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A Great Place to Start: A Book Review of Ben DeLong's "There's a God in My Closet"

Photo by Pixabay from PexelsIntroduction It’s been two months since my last blog post – wow! I can’t believe how fast time goes when one is quarantined at home.
For those of you who may not know, I usually post every other Wednesday. Recently, though, I put my blog on hiatus in order to focus on my mental health during this COVID-19 pandemic.
One of the main activities I’ve enjoyed for self-care is reading…and I mean reading. I already met my yearly goal in five months! Seriously. Not twelve. Five months.
But I digress.It just so happens that around that time I was accepted as a book reviewer for Speakeasy. I thought I’d feed two birds with one scone, as the saying goes, and use my first book review for them as my next blog post in order to slowly get back into blogging.Without further ado, let’s ado the book review. (Geez, that was a bad pun, even for me!)SummaryThere’s a God in My Closet: Encountering the Love Who Embraces Our Skeletons by Ben DeLong is a book about building a non-abus…
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What Do We Have to Live For?: Read This if the Coronavirus Outbreak Has Brought Up Suicidal Ideation for You or a Loved One

Photo by Free-Photos from Pixabay
Schools are one of the most popular settings for movies, T.V. shows, books, and maybe even music videos. Post-secondary schools especially. So, it’s easy to imagine what that kind of environment is like, even if you didn’t go to college.
I absolutely love working at an artsy post-secondary school. Since the Student Services office is by the music department, I’m always hearing students singing/rapping, playing instruments, or creating beats. There’s almost always laughter and chatter in the hallways too, especially when the students are on break or if Admissions is doing a tour. Occasionally, on quieter days, I can even hear the peppy music from the lobby or someone using the vending machine.
It’s not just the sounds, though, that I enjoy. Sometimes I catch students from the film department walking down the hallway with costumes, props, and equipment, showcasing their creativity before they even press record. Someone always greets, waves, or smiles at me…

My Testimony: The Summer I Learned Black Lives Matter TOO

Photo by Tania Diaz
In the summer of 2016, I was brimming with energy to change the world! I was in my second missionary internship after recently graduating from college with an undergraduate degree in English Writing. Upon my return for the fall semester, I was going to start a graduate degree in Social Work. 
So, one can imagine my enthusiasm when my supervisor took my roommate/co-intern and me to our first protest.
It was a Black Lives Matter rally and I had no idea what to expect. When we arrived, our supervisor warned us that if the police showed up and things got out of hand, we should run. She spoke as casually as a mother repeating house rules to her kids.
I heard her warning, but I’ll be honest that I was distracted. The writer, and future social worker, in me wanted to soak in every little detail.
The crowd gathered before a house turned community center. Surprisingly (to me at the time), there was a diverse crowd, from black community members to supportive members of other…

My Own Valentine: Why We Should Practice Self-Care (and Celebrate Self-Love) in February

Photo by Jess Watters from Pixabay
I don’t know how it happens for other people, but I remember the specific moment I realized I loved myself.
A couple of years ago, I had the worst year of my life. I won’t go into details as that could fill a book of its own. Let’s just say my self-esteem was the lowest it has ever been.
As I drove to group therapy, Demi Lovato’s song “Sober” started playing on my radio. I parked just as I heard the last line of the song about apologizing to herself. I immediately started bawling.
The line triggered an image in my mind’s eye, which you might find odd. Just bear with me.
I pictured myself standing tall, looking my best all dressed up and well-groomed. Walking towards me was another version of myself. I’ll refer to that second me as “she” to avoid confusion.
She was dressed in days old clothing and her head was down in shame. She also had her arms crossed over her torso, as if she was hugging herself. Concerned, I met her halfway. She looked up slightly and…

My Testimony: The Summer I Came Face-to-face with My Privilege