Thursday, January 18, 2018


I completed an open letter on hope to those who may need a little inspiration to carry on.  I have decided that I will add letters to this format including confidence and other topics of encouragement.  My desire is to have a completed book by the end of my topic explanations and that I will have discovered an audience for these topics, which may lead to speaking engagements, but at this time I am not sure how that will happen.  I want to motivate others to continue their journey in life with happiness at the center of their core.

No matter how difficult life becomes, Never Give-up.  My desire when you read this is you will feel hope and that my life can serve as an inspiration to you.  Reading can be very difficult if you are blue, so I will try not to make this too long.  As a two year old to twelve, I grew up in an orphanage.  I have seen many institutions for too many years.

If you are my children reading this, I want you to know how much I love you.  This is as much a letter to you as to all the young people in the family.  I am also addressing this for those who are not related to me, but who need a voice to help in challenging mental illness. Mental illness can be frustrating, but you can do so much despite the illness.  Society can make you feel like you are a burden on the tax system, but whatever gifts you have been given whether it be singing, drawing, sewing, writing or if you forget your gifts for a time; just do the best you can.

Life is full of hills (sometimes mountains) and valleys, but once you learn how to navigate these situations, life becomes easier.  For some of us including myself, I did not learn how to handle things the best, but I eventually learned how to fight back even in the depths of despair.

Having hope can sometimes seem impossible when life itself seems insurmountable.  Hope can seem intangible at times, but when life has given you a burden one has to figure out the way to manage that burden so it does not kill the very life you have been given.

As I mentioned earlier, I was raised in an orphanage as both of my parents had mental illness.  I have spent time in many mental institutions and a couple of group homes, but now I live in an apartment.  I was married for over twenty years and have two beautiful children that I am proud of.  They have faced their own challenges, but I have learned that they are living their own lives.  Their choices are their responsibilities.

No one wants an illness let alone one that may not be visible to the naked eye.  We with mental illness are in the midst of society.  Unfortunately, the media tends to focus on those with mental illness who do wrong things.

There are many people like you and me who may not have done anything wrong, but we are hospitalized because the challenges in life may seem too much.  It is to you that I am speaking, never ever allow the illness whatever illness you have, do not let it define who you are.  Even if you have had trouble with the law, use the experience as a learning curve.

You are that unique raindrop in society.  I love Dr. Norman Vincent Peale's writings and Reverend Robert H. Schuller.  The Power of Positive Thinking, by Dr. Peale is an excellent resource as is Rev. Schuller's, Tough Times Never Last, but Tough People Do.  If you are not religious that is perfectly fine.  You are you, as I said before:  a being with a unique purpose.  I will limit the religious angle to one paragraph, but I hope you will read this one paragraph.  I also read the book, A Purpose Driven Life, by Reverend Rick Warren.  The one thing I understood very well is that each of us has purpose, but we need to define that purpose.  Discover who you are and what you want to become.  For me that is becoming a whole person again being comfortable in my own skin with my short-comings.  Writing is my natural gift and I don't have to give it up just because I am not currently doing it professionally.

Each of us has to grow-up and for some of us that is hard, especially if you have been institutionalized too much.  The system can become a crutch.  Discovering who you are takes time and sometimes lots of therapy, but I believe as long as you are trying, then success will come your way.  I went to school for English, language and literature although this was not necessarily my best subject, but it was one I loved.  I practice every day, and I enjoy being critiqued even if it is negative because I can learn from the experience.

I was not always so hopeful.  I am fifty-four years old and it has taken me a long time to be my own person.  I am still working at each day.  I volunteer at The Disability Network in Flint, Michigan and I am using the experience to better my office skills and to give back to society.

Hope can seem elusive at times, but every second that passes is a new opportunity for success.  I accidentally made a mistake with my checking account.  In the past making that mistake would probably have put me in turmoil.  This time; however, I spoke with the office and since I had never made the mistake before on my rent.  They worked with me to rectify the situation.  As I get older, I realize my memory is not what it used to be, but I can take notes--and I do.

Hope is something every individual in society needs in order to survive very difficult situations whether you have mental illness or some other medical condition or you are just trying to live your life.

How do you have hope in the midst of despair?  Doing daily tasks like making the bed or doing the dishes or some other routine can help you facing the doldrums because you have accomplished something.  Staying in bed can seem like the best solution at times, but it is not.  The longer you stay in bed the more difficult getting up can be.

We have to have self talk, that voice inside us that says, "move forward things are going to be okay."  I am discovering hope in the midst of a cold winter's blast, but I am making myself do things, which take me outdoors like going to the grocery store.  it would be easy to stay inside and hop back in bed.  Naturally, if it was not necessary to go outside and the weather was too inclement, I would want you to use your best judgment.

Having hope is something that got me through difficult stays at the mental hospital and being stubborn wasn't all bad.  When I was at the group homes paying rent that was outrageous, I was given hope when it was suggested maybe I could move to my own apartment.

When I moved, I wasn't exactly sure how everything would work-out.  I bought a sleeping bag to sleep on the floor and a bag of groceries to get through the week.  My family and in-laws helped me with furniture and a bed a couple of weeks later.

Today I have a boyfriend, and I have been renting for four years, and I have a car.  Think about what your hope could be and how you are going to achieve that goal.  I believe if you put your mind to it, no matter how difficult the situation, you can achieve your goal, but first you must believe in yourself and that can be one of the hardest things.  If you are reading this, know that I believe you are making that first step to help yourself because otherwise you would have stopped reading a long time ago.  Envisioning your accomplishment can be so challenging, but you can do it.  Come on dream with me and I will dream with you.  I believe you are a whole person who just needs a little mending.  Don't be afraid to reach out for help, I did.  Success is in believing and you too can have that success.  Have hope it is the greatest gift to yourself.

Thursday, November 2, 2017

The Disability Network

     I have been volunteering at The Disability Network (TDN).  I am pleased to have contributed my poem on Muhammad Ali.  I am calling the poem, The Contender, because no matter how difficult life became for Muhammad Ali, he never gave up.  I am hoping my poem will inspire others.  I am planning to share more writings with TDN  as time goes on.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Writing for Peace

I have decided that I don't have to be published to enjoy the process of writing.  I have been utilizing my local library to check out books on playwriting.  I have never written a play before and this is a challenge.  I am trying to write a play about Cultural Crossings that will explore prejudices and customs.  My hope is that I can inspire people to explore there own prejudices through this play.  I have been a member of The Southern Poverty Law Center for many years; a watch group for hate crimes.

Everyone has prejudices, but learning to recognize them for what they are can be difficult.  My hope is that through the writing of this play that I may better present these prejudices in tangible terms and try to foster a sense of hope that will lead to peace.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Celebrating Life

I know I should be grateful for my life.  Every day I am well is another success story.  I have a significant other and things are moving positively.  My children are adults now and are enjoying success in their own right.  It is time for me to move forward in my writing and try to continue to experiment with different forms of writing like working on my play and novel.  When I get tired of the one kind of writing I switch to the other. Then there are the days I don't feel inspired to do either one and that is okay.  Today I decided to work on my blog.

I hope I am able to inspire other budding writers to always plug away even when you are not sure you know what you want to write that day.  Half the battle is just picking up the pen or working on the computer.  I live in an apartment so I see many people every day and realize how fortunate I am. Some of the people at my apartments are physically disabled or are lonely.  Some are lost in their own world where just getting dressed can be a challenge.  I have to slow down now as my life is no longer a 9 to 5 and many of my days are taken up with visiting medical personnel for both myself and my significant other.  I have to remember it is okay to have a nap once in awhile.  I would say I am generally happy these days. Since it is nearly autumn, I am grateful for the days of sunshine and warmth.  I have to remind myself that there are others less fortunate than I am and that compared to six years ago, I have come a long way.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Faltered Memory

One of the side effects of my bipolar illness that I have experienced is a faulty memory. It is difficult for me to remember things when once I had a photographic memory.  I am fifty-four now, and I am enjoying volunteering because The Disability Network is challenging me to learn new things.  I am grateful that I am able to learn and I am now starting to remember how to use office equipment.  I enjoy the atmosphere of being in an environment that is understanding of my illness.  I have not shared with all the staff that I have an illness, but when I interviewed with the staff to become a volunteer, I was upfront about my illness and my anxiety.

It has been two years since I have been hospitalized, and I am now gathering my strength to try and learn the skills necessary to return to work.  I urge anyone with this illness to never give up. Surround yourself with individuals who are positive and don't isolate!  It is easy to isolate out of embarrassment, but if you are like me, we struggle when an episode occurs and isolation is something we do to ourselves.  We have to reach out to improve our lives and learn how to move forward.  I hope my life can be inspiration to you to always try to stand back up.  Together we can support one another to never let life get the best of us! 

Thursday, August 24, 2017


I read Exploring Theater Playwriting, by Rita Lorraine Hubbard, and even though it was written for youth, as a first time playwriter, I found the book as an excellent resource for myself and it was published in 2017.  The concepts are easy to follow and it is a quick read.  I will keep you updated on how my theater writing progresses.

Thursday, August 17, 2017


I have ordered two books on line regarding playwriting through interlibrary loans.  I am looking forward to expanding my writing experience using some old and new material. There is no deadline because I am writing this for myself with the hopes that when it is completed that perhaps a small theater group will enjoy performing my work about Mary Magdalen and Christ.  This writing is fun.