioned normally. It was not that I was not as smart, but it was because my brain was and is so traumatized.

I am learning that we have to be kind to ourselves. In order to be kind to ourselves, we have to understand and feel compassion for the fact that trauma, abuse, neglect, depression, anxiety and any other mental issues, does cause us some disability. We cannot always compete with the other people.

We can learn to heal and to slowly rewire our brains. But mostly we have to talk to ourselves like we would talk to someone else that we knew was having trouble feeling as good as everyone else. You are as good as everyone else, whether you can do everything they can do or not.

We all have gifts and are good at things. You might be good at something that those other people suck at. I bet you are better are being compassionate for another human that feels depressed and worthless. The ability to be compassionate is not a gift that a lot of people have. Compassion is a lost art these days. People who have mental suffering can often also be compassionate to others who have depression and anxiety. That makes you better than them at something.

You are also probably better are being introspective and analyzing things.  Many people  just go with the flow of what everyone else is doing and they do not think for themselves. If you can think for yourself then you are better at that too.

I think that we are just better at different things than most people are. There is room for us in the world too. The world cannot be ok, of all of the people just follow the crowd and are all good at the same things.

I hope this helps a little. You are a unique, independent person that can think, care and love. That makes you special and no one is better than you.
Blessings,
Annie

Once we begin to forgive ourselves for how we are, then it gets easier to live with ourselves. People with psychological trauma usually end up with some kind of post traumatic stress disorder, anxiety, depression, OCD or other mental disorder. These disorders can be permanent , because the trauma never goes away. But we can learn to shoq kindness to ourselves.

We can learn to be functional, compassionate people. There are plenty of things we can be good at. If we cannot answer the phones for a job, because we have social anxiety then so be it.  If we cannot work at certain types of jobs because we are constantly triggered onto post traumatic stress there, then so be it.

A person with an eating disorder may not be able to work in a bakery. Well if they cannot do that, it does not make them less than anyone else. It just means that they cannot do that activity safely  because of their disorder. Someone who has a phobia of open spaces cannot work in the mall. So, what of it?

We are ok the way we are. We are trying to heal. We are trying to connect with others. If there are things we cannot do, then so be it. It is not because we are less than anyone else. They did not grow up, or have the adult past that we have had. Someone else may not have survived your situations as well as you did. How do they know what it is like in your world?

We all need a break from feeling shame, inadequacy, and worthlessness. We need to show ourselves some kindness and compassion in our thoughts about ourselves. We are doing the best we can with what we have to work with. We have to work with our brains being the way they are, right at this very minute.

Blessings to all,

Annie

You Matter!

you matter

There is Always Hope

there is always hope annie

Don’t give up! Sometimes things seem hopeless and life feels like it is not worth it. Things will get better. You matter. There is always HOPE!

Much Love,

ANNIE

Excerpt from – Julianna’s Mental Prison – Short Story by Annie

“It is a truly terrifying thing, watching someone completely break from reality. Watching and listening helplessly as they cross over into a place of complete and utter darkness.

A place so terrifying that the best horror movies just barely scratch the surface,” Roshelle trailed off and stared at her shoes.

Then she continued with emphasis, “To allow someone to bring you inside of their violent, dark, twisted and terrifying delusions is a dangerous mistake.”

“It would be a mistake for anyone. But for someone gifted with compassion and empathy like Julianna, it was a deadly mistake. Terrifying beyond the worst thoughts, the worst nightmares, the worst fears you could possibly imagine.

So terrifying that she used to groan in the middle of the night. Not a normal human groaning but a animal-like howling, sounding from very pits of primal fear. The hellish utterances of complete mental anguish.” Roshelle shivered a little and pulled her knitted wrap  up around her shoulders.

Bruce sat in silence for a few minutes and found himself buttoning up the last few buttons on his overcoat. Finally he stammered, “Poor Julianna. She suffered unfairly.”

Roshelle forgave him for his lack of being able to verbally express his horror at her vivid description of Julianna’s anguish. It was simply unfathomable that Julianna could have endured such suffering and torment for so many years.

Body Image and Eating Disorders, Young Women and the Media – Let’s Be Proactive for Our Girls

Body Image issues seem to be part of life for women and girls these days. The magazines still show these anorexic looking models. They should know better than to only show the super thin models.

There are plenty of perfectly beautiful girls and women that are a size 9 , size 12 and size 16 and more.

Magazines create the illusion that the perfect body image is thin. It has been proven that girls look at these models as a role model for body image.

There has been an increase in eating disorders over the last several decades (research by Pyle, Halvorson, Neuman and Mitchell). Research shows that there are 10 times the amount of articles and advertisements promoting weight loss in women’s magazines as compared to men’s.

In a study by Irving in 1990, there was evidence that women exposed to pictures of thin models experienced a drop in self esteem and a dissatisfaction with their body weight.

Young women ( and some young men) are becoming ill and some are dying due to the irresponsibility of the media to show the truth. Internalization of a thin ideal weight has a direct correlation with body dissatisfaction and consequently eating disorders.

The young girls see the super skinny, computer enhanced images and think this is normal. They wonder what is wrong with them and think they need to starve themselves to be beautiful.

The results of this are malnutrition, inhibited development, slower cognitive function, lower test scores, severe anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, suicide and other co-morbidities. Anorexia can cause muscle tissue loss, heart failure and brain damage.

There becomes a tremendous sense of lack of control of their bodies which turns into mental illnesses. In their attempt to match these super skinnies, they end up losing their beautiful figure and becoming a malnourished person who has a lower resistance to infection and disease.

Is this how we want things to continue?

The media needs to take some responsibility and be held accountable for the unrealistic body image they are portraying.

Be vigilant with your daughters, sisters, friends and students. Point out the pictures of the skinny, anorexic looking models and tell your them that it is unhealthy and not the norm. The average size of adult women in the US is size 12, not size 2.

The girls think that men only like skinny women. This is not true. Men love women of all shapes and sizes. Men have individual preferences. Let the girls know that there are lots of men who love curvy women.
Protect our young women with awareness!
God Bless,
Namaste,
Annie

Addiction

My hands
How they tremble
I’m afraid
I’m afraid

My ears
How they ring
I’m afraid
I’m afraid

My heart
In my chest
Will it stop?
Will it stop?

The pain
How it streams
Will it stop?
Will it stop?

My knees
How they buckle
I can’t walk
I can’t walk

I collapse
To the floor
I can’t walk
I can’t walk

I hear voices
Outside
Don’t come in
Don’t come in

A knock
At the door
Don’t come in
Don’t come in

I’m trying
To reach
So much pain
So much pain

The reaching
Is hard
So unfair
So unfair

The bottle
It’s taunting me
Here,
I’m right here

The pills
Have contempt
For their pet
For their pet

The bottle
In hand
Feels so cold
Feels so cold

Trembling
Worsens
Damn the cap
Turn the cap

My hands
How they tremble
Please open
Please open

The pills
How they mock me
In charge
They’re in charge

In charge
Of my life
I feel small
I feel small

Try
Not to drop them
Be careful
Be careful

They
Spill to the floor
I’m afraid
I’m afraid

I crawl
On the floor
Face down
On my knees

Blowing off
The dust
Put them back
Put them back

Just one
Then I wait
Time will tell
Time will tell

If just one
Is enough
This is Hell
This is Hell

Time to wait
For my fate
Passes slow
Passes slow

The voices
Outside
Getting close
Getting close

No where
To hide
Please don’t knock
Please don’t knock

Such terror
Within
Lock the door
Lock the door

If I scream
They will hear
Try to breath
Try to breath

The voices
Don’t know
I’m in pain
I’m in pain

The terror
Increasing
Don’t knock
Please don’t knock

Then slowly
Those pills
Start to help
Start to help

Def con
Goes down
On alert
On alert

Threat levels
down
Just for now
Just for now

My brain
Starts to clear
Very slow
Very slow

Such
Terrible fear
No one knows
No one knows

Completely
alone
In the dark
In the dark

The time
On the clock
2pm
2pm

The others
Would judge
I feel shame
I feel shame

But the pills
Are in charge
How they mock
How they mock

No mercy
Or grace
Not from them
Not from them

Forgiveness
Must come
From myself
From myself

It’s so hard
to find
The way out
The way out

Too much
To endure
I’m ashamed
I’m ashamed

Put the
Bottles away
They will wait
They will wait

They know
I’ll return
So afraid
So afraid

To live life
Without them
Such pain
Too much pain

And so
It will go
It is sad
It is sad

Addiction
Wins over
Each time
Everytime

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