Monday, August 11, 2014

Carpe Diem

Today, I cleaned up the latest round of apple/sauce fish capsule mess and decided to find chewable alternatives. They are ordered and on their way! I have come too far with Lily to have a choking, gagging battle over pills.

I am able to let this hiccup roll right off. I think it is due in large part to the fact that we have had the most relaxing summer ever. I have had so much fun with my girls, swimming, late night drives, movies, reading, and general silliness! Tonight was no exception. While we were waiting for the oven to heat up, Lily and I danced and sang all around the kitchen. I was thinking that it is possible to find moments of happiness even when your heart has been broken. It is possible to move forward.

Lily, Caroline, and Rob are my reasons for moving forward and trying to take better care of myself. Right after we spoke to Lily's doctor, I decided to go back on Zoloft. I owe it to Lily to approach this next school year with my best. My best is a well rested and anxiety free mother-teacher. Zoloft and I have a love-hate relationship. When I am on it, I don't have panic attacks over everyday things; I don't wake up in the middle of the night with my head reeling from lists. However, when I am on it, my appetite triples. I eat like I have a tapeworm. This time I also seem to sweat a lot. Neither thing is very attractive. I am hoping that as I feel better, I will have more energy to exercise. Last night I took a long walk. So that's a start.

I am lucky. My anxiety is mild. I am aware of it and know when to take steps to get myself back on track (ok, so this round I let it go on a bit too long). Not everyone has the resources and support that I have. Not all mental illness is the same. It is not something that can be cured or just goes away. In some ways it becomes a way of life.

Tonight after sitting down to a dinner where Lily and I talked about our expectations for the next school year, I opened my computer and read about Robin Williams's passing. I am so heartbroken for his family. Judging by some of the comments I'm seeing, our country still has a long way to go in our understanding of mental illness. It isn't a choice, nor is it the disease du jour that everyone needs to suddenly develop (I'm talking to you teenage girls who think it is okay to run around with ink quotation marks on your wrists because you have thought about committing suicide). We need to be patient and supportive of families who are battling mental illness. We need to be open and honest, so those who are hurting feel comfortable seeking help. We need to start the conversation and keep it going. Rest in Peace Mr. Williams.

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