A Day Late. (31 Days-Day #16)

Hi friends... So, we didn't post a blog yesterday. Sorry. But we're making up for it now. See, we didn't blog yesterday because we were too busy celebrating MY (kate's) BIRTHDAY. A-woo-hoo. And by busy we were pretty much just doing some of my favorite things: eating, shopping, eating, writing a song, eating, talking with friends, cocktails, cocktails, cocktails…you get the idea.

But, throughout the day I had this magical thing happen. All sorts of birthday tweets, FB comments and Instagram comments came flooding in. Each time I checked my phone I had a new birthday wish or a text from a friend…and you guys...I AM JUST SO GRATEFUL. Honestly, I am so honored to have you following along with us on this crazy journey and I just felt so loved yesterday. Thank you.


Here are some random thoughts on turning another year older…and hopefully wiser:

{this is not meant to be preachy…it's just stuff I've been learning…and sharing is caring, right?}

Showing up means more than anything. I heard someone say once  that if someone is trudging through rain, you can't just send them an umbrella. That won't shield them from anything…it will just be a closed umbrella next to that person. They will still get rained on. If you want to shield them from the rain, you have to stand with them and hold the umbrella for them--that's how you will help shield the rain. By holding the umbrella. By showing up. And this is the thing…showing up takes effort and work and TIME.  Your most valuable commodity…that's what it takes. Anyone can throw some cash around but not everyone is willing to sacrifice time and effort. But man, when you show up…it's worth it.

Drinking more water really will help you feel better. I know, I'm a genius for telling you that. But it's true. Hydration.

Depression doesn't last forever. I've gone through some depression this year and honestly, it's the worst. If you are dealing with depression right now, I'm sorry. I know how much it sucks. I know how it feels like you will never get out of it. I wish I could reach through this computer screen and grab your shoulders and tell you that it's going to be okay. It really is. It will be okay. Find someone you can talk to…cause really, the only way out is through. I sought counseling and friends that I could just talk, and talk, and talk with. I cried so often I started seeing small victories when I didn't cry for a whole day. It was dark. But, I guess that's why I'm typing this…it gets better. I don't think you wake up one day and it's magically gone (if that happens for you--that is awesome…more power to you) but for me, it's a slow path. I sometimes feel like depression is a fog and little by little the fog starts to lift. I've dealt with small doses of depression before, but this time felt especially hard. So, again, if you're reading this and you are in a dark place: I get it. Life is not always rainbows, glitter and butterflies. This time of year can be especially hard. You are valuable. Your story matters. You are not wandering this earth by accident. Your life has purpose. You are loved.

Gratitude can change you. During my depression I read a few things and this stuck with me. That gratitude can change your outlook without you really even knowing it. Force yourself to write down 5 things you are thankful for. Even if it's bad things that you are feeling. Acknowledge it. So, I started writing down that I was thankful for my anxiety some days. It's like doing ab exercises that you don't know you're doing…and then all of a sudden down the road you find your core muscles are stronger. IT just slowly changes things. Somedays this was SO HARD. But honestly, it works.

Fear, it's a monster. Oh you guys, this year is the first year in a long time when I have seriously struggled with fear. Like crazy irrational fears of getting hurt or terrible things happening….to fear of the future down the road. Always envisioning the worst case scenario. My friend Bob was speaking once and said something along these lines. In the Bible, what does God say not to do more than anything else? People shouted things like: not to murder, not to steal, and other things from the 10 commandments and Bob said, nope…that's not what God says the most. What God tells us NOT to do more than anything else: do not fear. Do not be afraid. He says it over and over again. It's been hard to navigate but I just think it's so important to re-train your brain to not fear. Anytime I start to fear or worry, I literally try and stop myself and change the mental conversation from fear to something else in my head. Kind of that, "take every thought captive" mentality .

Admit what you like and who you are and OWN IT. Find what you love and be 100% okay with that. Don't be swayed because it's not the cool thing to do or you don't see other people enjoying the same thing. I promise you…if you find what makes you happy…OWN IT.

These are just some things I've been learning…and by no means have I mastered them. These will be life lessons that I will continually be learning and trying...

Thanks again for the birthday love…