Tina Szymczak

August 10, 2019

When I Grow Tired

Below is a poem I wrote while on my retreat to Prophry Island. Sometimes humour is a useful tool to cope. When I grow tired I forget to take my pills When I forget to take my pills my thoughts race through my head When thoughts race through my head I rush to take action When I rush to take action I hit “add to cart” on Amazon When I hit “add to cart” on Amazon a million boxes arrive at our doorstep When a million boxes arrive at our doorstop my husband has a cow When my husband has a cow it makes me think of milk When I think of milk it reminds me to take my pills […]
August 4, 2019

Island Adventure

We were four strangers meeting at Pier 3 early on a Thursday morning. The sky was overcast and you could see the fog rolling in from the distance. Bags were strewn around, waiting to be place in waterproof bags to protect them during the trip. The Rocket power boat of Superior Sail was being prepared for the voyage including coolers of food to feed us for four days. I was the last one to arrive and stood awkwardly off to the side silently willing myself to take the first step and introduce myself. However, before I could act she moved forward with an outstretched hand “I’m Jean” and with that we all introduced ourselves. Momentarily it was time to talk […]
May 20, 2019

All They Need Is You

My husband and I tried for years to conceive a baby of our own. When it didn’t happen we moved easily to pursuing adoption. We had heard horror stories of waiting for years to be chosen to adopt. We decided early on that we wouldn’t ask for a baby or even a toddler. We would open our hearts and home to a preschooler and we took the required course, filled out piles of paperwork and completed several hours of interviews. We then were quickly matched with a little boy. We were given full disclosure through several meetings and reviewing his file. We decided that despite his rough start to life we wanted to become his parents.  We met him and […]
January 5, 2019

Trying New Things

I just found this unpublished on my posts page. I guess I got so busy I forgot to post it. I’m trying something new lately where I get out of my comfort zone to do something that ultimately makes me happy no matter how much anxiety happens beforehand. Today the boys and I (and Jeremy’s) friend drove 5 hours to pick a puppy. There were four to choose from and I had carefully chosen this breeder. (For anyone that wants to admonish me and cheer for rescue adoptions I agree but in this case after a year of unsuccessful trying I moved onto a very reputable breeder). Now back to happy puppy story. We expected to choose from 3 so […]
June 24, 2018

An Open Letter to Mental Health Services in My Community

On June 14 and 15, 2018 I took part in ASSIST put on by CMHA Windsor-Essex . It is a suicide prevention program and I will forever be thankful to my employer for supporting me in giving me the two days off to take part in such important training that everyone in every community should take. In the training were mental health workers, first responders, clergy, students and blue collar workers. It was an intense couple of days and really brought painful memories to the forefront but I was absolutely ready to take this next step in my efforts to bring about mental health awareness and improve services. During the first day of training I broke into a cold sweat […]
June 8, 2018

When You Don’t Know What to Say

 The past few days have been a struggle . . . first Kate Spade and now Anthony Bourdain . They both fell into despair so deep they saw no way out . . . and they completed suicide. The struggle for me is such a deeply personal one and their actions bring back my past actions and what could have been. Both of these very accomplished individuals had family and friends who loved them deeply and they each had a pre-teen daughter that now has to live without one of their parents. I have been struggling because I feel like I should be able to raise awareness as I always try to do but here is the thing – I don’t […]