Mental Health

Today I found myself Google searching how long PPD last. I have been having a rough day and found myself with a lump in my throat, a pain in my chest, and tears streaming down my face. What triggered all this you ask? Being stuck with no car!

I’m currently in Maryland spending time with my child’s father and his family and I’m stuck at his families house with no car. I have to say being without a car is one of my pet peeves. I wanted to go get a mouse for my laptop so I could work without struggling to use the built in mouse. There were a lot of files I needed to have open and I needed to be able to easily swipe back and forth without the screen size shrinking and expanding! Unfortunately, when I finally made up my mind to get a mouse I realized nothing was within walking distance. Somehow all of that triggered what felt like a midlife crisis.

I found myself blowing up my mom and sisters phone to vent. I was upset that I was stuck, hungry, aggravated, cold, and emotional. I felt like my child’s father didn’t appreciate what I did on a daily basis or the discomfort I had to deal with to stay here for a week while I had to work. I was so distraught that I had to take the rest of the day off.

I eventually calmed down, but these extreme highs and lows aren’t something I experience before the baby. I realize that a lot of my problem is that I like to be in control but after the baby I felt like I was no longer in control. I now realize how important it is for me to go with the flow. It’s important that I realize that it’s okay if plans change, it’s okay if I can’t control every little aspect of my life. The important this is that I’m healthy and on my healing journey and that I have a happy and healthy baby.

Big Lot’s Holiday Décor

I have literally been sleeping on Big Lot’s but baby let me tell you. I went recently and now Big Lot’s is one of my absolute favorite stores for home décor. They have a lot of home décor needs. I purchased my bedding, pillows, and some holiday décor and I could not be happier. The price was right and the pieces look beautiful in my house. I can’t wait to share more of my favorites with you.

To My Best Friend: 10 Things I Want You to Know

  1. As you start your new life please know I’m still down for whatever. If at any time anything goes wrong I’m only a phone call away.
  2. I hope he fulfills your dreams and spoils you! Hopefully he does the cooking. “I don’t cook I don’t clean but let me show you how I got this ring!”

3. I hope you remember the moment you walked down the isle forever and I hope you remember the moment he told you how beautiful you were. May you always feel that beautiful! (It made me cry like a baby!)

4. I pray he listens to you when your down and does everything he can to put a smile on your face.

Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.

— Mark 10:9

5. I pray he understand what the bible says about love and makes you the happiest women in the world because you deserve it. “Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-5

6. I hope he reminds you everyday how beautiful you are and I hope he shows you with daily acts of kindness and love. May he always be patient, loving, and understanding. (If he doesn’t I’m a phone call away! Don’t worry I know the address I dropped a pin while I was there.)

7. I hope he supports your dreams and pushes you to reach new heights.

8. I hope he loves your flaws and imperfections and embraces them.

9. I hate to be replaced but I pray he becomes your best friend, your shoulder to lean on and cry on. I hope he supports you in the good and the bad times and never lets go of your hand.

10. Most importantly I hope he understands I’m not going anywhere. I hope he knows that if he ever hurts you that you have an army prepared to go to war for you, with you, or about you.

I am beyond proud of you Dr. Conley and I pray God blesses your marriage and every aspect of your life. From undergrad school to careers, babies, and marriages I plan to be by your side through it all.

Mental Health Monday

True health starts within. People often discount the mind body connection; to be truly healthy and happy you have to take care of your mental health. My mental health journey began when I was 6 months postpartum.

Postpartum depression for me involved having a lot of anxiety, panic attacks, mood swings, crying spells, and a disinterest in life. My career no longer appealed to me. I hated getting up for work every morning and had little to no focus. I can remember being in the shower on one occasion and my little one walks in the bathroom in her walker and just sits there and screams and cries at the top of her lungs. I think that is one of the lowest points I’ve had as a new mom. I leaned my head on the shower wall and cried as well. I cried because I wanted to be away from her, cried because I felt bad for feeling that way. I cried because her father wasn’t there and because I just wanted to leave this earth. I’ve never had suicidal thoughts but I have had thoughts of feeling like I’d be better off if I wasn’t here or if I never had her. It hurts to say that because she my biggest blessing and greatest achievement. I just struggled with feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, irritability, shame, and guilt. At times I still struggle with these feelings.

Postpartum depression is the main reason I decided to go to therapy. In the short clip below I elaborate on why I go to therapy.


Mental Health

Here’s a blog post I wrote pre-pregnancy and baby but I thought I’d still share it. Someone may need to hear this!

I read something the other day that perfectly described what a lot of us are going through in our late twenties and early thirties. The tweet described these years as the soul crushing years, and in so many ways that is true. The tweet went on to say how most people in this age group are struggling to cope with life changes. Our group of friends is getting smaller, our parents are getting older, and in addition to dealing with that we are dealing with financial messes we created in our early twenties. Many of us are also trying to juggle our new careers, marriage, babies, and our mental and physical health.

“We often are tired, not because we’ve done too much, but because we’ve done too little of what sparks a light in us.”

Alexander Den Heijer

Transitioning form graduate school to working full time was the hardest for me. By the time I entered my career I was my heaviest and was having a hard time motivating myself to get healthy and in shape. This took a toll on my mental health. I would often find myself laying in my room depressed. I wouldn’t go out and if I did it was often to spend money on shoes, makeup, or clothes. I truly believe that everyone at some point in their life deals with some form of depression; the stages after graduate school were definitely mine. I found it hard to cope with these new feeling of stress, depression, and financial instability. I thank God for praying parents, because I often think that if it was not for their prayers and continual love and support I would have sunk deeper into depression. One of the things that really helped me is that my parents instilled in me the love that God has for me and that I could always take things to him in prayer.

Often times we do not want to speak to people about what is going on in our lives because we’re afraid of being judged and find it hard to find someone we can trust. Let’s be real although it may come from a good place often our loved ones can be overly opinionated and judgmental. Even though you may not want to hear it sometimes it’s necessary to listen and process what your loved ones are saying. My mom would often tell me, “Idle hands are the devils playground.” This made me pour a lot more into doing things that I loved. I began to really dabble in makeup, outside activities, and considered taking cosmetology classes. I got out of bed and took more stock in my appearance. I began to make sure that I put more effort into my physical, mental, and emotional health. I started to pamper myself by getting my nails done once a month, keeping my hair done, and often tried to find the cheapest and latest ways to improve my style. I also began to make sure I got out the bed and out the house and tried different activities. I’m sure that my mother meant something more along the lines of community service, but it is hard for someone to be present and help others when they are hurting.

One thing I think that needs to be said is that when you are in a negative or vulnerable space you have to unplug form the matrix. Social media is both a gift and a curse. It’s great for networking and keeping in contact with friends and loved ones, but it also allows an avenue for negative thoughts and people to enter your life. Everything that glitters is not gold and everyone that is smiling in your face is not for you. Time shows peoples true colors and I encourage you to not let negative people and thoughts reside in your life. Social media allows us to see a lot of people’s success but not what it took to get there. With everything there is a process, and everyone’s journey is different.

Ultimately, the most important thing you have to learn during this time of life is how to unwind, relax, and surround yourself with positive and supportive people. You may not have the money to take a trip to Cancun, but you can find a nature trail to hike, kayak, exercise, or travel to interesting locations close to home. This isn’t the time to jump from relationship to relationship. This is the time to continue to get to know yourself and what interest you. Make new friends, enjoy life, explore, save money, but most importantly put God first.

Mental Health Check-in will be a regular segment on the blog. Email me, dm me, or leave me a comment if there is anything you’d like to unload or share. Sometimes just having someone to listen can ease whatever it is your dealing with. Please also take it to God in prayer!