5 Friday Faves – Moment of Lament, Anxiety and Depression, John’s Crazy Socks, Relapse/Recovery, and Alex Trebek

Welcome to the weekend! Here in a flash are my week’s faves:

1) Moment of Lament – This year marks the 400th anniversary of the first landing of ships carrying African peoples, destined for slavery or servanthood, to American soil. [See link for some of the controversy around this anniversary.] A Moment of Lament organized by For Richmond is scheduled for several churches in our city to mark this anniversary, and to thank God for those who endured this terrible offense and have profoundly contributed to our country’s identity and character.

Photo Credit: For Richmond, Facebook

2) Anxiety and Depression – Two connected and chronic human struggles in society today are anxiety and depression. None of us is immune to these, and we all have loved ones who are especially caught in the battle against either anxiety or depression or both.

A favorite author of mine, Frank Sonnenberg, has written on 30 distressing habits we can develop over time that lead us to anxiety and depression.  Some of these include keeping bad company, prizing possessions over relationships, holding onto anger, bowing to others’ agendas for your life, and entitlement. Just to name a few. Check out his list, see if you’ve fallen into some of these, but don’t let his list guilt you (another one of his 30). Understanding how we can fall into these habits can help us climb out of some of our struggles.

Journalist Johann Hari has written on addiction, anxiety and depression. [Hari, earlier in his career, came under attack for his ethics and journalistic practices. What he said in the TED Talk below is so spot on, it warrants our consideration.]

Hari has long struggled himself with anxiety and depression. In preparation for writing his book on the subject, he took a literal journey of discovery. Traveling across the world to interview a myriad of specialists on the subject of anxiety/depression. The TED Talk is worth your 20 minutes. In short, he talked about how sometimes medication is necessary for the chemical imbalance some of us have making us vulnerable to anxiety/depression. Many more of us, however, don’t have a chemical imbalance. Our struggles with anxiety and depression relate more to “unmet needs”. The needs for meaning, purpose, community, connectedness. He talks about how we have allowed false values (recognition on social media, fame or celebrity, individual effort) to replace larger values of actually being present in our world, touching lives as only we’re able to do, connecting with life (and I will add God, here).

14:22 minutes into the TED Talk, he offers an exercise that can make a difference in the quality of our lives. An exercise that’s meant to be done in community.

Johann Hari – Quotes – Goodreads

Depression and Diet – WebMD

Photo Credit: Ann Voskamp, #WorldKindnessDay, and Facebook

3) John’s Crazy Socks – Socks for Christmas, right? Always a good idea. John Lee Cronin and Mark X. Cronin are the co-founders of John’s Crazy Socks. Mark is the dad and John is the son. The whole concept of these socks is so special that you need to see the story:

Whether you buy socks at Walmart or pay the extra for John’s Crazy Socks is not the issue. What counts is that some folks have made this a very successful business, and it is much deserved! Thanks, Mark and John. You’ve definitely made us happy just knowing you a bit.

4) Relapse/Recovery – For any of us who have friends or family in recovery from drug addiction, we know the dread of relapse. One of my best friends is a recovered alcoholic. She has spent most of her life sober…to the point, in fact, that she feels God has cured her of alcoholism. However, does she ever drink? Absolutely not.

She just doesn’t go there.

Someone else in our lives has relapsed. After several years drug-free. I will protect their privacy, but the relapse has been devastating. For us, and I’m sure for them.

It happens. Not always, but sometimes. However, it still doesn’t define the person. That person, after recovery, has a job, and a family, and hopes and dreams. When a relapse occurs all those things are threatened.Photo Credit: PxHere

With the opioid epidemic, incarceration is not the answer. Drug rehab residential programs are less costly and more effective, but also are not without risks. After years of drug-free recovery, a person who relapses is more vulnerable for overdose and death because of lowered tolerance for the drugs.

Relapse also leaves the family vulnerable…emotionally and socioeconomically.

For those of us who love these wrestling with the work of recovery and the risk of relapse…we learn what we can and we rally around them and their families in healthy and truly helpful ways.

Heroin Addiction Recovery Program – Redeption, Recovery in a Chesterfield Jail – John Adam

What Happens If I Relapse? – Addiction Center

Guide to Cocaine Rehab

Slip vs. Relapse – What’s the Difference?

REAL LIFE Opens Women’s Home for Recovering Addicts Released From Jail – Jeremy M. Lazarus

5) Alex Trebek – A quiz show on TV that millions of Americans watch every day is Jeopardy. We wait to call Dave’s mom until after Jeopardy is off. Alex Trebek, the show-host, is as much a household name is any celebrity in our pop culture. He makes the show even more interesting and sometimes funny and treats his guest contestants with honor.

We were all saddened to hear of his cancer diagnosis earlier this year. Pancreatic cancer. Thankful to hear he was determined to fight it, and he has! Alex Trebek instills confidence and if anyone can successfully stave off pancreatic cancer, he can. He announced recently, during this beloved show, that he was going back on chemotherapy, we were stunned. Even one of the contestants forfeited his opportunity to win more prize money to show support for Alex.

Here’s the video of what happened…including Alex’s emotional response – #WeLoveYouAlex – Praying for you.


We heard Bob Costas speak recently at Richmond Forum – a real national treasure.

A Prayer to Remember – God Fights For You Today – Debbie McDaniel

Faking It – Could I Go From being an Introvert to an Extrovert in One Week? – Sirin Kale

A Christmas Classic and a Couple of Musical Collaborations:

Photo Credit: Facebook, The Fabulous Fifties

Learning About Someone

Jon McCray’s very fair take on John Crist’s current situation:

8 thoughts on “5 Friday Faves – Moment of Lament, Anxiety and Depression, John’s Crazy Socks, Relapse/Recovery, and Alex Trebek”

  1. I have an interest in the recent news about Comedian John Crist . First, John Crist’s father, Johnny Crist, was my pastor for a short while in the 1980s while he was Pastor at Atlanta Vineyard Church. At the time he was Pastor, all of his 8 children were very young. So, I never really knew John. (Today, Johnny is no longer a Pastor but is Mayor of Lilburn, Georgia, a suburban town near my home outside of Atlanta. He has been Mayor since 2012.)

    Secondly, my current pastor has a son, Andrew, who is a part-time stand-up comedian in Atlanta, and Andrew has done some comedian skits with John.

    Thanks for posting the video by Jon McCray. I pray for healing for John Crist — John’s public response to allegations seems genuine and heartfelt.

  2. I am very appreciative of the Moment of Lament that was organized and took place this past Sunday at many Richmond churches. It is quite fitting since Richmond was the Capitol of the Confederacy during the Civil War.

    How was the event for you, Debbie?

    1. It was beautiful and somber. I used to hate having the word privileged thrust on me, but now I am beginning to understand how privileged I am. It is not something to feel guilt over but to be actively advocating, out of my privilege, for those who do not share that piece of geography…yet.

  3. I am somewhat familiar with Johann Hari’s work and enjoyed the posted 20-minute TED talk. I like what Hari says that depression (and anxiety) are usually caused by unmet needs, not biology (even though there can be a predisposition toward depression).

    I enjoyed hearing about Hari’s 2 beliefs in what has exacerbated modern society’s unmet needs. The first has to do with how humans are created to survive and thrive by living in tribes (groups) and collaborating toward a common goal. However, in our western culture we have “disbanded” our tribes and stopped collaborating, causing us to have the unmet needs of loneliness, depression and anxiety. These psychological issues can be fulfilled by our determination to once again live in groups and cooperate with each other to achieve common goals. Then, this will bring about connection again.

    Hari’s second belief is that in our modern society we think that we can eliminate sadness, loneliness, feelings of worthlessness, and physical and emotional pain by buying into advertising that promises to eliminate these maladies. However, it does not and cannot deliver because our unmet needs are psychological, not material, in nature. These needs can and will be met with human connection.

    I am re-stating these points by Hari here for my own and hopefully others’ benefits. Thanks for posting, Debbie.

    1. It was fascinating to hear his talk and then to followup with some of the reads in that section of my blog. Worth the risk of opening our lives to others. The right groups of women and men…for sure. Real community. Thanks so much for commenting.

    1. Thank you, Annette, for your part in it. “Learning About Someone” resonated so much – after 35 years of marriage, I still discover more layers to my husband…and other loved ones. Thank you.

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