Advertisement

Lindsay

Super Administrators
  • Content count

    19,496
  • Joined

  • Last visited

About Lindsay

  • Rank
    Forum Super Administrator
  • Birthday November 7

Contact Methods

  • Website URL
    http://depressionforums.org
  • ICQ
    0
  • Skype
    LindsayFL

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Female
  • Location
    Sarasota, Florida
  • Interests
    Antiques, Astrology, painting, collectibles, music, (most genre'), My Poodles, Prince Baci, of Venice and Prince Remy, "That's Our Boy!", The Gulf of Mexico, sand and surf, swimming. Dining and dancing, theater. Widowed.
    My three grown children. TWO darling grandson's (Sam & Max!)
    Sam was born on New Years Day, 2004. Max was born Feb 21, 2009. In Bucks Co PA.
    I have adorable twin granddaughters, born Oct 3rd, 2008, near me in FL!
    Two darling older granddaughters , 15 & 19, (in FL), (a very YOUNG Grandmier, I might add.) DF member since 2001
    I Am Still always Under Construction :coopwink:

Recent Profile Visitors

13,269 profile views
  1. WE’RE all feeling down now the Christmas revels are over, with little to look forward to, a hammered bank account, a bulge around the waist, gloomy weather and a return to work after weeks of partying. These factors all come together in a perfect storm for a single day believed to be the most depressing of the year – ‘Blue Monday’. If you’ve already failed to keep your new year resolution, don’t be too hard on yourself What is Blue Monday? It is calculated using a series of factors in a (not particularly scientific) mathematical formula. The factors are: the weather, debt level (specifically, the difference between debt and our ability to pay), the amount of time since Christmas, time since failing our new year’s resolutions, low motivational levels and the feeling of a need to take charge of the situation. It was originally conceived by a PR company but has now become an annual event. When is Blue Monday? According to the formula (below) Blue Monday 2017 will fall on January 16. Bad luck if it’s your birthday. The date is generally reported as falling on the third Monday in January, but can also on the second or fourth Monday, or even the Monday of the last week of January. The first one was January 24 in 2005.
  2. New Year's Eve

  3. New Water Cooler DF Friends
  4. A New thread for 3 words of the moment. Start! ~Lindsay
  5. A new 3 Words Of The Moment will be started within minutes! ~Lindsay
  6. Seasonal affective disorder treatment: Choosing a light therapy box Light therapy boxes can offer an effective treatment for seasonal affective disorder. Features such as light intensity, safety, cost and style are important considerations. By Mayo Clinic Staff Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is a type of depression that typically occurs each year during fall and winter. Use of a light therapy box can offer relief. But for some people, light therapy may be more effective when combined with another SAD treatment, such as an antidepressant or psychological counseling (psychotherapy). Light therapy boxes for SAD treatment are also known as light boxes, bright light therapy boxes and phototherapy boxes. All light therapy boxes for SAD treatment are designed do the same thing, but one may work better for you than another. Talk with your doctor first It's best to talk with your health care provider about choosing and using a light therapy box. If you're experiencing both SAD and bipolar disorder, the advisability and timing of using a light box should be carefully reviewed with your doctor. Increasing exposure too fast or using the light box for too long each time may induce manic symptoms if you have bipolar disorder. If you have past or current eye problems such as glaucoma, cataracts or eye damage from diabetes, get advice from your eye doctor before starting light therapy. Request an Appointment Find a Doctor Find a Job Give Now Log in to Patient Account Translated Content Espanol Portugues Arabic Mandarin Twitter Facebook Google YouTube Pinterest Patient Care & Health Info Healthy Lifestyle Symptoms A-Z Diseases & Conditions A-Z Tests & Procedures A-Z Drugs & Supplements A-Z Appointments Patient & Visitor Guide Billing & Insurance Patient Online Services Quality CareFind out why Mayo Clinic is the right place for your health care. Make an appointment. Departments & Centers Doctors & Medical Staff Medical Departments & Centers Research Centers & Programs About Mayo Clinic Contact Us Meet the StaffFind a directory of doctors and departments at all Mayo Clinic campuses. Visit now. Research Explore Research Labs Find Clinical Trials Research Faculty Postdoctoral Fellowships Discovery's Edge Magazine Search Publications Training Grant Positions Research and Clinical TrialsSee how Mayo Clinic research and clinical trials advance the science of medicine and improve patient care. Explore now. Education Mayo Graduate School Mayo Medical School Mayo School of Continuous Professional Development Mayo School of Graduate Medical Education Mayo School of Health Sciences Alumni Center Visit Our SchoolsEducators at Mayo Clinic train tomorrow’s leaders to deliver compassionate, high-value, safe patient care. Choose a degree. For Medical Professionals Provider Relations Online Services for Referring Physicians Video Center Publications Continuing Medical Education Mayo Medical Laboratories Professional ServicesExplore Mayo Clinic’s many resources and see jobs available for medical professionals. Get updates. Products & Services Healthy Living Program Sports Medicine Books and more ... Mayo Clinic Health Letter Medical Products Population Health and Wellness Programs Health Plan Administration Medical Laboratory Services Continuing Education for Medical Professionals Giving to Mayo Clinic Give Now Your Impact Frequently Asked Questions Contact Us to Give Give to Mayo ClinicHelp set a new world standard in care for people everywhere. Give now. Diseases and Conditions Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) Print Basics In-Depth Multimedia Resources News From Mayo Clinic Products and services Free E-newsletter Subscribe to Housecall Our general interest e-newsletter keeps you up to date on a wide variety of health topics. Sign up now Understanding a light box A light therapy box mimics outdoor light. Researchers believe this type of light causes a chemical change in the brain that lifts your mood and eases other symptoms of SAD. Generally, the light box should: Provide an exposure to 10,000 lux of light Emit as little UV light as possible References AskMayoExpert. Seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2015. Martensson B, et al. Bright white light therapy in depression: A critical review of the evidence. Journal of Affective Disorders. 2015;182:1. Sanassi LA. Seasonal affective disorder: Is there light at the end of the tunnel? JAAPA. 2014;27:18. Avery D. Seasonal affective disorder: Treatment. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed Feb. 8, 2016. Melrose S. Seasonal affective disorder: An overview of assessment and treatment approaches. Depression Research and Treatment. 2015;2015:1. http://www.hindawi.com/journals/drt/2015/178564/. Accessed Feb. 8, 2016. Kurlansik SL, et al. Seasonal affective disorder. American Family Physician. 2012;86:1037. Hall-Flavin DK (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Feb. 15, 2016. Typical recommendations include using the light box: Within the first hour of waking up in the morning For about 20 to 30 minutes At a distance of about 16 to 24 inches (41 to 61 centimeters) from the face With eyes open, but not looking directly at the light Light boxes are designed to be safe and effective, but they aren't approved or regulated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for SAD treatment, so it's important to understand your options. You can buy a light box without a prescription. Your doctor may recommend a specific light box, but most health insurance plans do not cover the cost. What to consider Here are some questions to think about when buying a light box for seasonal affective disorder: Is it made specifically to treat SAD? If not, it may not help your depression. Some light therapy lamps are designed for skin disorders — not for SAD. Lamps used for skin disorders primarily emit ultraviolet (UV) light and could damage your eyes if used incorrectly. Light boxes used to treat SAD should filter out most or all UV light. How bright is it? Light boxes produce different intensities of light. Brighter boxes will require less time to use each day, compared with dimmer boxes, to achieve the same effect. Typically the recommended intensity of light is 10,000 lux. How much UV light does it release? Light boxes for SAD should be designed to filter out most or all UV light. Contact the manufacturer for safety information if you have questions. Can it cause eye damage? Some light boxes include features designed to protect the eyes. Make sure the light box filters out most or all UV light to avoid damaging your eyes. Ask your eye doctor for advice on choosing a light box if you have eye problems such as glaucoma, cataracts or eye damage from diabetes. Is it the style you need? Light boxes come in different shapes and sizes, with varied features. Some look like upright lamps, while others are small and rectangular. The effectiveness of a light box depends on daily use, so buy one that's convenient for you. Can you put it in the right location? Think about where you'll want to place your light box and what you might do during its use, such as reading. Check the manufacturer's instructions, so you receive the right amount of light at the proper distance. Talk to your health care professional about light box options and recommendations, so you get one that's best suited to your needs. Previous Share Tweet March 16, 2016
  7. Welcome to Depressionforums, GO, We will be here to listen as we are a very caring, supportive community. You will see that and make wonderful frieds and support members yourself someday. Look around and read as there is a plethora of materials to glean from! Take care of you..you are important! & Hugs, ~Lindsay
  8. I agree Tungsten, I was just about to close it. Thank you! Members, Please read the rules of this Religious & Depression Forum! ~Lindsay There is MORE! Read them!
  9. Report post Welcome back Riverlight 2 people like this Quote Edit Options Do not wait for extraordinary circumstances to do good; try to use ordinary situations. - Jean Paul Richter Democracy no longer works for the poor if politicians treat them as a separate race - Frank Field RiverLight Gold Member Gold Member 6,764 1,863 posts Gender:Female Location:Northeast USA (IP: 50.189.9.94) · Posted 4 hours ago · Report post Aw, thanks so much, hocico! That is so sweet of you!! 1 person likes this Quote Edit Options Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging. Life will always be sorrowful. We can't change it, but we can change our attitude toward it. Life is without meaning. You bring the meaning to it. Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will burn out the pain. - Joseph Campbell Healing doesn't mean the damage never existed. It means the damage no longer controls our lives. - InspiringQuotes.in Loving yourself is the greatest gift you can give yourself. Self-love brings healing, strength, enlightenment, and attracts true love. - Made up quote by RiverLight salparadise6132 Gold Member Gold Member 8,171 1,812 posts Gender:Male Location:Toronto, Ontario (IP: 74.14.221.13) · Posted 4 hours ago · Report post Hugs my friend. Sending you good thoughts. It will lift. Remember that!!! 1 person likes this Quote Edit Options Don't cry now. Don't you cry. Dry your eyes on the wind. La da da da. Searchingforasoul Silver Member Silver Member 1,305 783 posts Gender:Male Location:Here, there and nowhere (IP: 93.106.126.155) · Posted 4 hours ago · Report post I felt that!! Feeling better all ready. All the best, Sal! 1 person likes this Quote Edit Options ladysmurf Gold Member Gold Member 1,768 1,395 posts Gender:Female Location:U.S.A -- NYC (IP: 146.115.170.166) · Posted 3 hours ago · Report post Welcome girl... 4 people like this Quote Edit Options Until you make peace with who you are, you'll never be content with what you have Support: RiverLight Gold Member Gold Member 6,764 1,863 posts Gender:Female Location:Northeast USA (IP: 50.189.9.94) · Posted 3 hours ago · Report post Aw, thanks Lady! Great to see you again! =) =) HUGS!!!! 1 person likes this Quote Edit Options Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging. Life will always be sorrowful. We can't change it, but we can change our attitude toward it. Life is without meaning. You bring the meaning to it. Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will burn out the pain. - Joseph Campbell Healing doesn't mean the damage never existed. It means the damage no longer controls our lives. - InspiringQuotes.in Loving yourself is the greatest gift you can give yourself. Self-love brings healing, strength, enlightenment, and attracts true love. - Made up quote by RiverLight RiverLight Gold Member Gold Member 6,764 1,863 posts Gender:Female Location:Northeast USA (IP: 50.189.9.94) · Posted 2 hours ago · Report post I have two goals for today: to eat something, a real meal and to try to get some work done. I haven't done an ounce of work in two weeks because of emotional upheaval. So my goal today is to eat and try and work at least just a little bit.. I'm not going to say I can work a full day yet, but I will at least try to make a dent in my projects. I have serious senior-itis right now with most of myself 90% out the door... so hard to motivate. Plus I realized that I truly love someone, someone new in my life, but I can accept friendship because that's all he can give. Wishing everyone here well today. 2 people like this Quote Edit Options Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging. Life will always be sorrowful. We can't change it, but we can change our attitude toward it. Life is without meaning. You bring the meaning to it. Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will burn out the pain. - Joseph Campbell Healing doesn't mean the damage never existed. It means the damage no longer controls our lives. - InspiringQuotes.in Loving yourself is the greatest gift you can give yourself. Self-love brings healing, strength, enlightenment, and attracts true love. - Made up quote by RiverLight hocico Platinum Member Platinum Member 2,607 3,636 posts Gender:Male Location:Angleterre (IP: 93.93.219.240) · Posted 2 hours ago · Report post Wishing you well too River, sounds like two achieveable goals, what are you thinking of making? I know how you feel about being snowed under with work and lacking the motivation, make a start as best you can. P.S The words aren't really coming very well for me today, but it is good to see you back on here ((hugs)) 2 people like this Quote Edit Options Do not wait for extraordinary circumstances to do good; try to use ordinary situations. - Jean Paul Richter Democracy no longer works for the poor if politicians treat them as a separate race - Frank Field RiverLight Gold Member Gold Member 6,764 1,863 posts Gender:Female Location:Northeast USA (IP: 50.189.9.94) · Posted 2 hours ago · Report post Your words are coming out just fine! HUGS! I ate two pieces of cheese this morning so far.... I think I may be back to the old ways, but I will force myself to eat a sandwich. Right now I am just drinking water which fills me up. I haven't done any work yet today but opened a new spreadsheet for my project! LOL..... Lordy, am I bad... motivate motivate! Instead I'm sitting in chat, LOL. Quote Edit Options Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging. Life will always be sorrowful. We can't change it, but we can change our attitude toward it. Life is without meaning. You bring the meaning to it. Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will burn out the pain. - Joseph Campbell Healing doesn't mean the damage never existed. It means the damage no longer controls our lives. - InspiringQuotes.in Loving yourself is the greatest gift you can give yourself. Self-love brings healing, strength, enlightenment, and attracts true love. - Made up quote by RiverLight ladysmurf Gold Member Gold Member 1,768 1,395 posts Gender:Female Location:U.S.A -- NYC (IP: 146.115.170.166) · Posted 50 minutes ago · Report post I ordered Chinese food its the only thing that makes me happy anymore hahah 3 people like this Quote Edit Options Until you make peace with who you are, you'll never be content with what you have Support: feeling_lost Advanced Member Advanced Member 556 295 posts Gender: (IP: 88.195.217.108) · Posted 45 minutes ago · Report post Enjoy! <3 2 people like this Quote Edit Options "Too often we underestimate the power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring, all of which have the potential to turn a life around." -Leo Buscaglia "The essential things in life are seen not with the eyes, but with the heart." -Antoine de Saint-Exupéry RiverLight Gold Member Gold Member 6,764 1,863 posts Gender:Female Location:Northeast USA (IP: 50.189.9.94) · Posted 40 minutes ago · Report post Oh good! I'm glad u have something that makes you happy! =) Enjoy and bon appetite! I am going to force myself to eat a sandwich now.. 2 people like this Quote Edit Options Opportunities to find deeper powers within ourselves come when life seems most challenging. Life will always be sorrowful. We can't change it, but we can change our attitude toward it. Life is without meaning. You bring the meaning to it. Find a place inside where there's joy, and the joy will burn out the pain. - Joseph Campbell Healing doesn't mean the damage never existed. It means the damage no longer controls our lives. - InspiringQuotes.in Loving yourself is the greatest gift you can give yourself. Self-love brings healing, strength, enlightenment, and attracts true love. - Made up quote by RiverLight
  10. Hi Members! It's time for a new "How Do You Feel Right Now?" Topic. Some posts from the last thread are below.... Let's hear it! ~Lindsay
  11. Dear Lindsay

    I see that Duck has posted in the forum few hours ago. I guess his ban is lifted. 

    Please disregard my earlier msg to you to appeal for Duck's ban. 

    Thank you. 

     

  12. @PTSD Effects - Detatched and Disconnected @PTSDawarenessmonth You’re Not Crazy! – Disconnection from Reality Is Common in Anxiety Sufferers September 10, 2014 by Marie Glenmore Do you ever feel like you’re outside your body, looking at yourself – as though your actions aren’t really yours? Do you ever have the sensation that you are living in a dream, and nothing around you feels real? If the answer is yes, does it make you feel a little bit crazy sometimes? When Nothing Feels Real: @Derealization @Depersonalization and @Anxiety These are phenomena called depersonalization and derealization, and you may be surprised to learn that it’s actually quite common in psychological disorders such as anxiety and depression. They are especially common during panic attacks, but depersonalization and/or derealization (DP/DR) can happen at any time. For instance, derealization is something I’ve experienced throughout most of my life, and strangely enough, it has never occurred while I was actually having a panic attack. DP/DR can be incredibly distressing. These experiences tend to fuel further anxiety and panic attacks, and perpetuate the feelings of DP/DR. It can become a vicious cycle that feels impossible to break, and this is often very frightening for those who don’t fully understand what’s going on. If it’s happening to you, I hope you can take some comfort in knowing that it happens to many of us, and it does not mean you’re crazy, or that you’re going crazy! Despite feeling uncomfortable or scary, it’s actually not dangerous and will not cause lasting damage. Disassociation through Derealization and Depersonalization Depersonalization and derealization are considered to be dissociative symptoms, which can occur on their own, or alongside other disorders. It is often a result of past trauma, but can also come about after experiencing prolonged stress and anxiety. Essentially, depersonalization is feeling divorced from your sense of self – that feeling that you’re watching yourself do things, or that you’re not in your body. Derealization is a state in which the things — or even people — around you do not feel real. Chronic DP/DR is classified as a dissociative disorder, which can occur on its own, but is often comorbid with other conditions, such as anxiety, depression, and bipolar disorder. It often comes about from severe traumatic events, but can also be a result of prolonged stress and anxiety. DP/DR — when not induced by drugs, alcohol, or another health condition — is thought to be a coping mechanism of the brain that gets “switched on” in order to allow to brain to experience stress or trauma less intensely. (This is why it’s a common occurrence during panic attacks.) However, it’s important to note that DP/DR can happen even when you do not feel particularly stressed or upset. Sometimes, when it comes on unexpectedly like this, it can feel even more disturbing. Common DP/DR experiences include: Feeling disconnected from your body, or that your actions aren’t your own (depersonalization). Being in a dreamlike state, or feeling as though you’re looking at everything through a haze or fog (derealization). Feeling like an alien or a stranger, even in familiar places; in severe instances, you may not recognize people or things you know. Questioning everything, even things that you once felt certain of – your faith, the reality of everything around you, and even your purpose and what it means to be alive. Feeling that the things are lacking in significance, as though they are lacking in depth and meaning. A sense of hyper-awareness, as though you cannot stop over-thinking or over-analyzing everything. Feeling totally absorbed in your own thoughts, or even feeling that you are in your own world or dimension; sometimes finding yourself in a place and not remembering how you got there Not remembering what happened during the dissociative state (though this is certainly not always the case) Managing Depersonalization and Derealization The good news is that depersonalization and derealization caused by anxiety are not actually dangerous, even if it feels particularly distressing. For most people who do not have a chronic dissociative disorder, these states eventually pass. The best thing to do is not fight it, since this can cause more stress or panic and feed the cycle of anxiety and DP/DR. Here’s what’s been helpful for me and others I know who experience DP/DR: Take a deep breath or practice breathing exercises. Focus on mindfulness and whatever’s going on in the present moment – this can help keep you “grounded.” Practice regular meditation and yoga. These activities increase your awareness of your own body and mind, which can help to prevent that disconnected feeling. Additionally, over time, yoga and meditation can greatly aid in emotional healing and recovery from anxiety disorders. Try to keep busy. Many people report that they don’t struggle with DP/DR as much when they’re busy. It tends to be more common when you’re alone or not doing anything in particular. Find a helpful distraction, such as a funny video or an absorbing book. Distractions don’t work for everyone, but for some, they help pull them back down to reality. Avoid alcohol and other drugs, as they typically intensify the feelings of DP/DR. Make sleep a priority – fatigue also intensifies dissociative states. Reach out to someone you trust. We are often hesitant to talk about these feelings because we don’t want people to think we’re “crazy,” but maintaining a connection with others is important to prevent further withdrawal from reality. Explore these issues with a therapist My personal favorite strategy: Accept what is happening, remind yourself that it’s just a little “glitch” in the brain, and even try to embrace it if possible. When derealization kicks in for me, I like to go for a long walk, preferably in the woods or someplace with a lot of natural beauty. I may feel like I’m walking in a dream, but usually by the time I get home, things feel real to me again. However, any physical activity can potentially have this effect – go to the gym, dance, take a yoga class. These are all great options. An Important Note on DP/DR and Benzodiazepines Benzodiazepines such as Ativan, Xanax and Klonopin are commonly prescribed to anxiety patients, but ironically, they can induce DP/DR in people, especially after long-term use. This is the case even if you always take your medication exactly as prescribed and keep a consistent dose. In fact, the most intense period of derealization I’ve ever felt was during the months when I was prescribed Klonopin twice a day. Additionally, stopping benzodiazepine use is also known to cause depersonalization and derealization. This can last even after other withdrawal symptoms have subsided. Therefore, anxiety sufferers who experience DP/DR should consider whether these drugs may do more harm than good for them, and explore other medication-free coping strategies.
  13. Chanukah (Hanukkah)

    until
    Hanukkah: History Print Email Share 31 17 Unlike many Jewish holidays, Hanukkah (also known as the Festival of Lights) is not mentioned in the Bible. The historical events upon which the celebration is based are recorded in Maccabees I and II, two books contained within a later collection of writings known as the Apocrypha. Although Hanukkah is considered a “minor” Jewish festival, today it ranks—along with Passover and Purim—as one of the most beloved Jewish family holidays. In the year 168 B.C.E., the Syrian tyrant Antiochus Epiphanes sent his soldiers to Jerusalem. The Syrians desecrated the Temple, the holiest place for Jews at that time. Antiochus also abolished Judaism, outlawing the observance of Shabbat and the Festivals, as well as circumcision. Altars and idols were set up for the worship of Greek gods and he offered Jews two options: conversion or death. On the 25th day of the Hebrew month of Kislev in 168 B.C.E., the Temple was renamed for the Greek god Zeus. A resistance movement— led by a priestly family known as the Hasmoneans, or Maccabees—developed against the cruelty of Antiochus. The head of the family was Mattathias, an elderly man. His son, Judah, became the chief strategist and military leader of the resistance. Though outnumbered, Judah Maccabee and his fighters miraculously won two major battles, routing the Syrians decisively. Although historians debate the causes and outcomes of the war in which Judah Maccabee and his followers defeated the Syrian armies of Antiochus, there is no doubt that Hanukkah evokes stirring images of Jewish valor against overwhelming odds. Other themes rooted in the observance of the holiday include the refusal to submit to the religious demands of an empire practicing idolatry, the struggle against total assimilation into Hellenistic culture and loss of Jewish identity, and the fight for Jewish political autonomy and self-determination. Hanukkah, which means “dedication,” is the festival that commemorates the purification and rededication of the Temple following the defilement caused by the Greeks during their occupation of that holy place. Today, the holiday reminds Jews to rededicate themselves to stand against forces that would destroy Judaism and to keep alive the flame of Jewish religion, culture, and peoplehood so that it may be passed on to the next generation. Originally, the eight-day holiday was intended to parallel the eight-day festival of Sukkot. The Books of the Maccabees made no mention of the legend concerning a small jar of oil that unexpectedly lasted for eight days. Only centuries after the Maccabees’ defeat of the Syrians did the story of the jar of oil—which has come to be a part of Hanukkah—appear in the Talmud. According to the legend, when the Maccabees entered the Temple and began to reclaim it from the Greeks, they immediately relit the ner tamid (eternal light), which burned constantly in the Temple and has a parallel in our synagogues to this day. In the Temple, they found a single jar of oil, which was sufficient for only one day. The messenger who was sent to secure additional oil took eight days to complete his mission, and miraculously, the single jar of oil continued to burn until his return. The rabbis of the Talmud attributed the eight days of Hanukkah to the miracle of this single jar of oil. Although the practice of lighting the menorah was common throughout much of the 19th century, North American Jews tended to neglect most of the other traditions and practices associated with the holiday. By the 1920s, however, Jews increasingly added gift-giving to their Hanukkah celebrations, prompting Christians to refer to Hanukkah as the "Jewish Christmas." Like many aspects of Jewish religious practice, the transformation of Hanukkah was linked to the growth of North American Jewry within its unique environment. The elevation of Hanukkah to a major holiday was the result of Jews acculturating themselves to a North America that was overwhelmingly Christian in population and symbols. Although Hanukkah had become an important holiday among North American Jews by the 1920s, it would be incorrect to regard it as an imitation of Christmas with an emphasis on the exchange of presents. Rather, North American Jews use this holiday as a celebration of family, reinforcing Jewish identity in a place whose population may be overwhelmingly Christian but in which Jews feel at home. Hanukkah, therefore, is a means for North American Jews to feel a kinship with their neighbors, while simultaneously asserting their Jewish distinctiveness.
  14. Thanksgiving Day

    Thanksgiving Day, annual national holiday in the United States and Canada celebrating the harvest and other blessings of the past year. Americans generally believe that their Thanksgiving is modeled on a 1621 harvest feast shared by the English colonists (Pilgrims) of Plymouth and the Wampanoag Indians. The American holiday is particularly rich in legend and symbolism. Spectators are showered with confetti during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade in New York City. Joseph Sohm—ChromoSohm Inc./Corbis Plymouth’s Thanksgiving began with a few colonists going out “fowling,” possibly for s but more probably for the easier prey of geese and ducks, since they “in one day killed as much as…served the company almost a week.” Next, 90 or so Wampanoag made a surprise appearance at the settlement’s gate, doubtlessly unnerving the 50 or so colonists. Nevertheless, over the next few days the two groups socialized without incident. The Wampanoag contributed venison to the feast, which included the fowl and probably fish, eels, shellfish, stews, vegetables, and alcohol. Since Plymouth had few buildings and manufactured goods, most people ate outside while sitting on the ground or on barrels with plates on their laps. The men fired guns, ran races, and drank liquor, struggling to speak in broken English and Wampanoag. This was a rather disorderly affair, but it sealed a treaty between the two groups that lasted until King Philip’s War (1675–76), in which hundreds of colonists and thousands of Indians lost their lives. The New England colonists were accustomed to regularly celebrating “Thanksgivings,” days of prayer thanking God for blessings such as military victory or the end of a drought. The U.S. Continental Congress proclaimed a national Thanksgiving upon the enactment of the Constitution, for example. Yet, after 1798, the new U.S. Congress left Thanksgiving declarations to the states; some objected to the national government’s involvement in a religious observance, Southerners were slow to adopt a New England custom, and others took offense over the day’s being used to hold partisan speeches and parades. A national Thanksgiving Day seemed more like a lightning rod for controversy than a unifying force. Thanksgiving Day did not become an official holiday until Northerners dominated the federal government. While sectional tensions prevailed in the mid-19th century, the editor of the popular magazine Godey’s Lady’s Book, Sarah Josepha Hale, campaigned for a national Thanksgiving Day to promote unity. She finally won the support of President Abraham Lincoln. On October 3, 1863, during the Civil War, Lincoln proclaimed a national day of thanksgiving to be celebrated on Thursday, November 26. The holiday was annually proclaimed by every president thereafter, and the date chosen, with few exceptions, was the last Thursday in November. President Franklin D. Roosevelt, however, attempted to extend the Christmas shopping season, which generally begins with the Thanksgiving holiday, and to boost the economy by moving the date back a week, to the third week in November. But not all states complied, and, after a joint resolution of Congress in 1941, Roosevelt issued a proclamation in 1942 designating the fourth Thursday in November (which is not always the last Thursday) as Thanksgiving Day. As the country became more urban and family members began to live farther apart, Thanksgiving became a time to gather together. The holiday moved away from its religious roots to allow immigrants of every background to participate in a common tradition. Thanksgiving Day football games, beginning with Yale versus Princeton in 1876, enabled fans to add some rowdiness to the holiday. In the late 1800s parades of costumed revelers became common. In 1920 Gimbel’s department store in Philadelphia staged a parade of about 50 people with Santa Claus at the rear of the procession. Since 1924 the annual Macy’s parade in New York City has continued the tradition, with huge balloons since 1927. The holiday associated with Pilgrims and Native Americans has come to symbolize intercultural peace, America’s opportunity for newcomers, and the sanctity of home and family. Days of thanksgiving in Canada also originated in the colonial period, arising from the same European traditions, in gratitude for safe journeys, peace, and bountiful harvests. The earliest celebration was held in 1578, when an expedition led by Martin Frobisher held a ceremony in present-day Nunavut to give thanks for the safety of its fleet. In 1879 Parliament established a national Thanksgiving Day on November 6; the date has varied over the years. Since 1957 Thanksgiving Day has been celebrated in Canada on the second Monday in October.
  15. June 6, 2016 • Contributed by Lisa Lerner, MSW, LCSW Trauma is defined as an injury, either physical or emotional, which can lead a person to experience psychological, physiological, and emotional distress. This distress can manifest in our thoughts, emotional experiences, and body sensations. When these symptoms persist, this sometimes leads to the development of posttraumatic stress, also known as PTSD. Posttraumatic stress is a condition that can significantly affect a person’s ability to enjoy life, relate with others, and function normally. Signs of Posttraumatic Stress Posttraumatic stress can manifest as frequent fearfulness, persistent unwanted thoughts such as flashbacks and nightmares, and avoidance of certain people, situations, or stimuli. Individuals with PTSD often describe feeling outside of their body, “disconnected” from themselves and others and often experiencing a sense of “meaninglessness.” PTSD can originate from a single traumatic incident or from chronic traumatic stressors experienced over the course of a lifetime. These traumas can include, among other things, abandonment or a lack of nurturance from key attachment figures. Commonly held beliefs by a person experiencing PTSD are “It was my fault” or “I am unsafe” to more defective beliefs, such as “I am unlovable” or “I am incapable.” Find a Therapist for Trauma / PTSD Advanced Search It is important to know that while these beliefs are deeply ingrained and painful, each of us holds the capacity to heal. With proper treatment, one can process through these traumatic memories, connect with strengths and resources, and allow healing to take place. Shifting a Negative Memory into a Positive One Given that PTSD generally has to do with negative memories leading to negative emotional experiences, the best immediate antidote when experiencing emotional distress is to bring up or “install” a positive memory. Installing positive memories refers to a person’s ability to intentionally generate a positive memory and allow it to shift their present emotional state. When done correctly, doing so can effectively alter a negative emotion into a positive one. To do this, think of a memory that brings up a feeling of warmth or safety. What image comes to mind? What can you see, smell, taste, hear, or feel? When you think about this positive memory, what do you believe about yourself? How does this memory make you feel? Where do you experience that positive feeling in your body? Bring up all of those details and allow yourself to experience the positive experiences related to this memory. Other things to do when triggered: Sniff an aroma. Do you have a favorite aroma? Eucalyptus, rosemary, lavender, maybe one of your favorite herbs? Take a sniff. Notice any shift in your affect? Aromas are an easy and immediate way to shift negative affect. A pleasant aroma activates the limbic system, stimulating a deep-seated positive emotional response. Chew a candy. Have you ever noticed that your mouth gets dry when you get distressed? This has to do with the sympathetic nervous system, also known as the natural stress response. Sucking a candy is an effective way to generate saliva, stimulating the parasympathetic nervous system. This can also be done by chewing gum, drinking water, or just by generating saliva. Notice two objects in the room. Have you ever noticed that when you get triggered, you respond disproportionately to the situation? When we get triggered, we are mentally and emotionally responding in a way that is more related to our past than our present. When you notice this start to happen, look around the room and bring your attention to two physical objects in the space. Just notice these two objects. Shifting your attention to the space will bring your awareness back to your present orientation. This is a hallmark of mindfulness. Carry an anchoring object. Do you have a person who represents a quality of nurturance, protectiveness, or wisdom? Do you have an object or symbol that represents something meaningful? A picture, a rosary, a favorite quote, or a piece of jewelry? These things are resources and strengths to utilize when overcoming PTSD. Carrying or holding an anchoring object can help bring the positive emotions related to these resources into your current emotional state. © Copyright 2016 GoodTherapy.org. All rights reserved. Permission to publish granted by Lisa Lerner, LCSW, therapist in New York City, New York