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Staying sober in a pandemic, what's in your toolbox?

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What a day...seriously. I started it with a message reminding me of my own recovery journey and a tarot reading that warned grief in my connection to others lay in this day. Of course I assumed that meant Covid19, but it didn’t. The universe had words to lay on my soul, and I recorded them. As I sat and rewatched my own message I realized that these words were meant for me, and to be shared.

What we are experiencing right now is NOT NORMAL.
It IS HARD. If not seemingly impossible and hopeless at times.
This is what my brain wants me to believe.
But my tools in my 2.5 year old toolbox (not sure why I call it toolkit in the video) tell me I can do the impossible.

I’m not drunk during a pandemic. I’m not high. And today, I am alive.
We don’t have to make this worse. We don’t have to numb. And we do not have to be alone.
So today, if you see or hear or watch or read nothing else...know this: YOU ARE LOVED.
I love you, so much.

Blessed be,
Dr. Jessica

Need help, ask for it. Or find me in I…

So you think you know loneliness...

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When I was little, I thought being alone was awesome. No one to interrupt my favorite part in the story. I easily weaved my life around whether I felt like being around other people or not. A true introvert that require recharging after just enough socialization. As I grew up, I realized there were many layers to loneliness. There was the loneliness of being talked about behind your back, the loneliness of having a secret you cannot share, the loneliness of pain, the loneliness of hope. Loneliness can take the shape of a friend that doesn't answer your phone calls or texts or responds to emails once every six months. Loneliness is the family members that choose not to speak to you or talk only of themselves. Loneliness is not being heard or seen. Loneliness exists in the expectations of others. 
I didn't know loneliness could exist with love. I knew that lack of love, and loss, could lead to lonely. But I thought love was a sacred place free of loneliness. After all, love must …

Chicken Salad Miracle

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It's far easier to sink into the overwhelm of a society, a world, thrown into chaos than breathe deep in the moments of safety and love that surround most of us daily. And now I give you my disclaimer on how that statement is in no way intended to downplay the severity of this pandemic, but rather highlight the very human experience most of us spend so much time and energy trying to shed. Life does not exist in some happy utopia. Suffering and hardships are all around. For many of us, right now may be our first real experience of this, and we simply do not know how to react.

My suggestion, don't.
Don't react.
Instead, lean in. Open your eyes wider, Feel the feelings, Take a deep breath and sit a moment in the pause. When the overwhelm subsides you will be left with a choice, how will you RESPOND?

Seems simple enough, but rest assured, it's not. And I am no pro at it. It's still one of those things I fight mightily. I don't like to accept life on life's term…

I define me, and this is ME.

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The thing about choosing to heal is that as you do, people will leave your life.  I know this sounds contradictory, but I assure you it is true. Healing, truly healing, is a path few can take in a lifetime. Some traumas are nestled too deep. Some die before they reach that point. Some simply have no desire to even try. For those that do, it is messy. Growth is messy. And the relationships that may have existed and benefited pre-healing, will not always continue to serve us into our next chapter. All relationships end eventually. It's a hard fact of life. The best approach to this is to accept what happens. There are many ways this will occur. You may easily drift a part, you may be slammed with hurt feelings over you not meeting certain expectations, you may be accused of being someone or something other than who you are, or a life will end. And while it's acceptable to own where your healing path may have impacted others, it is not okay to compromise your authenticity to dea…