After over 5 long years of medication withdrawal, I took about a year to just rediscover my life, my music and writing. The journey of benzo withdrawal brought many incredible people into my life to add to the many great friendships that I have been blessed to have over the years. Many of those friends were unsure if I would ever make it through, and were surprised to see me bounce back after numerous hits that seemed at time to be shocking and surreal.
During that year that I was healing in my little guest house, I discovered more and more people that were going through the same exact things that I was going through. I wanted to create an organization that could help these people on a number of levels. Fortunately, the internet has provided much more information about these medications and how to taper them than was available to me when I first was put on them. There are a number of online support groups and blogs that really have helped me a lot.
With all of the information that was available, I found there were few people that had actually been through withdrawal off these medications that were offering support services. There were times that I wished I could have found someone to talk to that really understood. Most people that go through this lose a lot of friends and family because you are just so sick that you can't engage in life the way you could before withdrawal, and the healing process is very long. It leaves you virtually incapable of dealing with even day to day things let alone working a job or having a social life due to a damaged central nervous system.
In addition, I really saw the world getting more frantic and that anxiety, a word we had barely heard about twenty years ago was now becoming a household word. People are working jobs they hate to stay alive and are going at such a fast pace that they don't have time to slow down and find the things that give them joy in life. So, this organization was put together to encourage people coming off psychiatric medications to discover more of who they are as a creative and spiritual being.
The one thing that helped me survive withdrawal, was that I kept working on creative projects that I loved to do. I wrote screenplays, poems, songs and started working on a book. I have always loved to write, and I never realized how much having this creative outlet would serve me later in life. I was fortunate to have known this at an early age, and I realize that there are many people who never find what they truly love to do in life.
The Follow Your Bliss Foundation is dedicated to helping people find that thing they love most in their life. The fundraiser we are launching this spring will be aimed at helping with the cost of educating people through various programs such as meditation, yoga, massage, life coaching and other self-healing and discovery programs.
The song "Return From the Abyss" was written for one of my very dearest friends who supported me in too many ways to count. One thing I came out of recovery with is how many amazing friends I had and that many people are not as fortunate to have the amount of support that I was so lucky to have. The song also expresses a point in acute withdrawal that was one of the darkest places I had ever been to in this life, and I hope it's a place I will never have to go back to again.
While I was working on the recording, I realized that there were many people that were going through this dark night of the soul. This might not be just from benzo withdrawal, but with other challenging life events as well. We are living in an auspicious time, and things are changing fast. Everywhere we turn we are being served a huge plattter of fear, and it takes a lot of courage to walk away from the established thinking and find a different way of doing things that are in the best interest of ourselves and other people in general.
I also realized that I lost myself in the process of filling myself up with outside things instead of going inward and understanding more about what it meant to just be happy and content with the simple day to day things. I forgot about all of the little things I loved when I was running at a mad pace to keep up with an outside image of who I thought I should be. I think this is going to be a process we all need to go through if we want to find peace in this life and therefore be able to help others find theirs as well.
I found out that peace is an inside job, and if we are waiting for someone or something in our lives to give us that sense of fulfillment, we will continue down a path in this world of looking for the perfect job, perfect relationship and perfect body. Nothing will ever make us feel complete until we follow our bliss and find those things that truly give us joy in life, regardless of what anyone tells us we have to do.
So, stay tuned for our upcoming Indiegogo campaign, and make sure to share the video with all of your friends and family. We are all in this game of life together, and we need to help each other find our way out of the darkness and back into the light.