As Summer as the Fair

Celebrating Firsts and Lasts in the summer sun at our small-town County Fair

I woke to the roaring whisper of the wind through the treetops. It held me those first few minutes, like a song can hold a memory, and then the rain came. Quietly at first, it was the tuning of an orchestra on my rooftop before it burst into the bold sounds of brass and percussion.

It felt exquisitely “summer” lying awake to the sound of a warm rain. I had long since kicked off the quilt and lay with only the sheet covering my body. The ceiling fan kept the air moving and I shifted to my other side once more, one arm under my head and the other cradling my growing abdomen. Continue reading “As Summer as the Fair”

Where to Get Help

Mental Health in our Rural Communities (Part 4 – Sidebar 2)

For help right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or call 911.

You can also:

  • Contact your local medical provider
  • Talk to someone you trust: your pastor or faith leader, a friend, family member, supervisor, teacher or coach
  • Call The Village Employee Assistance Program: 800-627-8220 (services available to all community members regardless of employment)
  • Call or email the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) Helpline 1-800-950-NAMI (6264) or info@nami.org
  • Get free booklets on all aspects of mental health or join a free online support group at NAMI.org
  • Text NAMI to 741-741 for free 24/7 Crisis Support
  • Call the National Sexual Assault Hotline – 800-656-HOPE (4673)
  • Call the National Domestic Violence Hotline – 800-799-SAFE (7233)
  • Visit www.drugrehab.com/guides/suicide-risks/

(Published in the February 13th, 2018 Warroad Pioneer)

Part 4 The New Normal

Part 4 Sidebar 1 Know the Signs and Symptoms

The New Normal

Mental Health in Our Rural Communities (Part 4)

We all know someone with high blood pressure, with diabetes, or who has broken a bone and received treatment. We don’t think of them as abnormal. Chances are, we also know someone with some degree of mental illness, whether that be mild depression, anxiety or something more serious.

Despite one in four people suffering with mental health issues, the tendency to think of them or ourselves as abnormal is still prevalent. Continue reading “The New Normal”

Safe, Calm and Consistent Wins the Race

Mental Health in our Rural Communities (Part 3)

As parents, there is nothing we care about more than the health and well-being of our children.

Yet often, for both ourselves and our children, we de-prioritize mental health issues until as individuals or families, we are in crisis mode. We’re quite fortunate In Roseau County to have access to a good crisis response system, but hopefully just as you would aim to take care of your heart health before the muscle is in full crisis, so too should mental health be prioritized before something major happens. Continue reading “Safe, Calm and Consistent Wins the Race”

It Takes a Village to Raise an Adult

Mental Health in our Rural Communities (Part 2)

As children, we are dependent on our parents, and as aging adults at the end of our lives we are often dependent on our children. Conversely, the chapter between those two phases is characterized by independence. And yet adulthood is actually the time in our lives when we experience the most hardship, the most intellectual challenges, the most loss, and the most mental anguish.

For a large majority of us, we were never prepared to deal with these situations. No one teaches us how to go through divorce, handle depression, support a family member through addiction, bury our parents or worse, a child and keep on living through the grief. Continue reading “It Takes a Village to Raise an Adult”

What’s Eating Rural America?

We are Northerners. We are small-town Americans. We come from hearty stock. Our backs are strong and our wills, even stronger. We don’t like handouts. We work. We live. We persevere. We are mentally tough and emotionally ready.

Or at least we’d like to think so.

Despite being far from the speed and the bustle of the city, regardless of our clean air and pristine water, even with our close-knit communities and disproportionately large numbers claiming faith, we rural folk are not immune to the stress of the modern-day world. We still fall prey to Continue reading “What’s Eating Rural America?”

Cultivating a New Kind of Crop

Some new farmers moved to town last year. You might have noticed their first crop lit up in yellow and green along the Warroad River as you cross the Highway 11 bridge. Avis and Bill Kennel, the owners of the house with the palm trees, certainly wouldn’t label themselves farmers, but indeed they have planted a crop, and it will bear fruit. Already has, in fact. Continue reading “Cultivating a New Kind of Crop”