Wow. I can’t believe that in just under 40 days I will be leaving Cambodia. I’m a little late on the July Enjoyments, but it’s for good reason, which you will find out below!!
Anyway. I’ve tried to absorb as much as I can because I head back to the USA. Here are my favorites for July and please read carefully, there’s some news for yall.
This month I started reading the Harry Potter series over again. My niece, who turned 8 this summer, started to read it and I’m reading it along with her. I’m already planning an epic movie viewing party with her. I forget sometimes how wonderful the Harry Potter books were. It took me about two solid days to read all of the first book.
I haven’t been listening to any one particular artist lately. There are a few songs I’m really enjoying though. A cover of “Under Pressure” performed by My Chemical Romance and The Used, making all my adolescent fantasies come true.
And Gavin Degraw put out a new single called, “She Sets the City on Fire”. It makes me dance. It’s a great jam for the morning as you’re getting ready for work.
Also, I’ve been listening to the “Bored to Death”single from Blink-182. I tell you, the musical part of my brain is being controlled by the 15-21 year old Amos.
My musical tastes are really questionable this month, and I’m not ashamed of it.
I’ve listened to more podcasts this month than I usually do. I listen to them while I’m typing things out, and our offices have been pretty empty with people on appointments.
This month, my favorite podcast has been Nerdist. They talk about Sci-Fi, Comics, Games, and all things really fun. It’s hosted by Chris Hardwick, who used to host “Singled Out”on MTV. He also host “@midnight” on Comedy Central. Needless to say, he’s hilarious. ALSO he was born in my HOMETOWN! Hilarity is in Kentucky soil, yall.
If anyone has any recommendations of some podcasts I have to listen to, please let me know.
Oh…well fancy that..your’s truly got herself a fancy youtube channel. I have been tossing this idea around for a while now, and finally just went ahead and did it. There’s two videos up right now, and I’ll be posting once a week. My goal with this blog and with the channel is to bring an open discussion about mental health, body image, and managing life.
I had resisted the idea of online community and virtual mental health resources, but I have quickly realized that more often than not, people are growing more of a life in the virtual atmosphere. I’ve watched a lot of different youtubers and they are doing amazing things. I was to carve out a place where people can have very open and honest discussions about mental health and all things tied to it.
My body image blogs are usually my most popular, and I am really want to bring more of this conversation to light. Body image has no gender, so I am hoping to bring a lot of different voices to this discussion. In the coming weeks, I have a “round table” of sorts that will go up on the blog with two personal trainers I know and a dietician that I have worked with in the past. Not only to discuss their own journeys to healthy body image, but reactions to our societal idea of beauty, body, and health. More on this later.
I took a weekend getaway to Siem Reap. I have not been on a solo vacation before and it was definitely the recharge I needed. I got to tour the temples on my own, practice my very little Khmer, relax, read, and think. I had put off a trip to Siem Reap because I thought I would be in Cambodia for a bit longer, once I knew that I was leaving, it was the first trip I booked.
It was an incredibly beautiful place. I love exploring old places, and I couldn’t even imagine what the temples looked like when they were new. Angkor Wat is the largest religious monument in the world and it’s dated back to the 12th century. It was originally built as a Hindu temple and then became a Buddhist temple. My favorite though was Angkor Thom. It also dates back to the 12th Century. Tomb Raider was filmed there. It was the most beautiful, I thought. I spent about 2 hours just climbing around it. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ll be able to see more photos.
Like I said under the YouTube portion of this post, there is a new focus for things. There is a massive stigma around meeting mental health needs. We save it for the “crazy”, when therapy is really for everyone. Nothing has to be “wrong” with you because you decided to meet with a therapist. It’s really beneficial to sit down with an unbiased party and discuss things that are going on in your life; thoughts and issues that you don’t feel comfortable just sharing with anyone. Barry, my therapist back in Nashville, was one of the biggest influences in decisions that I made career and personal wise, and I don’t know where I’d be today without him. I have been able to talk frankly and openly about how I was feeling.
I used to lead a group once a month at a teen center in Nashville, and when we were having a discussion one night, one of the guys talked about how a majority of his friends were online. He had just moved to middle Tennessee from New York. He traveled over an hour to get to the group, and he was home-schooled due to bullying. My heart just broke for him, for many reasons. The biggest one though was that even the internet wasn’t a great support for him. Our computer screens have given many people permission to let the most evil of themselves out into the airwaves. I have resisted for quite a while the digital age as a means of finding support and community. I realize though, that this isn't something I can resist anymore. I want to be part of a growing definition and change of digital community and mental health resources.
A few months ago, I had tried to collaborate with people to make something happen, but it didn’t work out the way it was imagined. And I had resisted this idea, because I have always believed that mental health and community exists in interpersonal interaction, but who I am to deny how the world is evolving? Ideas about what community is, is changing. And we are going to have to change how we look at and interact in a therapeutic sense. I want to be part of the discussion, by creating an open and positive discussion.