. . . Because every picture has a story to tell.
Thank you for visiting. I think you will find my blog posts as varied as my photographic and personal interests--a few of which I hope also appeal you. - Tammy Russell-Rice CPP

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Laughter IS the Best Medicine - Thank You Robin Williams

A good read for your next mental health day
With the news of Robin William's death, the internet is a buzz with commentary on mental health, specifically depression in society.

In her new book Reinventing Normal-How Choice and Change Shape Our Lives, Licensed Marriage & Family Therapist and Best-Selling Author Darlene Cross includes a chapter on diagnosing depression (by the same name) where she notes "many people battling depression are winning the fight today, but most do not do it alone." Unfortunately, there often is a stigma associated with mental health issues of any kind, and most of us will avoid the subject altogether until it hits us in the face which is what happened when Robin Williams took his own life.

When asked to comment on this issue, Ms. Cross said, "Rarely in all the years of my practice have I seen anything impact people as profoundly as the death of Robin Williams. While the public voiced an inability to comprehend the level of despair William’s must have been experiencing, some of these individuals understood it too well and instead questioned how others could not."
About now, you are likely asking yourself what in the world does this have to do with photography? My response to that is: plenty! As fellow photographer and blogger Kate Caudillo stated in a recent post titled Mindset, "Your belief system, and your mindset effect how you do everything. They are what infuse your actions with passion and purpose, and that is what leads to effectiveness. Every day you need to be working on YOU." And that means your mental well-being--no matter who you are or what you do.

So, I recently purchased and read Reinventing Normal--and not just because I created the portrait of the author on the back cover. And, I must say, the read was more akin to having a conversation over coffee with a friend (skipping from topic to topic) than a therapist. Although, as Ms. Cross points out in the book, "best friends are not therapists." Still, I couldn't help but be tickled by the humor and wit permeating the pages as derived from her own personality and experience as a mental health professional. Chapters including, Santa's Naughty List and Everything I Ever Needed to Know I Learned on My Yoga Mat had me cracking up until tears ran from my eyes.

And as Robin Williams always knew, laughter is the best medicine of all. Thank you for the wake-up call. RIP.

- Tammy