Blog For Mental Health 2014: The Prologue

RubyIt’s official, loves.  2013 is over, 2014 is here.  We’ve all survived one more trip around the sun on this wild, spinning ball we call a planet.  It was a rough year for many of us, but it was a great year for a lot of us, too.  Whether you feel you had the former or the latter (or maybe a bit of each), you should be very proud of yourself, because you did make it through, and that’s not always as easy an accomplishment as one might think.

In any case, I’m proud of you, and I’m grateful for you, too. Whether you have made your way into my heart forever, or I am as yet unaware of your specific, individual existence — apart from the anonymous “visit” you register in our stat counter. (And if you happen to fall into that second group, please do say hello some time!)

Aside from tacking up new calendars and making resolutions, the beginning of 2014 signals something else pretty special, something that has grown more dear to me than I ever would have imagined when it began three years ago. . .

Blog For Mental Health 2014!

Now, my working hypothesis is that most of you are concerned today with just being able to finally draw a deep breath and begin to recover from the mass hysteria that consumes people during the holiday season.  That’s something that tends to affect all of us on at least a secondary level.

Which is why, while I am so excited about the Blog For Mental Health 2014 campaign, I’m not going to launch it at your heads on the first day of the year.  Even if no one else feels this way (and I think you do), I certainly need a few more days to catch my breath before I weigh anchor on this one.

So, Blog for Mental Health 2014 will launch officially on January 7th, just six days from today!  For the moment, I’ll give you a bit of a preview of what you can expect this year.

On a basic level, you’re going to find several important changes have been made concerning the way Blog For Mental Health is staged.  Nothing as far as the driving idea nor the spirit behind it, that will stay intact — as unquestionably it should.  But throughout Blog For Mental Health 2013, I was given a lot of feedback. Thoughts, concerns, and encouragements came both from those who participated, as well as those who, for various reasons, abstained from doing so.  I also gained a lot of practical knowledge through the process of coordinating the project.  From all of that, I have put together an easier, more streamlined pledge process, one which should make this year better in every way.  A few additional modifications are designed to make the whole thing more inclusive, and of interest to a greater number of people.  That’s my fervent hope, anyway!

Something else which is different this year concerns the Blog For Mental Health 2014 badge. Canvas co-founder and Blog For Mental Health creator Lulu was unable to design this year’s image, as she has done the past two years. Not having her wonderful creative stamp on this campaign is a bit strange for me, though the reason is not anything concerning (so don’t worry yourselves, loves!). The good news is that I was able to prevail upon a talented young local artist to design a piece for us. Two days before Christmas, I picked up the art for the Blog For Mental Health 2014 badge.  It’s unlike anything I would have ever dreamed up, and I’m very excited to unveil to all of you next week!

I want to thank everyone who participated in the 2013 project so much.  Reading each of your posts was incredibly inspiring, and seeing how many people participated, even late in to the year, was very gratifying.  The numbers were fantastic, and it honestly thrills me to see more and more individuals speaking up and sharing their experiences with mental illness.  There was not only strength on display, but grace and a quiet dignity woven throughout the threads of all of the pieces.  It makes me quite proud, and strengthens the hope I have that one day soon, anyone with a mental illness will be able to speak about it openly — free from the fear of being stigmatized and misunderstood.

Keep on fighting the good fight.

Also, don’t fret. While the 2013 Blogroll is disappearing for a few days, it will be back up in a special place with the official launch of 2014.

And of course remember to come right back here on January 7th, 2014! Mark your calendars, set a reminder on your phone, tie a string around your finger if you prefer.  Just be sure to be here when Blog For Mental Health 2014 gets underway!


BFMH 2012 & 2013

© Ruby Tuesday and A Canvas Of The Minds 2014. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this blog’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Ruby Tuesday and A Canvas Of The Minds with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.


20 thoughts on “Blog For Mental Health 2014: The Prologue

  1. Yay! So good to see you on the first day of 2014. Wishing you a year of vastly improved health and all the good things that come along with that blessing. Can’t wait to see the new BFMH badge! Thank you so much for being our Captain at the helm of Canvas, among so many other things. One of my resolutions is to be more active with Canvas (which means actually posting). I think I can handle the rotation calendar now that my SAD light has brought me mostly out of the apathetic fog I was dwelling in for so long.

    • Laura. . . I love you so much. I was honestly a little nervous. . . Okay, I was really effing concerned that I wouldn’t be up for this, with what the last three months have been for me. Which I haven’t even had a chance to write a proper post on, because as bad as you know it was, it got lots worse before it got better. But a miracle occurred the week before Christmas. . .

      But that does all belong in its own piece! I’m so happy to see you here, and even happier to know you’re feeling better, too! I’d love to see you posting here more than I could ever express. You keep me going with all your wonderful words, I hope you know. Blessings in the year ahead. ❤

      (Oh, I'm also kind of excited about the badge. It's quite different than what we've had before, and I hope everyone likes it at least half as much as I do!)

  2. Your working hypothesis is spot-on! Love it! And your amazing dedication to mental health and its awareness! Thank you! Cheers!

    • I knew it couldn’t just be me that need some recovery time, Jennifer! And thank you so much for your kind words, they mean a great deal to me, especially from you.

  3. Really looking forward to blog for mental health 2014 hope I can be a part of it again. Was such an honour pledging last year and hope to do it again this year 🙂

    • Marilyn, the honor was in what you did. Not (just) for us, but for helping to address stigma and raise awareness — which I know you do offline as well. I’d be grateful to see your pledge added to the 2014 Blogroll!

  4. I am completely thrilled about this. I’m so glad that it came together, despite me not being able to be so active this year. I am currently trying to get all of my technology hooked up, so that I can take a more active role. But, I elated that this all came to fruition, and it is thriving. Thank you to everyone who has participated in the past and to those who plan on participating in the future.

    • And I am thrilled and elated to see your lovely face here, as I know so many others will be! Having your words of celebration and encouragement puts the glow and polish on the days away official launch in the best way!

      • You can officially thank my husband and his present of my brand new tablet for Christmas. It makes this so accessible. And I’m super glad to be back. I’m going to admit, it’s going to be slow and choppy at first. But, it’s a huge priority this year to maintain this as a huge part of my life.

        • Well, tell him thanks from me! I’m just happy that you’re here. And the slow and choppy I totally get — having spent the last three months of 2013 feeling as though I was dying lent itself to (I think) a total of one piece on my personal blog in a fit of emotion, and getting back into it takes work! But at whatever speed in whatever way it happens, it happens, and that’s all that really matters.

          • I’m actually currently working on something for my personal blog. I mean drafted, up on my screen, in progress, not just some abstract. It will hopefully be up later tonight or tomorrow. I’m running on stolen time right now anyway. But, it’s off to work with me! Hi ho!

    • Jennifer, thank you so much! I can’t take credit for the idea, of course, but I am so excited to share this project for the second time, and I love that more and more people are discovering it!

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