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Posts tagged mental health
$upport Survivors by Donating "The Little Book of Affirmations for Survivors" to a Survivor
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On Twitter, I was lamenting about how I wanted to send EVERY survivor “The Little Book of Affirmations for Survivors” a gorgeous zine of 35+ affirmations for fellow survivors I published this month - but also wanted to respect the time, labor, energy, and love I poured into creating this zine by valuing my artwork (and myself.) I put the following dream out into the universe - a way for folks who could afford my zines to get them to survivors:

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One of my friends, Meep, suggested making a “pay it forward” option in my Etsy and then creating a separate waiting list form for survivors to sign up for their very own free copy. I loved her idea, so I turned it into a reality. I created an option for donors on the Etsy listing where customers are asked “Do you want to send this copy to another survivor?” - all they have to do is say “Yes!” and buy it.

Survivors can sign up on a waiting list to receive a free copy and will be notified via e-mail once their zine is in the mail.

Want to support this project? Head on over to my Etsy. Are you a survivor who wants “The Little Book of Affirmations for Survivors”? Fill out the waitlist form now!

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Self-Care is Not Selfish: Reflections from ALA Annual 2019

This year, I was able to attend ALA Annual for the first time. I learned a lot from the workshops, panels, and sessions I attended but one of the most salient and crucial for me was on self-care. This was the first session I attended and set the tone for the rest of my conference.

The panel was “Self-Care is Not Selfish: Preventing Burnout,” presented by Emily Clasper, Janie Hermann, Djaz Zulida, Carson Block, and Kyle Courtney. I also want to give a shout-out to Sarah Houghton who couldn’t be there in person but graciously recorded a video for us!

As a disabled person who is chronically ill and believes in interdependence, community care, and anti-capitalism as a way to dismantle the systemic issues which create the need for much of our self-care, I am very critical of a lot of self-care discourse. However, this panel also highlighted the importance taking care of each other. When reflecting on my conference experience, I kept thinking back to how this panel - so I created a zine based on what I learned and questions it raised for me, grounded in the practice of radical vulnerability.

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In this zine, I talk about the power of no, navigating ALA Annual events held at bars as a person in recovery, creating space for others to share their stories, what it means to be "healthy" as a chronically ill person and including disabled people in self-care, and what self-care is. I also discuss the power of community care and collective change in addressing the systemic issues that create the need for self-care, interdependence, how we can show up for each other at work, recognizing/preventing burnout, and the importance of knowing your local resources.

This zine was originally created for my Cornell colleagues who couldn’t attend ALA Annual this year but if you’d like a color copy, I’d be happy to send one to you in exchange for $3 for postage. Please e-mail me if you’re interested!

CFP: LIS Interrupted: intersections of mental illness and library work

From Library Juice:

Call for Chapter Proposals
Working Title: LIS Interrupted: intersections of mental illness and library work
Editors: Miranda Dube and Carrie Wade
Submission Deadline: March 31st, 2018
Publisher: Library Juice Press

Book Description

LIS Interrupted addresses the experiences of library workers with mental illnesses. Too often conversations about mental illness are pushed to the sidelines, whispered about behind office doors, or covered up for others’ comfort. This book draws these conversations into public view and in doing so brings the experiences of mental illness to the forefront, offering space for comfort, connection, and community. The intention of this work is to provide a collection of both personal narratives and critical analyses of mental illness in the LIS field. This offers a unique opportunity to explore the many intersections with labor, culture, stigma, race, ability, identity, gender, and much more to provide context for positive change. LIS Interrupted is geared towards library workers and students in a variety of environments.

Possible topics include but are not limited to the following:

Section One: Personal Narratives of Mental Illness
This section will focus on exploring the first-hand narratives of library and information workers who experience mental illness in their lives as it relates to their work. Possible topics include:
• Neurodevelopmental Disorders
• Schizophrenia Spectrum Disorders
• Bipolar and Related Disorders
• Depressive and Anxiety Disorders (including postpartum depression/anxiety)
• Obsessive-Compulsive and Related Disorders
• Dissociative Disorders
• Feeding and Eating Disorders
• Substance-Related and Addictive Disorders
• Personality Disorders
• Non-neurotypical experiences

Section Two: Critical Analysis of Mental Illness and LIS
This section will center the role of mental illness and its many intersections with library work and education. Possible topics include:
• Mental illness and labor expectations
• Postpartum depression and maternity leave
• Reference services and mental illness
• Collection development/ LC and/or Dewey classification schemes and mental illness stigma
• Mental illness and critical disability studies
• Workplace advocacy for mental illness
• Mental illness acceptance through performed whiteness
• Mental illness as disability
• Accessibility services in Graduate School
• Mental Illness and the LIS job search
• Library design and mental illness
• Historical discourses of Librarianship, gender, and mental illness

Timeline
• CFP distributed:
• Deadline for Chapter Proposals: March 31, 2019
• Notification of Accepted Chapter Proposals: April 19, 2019
• First drafts due: August 2, 2019
• First draft reviewer feedback returned: September 3, 2019
• Final drafts due: November 15, 2019
• Final draft submission review: November 16, 2019- December 10, 2019
• Submission of final manuscript: January 1, 2020

Submissions
Please email abstracts of up to 500 words to LISInterrupted (at) gmail (dot) com in a .docx or .pdf format, along with a short author bio.

Abstracts should state whether you would like your work published as a personal narrative or critical analysis—while the editors acknowledge that there might be some overlap between personal narrative and critical exploration, we would prefer authors to identify their work on their own terms. Authors interested in publishing in section one who wish to use a pseudonym should include this in their proposal. You are welcome to submit multiple abstracts about different possible topics. If your submission is tentatively accepted, the editors may request modifications. Previously published materials will not be accepted.

Final chapters will be in the 2000-5000-word range and formatted in Chicago Style.

Please direct any questions to Miranda Dube or Carrie Wade, editors, at mirandaldube (at) gmail (dot) com or carriethewade (at) gmail (dot) com.

About the Editors

Miranda Dube is a Reference and Instruction Adjunct Faculty Librarian at the University of New Hampshire at Manchester. She received her BA in Communication Arts from the University of New Hampshire at Manchester and her MLIS from the University of Rhode Island. Her research interests include library services to domestic violence and sexual assault survivors, as well as mental illness, and addiction in the LIS profession.

Carrie Wade is the Health Sciences librarian at the University of WIsconsin Milwaukee and a backpacking subject specialist at REI in Brookfield, Wisconsin. Her research interests focus on analyzing historical discourses in Library and Information Science and other fields as a means to plot out a more just, equitable, and liberated future for libraries and the people who work in them.

A Tarot Spread for Healing

I recently did a tarot spread for healing from Ultimate Tarot with my Slutist deck.  The spread was incredibly validating, affirming, and revealing.

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The first card I drew (bottom center) is the Prince (or Knight) of Cups and reveals the greatest emotional block / trauma / issue from my past.  The Prince of Cups represents romance & charm; a lover who swept you off your feet (and leaves just in time to break your tender, femme, heart); and/or when your life was so chaotic and intense that you were too sensitive to get involved with someone. This really resonates with me, as a survivor of sexual & interpersonal violences.  I have wanted to enter the dating & kink & relationship world again, to engage with my sexuality in healing & sustainable fashions, but felt unable to because of my trauma history. 

The second card I drew (bottom left) is the Three of Cups which represents how my emotional block has affected my past relationships.  This card is about friendship and community, something I’ve struggled with since I was raped six years ago. My trauma has made connection difficult and thus, so has been receiving the the love, support and compassion I have needed to heal.

The third card I drew (bottom right) is the Seven of Cups which reveals how my emotional block is affecting my present relationships, as well as how it is affecting my personal growth. The Seven of Cups is associated with fantasy, imagination, wishful thinking, and illusion.  I interpret this card to mean that my emotional block is affecting my ability to imagine new futures, new possibilities, and new endings for my story (as well as new friendships; friendships that are built on love, care, and sustainability).

The fourth card I drew (middle left) is the World which reveals what new things can be learned from the current exploration of your hidden emotional blocks. The World is associated with completion, accomplishment, and integration. While i have endured challenges and profound trauma, I have also gained immense strength, great wisdom, and experiences that have transformed me into the gentle, compassionate, fierce, and genuine femme I am today. My past has taught me the importance of showing up, interdependence, and supporting my family, friends, and communities. The things I once needed are what I now offer to those I share solidarity with because our struggles are all intimately connected.

The fifth card I drew (middle right) is the Crone (otherwise known as the Hermit) which gives suggestions and advice as to what might be done, emotional or otherwise, to get past your own personal blocks & encourage healthy emotional growth.  The Crone generally represents soul-searching, being alone, inner guidance, and introspection. I believe this card is telling me that the path to get past my personal blocks and to encourage healthy emotional growth is to spend more time with / by myself, to engage in introspection, focus inward, and look for the answers I need. I have everything i need within myself already to move past my traumas.

The sixth card I drew (top) is the Nine of Cups which examines the spiritual lesson that can be learned from the current exploration of your hidden emotional blocks. The Nine of Cups represents completion, personal integrity, and the final stage of development. It is a sign that I have paved my own way on the path to success. This card also refers to the strengthening of relationships, something I need to continue to work on. It also shows that happiness, joy, and abundance are well within my grasp (in fact, I probably already have them and now I need to take the time to enjoy life, to feel my emotions, and see the wonder all around me - not just the pain). 

I highly recommend using this spread if you are interested in exploring your healing process and emotional blocks. Another fantastic spread is the I Believe You: A Tarot Spread for Femme Survivors by Poplar Rose.  

Do you use tarot as a part of your healing process?