No Better Time Than the Present

Today marks the last day of September.  I’m sad to see it pass.  It is probably my favorite month of the year.  The weather is enjoyable, even on those rainy days.

6 years ago

self portrait – six years ago

Tomorrow marks the first day of October.  That’s my second favorite month; so I’m welcoming it.  I feel however, I would do an injustice to myself and others if I didn’t post about part of why this blog came to be.

September is National Suicide Prevention Awareness Month.  I wanted to share my story. errr.. stories.

mandown1

Man Down

My first experience with tapping out came when I was in middle school.  I’m horrible at remembering dates and times; so, I always give myself leeway in case I’m wrong.  Middle school is a tough place to be.  Those years are some of the most awkward phases for any person to go through.

torontotrip

Middle School trip to Toronto. The place gave me allergies, but I had a great time.

Yup!  Rockin’ the barrel curls, braces, and A.D.D.I.D.A.S.  But; you get the picture, super awkward.  I had been fortunate enough with a great upbringing and was well liked by my peers.  Why on Earth, at such a young and innocent age, would I decide to take pills to end my life?  Let’s face it.  Kids can be cruel, and insecurities run high.  I had no idea what it actually meant.  For one, I didn’t even know how many you would have to take to be successful.  My ignorance on pills led me to believe that maybe five Tylenol would do the trick.  Thank God; I was wrong, and it only made me sleepy.  I didn’t realize how much life I’d be missing out on.  In almost 20 years, I’ve lived so many experiences.  Positive and negative.  Wild and out, to very introspective moments.  But this is my life; and, I wouldn’t trade it for any other.

Were there moments when I needed to call for help?  Yes.  And I did.  Two summers ago; without actually committing suicide, I died.  I died inside.  My soul felt like a stone I carried around in my chest.  I had my strong belief in God; and, I was at a time in my life where He was the only thing I had faith in.  Which kept me from exterminating myself.  Again, thank God!  It became clear to me that I needed to save myself- by checking into a behavioral health unit, located in a hospital.

sideways

Sideways

I was feeling sideways.  My bipolar disorder gobbled up years of my life.  Checking into that hospital for eight days was invaluable.  I needed a safe place to decompress.  That’s exactly what I did while indisposed.  I was attending group sessions, coloring, reading, french braiding the girls’ hair, praying with others, and comforting them with my singing.  I will always remember the girl who would request that I sing, Janis Joplin- Mercedes Benz.  Still tho, I cant help but feel guilty and embarrassed that I needed to take some time out like that.  I see many inspiring people who are going through rough times.  I’ve yet to come across a person who hasn’t gone through a struggle; or, isn’t going through a struggle.  Compassion goes a long way.  And that is a big part of prevention.  It’s easy; try it on for size!

The Bean

Happy National Coffee Day!!  I plan on celebrating all day, as if; that’s different from any other day. Ha.

goinghard

Going hard; with the hot & cold.

I try and convince myself that I get my daily water intake from the amount of coffee I drink.  I mean right, though?  You mix the grounds with the water.  Bam.  Coffee!  Water plays an important part; so dammit, it’s justified!  People crack jokes that I take my creamer with coffee.  It’s true.  I love it sweet!

coffee01

Drive by photo I took while in Columbus, Ohio- adventures with my boyfriend.

While I’m working on getting my photography to be my main source of income, I realize, I will need another job to supplement my funds.  There are many jobs I wouldn’t mind having; and, I think I could be quite happy working at a coffee shop.  Maybe not this coffee shop.  Perhaps one that is more “mom and pop”.  One that has a little more charm and personal flavor.  Going to work would be like an extension of leaving my place; which, I love my place.  I do get social anxiety; but, seem to do very well in crowds.  Deep down I believe I’m an introvert.  The comfort of my house gives me peace.  We can all do with a little more peace; and, coffee.

Birthday Weekend

It’s been about ten years since I’ve been excited about an upcoming birthday; which, is this Saturday.  September 26th.  I have nothing against birthdays and getting older; in the same respect, see me in another 10 years and my views may have changed. Ha.  Over time I stopped celebrating with a party; and, I’m not sure why.  Touch of anxiety over having an entire day devoted to your very existence?!!  Let’s not get it twisted though.  I do love a reason to get dressed up, hair on point, and make-up all done.

jesszombie

Wait; what did you think I meant by make-up done?

Okay.  This is how I’ve spent my birthdays.  For the past five years I’ve been a photographer at a charity zombie walk; in Lakewood, Ohio.  Their fall walk usually lands on the weekend of my turning “another year wiser.”  Two of my favorite things; photography and zombies.  It’s a gift I give to myself.  Imagine my displeasure when I found out that they weren’t having it this year!  Oh, no!!  I’ll have to miss out on seeing the great friends I’ve made from these gore-tastic events.  It puts a damper on the year.

The silver lining?…..

This will be the first birthday in ten years that I’ve had a boyfriend to celebrate it with!  We are in a 3 hour long distance relationship; and, our lives get busy.  We do our best to see each other when we can.  It definitely means a lot that he’ll be by my side.  🙂

I don’t get to travel back to my hometown often; and, when I do, I usually only have a day and I want to spend that day with my boyfriend.  It’s beyond difficult to try and squeeze all my visits with family and friends in such a short amount of time.  When I realized my 31st birthday was coming up, I figured it convenient to have anyone who wanted to visit with me, to show up at a bar with a jukebox!  The jukebox is pivotal!  I am ALL for live bands.  I was in a few bands.  But; on my birthday, I really want to be able to select the songs I want to hear.  It’s my party; I’ll whine if I want to.  That being said.  I called around to make sure my stipulations were met and I decided on a spot!  I took the classy route; and, shared my “event” on facebook.

bday

In a handful of hours I’ll be making the trip up north and staying overnight at my beloved cousins’ house.  My cousin, is probably my Curtis Lowe.  He plays a mean guitar and it is always a blast when we jam!  Some of my former band mates will be over at his house to celebrate with me and that is such a treat!  My cousins are so lovable and gracious for opening up their house while we stay up north for the weekend.  I’m truly looking forward to it.

singing

Yup; doing my thaang.

And, truly looking forward to my entire birthday weekend!!  I get to see my family, see my friends, and see my man.  Amazingness guaranteed!

That hardly constitutes as a lunch

Sunflower seeds, a banana, and Cheetos.  If I’m lucky enough to incorporate lunch to the daily routine; it might be along those lines.  That hardly constitutes as a meal; and, I know that.  I might as well add, that during my awake hours, I carry a mug of coffee around with me.  The past six years of being a single mom and pursuing my passions would not have happened without the reassuring help of coffee.  What a magical little bean.

I started the day, with coffee; and, with a wonderful Skype conversation involving my boyfriend.  It’s tough to be in a long distance relationship.  I’m fortunate that we are only separated by 3 hours; and, that it won’t be that way forever.  Talking to him gave me motivation to get on my grind; in regards to my photography business.  Diligently working on the details, always spinning plates.

I have a free moment.  My son is out with his grandma; so I’m taking full vantage of kicking it in gear.

So that’s why my lunch was basic.  And solely consumed so I didn’t pass out at the keyboard.

Here are some of my photos to distract you.

As I’m proofing this post; I noticed that the images are red, white, and blue.  Well that’s fitting.  Happy Labor Day, as well.

 lgredflower01These red flowers did not return this past summer; and, they’re supposed to.  Ain’t that just my way….

lgwhiteflower01

Because you can never have enough Zinnia pictures.

butterfuly001If I could put thought into action; I would print this picture for my therapist.  She loves butterflies.