Saturday, November 01, 2008

Paying it Forward

I'm not sure if each of the bloggers I follow has seen the movie "Pay it Forward". The basic premise is someone does something that lifts your life up and then it is your responsibility to do something to lift the lives of three other people. Then those three people do something to help three others ad infinitum. I like that idea.

I was thinking this morning about each of the blogs I follow and how important they are to me in so many ways. I would like to share some of my personal feelings about some of the blogs I follow. I can't write about all of them today, but I will try to do a few each week or so. I will start with three today:

1. Letters from the Sanitarium

The predecessor of this blog was titled "Genius of Insanity" (GOI). It was a mixture of political discussion, disccussions about mental health and comments about life in general. The author, Handsome B. Wonderful, AKA James, then split the blog in two: one focusing on politics...now titled: "The Political Junkie", and the other "Letters from the Sanitarium"(LFS). GOI was the first blog I ever read. It was James' blog that inspired me to start a blog of my own.

In Letters from the Sanitarium, James (HBW) writes in a way that makes me want to change the world, accept and sometimes change myself, and challenge the way our societies treat people with mental illnesses. It provides me insight into my own depression, and insight into his disorder: Schizoaffective Disorder.

His writing often reflects or mirrors the way I feel about many things. He is so open about himself and his struggles. It is like sitting in therapy with him. This often helps me recognize my own negative thought patterns. In his writing you can see a man with a sensitive and kind heart, a man who wants to make a difference in the world.

He also writes a beautiful blog about Buddhism, called "The Buddhist Blog" . It is full of anecdotes, conversations, quotations and ideas from a Buddhist perspective. It is gorgeous, eye opening and full of spirituality.

James....you make a difference in my world everytime you post. Thanks.

2. Jcat and the Big Bad Wolf

I met Jcat through comments she made on my blog almost two years ago now. Her and I seemed to struggle with the same chronic depression. I would read her writing and it was proof positive that this was an illness, and it wasn't our fault for being like this.

Jcat is a remarkable woman who, despite her depression, does tons of work for wildlife rehabilitation facilities and works at another job as well. She has a killer sense of humour and clear insight into herself.

Thankfully she has seen some relief from her depression in recent months...I will let her blog explain that:>). I love how honest she is about everything. Her blog is a lesson in not editing yourself; in being who you are at any given moment. Thanks Jcat for helping me learn those lessons and more.

3. The Polar Bear Blog

Polar Bear is a person who struggles and battles with Borderline Personality Disorder. Her blog is passionate, heartfelt and poetic. In reading her blog you not only get a great sense of how difficult it is to live with BPD, but also how a person is often made stronger by their demons.

PB amazes me with her ability to work while desperately ill, with her openness and honesty about what it is like to have BPD, and with her poetic descriptions of living life with this disorder. Her blog is often intensely sad to read, but also many days it is full of hope and a strong will to conquer whatever is thrown at her. You give me hope Polar Bear. Thanks.

8 comments:

Lola Snow said...

I am so stealing this idea! It's a really lovely gesture, I'm thinking I might do one a week too. There are so many well written blogs out there, it's hard to keep up with them all. Especially because each one provides a brand new blogroll to explore!

Lola x

Aqua said...

Hi Lola...steal away. I might try to do one a week too so it remains fun and not overwhelming. Yours will definately be one of them.

Lola Snow said...

Aww shucks! Cheers Aqua, goes w/o saying I'll return the favour. One of my blogger buddies is trying to start up a similar project, but "discovering" a new blog each week, which I think is a nice idea too. Doing a review, and putting together a sort of newbie catalogue. Helping a new blogger get a foot on the ladder.

Lola x

jcat said...

Aww sweetie, thanks for the nice words. And for a good idea too.

Polar Bear said...

Thanks, Aqua, I am extremely humbled by your summary of my blog.

As in your previous post about accepting compliments - I feel the same way too. Ev4ery time someone comments positively about anything about me, I will try to devalue it somehow. I can accept that this is an internalisation of a voice that used to belong to my mom - but it is so very hard to shake it off. So I understand what it is like for you, with a dad as you have described. I hope that little by little, the encouragement and the hope that Dr X instills in you will become louder than the voice of your dad.

Hugs
Polar B.

Tamara said...

Aqua,

What a beautiful post and a beautiful idea. I keep forgetting to get that movie - I am going to do it this week. Can't believe I haven't seen it yet.

Hugs,
Tamara

preciousrock said...

Hi there Aqua,
I was just surfing around checking out some blogs I have never visited and happened upon Vicarious Therapy. I love the movie Pay It Forward and this blog review idea is a great one. Thanks for giving me an intro to some other blogs to check out.

sara said...

Thanks - I hadn't heard of the first two!