Link to Ecwid

Why we do what we do

It was not too long ago that I woke up one morning and said to Robert, "Baby, I think I wanna start a blog". Still relishing his sweet slumber, Robert partially opened one eye and said, "Okay, baby". Of course, I had to share with him all my thoughts and why I came up with this brilliant plan and...wait, what am I gonna blog about?

That question lead to me grabbing pen and paper and brainstorming to figure out what I know best and what I could possibly blog about. Then it came to me: duh, Mental Illness. I am very familiar with this topic. I have many years of experience with it. But then I thought: wouldn't it be cool for us both to blog about this? After all, Robert and I are a team. #couplegoals

Like I normally do when I don't know how to do something, I research it... and by research I mean I called our Uncle Mark. He knows everything! We called and put him on speaker and my quick question turned into a 3-hour conversation packed with excitement and more questions and more answers. It was awesome! We were going to start our own business (again) and I would blog and make things and Robert would sell them and we would make enough money to pay all our bills and Robert would never have to work again!

Working hard on our website
Working Hard

"it was a lot of work"

That was towards the end of May, yes, five months ago. We did all the basics: setting up a website, domain name, email addresses, sales license. I was sewing and making things and we were promoting ourselves on social media. I was blogging and trying to figure out how much to share and what to keep private but still be a help to our readers. It was a lot of work. And then it happened...

Well, actually, nothing really happened. It seemed like we were non-existent. We met up with roadblock after roadblock. We got blocked and labeled spam. We were discouraged and felt like giving up. This is way too hard and we are too old to be doing all this stuff anyway. What are we doing??

And then one day we get a comment on our blog thanking us for sharing our story. I was shocked and giddy at the same time - we have a Reader! Then another day we got another comment. That Reader shared with us her story about her Mental Illness and how her husband is such a great support system for her. We were humbled that someone trusted us enough to open up to us. It was wonderful. One day in the local Walmart, a woman and her husband complimented me. She then opened up to me that she too has had Mental Illness. I gave her our business card and to my surprise, that brief encounter lead to her emailing me. She wanted to reach out to us to have another avenue of expression and to meet more people like her. Isn't that awesome?

Stopping to take time to help a friend
Taking time to help a friend

"focus. breathe. you're okay"

I've had friends call me while they were in the middle of an Anxiety/Panic attack. The fact that they chose to call me during this most difficult time just to hear a friendly calm voice is so special. Though miles and miles away, I can stay on the phone with them until they feel better or get to where they can receive medical attention. I can remind them that this moment is temporary and they are strong enough to deal with this. I can tell them that it's okay to feel scared or nervous or any other emotion they are feeling, just as long as they stay in the present. Focus. Breathe. You're okay, I'm here, you're not alone.

We've stated from the onset that we are NOT medical professionals. We simply blog about our experience living with mental Illness. If our experience can help someone else, even just one person, then we're good with that.

"they trust our brand"

So we may not be able to sell our products on social media, even though we would love to. We may be blocked and labeled as spam, even though we clearly are not. We may never be that popular on Instagram. And we may only have a handful of Readers. But, you know what? That's okay. We're patient and we value our handful of Readers because they trust our brand. They see that we are real and we care.

And that's why we do what we do...

⇒Hello Reader, we're curious: Tell us about a time you were a support to someone in the comments below.

Rob's perspective - Conclusion

Enjoy a Protein Packed Salad anytime
Delicious Salads
Our first step was to focus on diet and exercise. Our Uncle Mark gave us information about reducing sulphates commonly found in certain foods and alcoholic beverages. Arlene did a lot of research and was lead to read a book entitled, "Eat Right 4 Your Type". This book worked for her. It helped her to understand how certain foods were not only bad for her body but also her blood type. She found out that gluten contributes to inflammation, pain and gastrointestinal issues as well as many other things. So she greatly reduced her gluten intake. We looked for gluten free products and incorporated more salads in our diet. I wasn't a big fan of salads, but Arlene's salads are so delicious and packed with protein that I became hooked on them.  

"low-impact exercises"

Rob and Arlene enjoy their biking routine
Biking Routine
We also increased our exercise routine. It's easy to say you're going to do something like "I'm gonna exercise EVERY day" however, it's better to choose something that you can continue to do. For us it is biking and walking. These low-impact exercises are easy on our joints especially because we're no spring chickens. 

"the benefits of essential oils"

Sample of Essential Oils from Young Living
Essential Oils sample
Arlene researched about the benefits of using Essential Oils. Lavender oil helps calm her anxiety and helps her insomnia. Mixed with Peppermint oil, this helps with her migraines. Grapefruit oil is a nice appetite suppressant. There are a host of other oils. Recently, we were sent a lovely sample packet through Young Living. You can click here to request your Free Sample!

From the onset and throughout the years, we have made many adjustments from medications to lifestyle improvements. While it's not easy, we carefully select our diet and have increased our exercise. There is definitely a difference if we slip up a bit. We try very hard to avoid stressful situations, or at least to deal with them in a positive way. We also strive to be very understanding and patient with one another. It requires a great deal of sacrifice again and again.

"she is not cured"

We take time to enjoy the hobbies that Arlene and I find relaxing, such as Sewing and Jewelry Making. Eventually, through implementing those lifestyle changes as well as adding vital Vitamin and Mineral Supplements, Arlene improved and our quality of life got better. The amount of medications reduced to an as-needed basis. She's not cured, but she is able to better manage her illnesses.

We even decided to move to the midwest since the kids were all grown and we wanted a quieter life. Here we enjoy the beautiful scenery of the sky touching the ground. It's so picturesque! A clear night sky gleams with brilliant twinkling stars, the sunsets that beckon your attention as you drive for miles on the long Kansas roads and the friendly people always wave a greeting and speak politely. What's not to like here?

⇒Hello Reader, we're curious: Tell us what lifestyle improvements you've made in the comments below.

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