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Feeling My Way Through the Dark

I wouldn’t call what I’m going through right now an episode. It hardly captures what happens on a day to day — sometimes hour to hour — basis. The difficulties I’ve been facing is a part of the reason I haven’t posted in a while. It’s hard for me to share what I’m going through while it runs its course. Oftentimes, those close to me have no idea the depth of my internal pain. But…

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Mindfulness: The Space Between Stimulus & Response

I have an old friend that has been in my life for twenty years. He has always helped me sort out the many questions and confusions that constantly float in and around my head. What I do for him I sure don’t know, but I’m glad that we’re in each other’s lives. It’s been over a year since I sat in his office with his rambunctious puppy playing besides him. Today his puppy is fully…

“Perhaps the biggest tragedy of our lives is that freedom is possible, yet we can pass our years trapped in the same old patterns…We may want to love other people without holding back, to feel authentic, to breathe in the beauty around us, to dance and sing. Yet each day we listen to inner voices that keep our life small.”

Tara Brach, Radical Acceptance

Between the stimulus and response there is a space, and in this space lies our power and our freedom.

Viktor Frankl

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Being Okay with the Process & the Hard Work of Treatment

You’ll have set backs, no doubt. You’ll want to give up, for sure. But you’ve been on this journey before. You’ve built your life up again. And though it may seem that it’s never been worse, that you’ll never change, that you’ll always be falling apart by the seams, all of it is a part of the process. Remember what it’s like to begin again? It’s damn hard at the start. As a boxer you’ve…

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Lessons Learned on the Psychiatric Inpatient Unit

Two psychiatrists looked at me as I stared at the floor. It’s been a week since I was admitted and to the them, it was clear I was still battling a depressive episode. To me, I couldn’t see anything beyond the pain. I hunched over in the chair and covered my eyes. I was shaking, doing everything I could  to hold it together. All I could think of was how hard I tried in the…

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Committing to Treatment in Dialectical Behavior Therapy

I sat across from my therapist, avoiding her eyes. She was asking a lot from me. A few weeks ago I resorted back to my old, destructive behaviors and continued to believe they would work. Self-injury makes the pain go away, I justified. In a weird, paradoxical way, giving in to the urge not only makes the urge disappear but also keeps suicide at bay. “Listen, Amanda,” my therapist said, “if we’re going to work…

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Starting Over Again and Again

I know it’s been a while since I last posted. In fact, I almost called it quits on this project. I was feeling so well I decided we were ready to grow our family. I wanted to also help the family by earning a respectable income, so I took up more freelance projects. I was even off my psychiatric medication (with my doctor’s blessing) for the first time in fifteen years. Life was going forward…

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DBT & Boxing: Practice What You Know Until It’s in Your Bones

Mike Tyson did an interview during his prime and was asked whether or not he needed a trainer since he was the world champion. He answered quickly, “I know it all, I just don’t execute all of it. My trainer’s job is to is to continuously train me until I do it right. I know everything, I just don’t do everything.” Some would say it was out of conceit, but I think there is a…