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Let’s Move! — First Lady Michelle Obama’s initiative to end childhood obesity within a generation — just turned 4.

We’re celebrating all week, and we want you to join us.

The First Lady wants you to share how you’re moving by using the hashtag #LetsMove on social media to share a photo of your favorite activity or healthy snack. If enough people get involved, President Obama and Vice President Biden will share how they get moving, too.  Watch the video


Then Spread the word and get involved!



Please enjoy this week’s community newsletter.

This month LOP begins its Black History Month celebration with an interview with a former U.s. Marshall, Mr. Robert Moore. Discover some little-known tings about law enforcement in America.

Did you know about the National Read-In activities especially this month. You can get your family, community involved because it’s not too late!

LOP pays tribute to Dr. biden, and lots of college preparation news inside.

Have you enrolled in Obamacare yet? It’s a must before penalties are imposed. GET COVERED and have peace of mind!!


Thank you and have a blessed weekend!picture063

LOP Weekly Community News Update

The National Alliance on Mental Illnesses in Maryland prepares for ADVOCACY Day. What is ADVOCACY DAY? Do you participate in your state?

Want to start a business? Subscribe to SCORE!
What is Educational Excellence?
How will attending community college fulfill your dreams?
Want to write a book? Get an affordable Consultant.

It’s all inside because our Dreams Don’t Die, Labels do!

Twitter (LOP1936)

LOP’s Community Keeping Dreams Alive ~ 01/23/2014

LOP’s Community Keeping Dreams Alive ~ 01/23/2014


It is happiness to know that despite living with a mental illness in recovery, I can still pursue my dream of owning my own business.  I invite you to join my community of mental illness recovery success by e-mailing me at levineoliverpublisheer@gmail.com

I thank you for your support and as I prepare to release my new e-book next month, I hope you will join the e-mail contact list and stay connected.  Together we can do a lot to raise awareness about life with a mental illness and bring down the stigma, stereotypes in society that often prevent us from fulfilling our purpose!

My weekly videos are on Youtube so please check them out.

See, ya on Twitter, too!  (LOP1936)




Grandiose Blues:  in a nutshell, Depression/Bipolar Disorder can cause one to go into extreme debt.  This is caused by the belief that you have lots of money if you have Bipolar Disorder.  You may believe you are rich, famous, wealthy, etc.  Based on that false belief, you spend like crazy on stuff, trips, luxuries, gadgets, gifts, etc. and you cannot realistically bail yourself out.  You may have to keep borrowing and/or file bankruptcy.

Depression can cause you to buy ‘feel good items’ or comfort stuff much the same way.  In both scenarios, your spending is or will become reckless.

In both cases, it is time for professional help.  A change in medications.  Therapy.  The situation is beyond being able to stop on your own.  If you see this pattern in a loved one, it will cause you to be frustrated and angry.  You vent, fuss, argue, etc.

The problem does not go away using those tactics.  The problem, issue, side effect, if you will, can be solved with professional intervention with mental healthcare services and a plan.  When a person with mental illness is stabilized, then the behavior can be discussed with a bona fide plan to prevent it from happening again. 

It ends those monthly fights over social security benefit checks, too! (barring drugs, gambling, extreme circumstances requiring intense intervention strategies and NEVER violence).

For example:  BUDGET

taking bank cards, credit cards, check book,

making a list before shopping, using coupons, sale items only, etc.

cash only,

delay going to store or online shopping until mood swings have passed, stabled. 

BEFORE spending money, discuss why a persons wants to shop or feel the need to shop without judging. 

Participate in the shopping trip to avoid a spree!  Can you have popcorn and a home movie instead?  Will a trip to the theater work?  How about an afternoon window shopping trip!  One of the ways I learned to not spend money I didn’t have (w.i.p.) was to window shop with the idea/commitment that if it is there when I return, it is meant for me.  What about lay-a-ways…they are still en vogue in my book.  My favorite store was/is Burlington Factory.  I could lay-away items and pay in increments when I worked outside my home. 

Recognize when YOU are influencing a vulnerable person to spend money he/she doesn’t have;

Do not bail him/her out every time and know the cut-off point;

Know when to contact the person’s doctor/pastor/therapist respectfully and ask for help.  This should not mean calling social services and demanding checks be placed in your name, etc. which leads to all sorts of hatred, resentment, hurt, harm, disrespect, accusations, allegations, profanity, bullying, oppression, low self-esteem, serious/Chronic depression, fear, anxiety, panic, etc. and does very little, if anything at all, to help a person achieve mental wellness recovery success. 

Mental wellness recovery success is unique to each individual and it will not happen overnight because you say so like with any other illness or behavior modification.  I am suggesting meeting with the person and his/her doctor/pastor, etc. together and working as a team understanding stabilization must happen before persons can see, understand, accept the problem and work to solve it.  This is moving towards recovery success with a goal.

Enforce responsible spending with compassion;

Do not make continuous loans to a vulnerable person causing debt he/she cannot repay you;

Have something old, but good as new? — bless him/her with it from pots, pans to shoes to earrings, etc.  You will be amazed how that cures reckless spending and quenches that urging desire to spend. 

Did you know ‘Monday-morning-quarter-backing’ includes spending, gift-giving, etc.  the same way ‘normal’ people agonize when those Christmas bills start rolling in? 

Do we want to sacrifice after-Christmas sales/bargains and purchase health insurance?  YES we must!

Affordable healthcare is the goal for every person by the end of the year.  Persons who receive monthly benefits, may have dependents who do not.  Access to affordable healthcare IS access to mental heal services.  Preventing mental illness in your family means one more healthy person in the community to build it up. 

There is nothing embarrassing about applying for Medicaid for all members of the family in MDHealthConnection.gov or going into a local social services office.  There are Navigators (health ambassadors) available to help persons apply for and/or purchase affordable healthcare.  There is nothing wrong with receiving mental health services, too! This is the best way to break the cycle of mental illness in families and not continue the cycle of mental illness and poverty. 

In 2014, NO name-calling is allowed!!!

amen, Amen?

Personal Dev.


One of the biggest challenges I faced since being diagnosed with a mental illness was the death of my youngest son.  It had me worried for a long time because I knew because of his disabilities he would not live forever.  That I accepted, but it worried me still about the how I would respond since I have a mental illness — Bipolar Disorder/Depression.
Well, he passed away in 2010 and I knew those who loved me had the same concerns.  I also knew I had a dream I still wanted to accomplish.  I had a plan for quite some time about how to survive life-altering events.  This was how I could keep a plan to stay in recovery and I had help, too.

Doing this 500-piece puzzle and listening to Juanita Bynum`s ‘Soul Cry” helped me to mourn and grieve my youngest son`s death. It helped me to focus and cope and avoid going to the hospital. I notified my Dr. that my son passed and he checked on me twice. With my other 2 children, family, and our Lord, I was fine. When I miss my son, I have the puzzle to remind me of the many ways he brought me joy.  The funny thing is that my daughter`s dog took a piece. So my puzzle reflects a part of me that is gone forever and to never forget all the reasons I worked hard to stay well. … My other children need me.  And God is always there.  Amen!

I give God the glory because I survived a mighty test and shook off negative labels.  I am still in recovery and my dream is alive and well!  There is hope for anyone with a mental illness to achieve mental wellness recovery.  It begins with access to healthcare.  The Affordable Care Act is the access to healthcare essential benefits that can lead you to your dreams. 

The Affordable Care Act, Obamacare, provides mental healthcare essential benefits and you cannot be denied due to pre-existing conditions.  Only a doctor can make the diagnosis of a mental illness.  This is important for young adults to know and understand because they are high-risk for developing Depression.  Untreated Depression leads to a more serious mental illness.

The days are winding down for APPLYING, SHOPPING, and BUYING affordable healthcare.  Visiting Healthcare.gov will allow the young adults in your life to GET COVERED by January 1, 2014. 

There are many, many health insurance plans on the website.  Uninsured Young Adults can shop for the best affordable health coverage, make the premium payment to the provider he/she selects and begin the new year covered for health and mental health insurance. 

Why is this important?  When uninsured young adults purchase health insurance, they have access to health services.  When they become sick, they will go to the doctor’s office, get any necessary medications, lab work, etc.  They receive treatment.  This keeps them healthier.  They can learn better when healthy.  They can work when they are healthy.  They become more responsible as young adults.  They take the burden off of citizens who pay the difference in costs when uninsured young adults use emergency rooms as doctor visits.  They contribute to this wonderful country economically!!

This weekend is the perfect time before the December 23, 2013, deadline to GET COVERED!  Healthcare coverage is a great gift idea, too, to get uninsured young adults started with health coverage.  Spread that message TODAY!




Essential health benefits are the only ways to maintain good health and have access to healthcare and mental healthcare services.

Obamacare will provide that and the latest reports on Healthcare.gov continue to improve with enrollment as uninsured persons APPLY, SHOP, and BUY affordable health insurance for self and families.

It is just as important at the state level to get enrollment up and uninsured persons covered. These state programs have deadlines just like the federal Obamacare programs. I want to share that when I first was diagnosed with a mental illness, I did not have insurance. In short, as my application for coverage was being processed for disability health insurance, I was ‘bumped’ around to several different hospitals. Each experience leaves a lasting effect and contributes to delaying mental wellness. That was about 20 years ago. The absence of health insurance interrupts being able to be strong and mentally healthy. This prevents people from not only having a quality of life and fulfilling their purpose in life, but it adversely affects the economy. The talents and gifts we have builds and sustains America, states, and cities. The bottom line is that the tax dollars we also contribute is vital to the national, state, and city’s economy.

Tis the season to be jolly should include making sure you and your family are covered with health insurance FIRST. You can enroll in your state program such as Maryland Health Connection or apply for Medicaid which has expanded healthcare benefits. This is particularly possible for those eligible persons who are poor. Poverty causes the pride of a person to hurt especially during this season and he/she may choose to buy gifts for children, etc. and not purchase health insurance. It is also the peak season for Depression. Sadness. Grieving. Faced with harsh times with food prices high, utilities going up, etc. and when people are not used to having health insurance (uninsured young adults), it will be at the bottom of the list of things to do. Together we can help them put health insurance investment at the top of their list. We trust that the technical difficulties will indeed continue to be removed at the state levels, too, so if you have time TODAY – GET COVERED!

How is enrollment in your state progressing? Do you have family members who are still not covered? Are you teaching your children the true meaning of Christmas?

Prevent mental illness and do your mind good!