This is the first of many bi-monthly columns to be penned under the Health and Wellness Editor moniker. I hope to provide you with timely, interesting, enlightening information regarding your personal health and wellness, and the resources and events in our communities. To that end, I will focus on topical interests of note and attempt to personalize the comments with the experience and expertise of others in the know and available to the duPont REGISTRY Tampa Bay. You will also be made aware of any special events sponsored by the duPont REGISTRY Tampa Bay and any breaking stories through our ever popular website: www.dupontregistrytampabay.com.
By now, many of you are already aware of the duPont REGISTRY Tampa Bay series of lectures, seminars, panel discussions that we sponsor approximately six times a year. The first of these special events was held this past month at the duPont REGISTRY world headquarters just off Ulmerton Road in the Feather Sound area of Pinellas County. The panel consisted of six distinguished medical professionals who shared observations on the process of a preventative lifestyle that enhances the mental health of one’s family, home, workspace and community. Inspired by your Health and Wellness Editor, the panelists enlightened the crowd on the subtle and not so subtle effects of mental health disease and how to best prepare each of us to lift the stigma of the disease and limit the effects felt by all involved.
It was a special evening that was inspired by initial conversations with the publisher, Tom duPont. As the Health and Wellness editor, I took his suggestion and contacted Bill Lutes, a good friend of the publisher and a current Board Member of the Gracepoint Foundation. From his gracious repose, I visited with Ian Adair, the executive director of Gracepoint. I found a multi-disciplined organization poised at a moment’s notice to assist those in need as they face the serious issues of depression, drug and alcohol addiction, and even suicide. They are not only ready to help but also promote sound living and lifestyle environments. The result is an alliance between the duPont REGISTRY Tampa Bay and Gracepoint wherein the proceeds of our series of events will be forwarded to the Andrew Lutes endowment at Gracepoint. This special fund was established by Bill Lutes in memory of his son whom he lost to suicide in April of 2016. Under Bill’s leadership and with our support we hope to assist Gracepoint in its journey to irrigate the stigma of mental health illness and promote a “Health and Wellness” environment.
Please join us as the journey begins and be ready for our next health and wellness event in a month or so.
I must comment that today’s world seems to enhance the ability for mental health disease to occur, but it also affords us the opportunity to do something about it. Recent events in the music world with the loss of Chester Bennington and Chris Cornell have inspired a new and more intense dialogue. Locally, there have been other events focusing on the issues of mental health disease including The Beer and Bowtie fundraiser benefiting the Crisis Center of Tampa Bay was held on August 25, 2017.
On a more personal note, I suffered through my own mental health issues in my teenage years. It has been over 25 years since my depression has lifted and I am eternally grateful for the professional guidance that helped me through my own recovery. I can assure you that I come from a healthy, happy, loving home with all the benefits a young adult could sustain, I grew up in a middle-class family with loving parents and two loving brothers. I suffered with deep depression that required therapy, medication, self-realization, love, understanding and lots of TLC. I hope that my successful journey can be replicated with support from all of you and resources like the Crisis Center and Gracepoint. People of all ages face the challenge of mental health disease in many ways that are not always noticeable. I encourage you to reach out if you need help and encourage those whom you know facing serious effects of mental health disease to seek help. Our community needs and deserves your support in this special battle.
More next month from your Health and Wellness Editor,
Sharon Fekete, The Doctor Whisperer