As everyone can see, I’ve been missing for several months…While I wish I could say that what ended up taking place didn’t, I always purpose to be honest, and at the same time can now not only say I more fully understand mental health challenges, and the terrible pain that the family endures, but I know for a fact, that EVERYONE walks through mental illness. EVERYONE. (Yes, that means YOU too!) And as strange as it sounds, I am now grateful God allowed us to walk through that with our child (although it really did feel like hell on earth). I would’ve never been able to say that I could possibly end up being grateful, while we were still walking through it.( And please don’t tell others they’ll be grateful for walking through pain, when they are deeply entrenched in that desperate place). God is good…but walking through a nervous breakdown with your young child is desperately heartbreaking. I believe God was using us to help untold numbers of people, as He showed us that EVERYONE goes in and out of mental illness throughout their lives. So I hope this helps you, and someone you love!
How can I say EVERYONE walks through mental illness? Because mental illness encompasses a huge spectrum, and is caused by a wide variety of things, including long-term lack of sleep, viral, bacterial, fungal, or parasitic infections in the brain or nervous system, long-term negative thinking, or focusing on emotional pain, as well as the horrors of walking through traumatic events (and how an individual processes those events). Furthermore, mental illness or a nervous breakdown can befall anyone when other biological functions are coming together all at once, such as large hormonal fluctuations during puberty, low BMI, extreme stress, overworking the mind/brain (not getting enough rest), and being challenged by atypical neurological issues to begin with. Any one or more of these situations can cause a nervous breakdown. Atypical neurological issues can include, but are not limited to: anyone who has used drugs, or alcohol (we are all unique individuals, and all have different thresholds and sensitivities to those toxic chemicals), children whose moms used drugs or alcohol during pregnancy, were neglected, abused or traumatized at any point before or after birth, having multiple concussions or impacts on the structure of the brain, or severe brain injuries, Autism, vaccine injured individuals, etc… Individuals with atypical neurological issues, alongside any of the previously listed reasons, can create a perfect storm for a nervous breakdown. But absolutely everyone ends up suffering through mental and emotional ups and downs…it’s painful, it’s imbalanced, and it is like wounds you cannot see. Look hard enough, or think hard enough, and if you are honest with yourself, you’ll find times you’ve started getting on or riding that train!
Not all mental illness events end up as a full blown nervous breakdown, and many mental illness events are short lived. Simply put, mental illness is any mental imbalance, where perception is askew from physical reality. Mental illness can be brought on when the pain and anguish of our thoughts are just too much to bear. Mental illness is no different than physical illness…whereas in physical illness we may be able to pinpoint a wound, pain, or physical abnormality, mental illness is a wound, pain or abnormality in our thinking processes, which cannot be seen or pinpointed physically.
“You gotta have the bad days so you can love the good days more.”
So that’s the good and bad news. Mental illness is experienced by everyone at some time in their lives, and often multiple times. It is on a very wide spectrum, from mild depression and anxiety, to severe cases of complete breaks from reality.
Too many people won’t freely talk about it, and yet virtually everyone suffers through it to some extent! The number one comment we received from all hospital staff: “This happens ALL the time.” I remember thinking: “EXCUSE ME? ALL the time? Why doesn’t anyone say anything?” Of course, you know the answer: No one wants to be known as “CRAZY”… but it’s time to change how we view mental health and wellness. The shame, guilt, and ridiculous fear stops here! And if you are sitting there saying “Not me”, you can get off that pretty quickly, by just thinking back at any point in your life, where you got stuck thinking things that were wholly unproductive, brought you down, or upset you beyond what is healthy. When you were unreasonable, unfocused, or hyper-focused on negativity, when you had a hard time turning off the non-stop negative self-talk, when you couldn’t forgive someone, or when you couldn’t sleep, or felt complete lack of rest, when you picked up a completely unhealthy and/or destructive habit, yet were unwilling to put it down, even as it was costing you everything…and those are but a few examples of self-imposed mental illness (which we enter into without intending to), and do not encompass the many ways other biological functions and illness contribute to the suffering of the mind.
No one really knows how the mind works, not even the so-called mental health experts…counselors, psychiatrists, and psychologists are all doing their very best, receiving training from what is able to be observed, and from what the clients themselves are reporting back. But if and when they are honest, current traditional medicine doesn’t really have a grasp on, or an answer to this widespread issue. How could they? The mind is not a physical thing…it’s inner workings and pathways cannot be observed, seen, or known, and everyone is a unique individual, who processes things in a billion different ways. The only thing that can be seen is the voice/information and behavior that a client actually chooses to share: and that’s coming from a place of imbalance, pain, and a broken perspective.
Since the 1980’s the “answer” seemed to revolve around mood-altering drugs, and anti-psychotics of many kinds. However, these do absolutely nothing to heal the mind…
in fact, studies have revealed that these medications alter the brain, and the side effects are often destructive and cause further unspeakable pain, especially long-term.
~Dr. Caroline Leaf, Neuroscientist
However, new and exciting discoveries have been at the forefront, through the study of Neuroscience that do not look to medications, but instead help the body rebuild the mind to get vibrant, strong and healthy! I won’t bore you with the details but here is what you MUST know: NO MENTAL HEALTH CONDITION HAS TO BE LONG TERM; The mind actually builds the brain (what you think about matters): every experience you have, every moment of every day, is building neural connections! (or destroying them) One year from now, your brain will be COMPLETELY different, based on what you have focused on through thought, and all your senses. What you eat, matters! In fact, every sense you have is instrumental in the recovery and rebuilding of the mind, and you can change the brain and mind to end up in a better place than ever before! That includes neuro-atypical challenges. For every individual the continuing optimal level is different, but no matter what the issue, it absolutely can look different one year from now, and each year thereafter.
Specific colors, sounds/music, love and kindness, tastes (foods), smells (in aromatherapy, molecules travel up the olfactory nerve and go directly into the brain), and touch are all healing to the mind! If you want to change, if you want to get better, there are amazing resources to help you get to a place of mental and emotional wellness. The opposite is also true, though: if you are not careful, if you refuse to get rest, take care of your body, and use your senses for your well-being, those same senses can take you to mental illness. The biggest question you have to ask yourself is: do you want to get well? If the answer is “Yes”, or “Yes” for a loved one who is beyond able to help himself, because he has already stepped over the line of rational thought and reality, there are wonderful resources to help heal the mind. Rule out any physical illness issues that may be affecting the mind, such as virus, bacterial, fungal, or parasitic infections, and then start working on mental wellness through all of your senses! I will share what we did, that changed everything.
While I’m typing up a list of resources, here is the first doctor who gave us hope:
Dr. Caroline Leaf, Neuroscientist extraordinaire, and founder of the Integrated Mind Network. Find her information by going to: www.DrLeaf.com