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  • Writer's pictureJessica Barker

Track a Ghost...

Updated: Jan 1, 2020

Just under a week ago, I published my first post here, and I just have to say thank you to all who have shown incredible support all ready for this blog, topic and my work.

I thought it might be a good idea to do a post on how the name of this blog came to be. It wasn’t the easiest thing to find a name for a blog that looked to encompass a rather broad range of ideas. I of course checked to see if my own name was available, but alas, as I didn’t plan ahead for doing this blog when the internet began, and I have the single most popular girls name of the 1980’s, I struck out of luck in any combination of my names that didn’t involve a spelling so obscure that it made the point of using my own name completely moot. While I laugh and poke fun at this I understand a little more the desire of modern day parents to find an original name for their child! (Check out this video for a little comedic relief on that topic.)

So I did what I do when faced with any dilemma I don’t quite know how to solve- I turned to the infinite wisdom of classic rock and looked for an appropriate song lyrics to inspire me. Tom Petty and “Free Fallin’” has always been a favorite of mine, but alas, that name was taken and didn’t seem to quite convey the message that I wanted. I strongly entertained REO Speedwagon and especially after I learned the domain was available (up for the taking!), also didn’t seem to quite give what I wanted it terms of mood. Eventually I came to a lyric by my favorite band, Fleetwood Mac, (who I am sure readers of this blog will eventually tire of hearing about!) and the song Sweet Girl. I sang through the lyrics, and when I came to Verse 2, and the line “Track a ghost through the fog” I knew I had found my title.

Through the fog brings up visions of something that you can just see and know it is there, but feels a bit out of reach. Many people have described both dealing with mental health issues and our health care system as unclear, and any mental disorders are associated with mental fog, a feeling of unclarity, dimness, obscurity of thought, motivation and direction. The current landscape of our treatment for these conditions and navigating getting the help that is needed is often unclear, fuzzy, and like trying to “track a ghost through the fog,” always elusive and even more difficult for those who are currently in the fog themselves. Yet, it is the very people that are in the fog who we need to help be able to catch that ghost, and however difficult it may be, we must find a way.

We have come so far in the field of mental health over the past 20 years, especially in the field of eating disorders. Sometimes I look back to my beginning days in this field and I am astounded as just how far we have come. With the strength of the momentum we have behind us, I believe it’s time to take the field ever further, and in the coming posts I will describe some of the ways I think we can do this. I hope you are ready as I venture into a world that can be difficult to describe, and once you feel like you have a grasp on it, can change rapidly. It is my most sincere hope that you will join me on this journey, which will likely not take any path that you might predict.


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