Sherlock Holmes

“My mind rebels at stagnation. Give me problems, give me work, give me the most abstruse cryptogram or the most intricate analysis, and I am in my own proper atmosphere… I abhor the dull routine of existence. I crave for mental exaltation.”

If you have yet to take the time to read any of the Sherlock Holmes stories then shame on you, just kidding… kind of.  The mind of Mr. Holmes is a fantastic world that has so much vitality it will make you look at the world in a whole new way.   His vision will make you question everything, or if his intelligence causes your head to spin as it often does to mine then you can find a friend in Dr. Watson, because he is nearly always astounded (and often annoyed) by Holmes’ abilities.

Word Value

Effect vs Affect

Many people have problems deciding which one to use in a sentence, myself included. Effect and Affect have many definitions, as most words do these days, but the definitions I’m most familiar with made me wonder about how we use these words.

Specifically, effect means the consequence of an action (cause and effect), while affect means, among other things, to pretend or to assume (to affect an accent you don’t have).

Knowing these definitions I wonder why we use the word affection to mean that we have feelings for someone. Psychologically we should have “effection” for someone, because we feel emotions for them due to their actions. To have affection for someone makes it seem as though we are putting a fake emotion forward, using it as a facade. Perhaps that is why the definition for affection as a mode of showing love is considered archaic.  Yet I know people (again including me) who use it still today.

Consider your words.

Stigma Surrounding Bipolar Disorder

I recently realized that many people have the wrong impression of Bipolar Disorder.  It is often seen as an excuse or even a lie on one side of the spectrum,  and on the other it terrifies people into believing that no one is safe around someone Bipolar.

My sister-in-law helped me to realize this when my husband told her that we don’t plan to have children of our own.  She got angry with him and said “Yeah,  your wife would probably just go all Bipolar and drown them in the tub.”

Now for those of you familiar with psychology or law this might ring a bell.  Andrea Yates drowned her five children in their tub.  However,  it was more due to postpartum psychosis than Bipolar Disorder.  Either way I consider what my sister-in-law said to be highly uncalled for.

I’m now on medication that helps me keep my moods in check,  but I went for nearly five years without it.  Partly because of my own concerns about it,  but largely because of how my controlling boyfriend (now ex)  felt about all pills,  but especially anti depressants.  If anyone has doubts about medication they should talk to their doctor,  but I’m also willing to discuss the pros and cons that I have personally experienced since starting my medication.

Now back to topic.  I’ve felt the stigma surrounding Bipolar Disorder in my family,  amongst friends,  classmates and even my old college roommate.  People tend to draw back when they find out I’m “mentally unstable.” You can see the gears going in their heads as they start to wonder how safe I am to be around.

It is my belief that I and others like me ought to do our best to combat this stigma with honesty.  Yes,  Bipolar disorder is an incredibly difficult thing to live with,  but we’re letting it get the best of us and hide us in a corner when we allow it to scare people away.   Sometimes nothing can be done,  but often opportunities for enlightenment surround us every day.

When you hear someone talking down or assuming something untrue about Bipolar disorder or any other disorder for that matter, politely correct them.

Ignorance keeps us in dark corners.  Truth sheds light,  one person at a time.

Things I Hate

an incomplete list

  • anticlimactic books
  • writer’s block
  • depression
  • sleeplessness
  • secrets
  • cancer
  • paper cuts
  • cutting my hair when I want it to grow
  • memories (certain ones)
  • not having enough time to read
  • not being able to go on an adventure whenever I want
  • diabetes

Looking for Alaska and Censorship

I thought I’d start out by saying what preconceived notions I started the book with. Firstly, I have loved every John Green book I have ever read. Secondly, having watched the lecture I know that Looking for Alaska has been one of the most banned books for years. Basically I knew I was going to love this book before I opened it. And I was right, because I connected with it in a ton of ways.

My first year of high school I attended Mansfield HS so that my brother could finish out his high school career there. My family and I came to call Mansfield a vortex, and not in a good way. It sucked so many teenagers in and lots died because of it. The high school had a total of about 300 students. I lost friends. Will, Paige, Cheyenne, Temper, Pruitt, Hannah. Four of them died in car accidents, one died from a drug overdose, and another from cancer. At the next high school I attended we lost at least three students.

Parents like to believe that being a teenager is a bright happy-go-lucky time in life, but all too often that isn’t the case. Most of us aren’t like Alaska, but we know someone like her and a lot of us have lost someone like her. With books like this it reinforces the idea that drinking and driving has horrible consequences and that when someone is in pain emotionally it can lead to horrible things. I still need books like this to help me understand emotional difficulties and it would’ve helped if more books like this were available to me when I was growing up. What adults need to understand and remember is that teenagers are just people who are going through the most horrible things in life for the first time.

Teens are going to have sex that doesn’t mean that they can’t be safe about it. My mom was always more understanding than my dad. My parents were guilty of the usual double standard, boys can have sex and girls can’t . However my mom’s ability to talk to me about important things meant that I knew long before I ever had sex that I needed to be careful not only about STD’s and pregnancy but also about who I was becoming emotionally involved with. Most people who try to censor books are under the misguided belief that if you don’t talk about something horrible it can’t or didn’t happen, but in reality it’s going to happen anyway and that is why it must be discussed. It’s books like this that allow students to begin that dialogue with themselves and with their parents.