Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Half Tiger

I just finished the Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua:

After all the press about this book a 2 years ago, when it came through my library I figured what the hell I'll read it. At the very least it could be an interesting read.   

I was absolutely fascinated. But not in an OMG-this-is-the-way-to-do-things way. More in an... OMFG this woman is insane. I just didn't understand the mindset and culture of the tiger mom and Chinese-style parenting. I thought maybe being half-Chinese I may have some frame of reference, but nope. Before reading this I also thought being half-Chinese, maybe I would go half tiger-mom on my kids when the time comes for me to parent. But the more I read, I realized, there is no half-ing anything when it comes to tiger mom-ing. 

Oh well. so much for that plan.   

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

No Shame

In light of Robin Williams' untimely death, I'm going to "come clean" about my mental health.
I have been taking an anti-depressant for a full year now. The past 10 years I have struggled on and off with depression, and since the spring of 2013 I developed anxiety in addition to my depression.

I caught some breaks here and there in that life calmed down enough that I could breath. I've learned coping methods that weren't alcohol, berating others or thoughts of ways to harm myself. I was incredibly lucky to have support everywhere I turned. And I'm incredibly lucky that I was strong enough for at least one moment to reach out for help, and start fighting the fear, loneliness and emptiness that was my mental health. It took a combination of counseling, support, love, medication and work,  to become healthy again.

Suicide is not selfish, it is tragic.  It is not a ploy for attention, because all I wanted to do was become invisible. I was so ashamed of my mental health. My weakness. The fear my entire world would crash into oblivion and not take me with it, leaving me alone to...I don't even know. At some point, I had to be brave and change the scary landscape I lived in. There wasn't a specific catalyst, but something pushed me to do so. Because it doesn't just "get better." It takes time, and a lot of work to heal.

There will always be moments and triggers that may upset me and set me off, but I cannot control those. I can only control myself. And I will not be shamed, I will not hide from this.

Get. HELP. There is no shame.