Am I Anyone without a Smile?

Some days, the smiles just don't want to come.

Some days, the smiles just don’t want to come.

From theater to Disney, my life has constantly been filled with places where I need to smile. I enjoy smiling. When I see others smiling, my heart feels lighter especially if I helped bring about their joy. I don’t mind keeping a smile on my face for hours on end when I see it positively influencing others.

However, I sometimes feel more like crying than smiling. Then, I realize that people think of me as someone who always smiles. Who would I be without my smile? This haunts me.

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Things that Put a Smile on My Face

About to ride on Dumbo

Riding the rides makes me smile.

After my last post, several people expressed concern about me. Now I feel a bit overly dramatic. Yes, life is stressful and hard down here in Florida. However, it is also full of amazement and new victories.

My smile falters with lots of hate for my body, PTSD flashbacks, anxiety, and depression. Yet, the smile returns daily for many things. Here are just a few: Continue reading

Feeling Good about the Food You Eat

Pasta dish

Feeling good about your food choices can be hard but is possible.

Food is an issue that fills many people with guilt. You want that extra cookie but would prefer that no one knows that. Yes, you finished the rest of the ice cream, but who would it help if you confessed that? Those potato chips might not be as nutritious as that banana, yet you shamefully eat the chips in the dark corner.

Usually, I feel very guilty about food. Recently, however, my groceries have helped me to feel healthy and excited about having a good diet. There are certainly moments of self-disgust but not nearly as many.

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Agreeing to Be Disagreeable

Meeting Cinderella at Halloween

I dressed up as Cinderella for Mickey’s Not So Scary Halloween Party.

Being disagreeable is a bad thing. So is speaking your mind, being honest, or not liking what everyone else did. You had to be sweet, smiley, and agreeable.

Or at least that is what I thought. Lately, I have begun to allow myself to disagree with others or even argue my point when they belittle my thoughts.

Now, I still want to be kind and respectful to others. However, I no longer feel the bondage of being perfectly agreeable all of the time. Having a bit of spunk and honesty makes me more fun and real, not a bad person.

Realizing this is a bit scary. Have I gone too far and become someone opposite to who I want to be? I don’t think so, but I still worry…

Even so, going back to being the smiling, always conceding girl would be awful. That would be backtracking, right? Progress is being made slowly each day.

Feeling Depressed in a Wonderful Life

At the beach

My beach adventure today was wonderful!

How can someone feel so sad but elated at the same time? Depression makes no sense.

Today was wonderful. I walked on pillow-like sand, laughed with new friends from Japan, swam like a dolphin in the ocean, ran across the beach for the first time, and then relaxed shopping a bit.

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File That Under “Happiness”

Me trying on a huge hat

Trying on huge hats at Chapel Hats in Downtown Disney was certainly a moments for my “happiness” folder.

I like labeling and arranging things. Putting my books in a new order (alphabetical by author, similar genre, date published, etc) was an exciting task that I did around once a month. Color coding priced items for a garage sale, rearranging the school supplies in my drawer, checking off items on a to-do list – being an Aspie might contribute to my enthusiasm of these tasks.

Similarly, filing things brings me joy. I have folders full of programs of shows, recipes to try, pictures of places to visit, and medical information about my medications. The things that I keep serve some purpose; I want to try to accomplish/make it some day, remember the time a moment happened, have information for later, etc.

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With the Wind Just Flying Through My Hair

What a great coping skill to use! It might be difficult, but try to put yourself into another situation or experience something as another person. Even better, go back to a happy moment of your life. That sounds lovely to me!

Raising 5 Kids With Disabilities and Remaining Sane Blog

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Like many of you when driving, my mind races with thoughts of things I have to do, problems to solve, errands to run, crisis to deal with and so forth. Yesterday was different. As I was driving on a back road to get to a client’s home, I found myself following a gentleman, (or gentlewoman as I couldn’t tell; the only clue being the gray hair on the back of his/her head.) Because it was an awesomely beautiful day after a horrendous winter of being snowbound, the top to the MG convertible was down, sunlight shining happily on the occupant. Looking at the car, I recognized it as similar to the one bought with my own money when I was a teenager. My pride and joy that was purchased with my dad, a gentleman who did not generally interact with people, including me. Buying that car bonded us…

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Good News is Everywhere

We so often hear bad news. Children are dying, corruption is rampant in politics, natural disasters wipes out homes, and anger drives families away from each other. These stories seem to be all there is in newspapers, television stations, and online today.

However, studying journalism has helped me to realize that many people involved in the news industry desire to raise awareness to difficult issues and prevent society from becoming apathetic. This driving force is admirable although it can be taken too far. We also need to the good news that surrounds us every day.

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Needing to Be Happy for the Holidays

Christine and Mario with a present snowman

Christine and Mario with a present snowman

Holidays are a festive time of year. Decorations deck halls, choirs sing merrily, gifts pile up under trees, and store clerks beam as people bustle about the store. Christmas pretty much equals joy, right?

Well, that is what we are pressured to think. However, for many people especially those with depression, this time of year can be very saddening and frightening. Christmas lights blink overwhelmingly, choirs are filled with people who might judge, gifts lack love, and store clerks are probably wanting to strangle customers while faking a smile.

How can we find peace and joy during this season without faking?

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Listaliciousness: WW2 Christmas Ad, Prison Dance, and the Cinderella Movie

It's Not You, It's My PTSD

Memories haunt, words remind, fears remain, but I will survive.

Today was extremely stressful. Work has highly triggered my PTSD to the point where I feel almost unable to cope. However, I am hanging in there and trying to remain calm. Wonderful friends helped today to be better as well as my managers. Still, others do not understand mental illness and grow frustrated with my inability to be “normal” or just take a joke.

Anyway, here are some links for you. Finding them was a bit more difficult this week for some reason. Instead of looking at the rest of the web, I focused on WordPress. Most of them are from bloggers that I greatly respect. Hopefully you will enjoy the articles.

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