Visionary (June 29, 2017)

Writing last month’s blog was like pulling an infant tight to my chest and running through a minefield. 

I did it. 

What’s precious to me, miraculously, remained unscathed. 

In fact, the outpouring of support and empathy infused the hidden parts of me with truth serum. 

I began perceiving what life might be like if I weren’t split. One half, presentable. The other half unruly and desperate to see the light of day. I needed to tell the truth. 

I could have a trunk show of the things I’ve lied about for fear of being powerful. 

That’s what I learned as a girl—to keep embarrassing things a secret, keep my weirdness under wraps and give people the benefit of the doubt. 

Here I am, living like a 40-year-old little girl and a lot is not right. 

I think visionaries are those people who sense wholeness when something’s broken and let nothing break stride in actualizing it. 

This is the face of a 40-year-old little girl becoming a visionary. 

Let’s talk about vision. 

I believe at the very root of mental illness is a break with perception. Unable to count on my mind to recognize love, care & compassion, instead I perceive fear, indifference & judgment in everything & everyone. I feel like a target in a world poised and ready to fire. When this state is prolonged, I want to end things. 

It’s incredibly important to know that if you are feeling this way, please get help immediately. Emergency room staff are trained to make your safety a priority. Spending time in the hospital or an outpatient program can help to restore balance to your mind, body & spirit. Your life is precious. Ask for help. 

In 2010 I had a hospitalization that saved my life. Withering away from anorexia nervosa and deluded by voices (auditory hallucinations) that told me food & people were dangerous, I hit my lowest bottom. My mom delivered a manifesto. “You were born at Saint Francis Hospital,” she said, “now Saint Francis Hospital is going to bring you back to life.” 

That’s what happened. 

In my lowest moment, I managed to do one thing: agree with my mom. 

It was contagious. 

I agreed to go to the ER. I agreed to go on an IV drip. I agreed to be admitted to the psych ward. I agreed to take psych meds. I agreed to tell the truth. I agreed to live even though I couldn’t perceive a future for myself. 

Sometimes being a visionary requires a trek through the darkness. 

After my weeks-long hospital stay, here’s what happened: I put on healthy weight. I smiled more. I began dating a friend who would later become my husband. I enrolled at Central Connecticut State University. My guitar and I recommenced our love affair. My friends, The Kelvins, got me to play my first public concert in years. 

I still suffered from mental health issues like depression, hallucinations & PTSD. But they coexisted with my emerging visionary heart. As I reentered life, I quickly learned to be ashamed of the former. I hid these parts of me while mistaking accomplishments, growing income & marriage for wholeness. 

I'm learning that the brick and mortar of a house is not a home without people inhabiting its rooms. 

Welcome shame. 

Welcome vulnerability. 

Welcome oddness. 

Welcome truth. 

These are the perceptual gifts for which this visionary has been waiting. 

I’d like to share this with you: 

Music For A Loving World is the soundtrack to my visionary heart. It’s an album of ten songs that speak to wholeness in all its complexity. This 3-min video entertains and informs all about the crowdfunding campaign I’ve launched in support of this new music. #Standtogether with me and consider changing mental health stigma. Your contribution matters! Click below... 

Music For A Loving World 

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Your comments are welcome! 

Truly, Kate

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