Blog for Mental Health – 2013

Like the Apostle Paul,  A Way With Words has been many things to many people (so that some may be saved).

It actually started as Will Write for Food (and maybe dental), a way to present a portfolio of my writing for prospective employers.

As it became A Way With Words, the focus expanded to creative work – essays, reviews, poems, and short stories.

As I move toward the completion of a working draft of my spiritual memoir – Delight in Disorder: Meditations from a Bipolar Mind, it has become a way for me to reach out to others with mental illnesses (as well as address mental health issues in the broader public).

This past week, I’ve made a good many new blogging friends.  One of these, Bradley of How Is Bradley has inspired me to join the growing movement of bloggers promoting mental health.  To this end, I place my right hand on my Grandmother’s Bible and say –

I pledge my commitment to the Blog For Mental Health 2013 Project.  I will blog about mental health topics not only for myself, but for others.  By displaying this badge, I show my pride, dedication, and acceptance for mental health.  I use this to promote mental health education in the struggle to erase stigma.

A Canvas of the Minds tells the story of the launching of the movement – here.  There, she explains the terms –

1) Take the pledge by copying and pasting the following into a post featuring “Blog for Mental Health 2013″. (quote above)

2) Link back to the person who pledged you.  (see Bradley above)

3) Write a short biography of your mental health, and what this means to you. (below)

4) Pledge five others, and be sure to let them know! (bottom)

Short bio:

I was born crazier than a loon.  I come by it honestly.  There are many loony limbs in my family tree. 

I started self-medication at an early age, with the help of my parents’ friends who put beer in my bottle and laughed at the two-year old toddling tipsy to the turf.

I was able to escape the loud voices in my mind (and coming from my parents’ bedroom) by playing basketball and reading books.  I was driven to succeed in sports and studies which helped carry me through my sophomore year of college, when I turned to various illicit drugs to produce a chemical composition in my brain with which I could live.

After college, I began a journey of recovery (dispensing with one drug at a time) until I was left to face my demons alone.  That’s when all hell broke loose.

I was treated with second-generation anti-depressants until one of them induced a psychotic episode and I was, more appropriately, diagnosed with Bipolar.

With the aid of various psychotropics, counseling, much prayer, and a loving family, I was able to not only survive but thrive, functioning 18 years as a parish pastor.  Recently, however, I have gone on disability and separated from my wife.  I am now pursuing a second career as a writer and educator.

Blogging is itself an exercise toward mental health for me and writing about my life, I often touch on mental health issues.  This does not mean I will use my readers as my therapists (I can’t afford more), but I will hopefully build more positive relations with folks like me who struggle with mental illness and give folks who don’t a better glimpse of what we can be.

Pledge five others (5 bloggers I follow you should check out)

timEbush : Art. Life. Writing. Channeled messages.

TeaTart : Loving, Laughing, Crying – and Writing About It All.

Mercurial Runner

Unexpected Midlife Freedom! : Lover of books, reading, writing, and the pursuit of dreams.

Alexis Stone : Seeing in the dark.

For a list of bloggers participating in the movement, click – here.

11 thoughts on “Blog for Mental Health – 2013

  1. Like the Apostle Paul, A Way With Words has been many things to many people (so that some may be saved) It’s funny Tony, I was noticing the changes in your blog and thinking exactly the same thing. Sometimes our suffering is not just for our benefit, but so that we can be a blessing to others when they know without doubt that we understand where they are – what they have been going through. God bless the work!

    • Thank you so much for faithfully following my blog (through its many manifestations). One of these days, I’ll settle down, find a niche/a genre and make boatloads of money. For now, I’ll just write for the chosen few who read and try to get better at what I’m doing. For God’s sake.

  2. Glad you joined in an took the plunge. I think this is going to be a great way to make many new mental health blogging friends.

  3. Tony,
    Thank you for visiting Human In Recovery and for pledging to Bloggers for Mental Health 2013. I look forward to reading more and sharing the journey.

    Blogging has been my DIY path to improving my mental health and reconnecting with people. I think it has helped save my life and restore a semblance of sanity.


  4. Hi Tony,

    Thank you for visiting my blog earlier – as someone fairly new to the blogosphere, it’s heartening when other bloggers reach out and connect with you. I’m looking forward to having a sneaky glance through your archives – I’ve liked what I’ve read so far!

    All the best,


  5. Tony, thank you so much for sharing of yourself and pledging your commitment. Together we really all can help make each other stronger in our journey, not by using each other as therapists, like you say, but just by being supportive friends. Thank you also for spreading the word about our campaign, which your readers, if they haven’t already looked into, can find all the details about here: Blog For Mental Health 2013 | A Canvas Of The Minds.

    I’m sorry I’ve been so long in responding, I was traveling, but I’ve added you to the blogroll and shared out your post through our social media. I wish you all the best in what is to come for you!

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