I suppose there could be many reasons for blogging, and if I'm honest with myself, I have no idea what my reason is, aside from maybe a half-assed desire to put myself out there without having to really look people in the face and put myself out there. Brave, right? Also, I just love to write, and I can never seem to find a pen, let alone a piece of paper that doesn't have Iron Man or Batman drawn on it in thick marker. So I blog.
But today I have a reason. I'm going in deep, and it has a purpose. Life is complicated, and as Glennon Doyle from Momastery puts it, brutiful. A combination of brutal things and beautiful things which can't completely be untangled. They weave together and make our story what it is. And the most key ingredient in our brutiful story is our attitude. Unfortunately I often let my attitude color my story a little or a lot more darkly than I need. It is a process I have been working on my whole life, and need to continue to work on. At times my shades are a little rosier, and at times they are a little dingier and in need of a good wiping off. But there is some back story that I think needs to be opened up to the world. Not because I need any sympathy - sympathy is certainly not over-rated, its just not what is needed in my case. What I need is the reminder to make the best of the beautiful times so that they shine through into the brutal times to remind me what I'm here for. The reason I want to shed light is because I think I often give the world the impression that the so-called "brutal" parts of my existence are external struggles that I must contend with, when in reality, the gifts I have been given by God including my husband and my family, are the beautiful parts of my life.
My brutal is an ugliness that comes from the inside. This may be the hardest thing I have ever chosen to be open about, but I believe I owe it to the people that I sometimes, or often, tear down when the emotions inside of me become tornadoes with a will of their own. Namely my husband. Dan is not perfect. But if he had been perfect I never would have taken a second look at him. I don't want perfect. I don't like perfect. Perfect is fake. What Dan is, is real, genuine, loyal, sensitive, and loving. But he is a man. And men are not like women. If you want to know about the conflicts the differences between men and women create, read Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. Our real problems come from deeper inside of me. Those who know me know that I am a pretty functional, though often spacey and emotional person. You may think other things of me, but you have been kind enough to keep those things to your self. Thank you for that.
I am fairly functional. But from my pre-teen years on I have struggled with deep bouts of major depression, anxiety, ADD/ADHD and PMDD. All of which can somewhat overlap eachother and become muddled to the point that I have decided that in general, the diagnoses we and our Dr's give ourselves are not helpful for any purpose other than to help narrow down medication needs. I have caught myself often getting too wrapped up in the labels, but I think the best way to look at them is to remember that almost all of us have some form of something if we really want to look hard enough. It is all a sliding scale, and it should only be important to your Dr, and maybe your teachers, and only in the event that you need medical intervention, which, if you do, you should not be ashamed of. But now that you know these things about me I am no different that I was before.
What I want you to understand is that I am trying my hardest to learn how to keep the people I love out of the path of my storm. Sadly my husband lands in its path most often. The fact that he has stood by me and weathered those storms for 9 years now should tell you something of his character. I love him dearly, and he is my even keel, much as my mother was when I was in my late teens and early twenties. I think that while being a stay at home mom has been one of the most profound blessings of my life, it has also been one of the most difficult times for me in learning to manage and regulate and maintain schedules, emotions etc. In the corporate world I thrived. I showed up, I followed protocol, I had resources to assist with organization when needed. There was structure, there were not only accolades given for doing what you were asked to do, but when I could go above and beyond, just like in school, I was able to receive even more validation. I think those things really held me together in school, sports, and the work world, and I think I am learning to manage without them at home, though a little bit more slowly. I do look forward to someday entering the workforce again in some way and finding a venue to knock peoples socks off so that I don't need to seek validation elsewhere (like through sewing lol).
For me these days, the things that are most difficult aside from remembering to take the medication that keeps me from forgetting to get my children to brush their teeth and take a bath, and that helps me to make the best of my beautiful days, which is the majority of them, is that when the world crashes down, I can't trust my own emotions. Some days I feel I have the right to be angry at something, and the next minute I realize it could just be a reaction to medication, lack of medication, too much gluten, not enough sunlight, pms, and even if its none of the above, the people close to me will likely attribute my emotions to those things anyway. And so down the rabbit hole.
Do you want to know what God has given me to ensure that I never give in? Everything I need. I know that may sound like part of the crazy, but I believe with all of my heart on my most sane of days that this is a fact. I have attempted suicide twice. Both times in my teens. Both times with a well thought out plan. Both times the key to my plan went missing at the last minute. I believe God intervened so that my life would be saved. Then my nephew Kenny was born, and I loved him so much that I was terrified every day that something would happen to him. It still brings tears to my eyes to even think about. I have never mentioned this to him - he is now 16. But his life saved mine several times, because I knew I could never let my nephew who I loved so much, down. And then more nephews came, Caleb, Lyle, Braden, and the love grew and God had placed a net beneath me. Then I moved far away and the net became a little harder to feel. Until somehow I realized that every time I hit that rock bottom low point, if I could just hold out for 3 days, I would wake up and the world would be right again. And that three day rule has continued to work. I believe it is my gift from the Lord because I prayed many times for his help. I have truly feared that I would not be able to live out my days because of this depression, and I believe he has given me the tools to conquer it one day at a time.
So why else am I telling you all this (all 5 of you, ha!)? I don't really know, other than maybe someone who reads this needs to find hope that they can make it through too. Maybe God has a reason for not taking it away completely, but He will help you get through it.
To my friends who I have allowed close enough to walk with me through the good and the bad days (Faith, Dan), thank you. To any who I may have frustrated with a distance kept, please know it has nothing to do with you. I am protecting you from a level of neurosis you really probably don't want to deal with, lol.
For those of you who read through all of this and now wish you could un-read it, when I find a button for that I'll be sure to include it in each post, but for now, thanks for reading... and lets all just pretend we didn't see this... mmmmkaaaaay?