I like to cry on floors.

Merry Christmas. Happy New Year.

It’s past 2AM and I gave up trying to will my self to sleep hours ago. I’m the sleepiest person you’ll ever meet, but I never actually sleep. I decided to finishing reading Ryan’s Bed by Tijan. Well, I finished it and I had to flee my bed so my tears and snotty nose wouldn’t wake my husband.

I should have been warned by the dedication how deeply this book would resonate with me. The story line was obviously great or else I would have continued to binge watch Vampire Diaries for the fourth time. But as the book unfolded I couldn’t read fast enough. And the last three words will stay will me forever. (I’m already planning to reread with this new insight).

Anyways, this blog isn’t about Tijan or her books; although, if you are looking for a new author check her out. It’s about moving forward and healing. It’s about transformation and change.

The character in the book (Mac) lost her sister to suicide. She is lost and feels like she has lost her identity. She doesn’t know who she is anymore. She feels like she is going crazy. She is lonely and broken and misunderstood. She doesn’t have words to express all the little pieces left of her. And I haven’t related more to anything in a long time. [except maybe Lysa Terkeurst’s The Uninvited].

Last year was a demanding year to say the least. Some of it was fantastic; however, most of the year was some of the darkest times I’ve ever had. A multitude of things challenged my marriage. There was a devastating cancer diagnosis in the family. My dad was diagnosed with Huntington’s Disease. And that same disease also ripples down to my brother and me.

2018 was full of tears. Tears streaming down my face in the shower. Laying on my bathroom floor crying in confusion. Screaming snotty tears in my bedroom rug. Looking up at the Christmas tree lights crying is desperation. Drunken tears. Silent tears. Terrified tears. Lonely tears. Maybe one irrational tear. Or the very worst- tears of rejection.

I told my therapist in December, I couldn’t remember a time in my life that I’ve ever felt so lonely. I was surrounded by my Christmas candles, married to the love of my life, in the house of my dreams decorated in Christmas magic. Yet, I sat in my floor and wept. I’m a floor cryer, if you hadn’t noticed by now. And then I cried that I was feeling that way.

Since 2014, I’ve been putting in the work. I’ve been fighting, clawing my way to get to this place. I’d been healing. Especially the last five months with my new therapist. But something happened, and in just a few days, I felt like I was relapsing and back to square one. I couldn’t see the progress I was making anymore. My little head was consumed once again with all of my demons. I felt stuck. I felt rejected. I felt inadequate. I felt hopeless.

Through all of the haze and heaviness I felt in my heart, I had an epiphany on New Years Eve. It’s a big date, so I guess appropriate to have a genuine eye opening moment. RJ and I went to an early dinner at my favorite restaurant. We came home and danced to our first dance song and read our vows to each other in candle light. Then we snuggled up on the couch holding our sweet pup. The boys were both passed out and softly snoring by 10:30. I tried waking RJ to move to bed and he simply replied, “This is so nice and peaceful. Let’s sit here a while longer.” Before I knew it I had tears streaming down my face. I thought it was because I was disappointed at the way our New Year’s Eve had turned out. I was bummed we had two trips planned and both fell through. I was annoyed that I planned to do sweet, romantic anniversary things that we weren’t doing. I was bummed the expensive champagne I bought wouldn’t be toasted at midnight. But I was wrong. I was crying happy tears. Peaceful tears.

I was crying because I was so overwhelmed with joy in that moment that I was alive. That I didn’t die on NYE2014. I was cuddled up to my sweet husband and perfect boy, and I was more content in that moment that I’ve ever been. I hadn’t relapsed. I realized I’m finally, finally truly healing. I’m becoming the person I’ve always wanted to be. I’m transforming. I’m changing. I’m hurting so badly because I’m digging into the root of the pain and rejection to free myself. And for the first time, I’m embracing the pain.

We must feel the pain the heal the pain. Remember: the pain isn’t the enemy. Pain is the indicator that brokenness exists. Pain is a reminder that the real enemy is trying to take us out and bring us down by keeping us stuck in broken places. Pain the the gift that motivates us to fight with brave tenacity and fierce determination knowing there’s healing on the other side.

The new year may not have started how I envisioned it in my head. But that’s okay. Because even if I’m the only one seeing my transformation (and my therapist), I’m still growing. I’m healing. I’m letting the past refine me, not define me. Im finally allowing myself a future.

PS- seriously, read Tijan. I recommend the Fallen Crest Series and Ryan’s Bed. And Lysa Terkeurst’s The Uninvited.




3:23 AM and I am wide awake. I typically read when I can’t sleep, but my nook is dead. So here we are. Insomnia is a funny thing sometimes. I am so exhausted but my mind just won’t stop. It’s been a while since my thoughts has been this loud. I suppose because I am so passionate about what today is, actually what this week is.

Today is National Suicide Prevention Day. According to the National Center for Health Statistics, the overall suicide rate in America is at a 30 year high. This means more than 800,000 people die by suicide around the world every single year. On top of this number, the CDC claims there are many more suicide attempts that go untreated or unreported. The CDC also says that at least one million people in the United States engage in intentionally inflicted self-harm.

These numbers are staggering and heart breaking. Many of these statistics could have been prevented. But because of the ignorant stigma surrounding mental illness, many people in desperate need of help do not seek it. There is clear scientific evidence that is incontestable that a physical connection exists with most mental disorders, many people still stigmatize others because they stupidly hold on to the misguided beliefs that people with mental health disorders are weak, crazy, or lack will power. Many people who need help do not get it because of this stigma. (Have I mentioned I loathe stigmas?) So they live their lives with untreated illnesses, like depression, anxiety, PTSD. And this unfortunately can lead to suicide.

There are so many things can be done to help eliminate this deadly epidemic in the world. First and foremost, if you need help, seek it now! It doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks, the only things that matters is you get help. Second, if you have never struggled with a mental illness, I’d like to ask you where do you stand? Are you encouraging the stigma or are you helping eliminate it? Be part of the solution, not the problem.

Suicide, depression, anxiety, and all other mental illnesses need to be things we talk about. The truth is, everyone alive experiences pain in their own way. Everyone struggles. We are all human. We need to all stand together to face the hard stuff.

The past two years have been a combination of the worst and best times of my life. At my lowest, I was on the verge of giving up, actually I wasn’t on the verge. I stepped straight into oncoming traffic. I was reckless, I didn’t want to die, but I didn’t want to live either. I was at a dangerous crossroad that ultimately landed me in a psychiatric inpatient facility. But through all of that, I was given another chance. My struggles never got easier, but I slowly became stronger. “And so I kept living.” (Que Matt Haig’s book Reasons to Stay Alive)

I kept living even though every day I struggled with anxiety, depression and feeling lonelier than I’ve ever felt before. I felt ashamed of my story and how I felt. This week is important to me because not only does it raise awareness for suicide prevention but it also helps raise awareness for mental illness. Because of organizations like TWLOHA and support from my true friends (and countless therapy sessions) I started embracing my story and not believing the stigma of suffering from a mental disorder.

The author of the book Reasons to Stay Alive wrote, “I think the statement is just a declaration that life is not always going to be the same, that when we feel we are in the bad place we have to ride if out, because there will be many better times, many better versions of us, which we can reach simply by holding-no KNEW- everything would get worse. It didn’t. Depression lies. And I found beauty in life after I thought it had been made extinct.”

My point in all of this is simply, I struggled. I let the bad situations and sadness pull me into the darkness. It was a really long time before I was able to escape that life. I let the pain of my sadness and loneliness convince me that I wasn’t worthy. That I was alone. That I would never be enough. So I want to tell you, that I know you are facing a bad situation right now. I know you are struggling a little. (Or maybe you aren’t, maybe you can just help raise hope.) But hear me when I say- I’ve been there. And I made it out the other side.

You can make it through. No matter what you have going on. There is light at the end of the tunnel. Just keep crawling and scratching and fighting until you make it to the other side. You are never alone, just ask for help. Reach out to others, or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. One of the key symptoms of depression is to see no hope. No future. But that is a LIE. There is hope, there is a future. Please just give yourself the chance to believe it.