Category Archives: Recognition

Liebster Award

Liebster Award logo

Thank you to Sue at My BiPolar Adventures for her gracious and thoughtful nomination. If you’re like me and LOVE to know the origins of things, check out this exposé on the Liebster award.

Otherwise …

Rules of the Liebster Award.

My 11 Questions From ‘Sue, With Answers-

1.   What is your absolute, without-a-doubt favorite movie of all-time (and what is it about this movie that makes it your favorite?) Yeah, I know.  That was sneaky.   😉

Spartacus. Because in real life, I’m a gladiator.

2.   How long have you been blogging?

I’ve been blogging since February, 2015.

3.   What kind of impact has blogging had on your life?

My site is primarily about my hauntings with Specter – the personification of my deep depression, as well as my suicide attempt in September of 2014. I also blog about my faith, which has been a huge  and now that I’ve been through the

4.   So far, what has been your greatest triumph in life?

I performed at the Circus Maximas

5.   What is your dream job (and why)?  I know, I know.  I did it again.  😉


6.   Favorite band?  (I know I’d have trouble with this one so I’ll allow you 3, haha.)

Five Finger Death Punch (Bullet for My Valentine and Black Veil Brides)

7.   How would you describe your personality?

During the day I’m introverted and a dork. At night I’m a gladiator.

8.   What is your favorite thing (personality trait, talent, physical feature, etc.) about yourself?  Yep, you guessed it – and why?

I don’t know what my favorite thing about me is, but I’ll tell you what it AIN’T – my nose…because I used to think it was large and hook-like. 

9.   How do you feel about medication (mental illness-wise)?

If it makes me feel better, I’m going to most likely take it. I would rather take a medication that lifts the grey I live with, than not take it and chance Specter leaving his rusty cage.

10.  What’s your favorite personality trait in others (what draws you to certain people?)

I like people that drive on the right-hand side (U.S.-specific) of the road when they’re going under the speed limit.

11.  Did you enjoy answering these questions?  I sure hope so!

 Yes I did, Sue! Thank you for nominating me 🙂

My Nominations- (you can nominate a minimum of 5 and a maximum of 11)

Granted all of you probably have a great deal more than 200 followers. I chose you because through our conversations, I’ve built a lasting friendship with each of you. You have supported me. You have taken your time to post in my Comments section. And I’ve taken away a piece from each of your blogs.

1.   Morgueticiaatoms

2.   Sassafrass, the Feisty

3.   Hi, I’m Dan

4.   Transparent Honesty

5.   Caterpillar To Butterfly

6.   lunafey18

7.   abbiegirl

8.   KatieComeBack

9.   Brain Sponge Blog

10. memeethemuse

11. Dear Hope

My Questions for My Nominees-

1.   In what state and/or country do you live (if outside the U.S.)?

2.   What is your favorite genre of music and THE band that goes with it?

3.   What is a life quote of yours?

4.   Where do you find solace?

5.   What are three triggers you have?

6.   Insert your favorite meme in the space below-

7.   What is a coping mechanism you use to combat your mental situation?

8.   When you sit down to write a blog post, where does your inspiration come from?

9.   Right here, right now, say something to the person who has hurt you the most, beginning with, “I promise to…”

10. What one regret do you hold onto that you wish you could let go of?

11. What’s the most valuable piece of advice someone has given to you?


Posted by on 07/19/2015 in Recognition


Tags: , ,

The Dragon’s Loyalty Award

Image of a dragon looking at a red headed maiden.

Dragons – the mightiest of the signs in the Chinese zodiac. 

“They are dominant and ambitious. Dragons prefer to live by their own rules and if left on their own, are usually successful. They’re driven, unafraid of challenges, and willing to take risks. They’re passionate in all they do and they do things in grand fashion. Unfortunately, this passion and enthusiasm can leave Dragons feeling exhausted and interestingly, unfulfilled.

“While Dragons frequently help others, rarely will they ask for help. Others are attracted to Dragons, especially their colorful personalities, but deep down, Dragons prefer to be alone. Perhaps that is because they’re most successful when working alone. Their preference to be alone can come across as arrogance or conceitedness, but these qualities aren’t applicable. Dragons have tempers that can flare fast!”


This award is dedicated to the loyal fan/commenter, whether the recipient is a fellow blogger or just someone who follows and comments regularly.  I am gracious to Chelise of Caterpillar to Butterfly for nominating me for this award. I had fun with this. 

Here are the rules:

  • Display the award certificate on your website.

  • Announce your win with a post and link to whomever presented you with the award.

  • Present 15 awards to deserving bloggers.

  • Drop them a comment to tip them off after you’ve linked them in the post.

  • Post 7 interesting things about yourself.

In turn here are my 15 nominees:

1.  Sassafrass, the Feisty

2.  morgueticiaatoms

3.  Hi, I’m Dan

4.  Gentle Kindness

5.  dimdaze

6.  A Frayed Knot

7.  Brighton Bipolar

8.  My Bipolar Adventures

9.  Cinnia’s World

10. Recovery from Depression and Anxiety

11. Minds Like Ours

12. Not Quite Lost

13. Viladev

14. Turning the Page on Suicide

15. Dear Hope

Here are my 7 facts about me:

1. I am a Leo, so along with the dragon, I am supersized for loyalty. Beware, Leos hold grudges forever.

2. I played drums for 12 years. Four of those were in the U.S. Marine Corps band.


3. I own my own interior art business, Willoughby Wonders. You can find it on Facebook.

rock band_002

4. I like to play Rockband with my friends.

5. I am self-conscious of my nose.


6. I have a lop-eared bunny, Vanessa.

drawing of beach

7. I like to draw.


Posted by on 07/15/2015 in Recognition


Tags: , , ,

10 Loves/Hates [REBLOG]

Thank you for this nomination Tessa 🙂 Though I had done this in a post a month or two ago, I still wanted to honor your challenge and thank you for thinking of me. Here goes…

10 Things I Love-

1.   Girls in white dresses with blue satin sashes. Snowflakes that stay on my nose and eyelashes.

2.   I love Thursdays. They’re like the new Friday.

3.   Hot wings. Yeah. Love them.

4.   Rock band. Pretty much.

5.   Rock and Metal: Avenged Sevenfold, Five Finger Death Punch, Bullet for My Valentine, Black Veil Brides, Tool, Pop Evil, Ra. Aggressive guitars and thunder drums. I like to understand my lyrics though. Don’t go for stuff much harder than that.

6.   My daughter.

7.   My bunny. That’s right, imma 41 year old male with a free-range, litter-trained bunny. She’s a black and white English lop and she has a diet of water, dark, leafy greens, western Timothy hay, varmint food, and electrical cords.

8.   Yard sales. Yeah, I just said that.

9.   When my gas gauge says “0 miles left” and I make it another 1.5 miles to the gas station.

10. My Adderall. Yup, it makes the next 10 things possible to stand…

10 Things I Hate-

1.   I went to pull several paper towels off the roll today and the last one didn’t rip evenly! Like, one of its corners is still on the roll. I hate that.

2.   When someone springs something on me last minute. Not hitting the happy note there.

3.   My 2008 Ford Focus. It’s one step away from being held together with duck tape. I just have to find it in blue.

4.   As soon as I get home after work and someone comes banging on my door.

5.   When I call you and leave a detailed message and as soon as I hang up you call back. “Saw that you called”. smh.

6.   When the toilet seat is left down.

7.   When my water gets turned off. By. The. City.

8.   When I’m shaving my lip and the razor nicks me right where my nostril meets the upper portion of my lip. Totally el-suckwad.

9.   That you can’t use both sides of the toilet paper.

10. Hangnails. Should’ve probably put that one first.

How about you? Are you up to taking the challenge? Maybe a few thoughts in the Comments section?


Posted by on 07/03/2015 in Humor, Recognition



3 Days, 3 Quotes Challenge | Day 3

Thank you to Dan for nominating me for this challenge and pushing me to become a better blogger. Please check out his site and the challenge at –

Roaring lion with Bible scripture, There is a story behind this quote. And it’s found in the halls of the Virginia Beach Juvenile/Domestic courthouse.

Courage. I was afraid at how the events would unfold.

Strength. I was weak of heart.

Having to stand in front of a judge for false accusations regarding visitation issues with my daughter.

I got up slowly that day. Cautiously. And sat down at my kitchen table to spend my Quiet Time in my devotionals. This time always has a calming effect on me and helps me to reorient my compass no matter the situation.

Today was no exception.

So I prayed and said, “Lord, let your will be done.” That was it. That’s all it took.

The devotional for that day was focused around this verse. For the rest of the day I was calmly assured that things would work out. I didn’t know how. But they did.

Dan asked that I nominate three other bloggers for this challenge. There are several more than that whom I know you will be blessed to hear what they have to say, and I cannot just limit it to three.

♦  Each of you will nominate three others who will do the same to repeat the process.

♦  You will have three days to post three quotes.

♦  Dan told a story behind each of his quotes. And I used visuals for mine with a short blurb behind it. The format is up to you.

Have fun!

Here are my nominations-

sassafrass the feisty







Tags: ,

3 Days, 3 Quotes Challenge | Day 2

Thank you to Dan for nominating me for this challenge and pushing me to become a better blogger. Please check out his site and the challenge at –

This quote is the mantra of Surviving the Specter.

It was born from a thought I had while I was in the psychiatric institute after I hanged myself. It has been a long road, but after years of work, I’ve been able to give myself grace.

This quote has allowed me to learn to take it easier on myself.

I hope you are able to use it in your own life.

Image of broken mirror and cracked heart with quote reading


Posted by on 06/30/2015 in Quotes, Recognition


Tags: , ,

3 Days, 3 Quotes Challenge | Day 1

Thank you to Dan for nominating me for this challenge and pushing me to become a better blogger. Please check out his site and the challenge at –

Be on the lookout, because you may be the next one to receive the challenge.

Image showing little red riding hood and the wolf with quote saying, "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."

Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.



The Liebster Award


I would like to graciously and humbly thank Rose with Thorns for nominating me for this award. It is awarded to blogs with less than 500 followers. Anna asked me the following questions (bold), and I’ve followed with my answers in non-bold text:

1.   What scared you as a child but is humorous now? As a toddler, I grew up outside of a naval base. This base was home to fighter jets. Really loud fighter jets. They would soar over our neighborhood and would terrify me. My mom loves to tell the story of a time when I was scared so much I tried running out the back of our house from the living room. Not even thinking to open them, I ran full force into the sliding glass doors and was knocked back onto the floor. Pretty humorous mom. Pretty humorous.

2.   What television or movie character do you relate the most to? Indiana Jones. Definitely.

3.   What are three words you would use to describe where you live? “Beachy” and “four seasons”. I live in Norfolk, VA, USA.

4.   If you could move anywhere, where would you go? If I was single and didn’t have a daughter, it would definitely be Australia. I went there once for two weeks when I was a Marine stationed in Okinawa, Japan. I loved it and have always wanted to return.

5.   What makes you laugh? Jim Gaffigan. Jim Gaffigan makes me laugh.

6.   What makes you cry? When I was much younger I used to try to save birds from my cat. The birds were always wounded and I tried my best to nurse them back to health. They usually died. That always made me cry.

7.   Do you prefer sticking to a schedule or making things up as you go through the day? Stick to a schedule. Not having a schedule makes me anxious. I don’t have to necessarily stick to every item on that schedule, but I like to have items that serve as goals throughout the day. I like lists.

8.   What was your favorite vacation memory? Family camping was always my favorite vacation memory.

9.   If you were an animal, what would you be? I imagine I would be a wombat. I’m tired a lot and could probably sleep during the day. I’m more alert at night. My eating habits are poor – I have a fixation for large portions and junk food, and when I’m nervous or depressed, I graze like a field animal. I’m not sure if that’s similar to the “bulldozer of Australia”, but I know they like to burrow under farm fences and eat crops.

10.  What is your favorite name? I’m fond of my daughter’s name, Lexie.

11.  How often do you blog? How often do you want to blog? I used to blog daily, sometimes several times a day. Recently I’ve been blogging probably 1-2 times per week. I would like to blog daily or at the minimum, 2-3 times per week. I would also like to think of a way to put my content on You Tube. This may not be the ideal blog for You Tube posts so this ideas may come out of a future project. Right now Surviving the Specter is attached to Twitter and it can be a challenge to stay on top of both platforms. I need to be more involved in Twitter since I’m not using it to my best advantage.


Here are the bloggers that I nominate for this award:

Letters to Their Father

Transparent Honesty – One Strong Soul

All you need to do is answer the questions below, display this award on your blog, and nominate more people (usually eleven) who have under 500 followers. Here are my questions to my nominees:

  1. How would you describe your blog content to someone who has not read it? 
  2. What inspired you to begin blogging? 
  3. What have you learned about yourself from blogging? 
  4. What one piece of advice about blogging can you give to someone based on your experience?



Once a Victim, Now a Survivor [Award]


Once a Victim ~ Now a Survivor Award

once a victim now a survivor award

I  would like to thank Rose with Thorns, who nominated my blog for this award. This award is for those who have gone through mental illness of any kind, abuse, trauma, and especially PTSD. Here are the rules:

  1. Thank the blogger that nominated you
  2. Nominate 7 or more bloggers whom you feel deserve the award
  3. Post 5 questions for your nominees to answer (you may use the same as these below)
  4. Inform your nominees and post a comment in their blog to let them know they’ve been nominated


The questions for me were the following:

1.  What is your favorite post that you wrote? My most powerful post, the one that started this blog, is titled, My Story. It gives the account of my suicide attempt. I wrote this post because I want others who struggle with the same feelings, to know that they are not alone.

2.  How do you find motivation to write? My motivation to write comes from several sources:

♦   My experiences. I try to share as many of my own experiences as possible. Whether they be the struggles I had on weekends, or how I felt in my marriage, these are the fabric of my blog.

♦   Quotes. I like to use quotes to spread my message. I use a few original templates that I’ve created so there is a feeling of consistency and familiarity to my readers, and so people can focus on the message. All of these can be found by accessing the “Quotes” category on my blog.

♦   Music videos. I love music. If a song pertains to the theme of my blog I will use it in a post. All of these can be found by accessing the “Video” category on my blog.

♦   Poetry. Sometimes I’ll have a verse pop into my head when I’m reading or working on a current post. I’ll immediately start a new post and either finish the poem in a few minutes or come back to it at a later time. Sometimes the flow comes naturally and sometimes it needs to work itself out over time. “So whAt” is one such example. I was thinking of someone who was having a rough day and kept dropping things, or tripping, and whose day was just falling apart. In their clamor, they more and more felt that they were going crazy and I wanted to show that there were reasons for why this was happening…it wasn’t just coincidence. Stress, anxiety, PTSD, etc., all cause these things to happen.

I’ve also written saga-like poetry that reads over time. The Specter series was one such four-part installment that dealt with the personification of my depression and the struggle I face between the forces of despair and hope.

I also started a series dedicated to my girlfriend’s PTSD, called “I’m Getting Her PTSD“. It’s a play on words and I write a verse every time I “get”, or understand something about her PTSD. I used a play on words that may have suggested that her PTSD was spreading to me but the reader gets a different view by the end of each verse.

♦   Other posts. Sometimes I get inspiration from reading other people’s posts. “I Thought of You” is one such example. I was reading a post in my reader someone had written about facing the realities of suicide. A quick line jumped into my head and in a few minutes it had matured into the two-verse poem I posted. When writing these particular poems, I like to write about the situation in the first verse, and then use the second verse to speak hope. That’s a common theme I use.

♦   My Faith. I post faith-based quotes, scripture, and journal excerpts under the “Faith for Hope” tab. This has been a large part of my healing process and has been the one thing that has allowed me to live through my depression through a state of grace.

3.  If you could have any super power, what would it be? Being able to hold a conversation in public. I’m really an introverted person of few words. Conversations can be awkward for me.

4.  Who inspired you growing up? I had a high school history teacher and drum instructor who inspired me while growing up. My history teacher used these words that intrigued me and made me want to learn. My drum instructor was a mentor and father-figure to me. They both taught me so much about life and striving to be better.

5.  What makes you super excited? It makes me excited to know that at least one person has come away from my blog with hope. With feeling that they are not alone. With knowing that even though they may not feel like reaching out, there are people who will extend themselves because they’ve been where they are.


Here are the inspiring bloggers that I nominate:

And here are their questions:

  1. When did you start your blog and what inspired you? 
  2. What types of blogs do you follow?
  3. How many revisions does it take before you push the publish button?
  4. What’s the best thing about you and what have you learned from blogging? 
  5. Do you have other blogs?




Fantasy Author's Handbook

Advice for authors of fantasy, science fiction, and horror

Nicholas C. Rossis

Award-winning, dream-protecting author

The Bipolar Writer Mental Health Blog

A Collaborative Mental Health Blog


Life hacks, fashion and beauty tips, photography, health gyan, poetry and heartfelt musings about everything and anything under the sun!

Grace The Nurse

Health Educator for the New Millenium

Inner-Missions PLLC

"A Journey of Self-Discovery: Remembering Who You Are"

Land of Oyr

The home of Εpic Fantasy world by author Viel Nast, information about upcoming books, history of Land of Oyr, Epic Metal, Epic books and more!

Making Maps: DIY Cartography

Resources and Ideas for Making Maps


Gathering a Community of Worldbuilders

The Wild Heart of Life

Creative Nonfiction & Poetry

Dyson's Dodecahedron

Award Winning Dungeon Design

Fantasy In Motion

Live by the pen, die by the sword...

The Cool Mama

Adventures in gaming

ars phantasia

reflections on fantasy cartography & game design

The World according to Dina

Notes on Seeing, Reading & Writing, Living & Loving in The North

Kristen Lamb

Author, Blogger, Social Media Jedi

flashlight batteries - Ali Grimshaw

writing circles & poetry to keep your light on

Lucky Rabbit's Foot

... not so lucky for the rabbit!

Owning It

Claiming boyhood, staring down sexual abuse. © Brian Dennis 2019


some scars can’t be seen

English-Language Thoughts

English-Language Thoughts

Rochelle Wisoff-Fields-Addicted to Purple

Growing older is inevitable. Growing up is optional.

Sound Bite Fiction

where nothing is quite what it seems

Discover WordPress

A daily selection of the best content published on WordPress, collected for you by humans who love to read.

From the Darkness into the Sunshine

sexual abuse,survivor,healing,life as whole

The Cotswold Company Blog

The Cotswold Company Blog, inspiring homes with beautiful furniture and interior design ideas.

Lynn Thaler

"The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way that its animals are treated." (Ghandi)

Crown Print

a book blog

Speak Out Society

Speak up, even if your voice shakes.


Raising Awareness About Life


My experiences with autism, depression, and life

Al Levin's Mental Health Website

From Podcasting to Blogging to Public Speaking and Coaching...


Br Andrew's Muses

From head to pen - A great site

Shortness of Breadth

Two Angels and a Black Dog

The journey of a single mum with bipolar

Tanushree Karmakar


Truth Vindicator

Liberating truth and free thought with words of wisdom, wit and wonder

Joys of Joel

The Poetry of My Life through My Writings and Journeys

Someday Tomorrow

On a journey to a happier place

%d bloggers like this: