Baby Blues Out of Control
I am going to address a hard topic. Something a lot of society steps away from because there is a lot of fear and shame associated with it. Depression. Yep, I said it — depression. I did not even know I really had it until I started to come out of it. In 2004 when I had my last baby I got the “Baby Blues” in a bad way. I did not see a doctor about it because I had three little ones under the age of four and we were in the middle of a move. I just did not have the time to deal with it. I became accustom to dealing with it. The months I spent napping when my kids napped turned into years of wanting to sleep all the time. I thought it was normal — aren’t most Moms exhausted all the time even after their child is sleeping through the night?
Fast Forward 8 Years
In 2012 or so my blood work came back bad. So, I blamed my lack of energy, not wanting to be around people and general soreness on my health. I was diagnosed in 2017 with Celiac Disease. That did contribute to most of my symptoms. However, that underlying low energy and just wanting to be alone did not go away. In 2018, when my oldest started his senior year I hit rock bottom. Not only was I sad, I also did not even know what my purpose in life was now that my kids were turning into young adults.
On the outside I faked it well. I always appeared to be looking on the bright side. In fact, I was accused of being an optimist to the extreme that people thought I was unrealistic and never had a bad day in my life. If they only knew the truth was I was trying not to fall apart. I was scared that if I let on that I was miserable and sad I would crumble and be judged.
Time To Get Better
Finally in January of 2019 I decided I did not want to feel bad anymore and I started working out. I lost 29 pounds pretty much off the bat, but I was not doing it for that — I was sticking to it because I was not feeling bad emotionally. Eventually I hit a stand still with the weight loss and decided to see a trainer. My daughter was the receptionist at a local semi private gym and was working out with a fantastic lady who shed 185 pounds. She really helped my daughter deal with the stresses of high school. I knew that if there was anyone I wanted to train me it was her.
That was the best decision I have ever made regarding self care. Not only was I feeling better about myself I actually wanted to go to the gym — not necessarily to work out, but because I liked the people. I wanted to be around people for the first time in over 15 year.
I took up running in October of 2019 as another way to get my cardio in. That’s when I finally kicked depression’s ass! Don’t get me wrong — I hated running at first. I also did not just start off running. It was a gradual growth. Pretty soon I recognized that I felt really good after I ran. Next thing I knew I was able to run a mile without stopping. Three months into it I started to like it. I looked forward to my run days. I signed up for my first 5K and have been running them about once a month.
I worked in collaboration with Clique Kits for April 2020 in which I put together a mini album documenting my struggle with depression and loss of 65 pounds (so far). Here is what I used to create the album:
Here is what I created with the Clique Kit:
I divided the album up into four sections. The first section is the “Before” section. I briefly discuss what lead me to the point of finally realizing I had an issue.
The next session is about the journey I took to get out of depression. My journey is far from over. It is something I will be on for the rest of my life. I really feel like this is my life long battle, so I left extra pages to fill up as I continue to grow and change.
Naturally since I took up running I have a section for the 5Ks (maybe marathons someday) I complete.
Thrive is the last section of the album. This is a lifetime process for me. I am never really going to have an end to it. I will reach milestones along the way and learn how to thrive. Therefore creating a section celebrating that was needed. Right now it is blank because I am still waiting on pictures to be delievered, but also because I have so much more work to do and document in this section.
To see a complete walk through of the album check out my video here. You can also find links to everything I used to make your own album like mine.
Finally, here are the videos I created to make this album.
I want to thank you for allowing me to share my journey with you. If you struggle with depression please understand that you are not alone and there is nothing to be ashamed of. I would like to encourage you to seek outside help. Go talk to a counselor and don’t try to beat it on your own. There is no shame in it and if you need medication that is OK! We treat broken arms with casts and pills to help deal with the pain, right? Same holds true for mental health issues!
Until next time ~ Happy Crafting!