Tag Archive | courage

Today

(A pretty picture I took today – April 14th, 2018 but when I publish it, it will probably say April 15th because it’s nearly 10:00pm now)

“By effort and heedfulness, discipline, and self-mastery, let the wise one make for oneself an island which no flood can overwhelm.”

Today, I got onto an elevator for work. I could have taken the stairs but chose the elevator. I was on the 4th floor of the apartment building. Going back down, I felt that the doors were taking longer than they’re supposed to to open and guess what?! I felt not one ounce of fear!! Not one little flash of fear, anxiety, panic, nothing!! And did not even feel a sense of panic coming on or anticipate it like I often do. This is incredible progress! This has to be my greatest accomplishment in this life, ever!

In case anyone reading this is confused or it seems like no big deal, here is some background info. about my experience with phobic fear:

F.E.A.R

It actually freaking happened

Welcome to rock bottom-the only way now is up

Serendipitous Strength

Phobia.

It’s a big, big thing! I suffered another terrible relapse recently and now I healed it again and can get on elevators myself with no fear! I have been working hard to heal this phobia. It doesn’t always take long to heal a relapse. Phobias are weak, even though they feel extremely powerful, and they lose their power very easily when properly faced again & again.

“Unlike many other mental health problems, phobias can be brought under manageable control or even totally destroyed, sometimes within hours. This is a far cry from some of the medium- to long-term work which is required for other mental health issues. So the good news is that phobias are relatively easy to deal with, providing you have the correct knowledge, support and treatment plan, along with a determined and proactive attitude. In life there are many REAL problems, which we all have to contend with, so my view is that we should conserve our energy to tackle those by ridding ourselves of the UNREAL threats, which are the hallmarks of a phobia.” ~Patricia Furness-Smith

The way I am recovering mostly, is exposure in combination with Buddhist philosophy (that can apply to anyone at all, not just Buddhist people – see Dhamma quote above). Even without the meditation part (which is also great!), I find Buddhist philosophy so very helpful in healing my fear (and in general!).

The reason that this is such a big accomplishment is not the amount of work it takes or the duration of treatment but the amount of courage & strength it takes to face it. It is hard!!

I am working on not just recovering but building my mindset in a way to see elevators as a safe place, a place of comfort, a space where I experience a feeling of being embraced in warmth & safety, security (i know security is an illusion but dont mind feeling secure in a place I once felt seemingly unbearable terror and panic). I don’t just want to tolerate them and don’t want them to just be a mundane thing or task I have to perform. I aspire to come to seeing them as an opportunity for a few moments of simple joy or pleasure.

I may not be recovered just yet or my recovery may be shaky and at risk for relapse again. It’s new and not quite ingrained yet. But it will be and then evolve into something more. I feel that Im already inclined to view elevators as a warm, cozy, safe place. Why not? They are safe for the most part. In there, alone, I am protected against the dangers of the world. I can feel that to some degree but not in great depth yet. Im working on it!

This is my goal!

I hope you are having a beautiful day or night wherever in the world you are!

Much love & light, always,

Xoxo Kim

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Phobia.

Roll With It – Steve Winwood

“When life is too much, roll with it, baby
Don’t stop and lose your touch, oh no, baby
Hard times knocking on your door
I’ll tell them you ain’t there no more
Get on through it, roll with it, baby
Luck’ll come and then slip away
You’ve gotta move, bring it back to stay
You just roll with it, baby
Come on and just roll with it, baby
You and me, roll with it, baby”

Recently, I chose to do something incredibly brave, to aid in my recovery. Every part of my body was telling me to run. There were all kinds of physical sensations all over my body, unpleasant ones, including light-headedness, fear, dry mouth, trembling sensations in my hands & legs, heart pounding…but some intuition deep inside was telling me to stay. The physical urge to run was much more easy to listen to and I was tempted. But I made up my mind. The intuition deep within is the wise voice, softer, gentler, just a whisper to “stay” next to that loud screaming “RUN” but definitely wiser. And I wont let the voice of fear drown the voice of wisdom.

So I chose to STAY.

I was standing before an elevator, alone, on the 2nd floor of a building. Right next to the elevator is a door to the stairs. I could have easily walked through the doorway to the stairs and walked down in less than a minute, which is what my intense fear was urging me to do.

But I chose to listen to that quiet but strong intuition telling me to empower myself, not my fear. For me to continuously avoid my fear (of small, closed in places, especially alone in elevators), at all costs, is to feed that fear. To give it power.

For me to face my fear, no matter how immense, no matter how suffocating, traumatic, terrible it is, is to loosen its grip on me, release me of its bondage and empower myself.

This is a fear so incredibly powerful, it knocks the wind out of me and weakens my body. I become lightheaded & disoriented and feel as if I may actually die. I have to face it & embrace it to conquer it. A cruel, twisted kind of irony to have to subject myself to the very thing that scares me most, but it is what it is.

I would have taken the stairs in this building anyway as it was only the 2nd floor but I saw this as an opportunity to evolve and I took it.

So I bravely stepped into that elevator and pushed the “1” button with my near trembling finger and watched in dismay as the doors closed on me, completely expunging my sense of control and actual control. The second the doors close, I am no longer in a position to choose. I cannot choose to run, to change my mind and take the stairs as I cant open an elevator on my own.

As the doors close, I instantly wonder if I have made a bad mistake. Maybe I should have run, taking the safe route, the easy way, the stairs. Sometimes, in buildings, we don’t have access to the stairs and I have no choice. But on this occasion, I had a choice and chose to lock myself in a big, mechanical box, alone.

But instead of completely breaking down, I stood strong and focused on my breath, each inhalation & exhalation and I became one with that breath. I felt the fear every few seconds, trying to get the best of me, that impending sense of panic threatening to overtake me, and acknowledged that fear then let it go. I felt it dissipate with each in breath & out breath. And before I knew it, there were the elevator doors wide open, inviting me to walk out into the rest of my day. Simple as that.

See, it’s really not so bad, is it?

But what if….

What if…the doors wouldn’t have opened?

What if…i would have been stuck in there all by myself?!

What if…the elevator malfunctioned and no one knew until way later or ever???

What if…one occasion it just doesn’t open and im stuck in there alone forever?!?!?!

What if….those incessant what ifs…relentless & plaguing…

After the doors close and sometimes even when Im not on an elevator but recently got out of one or will soon have to get inside one or sometimes just thinking about it, these are the thoughts that ensue. These what if’s…

But “what if…” doesn’t matter. What IS, is what does matter. And whatever is just is and that is that. I will breathe and focus and roll with it and endure until it’s over. And it will be over eventually, whatever “it” is.

After stepping off of the elevator, I planned to go right to another elevator and step inside, just to face my fear again.

And while it’s very helpful and wise and necessary to face our phobic fear again and again and again, there is such a thing as “too much, too soon” and “overdoing.” I know the value of breaks and rest and moderation and balance. Preserving energy and choosing wisely is a good thing. Generally, we have to keep facing this fear and not running. But a break when needed is also necessary. I felt that running directly to another elevator would have been more draining and detrimental than good. This may not always be the case but this moment, it was. Deep inside, I knew a rest is what I needed then, not more trauma.

Remember to keep going but also remember to rest when needed. Running, falling, once in a while is ok. Just keep getting back up!

Im not recovered. Not even halfway to recovery. And I may still have relapses and probably will before & even after full recovery. Who knows? But I discovered a place in me with a strong foundation that isn’t easy to be demolished and can be rebuilt even if it is.

Im not sorry to have encountered this struggle. I dont wish it never happened to me and dont necessarily wish it would just go away. Of course, I want this fear to heal and thats why im doing all this work. But i dont mind it. It’s a gift to have this opportunity to get better and have deeper empathy for others in similar situations. I see so much beauty in it.

Just last month, I think, my fear was so frequent, so intense, so debilitating, I became depressed and suicidal. I could hardly hold a toothbrush. I wanted to die just knowing that it’s possible to be trapped in an elevator alone. Just knowing it’s possible. Not even because it may happen. Just because it’s possible. My depression became an entity of its own and was not even just about the fear anymore.

Now here I am. Strong and still standing.

I want to share it because i believe we all have that strength to endure any battle and be even better for it. We all have the strength to see beauty in any struggle and to reach out to others in any way we can, to inspire and uplift, or just listen and understand.

The way to recover is to seize opportunities to practice no matter how difficult it is. It is very, very difficult but worth the struggle, the trauma, the pain, the terror.

Im not posting this to brag. Lol Im posting this because one night I was laying in my bed desperately longing to meet someone. A strong woman with some sort of severe phobia, preferably one similar to my own but any would do. I pined for a woman who faces her worst fear and lives to tell about it. A woman who conquered or conquers that fear. One who chose to rise above and lift others along the way.

I laid in my bed and fantasized and hoped so much to meet this strong, confident woman, either in person, in a book, or online and dreamed of being cloaked in her strength, enveloped in her compassion, lifted by her motivation, and empowered by her story. Inspired by her light.

I wanted to find blogs, books, stories… that chronicle her experiences.

I wanted to find this woman somewhere, anywhere, but couldn’t find her.

Then it hit me….

I can be this woman.

I am this woman.

I’m her.

So here I am, sharing my great fear and hoping to inspire, lift, help empower, and console someone who is struggling.

If you are someone who is struggling with a phobia/anxiety of any sort, maybe a social phobia/anxiety, or fear involving being on an airplane when you have to get on one(I have to get on elevators for work and feel your pain!), insects, or maybe a less common fear like fear of swallowing or fear of dolls, maybe a fear of dogs or noises… or any difficult situation, I embrace you in my love & am cheering you on. We all have different triggers but it’s that terrible, breathtaking panic & fear, outright terror, that we can all relate to.

Keep going. You got this!

Xoxo Kim❤

Welcome to rock bottom -the only way now is UP

“Face to face, out in the heat

Hanging tough, staying hungry

They stack the odds still we take to the street

For the kill with the skill to survive”🐯

Eye of the Tiger – Survivor

Here is a post I wrote a couple days ago and just edited it a bit.

“Welcome to Rock Bottom

One day, after another routinely dreadful morning, I sat in my car looking at our office and thinking, ‘I DO NOT want to go in there. I hate my job. I can’t stand Frank. I don’t make enough money. I am so underutilized! Should I leave the company? Would I even be missed? What’s the point of all this anyway? Is this really my life? This can’t be my life.’ And there it was. I had finally reached it—I was at rock bottom. As I mentioned, I believe rock bottom is the moment when you finally find the power and the strength you’ve always been lacking to change your today and go on to create a better tomorrow. I knew I couldn’t get any lower, and at that moment, I realized that all of the training, coaching, reading, and inspiring I’d engaged in just a few years earlier had not disappeared completely. I started to sense something deep within. There was still a tiny spark of hope that things could get better. That internal spark was like a smothered flame that just needed a little air, and as soon as I realized the spark was there, it was as if someone poured kerosene on it. I started to think: ‘If my circumstances won’t change, maybe I can change the way I look at my circumstances, and maybe as a result, they actually WILL change.'”

These are wise words by Kevin Clayson, author of Flip the Gratitude Switch. I have experienced “rock bottom” before, just like he mentions here, where it’s like I just can’t get any lower, so desperate, plummeting to the lowest depths of my despair, until I can’t possibly sink any lower. Pulled deeper and deeper and deeper into some dark, seemingly endless abyss when finally I realize there is an end. And I have reached it.

What do we do when our world is crumbling on top of us, when everything shatters, when it’s hard to stand, so difficult just to live & breathe, and we are pulled so low we can’t go any lower?

We rise.

Usually when I have experienced this “rock bottom,” it’s with depression and sometimes when my chronic physical pain disorder is flaring up to what seems like unbearable levels and my body is wracked in physical agony beyond belief. The only way I can get lower when I’m like this, is to be put in the ground. I haven’t experienced these things in a long while. My physical pain disorder has been doing so well. I have been experiencing mild to no pain each & every day. Thanking my lucky stars! And I can’t even remember when I was last depressed! I’m so happy!

But it’s true, this morning I realized I have hit “rock bottom.” A different kind of rock bottom. Not depression of any kind or physical pain. But still I have found my self in a very low place in this life. Two months ago, I think it was, October, I wasn’t depressed or in physical pain but was in Hell everyday for a couple weeks. It ended for a while and now is back!🙊😱

This Hell I speak of is fear. Terror. Not just a bit of anxiety. Fullblown fear. It’s not fear in general but about a specific thing. As I mentioned here, in a post titled Serendipitous Strength, I used to be deathly afraid of being closed in small places that I can’t just get out of the second I want to, especially elevators and especially when I’m alone. I have been this way for as long as I can remember. Why is a mystery. As a child, I had breakdowns going on elevators even with my mom & dad.

I healed myself. It is an incredible accomplishment and awe-inspiring. The fact that I had a relapse doesn’t matter. It doesnt change how incredible it is. I healed this fear once and can and will heal it again.

I never worked on this fear specifically but during my personal development journey, my quest to find healing, working on myself to help heal my depression and cope with tmjd “cluster headaches” without realizing it, I was conquering my fear of being closed in. With my personal development plan I teach myself and train my brain to know I can handle and conquer anything. To know I will always be free no matter what position I’m in in this life. To know life is a gift no matter what. To see positivity and opportunity in any situation no matter how dreadful. I trained my brain with meditation and quotes and music and songs and writing to stay calm and composed for the most part, in any situation no matter what, no matter how painful physically or emotionally. (Out of my post Serendipitous Strength)

The #1 one thing that helps me with my fear is my Buddhist studies, not even just meditation but the writings I read even when I don’t put them into practice as intended. Just the reads are so powerful. All of these other things, quotes, songs, basic mindfulness…, helped me to a great extent, with depression & chronic pain and when I found Kadampa Buddhism, I found deeper healing and healing for this fear.

Somewhat recently, I suffered a relapse and my old fear returned to me with a vengeance. The second the elevator doors close and I’m on there alone, my first thought is “I’m screwed” and a sense of panic arises.

For work, I sometimes have to get on elevators. For about ten months I had to seven days a week, mostly by myself. Thankfully my fear was healed. But in a fraction of a second, while on an elevator, by myself, I suffered a relapse. I made the mistake of watching the numbers go up and waiting for the doors to open and you know when we watch & wait, a second feels like forever. I felt the doors took a second longer than usual to open and that’s all it took to bring that breath-taking fear crashing back into me. Flooded with terror, when the door finally opened, I stumbled into the hallway, trembling inside & out, legs like jelly, dizzy, panicked.

And my fear has been with me since then. I no longer have to be on an elevator every single day anymore and that may be part of the problem. I’m no longer accustomed to it and no longer have that chance to practice being calm on an elevator everyday. Now with those two things, the relapse & being out of touch with elevators, I nearly fall to pieces when I have to get on one by myself. I’m not scared anymore if I’m on an elevator with a dog or a human.

What if the elevator malfunctions while I’m on there myself and I’m trapped inside a box for who knows how long? My worst nightmare. I know I can handle it. My conviction is strong. But I don’t always feel that I can handle it. My conviction never falters. I know anyone can handle anything if we train our brain and adjust our attitude. But sometimes I focus too much on the feeling of not being able to handle it. And i fear if i get trapped, I will become a blubbering wreck and never recover. Two or more weeks away and when I think of it, my head is in turmoil.

(Photo not mine)

I am not someone who curses a lot out loud, in writing, or in my head. It’s not that I think it’s wrong. I love when people curse a lot. Lol It’s just not me. But early, this morning I was walking up a street thinking about how in a few weeks I will be required to get onto an elevator(the doors for staircases in some buildings open to get outside but are locked on the outside to get upstairs so elevators are generally required), most likely alone, and everyday for at least a week, and how I’m going to be living & breathing fear, I’m going to be a total wreck in my head, just like two months ago, and I just thought Fuck this shit. Seriously, fuck it. I am done. Not done with life or with work. I am done being conquered by this fear. So done. And I realized I have hit rock bottom two months ago and am still here now. And I remembered Mr. Clayson’s story about how rock bottom is our opportunity to rise above. I will rise above this fear. I will conquer it.

How? I’m not quite sure but I know I will. I will discipline my brain. And I have a few things in mind. More intensive Dharma practice & gratitude practice, The Work, rhythmic breathing, desensitization…

There is no place for this fear. I don’t want it and I won’t have it. I don’t have to accept it because it can be changed. Two months ago I found it difficult to focus on anything other than this fear. I spilled coffee all over because my hands were trembling, My legs were shaky and I was lightheaded. After getting off an elevator, it took me so long to recover, those mornings & nights. Outside I probably looked a bit shaken up but inside, I was wrecked. (I did face my fear and kept getting on elevators though, {BY MYSELF, ALONE!!!, ME!!! On an elevator ALONE!!! Whhhaaattt?! Holy guacamole!} which is a display of great strength & courage. I did what I had to do while not repressing my fear) I felt that I couldn’t even stand up straight each day.

This is unacceptable and I will change it. Whatever it takes. I will not avoid elevators and will not put up with this terror. And there’s no place for it in my world. It’s not welcome here and I do not have to accept it.

I healed my fear mostly with Buddhist philosophy. And I will again. This is the main thing that brought me so much deep healing and I know without a doubt, it will again. I just have to concentrate.

Recently, I received a Dorje Shugden Empowerment and I am totally counting on it (& my previous Empowerments) helping me cope with & heal this fear.

Om vajra wiki witrana söha.

OM AH RA PA TSA NA DHI

Just like Mr. Clayson shares in the excerpt above, it can feel like all our previous strength, wisdom, personal development is down the drain, but it’s not. Somewhere deep inside, there is strength, wisdom, courage even if it seems to be long gone or seems like we never had any to begin with.

What I am promoting here is not necessarily any specific techniques like gratitude, meditation, conscious breathing or philosophy like Buddhist philosophy, though I do generally promote those. Here, I am just suggesting that we rise above our fear, pain, struggles…and keep going. Keep moving up. Pro-act. Let’s not sink to the bottom and stay there. Do something. Whatever it takes. Whether it’s professional help, meditation, personal development books, exercise, gratitude practice…find something, do something, and just keep going.

(Photo not mine)

It can be done. I did this before and if you are reading this now, so can you. I was able to make the choice to face a fear so powerful that I feel it can drive me insane, like I will lose all sense of language and awareness…, face it & conquer it and completely overcome it. Whatever your issue is, grief, fear, depression, addiction of any sort or something that may seem less serious…you can face it and overcome it. It’s not the problem itself that is actually the problem; it’s how we attach to it, perceive it, view it, react to it…and we have a choice to change that.

“I choose to FIGHT BACK! I choose to RISE, not fall! I choose to LIVE, not die! And I know, I know that what’s within me is also WITHIN YOU.”

We can & we will.

I am here cheering you on right along with cheering myself on. I have a lot of work to do and it’s every bit worth it. Keep going.

“When you’re at the end of your rope, tie a knot and hold on!!”

Much love & light & strength to you,

Xoxo Kim❤

P.s Elevators are the worst invention in the history of ever!!! I have a few choice words for the inventor! Blahhh!!!

Dare to live

IMG_14173579


This is not my photo but it’s inspiring so I’m sharing it!

I love how it can be interpreted as living, like living to the fullest, doing what makes us come alive, taking risks and adventures or daring to live in its most basic sense, just carrying on, breathing, keep on living, breathing, loving.

If you have ever been suicidal, you know this takes courage & much strength.

However you interpret it, I hope you are inspired. ~Hugs~ ❤

😀 ❤

Good Day to you! (or night!)

xoxo Kim

For them. <3

12400701_1654638248133825_644904394002916819_n(1)

(this is not my photo)

I wrote this a month ago but never posted it yet. It has been saved in my drafts for a while. So here it is!

Caution: This may be a trigger for some. It’s about my suicidal urges. I hope you click it off and not read if you have even the slightest concern that details about my suicidal inclination may trigger serious distress. Or you can just scroll through and look at the inspiring photos instead! 😀

One night and early in the morning recently I experienced violent suicidal urges. I haven’t been extremely depressed. Like I said, it can just appear out of nowhere and then leave out of nowhere. This was triggered by something in my external environment. It’s usually not triggered by anything but it can be. Usually problems I have don’t trigger it but recently a problem I encountered did trigger it.

Sometimes when this happens and whatever my problem is goes away, it’s too late and I’m already pulled in. The problem going away won’t always pull me out of the depression or suicidal urges/thoughts.  The damage is done. 

The problem I encountered ended kind of quickly and everything was peaceful and calm again and it was over. But my suicidal urges lingered on all through the night and into the morning and even later in the day. I still have them once in a while. 

It’s not really important what the problem is/was. I mentioned here before how I am extremely playful and love to joke and clown around. My sister doesn’t like it. My playful personality often clashes with her more serious one. My jokes are never insulting or degrading or mocking. They never have been and they never will be. I am not that way. Sometimes when my sister leaves a room or my mom does, I just joke around and say “don’t be too long.” Or “hurry back” or something dumb like that. Sometimes if someone asks me to get something, I bring something else as a joke. Like my mom asked me for an envelope when we were in a post office one day and I brought a very large envelope over just to be funny. She wasn’t amused. She said no one likes a clown. 
But I’m amused still. Lol 
One day years ago my mom wanted a tuna sandwich and I convinced my sister to let me bring her back the two feet long one. It was hilarious! Still is! At least to me! 

My mom thinks it’s annoying and my sister finds it beyond annoying when I joke usually. 

My mom is easily amused but not as much as I am but she doesn’t like when people can never be serious. It’s not that I’m never serious; I just have a very playful nature and I wouldn’t have it any other way! 

My sister doesn’t handle things well at all so something I see as an innocent joke to be funny, she sees as an attack on her.

One night she was leaving the room and I said “don’t be long!” and laughed and she got revenge on me by taking my clothes and hiding them and taking a bottle of soda and pouring it all over my bed. I had to sleep in wet sticky stuff I couldn’t get up because it was late at night.
Occasionally the memory still provokes those horrible urges. 

My mom and dad mostly took her side and made me out to be a monster. This doesn’t happen often or anything.
They said my joking has been going on too long. They did not agree with how she handled it but I was still the “worse one” for acting dumb.

Also, I love to compliment people. Sometimes I’m too shy but I’m much better with it. I love to compliment the girls at work when I love their clothes, makeup, or hair or anything. I’m not shy around my sister so I’m frequently complimenting her on her style and hair and stuff. But she thinks or claims to think I’m mocking her or just joking when I do. And I’m really not. Again, I’m not like that. So she told me recently never to compliment her again and even if I’m not mocking her, she couldn’t care less about my opinion of her, good or bad. It’s ok if she doesn’t appreciate my compliments and doesn’t care what I think. It’s unfortunate but I’m not crushed. Not everyone will love and appreciate us or warmly receive our good intentions and that really is ok! 

But I never want someone to think I’m making a mockery of someone or joking like that! I never would!

I’m not sensitive like my sister. I can handle stuff like people talking negatively about me (when I’m depressed though, it can add to it) but I don’t like it and would never do that to someone. 

My sister doesn’t mind me writing about it. I’m not writing as an insult to anyone to make anyone look bad. My sister writes about our arguments and stuff on Facebook. I don’t like people taking problems with family and friends to social media trying to make them look bad (even when it has nothing to do with me). It’s inappropriate. But I think it’s ok to express our problems certain ways, unbiased ways like I’m doing. It’s good to write about/share our problems and life lessons learned. Generally, I don’t write things that involve others but occasionally I do but not in a negative way. 

I know I’m not completely innocent because even though I don’t intend to infuriate people, I know my jokes annoy them. I just don’t think they’re that bad because they are not abusive or insulting, just dumb and immature. It’s just how I am. 

I’m thankful to be the way I am. I won’t change me ever but I can just not say joking things to those who can’t take a joke. There will always be those who love the playful me and those who do not. I don’t have to put too much into those who don’t. 

IMG_14172574_1

This is me a few nights ago. I felt a sudden burst of inspiration to get dolled up, put on a pair of five inch heels and take pics of myself. ❤

This isn't about slandering anyone, it's about my experience and my decision to hold on when it seems so much easier to give up and kill myself. Instead of just hinting at something or saying I recently experienced a problem, I will say what it is. 

I haven't been this suicidal in quite a while. Not this bad.
:-O

 It's not just suicidal thinking; it's very impulsive, violent urges all throughout me and images in my head that are extremely hard to resist. Sometimes it's just thoughts but on more seldom occasions, it's this. And sometimes I don't know how much longer I can hold on when it's like this. They get harder and harder to resist. 
I know it's a choice to act on them or not and I don't have to but it's so hard when it's like that.
And sometimes I want to act on them and terminate myself. 
I would never kill someone else, I'm not that much of a monster, but this is only me.

 I have horrible urges to throw myself in speeding traffic when I'm out walking sometimes, just out of nowhere, but I never would because that would involve others.
I have other urges too sometimes, like recently when I was alone at night, that won't directly involve others. I won't ever hurt anyone else or take anyone else out with me when I go or involve anyone in my nonsense. No matter how low I sink, I always know never to hurt or even involve anyone else directly, no living sentient beings, no humans, no animals, no insects. I used to go to the subway often when I was in college and plan on ending it or just seeing if I was able to get up the nerve. Sometimes I came so close. Usually I couldn't bring myself to go not even close. It was so so scary. When the train comes speeding, loud and clanking and that lethal air blasts at me and I take a step back. It’s so very different than merely fantasizing.

I knew it is selfish because it can make people late for things like work and appointments and scare people who have to see. But I thought their inconvenience would be nothing next to my pain and I justified it. But I realized later that it's not ok to involve others even if they won't be hurt. No one else should ever be interfered with just because I have problems. And imagine the psychological damage some may suffer having to witness something like that and the poor person in charge of operating the train. It wouldn't ever be that person's fault but still that person would have to live with that. And some people suffer serious guilt even if it's not their fault at all. 

So now I only seriously contemplate ways that won't interfere with others directly. It's true that someone will have to find it and it won't be pleasant for whoever it is. But when almost anyone dies, any way, the corpse will have to be found. I can't help that. 

Anyway, usually things like this problem don't depress me. I'm very easy going. But that night, it just triggered me to become depressed. Very, very depressed. I was already depressed in a very mild way off and on for a few days. 

I felt like nothing has any flavor, I had no purpose and never will, nothing sounds or feels right, nothing really interested me too much, soda had no fizz to it, colors weren't as vibrant. I had some slight desire. Like for food, reading ghost stories, and taking pictures but nowhere near as passionate as usual. It was like it was weakened or covered in plastic, like everything covered and I couldn't really touch it. I knew it wouldn't matter if I killed myself because I really wanted to die and no one would have cared anyway and there was no purpose in anything for me. I saw no reason for me to live and I did not want to live at all. I wanted everything to end, not just the pain, the good with the bad. I just wanted to be dead. But I kept holding on anyway. 

I remember seeing a bright red car that brought some sense of feeling back into me.
The color so vibrant and lovely. All was momentarily ok. It reminded me that there's always beauty in the ugly, light in the darkness, even if it's very simple, like a bright red car.
It's possible for things like that to help me to a certain extent even when I'm in the deepest, darkest despair because I'm naturally very positive and I strengthened my natural habit of seeing the beauty and goodness around me, even more, with practice through the years. 

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As depressed & suicidal as I have recently been and I still saw all positive, happy, beautiful things just jumping out at me. Even when I wasn’t trying. It was annoying some occasions because I wanted to die so badly, so desperately, but felt guilty and absurd acting on it when there was all beautiful things and positive thoughts jumping into my head uncontrollably. Lol My mind is so much in the habit, both naturally and an intentional conscious habit I have practiced & developed, of positive thinking and an attitude of gratitude, that I think so positively even when I’m on the brink of killing myself. Now, it’s not always enough to stop me or make me want to live but it’s so helpful (and annoying) and makes it less likely I will go.

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(mine! 😀 )

I couldn’t believe some of the inspiring shit running through my head when I was trying to muster up the “courage” to kill myself. 
I would think of all reasons I should die and be convinced then my mind would come up with: 

“But….you can be greater than anything that can happen to you!…”

“But…there’s always something to hold on for…”

“But…all I have to do is change my way of thinking about these things…”

“But…we all have something to contribute to the world…how can I if I end it…”

“But…I can use my pain to our advantage and potentially help someone else…”

“But…there’s still so much beauty surrounding me…”

“But..don’t sweat the small stuff! And it’s all small stuff!..”

“But…it’s all about the attitude and I can change the attitude!”

“But…be Brave! Keep going!…”

And more….

Often for every agonizing thought and great reason to kill myself, a positive, beautiful thought would uncontrollably pop up, a reason to live.

Kept getting in my way. Blah! Lol 😉 

There’s something so positive ingrained into me and threaded throughout my whole existence. There’s so much love in me even when all I want is to be dead. 

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(lol this isn’t my photo)

Also, when I want to but don’t kill myself, it’s not always because some part of me truly wants to live. It’s not necessarily ambivalence, though sometimes it is. It’s just that we all have this biological/evolutionary will to live, which is different than a psychological desire to live. Nature has equipped us with this to keep our species going. A single celled organism with no consciousness has this same will to live.
It doesn’t mean the thing “wants” to live.

Even long after the desire burns out and the will is reduced to just a shred, this will to live is fierce. A thin sliver is so fierce. It’s not my choice. It’s primitive to keep me going, it doesn’t mean I want to. It’s hard to overcome it. Suicidal urges are unnatural to it. They contradict it.
And it’s often stronger than those urges.

 It annoys me when people say/write that just the fact that we’re alive, shows we must not be sure if we want to die. No. I have been so sure. 
It’s just this evolutionary thing or whatever, really gets in my way. 

That night and early in the morning I battled recurrent violent urges to kill myself. Even in my slumber. I dreamed of dying. Taking myself out. I even had a certain method in mind and a plan. I had uncontrollable images flashing through my head of what I wanted to do to myself, what I planned to do. 

It was so physical. 

I kept getting up in the night, getting ready to go then changing my mind. 

Whenever I seriously considered killing myself that night and early in the morning, I thought of all the inspirational things I post and share and truly believe in. And I thought of the sweet messages people write to me expressing encouragement, gratitude, appreciation….and I wasn’t sure I wanted to throw it all away just like that.

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(not my pic)

I know what it’s like to suffer and to experience true joy & happiness & love and my main intention with the things I post is to uplift others and inspire anyone I can. How inspiring can I be to others if I intentionally kill myself? That’s a very unfortunate message to send to the world, don’t you think? When things are too agonizing, painful, overwhelming, we give up? 

I don’t want to end with that kind of energy. I don’t want to leave that negative energy in the uni-verse. When/if I kill myself, that negative energy will linger. It’s not good for others. And it’s just a bad, bad message to the world. Every single act I perform, every word I speak, every breath I take has the potential for a ripple effect to some degree for better or for worse. So why not make them all positive? Or positive as possible. 

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(this isn’t my photo)

And I thought of all the potential I have to touch someone else for the better even if just a very small, simple way. Each day I live, each moment, each breath, is a chance to love someone else. Each encounter no matter how brief, can brighten the world for another. And this is true for all of us. 

No matter how much pain I’m in and how much I want to die, how much it feels like I have to die, I can still help someone else somehow. 

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(not my photo)

For a couple hours, I laid in bed in a near catatonic state, no energy to move, no desire, no strength to even pull a trigger if I had a gun. At some points, when I’m depressed, I have literally zero desire for anything other than death and can’t even think of living to help others or for the good things. Sometimes even the joy the good things can bring, doesn’t seem enough to keep me alive.  I seriously could hardly move or even breathe. 

And I thought of all the poor people who lost their battle with depression and suicidal urges.

I want to carry on for them. 
I don’t really know if it makes sense but it does to me. 

It doesn’t mean they weren’t strong or inspiring or beautiful or would have never wanted to live again. They just couldn’t see it then. But if they held on longer, even just a second longer(suicidal thoughts and urges can be so fleeting, coming and going,…a fraction of a second can make all the difference), they could have found that strength, saw their own beauty. So I want to keep going even when I don’t, to put more love and beauty into the world. The world has been deprived of theirs so I’ll try to put even more for all of us. It’s so hard sometimes but I’ll try. I can never take their place and never would anyway but I can honor them. 

For some of us it won’t go away and stay away. It comes and goes. 

Like waves in an ocean. 

Sometimes the oceans are calm and peaceful and the waves, gentle. But other moments the ocean is loud and aggressive, the waves are violent, threatening to knock us over and pull us under. But if we stand strong, they won’t keep us down too long.

Sometimes I have to battle these violent waves right now until it becomes calm and peaceful again. 

I may have written here before about my analogy to the oceans and waves.

It’s so fitting.

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(yeah, sometimes it is! Not my pic though!)

I’m very open about my condition. It’s something I battled most of my whole life. Like I said, it can flare up out of nowhere for no reason or be triggered by an external factor or triggered by my own thinking or memories sometimes. It’s not my personality or attitude or even a mere mood. It’s like a sickness that takes me over even though I’m naturally, generally happy. In the same way a physical illness can. 

I want to be open and honest about my experience with depression, even the darkest, ugliest parts. And I want to be open & honest about my pleasant experiences and happiness. The depression doesn’t take that away. 

I’m very open on here and in person. I often share the blog here on Facebook where people I know in person and those I don’t, have access to it. I want people to know my name and see my face and read my story.

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Here I am! 😀 This is me a few days ago! My smile is genuine. We can see if someone is truly happy in the moment, usually, not by the smile but the eyes. There’s a spark whether or not we’re smiling. 😀 ❤

I have nothing to cover up. I'm the same me in person as I am online. I write more than I talk and probably reveal more in writing because the opportunity to write just makes it easier but I'm the same. 

I never felt compelled to keep my depression and suicidal contemplation a big secret. And I never will. I did used to be more hesitant and embarrassed to talk about it but still found the courage. Sometimes I still hesitate before speaking or posting certain things that have to do with my condition but I usually always find the courage to eventually share it.

 I don't tell it to just everyone. Some I would never tell to directly but I don't care if they know. Some people are much easier to tell than others, more inviting, more open to it, especially those who know the pain intimately. 

I don't tell people when I'm seriously considering ending my life, of course not. I'm not trying to get put away (it's not so bad being hospitalized, I experienced a couple hospitalizations both voluntary and involuntary – it's a hassle though but helpful in some ways) or inflict guilt upon anyone. If I tell someone I want to kill myself then I really kill myself, that person may feel guilty even if the person doesn't like me or really care. I don't want anyone to carry that burden.  I don't go into much detail about my fantasies usually or plans or things like that because I don't want to distress anyone. But basically, I'm very open about it in general. 

For now I choose to keep going for all the people who lost our battle and especially for the people still alive, like me, who have so much difficulty holding on sometimes, for anyone whose life may cross mine even years into the future, who I can help in any way, even if it's just actively listening, letting someone borrow my pen, a warm smile, a loving hug, an inspiring post, a sweet conversation…..

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(not my pic)

Who knows who I can help maybe without even realizing the impact? Whether it’s in a practical way like letting the person have something of mine or in a way like listening to someone talk or being encouraging to others. 

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(this totally IS my photo! ;-D)

Just because I’m a suicidal wreck doesn’t mean I don’t have what it takes to love or to help. ❤ In fact, my experience helps even deepen my empathy for the problems of others and helps deepen my wisdom. Even when I'm currently on the brink of ending it, I can still love. 

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(not my pic)

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(I usually do! And yeah, this isn’t mine!)

I can’t be sure I won’t ever kill myself but for now I plan to hold on. ❤ ❤

Not for me but for them. ❤

😀

~Hugs~ & love to you. 

Xoxo Kim 

Courage to overcome

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“Find courage to overcome the circumstance.” ~
Lailah Gifty Akita

This is a great reminder that we cannot always choose our circumstances but we can choose to react in a positive way. 
Even if we cannot currently choose our emotions, we can choose to think and react positively even if we aren’t truly feeling it just yet.
“Fake it til’ you make it.”
If we act in positive ways and choose positive thoughts, we are more likely to begin to feel and live in positive ways, strengthening and developing positive habits. 
This isn’t always easy, it can be so tempting , so easy to give in and succumb to unpleasant situations, emotions, and negativity.  
But it’s worth the work it takes to become and remain positive. Even if we’re naturally, generally positive, there’s usually always room to evolve and be even better.
We can choose to do something as simple as stopping to take a few deep breaths instead of reacting in unpleasant ways, reading uplifting quotes, going outside for a walk or to look at the beautiful sky…

Our teacher in Buddhist class tells us to stop after an unpleasant encounter and before reacting, take a deep breath and ask “What would Buddha do?” 
We don’t have to be a Buddhist to adhere to this wisdom. Buddha is a symbol of peace, calm, love & compassion….

Even if we don’t know for sure what Buddha would do, we can be certain of what he would not do. He would never react with violence or bitterness or give up and quit his life of compassion, he would never allow problems to wear him out.  

I saw this quote today and decided to share here! It can apply to the most minor problems like being stuck in traffic, someone looking at us in unpleasant ways or saying something we don’t like and to more serious problems like depression, physical illnesses, grief, and other difficult situations.

What a great reminder!

😀

Much love & light to you,

xoxo Kim ❤

You’ll Never Know <3

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Recently my sister, my mom, and me watched The movie, Curly Sue, and at the end of that movie, the song sung by Ringo Starr, “You’ll Never Know,” is featured. What a lovely song!

I like the tune, pace and feel of it and the message is so wise. I find it inspiring and a great reminder to accept life as it is, value it for the unpredictable gift that it is. We never know what will happen. We can be having an amazing day then out of nowhere be struck by a terrible tragedy but we can be having a day that feels so wrong, so devastating, so broken then out of nowhere a wonderful surprise comes along to lift us up, inspire us, to heal us.

“Life goes on
no one gets rehearsal
life goes on
through everyday reversal 
with every dawn everyday is full of chances 
to find some good before it’s gone…” 

Things are fleeting. Life itself is fleeting. When things are going great, they won’t be forever. At any second, things can come crashing down on top of us. While this is unpleasant, we can use this knowledge to our advantage. We can’t always make bad things not happen but we can seize and embrace the good, celebrate it while it’s here. But not get overly attached. Know that it won’t always be this way. Everything ends. Then when we lose something good, we won’t be as unhappy and ungrateful because we meditate upon the fact that everything eventually comes to an end.
When we know what we have while we have it, when we appreciate it to the fullest, we have less regrets and less sadness when it leaves us. So let’s embrace what we have while we have it. 

And when things are not going well, know it won’t always be this bad. 
None of us get to prepare for all of life, we are all susceptible to surprises, both pleasant and not.

But life keeps going on. 

And we have chances to get better and better. 

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“you’ll never know which way a day is gonna take you
there’s always some surprise that comes along to shake you
you’ll never see exactly where the road will lead you
and when it comes to love you gamble when you need to
you’ll maybe break your heart on one unlucky throw
but then again, you’ll never know”

I love this message about taking chances. It’s worth it to reach out in love even if we may not receive love back. First of all, you never know, maybe the love will be returned. And if not, at least you have love in you and courage to lavish it onto the world or someone. That’s really all that matters!  What we give. Not what we get. 

It’s worth it to take the risks.

If you make an attempt, you may or may not succeed how you would like to but if you don’t take the chance you will never succeed how you want.

Try it and if it doesn’t work out, at least you’ll have the experience, life lessons, strength…and at least you tried. You won’t have to keep thinking “what if….?”

Instead of viewing the uncertainty and fleeting-ness of life in a negative light and allowing it to provoke anxiety in us, we can see it in a thrilling way, be exhilarated and curious, see the beauty in it. Life is what we make it, so let’s make it beautiful! 

😀 ❤

Here is a video to the song:

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Much0 l0ve to you! 😀

xoxo Kim ❤