2014 A Year In Review
I achieved something this year that surprised me. With reckless honesty I was able to reach out and connect to an invaluable support system.
Last year at this time my little 3.5 month old was experiencing sleep regression and I was losing my mind. I no longer had the energy to keep my game face on. The tough-girl facade built up over the last 33 years was crumbling under the weight of hormones and sleep deprivation.
In the past, if I had to fall apart it would be in front of my current partner, the one person allowed to witness my hair letting down. This often sent said-partner running for the hills (understandable) or to other company (not so understandable) and if it didn't I would see how far I could push them until inevitably I ended up alone. It was less damaging when I could only hurt myself.
Until one day I met someone who did not scare so easily. He gave me the space to be able to work on the cause of my issues. I was mostly happy... and then I wasn't.
When I impulsively shared my depression and anxiety on social media I felt ill, as if I had committed the ultimate social faux pas. This decision went against everything I had been taught about being tough. Even worse than that, soon everyone would know I was faking it.
Somehow shoving those skeletons into the dim glow of our computer screens illuminated a strength I never knew I could be capable of.
Ironically showing weakness makes you stronger- a lesson I was able to teach myself by diving into extremely uncomfortable territory.
Then came the rush of support. Friends I had not spoken to in years, family members, acquaintances from all corners of the world- to say it was humbling is an understatement. So many stories shared from other vulnerable souls dealing with their own demons. It was all out in the open now and we were able to speak about it knowing we weren't alone.
The more honest I am with myself and others- the more I’m improving as a human, mother and partner. Nothing is more important to me.
Looking like you have it all is difficult. It’s a thing many of my peers struggle with. We are educated women, told to have fulfilling careers that make us happy and the world a better place. Having children is not supposed to stop us or even slow us down. But it does, and it should.
Having Lavinia literally turned my world inside out. It shook secrets and scabs out of my pockets that I had been harboring for decades. I no longer knew myself, it was terrifying and raw.
And with most things in my life- I didn't know how bad it was until it got better. For now I have my bearings again and I’m rowing my ass off in a new direction. Toward the truth this time. Even if it's difficult.
I've changed and grown more in the past twelve months than I have in the last twelve years. Thank you 2014 for such incredible challenges and gifts. I’m hanging on tightly for the next ride.