Death of a Sibling

The death of my brother (Aaron Thaler) was devastating.

I was a few weeks shy of 3 years old when Aaron was born, so he was a part of my life for as long as I can remember.

My father was in the Army and we grew up overseas.  I didn’t really get to know my extended family until I was a teenager and I never had the same friend for more than a couple of years.

That made my relationship with Aaron even more special.  He was that one person I was able to play with and fight with, all throughout my childhood years.  He was my only consistent friend.

We had our ups and downs together.  Many battles were fought and a lot of blood was spilt.  However, no grudges were held.  After a few days, we would laugh about the last fight as if it was all a game.

Aaron died suddenly and I spent the first month in a state of shock.  Eventually the reality hit me and I went into a deep state of depression.

It’s been five years since Aaron passed, but I will always miss my brother.

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Major Depression Feels Like….

Major depression feels like:

  • You are drowning and you reach up for help, but no-one is there.
  • You have to act calm on the outside, but inside you are screaming in agony.
  • You are trapped in a cage and you are pacing back and forth like an animal.
  • You have a pressure cooker inside your body and it is about to explode.
  • You are alone in the world, because you are unable to connect to people.  You cannot relate to them and they cannot relate to you.
  • There’s a dark cloud looming over you.
  • There’s a monster inside of you and it is crushing your soul.

Project Semicolon – Raising Awareness

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Project Semicolon was started to raise awareness of how mental illnesses can create havoc in a person’s life and lead to suicide or suicidal ideations.  It was designed to function as an anti-suicide initiative.

The semicolon is used in a sentence when the sentence could have ended, but the author decided to continue the sentence.  You are the author and the sentence is your life, so don’t end your sentence prematurely.

 

 

Adjustment Disorder by J.B. Snow

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This book was rather interesting and educational.  It was easy to read and easy to understand.

The main points are:

  • Adjustment disorder is the inability to cope with a life stressor.
  • Risk for developing adjustment disorder increases for those with sensory sensitivity, genetic predisposition, or have experienced any type of trauma.
  • The following can help when dealing with adjustment disorder:  building a support system, deep breathing exercises, medication, therapy, life skills training, healthy diet, plenty of sleep, exercising, and journaling.

Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus

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The book, Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus, was written by Dr. John Gray.  It was published in the 1990’s, and is still popular today.

To be honest, I didn’t like the book.  I found it to be stereotypical and redundant.  The aspect that bothered me the most was the repetitiveness of each concept.  I felt like I was reading the same information in each chapter, with only a slight variation in wording.

Have you read this book?  What did you think about it?

Fragile X Fragile Hope (Parenting a Special Needs Child)

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I learned a lot from reading “Fragile X Fragile Hope” by Elizabeth Griffin and also found it to be inspirational.  Her son, Zach, is intellectually disabled and displays autistic features, which was caused by Fragile X syndrome.

Elizabeth Griffin talks about the medical ramifications that cause her son to struggle in daily life.  For example, Zach’s stress hormones are heightened whenever he experiences a stressor.  Also, those chemicals will remain active in the brain much longer than normal.  As a result, he struggles to remain calm during normal daily events.

Elizabeth Griffin also discusses her feelings of desperation, guilt, and grief.  She gives an honest portrayal of those emotions and how they affected her life.  Support groups became essential, so she could work through those feelings and thoughts without fear of judgement.

There is section about navigating the maze of available services.  She discovered some treatments were a waste of time and money, but others were extremely beneficial.  Therefore, it is important to fully investigate your options and the services offered.

I recommend this book to anyone with a special needs child.  It is also beneficial to people who want to gain a better understand of the struggles faced by parents with disabled children.