For the lack of a better term I am using “Mental Issue,” M.I. for short, as a blanket term to describe what we have and deal with on a daily basis. I want to use “Issue” because I don’t want to call it an “Illness.”

Illness, to me anyway, implies that it can be cured, it’s something that you caught and didn’t have before. It’s a part of us, it’s in our DNA, and it’s something we didn’t choose to have but something we live with on a daily basis.

When our M.I. kicks in it’s called “An Episode.” An Episode of what? Are we a sitcom or drama that people sit back and watch? While it may certainly feel this way for non M.I.s, for those of us going through said “episode” it feels more like a storm. Comes on with little to no warning. A lot of huffing and puffing, with loud crashes of thunder. For this reason I will refer to them as Storms and not “Episodes.”

By talking we can begin healing and understanding on both
sides. Ask questions and listen to the answers, don’t judge, don’t speak, just listen.

Saturday, May 27, 2017


I have started a campaign, FREE HUGS for Mental Health awareness. I have buttons, key chains, and soon, shirts with the same FREE HUGS picture. The FREE HUGS lets people know that I will give anyone a hug who may need one, nothing needs to be said; you don’t even have to ask, just hug the hurt away. Hugs is how we recharge and heal.
FREE HUGS has been around for a while, it is sometimes joked about but I’m trying to turn it into something very serious. You never know when a hug can save a life, as I personally found out. One day while I was downtown taking pictures I seen a man who I could feel needed a hug, so I hugged him, without asking or saying anything, and he, much to my surprise, hugged me back, long and hard. I could feel the negative energy draining out of him. I was not going to let go until he let go.
When he did finally did let go he walked away without a word and I continued taking pictures. Two years later I seen the same man, who gave me a hug this time and thanked me. It turns out that he was planning to commit suicide that day and my hug let him know that he was not alone, that a total stranger cares. That got me right in the feels.
So now I try to raise awareness for Mental Health issues, letting people know that they are not alone by any means. I myself have bipolar and depression, as does my daughter. We are tired of hiding from the fear that comes from the stigma of not understanding what someone with Mental Health issues goes through.
We try to bridge the gap between those who have it and those who do not. Not everyone can express how they feel inside, and for that they feel lost, even myself from time to time.
This website, Lost Inside, is dedicated to those who wish to express themselves but can’t. For those who have not found the courage to know, you can find it here. To search no longer for the words you need to survive the great battle within.
My goal is to heal the world through laughter and always, FREE HUGS.
I am doing a walk this October for Mental Health awareness. By bringing light to the subject and letting others know that they truly are not alone we can save lives. Please copy and paste, email, or share this with anyone you know who has Mental Health issues. If you would like one a button, key chain, or sticker please email me,


Saturday, May 13, 2017


Your soul doesn't need me,
As it once did.
Your healing is
Nearly complete.
I'm so proud of you,
Standing tall,
On your own two feet.
You are amazing,
Soon you won't need me at all.
Never more,
Will you fall.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

My Why

I was asked why do I try to raise awareness for those with mental health issues by giving free hugs.  My answer to giving away free hugs is because you never know when a hug may save a life, which is true, but I was pressed for a more deeper answer.
So, why do I do it?  Because too many people do not understand what it is we go through, even ourselves.  We are afraid to tell anyone how we feel because once we do our feelings becomes real. As long as we keep it locked away inside we can continue to lie to ourselves and say that everything is fine.
We are afraid of being looked at differently, like an animal in a zoo, locked away because someone uses a word they truly don't understand, like crazy.
Because there are those trapped inside themselves and do not know how to escape.  I know, I am one of those people.  By raising awareness perhaps there is a chance that we can just live.