Words to Live and Write by

I am willing to fall Because I have learned how to rise.

I craft Love from heartbreak, Compassion from shame, Grace from disappointment, Courage from failure.

I am among the brave and brokenhearted, and I am rising strong.

(credit to Brene Brown)

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Here Comes The Sun

I felt happy today for the first time in months. That sounds like an exaggeration. But since the beginning of summer I've had one trial after another, often at the same time, piling up on me. Not small easy trials - well, those, too - but big ones that I have a hard time handling even individually. I am strong, but I am not invincible. Inevitably, I cracked under the pressure. I had a full mental breakdown in the fall and have been fighting to rise out of the pit of depression every day since.
When you are suffering from active, aggressive depression, "happy" is relative. There is a deep, permanent kind of joy I feel for my husband, my daughter, and so many who love me. But it's hard for that deep happiness to surface from beneath depression's cover. Instead of seeing the world through figurative rose-colored glasses, I see through blue-colored ones; everything is a little "off."
What was so different about today? Maybe nothing. Maybe it was the rare Oregon winter sunshine. Most certainly it had something to do with a friend's anonymous, generous and much-needed gift. Maybe it was the slower pace of the day, some alone-time with my husband, and a favorite movie. Maybe all the things. All I know is that today was different.
I realized it was different tonight when we went in to change Lana and put her back to bed. As I held her in her sweet, sleepy, dependent state, my heart broke open with love too big for it. I was so happy I nearly cried. Okay, fine, I did cry. Then, as I settled back onto the couch with my husband and my dog I had the same reaction, only instead of tears it was a big, uncontrollable grin and a light feeling within. I felt the weight of my depression lifted off me and my heart fluttered and my lungs filled with air as if I hadn't taken a deep breath in months.
I hope this is not a fleeting feeling. It feels so good to be happy. I'd forgotten how deliciously liberating it is. But I'm writing this to remind myself that even if depression overwhelms me again, it will go away, and when it does the happiness is, at the least, equally overwhelming.
To those of you who read this, thank you for loving and supporting me through my darkness. I need you. You don't know how much. And I can't thank you enough for all the ways, big and small, that you keep saving me. I can't make any promises, but I hope I don't need so many rescue missions for a while. And I hope to be able to pay both forward and back the love that I've received.

Friday, January 17, 2014

Signs You're a Mom

21 Clear Signs You're a Mom 
(Taken from the Huffingtonpost.com)
1. Instead of running from projectile vomit, you run towards it.

2. You do more in seven minutes than most people do all day.

3. Happy hour has become the 60 minutes between your kids going to bed and you going to bed.

4. A glass of wine counts as a serving of fruit.

5. You have mini-therapy sessions all day long with anyone who will listen.

6. Going to the grocery store by yourself is a vacation.

7. You think of physical pain on three levels: pain, excruciating pain and stepping on a Lego.

8. You have the ability to hear a sneeze through closed doors in the middle of the night, two bedrooms away, while your husband snores next to you.

9. You'd rather have a 103 degree fever than watch one of your kids suffer with it.

10. A 15-minute shower with the door locked feels like a day at the spa.

11. Peeing with an audience is part of the daily routine.

12. You use baby wipes to clean up random spills and the dash of your car.

13. You lock yourself in the bathroom and pretend to have diarrhea just to get a break.

14. You love Moms' Night Out and Date Night with the Hubs.

15. You have a secret chocolate stash because frankly, you're sick of sharing.

16. You've been washing the same load of laundry for three days because you forgot to dry it.

17. You realize you've been watching Nick Jr. alone, even though your kids have been in bed for over 30 minutes.

18. You can cook dinner, breastfeed, talk on the phone and yell at the kids, all without breaking stride or missing any of the TV show you are watching.

19. You get more excited about the Mini Boden Catalogue than J Crew's.

20. You decide to stick with your car for the next decade because a) you can't afford to switch and b) you haven't found a car wash that knows how to get all the milk stains and glitter removed.

21. By the end of the day, brushing your teeth feels like a huge accomplishment.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Medicine is not for the Fair-Weather Mother

Colds at our house. The baby won't stop screaming, throwing temper tantrums, and hitting me and herself. Of course, this results in a worn-down mommy screaming more than normal (normal is never) and beating myself up inside.
Where are my reinforcements?
Oh yeah, he's at work, trying to earn money because we quite literally have none. And even uber-calm daddy is having breakdowns around this toddler lately.

Even movies and sugar are failing me this time. How is that even possible?

Confirmed ear infection. Spent our last pennies on the dr visit and antibiotics. Time to start antibiotic treatment, expensive probiotic supplements, and treating the yeast infection that will most likely follow because my highly sensitive child has highly sensitive skin.
The only hitch is I can't persuade her to TAKE the stupid antibiotics.
I am pulling my hair out and screaming (not an exaggeration).

  Sat on her. Made her choke it down. Mommy just broke out her bad side.
(I'm kind of loving that my "bad side" mommy looks like Mary Poppins.)

I also think I strained a pelvic muscle (the other side this time) doing it. Because, you know, what are my life's problems without a little extra, unnecessary pain to season them?