Taking the Topic of Depression & Suicide Out of the Closet

Taking the Topic of Depression & Suicide Out of the Closet

I am a glass-half-full kind of gal, I joke and say “If I need my glass to be fuller, I’ll pour it in a smaller cup!” All that, tongue-in-cheek of course. I never understood depression. I thought you could “snap out of it.”

 

 

It was not until my mothers’ death that I felt the sting of it. After the month or so of packing and inventorying and selling mothers home, I came to the house in Montana and locked myself up in my bedroom. I turned down all the shades and stayed in there for three days.
It is only when you have experienced even a touch of it, that you begin to understand that depression is not so simple…

The importance of this topic lies in our ability to give suicide and depression life instead of death. Talking to your friends and family, asking for help and knowing that you are not alone is the first, and hardest, step in becoming mentally stronger during these bouts.

 

 

Sufia joined us during our multigenerational photo shoot. As a high school counselor, she is passionate about opening up the conversation to her kids, as well as, her community about the importance of suicide awareness and prevention.

“I’ve witnessed the devastation caused by suicide. The feelings of pain, guilt, confusion, and anger can be overwhelming for the family and friends of the victims of suicide.”  -Sufia

 

Suicide is a difficult topic to talk about, but just one look at the statistics and you can see why it’s important to address this issue. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) WISQARS Leading Causes of Death Reports, in 2016:

  • Suicide was the tenth leading cause of death overall in the United States, claiming the lives of nearly 45,000 people.
  • Suicide was the second leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 10 and 34, and the fourth leading cause of death among individuals between the ages of 35 and 54.
  • There were more than twice as many suicides (44,965) in the United States as there were homicides (19,362).

 

 

It can be scary to think that someone we know could be thinking about taking their own life, but there are steps you can take to help. I encourage you to learn more about suicide prevention. 

I saw an interview with a young author, Johann Hari who wrote “Lost Connections: Uncovering The Real Causes of Depression and the Unexpected Solution.” Perhaps we don’t always have to mask and medicate our way through depression. In this book, he speaks to scientists and experts about the neuroscience behind depression and non-medical related treatments for getting through it all. I encourage you to check out this best-selling book.

If you don’t think you’re affected by this subject, I encourage you to take a closer look at your loved ones. Be kind to those you encounter. Share a smile with a stranger and a kind word to those who you may feel opposition from. Remember that depression can affect anyone at any given time. Don’t be shy, if you need anyone to listen; our door is always open.

Floatation Therapy

Floatation Therapy

Nothing to fear but fear itself. Unless you’re afraid of small, dark, enclosed spaces. Don’t be! 

While it seems mysteriously intriguing, and to some of my friends even scary or intimating, floating can actually be quite fabulous.

Float therapy is unique, and in my opinion, a very relaxing form of meditation. The sessions are either 60 or 90 minutes. A combination of hydrogen peroxide and Epsom salt keep you totally afloat, so you can rest and let your mind drift away.

Flotation Therapy is said to improve Memory and Concentration. It stimulates creative thinking & problem-solving. And in many cases, it creates extra energy. And in my case, I slept like a baby!

Of course, I needed evidence…

for those of you who doubted my commitment to the work of wellness at hand. (No chickening out).

For those of you who have never done this, here is my advice. Embrace your positivity! Bring a joyful mind and a meditative spirit. It can be challenging to quiet the mind or to stay positive. Floating is the ultimate opportunity to do both.

If you want to know what I mean by this, read my blog, “The Universe Has No Sense of Humor.”

Why Do Some Aging Women Feel Invisible

Why Do Some Aging Women Feel Invisible

Approximately 10 months ago I was taking my first foray into a Facebook and I found a group.

Forever Fierce, The Midlife Revolution. I got in touch with its founder Catherine Grace O’Connell and started on a journey that I could never have guessed would lead me to 24 hours in LA. Catherine was helpful personable and charming. Little did I know that she is so busy that taking the time to talk to me seems now to be miraculous.

I joined the Facebook Group and started connecting with women mainly through my Instagram account, Stylebeyondage. We “like” each other’s pictures and leave each other notes, we read each other’s Facebook posts and share our hurdles and successes. I was driving to LA to see my daughter, creative director and muse. Since I’m her mother, I’ll include a shameless plug to her swimwear line, Evoke Serena.  And it occurred to me, why don’t we reach out to see if any of these ladies would meet us.

What I found was a great gift.

My first meeting was at a Kundalini Yoga class Serena was teaching and plant-based cooking lesson held in Burbank.

My first meeting was at a Kundalini Yoga class Serena was teaching.  I invited Angie Weils, (IG: @theAgelessRebellion) to meet me there. After chanting and breathing routines, we had a wonderful meeting over vegan lunch. We talked about health, children and why women of our age in this culture say they feel invisible. Angie is whimsical, playful and seriously devoted to communicating her own brand of joy. She’s a very smart lady with a lot to say. 

Angie has written an interactive and playful planner which she calls a journey into agelessness. A flashlight to your soul, link to your spirit, and a badass coach for your mind and fab fit body. It’s available on Amazon.

My second meeting was with Wendy Packer

We met at Neiman Marcus (stomping grounds for her) and her mother before her. She has a huge following on Facebook, Instagram, and her blog. Why? Because she is an astute businesswoman, mother of two young men, and a hard-working innovator. Case in point her work with Palm Springs Fashion Week among many other endeavors. Follow her on @fashionoverfifty.wendy to learn more.

We had a great discussion about reinventing ourselves in the age of social media, keeping our identity in the face of obstacles, and yes – why do women of our age sometimes say they feel invisible.  I hope you’ll comment and share your experience or your opinion with us.

My third meeting was with Julie Liams, pictured at the top

We met at Chado Tea House inside the iconic Dolby theater complex in Los Angeles. Beautiful and charming. Down to earth and funny. Julie has managed to work in Hollywood for over 25 years . She has a wonderful husband, three children and a great life attitude. And again, the topic comes up: Why do you think some women in our culture are feeling invisible after a certain age. And again, I ask that you comment, and share any feeling or experiences you have on the topic of invisibility.

Be sure to follow Julie on Instagram, and subscribe to her blog.

In the end, the answer to that question turned out to be remarkably simple and found in our social media feeds.  American culture honors youth above all.  Other cultures honor age and experience.  Here, Women are marketed to by youth and beauty.  There, they are honored and revered as matriarchs.

Luckily, we have some prime examples on how to age youthfully. My personal muse is Dorrie, an 83 year young former Playboy Bunny turned fashion blogger. Check her out on IG @seniorstylebible and on her blog Senior Style Bible.

My question for you is this: How do We, as a society, adapt ourselves in a youth driven culture? I’d love to here your thoughts

Crystal Singing Bowls and Meditative Sound Healing

Crystal Singing Bowls and Meditative Sound Healing

Using Sound Meditation to Aide Your Body’s Ability to Heal Itself

The Goal of Crystal Bowl sound meditation is to reduce stress and pain, promote deep relaxation, develop self-awareness, improve learning, and clarify personal values.

All in the Universe is made up of vibration. In a relaxed state the human body, including our brain waves, vibrate at a fundamental frequency of about 8 cycles per second. This allows us to be attuned to the basic electromagnetic field of the Earth itself—the Divine Vibration.

Our bodies are genetically pre-programmed to be self-healing instruments given a supportive environment and lifestyle. When the vibration of one body part is in harmony with the rest of the body and with the Divine Vibration each body part will be healthy. The body can heal itself in a state of deep relaxation. Sound and music are some of the easiest ways to evoke the relaxation response.

Sound can promote healing or dis-ease depending on the quality of vibration. The vibrations we surround ourselves with reach us where words and hands cannot.

Sound affects our organs, tissues, cells, and DNA. Sound vibrations can produce changes in the autonomic, immune, endocrine and neuropeptide systems.

One of the main properties of quartz crystal is to amplify. Crystal can also store, amplify, transfer, and transmute energy. Combining these properties with the Divine Blueprint vibrations they produce, Crystal Singing Bowls generate sound that restores the correct harmonic patterns for health.

I discovered the power of sound in 2013 while healing from a major health crisis. I acquired and began playing my set of Crystal Singing Bowls for public and private groups in 2015.  Seven of my twelve bowl set are tuned to the major body/chakra systems. Five bowls are tuned to the major endocrine systems of the body. Each bowl, when toned, can affect body areas associated with it.

My intention at all of my Crystal Bowl Meditations is to provide a relaxing experience to support the intention you come with for your own healing. I provide sessions for groups and individuals with a general or specific focus. Crystal Bowl sessions are great for all ages, environments and animals! For more information about Crystal Bowl Meditation contact me at kathymartin7314@gmail.com or 402.253.5027.

Love and Blessings,

Kathy

Being Comfortable at Any Age, Women 17 to 71, A Multigenerational Photo Shoot

Being Comfortable at Any Age, Women 17 to 71, A Multigenerational Photo Shoot

Fashion Photo Shoot Fun!

If you caught “My stories” during this fashion shoot, you noticed it was pouring rain. Of course, we managed to have fun anyway. Our destination was the Flathead Lake Lodge a huge dude ranch in Bigfork, Montana with tons of amenities. What could possibly go wrong! The management was wonderful and more than accommodating. We were set. Our imaginations were humming, and we had boxes and boxes of divine outfits coming every day. Jimmy from Fed Ex was a regular.

It all started out innocently enough when my friend Sue and I went off to scout for locations.

Serena and I had been planning a multigenerational photo shoot for quite a while. It was bohemian inspired, with models from 17 to 71. We were looking for a Montana hideaway with lots of different settings: teepees, cabins, lakefronts.

As the day approached the weather was getting worse. Of course, the day before we were scheduled to shoot it started raining and never stopped. Another lesson in
You can control some of the things some of the time…

We had to cancel the Lodge and move to the house. Now the games are really on! We had to find the best lighting in the house bring in tropical plants, rugs, and pillows you name it. All to provide us with the right setting to showcase our theme.

Controlled chaos!

We had a lovely time with all our local ladies the day before. We tried on outfits and set the scene. Sadly, as promised, the day of the photo shoot was raining cats and dogs.

Working With Hope.

Our photographer Hope (IG:@hkcameraface) is patient super talented and flexible. Not to mention busy. Currently in a Hong Kong working for 10 days. She has managed to make everyone look great and be comfortable with the camera.

 

We started at three ( lots of activity) and around four o’clock we realize we are missing one. Our new assistant Laura is not here. Unusual and completely out of character! A quick check of my email and it turns out she has been in an accident and is in the hospital with a neck brace waiting on an MRI. Another call and she is “fine” but sore. Thank goodness. One hand down!

 

In the coming weeks Stylebeyondage will be expressing through pictures, how different generations can take a look or a feeling and translate into a fashion statement that works for your age. Our hope is that you enjoy seeing it as much as we enjoyed producing it. We hope to inspire, amuse you and deliver to your imagination the truth that fashion and trends can really be applicable to Style Beyond Age.