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Lets talk Mental Health Y'all!

Today I’m gonna talk to you about Mental Health…STOP…don’t run away…this applies to EVERYONE. Seriously. Read…it will be well worth your time.

“Mental health is a state of well-being, and we all have it. We might have a mental illness, and we might not. Either way, we can all feel well. We can all have good mental health. “

So what exactly does our Mental Health depend on? It is determined by our sense of Self, Purpose, Belonging, Contribution, Enjoyment and Resilience. I can only speak for myself, but whenever my mental wellbeing is suffering these are the domains, I look at to identify the culprit.

Since sustaining my TBI losing various abilities and my nursing identity I struggle with my sense of self, my purpose, I no longer have a sense of belonging or feel like I contribute to the betterment of society….but despite this I try to live with as much enjoyment as possible and would argue I’m resilient as a mother-fu%*er.

Part of my Enso Bertha pieces are about exploring this disjointed sense of self, purpose, belonging and contribution. Every one of my Encaustic Enso Bertha pieces starts with a need to take the chaos, the hard, the messy and the painful in my world/life/brain and translate it into a series of random lines and circles...circles and lines...and no plan for what goes where.

This series of precise and fragmented lines and circles is the only way I know how to describe how my brain feels nowadays. Before it used to be this intricate network of complex now feels like an incomplete cobbled together network of the remnants of those intricate complex cogs....just doesn't operate and flow the way it used to.

Every time I create an Enso Bertha piece, I am in awe of how the absolute mess of life can inspire the creation of something I consider cathartic...turning life's shit into something distinctly unshitty. Being able to create a painful mass of ink drawings and then heal myself while still leaving the pain exposed by burying the lines in transparent layer clear encaustic medium.

Over the last few years of exploring these themes I’ve found myself shoring up my mental health because I’ve began to redefine my sense of self, explore and try and identify a new purpose, accepted that I now “belong” in a different way and though my contribution footprint is much smaller than it used to be…it is none the less valuable to me. What about you…when was the last time you checked in with your mental health?I encourage you to go have a look at the CMHA website and celebrate Mental Health Week ( May 6th – May 12th) with me. We spend so much dwelling on physical health we forget how priceless mental health is. #getloud

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