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November 21, 2013

Each Mind Matters

*I participated in a campaign on behalf of Mom Central Consulting for the California Mental Health Services Authority. I received a promotional item as a thank you for participating.

I have been selected to participate in Each Mind Matters Ambassador Program, this month, I will be highlighting the awareness for Mental Illness and Mental Health Challenges surrounding the holiday season. As we spend time with our families this holiday season to share memories, stories of hardship or triumphs, it is important to reflect and remind ourselves what we are most thankful for.

This year, I am thankful for my husband and my kids. They keep me grounded and I could not imagine a life without them in it. I am also thankful for my friends who are so kind, supportive and loving. I am so lucky to have them!

During the holiday season, we spend a lot of time with our extended family. Besides participating in all sorts of holiday-related activities with our kids, we also get to see families members who we rarely visit. During this time of the year, my kids are especially excited about going to their grandparents' house and eat a lot of yummy food with the entire family.

With so many family meals around the table at my in-law's house during this time of the year, we have discovered this is when we get to catch up on what everyone is up to. We learn the ups and downs that DH's cousins have experienced through out the year. We get hear all about trips our family members took this so far. Most importantly, we get to laugh together! We haven't talk about why we spend holiday time with the extended family members with our kids. Because we have been doing it since before the kids were born, I think they have just come to accept that it is the way things are. My kids would not want to be anywhere else besides spending all of the holidays with their grandparents.

One of the surprising thing for me when I married into my husband's family is that there is everything and anything could be bought up as a topic of discussion at the dinner table. We do talk openly about mental health challenges and mental illness. My father-in-law and mother-in-law have read a lot of different articles and books on mental illness, and so they sometimes would share interesting facts they have learned with us. From our discussions I have learned the important of awareness and having an open mind. 

In the coming months, I will have 2 more posts on the topic of mental health. In the mean time, I encourage you to speak to your families about mental health challenges everyday people face and how we are thankful for the help they are provided to overcome their obstacles. Perhaps you are someone who has been blessed with the help you received, or maybe you someone who was able to offer assistance to someone in need. Speaking about it brings awareness so that more people could be helped, as such, I hope that you will do that today.


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