325430_10150345835505194_1089580728_o.jpg

Hey Y’all!

My name’s Joe and I'm a Mental Health Journalist based in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Through my struggles with anxiety, depression, trauma and addiction, I wish to show others, that everyone is capable of improving their circumstances.

I'm sharing my story, as an experiment, to see if it is possible live a life of health, wellness, and happiness.

There is Always Hope. Never Forget that.

Rock Bottom - If you've been here I feel for ya

In 2012, I nearly lost everything. I was running a Real Estate business where I made zero sales in over a year. I lost my apartment, I lost my girlfriend (my current wife), I had moved home to my parents house, I lost my business and I was on a foldout couch, sleeping next to bankruptcy. Panic attacks, and severe depression were my daily routine, and I began contemplating suicide seriously for the second time in my life. I wept so much then.

I wept often, whenever I was heartbroken in life. I had been heartbroken by relationships, but also by failed career choices.

I had always envisioned such grand dreams for myself, and time after time, whenever I tried to make something I was left feeling devastated.

Perhaps everyone was right. It was time to go back to the hard labour, the pizza delivery jobs, and the toilet cleaning, the work I had sadly grown up accustomed to. Not that there wasn't dignity in these forms of work. It was just that I was led to believe that there was nothing more. Not for me anyways.

...and so I wept.

Change Happens

Fortunately for me, things have changed for the better. I weep still, but maybe as much from joy, as I do from pain. There will always be ups and down in life…but at least I am learning to experience and recognize the ups as well as the downs.. and life does get better.

But boy, don't kid yourself, it takes hella work.

"Within Every Adversity are Equal or Greater Benefits"

During that time when I moved back in with my parents it was very rocky but it ended up being a big blessing. In fact, that whole era turned out to be a big turning point in my life, and it may well end up being my most defining period. I suppose that remains to be seen.

One of the greatest blessings is that I became very close with my parents. For all the erratic behaviour in their marriage, my parents had morphed into a surprisingly steady presence of strength in my life. I guess what else choice did they have? I was in rough shape (nothing new to them) and things were bad.

For all the criticism I have of my mother’s parenting skills, she is not without her admirable qualities, and I love her for them. In times of darkness, she is a surprisingly, sweet, uplifting and comforting soul. I guess this is because in deeply dire times, she has no choice but to be real and strong as a mother, and then her true nature is brought out, equating to high-level maternal skills. What a great surprise.

My father brought a different set of skills to help me through that time. He brought steadiness and reliability. And now I can appreciate that.

Although, he was often uncommunicative and unemotional, he was always there no matter what. This is why he has become one of my best friends and a reason I love my wife, because she shares that same quality. That steadiness and foundation has certainly contributed to my turn around.

Tumbleweeds

As a child, I remember my home being like a ghost town - doors closed as if the apocalypse was imminent, or my dad and siblings popping in for meals from they're busy work and school schedules, but never habitating for very long. Why would they? The place was barren...desolate...a wasteland.

There were many times I felt helpless watching my mom through a cracked door, weeping endlessly for days in the fetal position - blinds drawn in a blackened room - sprinkled with bouts of intense rage. The only thing I could do during those times were to give her handwritten notes and letters of love and inspiration through that same cracked door and hope that she got them.

What inspired this post, was my cleaning out my desk and stumbling upon some quotes and an inspirational piece of writing from a magazine my mother had given to me, when I had moved home. I recall taping them near my bathroom door so I would see them as I walked by. It meant a lot to me that my mom was that thoughtful, trying anything to help me get up the next day and move forward with life.

Just maybe, she was returning the favour.

"The end of all wisdom is love, love, love."  Ramana Maharshi

quotemag quote

 

 

Goal: Healing the Minds of Others

Releasing Past Sorrow and Grief from Mindfulness