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Showing posts from June, 2023

The End of the Explanation

I don't want to drag this out for a series of extended posts; there's no need to go into the minute details. So I'll wrap up my ongoing mental health journey with this post. After I basically quit writing, I began the work on myself. From 2017 to the middle of 2019, the only things I wrote were 10 minute dramas for our church, and let me tell you, even those were a challenge. But when God gives you a deadline, you don't mess around. There was a real depression that came with the relief of not writing or worrying about writing scripts. Again, if I wasn't writing, what was I doing? I really struggled with this question because we had moved from Ohio to Los Angeles so I could pursue a career in film. Even though I'd written and directed a movie, and sold a script, in my mind that wasn't good enough. I couldn't appreciate all of the great things in my life, and the solid career that I had forged in animation over 18 years. It took some real work: a lot o

The Middle of the Explanation

My second panic attack took place in the middle of my daughter Sophie's high school graduation party. Because one isn't good enough, my body decided to take me on that thrill ride once again. It was June 2017. I'd already started going to therapy once a week, and I also saw a psychiatrist who sat with me for five minutes every couple of months and regulated my new antidepressants. We found a medication that works for me and I no longer walk around as if I have pins under my skin and feel like I've had seven too many cups of coffee. That's the best way to describe my anxiety. Anyway, the panic attack hit while we had guests in the house and Sophie's favorite songs were playing. Without saying anything to my family, I escaped up to our bedroom and closed the door. Luckily, I had started meditating and was able to work through it. When it was all done, I channeled my pride and excitement for Sophie to restore the energy I wanted to celebrate my daughter. At this p

The Beginning of an Explanation

When I dropped off of the Internet, it wasn't meant to be a years long sabbatical. I thought I just needed a break; that I was getting burned out from writing Basement Songs and movie reviews for Something cracked, though, and I couldn't consider writing even in a journal for a very long time. Things changed in the winter of 2017. While driving to pick up Jacob at theater rehearsal, I experienced my first panic attack. It started immediately after he got in the car at the theater and it slowly took over my body for the fifteen minute drive home. My skin became clammy and I felt myself removed from my body. My brain was empty and I wanted to curl up in a ball and cry. I gutted it out until we walked through the front door. Without saying a word, I went upstairs, crawled into bed and got in the fetal position. I just wanted to close my eyes and shut out the world. The next morning I awoke exhausted, as if I'd exercised the previous day. That was the first time

65 Roses Day 2023

The first blog I kept was called "If I Should Fall Behind," and it was meant to track my training for my first marathon, which I ran 20 years ago. Jacob was two at the time and we were living with the shadow of cystic fibrosis over everything we did. You don't have time to be terrorized by the fact that your child's life is in danger because you are doing the day to day things to keep them healthy. Only in the quiet moments - late at night or in your car - does the world crash inward. So much has changed since 2003. Jacob is now on life changing medicine that has given him a "normal" existence. He hasn't be hospitalized since he began the medicine called Tikafta. Before he started taking it, things were getting rocky with his health. We are blessed that the medicine is available for him and that it's working. There are many CF patients for whom the medicine doesn't work, and for them we continue the fight to find a cure. Today is 65 Roses Day.   

Hangin Out

Julie and I are spending the weekend in San Diego, visiting our friends Michelle and Mike. Michelle is the lead pastor at a local Methodist church and Mike works for the postal service. Outside is surprisingly cool and drizzly. This year the weather in Southern California has been  incredibly mellow. I don't want to jinx what we've been experiencing, so I leave it to you to surf the net and find out what the temperatures are like. I credit Michelle for helping strengthen my spirituality, and really for helping Julie and I find the people who've become some of our closest friends in Santa Clarita. Michelle formed a small group (I think) in 2013 that included us and the same folks we now consider family. They are our people. Michelle and Mike moved to San Diego a year ago when she was appointed to lead this church. While we were all very sad to see them go, we were all so proud of her in achieving a goal that she was called to do and that she worked so hard to get. Michelle a