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The Rosalynn Carter Fellowships For Mental Health Journalism 2009-2010

Tamara Jeffries

Freelance Journalist
Durham, N.C.

Topic: Explore the issue of postpartum depression in African-American women.

Published Work:

'Everything's Just Fine' Blog
Tamara Jeffries' work is a form of translation. She captures what's in the heart and mind and puts it into words. She makes complex concepts plain, and simple ideas vivid.

Depression, Carter Center, Mental Health, Women, Black Health, Ntozake Shange, Terrie Williams
In the summer of '09, when the call came from the Carter Center telling me I'd gotten a Rosalynn Carter Fellowship for Mental Health Journalism, I gasped-thrilled, honored.This will be a sweet little addition to the resume.Little did I know how deeply I would be affected by the experience of spending a year looking at the complexities of mental health and mental illness-especially among women and in communities of color.

The Color of Grief
I know blue. Thick, smudged blue, like ink oozing from the spine of a broken pen. Like a vat of indigo, tipped, sloshing, splashing, running in fast rivulets then sighing into dry earth. Like the atmosphere at midnight, swelling to squeeze out even the tiniest prick of light from the stars. Blue I know.

When Daddy is Down
I just read a report that says that black fathers are 50 percent more likely to be depressed than other men. I shouldn't be surprised, but I am.

The Candy Dish
She comes to your office for a mint. She selects a piece of candy from the ceramic bowl on your desk and begins to chat a little. She lingers. Chatting.

Meditation, Depression, Anxiety, Mental Health, Mindfulness
I've tried and tried. Been to retreats; done it at church; practiced it walking, sitting, chanting, silent. I've made a place to "sit" at home. But meditation does not come easy for me.

Of Mysteries and Meditation
I’ve tried and tried. Been to retreats; done it at church; practiced it walking, sitting, chanting, silent. I’ve made a place to “sit” at home. But meditation does not come easy for me. 

Whence Cometh My Help

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