Author: Josh Murray

I am 31 and a writer by nature and trade. I have a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism from SIUC so I am both personally and professionally dedicated and passionate about what I do. I also enjoy reading and playing music. I am married with three sons.

What’s In a Name? “Manic Depression” or “Bipolar Disorder?

I have not outwardly been attacked or “judged” for suffering from bipolar disorder, but it’s the under-the-surface opinions people have that make it even more difficult to manage. So, judge me, I say.

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A Slight Return to the Madness

Of course, it’s been one of “those” weeks: work started back up (yards needed to be mowed). On top of that, I spent Wednesday and Thursday in bed, depressed as usual (I wish people knew what it meant to literally not be able to get out of bed).

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You Walk on Eggshells, I Walk Thru Fire

Someone close to me recently had their first panic attack and described it as the most frightening experience of their life. Equating it to what a mental/emotional/physical heart attack might hypothetically feel like, it was evident that this person had been truly affected by this incident. And not in any positive way.

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And They’re Coming to Take Me Away Now: A Rant

As someone with bipolar disorder, I have a lot of experience in feeling awkward or out of place because of my condition, when said condition is known. It’s nothing new, and although it never “gets easier” you learn to go along with it. Sometimes you got to get ahead of the charade before you become the charade.

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The End of the Whole Mess

If it hadn’t happened to me and if it wasn’t true, it might almost be comical. Last time I was here blogging I was describing the tranquility needed at the end of a trip of any sort. If you remember, my family and I extended our little getaway an extra day to be used only to recharge and recuperate. Which I guess in theory sounded great. It really did. That was right up until the next morning before we checked out.

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Another Pause: The Little Things

So, we decided to stay another night just to have a full evening of recovery and relaxation (reading for me) before we make the seven-hour plus drive home. We’ve had a full day of family fun and it seemed like a no-brainer to take a night to unwind before we headed home; no need in going home so worn out that the trip becomes something we want to forget. Also, we all seemed to be excited at the idea of just getting to sit around and read or write or color.

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Meditation: Could it Work for Me?

Though I’ve never found any of the generic “coping skills” that work for me, I have noticed that meditation is on every list. Just another bullet point: mediation.

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10 Essential Writing Tips from Stephen King’s “On Writing”

In 2002 Stephen King temporarily gave up on writing bestselling novels and wrote a little book chronicling his rise to fame and discussing exactly … 10 Essential Writing Tips from Stephen King’s “On Writing”

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A Pause for the Cause

We’ve done very little as far as “touristy” things go, to be honest, but that’s been just fine with me. I come down here enough to know that this is the part of the trip that matters.

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OPINION: Mental Health & the Divine? (Just a Pitch)

A newly released study is tying people’s religious uncertainty and lack of faith in the divine to poor mental and psychological well-being.

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Happy Birthday, Jack!

When I was 14 (as cliché as this is going to sound), I read a series of books that either opened up doors for me or that I just liked. And again (as cliché as it sounds), On the Road was one of them. Of course, it was a book that changed the playing field, but for me, it was the introduction to a bigger world.

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A Much-Needed Getaway

My wife and I just celebrated our 4-year anniversary a couple of days ago, so we decided to give ourselves a little gift: a weekend getaway. Nothing major. Just a weekend in a cabin in the hills of Tennessee.

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The Day My Life Changed Forever…

Today isn’t just St. Patrick’s Day in my home. Today is one of the most special days in my life, as it marks the 4th anniversary of the day I married my soulmate.

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An Inconvenient Truth: Shame, Regret, and My Ugly Theory

If this were of any consequence and if I were a person of any significance, this one certain belief/opinion I have regarding a specific matter I hold would most likely be considered controversial or just plain ignorant. No, it’s not political, or derogatory in any other fashion. It’s a simple idea on what some may call a “philosophical” matter, but for me, it’s really a non-issue.

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Telehealth: The Good vs the Bad

When COVID made its grand debut back in early 2020, no one was sure how serious it was going to be. That is until there was a massive shortage of things like milk, bread and toilet paper (in my area it was a complete wipeout). But no one expected the breadth of things to come until people’s personal health and medical treatment were on the line.

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a day in the life: one day at a time

First off, work is picking back up as the warmer weather is (maybe) finally starting to settle in. I work for both a lawncare and a construction company. Yards will need to be mowed; houses will need to be built or repaired. Things are about to pick up and get busy. It’ll be mornings of rushing to get the kids shipped out to whoever is watching them on that day by 6 am. It’ll be the “get-up-and-go” this household really needs.

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On the Fear of Death, Dying, & Drowning

It’s a subject as old as time, and a personal dilemma everyone experiences at some point in their lives: the fear of death and dying.

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Food for Thought: Blogging and its Impact on the Brain

If the mind is truly like a muscle, then blogging must be the last leg of a 10-mile race. That might seemf like hyperbole, but it’s actually based in some reality.

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And then there was Ketamine…

I did my first round a few months ago and I could tell an immediate difference. But the farther apart each treatment is the less effective it will be.

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a day in the life: oh, sweet depression

It’s been one of those days, and if it’s anything like the last half of yesterday then you can count me out.

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And Don’t Go Out Smiling: A Poem

And don’t go out smiling-
In the reverie of death’s sweet delivery,
a smile would only cloud,
and be monstrous….

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H. Town: A Poem

If these city blocks could talk, would you hear the hollow echo of my soul’s soles, edging around the lonely buildings, thru the twisted and deformed night?

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Bipolar Disorder in the Workplace

I would say I can’t be the only one with bipolar disorder who knows how well this disease operates under the pressures of a job and workplace, but I already know that I’m not; it’s a topic that is oftent used when writing about bipolar disorder. It may seem like a tired beat, and I certainly do not have anything new to add to the conversation. My experiences are not uncommon or unique. They are just mine. But I’m assuming you already know that if you’re here reading this.

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Sex, Drugs, and Stupidity: My Manic Self

It’s cliche, yes, but nonetheless it comes with the territory. Part metaphors, part exaggeration, “sex, drugs, and mania” pretty much sums up my personal experience with the dangerous and unpredictable nature of the madness.

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When the Music’s Over, Turn Out the Lights

As a musician and just as a human being on a very basic level, music is a key part of my every day. I’m making no correlation between the madness and the necessity of music in one’s life, it’s just a fact: music is a key part of my life.

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a day in the life: manic monday

“If I can’t feel, if I can’t move, if I can’t think, and I can’t care, then what conceivable point is there in living?” – Kay Redfield Jamison It’s been a pretty “blah” week on my end of things, personally and professionally that is. My wife has been sick, so I’ve tried to pick up…

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Old Age, or Something Like It

You know that expression “You don’t know what you got until it’s gone”? Well, boy, is it true!

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a day in the life: dreams to remember

My life, though, for the sake of only a little bit of remembrance, appears to me in broken, fragmented passages of cloudy polaroids. But I do think there is something special in the knowing – the remembrance – of one’s life.

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March Only Comes Once a Year

Having bipolar disorder is like standing on the edge of a cliff in a thunderstorm: there’s an intense beauty about it, but ultimately in the end it’s just not a good idea. And that’s okay. It’s a well-known fact that if you play with fire, you just might get burned.

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In Through The Out Door

I have recently (and finally) set out to work on a “bigger project” I’ve imagined for some time now. I’ve only just gotten to the point in attempting to pursue this particular endeavor after both exhaustive research and personal experience.

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Chaos: The Downside to the Downward Spiral

I’m not entirely sure what the actual verbatim textbook definition of the word “chaos” is, but I know for me it can only be described as a constant state of mental confusion and disorganization that leaves me in a place of total loss.

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They Didn’t Break The Mold With Me

In our modern day and age it can be easy to get wrapped up in oneself under even the most “typical” or “normal” circumstances. But when graced with a mental illness, any mental illness, those of us afflicted can sometimes really get lost in our own slanted egos.

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a day in the life: mind over mania

“You know how most illnesses have symptoms you can recognize? Well, with manic depression, it’s sexual promiscuity, excessive spending, and substance abuse—and that just sounds like a fantastic weekend in Vegas to me!” – Carrie Fisher It seems the older I get the less I enjoy the mania. At one point in my life, though,…

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OPINION: Religious Radicalism Leads to Extremist Attack on Texas Synagogue

Antisemitism is nothing new in a world still all too familiar with the haunting images of the concentration camps of WWII and the emaciated survivors of the Holocaust. However, after the atrocities perpetrated by the Nazis on the Jewish people, it should be harder to believe we haven’t come a little bit farther as human beings.

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SPOTLIGHT: Kurt Cobain

Not all days are bad days, and sometimes I have nothing in particular I need or want to say. So, I started a little “Spotlight” segment in which I talk about someone of cultural prominence who suffers from bipolar disorder. The idea is to use a “poof”-style piece to shine a light on said chosen person. It’s a personal exercise and challenge, and also helps make this illness just a tad more relatable. This is my second “Spotlight” piece, the first of which was on Vincent Van Gogh.

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