Linking here to Chrissy Tiegen's post on losing her baby boy, Jack: "People say an experience like this creates a hole in your heart. A hole was certainly made, but it was filled with the love of something I loved so much. It doesn’t feel empty, this space. It feels full."
Also worth reading if you've ever wondered about what to say or what to do after someone you know experiences a loss like this one.
Pausing to remember the babies who have passed away and all of the parents who have had to say goodbye too soon.
Linking to this article titled "Do You Have 'Zoom Fatigue' or Is It Existentially Crushing to Pretend Life Is Normal as the World Burns?"
A quote from the article: "Is 'time so weird right now,' or have you lost all sense of progression in your life because you no longer have any routine-breaking events or holidays or changes of scenery to look forward to, only the repetitive cycle of the same bland emails to write and the same virus case count graphs to watch and the same harrowing scenes of police brutality to revisit day after day?"
This goes back to how I wrote in this post that World Mental Health Day should be observed every day. How are you really doing? What is the state of your inner life? What are you struggling with? What are you dealing with that no one knows about yet? What are you going to do next?
Saturday, October 10th is World Mental Health Day. It's nice that the importance of mental health is recognized. But our mental health is something that we should be thinking about every day.
What is mental health? In a very basic sense, it's how you're doing overall emotionally, physically, and socially.
What does that mean?
Emotionally: How do you manage your feelings? Change? Difficult times? How do you respond to your thoughts? Are you aware of how your thoughts affect your emotions? And vice versa?
Physically: How are you sleeping? Eating? Are you taking care of your body by exercising?
Socially: How is your social support system? Do you have strong friendships? Family relationships? Is social media helping or hurting you right now?
The World Health Organization gives us a formal definition of mental health:
"Mental health is defined as a state of well-being in which every individual realizes his or her own potential, can cope with the normal stresses of life, can work productively and fruitfully, and is able to make a contribution to her or his community."
That's something to aim for!
How are you doing? Is it time to take some small steps toward better mental health? Or maybe it's time for a bigger step like confiding in a friend about how you're doing? Doing some research on mental health and mental illness? Giving some thought to starting therapy?
Let's pause and think about that this Saturday, October 10th. But let's also keep it in mind every day as we pay attention to how we are doing.
The My3 app gives you a space to think ahead and take care of your future self if you need some extra support. Decide on three people that you can call if you're feeling desperate or if you are wanting to hurt yourself. Make a safety plan ahead of time so that you know what resources are available to you. There is support out there for you, and now it's at your fingertips.
Sharing some reminders this week in line with National Suicide Prevention month.
This is the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline chat page.
September is National Suicide Prevention Month.
Did you know that the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available to anyone feeling suicidal or distressed? Or if you're not feeling good and it's 2am and you need to talk to someone. It's free and confidential. The phone number is 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
There's also a chat function on the website.
There's a specific line for Spanish speakers (1-888-628-9454), and another for Veterans (1-800-273-8255).
Here is all of the information that you need.
There is someone available to talk with you 24/7 if you need support.
I'm linking to this short (17 minutes) New Yorker documentary titled "The Pause: A Brief Contemplation of Scott's Infertility."
It follows a couple over the course of a year after they find out that the husband, Scott, is infertile. He grapples with his grief and his questions. What makes a family? What happens when your family doesn't look like the way you dreamed it would? How do you navigate this as a couple?
July is BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) Mental Health Month.
This post from @browngirltherapy speaks to the specific mental health struggles that children of immigrants may face.
I recently discovered the delightful, whimsical, and encouraging art of Jackie of chibird.com. I love her messages of taking good care of yourself, and treating yourself with gentleness and compassion.
This is yesterday's post about progress. Being productive and making progress can look so differently for each of us depending on so many things.
Are you struggling with feeling "productive" or making progress right now? What's your definition of "productive"? And does that definition fit with what's going on, the stage of life you're in, and the emotional weight that you're carrying?
I’m Elaine Gee-Wong and I'm a therapist with a private practice in Santa Clara, CA.
Any information or advice on this website is for informational purposes only, and should not take the place of information or care provided to you by your physicians, medical, or mental health care professionals.