Saturday, June 9, 2018

Depression has been my greatest teacher

Communication with other people has not been my strong suit. Every time I would speak up for myself ,whether it was bullies, my teachers, my peers and even my family I got shot down. I was made to feel like I was too sensitive and emotional. It started an unhealthy addiction to perfection. It made me look at myself like something was wrong with me. I learned that outside forces defined me that what people thought and said were true. I learned that my thoughts we're heavy and scary and that they were true. I felt unsafe unloved. No matter who was there for me or who tried to show they cared and loved me I was completely overwhelmed bye things that happened to me and continue to happen to me and my emotions. I didn't realize what was happening. I didn't realize what damage I was doing to my mind and my body and the beliefs I was forming. I didn't know any other way to live unless I had something to fix something to make it all better. But it never did. It never did get better. The only thing I was able to do was to hide it better.
These last few years I have learned so much and change so much. I've experienced such darkness and pain that I didn't think it was humanly possible to experience. All my time and energy was sucked away by worrying and fighting and struggling and being triggered. But I've learned something from all of this. What I have gone through is worth it if it helps somebody else. I pray no one else has to step into that complete dark and hopelessness and fear and struggle. Every now and again it comes back and I feel it and I fear it and I struggle against it. But I've learned that fighting only brings resistance. And if you feel like you have to fight something the trick to fighting is........ patience. Patience with yourself. Patience with the events and circumstances of your life and trying to not bring fear and resistance and negative emotions to it. There is a force that wants you to think these things. That wants you to doubt yourself and doubt that there's any way out or any hope or any direction. Depression anxiety and Fibromyalgia and people in my life that trigger me have all been my greatest teachers of patience. We are like clay in the potters hands. Gods hands. We can allow our struggles to shape us or to crumble under the pressure.
The more I don't want something the more it persists. What if instead I look at what I can learn and what adversity can teach me? What if these frustrating patterns and addictions to negativity and seeing myself as a victim so early on in life can teach me something? Even those people who get under my skin and trigger me or make me think I am a bad person or I can't do it anymore can teach me. They teach me the most about being patient. Patient as I try to not control and fix things. Patient as I try to search for answers that benefit me and benefit them. Patience that God has brought these people into my life for a reason. That God has brought in all of this into my life for a reason. And that storm that seems to be circling around ,confusing me, scaring me and taking my very breath away, seems to dissipate in an instant as fast as it came.
 I'm so grateful that I have learned what my triggers are. I'm so grateful that I know when I'm triggered and I'm aware of what's going on. Even though I haven't learned how to stop being triggered, I overcome it faster each time. I am not willing to devote my energy in my time to it any longer than it needs to be. I need to allow God to calm the storm inside so I can see clearly and know that it's okay. I can know that it's Depression or Anxiety or any triggering event or person and that I can't control that outside force. You can know. These perceived weaknesses can't control me.It can't control you. It's only powerful when I fear it and give it into it. When I start down that path of feeling worthless and not liking myself and not liking what's happening to me. I know that path of self loathing and destructive thoughts. I won't stay on that path. I can turn around. I can choose another path. So can you. I can choose another way. So can you. He shows me that way. He shows you.But only if I am listening and only if I allow it and ask for help.
 I would encourage you to listen to your messengers and what you can learn. Slow down and listen. It may feel like there is too much and you are overwhelmed. I have been there. Don't let the storms on the outside come inside you. The answers and strength is inside you. Stand strong and build the strong inside you to not be blown about by very wind and withstand the storms of life.

Friday, May 4, 2018

What to do when life seems to be coming up weeds instead of roses

It's springtime and yet again we forgot to spray fertilizer on our lawn. So our yard is covered in yellow dandelions. Weeds seem to grow anywhere and come out of nowhere. This is true of our thoughts as well and the stories we tell ourselves. I've been telling myself stories since I was a little girl. Every time my parents fought or I was bullied at school. I was telling the story of victim. I felt worthless and powerless in my brain continue to look for that evidence. Even now when I tell people my story my body goes into fight or flight as if it is living it all over again. It's really frustrating because I have changed or I'm trying to. I've seen more evidence of hope and my worth as a child of God. I love telling my story because it energizes me. I took my story, something negative, and found a positive in it to empower me and to be able to use it to empower others.
I have learned there's power in letting go. Letting go of control to what I could control and that was me. I had to find out where I was giving my power away. I had parasites, sibo(small bacteria overgrowth)my health and the illness identity of so many diagnoses other people's talks its behavior that I'm constantly around, a messy house. Where are you giving your power away? Where are you saying I can't take it anymore? Where are you saying I am sick and tired of this?

We so often give people, achievements what we do power over us.Its who we are the matters not what we do or our past or even our future but what we are doing now. Our worth is from the divine within each of us. How we tell our story matters because our brains look for evidence to support our thoughts which may or may not be true. We can be strong despite our circumstances. We can look at our stories and other way to build us up and those around us rather than tear us down. Even though dandelions pop up all over my yard they aren't ugly to me but a beautiful yellow flower. They do tend to take over so they do need to be dealt with. And so do our thoughts. But not with force and resistance but understanding and love and getting your brain to just start to look for evidence of the positive and find the beauty in the weeds.

How will you take your power back?

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Fatigued and failing

I used to wake up on days like this, stormy and dark, feeling like a failure already because I hurt so bad. I knew I would not be able to do what I wanted to do for the day before the day had even started. This is the life of chronic illness. You are forced to choose what you want to do because of how little energy you have. You may not have Fibro but it seems like many woman these days are walking around exhausted, pulled in so many directions and feeling guilty because they got nothing done. Exhausted, out of fuel and running on empty. If a car ran out of fuel it wouldn't be able to keep going yet we do that to ourselves constantly. We push and get things done anyway. It totally zaps the energy and joy out of life and you.

If I try to push and keep going there is a terrible price to pay. It comes in the form of being exhausted in mind body and spirit. I wake up with my skin feeling like it is on fire and completely wiped like I had run a marathon or something. I have been struggling with fatigue for a while now and just when I think I have figured out my pace something shifts or changes. It can be frustrating but the little scientist sees a challenge and an experiment.

If I can only do one thing what would it be?

I have so much to do but no gas in the tank. My choice is practically made for me. Days like today are a warning that I better park myself and not force anything or I will be sorry.

I am learning to focus my mind, heart and body and God. That when I put him first everything else falls into place. That means choosing that one thing I want to do today and reassessing if I can do more. Everything else I can do after that is like icing on the cake. I take my big bowl of leftover icing with a spoon and I sit there and lick what is left, totally in the moment and sweet victory.

 These are the days when my priorities become so clear because I don't want to be too tired for my family.That means letting A LOT of tasks go so I can focus on just the important ones. Those priorities are my relationships. I like to think of it like this.

Imagine you had to leave your home and you could only take what you could carry.

 These are your priorities.

My God,my family and myself and food and water.

"The main thing is to keep the main thing the main thing "Steven R Covey

"When you put God first everything falls into place or drops out of our lives" Ezra Taft Benson

What is your main thing?

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

How you can get the suport you need as a mom to succeed in your home and life

Lately I have been telling my story wherever I go. There is power in our stories. Not only our stories but from where we were to where we are now. I can't believe how far I have come from being a walking stress ball and time bomb ready to go off. Really, it was no kind of life or at least at the time I didn't know how to love my life the way it was because I was completely in the dark. I was so much in my head and the stories I was telling myself since I was a kid and then adding to it as I went along.

So what has changed?

I hope you can see the change. I feel the light back in my life even though I am still sick with Fibromyalgia and always having to stop or change my thoughts instead of just running with them. It is as easy to play the victim card, self pity and self loathing as it is to be the victor, humble and self loving when things come into the light. The trick is to trick your brain. Lead your brain along a new path you want it to go. I started doing that 2 years ago and already I can notice when I am triggered and course correct quicker. I can fill my mind with light instead of negative and dark. When I say its easy I mean the choice is. Once you have the knowledge it is up to you to get help and act on it. Getting help and support can look different in so many ways. It may mean therapy, it may mean medicine. It may mean finding routines to keep you out of the dark in the first place. I love what Elder Uchtdorf said in a talk Bearers of Heavenly Light

"Darkness is not an indication that there is no light. Most often, it simply means we’re not in the right place to receive the light."

 I was in the wrong place it wasn't me. I wasn't a horrible person after all. I just needed to stand for what and who I was, a daughter of God. I needed to get in a better place to be more open to the support my Heavenly Father was trying to give me. I want you to find support and receive what you need and please be kind and watch that inner critic.

I needed therapy. I am not ashamed. The hardest part was after the sessions I was left with big emotions and not sure what to do next. The darkness and hopelessness were still there. That gave me an idea. It was the feelings of what to do next, where to start to pick up the pieces of your life or how to keep going broken and confused that was the problem. My heart started to reach out more for opportunities to find woman in distress or in stress mode. Most of us are stressed but what if it becomes chronic? I saw how woman were trying so hard to get everything done and feeling unaccomplished at night. A light bulb went off. These woman, you, may be in stress mode and not even know it. I know because that was me.

To make things more interesting, we are all different in our beliefs and thoughts, our challenges and demands on our time. The long lists, the trying to get more done and to be a better mom weighed heavily on me and so many woman I met. We all try so hard but feel like we got nothing done or nothing fun is on our list. We are doing and busy but maybe a little lost because we have become just a mom. Lost and in survival mode and wanting more but not sure how.

I haven't been blogging as much because I started my own group, Motivated mamas. I wanted to create a safe space for moms to go and find the help and support so needed. Motivation comes down to wanting to jump out of bed and start your day to pulling the covers back over your head. My hope is that this community will grow and that we as moms can be our best selves and help our children do the same. The difference for me to being excited for my day and pulling back the covers is YOU. To be there for you when the fears, I don't know what to do next or where to start...... creeps in. You know you want a change but it all feels so overwhelming. We cannot act from a place of stuck and overwhelm. Whether you have followed my journey or just found me today. I hope you come and find what you are looking for. Kiss the stress away and your babies more!

Check it out and share with others moms.

Friday, March 23, 2018

The light in my Depression

The last couple of weeks have been emotional for me. Some days it just feels like you're being buried by everything in your life. Some days I think I'm free of depression. Then without warning it just hits me.It can be like a tidal wave or small chains and shackles pulling me down slowly. Today was one of those tidal wave days. It knocked me down and I didn't think I would get back up. I had several things that we're very difficult to deal with,all at the same time and I didn't see how they would ever be fixed?
 I felt ALONE.
I couldn't SEE.

Last week on Friday morning I woke up and the cloud was still there. I just kept crying and was just so tired. I knew what was happening but felt powerless to stop it. Fear had rolled in. I've been at that place of feeling hopeless. It is heavy. It is relentless. It used to be everyday. I was scared that it was going to stay again. I felt weak but knew I couldn't let it stay. It was really hard but I sent a text to some of my closest friends and ask them to pray for me. I knew I didn't have the strength that day. Rather, I forgot what strength I do have when I put my trust in God. I knew I didn't want to let the sadness take over. I gave my friends no explanation just that I couldn't talk right then andt I just needed their prayers and love.

 I eended up sleeping all morning and anytime I was awake I would cry. Mornings have been very different for me the last year or so. It has been one of study, meditation and deciding I was in charge of my day. I made things happen. This was a heavy dark morning and out of the norm of what I have been doing.
It wasn't until the afternoon that I was able to get my achey, tired, and beaten body up out of bed. I hadn't eaten anything yet.I was able to eat. I chose to go outside. I needed the sun. I needed the light. When the darkness comes I look for the light. I try to crowd out the thoughts and darkness with scriptures and talks. I could tell the Lord heard my prayers and the prayers of my friends. I felt that strength.It is hard to explain how the darkness was lifted ,but I am grateful that I could get up. I could recognize what was happening. I could make small choices to lead me to bigger ones. Choice over fear and feeling paralyzed.

 It was definitely scary to think that I might not get out. But then I knew if I fell, if I got stuck, that I was letting the circumstances dictate how I should feel. I know this is no longer how I want to think. It is no longer who I want to be. I know I'm stronger than I was before, that I am building better self awareneness ,but I also know that I couldn't have done it without the power of prayer and God's love and the wonderful people around me.
 I'm feeling hopeful again and it is growing every day.The feelings I was feelings are not so intense anymore. They're still there. But that heavy weight has been lifted. I can find my way to the light and so can you. Some days it requires all the strength that you have. Other days you just stay hidden and hope it ends soon. I know both of those kind of days. And I choose to crawl out of the dark hole of self pity and despair. I choose to let my friends be there for me. I choose the light over the darkness.

 What do you choose?

 Light at last: Maybe you aren't there yet, free and happy, but I know you can choose to end the power and control Depression or any diagnosis or struggle has on you. You choose or something else chooses for you. It only has power if we let it. Let the light in. Let this be your healing step with many more to follow. I believe in you wherever you are. Come into the light. Come out of the darkness of whatever thoughts or feelings you have that drag you down. Choose.

Friday, March 9, 2018

Old story new begining

I started blogging about 10 years ago. I had just been diagnosed with Depression and Celiac disease. It felt like a punch in the gut and that I would never eat anything I wanted or be happy again!!! My little spark of hope went out and I felt unsupported and in total darkness. This little blog fueled my desire to get out what was in my head and I hoped to find other woman depressed and lonely or to help them. Although, just starting I could barely take care of myself. I had no idea what I was doing. All I knew is I was doing it and that it gave me something to do and a voice. I didn't have a voice before or a self esteem or even know why I was a mom. Pretty bleak and depressing wouldn't you say?

A few years later I thought moving to a bigger safer neighborhood would take care of all my woes. There was someone in my church that was bullying me and it only kept me down and powerless. In fact my whole life I really never felt good physical or mentally and saw myself as a victim wherever I went. I didn't know that was what I was thinking though. So I was always looking for a way out. I wanted to feel safe and I didn't. I moved into my new house and new hope moved in too. It didn't take long to see that it didn't matter where I was. The pain and the unresolved issues at my other home and my whole life just followed me. Plus, I was new and didn't know anyone. Everyone was very friendly and nice but I had this big secret that I thought no one would want to really be my friend. I was alone, a victim and getting sicker by the day. I was such a joy to be around....NOT! Again who would want to be my friend. How could they? I was a mess. My home was a mess. Little did I know that God would turn my inward and outward mess into a message. That the darkness would be turned to light. Hopelessness into a spark of hope.

Before this light really could grow and I had to experience my final blow. I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and IBS before my fourth child was born. My little new born baby was also struggling with food and we found out he was allergic to almost everything. I didn't realize that I would share the same fate. I was too exhausted to blog and to do the school lessons. I did this while I wrote about my journey. I thought maybe other moms would want to do the lessons. I also wrote about what I was going to feed this baby. Nothing in my life felt easy breezy. To keep my sanity I prayed and I wrote when my mind was clear enough to do so. I was sleep walking through my life. Until....a friend woke me up. She invited me to this group of woman. I have written about them before. It was the first time I heard me too! I had finally found woman that knew what I was going through. They understood and I was safe. I never felt safe before, loved or supported and it was all how I saw the world. If these woman could rise from their pain and circumstances. I could to!

The final piece of the puzzle was when I learned how our thoughts have the power to create. That I was creating my misery. It was a hard pill to swallow and it didn't go down well at first. However, because of these woman I had started gathering evidence that I could look at things differently. That it was okay to feel differently then I actually felt and that I could retrain my brain and my pain. What?? I am telling you right now. I did not expect God to tell me to look at myself when I was the victim here. There were people who hurt me and continued to hurt me as I relived it over and over. Depression wasn't me. It was a thought pattern that turned into a chemical change in my brain because I had been thinking this way for so long. It still needs to be diagnosed and dealt with by a health care professional because it is a chemical imbalance. But there is hope because there are things we can do in the meantime and people who have overcome it, like me. Winter is still hard but I have built up my awareness over the last 2 years. Every time I catch dark thoughts creeping in I course correct a little easier and faster. I no longer stay in the darkness but look for the light until it crowds out the darkness again. I do it as many times as it takes.

I have learned:
  1. To watch my thoughts and to turn my thoughts to God
  2. That my happiness is my choice and not due to my circumstances
  3. To heal my relationships with God, myself, my family
  4. To allow forgiveness and to let go of victim mentality
  5. To heal my mindset and view of time and money

Most of all when I want answers or want someway to analyze or point fingers it always comes back to me. I don't blame myself for this anymore. I know I didn't know any better so I kept going with what I knew. I know my blueprint for happiness. My thoughts create good in my life or bad. There is always another obstacle over the one I get over. How else are we supposed to grow. It is part of Gods plan for us to struggle and grow from it. We might as well be happy. I tried being miserable and that didn't work so well. So if you are asking why me? Why not you? What are you supposed to learn from this? How can it help you grow where you are and how can you teach it to others? These are the questions I ask myself everyday. The dark thoughts still come but I do not let them stay too long before questioning them and understanding why they are there. Thoughts are thoughts. Thoughts I have shared with you have helped me learn and grow and figure things out. I am ready to serve deeper and grow this idea born out of my struggles into really helping people. I will be moving soon to a new website. Stay posted. Stay with me as I again tackle my next obstacle. I will continue to blog here until this move is complete and I want you to come with me! Stay tuned. Stay happy. Keep learning and going! Stay with me because I want to know you better.

Friday, February 2, 2018

3 way to let go without forcing

I have always been a person who gets frustrated when I can't do something or figure something out fast enough. I was like that as a kid. I have always been so tight. A big stress ball. My mom told me that one day at recess she watched me play dodge ball. She said that I closed my eyes and tightened up when the ball was thrown every time. When I would get out she saw me physically relax and let go. Needless to say I was a tense kid at school and at home. At night my Mom would have to sing to me and rub my arm to calm me down. I can't really do that to myself but it works like a charm😉.

Since I have started listening to my body more I have noticed how alone and weighted down I feel some days. I just want the pain, the piles of things not getting done because I am sick or too tired, to go away ,but it doesn't. I have heard that what you resist persists. Like a needy person always hanging around.What we focus on grows. I see this neediness in my kids sometimes that no matter how much time and attention I give to them, its not enough. They want more. This is how it feels today with the projects, self care and self improvement I am attempting to do. It feels like a needy child that whatever I give isn't enough.The house will never get clean. I will never finish. There is not enough time.
 What is a reoccurring thought that you are resisting? Why are you resisting it? I believe a lot of times we resist because we are fearful and wanting to be done with what is ailing us or weighing heavily on our mind. Why do we hold on so hard and have trouble letting go?
I was also told how sensitive I was and that I shouldn't cry or I should be able to get over something. Those who told me this meant well, but that became a big trigger for me and a ding in my self esteem armor. Our sense of self protects us from slander and negative arrows thrown at us daily. But if we don't have much of an armor then it all becomes an attack and sinks deep into our heart and becomes a belief of who we are. What did they know? All of us big or small are just trying to make sense of our world and to feel safe. So why did I ever let someone who is struggling to know who they are themselves to have any effect on how I felt about me? Surely there is more inside than what they see on the outside. We are sons and daughters of God and shouldn't be beating ourselves up or believing others who don't realize the pain they are causing.

 I want to share with you 3 way that you can stop resisting your true feelings and start to let go. Imagine it like a balloon. You fill that balloon with all your worries, insecurities and old beliefs that don't serve you anymore. Fill it up and then let it go. Watch it go up into the sky until you can't see it anymore. Letting go like this feels natural and freeing and there is no forcing. I don't want you to be a stress ball like me as a little girl tense and waiting to be knocked down. The 3 ways to let go without forcing are 1)Learn to give up expectations 2) Be able to speak words of validation and affirmation. 3) Make self care a priority.
1)Learn to give up expectations on how you should or shouldn't feel or what you should or shouldn't get done. Perfection drives expectations which then drives frustration and overwhelm. You can't do anything well when you are overwhelmed. I have talked before of what happens when overwhelm is in the drivers seat. A lot of bad driving that is what! Swerving and honking and cursing and only stopping if it wants too. You have to give up what your day should look like and how much time you have or don't have. You have to give up labels that others gave you.
2)Be able to speak words of validation and affirmation to ourselves. I have found that a lot of our pain comes from needing validation or that things will be okay but we often don't hear it. Why not tell yourself how proud you are of you and what you are doing well. When I started doing this I no longer looked for it from others and I got more compliments from them anyway. Another thing you can do is to pray and ask God how he feels about you. He won't hurt you or leave you comfortless but you have to ask.
3) Lastly, you need to be doing self care. It needs to be in our schedules like an appointment. It is important because you can't do the inner work if your vessel is breaking down. You can't get to your destination if your check engine light is on in your car or you have a leaky gas tank and no energy. Self care is a must!

Start implementing these 3 thing in your life and you will be amazed at what wants to be freed. You will feel lighter and free to be you and create a better life for you and others around you each and every day.