Monday, January 28, 2019

Perfectly Imperfect - Behind the Selfie

That quote...it's me. I hide behind my Facebook profile, happy as can be. There are no tantrums, no fights, no worries. 

Oh how misleading that is. 

The truth - and this is hard to write - is that I am drowning, constantly. I feel like everything is out of control. My kids, my health, sometimes even my marriage. My perfect little boys? Talking back, throwing toys, beating each other up like they are in a boxing ring. My perfect marriage? Far from it. Don't get me wrong, we are very much in love - for ten years now - but there are still kinks. Still arguments. Still trying to find our groove all these years later. 

We had kids young and fast. That surprise positive test came on our two month wedding anniversary. We hardly know what married life is like without children. And you know what? It's HARD! We are now three kids and nearly eight years in with daily struggles. I don't know if it's normal to still have trouble finding our place this far in, but - truth bomb - we do. I sometimes wonder if it would be different had we been given more time to just be married before kids were in the picture, but that wasn't God's plan for us. 

Instead, we tread water. We lean on God and try to follow his lead. In fact, his plan has led us to four states in the time we've been married. It's put us through so many trials that we never thought we'd get through, yet we are still here. But going strong? That depends on the day for me. There's always that voice in my head telling me I can't do it, I'm not worth it, I'm failing miserably in every aspect of my life.

So I take a selfie. I post something about being #blessed. I create a world where everything is perfect. I write a status about how sweet my boys are as they throw punches with their fists and their words. After all, no one wants the world thinking that their family struggles to get along on a daily basis.

I plead, I punish, I pray. I take away toys and send them to their rooms. A lot of the time I feel like a failure. But sometimes, they apologize without being asked. They are sincerely sorry, I can see it in their eyes. And then as the day closes out with dinner, they pray. They thank God for their family and tell Him how much they love each individual member. My heart fills with pride and in that moment I actually feel like I am doing something right.

My point? It doesn't matter how perfect someone's social media life is, because I can't imagine there aren't daily rough patches. And if they are being honest, I believe they may just resonate with that quote the same way I did. And to you, I want to say that it's ok. You've got this. Stand tall and adjust your crown, because despite the daily feeling of defeat, you fight. And that makes you as perfect as it gets. 

Friday, January 11, 2019

Word vomit.

Well, here I am again. Empty, depressed, borderline suicidal.

We knew that the good wouldn't last forever. Yes, it's been a long time since we've dealt with this side of bipolar/borderline personality. I almost forgot how awful it is. I'm currently on day three of this valley and have spent a lot of time crying, a lot of time thinking and a lot of time trying to hide behind a smile.

But that's how it goes, isn't it? The dark cloud comes over and your whole world changes, so often for no reason at all. Reaching out, especially when suicidal, can be so difficult. There is always the cliché "Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem" and the obvious "just take deep breathes." To be 100% honest, these things just make me more irritable despite the advice giver's good intentions. Although, I guess there's nothing anyone can really say when I'm in this spot that truly helps. In fact, I've found that for me, talking is the last thing I want to do, unless it's spilling words onto the computer. Why? Because the computer doesn't talk back. I can let it all out without hearing all of the clichés out there that people think they are supposed to say when someone is depressed or be told how important and loved I am when all I want is silence.

I know how I sound, here. It's not that I don't appreciate the sentiment. I love that people care about me and try to help. It's that when I'm deeply depressed, I'm not going to believe a single word anyone says. The only voice I'm listening to is the one in my head and that's the only one that can pull me out.

I wish it wasn't this way. I have an amazing support system and I don't want to discredit that. The voice in my head reminds me that I have them to live for even though I don't deserve them and am far from good enough. And as I start to come out of it I remember that my husband holds me as I sob for no reason because he loves me. That my family and friends support me because they care. That maybe I am good enough.

And then I'm back.

Now that I've written all of this out, I can say that I'm doing better than I was when I wrote that first sentence. Just putting it all out there and working through my emotions via a keyboard has, once again, been therapeutic. I'm still not ok, I'm still anxious and tired and down. But I've remembered how much I matter, and that's something I didn't have when I started writing this morning.

With that, all I can say is "onward."