Category Archives: Mood

Nonversations

Pixie Hollow can be where you  go to get your pixie dust. Where are you going? Photo by Alesia

Pixie Hollow can be where you go to get your pixie dust. Where are you going?

Have you ever been the victim of a nonversation? I have been. Nonversation is defined by the urban dictionary as one person talking and the other person NOT LISTENING. We generation baby boomers are 76 million strong and may be the last group to have known a world without the use of texting, computerizing, and chatting. I am reminded of the comedian Joan Rivers who guest hosted Johnny Carson a number of times in the 1970’s and 80’s who was known for her, “Can we talk?” question usually after she said a risqué joke on his show. Truly can we talk? Why are we not talking? What is happening?
Nonversations are a hindrance as far as I am concerned to genuine communication. Do not get this confused with nonverbal communication. WE all do that when we smile at someone or offer eye contact as a gesture of responsiveness to someone. Nonverbal communication can be destructive also if you roll your eyes at your spouse or a very good friend. These all lend themselves to perceptions. WE all perceive things different especially men versus women.
Today I want to start a series on capturing this very moment and learning about how to deal with being a better communicator. First I want you to know I have been captured by many of you writers/bloggers out there that have touched me in your own way of creating. I see some who use cartoons to make me laugh, others that share breathtaking photography, and of course those as myself trying to make sense of this world around us through writing. I love it all. I am just that kind of person. I want to hear and listen to each person’s viewpoint also.
One of my favorite things I have in my life is a Bible Study I facilitate twice a month. We usually take long breaks between the Christmas holidays and summer time. In ten days we will be back at it with some new materials I have picked up. We will actually be sharing on how to connect better with nature, friendships, resting, forgiveness, and God. I am looking forward to it. I want to have a conversation about all these issues. I have high expectations for myself to learn more. You see I have bought myself some wings and pixie dust a long time ago, but I think I need some new pixie dust. My wings have not flown for some time. Maybe you bloggers have been my pixie dust. I hope in some way my OWN trail of sparkly pixie dust will rub off on you and my “conversation” will enlighten you with breathtaking clarity. Until next time…..to be continued. Photos courtesy of Alesia unless otherwise noted.

Redefining Mental Illness

When I was growing up, mental illness was shunned.  We did not talk about it in my household.  The first time I really heard much about mentally ill people was from my two aunts. They were nurses in a mental hospital for chronic patients in Kentucky.  As a young girl of 16, I was immediately drawn into the strangeness of this new world.  I went up to visit my aunts when they were working and I was able to actually walk the halls with the patients.  I was not scared, but what impressed me most about these sick folks was how they mostly kept to themselves. They talked to themselves and did not seem to notice the world around them.  One man did come up to me saying some jibberish that had to do with eatting Ronald Reagan’s liver for lunch and I said, “I hope it tasted good.”  I did not know what to say and as many of you know I do have a strange sense of humor.

When I became a Registered Nurse, I left the crazy world my aunts loved to concentrate most of my nursing in critical care or post operative surgery.  I thought this kind of nursing was a much safer world for me.  I guess I was fooled. However, the world of Mental Health never left my personal life.  In 1993, I welcomed  a beautiful baby boy named Luke.  He would be diagnosed with PDD-NOS or Pervasive developmental disorder not otherwise specified.  Later this was just noted as Autism.  My world as I knew it was shaken to its core.

You see a panel of experts in 1994 had completed a new revision of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) that would be used by the medical community to identify and diagnose children like mine with Autism.  They say 20% of the population has some form of mental illness.  I think it is higher, but what do I know.

This year a revised version of the DSM ( ONLY fifth revision since its creation in 1952) came out. Many folks in the medical community are up in arms about it.  Change is not easy.   My concern is more that we do not let the new DSM take away the much needed health care  for individuals who need it to function in everyday life.  Globally this book will be used to diagnose, but in America this book is hugely significant to the ordinary person because if a person is not diagnosed, one does not get the dollars from their health insurance.  This concerns me.  I think time will tell how all this plays out especially with Obamacare taking root in the next year or so. In general I applaud the mental health community for updating the book.  It needed to be done.

I also want to mention that I fear for the over diagnosing of individuals with mental illness.  A word of advice:  Do not take a pill for every whim and especially do not put a child on a pill to mask symptoms until you really understand what is going on.  Patience is needed .  Do not be in a rush.  Where the heck you going anyway?  It has taken many years of finding the right medication for Luke.  He is on two main meds right now and is functioning fairly well on them.  He is monitored very closely by doctors we have found in our community we trust in Seattle.

Luke and Linus enjoying some much needed rest time.

Luke and Linus enjoying some much needed rest time.