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A New Chapter

Hi TurningPointCT  Welcome to the next chapter!

I haven’t been on here in some time, so I think you’re all due for an update! I have some new blogs on the way, so stay tuned for my normal style of writing.

So it was a bit of a bittersweet good-bye to my position at TurningPointCT… I’m still involved, but I’ve ventured onto a new chapter! I am now the Recovery Liaison for Recovery Network of Programs (RNP). RNP has 19 different programs and several levels of care for people seeking recovery for addiction and/or mental health disorders.

What’s really cool about my new job is that I’m the first of this project that I am a part of. RNP partnered with Optimus Health Care to bring more services to their clients and patients. Basically, I’m mainly stationed at one of the Optimus Health Care locations and when a patient comes into the facility to receive general medical care, they are given a set of questions and depending on their answers, I get involved. Once someone indicates that they are in need of either mental health care and/or substance abuse treatment, I engage them and try to get them enrolled in treatment.

It’s really exciting because I have so much flexibility with my job role. RNP supports the involvement I have with CT and local communities, so they are encouraging me to still do public speaking and be on committees and whatnot. One thing I love about RNP is that the leadership are inspirational women that have had a huge impact on my life, as well as members of my family. Sometimes I get to bounce around to other agencies and site locations and spread the news about our new “Primary Integrative Care Team” aka the PIC Team 🙂 So if you see me all around Bridgeport – I promise I’m there for good reasons 🙂

But here’s a little secret: I was once a patient at RNP. I used many of their services throughout my active addiction years and still utilize their services. I went from being a patient to an employee! A blog on that is in the making!

So that’s an update on my professional life. My personal life has had some major changes as well:

1. I moved into an apartment with my best friend Jen earlier this summer!
2. I graduated college – check out the blog on that here
3. I changed churches & am shifting my spirituality pathway- stay tuned for a blog on that
4. I found out I’m not as weak as I thought I was

Wait, can we just go back to number 4 … I found out I’m not as weak as I thought I was.

This summer, I’ve learned that the weak, broken, bruised woman I thought I still was; is not me. Since so many big changes happened in such a short time, my mental health was starting to be neglected. I was becoming so absorbed in everything and I had quickly labeled myself as some awful things. I couldn’t be happy for myself because I was allowing other people, places, and things be the decision-maker of my emotions and thoughts. For someone living with PTSD, having no control is one of the worst feelings and can trigger a spiral in my thinking process.

So long story short, it bubbled to the surface and the only word of defense I was able to come up with was: No.

Little did I realize, this was going to be the beginning of using a word I was afraid to use my entire life.

Once I saw that I CAN say no, it was a ripple effect. I was “no this” and “no that” for everything. E V E R Y T H I N G.

It felt so empowering. I felt in control. I felt peace. It started off with little things, then the big things came. I said no to men. I said no to helping someone when I mentally couldn’t. I said no to pushing myself when I knew it wasn’t safe to keep pushing. I said no to plans that I couldn’t uphold. And ready for this… I said no to things that I simply just DIDN’T FEEL LIKE DOING.

I may seem cold, but it was the best way that I felt I could shake my fears and insecurities and start becoming my own woman.

So anyway, that is some updates for now. I’ll be posting some cute apartment pictures soon! Jen and I living together is literally a constant sleepover with my best friend. Plus, Luca basically lives with us too, so it’s nice always having them with me. There’s never a moment that we aren’t laughing – or eating lol

I love you all and to the one that’s reading this that is struggling at saying ‘no’ — start with small, manageable things and then keep going– you will be surprised how it will create a ripple effect. I hope you all keep watch for my upcoming blogs about: my new spiritual path, becoming an employee at a place I was a patient, more about my PTSD, and lots more!

<3

Patchwork

Patchwork – This is a collective piece that looks like a quilt of ideas.

Each square is designed by Kim, Val, Shelby, John, and Nanii in 3 minutes.

 

Kim, Val, Shelby, John, and Nanii

Geometric Girl

Geometric Girl – This is a collective piece that became triangle based. Each person added their touch in 3 minutes.

Someone even added in a face!
– Kim, Val, Shelby, John, and Nanii

Menagerie

Menagerie – This collective piece became a menagerie of bugs, fish, food, etc. and in some way it ties together. Who says spiders can’t eat carrots?

-Shelby, John, Nanii, Kim, and Val

Flip Me Upside Down

Flip Me Upside Down – This is a collective art piece completed by the young adult group.

Each artist contributed their own artistic talent to the picture, submitting their own touch to the piece in 3 minutes. This piece is called “Flip Me Upside Down” because the original artist started by drawing trees and hills, but the other artist turn the hills into trees.

Look from both angles and see the full image.
-John, Nanii, Kim, Val, and Shelby

Anti-LGBT Counseling

If you have been following the news since lately, you would have probably noticed a string of anti-gay laws popping up around the country, which gets really scary for LGBT people living in states like Tennessee, Colorado, Mississippi, North Carolina and so forth…

Not to say that here in the ‘north’ (in Massachusetts and Connecticut for example) it’s all well and hunky-dory.

Of course we get our own share of antigay hate in our schools and supermarkets, at gas stations, in public parks and in communities that are so homophobic you would probably think that you are in another country.

But the new laws that we are now learning about puts LGBT people in a very peculiar place… you are neither safe from the general public nor the government.

One of the most heartless bills that has been proposed and that also targets young adults comes out of Tennessee…

Here… if you are LGBT, a therapist can refuse to provide counseling to you.

Now, I don’t know which is more devastating…
…the ordeal of coming out to someone who means judgement, who has no regards for your feelings and who refuses to even consider you for counseling
Or
…Knowing that you were denied service because something ‘might’ be wrong with you, an idea which your own government agrees with

In the first place, LGBT people who feel victimized would rather not speak to anyone… if a single therapist or the rest of society denies their value as human beings, then its best if they keep their true feelings to themselves.

…That doesn’t help the kid who is being bullied in school, by his parents or by his church… instead it forces him to find a very quiet room, where he begins to have negative thoughts, that could very well lead him to hurting himself.

Should that bill gets signed by the governor in Tennessee, more religious conservatives could get their way in picking what group of people in society they think is normal (taking us back many years)
While
Thousands of LGBT youth are being shun from the counseling and therapy that they need.

What good does that do?

I’ve met people here in Connecticut who still aren’t sure where to go to school or where to live. Their whole lives turn out to be a political message or a constant riot.

In North Carolina you could be told to leave a bathroom because you just don’t fit in or in Atlanta, a store owner could shut you out of his store…

But regardless of what’s happening in the South, I still think that hate is anti-American… we just need to reunite, rethink and begin to understand that we are all people who cry, bleed and sweat the same.