A Taste of My Life Full of Blessings

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Hello Dear Readers.  I have to admit I am starting out today’s blog with a bit of a blank mind.  When I started blogging, I had a lot of great ideas to write down but as time passed I narrowed my focus a little more, until being at where I am now where I want to mostly write about mental health issues.  In some ways that has made things easier and in some harder.  Anyone who hasn’t read my favorite book, “Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance” I suggest that they go and get a copy.  The book is about so many things, from teaching to thinking, to philosophizing, to managing a mental health issue in a family that goes across generations.  In one part the author was talking about teaching writing and had told students to write about a building and few of them were able to write anything.  Then he told them to write about one wall, then one row of bricks, then one brick and when he had narrowed it down enough the words started to come.

I am hoping this apparent wisdom works because in a few short weeks I am going to be teaching my first writing class.  The class is focused on people with mental illnesses, but is open to the public.  Anyone in the Edmonton area interested in attending feel free to contact me and I will give you details.  My email is as always, viking3082000@yahoo.com

So I am going to try and take people who have never published anything and maybe written a few poems or a story and I am going to try in one month to get at least one or two of them published in some smaller local papers.  More if I can of course.  There is this one student named Benson who is young and seems to have a great deal of potential.  He is kind of fascinating to watch because once we were given a writing assignment and he picked up his phone and appeared to be texting.  I felt a bit ticked off at this, it seemed rude, but then when we were asked to read our work here he came with a beautiful piece of writing that he had typed into his phone.  Things sure are changing.  Although I am very computer literate, I still like to start all of my work with pen and paper, then be able to edit not only as I re-read the work, but as I transfer it to my computer.

All that aside, things really seem to be going well.  I had a long and grueling week.  Yesterday I went to a nursing college and gave two talks for the Schizophrenia Society to a group of nursing students.  I really wanted to engage these people and make my talk a success, so when it came time for the question and answer period, I wouldn’t let people sit and not ask or say anything.  I asked for a show of hands as to who wanted to work in the mental health field and what their motivations were and people really opened up.  One young woman was actually moved to tears talking about a person in their family that had Bipolar Disorder who died and a young man talked about a sister he had who once went of her medication for a long time and I ended up asking him questions.  It really is rewarding work and I honestly feel like I’m making a difference.

It is really kind of refreshing to make a difference.  I am hoping I can make a difference for this young man Benson, I have already loaned him some poetry books to study and I honestly think with some prompting he can go far.  With some of the other people in the class, I don’t know how much I can do for them other than empower them to express themselves, but that may be enough.  I know for a fact that there is one person who used to come to the group who has been paid to publicly display his work, something that I have been trying and hoping to do for some time.

Well, I suppose that will make this a short blog for now.  I wrote a poem in my Wellness Recovery Action Plan class and I thought I would share it under today’s photo, so don’t forget to scroll down.  For the last blog entry I made, I got a very nice comment from someone, I would appreciate any comments anyone has, and if any of you are suffering and need help, or even just need to talk to someone who has been through a lot and done well for themselves, please don’t hesitate to contact me, as always, viking3082000@yahoo.com

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Making a Differerence

 

On my journey through this dark, stark land

It seems so many need me to lend a hand

I wish I could give my all to each and every one

Take them to a feast and fest on the beach and in the sun

 

But sadly it seems there are too many here

It touches my heart, makes me shed a tear

They smell, they’re shaggy, dirty, disabled

They ask for things that would only enable

 

One time I bought ten loaves of bread and a little meat

Even some cigarettes just for a special treat

I passed them out but didn’t feed the masses

I wanted to navigate the pearly gates’ passes

 

Is the only thing that I can do is take up my pen

I do have a heart for this women and men

Cruel people laugh at them and tell them ‘get a job’

But all those that hire workers think they’re slobs

 

Even the washrooms post signs to keep the homeless out

And if they go in anyway people scream and shout

Maybe if enough people came together and took someone in

Right now it seems to me their indifference is a sin

 

Soon there would be no more lonely, sickly poor

And acts of kindness would open closed doors

One day we could make it so all have food and clothes

They will never get them now the way it goes

 

Open your heart and mind and try

Ask why not instead of asking why

So many people need your kindness

So many out there are lost and homeless

 

Can you give a little, life will give so much back

Rethink your fear and change your tack

It’s isn’t resources that we lack

It’s not a case of white and black

 

It’s the union of all women and men

Let the world begin again

Share your love and learn to care

The way life is going it just isn’t fair

 

 

Leif N. Gregersen

May 16, 2015

 

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