An Open Letter To My Person In Heaven

An Open Letter To My Person In Heaven

For the one we miss the most.

Dear loved one,

Plain and simple; I miss you.

It’s hard to think about how many milestones we have already been through and are going to be celebrating without you. Birthdays, holidays, college acceptance letters and graduations from High School are just a few. I still find myself picking up the phone to call you when something important or even something silly happens. You’re the first person I want to tell everything to—everything.

Whether it’s an exciting call about a job or an internship or to vent about people who hurt me, you were always the first one to know. I bet some people even felt out of the loop when they were around us because we could reach each other with ease. Most of the time, I didn’t even have to specify what I was feeling for you to understand it. We knew each other that well.

Ironically enough, the only one I want to talk to about how much my heart aches when I think about you not being around anymore is you. It’s crazy to think that I can’t just show up to your house and find you sitting in your room. Often times, you’ll hear people tell you to, “appreciate the little things, because they become the big things.” I wish I realized that when you were still here.

Despite this, I still smile cheek-to-cheek when I look at photos of you and I. The sounds of your laughter are permanently etched into my mind. I will never forget what hugging you felt like—it made me feel safe and at home. Your open arms and loving smile are truly what I miss most.

You are always going to be the first person I think of when I wake up in the morning and the last person on my mind when I go to sleep at night. You still impact so many members of our family and all of your friends.

Every lesson, story and memory is a treasure that will be safely kept in our minds and shared with the people who love and miss you most. Take care of all of our friends and family who have come to join you. We love and miss you dearly and not a day shall pass where we don’t think about you.

With love,

The one who misses you most

Cover Image Credit: Lauren Conniff

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My Personal Dilemna On Psychiatric Meds and Where I Stand

Because after ten years of taking them, my mind tends to ponder

If you have been reading my previous articles, there had been one where I touched upon mental health and self-care. In my situation, I have been on psychiatric medications since I was fourteen, and I am now twenty-four. As society grows wiser (or dumber), many new opinions have been formed about the need for psychiatric meds as a treatment in opposition to two topics I will go over as we move forward in the article:

1. No medications, AKA "cold turkey" and,

2. Cannabis.

Many believe that being "woke" means awakening to the conspiracy or fact, however, you view it, that the government is poisoning us and we don't need psychiatric medications. Many others believe that marijuana is given from Mother Earth thus it could be a great treatment for psychiatric conditions given its proven benefits for many people.

1. The Cold Turkey Dilemma

Now, this is where my dilemma comes into play. First of all, I get it. I see where people are coming from in terms of the possibility that we are just told we need medication to fix a problem. In other words, that's the basic description of American culture. However, from my experience, I have heard these theories from people who never had to take an antidepressant in their life, experience a withdrawal, or go through some serious psychiatric trauma.

In addition, most people are so quick to take a Tylenol for a headache but will refuse Prozac as a treatment. And to those who can fight their illness head-on with no medication of any kind, props to them and much respect. On the other hand, there are many like myself who tried to do it without medications and felt themselves sinking quickly in sand that wasn't even meant to sink in the first place.

Personally, I have always wondered if I had been conditioned by an industry to believe that I need my Lithium and Zoloft to function with an addition of Adderall to solve my daily struggles? And if that is the case, should I actually come off my meds, would my symptoms be triggered because my mind needs the chemicals to function? Or because my body has become so used to medication that it's actually my body withdrawing?

Honestly, at this point in my life, I am thankfully stable and I can truly thank my psychiatrist for that because had she not stabilized my meds, I would've been in a completely different place. Yeah, I can wander and all, but at this point, if a diabetic needs his insulin and does not have to truly ponder on if he's just using extra for his health, then neither should I have to worry about that as well.

2. Medical marijuana and my personal disaster

In terms of medical marijuana for mental illness, the panic attacks I have had while smoking weed have constantly been a reminder as to how awful it is for me and many others like myself. It was almost a month ago that I was at a friend's house, two hours from where I lived, and I had to sleep there because it was late at night.

What was the problem? Not having my meds handy that help me sleep at night and stabilize my mood. I now reside in California where marijuana is legal and easily obtained. My friend happened to have a strand called Indica, which is supposed to deliver a body high and not activate the mind as much. I thought to myself that if this is natural and also the sleeping strand not the hyper one that makes me feel psychotic, then one hit should help me sleep.

I shit you not, five minutes after one hit I was screaming for help while pouring water on my head to end my high immediately. It was the worst panic attack I had ever had in my life. The next day, I woke up and did not have my anti-depressants on hand that I take in the mornings. When driving back with my sister who happened to be beside me, I had freaked out while we were on the road and felt suicidal thoughts and as if I did not recognize myself. So, medical marijuana is absolutely out of the question.

I guess overall, I truly don't know where I stand right now. However, nobody else can decide whether I'm a "victim" of the "system," or truly in need of my medication and constant moderation of them. No one can decide or judge but G-d, myself, and my doctor. To anybody else going through a similar dilemma, I can not give any medical advice, but I will recommend that you shut out the outer influences and listen to your inner voice because that is what guides you forever.

Cover Image Credit: Unsplash

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Why We Should All Never Work Out Again

JK still work out just stay hydrated

Let me tell you the story of last Saturday or as I like to call it the 12 hours I thought I might be dying.

Let us start off with I’m being a bit dramatic when I say I thought I was dying. It is true that I don’t really get sick often and if I do it’s never past a cold. I’ve also never broken a bone. So when I woke up Friday night after falling asleep for an hour and I couldn’t straighten my arm (without it being really painful) I was kind of freaking out.

But let me back up a bit

Thursday night I had lifted weights for the first time in a loooong time. The next day I was a normal sore as I had anticipated. My arm didn’t start to not work until late that night. It was also only my right arm so I didn’t think the two were connected. I decided maybe I slept on it wrong and to try and go back to sleep and maybe it would feel better in the morning.

By morning I had woken up several times and tried to move it with it still hurting extremely bad.

So, that next afternoon I went to the doctor. They took blood and I waited to see how many days I had left. Then the nurse came back. She goes “You are dehydrated!” and starts hooking me up to an IV to put fluids in me. I was confused and a little embarrassed to say the least. I did a pretty good job a drinking water normally and I hadn’t had a headache at all that week which my normal sign I was dehydrated.

The doctor then comes in and explains what happened to me. I will now try to explain it to you my understanding of it.* Basically, when you work out your muscles break down and then that tissue gets flushed out with the water in your system. So, if you haven’t drunk enough water before you work out (me) then it just sits there.

Over the next 24 hours, your muscles start to react and seize up. Normal muscle breaks down levels after a work out is 100 to 150. Mine was over 12,000, which as you probably guessed, are extremely high.

So after two bags of fluids and being in the ER for five hours I was done. They told me to just keep stretching my arm, drinking lots of water, and come back in two days to have another blood test done to make sure my kidneys weren’t failing (a fun side effect if it’s not caught early enough).

So that’s my story and lesson for why everyone needs to drink tons of water especially before working out.

*If you want to look into this more of getting the actual scientific explanation you can go to this website.

Cover Image Credit: YouTube

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