I don’t know what it is lately, but the best company is myself, alone.  Which is ironic cause I know right now I am not my best self.  I don’t know what that even really looks like actually, good question… what does my best self look like.  Personally.  I don’t know. Does anyone?

It’s been awhile since I wrote in this blog… It’s been months, I don’t know why.  I want to say the reason is because I have been so much better…  I have conquered my depression, I am happy now. I am O.K.  But, in being completely honest to my self now.  That’d be horribly false.   It was a hectic month of March.  Hockey ended and I left my old job, thankfully and started a new one.  Which has been absolutely amazing.  The people at the new job have been nothing short of phenomenal; the job itself has been much the same.  So that’s been a significant change…for the better.  It’s been a big change, especially mood wise. I am happy with my new job. I am happy at work… And, while I am happier, when I am happy, that down, empty, withdrawn emotion has not really left.   As people who also suffer from depression can attest too, we can make these changes, like a new job for example and we can be happier when we are happy, but we can still be depressed, and still be down, empty, or sad.  And, I still am.  It sometimes can create a challenge, in that it’s misleading.  Sometimes, including the entire month of March, and more so beginning of this month, I’d think I am doing great… because, I am happier when I am happy, but, I am still going through these lows, and lulls but its easier to waiver them because, the highs are high.  Which, in the moment seems like all we need.

Do I think I’ve been doing better? Yes. I do.  But, am I 100% removed of my illness?  No, and I don’t know that I will ever be.  There are days where I have accepted that, and then days where I am afraid of that.  Days where I don’t think I’ll ever make it to see if I can ever rid myself of this illness.  Then some days, most days, the thought is… It’s ok.  I can manage it, I am happy right now….  Those are the thoughts when I am doing ok…. Which, is for the most part, more then I am sad, down or empty.  Which… right now, that’s how I keep score in this battle, and the winner is frequently changing.  No one can keep a damn lead.

Part of the problem I think of late has been that it’s that difficult time of the year for myself, and my family.  It’s nearing May 7th…  May 7th will be the 5-year anniversary of my sister passing away.  Every year, it seems that a few weeks leading up to this day is extremely difficult.  As my mom put it today… It’s the “pre-anniversary depression” And, that’s exactly what it is.  I’ve slowly started to notice it take over.  Daily, I think about May 7th.  I think about the May 7th five years ago, and I think about the May 7th coming up in 3 weeks.  I am afraid of it. I am nervous.  I just have no idea what to expect from myself.  Every year it’s the same thing. Am I going to be ok? Am I going to be sad? Am I going to miss it? Am I going to do things the right way? Am I?… Am I?… Am I?… I just work myself up so much for the day, overthinking and overanalyzing just about everything.  I try to just let it be another day. But, it’s not. So how can I. How can I even bother pretending, and I just hate that suggestion.  There have been years in the past where May 7th seemed like a manageable day itself, and when it’s over I’m almost relieved… but feeling slightly guilty because I thought it was maybe easier then it should have been?  Then, there have been some years where May 7th is a completely overbearing and emotionally fucking exhausting day.  What I fear the most is I don’t know which one of these two days it’s going to be.  And, I think about it. Hourly, making the lead up to May 7th… almost worse then the actual day itself.  Last year, it was manageable because I was able to avoid the build up.  One day I was Venice, then I was in Bari, then I was in Corfu, then Santorini, then Katakolon, then Kusadasi, then Zurich… Avoiding the lead up to May 7th was a breeze.  The actual day itself, I remember it still being difficult.  I was in Zurich. I was my other self.  Quiet. Empty. Withdrawn.  But nothing out of what is normal for me. I was still Ok.  I think.  It’s easy to look back and say that now.  But, I was in Europe. I was with people.  For some reason, on that day, alike the others I almost always want to be alone.  Which, in turn is likely the worst idea possible.  I feel like, because it’s such a challenging day for me, I don’t want to bring other people into my misery.  Into my world.  But, I think that’s exactly what I need is to lean on my support group of friends, and family that day… At least that’s what they tell me anyways.  But for me, I feel as though, as much as I maybe wish it to be “just another day” for me like it is for all else, it just isn’t and I shouldn’t nuance someone else to become involved.   I can remember in previous years though, it’s almost like I’ve been upset, or annoyed at people not knowing that it’s May 7th.  And, what that means for me.  I have a hard time remembering that IT IS just another day for everyone else.  Why should they act, or say something differently to me… and if they did act differently, I’d probably hate that equally as much, if not more!

It’s just like, as I’ve wrote about before… When my sister passed away and I thought the world would stop. I thought it did.  It certainly did for me…But, people still walked and got the mail, they still cut their grass and they still took their dogs for walks.  I couldn’t believe it. It didn’t seem right.  That’s almost how I feel about every May 7th now.  The world stops for me.  It’s almost as if it should stop entirely.  People will still go to work, they will still walk their dogs and get the mail and in 3 weeks that will astound me.  It’s doesn’t emotionally make sense for me!

Nonetheless, this year, right now.  I am no question deep into the “pre-anniversary depression” There is no doubt it is hitting me hard right now.  I won’t deny that.  That’s what started this entire blog, was not denying my depression… right! … And, to be honest, I have been denying it to myself the last few weeks.  But, right now… given the extenuating mental, and emotional circumstances… I’d be lying to that self to say I am at my best right now, and don’t take it personally, or to heart if I come across a tad withdrawn… It’s just that season for me. It’s a challenging time.

It’s coming on five years, and I feel like it’s just the other day Jen & I were with mom on Whyte Ave at O’Byrnes in Edmonton enjoying a Stella.  I can remember even the exact spot I had parked my car.  I can remember what everyone was wearing…

Here is a picture of us having a beer at O Byrnes.  Last beer I had with her.

Here is a picture of us having a beer at O Byrnes. Last beer I had with her.

This would be the last time I ever enjoyed a beer with my sister.  It felt like it was last weekend.

I miss her.  And days like these, and weeks coming… I think about her more then ever, and more then anything…and in part I work myself up more then is healthy.

… Bare with me

 

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 I wrote this entry about 10 days ago as I was boarding my flight home from Hawaii, It took me awhile to post, but I have finally settled back into my routine at home, and here it is for you to read if you wish!   

 Sitting here, in one those gimmick-y massage chairs that you find in the malls, and airports.  Except, the difference is.  I am sitting in this chair because it remains larger than those plastic chairs in this airport, and without my last american dollar bill, it is still leather.  However, I will not waste my last american dollar on a 3 minute massage that will likely ruin my back within seconds.  So, I will sit here, and allow the thing to blink at me, and tell me to put money into as long as I feel comfortable, and sane. Fortunately there is only 3 people within my visibility of this lengthy hallway, that stretches across about 10 airport gates.  Yes, I am finally leaving my beloved Hawaiian Islands and am returning home, to the real world.  It’s been an exceptionally amazing 15 days in Hawaii.  Having spent 10 days in Maui, and the last 5 days in Waikiki on the island of Oahu with my girlfriend, Amanda. I’ve been fortunate enough to go to Hawaii for extended periods of time the last couple years as well.  However, this year, was different and better then all of the rest, despite my 15 days being the least amount of time I have stayed on the islands.   I know, I’ve been pretty lucky.  But, this time, I was able to spend the first few days in a condo, with my mom, grandparents, my niece and my brother Brody.  All of whom, are people I only see a couple of times a year.  Especially, my grandparents and Abbey.

 It was a different vacation, in our condo we had my grandparents, my mother, my 7 year old niece, and my 13 year old brother, and then myself.  Every person was in a different age bracket, and some in Hawaii for their first ever time.  We of course, all had a different idea of what a holiday looked like, and a few times this resulted in some people being edgier then they would be otherwise, but whats a Courchene get together with a little wit, rift and edge.  Probably not a Courchene gathering, at all!  Nonetheless, It was an awesome couple of days, my brother and I spent most of the time together, walking around, hanging out at the beach, boogey boarding and chucking around a half sized water football that I could chuck better then Elway.  But, just being in the company of some people who are really important to me was above all what made the holiday one that I will never forget.  My mom and brother left about 4 days after my arrival, however, my grandparents and niece stayed another handful of days.  Later in the week, myself, my grandparents and Abbey had a nice dinner with the Fedyna family at their place.  This was probably one of the best days ever, and not just on the trip, but in recent memory.  Amanda’s dad was beyond generous, again in housing me probably longer than anyone should, and then as well, inviting my family over and making a terrific surf and turf meal yet.  I can’t remember a time seeing so many people in the same small place, having so much fun, and just being generally happy.  Especially us!  It was awesome.  I wish that my mom and brother would have still been there, to complete the presence of our family, and as well, Jen.  But, I know she was there with us still.  It was just awesome.  I can’t say enough about how special that night was, and how thankful I am too the Fedynas for making it happen.  What made the night even more special, was my grandpa and I having a race in the pool.  My grandpa is in terrific shape for his age (haha) but, he really is, it’s amazing.  He got up and snorkelled nearly every morning.  I snorkelled for about 3 seconds and hated it and vowed to never do it again.  He does it every day. So he is a terrific swimmer.  And, I am not a terrible swimmer, though it certainly isn’t graceful.  I do get to where I need to go pretty quickly in the water.  But, Grandpa thought I would have no chance against him in a race.  And, no one else really took my side either.  2 strangers watching in the pool decided to have a countdown for us, and were apparently betting.  I was pretty confident that I’d beat the man, so I suggested we throw some money down.  Well, much to his surprise and of the strangers husband, I was 50 dollars richer. Thanks Pa.  Nice try though.  I am still too young, and too athletic.  Despite my greek olympian-like figure.

Anywho.  As special as that night was, it concluded their holiday, and off too Victoria the three of them went in the AM.  But, it was an awesome 9 days spending half of that with my mom and Brody, and then more time with G&G and Abbey.  I loved it.  I missed them so much.

Amanda and I headed off too Honolulu together within the next couple of days.  Honolulu is probably one of my favourite cities I have ever been too.  Aside from the pure beauty of the place, the greenery, ocean, mountains…etc,  It’s just a really cool place.  The layout of the island is pretty neat, and the history is just amazing.  Of course, Pearl Harbour.  As well, the military feel too the city is something that I find so cool.  Driving around you’ll see different Air Force Bases, Naval Stations.  It’s awesome.  I love that stuff.  I know that the city is not all the peaches and cream that you see along Waikiki, and at the North Shore.  It can be a pretty tough city, and if I am not mistaking, I believe crime is pretty bad in Honolulu.  And if it isn’t, by the sounds of sirens, and the presence of police, you would never think otherwise.  But, I like Oahu too because it is just a real place.  As much as I like Maui, and some other places I have been.  They just don’t seem real.  To me, Honolulu is a real place.  It’s beautiful.  But, our 5 days in Oahu is coming to a halt here in the next 45 minutes or so as I will board my flight home, and Amanda has already taken off back to Maui to spend another couple weeks with her parents.  But, This has been an awesome trip.  We did a tonne within our 5 days here, Taking in the final round of the Sony Open, Spending probably too much time at the Ala Moana shopping centre, we did a drive around the island after stopping in at the dreadful Dole Plantation Farm.  We went through Haleiwa – Surf City USA, then checked out where the Banzai Pipeline action is, and the surf there was still pretty good.  About 8-10 feet. Then, we just continued driving along the shores till we made it back to Waikiki.  What a beautiful drive.  If I am fortunate enough to come back here, I am going to write off 2 days and just drive around, drive through the different towns and cities, check out the Hickam AFB and the Naval Stations, and again spend an entire day at Pearl Harbour.  I just love Honolulu.  I am sad too be leaving, but I am excited to get back to life, and get back with the Bisons, and see what lies ahead in 2013 for the kid!  Hopefully the year continues to be as great as it has been the last 15 days!

What the hell…. The massage chair beside me just randomly started going off, and no one is sitting in it, or has put any money in it.  Weird.  Thanks for reading!! Aloha!

Blair

@Blairlystang

 

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Wow.  What a couple of days.  I don’t even know where to begin, other than once again I am truly disappointed in mankind, and our society.  After, yet, another devastating, senseless tragedy.   Yet, another.  That’s sickening.  28 people dead in a small USA town, and we say yet again.  Brutal.  But, true.

First, I would like to pass along my utmost best for all of the victims, and their families, friends, and neighbors.  I can not imagine the unbelievable grief you are going through right now, I just can’t imagine.  There are no words to really alleviate any of the pain you are feeling either.  But know, I do, and will continue to pray for you, and pray for mankind.  Because, it clearly is in dire need.

Since this tragedy has occurred, it has left me feeling in absolute shock, disbelief and more than anything left me just confused and disappointed.  Those of you that know me well enough, know that the lone soft-spot in my heart is for young children.  I hate seeing them hurt.  Even if it is as trivial as them crying it breaks my heart.  Even in movies, and TV shows, if the youngster is being hurt, or something bad is happening.  Instantly I am devastated.  This is part of the problem with Criminal Minds.  I don’t know why they can’t leave the damn kids alone.  I can’t put a finger on why I am like this. I just am. Maybe its because growing up, my brother was a youngster, as he is 10 years my junior.  And, I couldn’t then, and still can not imagine anything bad happening to him. Even now that he is 13.  Same with my niece Abbey.  And, any other young child.  Maybe it’s because they are just so harmless, carefree and defenseless. Nothing bad SHOULD ever happen to them.  Especially at the hands of an adult.  It’s sickening that stuff ever does happen.  This is why I think this mass shooting has left me more upset, and disappointed than any of the previous.  And, after the other shootings, I felt the same way.  Just sickened, confused, frustrated and upset. But, this one.  How someone could be capable too hurt so many young children. I just can’t understand it.  I have tried to put my finger on it the last few days, and I just can’t.  I can’t understand why anyone would shoot up a high school, a movie theatre, a temple, a mall, a coffee shop, a university.  These are all places where we should feel safe, and free.  Not where we need to worry about our fucking safety, or lives for that matter.  But that is changing, and changing quickly.  After trying to understand these recent events, I simply just could not.  Gun control, yes.  I agree something needs to be done.  But, is it simply just gun control.  I don’t think so.  If Obama constructs, and passes some kind of law restricting gun control..  Would these tragedies come to a complete halt?  Hmm.  While, I think that this would drastically help, and I think it needs to be done ASAP.  No. I don’t think it would bring these events to a halt.  These gunman are absolutely deranged, and gone from reality.  They’re going to find ways to acquire weapons to enable them to do these things.  Whether they steal them, or build other means of destruction; bombs.  Or whatever else have you.

One common thing about these mass-gunmen is they are, obviously as I said, completely gone, and deranged.  But, they are incredibly smart people.  At least the reports on Lanza have suggested that, and well, thanks too CNN and ABC, we each could write a 10 page biography on James Holmes.  The kid was pretty bright.  Which, makes this all the scarier.  These guys will find ways.  Adam Lanza was a 20 year old kid.  Now, IMO, without knowing the complete laws and politics of gun control in the USA.  A 20 year old kid simply should not be able to purchase a weapon.  Period. Especially the weapons that Lanza had. What the hell does a 20 year old kid need those kind of weapons for? For hunting dinner? No. For killing people, and mass destruction.  Hmm. Probably.  But, He didn’t purchase these weapons legally, on his own like previous gunmen have.  They were his MOTHERS! Now why in the hell does a single mother living in a house of 4,000 square feet with one child, why the hell does she have these weapons!  To hunt, and find dinner.  Probably not.  She already lives in a massive home, I can’t imagine a wealthy, divorcee is out in the woods daily hunting meals.  But, to protect herself from other potential crazed gunmen.  Probably.  This is completely wrong in itself.  I don’t know if this is the reason she had all these weapons, and I am certainly not blaming her for this.  It is by no means, her fault.  She too was a victim, But, that is just how americans are.  They, themselves have guns, to protect themselves from other people who have guns.  Just don’t have the fucking things in the first place!  I am 23 years old.  I live in a city of >1,000,000 in a rather affluent community, and I would be completely ignorant to think that people don’t shoot other people in my city, or in Canada, because it happens.  Often. But,  Do we have guns?  No. Hell, I have never even in my life shot a damn gun!  Have we done just fine, and lived our lives safely to this point.  You bet.  Have we ever felt the need for a gun. Nope.  Have we had encounters where someone may be trying to break into our house.  Yep.  Have I thought, damn, if only I had a gun! Nope. I didn’t.  Actually, It didn’t even cross my mind.  I do not hunt, and I do not live in fear.  Thus, I do not need a weapon.  Americans.  They either hunt, and have a gun.  Or, they live in fear, and have a gun.  And, to be honest.  How can you blame them for living in fear after all these tragic events have occurred. But,  they are doing it themselves.  And, when the crazed gunman is unable to purchase guns from Wal-Mart, 7-11, or wherever the fuck they get them.  Hey, I’ll take them from my mom.  What. The. Fuck.  Gun Control.  Is it the single solution.  I don’t think it’s the only one.  But, it’s a big player.  And needs to change.  Now.  And, while the NRA nerds will raise their rifles and say guns didn’t kill those children, guns didn’t kill those people in the movie theatre.  They’re clearly gone too.  What did then.  Did the gun grow legs and walk into Sandy Hook.  No.  But, did a crazed, deranged individual know that if he were in control of that rifle, then he could walk into wherever he pleased and kill people.  Yep.  For some reason, no body has gone into these mass killings, and decided to kill people with a knife or a bow & arrow, hell, even his fists.  No.  They’ve done it with guns, Why, because guns fucking kill people!   Wake the fuck up America.  And, I don’t think I am the only canadian who has lived his life this freely without access to a weapon.  I actually don’t know anyone who owns one.  Exception, my old man because he is an avid hunter.  I just don’t get why some of these americans don’t think guns is at all a problem.

I was on twitter I came across an arguement between a few americans after looking through the NRA timeline.  This moron suggested that the teachers should have been armed with guns so they could have killed Lanza, as soon as he walked in with a weapon.  This makes me sick on so many levels.  Again, we blame the victims, and the heros.  Those teachers, and children were heros.

Now, let me rephrase this, and paint a visual in your mind.  This moron thinks that a grade 1 teacher, who teaches in a classroom, likely full of encouraging, cheerful posters, childrens drawings, paintings everywhere, she should be armed with a gun. Say, in her desk. Just in case.  A grade ONE teacher, should be armed with a gun. Just incase a crazed man enters.  A grade ONE teacher. Are you kidding me.  Talk about teaching children in a safe environment.  “Mommy, Mrs. Smith has a gun in her bottom drawer, she says it is just in the event that bad guys come, we’re safe”  No.  This is safe?  How the hell does a 6 year old feel safe in a class like this. How the hell does a parent feel safe sending their child to a class where her teacher is armed!   I don’t think so.  Not too mention, both Holmes and Lanza came equipped full of combat apparel and vests.  Which, is another question in itself.  How does 20 some year old kids get there hands on this kind of gear.  What the hell do they need it for?  Obviously they’re not going to Iraq.  You can be armed all you want.  There are still going to be lives that will be lost.  Teachers being armed, is a disgusting thought, and surely not the answer.  I just couldn’t imagine being a parent, sending my child to class, where there is a glock at arms reach in a drawer.  Fuck me.  Talk about feeling safe.   Actually, you know. Yes, Lets talk about feeling safe.  I already mentioned the different locations recent shootings have occurred.  I think in America, safety may becoming nothing more than a simple illusion.  It doesn’t seem to exist anywhere.  I can remember after the Aurora shooting, I thought how bizarre it was too shoot up a theatre, and then wondering what is it going to take for America going to step up there gun control laws. Not imagining it was even possible, I thought,  Is it going to take a mass shooting at children’s school.  Well..  Fuck.  Now what America.  There it is.  And, again, confirming my thoughts that safety has become nothing but an illusion.  If we can’t drop our 6 year old son/daughter off at grade school.  Where the hell can we drop them off.  Sickening.

But, as I said while, I think gun control is a major player in this issue, I don’t believe it is the only issue.  I think mental health is another. particularly education of, and the rehabilitation of.  Clearly, in order to shoot anyone, I think you need to be completely mentally, and psychologically out of touch.  Let alone to pull off a mass shooting.  I can’t even fathom that.  These individuals are all the same.  They are incredibly brilliant, and incredibly deranged.  After each shooting you read the reports of the suspect, and comments from people who knew them, and you generally hear the exact same thing.  “He was a quiet kid, typically a loner, kept to himself” “He was incredibly bright, but quiet, didn’t fit in with others, bit of an outcast” “There was always something a little bit different, he kept to himself, seemed a bit strange”  Ok.  So we have some common themes here.  Quiet. Smart. Outcast. Different.  Is that now to say that anyone who has these 4 traits is a potential mass killer.  No.  but we all hear the same things.  These kids are similar.  I don’t have any idea what it is that pushes them over that edge and makes them so deranged that they are able to construct a plan and commit to a mass killing.  I have no idea.  I have no answer for that.  I can’t even imagine it.  So, I am not going to pretend like I have an answer on how to spot these kids out of the crowd, or how to deal with them.  Because I have no fucking idea.  Personally, I have mental health issues too. Hell, 25% of us do.  Does that mean 25% of us are capable of pulling off such a horrific event.  Absolutely not.  But, a select few obviously are.  I don’t know any of these kids. I never did.  I don’t know any kids, or people either that I could suspect of doing something like this.  I don’t have any idea what it looks like.   I have no idea.  And, I most certainly am not trying to justify the actions of these people, and writing it off as another kid who was completely insane.  No.  I do believe that these people have all consciously made the decision to do what they have done.  Whatever conscious is for them.   And, absolutely nothing about it, is right.   I don’t think that Holmes, Klebold, Harris, Lanza and the rest of them, decided on the eve of, they were going to wake up and devastate a nation, the world with another tragic, mass shooting.  These are years in the making, at least I would imagine.  My question is, how did no one seen any of it? There had to have been signs.  Is it because we are just completely uneducated, that we don’t know what it looks like, or we don’t know what to do.  If we are better educated about the severity of mental illnesses, maybe these kids receive proper treatment, or are put into some sort of “home” if you will to seek help, and make them… better, I guess.  Or at least bring him closer to reality?  Possibly preventing them from ever being that far gone.   I don’t know.  But, I think as a whole, we need to put more focus on the education of mental health.  It is not a shame to suffer from it, maybe someone did see some signs coming from these crazed individuals years ago, but they didn’t want to say anything because it was their brother, sister, cousin, friend, son or even daughter, and they were embarrassed.  Now, neither am I saying that these events could have maybe then been preventable, because I have no idea.  I can’t speak to that effect.  If I had the answer, trust me, I would do all that I could to ensure that these events never happened, or never would happen again.  But, unfortunately, I do not know, and with the way this world is, I am not that confident either.  But, in going back.  I just think that we can all do a better job within the realms of mental illness.  Be more educated. As I have said in the past, be more educated, and aware.  Then maybe, when we come across a 12 year old boy who has demonstrated signs of a potential mental illness, we can act appropriately, and deal with him/her, instead of turning the other way, and allowing him to fall deeper and deeper into a mental burden to the point, of, who knows.

And finally, I think the third thing that is a contributing factor, is the media.  I was thoroughly disgusted in how the media dealt with this event.  Interviewing the children was first and foremost on the my disgust list.  A grown 40-some year old man working for ABC, is in the home of a 7 year old girl who was there that day, and survived.  And he is asking her to replay the events that just occurred hours ago so we at home can have a better visual of what happened?  This made me absolutely fucking sick.  I don’t care if the parents agreed to it.  These parents are in as much complete shock as anyone else.  I can’t imagine they were in the proper frame of mind to make this decision.  Which, I am sure the media knew.  These people are completely vulnerable.  These families didn’t need Chris Cuomo in there home interviewing there daughter.  They need the comfort and support of families, and friends.  Not fucking CNN cameras and their reporter.  I really think that CNN, CBS, ABC and the rest of the media vultures, truly ought to be ashamed of themselves, and know, you are part of the problem.  Not the solution.

In closing.  This has been a extremely difficult piece to write, if I offended anyone, I certainly did not mean too.  Unless you are one of those NRA morons.  But,  As I said, this tragedy resonated with me more than any of the previous did.  And, thats not to say that the other’s didn’t either.  They did.  All of them. They’re all senseless, tragic and devastating.  I am not blaming gun control for this latest shooting, I am not blaming mental illness on this either, nor am I blaming the media.  I think that all of this plus more is contributing to the problem, but I certainly do not think one of these three things is the answer to a solution any more or less than the other.  It is complicated.  But, it is our job to figure out how we can make this stop. And make this stop instantly.  Safety should be real.  It should not be an illusion as it is becoming.

– I’ll leave you with a quote from Morgan Freeman that further discusses the impact the media has on these shootings.  Whether this was actually from Freeman or not, has yet to be confirmed. But whoever it was.  They’re right.

“You want to know why. This may sound cynical, but here’s why.

It’s because of the way the media reports it. Flip on the news and watch how we treat the Batman theater shooter and the Oregon mall shooter like celebrities. Dylan Klebold and Eric Harris are household names, but do you kn
ow the name of a single victim of Columbine? Distur

bed people who would otherwise just off themselves in their basements see the news and want to top it by doing something worse, and going out in a memorable way. Why a grade school? Why children? Because he’ll be remembered as a horrible monster, instead of a sad nobody.

CNN’s article says that if the body count “holds up”, this will rank as the second deadliest shooting behind Virginia Tech, as if statistics somehow make one shooting worse than another. Then they post a video interview of third-graders for all the details of what they saw and heard while the shootings were happening. Fox News has plastered the killer’s face on all their reports for hours. Any articles or news stories yet that focus on the victims and ignore the killer’s identity? None that I’ve seen yet. Because they don’t sell. So congratulations, sensationalist media, you’ve just lit the fire for someone to top this and knock off a day care center or a maternity ward next.

You can help by forgetting you ever read this man’s name, and remembering the name of at least one victim. You can help by donating to mental health research instead of pointing to gun control as the problem.”

I am praying for you Newtown.  

Rest in Peace & God Bless

Charlotte Bacon

Daniel Barden

Olivia Engel

Josephine Gay

Ana Marquez-Greene

Dylan Hockley

Madeleine Hsu

Catherine Hubbard

Chase Kowalski

Jesse Lewis

James Mattioli

Grace McDonnell

Emilie Parker

Jack Pinto

Noah Pozner

Caroline Previdi

Jessica Rekos

Avielle Richman

Benjamin Wheeler

Allison N Wyatt

Rachel Davino

Dawn Hochsprung

Anne Marie Murphy

Lauren Rousseau

Mary Sherlach

Victoria Soto

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Hey everyone!  Long time no talk! Writing double headers here. I think that is the first time that I have done that.  Last night I wanted to write about a few different, random things.  Just kind of do an update.  But, as soon as I started writing, and talking about the holidays, I thought I’d continue on in discussing why they can, and are so difficult for me.  And, in turn, I wrote nothing about what I had planned.  So, I will try and do that tonight. First off though, thank you too everyone who read last nights entry, and too everyone who shared it, retweeted it, favorite’d it, or mentioned something to me. I sincerely appreciate the support.  As always.

Before I get going into this entry, I wanted to throw my two cents on the NHL Lockout.  I don’t even know how I feel about it anymore.  I don’t even really care.  I am so frustrated by both the owners, and the NHLPA.  I am not on either side. Not the owners, nor the NHLPA side.  I started off being on the NHLPA side by default.  Then, I’ve slowly just moved to the middle, and cared less and less.  I have tried my best not to watch the daily video updates on TSN, read into all the articles and tweets about the lockout.  Or, even invest in much of the pessimism or, optimism.  Except, for when I had heard that Crosby was the sheer reason there was any optimism, and that day last week where everything looked good.  I ran my mouth off to few people on twitter about how Crosby is the modern day God.  But, other than that.  I just have nothing left with the NHL.  When it comes back, I will be the first one watching.  But, I am not letting myself get too frustrated by how things are progressing now.  The entire process annoys me.  The players, the owners, and the fans…. I hate the fans that tweet, or say – I work from 6am-6pm in -41 weather in my boots just to make an average living – Sure, I feel bad for you. Regardless. But that’s likely your choice.  If you were better at hockey, like these guys are…  You wouldn’t be working 12 hours in -41.  You’d be right in the middle of the lockout.  Like, I said.  The entire process to me is frustrating. I just have a hard time giving a shit anymore.  It’s like being in love with this girl, and she just keeps fucking around with you.  Because she knows that when she needs you… You will be sitting there, just waiting for her to come back!

Fortunately, I am at the arena enough as it is that I get enough of hockey with our team, and watching our guys play, because they just love the game and they want to be at the next level.  They don’t get paid. So they just play.  As with anything, throw in a dollar or two, and everything gets all fucked up, and you get guys who begin to play for the wrong reasons.  The only thing that I am really going to miss this season… Is watching the Oilers, I am really excited for the group they have, and as well watching Crosby. I hear he is better than ever. Can’t wait for that.  But, if I have to wait another couple weeks, or till next October.  Fuck em.

Feels better to get that off my chest! In the meantime I will invest all of my hockey related passion into the Bisons & the South Carolina Stingrays!  – I suggest you do the same!

After fighting with dosages, and different anti-depressant drugs and still experiencing the same problems. Ie. Depression (duh) But, not being able to get out of bed, just having no energy, a complete lack of focus and just kind living every day ho-hum and floating through each day.  I finally went to my doctor and told him this just wasn’t working anymore.  He put me back on a prescription drug that I was on a few years back in my third year university (I think), which was probably my best year, academically and health-wise.  I worked hard at school, worked hard out of school, got back into pretty decent shape – considering where I was coming from!  Anyways.  He put me back on this prescription – which, from everything I read, and hear, can be quite the controversial drug. But, what does that even mean.  Because, Can’t any drug become controversial if you are abusing it?  Fortunately… I am not doing that, not with the near $400 price tag that came with this prescription.  The strange thing about this – It isn’t labeled as an anti-depressant.  It’s a psycho-stimulant drug to treat ADHD & Narcolepsy.   I have no idea what the latter means.  But, I am 23 year old male so chances are I have some variation of ADHD. But, It’s been amazing the differences.  I have felt sharper, I am sleeping much better, and not just sleeping better, but I can actually wake up without going through an internal struggle.  I have much more energy, and just seem to be able to go. I feel like I can function.  I have tried so many different anti-depressants, and different dosages, and none of them have this kind of result.  Then, I get off the path of anti-depressants, and everything I hoped would happen, is now happening.  Just feeling better. Mentally, and having that energy I used too have.  I’ve been on it for five days, and feel like in those 5 days I have already accomplished more than I probably did in the entire month before.  I am back in the gym working out (every day for the last 5 days) and have committed myself to losing 20 pounds in 6 weeks.  And, for me, the biggest problem is just getting the energy to get up and go to the gym.  I know I need to be there. But, that doesn’t mean much when you can’t even peel yourself out of bed half of the time.  So, on that note.  I expect all of you to help keep me accountable in my attempts to slowly get back into shape.  As well, if anyone wants to join me in working out, feel free.  Having someone to go with helps so much, having that extra push.  ALSO! If anyone wants to construct this guy a sustainable workout plan – free of charge – I am also open to that idea.  I have a few things of my own I do, but I lack in the variety department.

But, whether it is this magic “NXT-Limitless” drug, or if more of it is just in my own head. I am feeling much better lately. I am actually  doing okay.  Which, is perfect timing because as I wrote about last night.  This is an extremely difficult time of the year for me.

And, I don’t think you know how long I have been waiting to be able to truly say that.  “I am doing okay”  – And, for the first time in a long time.  At least a year, I really think that I am.  I am not going to say that I no longer struggle with my depression, because that is not true, there are moments and times.  But, now, I feel like they are much more stable.  I am in control, whereas, before, I never was. I didn’t know what was going to happen next.  I have accepted that I suffer from depression, and that, that just may be part of who I am, but I need to learn how continually manage it in a way that is going to be healthy, and beneficial for me and those surrounding.  I think I am getting there.

… In closing tonight, I wanted to send my sympathies, and condolences to the friends and families of those effected by the terrible, tragic incident that happened in Kansas City last week with Javon Belcher and his girlfriend.  An absolutely devastating tragedy.

On that note, I want to also leave you with the Brady Quinn post conference.  I thought Brady brought up a lot of great points about the world we live in today, and how we are often just so wrapped up, and pre-occupied that we can’t even give notice to those who might need it.

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2WXvp0L1DlA

 

 

– Goodnight

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Hello again!

First off, I wanted to start tonight’s blog by thanking everyone again that read my last few entries, and especially the people that have reached out to me about the blog.  You’re kindness, and overpouring support is graciously appreciated.  Thank you all. I really just hope you continue to read!

It’s nice to know, that not only am I doing this blog to medicate myself,  I am reaching out to others as well.  I really hope that this blog helps you, and I really hope that it helps you in coming forward about your struggles too.  Hell, feel free to fire me a message, text or whatever other million possible ways there are to contact a person these days and we can just chat about it.

My goal, by the time I leave this world, is too see mental illness in the same conversation as any other illness.  A normal, non judged conversation.  Because, whether you agree with me or not.  It is a illness.  Its an illness in the  brain.  If you don’t agree with this, well, I am sorry, but you’re flat out wrong.  Depression is often times a result of chemical imbalances in the brain, generally monoamine levels;  Whether that’s serotonin, norepinephrine, or dopamine.  You choose. It took me 8 minutes just to spell those words.  Norepinephrine was the easiest one.  NORE-PINE-PHRINE.  nore pine phrine.  Perfect! Easssssy!

Haha. Anywho, yes. So, we have learned that there is actually a scientific explanation for depression, and without me explaining any further, just google it. Please, cause I should still be in science 7.  Now of course, there are all kinds of contributors for this imbalance in the brain.  Just like, there are all kinds of causes, or things that can give you other illnesses… Unprotected sex, smoking, drinking, drugs…etc, and genetics of course, as almost always.   So, if we can talk about the diseases and illnesses that are a result of the formers, why the hell can’t we talk about an illness that is a result of a loss loved one, a major change in lifestyle; perhaps a job, divorce, new child, PTSD from an accident, or a traumatic event.  Why the hell is this so different! I don’t get it! I truly don’t.  If someone can get back to me with a legitimate reason as to why mental illness is so much different than all the rest, other than its chemical explanations. I’d love to hear it… Then, I’d love to sucker you right where your shitty argument came from.  I am sorry, if I am being offensive, or insensitive.  I sympathize for anyone that has gone through any treatment, of any disease.  Wait, that’s another commonality.  You have pneumonia, aids, cancer…etc.  You get treatment.  Hey!  You can too with depression.  So we have described various commonalities between mental illness, and the rest, yet, we still can’t talk about it.  I am extremely sympathetic to those with other illness, I am.  My girlfriend had her own battle with leukemia, and thankfully, was the winnnnnnnner! and many members of her family have had the same struggle, so  It’s not like I am in depressions corner with its jersey on cheering for it.  No. Fuck no. But, I get frustrated because it is so hush-hush, and it just should not be.  No one is going to call you, leave flowers at your door, because you’re depressed.  It’s not going to happen.  Or at least, it hasn’t happened to me yet…….  Hold on…. Let me go check the door for some baking.

Mmmmm…. Nope.

Its really too bad, it is, because I know that if we all worked together to talk about this the way we talk about so and so when they get, whatever it is they get.  I think that we would be taking significant step towards in mental health treatment.  Part of the problem, is everyone for embarrassed to tell someone, they’re embarrassed to get help, they can’t tell their spouse, gf/bf so their relationship struggles, they can’t tell their kids, so then little Johnny wonders why daddy is in bed sleeping all day when its plus 30 and all his other friends are playing catch with their fathers in the sun.  Their embarrassed to tell their employees in fear they will lose their job, or be judged.  Their afraid to tell their best friends cause they think they wont get it, or they’ll be soft, or whatever shitty chirp you’ll get, so their friendships suffer.  I could go on and on.

And you know what.  I am sick of it.

I’ve told my girlfriend I struggle with depression.

I’ve told my family.

Pretty sure all my friends know if they didn’t already know before this blog.

I even told my co-workers I fight it everyday, including my bosses.

…Guess what.  They all get it. They’ve been fine. They’ve treated me just fine. Just as it was.

Why did it take me 23 years to get to this point. To be able to freely talk about….

It would be so much easier if we could just all understand this monster, and we could all just talk about, help each other understand it, whether we have depression or not.  Not everyone is affected by this. I have never had cancer, so I can’t understand the pain and experience that Amanda went through, nor will I ever try.  But, I do understand what “cancer” is, and I will listen, comprehend and be there for her as best I possibly can.  Likewise, I don’t expect her to completely understand what I am going through, because she maybe hasn’t experienced it. But, I certainly expect her to treat me the same as she did, regardless of how I feel.  And, I want her and everyone to just be knowledgeable about mental health, help yourself understand.

And, thats what everyone else in this world needs to do.  Because, truth be told.  We live in a real shitty world right now. We do. And, it isn’t right. There are so many people, so many resources that there is no excuse for this. There just isn’t.  The solution is simple, we need to talk, we need to be knowledgeable, we need to help each other understand.  How we do this. Its up to us.

So please. Start now. Start tonight.

If you read this, and you struggle with mental illness.  I want you to tell 1 person that you are in this war.  1 person. I don’t care who it is.  Hell, tell me even! I don’t care. Tell your sibling, parent, friend, co worker, or a complete fucking stranger. Tell someone.  and, I tell ya what.  I can almost guarantee you that they will be fine with it. There will be no jumbo shock reaction. LYKE OMG U WHAT! No. If they are grown up, civilized individual and in this society with the rest of us.  They’ll be fine.  And, let me tell you. You will feel so much better.

Since I started this blog… 3 days ago? I have had 2 good days… In a row. Thats been rare lately.  And, I’ve had no real reason to have these good days. I was up early for work, and home late. Both days. Usually good days are accompanied by friends, family or something. But, nope. Home alone, just me and work.  But, its simply because I am telling people.  200 people have read this blog.  200 people know I struggle with depression. And, thats what I want. The more, the better.

So, Please.  Lets talk.  Now.

This is how we are going to make this place better.

-Thank you all again so much for the support. It truly means the world to me!

Have a great long weekend, and I will likely chat with you again on Tuesday!

Be safe. And, remember.  Tell someone. 1 person. Please.

-Blair

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