Suicide Summit

I was blessed to be able to attend a free five credit continuing education summit on suicide treatment and intervention. I wanted to attend both days but staffing did not allow me to complete the other 6 credits.

I enjoyed listening to Victor Armstrong, MSW. I have heard him speak at my Homecoming programming last year, but at the summit he was given more time to really speak out mental health in minority communities and really speak about his experience about being a black male in society today.

I won’t dishonor his story by trying to repeat it from memory today. But, I will say that if you have a chance to hear him speak or follow him on Twitter for his cultural awareness and depth of knowledge I recommend it.

The keynote speaker of the day was Kevin Hines who has battled mental health and survived a suicide attempt. Please watch his YouTube videos or read his website to learn about his story. You will learn so much about the gaps in mental health.

Much love and light readers

New Endocrinologist

So I finally saw my new endocrinologist. She isn’t my favorite but she is fit and knowledgable. Much better than my last provider who told me to eat healthy and take walks so I would not be fat.

It has been a bit hectic, and all my medications are being adjusted but I am trying to take it slow so I don’t overwhelm my mind and body. I am happy to say my thyroid is finally being taken care of after no medication adjustments since 7/28/17

Love and light readers!

The Novice Path Orilium Reading List

Novice Path Entrance– Read a Book with a Map- Raven’s Shadow by Patricia Briggs

Patricia Briggs is my favor werewolf romance write, and Raven’s Shadow has been on my TBR for a while. I figured now was a great time to bust it out.

Ashthorn Tree– Read a book that is tempting to you- Six of Crows by Leigh Bsrbugo 

Leila recommended this book for over a year. I finally took the advice and had the book delivered. I will be reading it this month!

The Mist of SolitudeRead a standalone- To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

This is another one of those books that I have tried to pick up a few times, but life has gotten too busy. I really hope to finish this book!

Ruin of the Skye– Read a book featuring ghosts/haunted house/ other supernatural elements- Goosebumps Ghost Beach by R.L. Stine 

This book is one of the dozen Goosebumps books I let my fiance keep out, the rest of the books went into storage until the first set is read through. I do not know anything about the book besides the title, and that it is part of the Goosebumps collection.

Obsidian Falls– Read a thriller or Mystery book- To Right The Wrongs by Sheryl Scarborough

This is one of my most anticipated reads for the months, To Catch a Killer really pulled me in so I have high hopes for To Right the Wrongs. Plus the cliffhanger of the main characters paternaty made me want to dive right in!

Tower of Rumination– Read a five star prediction-  The Brat by Lynsay Sands 

I have had this book on my shelf for over two years. I love how Lynsay Sands has written the Highlander romance books so I have five star hopes for this read.

Orilium Academy– Read a book with a school setting- Vampire Knight VOL 3 by Matsuri Hino 

I am reading the next book in the Vampire Knight Manga. I re-read volume 1 for a readathon and volume 2 was also read for a readathon. I was holding onto volume 3 for a “special occasion” since volume 4 is on back order, but it is a great Academy/ School based manga, perfect for a prompt like this one!

The Next step in breaking down an article- Deep reading

When reading I like to have some basic supplies on hand, they are not required but I find them helpful. 

  1. Pen(s) and or Pencils- I use the Pilot Precise V5, in red, blue, green, black, light blue, red, pink, and purple. However, you can use anything that works for you 
  2. Highlights- I use thin tip highlighters in multiple colors. The text on articles tends to be tightly packed so the thin highlighter work best for precise highlighting 
  3. Sticky note/ post it notes- I grab whatever is available, the size you need depends on how much you need to flag
  4. The most important part is to know your learning style- for me I need to listen to music in head phones to drown out any other distractions so I can truly concentrate- your needs will likely be different 

After you have your supplies you are ready to start diving in! 

Things to flag include the following: 

  1. Key words specifically for the text- even if you know them you want to look up definitions because they may be used in a different context in research 
  2. Words that are unfamiliar to you. You will want to mark them and look up the definition. 
    1. Tip- I find using context clues to define words harder in academic literature than in daily reading. I typically keep a blank search bar open on my phone or computer to quickly search words 
  3. Sentences that mention other papers or sources
    1. If you are doing a literature review and need further sources, or writing a paper, looking at the primary sources will give you the most unbiased information 

September is Suicide awareness month

This year life link is sponsoring #Bethe1to to spread awareness about suicide and suicide prevention. Be the one to has six recommended action items. 

  1. Ask 
    1. Studies show that asking someone if they are suicidal/ having thoughts of suicide provides some emotional/psychological relief for the person who is suffering. Be gentle, be kind, but be direct. It used to be thought that this would make the suicidal ideation worse, but this has been debunked. 
  2. Be There 
    1. I know times are hard with the pandemic but be there for each other. It could be anything from texts, phone calls, zoom meetings, ect. People are less overwhelmed by their suicidal thoughts when they can talk to someone without judgment. 
  3. Keep Them Safe 
    1. Research shows that when lethal means of suicide are un-available or less available, suicide rates decline. This could as simple as taking away the item(s) with which the person plans to use to commit suicide. 
  4. Help them Stay Connected 
    1. This one is like be there, research shows people with more social supports can feel less hopeless and more likely to battle the underlying cause of their suicidal ideation. 
  5. Follow Up 
    1. This one is more for professionals, but you can help too. Studies show that those who receive post-acute treatment follow up are less likely to complete a suicide attempt. For those in a person’s support network you can help by asking if they have followed up with a doctor, advanced practice provider, therapist, or other professional for support. 
  6. Learn More 
    1. There are tons of resources out there to learn more about suicide and suicide prevention. 

I recommend NAMI, Lifeline, Crisis Text line, and Mental Health First Aid to name a few. If you have recommended resources leave a comment below! 

Life link campaign resources-

Mythothon Round 5 – The Odyssey- Reading List

1. Troy- Read a book set in a country not your own.- Haveli by Suzzane Fisher Staples 

I chose this book to start with because I started it after Shabanu but I have not had the time. While I am unhappy with the white washing in the story, I would like to finish what I started. 

2. Cicones- Read a book about a villain- To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

This is another read that got away from me. I have picked it up and put it down twice due to my hectic lifestyle. I will be pushing myself to finish it this month! 

3. Cyclops- Read a book you know nothing (or very little) about. – All The Wrong Questions 1. “Who Could That Be At This Hour?” by Lemony Snicket 

I loved the Series of Unfortunate events in elementary school, so I hope I will love the prequels as much! I know little about them besides they are a prequel, and nothing like the main series. I hope it is great! 

4. Island of Aeolia-Read a book that is not the first in a series- The Lost Scrolls: Earth

by Michael Teitelbaum

I have been re-watching the last air bender so this is a great time to pick up the four scroll books. 

5. Laestrygonians-Read a book with food in the title or on the cover- TBD

6. Circe-Read a book that has a protagonist with a skill- The Lost Scrolls: Waterby Michael Teitelbaum

I have been re-watching the last air bender so this is a great time to pick up the four scroll books. 

7. Teiresias and the Land of the Dead-Read a book you think you’ll learn something from- Pagan Portals Persephone by Robin Corak

Since I have been more open to my spirituality, I figured this would be a good place to learn more. 

8. Circe- Return to a book and reread it- The Lost Scrolls: Waterby Michael Teitelbaum

I have been re-watching the last air bender so this is a great time to pick up the four scroll books. 

9. Sirens- Read any book that calls to you- TBD

I felt it would be most genuine to pick the book that most calls to me when I am ready to complete the prompt. So I have left this as to be determined. 

10. Charybdis and Scylla- Pick two books. Flip a coin (or some other type of chance) to pick between them. You can Google ‘flip a coin’ to do this online- TBD 

11. Thrinakia- Read a book with an animal on the cover- Goosebumps The werewolf of Fever Swamp by R.L. Stein 

This book is another book dear fiance recommended, AKA has been requesting I read for months. It has a wolf on the front which is exciting! 

12. Calypso-Read a book that has been recommended by a friend- Howling Mad by Peter David 

I let my fiance pick this one out, after he asked :I’m a friend, right?” so 

13. Phaecia- Read a book with royalty- The Lost Scrolls: Fire by Tom Mason, Dan Danko

I have been re-watching the last air bender so this is a great time to pick up the four scroll books. 

14. Ithaca- Read a story you got for free- The Lost Scrolls: Air- by Tom Mason, Dan Danko

I have been re-watching the last air bender so this is a great time to pick up the four scroll books.

What, why, and how?

Welcome to the next installment of breaking down a research paper.

Collecting the overarching details of a study

Using the Dissociation debates: everything you know is wrong article as an example, I break down the top three most important questions about an article. This is the What, Why, and How. 

What do we want to know? 

Why do we want/need to know it? 

How are we approaching the topic? 

  1. What question is this article trying to answer?

Why is there controversy in the mental health field revolving around dissociative disorders? 

  1. Why is this question important to the field? 

Those with dissociative disorders are an underserved population in the mental health field. If we as a field are not taking care of those with mental illness who will? 

  1. What method is the paper using 

The paper is using a literature review to look at the history, models, theories, and socio-cultural factors surround dissociative disorder. In short it is a QUALITATIVE study. 

These first two sections of breaking down the research article will give you the back bone of what you may need to figure out if the source is useful, the bare bones for a paper, and the jumping off point for truly understanding the material. Next time we will go over, how to take this information one step further! 

Over working

Hello all!

We are in the middle of a COVID “surge”. Mainly it’s just that we have more patients than we have beds. There is a lot of mental health crisis out there! I am on day 7 of 12-14 days straight, so I will keep this brief.

1. Self care- take care of yourself and try to seek help before it becomes an emergency.

2. Use your PCP and or Urgent care if you can!

3. Wear your mask- vaccinated or not

4. Get vaccinated if you can and check to see if you need a booster if you are already vaccinated

5. If it’s not essential try to put it off, we don’t need more spread than we already have

Bonus: be kind to each other. You never know what others are going through.

With love,


Pokémon Go!

So I’m an exciting turn of events, the Twitter protest of hear us niantic worked! Now that Pokémon and gym spin distances have been increased it has caused a huge jump in quality of life!

Here in the US we still suffer from severe systematic racism, there were several tweets from persons of color saying they could play Pokémon go safely with the increased distance but with the decrease in distance, some were afraid to leave the house due to the long standing history of police brutality against persons of color.

It has also been a win for persons with invisible and visible disabilities. Those of us, like myself, who struggle in crowds. For those of us who have mobility issues the spin radius increase was a breath of fresh air. I was able to pick up the game and start a new profile after having abandoned the game due to social anxiety.

This is also a public health win. The Delta variant and COVID is still real. Wear a mask, get vaccinated, stay home if you feel ill, and most importantly, stay safe!

Burnt out gifted and talented kid

Hi readers I seem to have found where I belong and why I am the way I am.

The burnt out formerly gifted and talented group really speaks to me. From third grade through high school I was in “mentally gifted” programs. Where I would either stay after school, be pulled from classes for a day, or otherwise miss some of class to get “enrichment” on topics not covered in classes.

I pushed myself to get the best grades often at the expense of my mental health and frustration of my family. “Why do you try so hard they can’t give you anything better than an A?”

Then college hit me in the face like a ton of bricks. Coming from an inner city charter school that was under funded, and the ceo did not care to fix the funding issues. I begged to be moved to a better school because I had a sense of doom and knew if I didn’t better prepare myself college would be hell.

My parents didn’t understand and didn’t even try to move me. I even had teachers begging them to get me to a better school. Shout out to my high school math teachers who did their best for me!

I went into college thinking I was going to be pre-med. However, I had no social skills, no sense of self, no independence, and no idea what love looked like. The kind of love that isn’t transactional.

Within the first few months of school I found myself stalked by a campus coven, forced into my first kiss, vilified by residents life because of a rich roommate, and isolated. I was failing and on academic probation by the time I went home for Christmas break. I was depressed enough that my parents told me to pretend to be happy or they would force me to drop out of college. So here I was in December and January, working to save money for the next semester, and pretending I was wanted to be alive.

I struggled that entire first year. Between freshman and sophomore year I changed majors from pre-med track with biology, to just biology, to psychology, to sociology, to undeclared, to social work.

I found social work to be natural for me, it had some of the knowledge I wanted and I could help people at the end of the day. The few friends I had made fun of me, saying I’d be the worst social worker and to quit, but they didn’t have a better option in mind besides that college wasn’t the right place for me. Looking back they were just ad toxic as the family I left behind to go to college.

Junior and Senior year were better. I made a few real friends I still talk to, I was doing well in my major. I pulled my gpa from failing to a solid c average. It wasn’t what I hoped and I still find myself frustrated with the turn of events but I was happier.

More on gifted kid burn out in the coming weeks.