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Disconnecting for a Connection

What is disconnecting? Is it when you detach with love? Terminating a relationship? Isolating yourself? Unplugging an electrical device? Is it rejection? Not having a bond with something or someone?

Many times, people assume that someone who is disconnected find themselves in a difficult and challenging place to be. This can definitely be true, but what if disconnecting can be healthy and form a different connection?

When I have felt disconnected to the people, places, and things that help me stay sane, I start to get pretty down. I start feeling each of my insecurities creep into my mind and heart to convince me that I either don’t deserve the connection, or that it’s lost because of me.

Being disconnected can be very dangerous for my recovery and overall wellness – mentally and physically – however, it can also be extremely helpful, when used the right way; when I disconnect in order to connect.

One way I do this is by going to the beach and I shut out my thoughts and ground myself by using all of my senses to connect with the beach. I’ll disconnect my phone, my racing thoughts, my rapid heart rate, my loved ones, my responsibilities and allow myself to be vulnerable so I can connect to the calmness that the beach brings me. When I do this often, I’m able to balance the other connections in my life and have the strength to mend the disconnections in my life that I’m unhappy about.

Another way I’ve been disconnecting to connect is by getting to a quiet place, getting on my knees, and closing my eyes to start praying. I’m disconnecting any distraction so that I can build my spiritual connection. When I do this, I’m able to stabilize my emotions and welcome healing.

I’ve also been disconnecting electronics. I have been actually for once turning my phone on complete silence – no vibrate, nothing. When I do this, I’m able to enjoy the moment I’m in and be more in that moment. Sometimes, the moment is simply being alone. Sometimes I disconnect with others because I’m taking time for self-care. I’ve been realizing lately how important self-care really is.

This tool that I’ve learned and put into practice has had amazing benefits:
-the symptoms of my anxiety and ptsd have been more manageable
-I am able to take full advantage of EMDR Therapy
-My self-advocacy skills have increased tremendously
-I feel more empowered
-I feel confident in my ability to say no
-tasks are less pressuring and overwhelming

How will you disconnect to build a connection? What does that look like for you?

Every Three Weeks We Have a 9/11

chasing the dragon panel

Last night I had the opportunity to share my story on a panel alongside some incredible people! We had shown the film, “Chasing the Dragon” and had a discussion afterwards.

The audience consisted of nursing students from St. Vincent’s College and St. Vincent’s Hospital in Bridgeport, CT. They were all SO interested about the topic of opioid abuse and they were passionate to be part of the solution!

As grateful as I was to be a part of this panel and provide vital resources that these nurses needed, I was SHOCKED when I heard a comment that another panelist said.

“Every three weeks we have a 9/11”

Meaning, every three weeks, the amount of overdose deaths are equivalent to the amount of deaths that occurred on 9/11/01

I’ve heard and experienced so much regarding addiction and the opioid crisis, so something never shocks me. However, this one did.

Maybe it was because I remember 9/11 and the horror of it.

Also, I thought it was kind of interesting. When 9/11 happened, so many resources were created and became available for family members of victims and preventative strategies.

I feel like for the opioid crisis, there is still so much more this country (both citizens and government) can do to tackle this epidemic.

I did realize some similarities though.

STIGMA AND DISCRIMINATION, Both with the opioid crisis and with 9/11. People judged and made assumptions that anyone from the Mid-East were a terrorist or supported terrorism. In the opioid epidemic, people judge addicts, people in recovery, and family members.

Another similarity I noticed was that memorials were made. I’m seeing a lot of remembrance quilts, vigils, and walks throughout the country. The same things happened for the victims of 9/11.

This fact that the panelist said hurt me because HOW IS THAT FACT STILL NOT ENOUGH TO DECLARE A NATIONAL EMERGENCY?!

Anyways, I would love to know your thoughts on what I heard.

I’ve included an article about this statement and trailer of “Chasing the Dragon”

Every Three Weeks