Misery loves company, but so does Joy. Cultivate those relationships.

The old saying is true, misery loves company, people who are miserable tend to complain and pull people down with them. They don’t want to be alone in their darkness or unhappiness and they can never understand why you aren’t as upset, outraged, or as troubled by something as they are.

We pull others down when we’re sad often without realizing it, most of the time it isn’t malicious. That’s not to say it never is, some low souls live like that on a daily bases and will suck the life out of us, but for most of us doing it, we’re simply looking to commiserate with someone.

The saying is often used, but what isn’t talk about enough is that joy and happiness also love company, and that joyous people tend to life others up.

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Book Review: The Sum of Our Days

Narrated with warmth, humor, exceptional candor and wisdom, The Sum of Our Days is a portrait of a contemporary family, tied together by the love, strong will, and stubborn determination of a beloved matriarch, the indomitable New York Times bestselling author of The House of the Spirits, Isabel Allende.

Isabel Allende reconstructs the painful reality of her own life in the wake of the tragic death of her daughter, Paula. Narrated with warmth, humor, exceptional candor, and wisdom, this remarkable memoir is as exuberant and as full of life as its creator. Allende bares her soul while sharing her thoughts on love, marriage, motherhood, spirituality and religion, infidelity, addiction, and memory—and recounts stories of the wildly eccentric, strong-minded, and eclectic tribe she gathers around her and lovingly embraces as a new kind of family.

-Goodreads

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Normalizing mental health isn’t supposed to just be acceptance

I’ve always disliked a lot of the language around normalizing mental health, because a lot of it doesn’t focus on the health it focuses on the illness and though depression and anxiety are common I want to normalize coping mechanisms and treatment not the disordered behavior that comes with them. That behavior should be recognized, treated kindly, but used as a gateway to treat it not to simply accept it.

Just because mental illness is normal doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t aim to fix it, and most people agree with that, I just often find accounts or groups who push for acceptance that this is just the way it is, and honestly the purpose of normalizing mental health is to help people feel unashamed enough to ask for help and find healthier days ahead.

If your motion is radical mental health acceptance without a push towards treatment (whether medication or not, both are fine) than you have no place amongst those trying to heal from it. It’s harmful to push for acceptance without healing and we wouldn’t be having this conversation about physical ailments. Mental health is physical heath and should be treated the same.

Easter Weekend: It Is Finished

I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me.

Galatians 2:20

Happy Easter weekend, I hope you get to spend it celebrating with loved ones. I want to take this time to talk about peace and forgiveness.

We call Christ the Prince of Peace and it’s a fitting title for the lamb who delivered us from evil. We have been given the chance to find deep lasting inner peace with him. My life hasn’t been peaceful lately, it’s been chaotic. I’ve felt posed for the next thing to rattle us. But that’s not to say there hasn’t also been deep joy, I’ve got a beautiful healthy family and a ton of love in my life. Yes there are flaws, both in me and in life, but if the Son of God can die for the flaws within me the least I can do is make peace with the flaws forced upon me by unseen circumstances.

There is a lot of talk in the self help world about inner peace and I think it’s good talk, but for someone religious I think it’s important to look beyond the guru talks and find the extremely humbling inner peace that comes with being loved, forgiven, and knowing God has a plan. If you’re anything like me you find yourself in phases were you hang onto that and phases when you manically forget that deep peace. I’ve been forgetting it in this season, so what better time than Easter to rewrap myself in the loving cloak of The Prince of Peace?

The truth is God is unmoving, it’s us who drift back and forth to Him, shall we all make an effort to bask in His Glory this weekend and find the peace and love He offers us.

Do something daily to make you hate yourself less.

The title is my main point, do something daily to make you hate yourself less, it’s pretty straight forward, but I’ve got more to say about it.

I’ve been going through a weird time. I think maybe all of us have. Prices are rising. War is threatened. Everything on the news seems to be labeled unprecedented. It’s a mess and things are messy. Even if you have a bundle of joy that keeps your spirits up its hard not to feel a little down.

I don’t hate myself, but I certainly hate things about me, and those bad habits have all proven to be hard to rid myself of. I have tried dozens of tactics to get rid of them and I’ve shed a few, but the rest hold strong. I haven’t been able to get through to myself on all fronts, but lately I’ve been doing better by simply by telling myself to do something daily that makes me hate myself less. It feels like a childish tactic, but it’s working. Perhaps because it only asks for one thing at a time, perhaps because I’m generally a happy and positive person who really does want to get rid of the ill will I have towards myself.

Regardless of why, this little moto has taken root in my mind and I am glad. Whenever I’m about to misstep it echoes in my mind. It’s also pushed me towards good habits and self-care that I would have otherwise neglected.

Maybe it can help you as well.

Go home and love your family.

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“If you want to change the world, go home and love your family.”
Mother Teresa

This quote has always been one of my favorites, because there is a deep truth to it. I’ve spoken before about how you should try to change the world on a smaller scale rather than a larger one and talked about how the small acts of kindness and selflessness are more earth shattering than people know. It’s all true and I stand behind it. Small acts of love change peoples lives. You don’t know what simply changing one life does. It starts a ripple effect that moves on through the world.

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You can believe childhood diagnostics are important while believing they are often given to willingly:

I was once asked how I could believe children were over diagnosed while having a correct childhood diagnostic. I don’t think it’s as much of an oxymoron as people think.

There are a lot of things children can be diagnosed with, but some are more common than others. Bipolar is pretty rare in a child and it’s what I got diagnosed with. I had clear symptoms, and here’s the kicker they weren’t just symptoms inconvenient to our societies adults. I say that because when faced with heavy numbered diagnoses you see that a lot of it is triggered by inconvenient. It’s why so many young boys are labeled with ADHD, then a shocking number of them stop needing treatment as they get older. Is it because they outgrew it or is it because little boys have problems sitting through hours of school with ever shortening physical play? We’re the ones that are shortening outside times and pushing non-active electives instead of more physical ones (like shop which is hardly found anymore).

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Creating goals for 2022 and reflecting on those from 2021:

A few posts ago I talked about starting my resolutions early, which I did, I’m just posting them now. It gave me a month to get them written out and it also allowed me to keep my format the same.

But wow, can you believe its already basically 2022? It sounds like such a futuristic year, not the present!

But before I get ahead of myself lets look back at 2021 and the goals I set for myself:

  • Read more than seventy books: Done, done, done. I actually surpassed this by far and made it into the triple digits this year. I’m proud of that. Audiobooks really boost your numbers!
  • Spend more time outside: I did great… for the most part. During my third trimester I hardly went outside. It was too hot and I was far to pregnant to find it enjoyable, but other than those three months I’ve done a really good job getting my time in.
  • Eat more balanced: lol, okay, I was pregnant and I had some unaddressed disordered eating to address as I talked about in my last post. I failed at this one, but this last month I’ve been starting to turn it around and since it was a 2021 goal I guess you could say I ended on a good note.
  • Be a more consistent blogger: For the most part I’ve done a lot better with this! As a hobby blogger I’d say I’m decently consistent.
  • Spend more time writing on my novels: Started strong, ended poorly. There’s not a lot more to say about this one.
  • Be better at reaching out to friends: I’ve done good at this one, especially during my pregnancy, now to keep it up with a baby!

Now for 2022, the goals I’ve soft started this past month:

  • Fix my disordered eating habits: I’m making a whole blog post about this, but I wat to address my relationship with food.
  • Read 100 books: I kept shooting low, both for 2020 and 2021. I thought 100 wasn’t realistic, but seeing how I broke 100 two years in a row, I think I can do it a third time!
  • Take more pictures: I take a ton of pictures on my cell phone, but I want to break out my big camera more and play with my photography, especially now that I have a little one capture!
  • Finish writing my current novel: Pretty self explanatory. It’s about one third done and I’d love to finish it!
  • Move more: I’m not going to sign up for a gym. I am going to try to be more active though! Rock climbing, skiing, horseback, bouncing the baby, walking the dogs. I just want to move more.

I’m going to try to keep it pretty simple this year because I know a lot of my focus will be on Oliver and my family!