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Silent Presence is a podcast where people share personal stories of addiction, mental health, grief, hope and their journey moving forward.

May 26, 2020

Mental Illness and Providing Care to Loved Ones With Serious Mental Health Problems

On this episode of Silent Presence, Rich Patricia revisits a story that he produced in 2008. As a child, he grew up in a household where he cared for a loved one who was suffering from serious mental health problems. He first noticed the changes when he was in 6th grade and they became very serious all throughout high school. In 2008, eleven years ago, he decided to produce a documentary film called Strive for Happiness. This film was his first attempt to open the dialogue about mental illness in our country and have others speak about their own experiences as caregivers for loved ones who also suffer from serious forms of mental illness. So, he decided for Mental Health Awareness Month to extract the audio from this documentary and replay it today as a podcast for all of you.

"Strive For Happiness" is a documentary film about the lives of those who live with or care for loved ones who suffer from the many forms of severe mental illness. The director's hope is that this film raises awareness about the illness, removes some of the stigmas that still exist, and hopefully makes some change in policies that currently exist (funding, etc.) The film is documented by director, Richard M. Patricia as it takes a closer look at his life growing up in a household with a "loved one" that suffered from bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, depression and obsessive compulsive disorder. The interviews throughout the film reflect what his life was like growing up in a household dealing with mental illness. His hope is that this film will catch the attention of many family members throughout the country that know or lived with a loved one who suffers from mental illness. This film will also relate to anyone who cares for someone with an illness in general.

Richard M. Patricia, of Phillipsburg, NJ, has won a prestigious Award of Merit in the Feature Documentary category from The Indie Fest out of California. The award was given for Patricia’s heart-felt documentary film, Strive For Happiness, which is a film about the lives of those who live with or care for “loved ones” that suffer from a serious form of mental illness. This award will be added to his 1st place Telly Award which Patricia won in 2008. Strive For Happiness features exceptional interviews, information, visuals and sound.

“It’s very exciting to be a recipient of such an outstanding award and a part of a great organization like Indie Fest. I am so happy that my film has been able to affect so many people throughout the country.”

01:00 – Rich Patricia introduces his life living with a loved one who suffered from mental illness and his goal to find happiness
04:02 – Various guests talk about life with their loved one before the mental health problems
07:40 – Difficulties with mental illness as a caregiver
10:16 – Not knowing what to do for your loved one with mental health issues
12:04 – Never give up on loved one with mental illness
12:30 – Rich Patricia talks about growing up confused and frightened
13:52 – It’s not their fault but am I making the right choices
15:33 – As a caregiver, mental illness is emotionally draining to deal with
17:54 – I just want normalcy in my life
19:50 – People in your life don’t understand the illness and expect a lot from you. “Just fix it” they say. Get them help. Getting a loved one help is not as easy as you think
27:01 – The cost for mental health care is incredibly expensive while more and more programs are being cut
29:00 – I refinanced my home and used my 401K to support my loved one with mental illness
31:21 – I see how someone’s life can tumble. I see how homelessness happens. You’re only one bill away from becoming homeless
33:14 – Mental health portrayal in the news and on television. Portray the facts on tv and in entertainment
38:00 – The Stigma around mental illness, depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder
43:00 – Be compassionate towards those with mental illness. Have empathy and gain a better understanding of the illness that affects one in four individuals
46:20 – Educate others about mental health
50:10 – Everybody is only one step away from being in a situation like this
51:00 – Finding happiness in life.

Click below for additional Mental Health Resources
Mental Health Information -  https://www.mentalhealth.gov/
Mental Health America - https://www.mhanational.org/
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline - 1-800-273-TALK (8255)
SAMHSA Treatment Referral Helpline, 1-877-SAMHSA7 (1-877-726-4727)
National Alliance on Mental Illness - https://www.nami.org/

For more information about the Silent Presence Podcast you can visit: https://silentpresencepodcast.com/

May 17, 2020

Former TV Anchor, Podcast Host & Author, Larry Camp Talks About Being Optimistic in a Pessimistic World.

Larry Camp is a former TV anchor, podcast host, author and public speaker. He talks about his upbringing in the Mormon religion and complicated past, the tragic loss of his son and family struggles throughout his life. He considers himself an average guy with a not-so-average life. You’ll learn about his difficult life and how it is to survive in this chaotic world. Larry talks about how to remain optimistic in a pessimistic world and how to address life’s common and uncommon dilemmas. His goal is to leave those who hear his message with an attitude and desire to accomplish hard things.

Larry spent 22 years in corporate America in the quick oil change business with responsibility for over one hundred locations and over one thousand employees. He considers himself a professional motivator with the ability to instill a WANT TO rather than a HAVE TO attitude to the task(s) at hand.

  • 01:48 – Larry Camp talks about his former relationships, family and growing up in the Mormon religion
  • 04:56 – The Mormon Mission at the age of 19
  • 08:35 – Larry talks about his realization of his religion and his change in viewpoint
  • 09:45 – Brother becomes paralyzed and Larry’s problems begin stacking up
  • 10:16 – Larry gets divorced in the Mormon church
  • 11:32 – Larry’s parents get divorced. Shelf with problems starts bowing
  • 11:50 – Questions about his own upbringing and belief in the church
  • 15:43 – Son, Dusty, begins to get stomach pains and soon passes away
  • 19:00 – Informing other son about the loss of his brother very painful
  • 20:20 – Son couldn’t handle stress of the loss of his brother and begins using drugs again
  • 22:50 – Celebration of Life for Dusty
  • 25:50 – Son gets arrested and sent to jail
  • 28:00 – Recovery in prison and how well it’s working
  • 29:20 – What was Dusty like
  • 32:00 – You can let problems in life effect you in a positive or negative way. Remaining optimistic in a pessimistic world
  • 34:00 – Doing positive things while dealing with grief and loss
  • 36:00 – Brother, Jeff, gets cancer and passes away
  • 37:24 – Nobody Knows…They Just Want You To Think They Do
  • 39:25 – Jack of all friggin’ trades. Never give up
  • 41:00 – Smiling is important…Being happy is important
  • 43:00 – Now is a great time to listen to podcasts. You need joy in life
  • 44:00 – Larry’s podcast: Nobody Knows Larry Camp

In his book, “Nobody Knows, They Just Want You to Think They Do,” Larry takes you on a journey through his life, his own unique experiences, and resolutions that he believes readers will find helpful. His book is available on his website, https://nobodyknowslarrycamp.com/  You can also listen to his podcast, “Nobody Knows Your Story,” at https://nobodyknowslarrycamp.com/#podcast 

For more information about Larry Camp or this podcast, be sure to visit my website at https://silentpresencepodcast.com/

May 8, 2020

Mindset Coach, Marquita Myrick Talks Mental Health and Handling Stress During Covid 19

On today's episode of Silent Presence, Marquita Myrick discusses mental health, stress and coping methods during Covid-19. She provides tips for teachers, students and especially parents during this period of time. Topics include dealing with grief and the importance of keeping open lines of communication with family and friends. Some other topics discussed are depression to managing stress and anxiety, addressing trauma, life adjustments, coping after grief and loss, motivation, self-esteem and confidence, and career related issues (especially burnout).

Marquita Myrick is a Licensed Professional Counselor, Mindset Coach and creator of the “Breaking Mindset Barriers for Professional Counselors” coaching program. She is dedicated to assisting counselors in reigniting their passion through burnout recovery and mindset transformation. By creating safe spaces for persons to heal, Marquita has assisted hundreds of individuals in improving their mental health and now focuses on supporting counselors in removing limiting beliefs that hold their passion hostage. 

  • 01:37 – Depression and managing stress during a pandemic
  • 05:15 – Anxiety can be the “silent killer”
  • 07:25 – What people can do for others who are dealing with anxiety and depression
  • 11:47 – Limiting time and amount of news you’re watching
  • 13:50 – Why you should listen to Silent Presence Podcast during this time
  • 15:00 – Setting boundaries when dealing with times like this
  • 17:32 – Now is a perfect time to practice personal development
  • 21:45 – Healthcare issues during Covid-19
  • 23:14 – Pay attention to others who may be suffering from depression and anxiety
  • 26:00 – How to best deal with children during this time. Connecting with classmates
  • 29:26 – Focus on the positive. More family time, family dinners, spending time with one another
  • 32:01 – Using zoom and other forms of social media to stay connected to family and friends
  • 33:50 – Loss and moving forward. Job loss included
  • 37:05 – There are different types of grief
  • 39:16 – Homeschooling, parenting, teaching at this time
  • 43:13 – Not everyone handles times like this the same way
  • 44:34 – Marquita Myrick talks about being a Mindset Coach and dealing with burnout
  • 45:50 - The Freedom-Craving Woman's Guide to Burnout Recovery: 5 Signs Blocking Your Healing"

Marquita Myrick can be reached:

Link to "The Freedom-Craving Woman's Guide to Burnout Recovery: 5 Signs Blocking Your Healing":  http://www.marquitamyrick.com/recovery/

Be sure to visit Silent Presence Podcast at: https://silentpresencepodcast.com/
April 28, 2020

Bad Widow, Alison Pena, Talks About Overcoming Grief and Strategies for Living Powerfully

Alison Pena, an international speaker, life legacy consultant, author of "Grief, Navigating the 3 levels of loss" and creator of "The Affluence Code," shares her insights, experiences and strategies for living powerfully. Alison was married to her husband David for 25 years. When he was diagnosed with Stage 4 pancreatic cancer and was given only a short time to live, they decided to live fully every minute of every day. 

Preparing for loss like this was an impossible thing to do. Becoming a widow only led Alison to a loss of energy, memory and drowning in a seemingly endless landscape of grief and despair. Despite her many challenges, Alison continued to look for and find solutions. She took baby steps to expand her capacity proactively and was able to get back on her feet again through writing, blogging and speaking engagements. Throughout this podcast, Alison will share her insights, experiences and strategies for living powerfully. 

Alison Pena can be reached at https://badwidow.com/ where you can receive 1 on 1 Bad Widow consulting and take a Free Living (Really Living) After Loss Assessment and learn where you stand on healing from within, reinventing yourself and rebuilding your supportive community now.

  • 01:28 – Alison discusses the loss of her former husband, David, after 25 years of marriage
  • 03:02 – Fact: You will lose someone in your life and you will eventually pass away
  • 04:40 – Deciding to live the remainder of our lives to the fullest
  • 06:37 – Living Fearlessly and living life despite the inevitable. Not just a widow or a caregiver
  • 08:04 – You don’t know what you can handle. The hospital was not an option. Home was the option for the remaining days
  • 09:09 – Dealing with loss. Life is short, life is precious. Live like today is the last
  • 12:20 – Loss during the second year
  • 14:03 – Three levels of loss and the best ways to navigate through them
  • 18:50 – People either step up, step back or step out
  • 21:00 – People need direction in how to deal with other’s grief. They need to be trained
  • 24:05 – Being clear with others about your needs and wants for dealing with grief
  • 29:33 – Compartmentalizing and not dealing with the grief
  • 31:39 – Rebuilding your community of people in your life
  • 33:30 – My loss is worse than your loss. Your loss is worse than mine
  • 36:15 – Being that Silent Presence. The ripple effect and paying it forward
  • 37:46 – Alison Pena future books, presentations and speaking engagements

For more information about the Silent Presence Podcast visit https://silentpresencepodcast.com/

Intro/Outro music courtesy of Purple Planet Music (Dreamcatcher)

April 18, 2020

Recovering Addict Awarded by the FBI Sends Message of Self-Improvement and Spirituality

Silent Presence is a weekly podcast where people share personal stories of addiction, mental health, grief, hope and their journey moving forward.

On this episode of Silent Presence, Rich Patricia speaks with author and public speaker, Ed Kressy about his twenty year battle with addiction and how he finds happiness in his daily life. He spent months in jail, and years in destitution. His final eleven devastating years of addiction to methamphetamine resulting in agonizing psychosis, including extreme paranoia around the FBI.

After getting clean in 2008, he discovered: Just because you're done with drugs, doesn't mean drugs are done with you. He continued to battle severe mental health challenges. In 2019 he received the Director's Community Leadership Award from FBI Director Christopher Wray. 

His inspiring transformation is the subject of his book, My Addiction & Recovery: Just Because You're Done with Drugs, Doesn't Mean Drugs Are Done with You (Lifestyle Entrepreneurs Press, April 2020). His book is available by visiting his website at www.edkressy.com

Ed is currently a volunteer for the FBI and Police Department of San Francisco where he helps those who are affected by incarceration and addiction. He often volunteers many hours in California state prisons for organizations that deliver training and entrepreneurship and employment for currently and formerly incarcerated individuals.

  • 03:08 – Ed talks about his upbringing and how drug addiction affects everyone
  • 03:59 – Ed discusses his addiction to methamphetamine and his life as a functional addict
  • 05:01 – Discussion about gratitude and the lack of gratitude during this dark period of time
  • 06:12 – Talk about finding gratitude, spirituality, self-improvement and service to others
  • 07:00 – The value of living after addiction
  • 08:15 – Ed’s beliefs created his circumstances in life
  • 08:45 – Ed’s Silent Presence and those people who played an important role in his life
  • 12:03 – Kindness and the importance of empathy in life
  • 13:47 – Ed talks about his experiences with the FBI, both good and bad times
  • 18:04 – Ed discusses his darkest moment in his addictive life and that “Wow Moment”
  • 21:43 – Experience with the 12-step program and how life changed
  • 24:15 – Breaking the stigma of addiction, overcoming obstacles and living beautiful lives
  • 25:20 – Ed talks about his previous arrests and bad experiences in life
  • 27:45 – Drugs are a problem but not THE problem. Underlying issues leading to drug abuse
  • 29:04 – Ed discusses relapsing and why recovering addicts relapse
  • 31:02 – What is going through the mind of an addict
  • 33:17 – Spiritual teaching saved me from suicide
  • 34:47 – Ed discusses his daily practices for staying healthy and why they’re important
  • 37:00 – Ed talks about himself as an author and writer
  • 38:50 – Finding happiness and striving for happiness
  • 40:00 – The good we put out into the world comes back to us
  • 41:25 – Ed talks about the prison system and those who are incarcerated and discrimination
  • 41:55 – The prisoners who Ed works with are human beings and should be treated as such
  • 44:12 – Educating others provides Ed with value in life
  • 45:30 – Ed talks about his life NOW
  • 47:50 – How to get in touch with Ed or obtain a copy of his book

For more information about the Silent Presence Podcast visit https://silentpresencepodcast.com/

Intro/Outro music courtesy of Purple Planet Music (Dreamcatcher)