Reblogged: Honesty Is The Best Policy


There are people on Twitter I seem to have “known” for quite awhile. As it often is with Twitter, I am never sure how we “met” but there are a few I feel a stronger connection to than others. We may not talk often, but they are the ones I check in with from time to time. This post is from one of those people and it’s a really insightful and honest post about Postpartum Depression and Anxiety.

All too often we do not reach out for help because of stigma or because we think this is just the way things are supposed to be. This time around, she’s doing it differently. Go show her some love as she steps out into her brave new world.

godlessnurse

And while that title may be trite, it’s true. And it’s never been more true for me than it is right now.

I had to finally admit something to myself that I didn’t allow myself to admit fifteen years ago after the birth of my son.

I suffer from postpartum depression.

There. I said it.

Just typing that statement felt like a huge release of emotion, baggage, and above all, it allows me to move forward with a plan.

Fifteen years ago, after the birth of my son, I knew something wasn’t quite right. I felt anxious all the time, sad beyond what may be considered the ‘baby blues’, hypervigilant, unable to relax and rest whenever my son would sleep during the day, and the inability to turn off my brain and not worry about the smallest detail. These feelings continued well into my six-week checkup, but when my OB…

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Struggling to Find Discipline


This next week, I have a lot of writing to do. Writing which is not for this blog. I am managing content at another blog and then at the end of the week, auditioning for Listen to Your Mother.

It is a bit frustrating then, to be sitting here with a ideas hiding in the shadows, refusing to come out and play nicely. Right now, it doesn’t matter. But it will matter once the week gets rolling. This past week has been a busy one which has not allowed for much beyond the normal hubbub of daily life. I skipped writing one day this past week, in fact. I have let it go, missing writing that one day, because well, I couldn’t go back and fix it. The sleep was lovely at least.

It’s funny when you start writing on a daily basis how much a part of your life it becomes. Writing is like breathing for those of us who hold it dear to our hearts. It changes your soul, your pattern of thinking. It allows you to see things differently as life swirls around you.

Right now, the thing which frustrates me most is the lack of direction in my writing, the scattered subject matter. I took the time to pull together an editorial calendar but have yet to stick to it which is disappointing to say the least. I believe the primary issue with this is that I rarely look at the calendar. Instead, I just write when the mood strikes rather than planning ahead. Scheduling my writing would perhaps help with this issue. That way, at least, I wouldn’t be sitting here, at 10pm at night struggling to reach 500 words.

Another issue is that I am terribly old fashioned when it comes to writing notes and keeping a schedule. I adore pen & paper for this sort of thing. My editorial calendar is currently only in Google Drive. Perhaps if I took it and transferred it to my planner it would help. But then again, I haven’t been using my planner either so who knows.

One of my biggest weaknesses, folks. Discipline. I get things done right when they need to be done (and sometimes after). I have always been this way. I am struggling to improve this but in the meantime, I get angry with myself when I miss deadlines or don’t stick to a plan I have set for myself.

I am determined to change it this year, this issue with discipline. I intend to push myself harder than I have in the past and hold myself more accountable to my deadlines and tasks I have agreed to accomplish within a certain time frame.

Does any of this sound familiar to you? Do you also struggle with the discipline needed to stay on course? What do you use to motivate you? To push through the procrastination stage into the “get ‘er done” phase? Leave your best tips in the comments below. I need them to make this the best year I have ever had – no more excuses!

 

Announcing Karen Kleiman as #PPDChat guest on August 12, 2013


I am THRILLED to be announcing the upcoming guest for #PPDChat!!!

Karen Kleiman is an expert in the field and is also the person who inspired me to start this blog so any time I get to collaborate with her, I get very excited. Read more about Karen’s great work here.

On Monday, August 12, 2013, Karen will be joining us for a discussion about Scary/Intrusive Thoughts. This topic is often at the top of the search terms which lead people to my blog. In fact, I recently made a graphic of all the search terms which led people to my blog relating to this very topic. There were quite a few variations as you can see for yourself:

Postpartum OCD search terms

Also, my top post for the past week was “Do the Thoughts Ever Go Away?

No one really has definitive answers as the thoughts fade, but even as a parent, we all struggle with the “what if’s” of the challenge in raising our kids and keeping them safe.

Join Karen and I as we navigate this important topic on Monday, August 12, 2013 at 8:30pm ET. We look forward to seeing you there!

Whatever Wednesday: When you ask Craigslist to solve writer’s block


The next time I struggle with writer’s block, this is the approach I’m taking. Not for serious value but for beyond hilarious comedic value.

So far, responses have ranged from serious to well, not so serious. Generally those who have responded seem to genuinely want to help me. Not all in the way I asked, but still. They want to help. Which is sweet. Sort of. Unless they’re wanting to exchange pictures and be more than friends. Then it’s disturbing because it makes me wonder if they are even capable of reading English. Or thinking of anything north of their equator if you know what I mean.

Pasted below are actual initial responses (in no particular order) to the writer’s block ad I posted. Also, in all fairness, I made it CLEAR I was a blogger in search of a topic. Everything was fair play.

No, I’m not telling you what or where I posted it nor am I linking to it. Enjoy.

Happy Wednesday.

1) seriously, if it is so hard to find something to write about then perhaps you shouldn’t write anything. i blogged for years and have only posted when i felt compelled to write. if you have a deadline then that’s a different issue. it really depends on what you NEED to write. (honestly the most awesome advice of the evening. SO very true.) 

2) Well, what in the world is your blog about?  You didn’t mention any topic!  Politics? Religion? Fitness? Babies? Sex? Speaking of sex, here’s one for you from my personal life (which I probably shouldn’t be sharing):  is it common for married women to stop having sex with their husbands?

 Ok, so I gave you some type of topic to write about. (Yes, yes you have. But whoa. When you email people from Craigslist, you never know where your email will end up. Perhaps you shouldn’t email people on Craigslist to begin with, buddy. Just a thought.)

 

3) I could probably help or at least attempt to depending on the subject matter. I usually have spare ideas I’m not using for anything in particular

and I can be pretty decent when it comes to finding information on Google
but if that’s no help I can still be useful as a repository for obscure trivia.
like did you know attempting to sing “Be Prepared” in the lion king Jeremy Irons “threw out” his voice on the line “You wont get a sniff without me!”
and fellow cast member Jim Cummings had to fill in for him the rest of the song. (this one ended up telling me about a George Washington Shaped Chicken Nugget which sold for 8k on e-bay. When he said repository for obscure trivia? He wasn’t kidding.) 

 

4) So, what do you write about generally? (I’m not even going to bore you with where this went) 

 

5) You know, I was all gung-ho about helping you get to new ideas …

Until you mentioned psychoanalzying The Biebs and getting deep into one of his songs.
Then I realized that you already had enough genius for both of us.
But if you’d like someone to talk to while getting into that adorable boy’s mind, then I’d glady offer my services. As long as you understand why I’d go worked up over it .. I mean, come on … that hair. (this one led to a really awesome full on conversation about the Biebs, Elvis Presley, the Stones, The Beatles, confused HS kids, Shakira, and a whole bunch of other stuff. He’s awesome. Even more awesome than the Bieb’s hair.) 
6) I doubt this will even reach you because I’m sure the second you posted that ad on Craigslist, your email inbox was swarmed by dozens of guys who are a dime a dozen. I’m not one of those guys. I’m 33, HWP, South American and very down to earth. Love to cook, soccer, the outdooors. I am fun, sarcastic, caring, friendly, athletic, well-educated & mannered. I reside in the (redacted)area. Love to try new things, places, food, in this case friendships.If you read this and are interested AND you’re not a spambot, pls reply and we can go from there and exchange pics. (Umm.. okay, but Dude? I was asking for help with writing. In the Strictly Platonic section. I am NOT looking for a sexy latin ma.. oh.. wait.. HI. Just kidding. I deleted his email without responding after I copied the text here.) 

7) maybe you could write about those homeless hotspots put on by sxsw…or even how commercial sxsw has become… (legitimate ideas, granted, and something I’d noticed via Twitter this past week. But not light enough for my Wednesday post. Thanks for playing.) 

8 ) What exactly are you stuck on? (Bubble gum. Super glue. Batman? Harvey Dent….Can we trust him? Wonder-woman? That funny purple blob otherwise known as Barney? Taffy? Toe jam? Rubber Cement? Elmer’s Glue? That strange sticky stuff on the school bus seat?) 

9) Well I;ve got brain tsunamis LOL I am crative, but run into the same problem sometimes. But I like the idea of being helpful. (Oh the cringe-worthiness of this one. Explain to me what “crative” is, please. Anyone? Bueller? Also, I don’t think we’re suffering from the same thing here. I know how to spell and use proper grammar.) 

10) Yes, I would like to help you, do you use yahoo instant messenger or gchat? (maybe. but i’m already writing, also, why does your email address name show up as “tom green” when you’ve signed your name as something completely different? Be funny on your own without invoking the name of someone professionally hilarious.) 

On the Third day of Dismissmass: Three Healthy Babies


On the third day of Dismissmas,

Postpartum sent to me

Three perfect babies

Two depressed parents,

And a wailing mess in a pear tree.

 

How many of you have heard (or thought) this zinger: “But the baby’s perfectly healthy. Why on earth are you sad?”

As a mother of two children who were born perfectly healthy and one who was born with a cleft palate and needed major surgery at just 9 days old to help her breathe and eat, I know what it is like to be on both sides that statement.

Yes, having a child with additional needs is hard. But just because baby is perfectly healthy does not mean that Mama is going to be happy after giving birth. There are a whole host of reasons for mom not to be happy. Thyroid, Anemia, Vitamin D deficiency, history of personal or family psychiatric illness, perceived trauma during the childbirth experience, hormones that are now all out of whack and not shifting back into place properly, financial stress, moving, life decisions, etc.

Those who say things like “Baby’s healthy. You shouldn’t be sad” have never been depressed after the birth of a child. It happens. It’s real. And it is absolutely not yours OR the baby’s fault.

The next time someone says that to you – respond with this: “You’re healthy too. Why aren’t you helping me get healthy too?”

Then snap a picture. Trust me. It’ll be a Kodak moment for sure.

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