Tag Archive | Death

New Beginnings

?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????  As we have finally reached the new year, you already know what comes with the territory. New Year’s resolutions, including work out goals and a hope to be a better person. What usually follows is the breaking of those resolutions before the close of January. What I propose is something simple- creating a Don’t Bring list. Here are some things you should not bring into the new year if you want a clean slate and a fresh start.

1. Debt- I’m not talking 10Gs in student loans. I’m talking about paying off credit card bills, medical bills, or anything under a grand. Handle that. Whether you set up a payment plan or something. Don’t carry old bills or overdue bills into the new year.

2. Men’s Skinny Jeans- Granted, these shouldn’t have even been made in the first place, but they definitely should not be brought back this year for an encore.

3. Negativity from 2014- Why are you still carrying this baggage? Let it go. If you haven’t dealt with it before, why continue to hang on to it now?

4. Frenemies- Why continue to play nice or pretend to like someone you clearly do not? That just creates negativity, unnecessary drama, and clutter. Stop it and move on.

5. The phrase “turnt up” or any variation- This phase sickens me and needs to be put down for good. Please don’t let it seep into 2015!

6. Using children as pawns- Whether it’s to get back at or with someone, or to punish the child. Let us not forget that children are gifts and were not asked to be created. This past year, so many children made the news because their parent(s) left them unattended in the car, burned them, mutilated them, and so on for whatever so-called reason. These “parents” should’ve considered preventing pregnancy if they were going to ultimately hurt their child(ren). Let’s let 2015 be the year of loving our children or simply not having them if you think you’ll abuse them.

I wish you nothing but the best and truly believe that this is YOUR year. Take care of yourself and your family. Much love and many blessings for 2015!

You Don’t Understand

half  In the wake of Robin Williams’ death, there have been some comments made about suicide that some people just don’t understand. What many don’t get is that depression is a serious illness. It’s not something that you can just turn off and on when it’s convenient for you. It’s not something that you can just snap out of because somebody tells you to be happy. It is a mental illness.

 

Not all people with depression are suicidal. Suicide is not a requirement of depression, it’s a symptom. A person could be depressed but not think about killing themselves. They have feelings of things not being worth it (for example, not getting out of the bed, eating or planning for the future), hopelessness, negative thoughts about themselves, no energy, and so forth. A person who is truly depressed can feel all thirteen or so odd symptoms, or as little as three. If you do experience these things, don’t wait to get help assuming that it’ll work itself out or get better.

 

There are different types of depression, such as situational, atypical, seasonal affective, bipolar, major/clinical, psychotic, and a few others. Not all have the same symptoms. Not all sufferers attempt suicide or have suicidal thoughts. The one thing that I will say about suicide, in relation to those who suffer from depression, is that those who attempt or succeed are not selfish. These people have their reasons for doing it, but I guarantee one of those reasons is that they believe that they are much better off dead. My question is this… would you consider yourself selfish if you knew that I was suffering but you wanted me to live anyways?

 

What you don’t understand is that you don’t truly know what a person is going through when they make an attempt on their life. The constant negative thoughts they deal with in their heads and how they interpret the world is something we could never understand. It’s obvious that the cons outweigh the pros. But accusing those who commit suicide with a mental illness is a low blow. There is always a reason; just because we can’t see it, doesn’t mean that it’s not there.

The Tunnel

depression  Down in the dumps or just ‘sad’ cannot begin to describe a common mental health disease which effects one out of ten adults. Depression is a serious illness that is not taken as seriously as it should. Some believe that it’ll go away on its own. Or, “I’m not talking to no shrink.” Either way, problems don’t get solved and those individuals go undiagnosed, under the radar, or worse, wish for death. There are numerous types and symptoms of the disease.

Types

Major Depression: Clinical, long lasting, and debilitating.

Bipolar Depression: (This seems to be a fad. Not everyone who has mood swings has bipolar depression.). Here you have major ups (known as mania or manic episodes) and major lows (depression) which alternate.

Cyclothymia: Mild version of bipolar disorder.

Dysthymia: Chronic (more than two years), but less severe than Major Depression.

Seasonal Depression (SAD): This begins at the same time each year based on the season.

Postpartum: Depression kicks in usually one month after mothers give birth.

Atypical: Mild depression with bouts of happiness.

Psychotic: A mix of depression and psychotic features (i.e. hallucinations or delusions).

Situational: Basically, if you weren’t experiencing a particular situation, you wouldn’t have depression symptoms (ex. unemployment, health issues, mourning a death).

Symptoms

Overwhelming sadness, withdrawn, mood swings, crying episodes, appetite and sleep changes (too much or too little), suicidal thoughts, giving away possessions, feeling of worthlessness and feeling hopeless, void of feelings, loss of interest in activities, decreased energy. Children and teens may refuse to go to school, claim to have a lot of aches and pains, sulk a lot, or be clingy.

What’s Next

Some people hate taking pills. Some people don’t want to talk. There’s no cure all when it comes to depression. There are many things that you can do, but sitting back and waiting for the chips to fall as they may is not one of them (especially when children and teenagers are taking their own lives due to this disease).

– Talk with a mental health specialist (social worker, psychiatrist, counselor, therapist). That’s what they are trained to do. It is also part of their oath to be nonjudgmental. I know pride is why a lot of people don’t turn to professionals, but when you need help you need help.

– If you don’t talk to a professional, talk to someone who is close. It’s not healthy to keep everything bottled up. And believe it or not, communication is very therapeutic.

– Get prescription anti-depressants. You would have to see a psychiatrist for the prescription (and maybe even a therapist too).

– Don’t go at it alone, especially if you are suicidal. Spend time with family and friends who truly care about your well-being. Being alone at this time in particular is not safe.

-If you know someone who is depressed, don’t ignore the signs. Listen to them, be there, and encourage them to seek professional help (especially if they are suicidal or worse, homicidal). Depression is way deeper than just being sad or grumpy. It’s something to take seriously.

Saving All My Love

I really wasn’t going to do this, but now I feel compelled. {Sigh} After just watching Whitney perform the “Star Spangled Banner” (at the 1991 Super Bowl) and the end of “I Will Always Love You” (at an awards show a couple years ago) on the music channel, I sat in admiration. She sang effortlessly.  Left with a face full of tears, her passing finally hit me. Since Saturday, I’ve noticed that many female singers have been compared to her, such as Mariah Carey, Beyonce, etc. I’m sorry, but there is no comparison whatsoever. Whitney’s powerhouse vocals were beyond incredible and were untouchable. Her strength, her range, her overall pureness of good old fashion raw talent. There is and was no other. Not only was a legend taken from us too soon, but she was also a music icon. I am truly saddened, and hope that she rests in peace as her music lives on and continues to bless us with her authentic gift.

Whitney Elizabeth Houston

August 9th, 1963- February 11th, 2012

Don Cornelius’ Death Overshadowed?

Many were rocked when news hit about Don Cornelius’ passing, especially due to the manner of death. He was only seventy-five years old. To me, that’s like quitting a race when you’re almost at the finish line. But the issue here is not about how he died or the reasons that may surround it, it is the lack of press he received.

I’ll be honest, I get most of my news from AOL (and then I might tune in to channel 7 news), because that’s my primary email provider. When I first saw the news about Cornelius, I saw that his picture was on a side panel. As the hours passed, he stayed on the side. My first thought was, “Oh, it must’ve just happened, or it was from one source. It’ll probably make the headlines in a minute.” And did it? No. You know what did? A singer’s sister overdosed. I had to look her up to see who she was (and who her “famous” brother was) because she’s not even famous! How did Cornelius end up as a side story to this? Reports of her death circulated for days, while Cornelius’s post vanished from the side the next day.

Another recent loss that affected the Hip Hop community was the shocking death of Heavy D, another story that didn’t reach circulation on AOL. This was another side story. I had to dig to find that he did a radio interview that morning, his performance on the BET Hip Hop awards show was his first in fifteen years (which he was very nervous for), and he was recently in London performing a tribute to Michael Jackson.

The night of Cornelius’ passing, I did some research on him too; his life, family, achievements, everything. I know that he was the creator of Soul Train, but what else is his claim to fame?

  • Cornelius started out in the insurance business in the 1950’s.
  • He jumped into broadcasting in 1966 and began his career as a sub DJ, then a sports anchor. Soul Train originated as a local show on WCIU-TV in Chicago in the mid-1960s. Once it reached television, Cornelius was the host from 1971-1993, which widened exposure to black musicians, as well as created opportunities for talented dancers that would presage subsequent television dance programs. Soul Train premiered on August 17th, 1970 and was syndicated in 1971.
  • He had a small number of film roles, most notably as record producer Moe Fuzz in 1988’s Tapeheads.In 1987,
  • Cornelius started the Soul Train Music Awards and the Lady Soul Awards in 1995.

So the moral of the story is… people who have changed history and brought goodness (and entertainment) into people’s lives deserve a lot more than a brief mention of their death.

R.I.P. Don Cornelius         R.I.P. Dwight “Heavy D” Myers