When I became a mother, I intentionally chose to have one child. I knew I wouldn’t have the patience, the equanimity, the tolerance for pettiness to sort out the perpetual “That’s not fair! She has more!” stuff that happens daily with two or more children. Call me selfish, or call me someone who knows her limits.
Now I find myself with two children, so to speak. One is this blog, Galloping Mind, which I started in April 2011. The other is a blog I started six weeks ago, Beautiful Minds, for my new job as director of GROW at the Mental Health Association in Greensboro (MHAG).
Like any mother, I love both of my children equally. Galloping Mind represents my passion for horses, and Beautiful Minds captures the people, events, and news associated with mental health recovery. I’m equally passionate on the latter subject, especially since I’m in recovery myself and know both sides of it, as both patient and counselor.
My job interview at MHAG was the first where I openly mentioned my diagnosis of bipolar disorder—and it served as a job qualification. As my father is fond of saying, “What a world!” I get to spend my days among people who don’t wear public masks, speak their truths, and can’t help but show their vulnerability. I love it when one or another plops into my office chair and asks for a reference for a psychiatrist or wants to know how my horse is doing. Once a week I teach creative writing to students at MHAG’s Wellness Academy, and their written words blow me away. They come straight from the heart.
I love my job so much it reminds me of Steve Martin’s catchphrase: “But the most amazing thing to me is I get paid for doing this!” My latest project is putting together a peer conference that will be a fusion of drumming, music, art, writing, and storytelling. If I could bring horses into it, I would.
I promise that from here on out I’ll keep my children separate, but I wanted to be honest with readers: I do have two blogs, and I love them both. I’m not two-timing you, just stretching myself in new ways.