depression

Take Care Of Yourself - Day 8 #31DaysOfBlogging

Today we wanted to share with you a little about a place where we each spent a week during our walkabout this year.

The place is called Onsite Workshops and it’s a therapeutic retreat center in Tennessee. We each learned so much, but Kate wrote a blog earlier this year sharing extensively about some of the things she learned. It is below, in case you missed it.

We have been learning the importance of mental health and that it is something we need to pay attention to and be gentle with. Onsite Workshops is a place where we were really able to do this. We even did a podcast interview with the CEO of Onsite, Miles Adcox, if you want to learn even more.

Here is Kate’s blog, below. Take care of yourself today. You are important.


I’m not sure where you were when you got the news that Kate Spade had ended her life.

For me, that news will be forever etched in my mind. I will always remember the patch of grass where I was standing, the feeling of the sun hitting my face as it was setting. The lump in my throat as I tried to swallow when I heard it was suicide. My stomach physically ached.  And not because I was a Kate Spade super-fan, but because I heard the news moments after receiving my phone back on June 7th after being away from all technology for a week. Let me back up.

Onsite.

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On June 1st, I drove myself about an hour outside of Nashville, Tennessee, to a place called Cumberland Furnace, TN to the Onsite Workshops. Onsite is a therapeutic retreat center and they have a week-long program called “The Living Centered Program,” or LCP. I’ve had a ton of friends who have gone through the program, who all had incredible experiences, but I never thought I would actually do it.

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See, I always thought of Onsite as a rehab type of place — like, you only go there for serious problems. But, after talking with my friend Miles who is the CEO at Onsite, and another friend Jess that works there, I had a better understanding that the program was really for anyone who wanted to take the next step. Anyone who wanted to become more emotionally healthy. A safe space to work on yourself and on your stuff. And that looks like all different things for different people. It’s really just a place for you to get emotionally fit.

So, with a little help and encouragement from my friends I said YES and signed up for the June 1st LCP. Honestly, part of me almost let fear win. Like, I almost didn’t say yes. I didn’t like the fact that I would be without a cell phone/computer and all the comforts of the outside world for a week — hello SEPARATION anxiety from my life. It was a real thing.  And another real fear was that the last 8 months I’ve really felt in an emotionally healthy place…or at least A LOT better than other times in my life…so I was a little worried that a week of intense group therapy was going to leave me in a worse place than before. But, I was able to talk that out with some of the Onsite staff, and they helped calm my fears and reassure me that it was a guided process — I wasn’t going to be alone with these fears.

So, June 1st came, and at around 7pm that evening, I handed over my cell phone. Guys, it was weird. I was excited to be free from it for a week, but I also immediately felt SO ALONE. I had none of my people with me. I couldn’t text Jill if I was having a melt-down. I couldn’t send a GIF to my girls if I needed a laugh. I couldn’t call my mom. I couldn’t insta-story and chat with all my insta-people. Solo. Me. Well, me surrounded by 56 strangers. Yikes.

I’m not going to share the details of all that we did, but it was a combination of mornings spent with the big group — learning more about the science behind why we do what we do…sort of like emotional fitness classes, and then the late mornings and afternoons were spent in your small group of about 8 or 9 other individuals, and that’s when the more focused work would happen…in group therapy.

I am not even going to lie — I thought the idea of group therapy was terrible. I mean, I knew that was the thing that LCP did, but I’ve never done group therapy and I was certain I would hate it. But, OMG, it was magic. These 9 people started out as strangers, and I can tell you right now, there’s not one of them I wouldn’t fly across the country for in one hot second right now. These strangers became like family. Six days. What in the world?

I’m not even sure how to fully summarize what changes I feel in myself, but it feels significant. And full disclosure, I definitely had some personal a-ha moments that I want to keep for myself or family/close friends, but I do really want to share some of my takeaways with you in hopes that they might be useful to you. They might be jumbled or random but here’s the bottom line.

I loved it. I feel like I learned tools that will help me navigate the rest of my life. I feel like I experienced real healing in some wounds that I was carrying since childhood. I would highly recommend the program to anyone who has blood running through their veins. I think anyone and everyone could benefit. Literally there were people there from ages 19 to mid-70s. Anyone can do this.

Group Therapy.

So, you’re in a small group, where everyone has signed a confidentiality agreement and you have a therapist who is the guide for your group and you get to know these people. Like, KNOW them. As you share your story and as they share theirs, something begins to shift inside of you. You cannot look someone in the eyes when they’re talking about their pain and not be changed. My therapist group leader told me that 70% of your healing comes from just being in the room — the 30% is when you’re talking about your own stuff, but that might not even be as impactful. And I realized something…that might be the key. I think that’s what we’re all looking for in life. Someone to bear witness to our pain. We don’t need someone to fix it. Or say it’s going to be fine. Or pity us. We just need someone to see it. Someone to bear witness to our pain. Especially if the pain happened a long time ago, to go back, to uncover those painful moments and have a room full of people witness it. There is healing in that.

I am a fixer by nature. I want to rescue and fix and make a plan for change to get out of pain. Yet, that was not my role —in group therapy or in life — my role is to say, I see you in that pain. Maybe that’s it. Just, I see it. I am a witness to your pain…and I’m sorry. You take 57 strangers, and you realize that every single person there is carrying pain of some sort. Wounds. Hurt. Heartache. Some of them are scars that run deep. Some are fresh and still oozing with infection. But pain is pain. I left there and I swear I was seeing people differently. The cashier at Kroger. The guy flipping burgers at Five Guys. Every single human alive has a story and most likely has pain. It makes me want to listen more. I don’t need to fix or rescue. I need to listen and see people. I need to bear witness to their pain. It’s powerful.

It was intense.

They say the week there is equivalent to 8 months of weekly therapy. So, it’s no walk in the park. At times, it was uncomfortable…pushing me out of my comfort zone and into feelings that I haven’t felt in a while. Was it a breeze? No. Was it worth it? Yes. Because here’s the thing: I’m pretty certain that great things come after a bit of friction. Sometimes sitting in the group room, I felt uncomfortable and it felt hard. I think of it now like fire or friction. No one likes fire, but that’s how you get the refined beauty. No one likes the friction on the rock until the diamond appears. And I don’t mean it to be a cheesy analogy, but I mean it. It reminded me that most things in life that are worth it take work, and sometimes that work is uncomfortable in the process.


You aren’t allowed to talk about what you do for work. That is a true story. You arrive and you are given a name tag. Kate R. — that was all of me. You guys, I’ve been a part of the duo Jill and Kate for 15 freaking years. Do you know how awesome it was for people to get to know me? Me. Not “Kate” from Jill and Kate...or Kate the back-up singer for Kelly Clarkson. Me! Just me! This part was so helpful.  Literally, there are people that don’t know the difference between Jill and I, and honestly they don’t care to. When showing up at an event on my own people will ask me: “So, how are you guys?” Ummm…it’s just me here.

I felt seen.

This kind of piggy backs on my last point — but during my week at Onsite, I felt seen. I sort of think you can’t escape that. Seen, known, and loved. I think someone summarized those things that might be our three most basic desires and longings. I wasn’t known for accomplishments or seen because of what I did for work. I was seen as a human being not a human doing.

Also, I realized that so much of my life is work. And I love it — I love all that I get to do, but when people aren’t allowed to talk about work — you talk about who you are. Sometimes around the meal tables there would be awkward lulls in conversation because the natural flow of conversation NORM is to talk about work. Instead, I found myself asking the question “Do you have any hobbies? What do you do for fun?” A lot. It was awesome because you actually get to know people for who they are, not what they do. Yes, yes, yes. I’m trying to do this more. My way of asking people questions is now, “So what keeps you busy when you’re not {at the event or driving for Uber}?”

Another huge takeaway for me was that my job is to look after myself. Not in a “Only lookout for #1” way or a selfish manner at all, but that my role in life is taking care of and nurturing myself. I cannot control anyone else or any other situation, but I can take care of myself. A lot of my nature is to caretake — which my therapist also pointed out the difference between care-taking and caregiving. That care-taking is way more about you than it is the other person. Ummm…say what? Thanks Jim for the mic drop moment. Taking vs. giving. Dang, that was a lightbulb moment for me. But I realized that self-care is something that I need to focus on.

Meditation and the brain.

So here’s the deal. I have always heard meditating is good for you. I sort of thought it was more in the New Age vein, but heck, even the Bible talks about meditating…but I’ve never really done it, because I thought that it was something to do for fun or for spiritual reasons. During one of the morning sessions, they do a whole lecture about meditating and show you scientific scans of brains and meditation. I will not attempt to regurgitate medical information here, but let’s just say I now try to meditate every single morning. It’s like flossing but for your brain. Do it, do it, do it. I downloaded a few free apps that have guided mediations: Calm, Headspace and Simple Habit. So far, I like Calm the best.

I am so incredibly grateful for my time at Onsite. To the people that read this that spent the week with me — you know who you are, and I am so grateful to have you with me on my journey from here on out. To the ones who got me to Onsite — Jess, Miles and all the other friends I texted for advice — thank you! I am a different person because of you.

And to you, reader, who might be feeling scared or stuck or in need of the next step…reach out for help. If it’s a friend or a therapist or counselor or a week at Onsite — don’t underestimate the healing power of sharing your pain with others — that’s what we all need — we need a witness to the pain.

And so, I think that’s why the news of Kate Spade hit me so hard.

She was seen and known by billions of people. Had success. Money. Fame. But did she feel truly seen? Truly known? Truly loved. Did she need someone to bear witness to her pain? I don’t know and I never will. But hearing the news of her death was the punctuation mark to my week at Onsite that made it forever memorable.

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My hope for you, dear reader, is that you feel seen, known and loved.

Much love,

Kate







Erica's Story

Today we are doing something a little different on the blog. We have a guest post from Erica. We met Erica at a show this fall...she has been listening to us for a few years and we hadn't gotten a chance to meet IRL until last year. Erica told us about how one of our songs (Chasing Storms) in particular had really helped her through a difficult time in life and we asked her if she'd be up for sharing her story on our blog with all of you guys. She said yes, so her story is below!

See, we get to hear your stories...when you email us, send us letters, or tell us in person, but we have this feeling that we ALL need to be hearing each other's stories. So many of you guys have OVERCOME, pushed through, risen after falling, achieved HARD goals and we are always so inspired by your stories. 

We've noticed that a lot of people we talk to and meet through our music have struggled with or do struggle with anxiety and depression. We've also shared with you guys how we each have struggled with those things too. Some of you might even have found us because of some of our songs that deal with those issues: (Life & Breath & Everything, My Love, Breakdown, Finding My Own Way....to name a few.)

There is no shame in having struggles with these things...and we believe they can not only get BETTER, but that by sharing our stories with each other, we can all make it through together.

So here is Erica's story...thank you, Erica, for sharing this with us and with everyone. We're all in this together!  

(Ps: If you want to share your story on our blog, you can send it to us at jillandkate@gmail.com)

 

ERICA'S STORY

I grew up in a small town in Wisconsin.  Same town my parents grew up in and same town I live in now.  It’s one of those places everybody knows everybody’s business.
I’ll give you a little background of myself.  I was 12 years old when I was first diagnosed with A.D.D (Attention Deficit Disorder.) I was put on medicine almost immediately.   School was very difficult for me.  Keeping friendships was very difficult for me and life in general was very difficult for me.  I grew up in the shadow of my older brother.  He was 2 years older, smarter, taller and skinnier  than me.  It wasn’t until I was older that I learned to appreciate the smarter and taller genes he got!

Let’s skip ahead a few years.
September 2014 -- I decided that the medication I was on for my A.D.D. wasn’t working the best and I wanted a change.  I went and saw my doctor and she decided on a prescription that she thought would work best for me.  She said to try it for about a month and then let her know.
Month 1: Though I was still working full time, when I came home, I slept.  I was working full-time from 7am-3pm. I’d come home and sleep from 4pm until about 6 the next morning. 
The only thing that I knew would never ‘leave’ me…was music. 
Things in my head weren’t right.  I started to become sad.  My anxiety levels were at an all-time high.  My cry switch was on all the time. I started ‘abusing myself’ you could say.  I have numerous scars on my knuckles, large and small.  Cement walls were my favorite thing to punch. 
One time, I decided to take on a stop sign.  I had to superglue my knuckles shut on that one.  In my head, all I could think was that if I went into the ER, no one would believe me. 
The next morning, I called my doctor and left a message. ….something wasn’t right. But no one called me back.
Month 2:  I felt that punching things wasn’t enough pain inflicted on myself anymore.  Still no call back from the doctor.  At this point my friends and family knew something was wrong, but I had a few friends that wouldn’t leave me alone.  As good as it should have felt to know someone cared, honestly, it sucked.  This led to suicide attempts 1 and 2.  Details won’t ever be necessary.  All I know is that because of 2 people and 1 song…my life was saved.
My best friend then took it upon herself and called my doctor.  She gave her a good earful and my doctor responded to her/me by upping my medication dosage. At this point I was willing to try anything.
Months 3 and 4 blended together.  I started calling into work. I  stopped showing up.  By this point, my boss knew something was up. She pulled me into her office and tried to help.  She let me know she was there, that my job was there.  Suicide attempt 3 occurred.  I stopped doing some of my all-time favorite things and instead stayed at home and did nothing. Absolutely nothing.  I was 26, still living with my parents, absolutely hating life. 
And then, one night, literally out of nowhere, something in me became aware of everything the last 4 months had done to me.  That night, a friend showed up at my house and wanted to go to our favorite spot.  At this point I had nothing to lose, so we went.   We talked for hours about everything.  She sat there and listened and honestly it felt amazing.  One thing I remember her asking after hearing my story that was “What did you used to do that made you happy?  What made you believe anything was possible?”  One thing came instantly to mind: Music.
I called my doctor once again the next morning. I  told her I would no longer be taking the medication and that I wanted to see her physician’s assistant.  The P.A. called me back within 20 minutes of calling  and she had me come in within an hour.  She got everything straightened out that day, but now I was so far into my depression, that I needed help to get out.
I’ve always loved music, but being depressed made me appreciate music that much more. I used to just listen to the sound of the music, but I realized the words are the most important part.  That’s the part that tells the story.  That’s the part that draws you to the artist.  Whoever said there is a song for everything you go through, they weren’t lying. 
It took me about 5 months to get semi- back- to- normal.  In those 5 months I listened to music day in and day out. It was the only thing that made me happy; Inside and out.
The song Chasing Storms hit so close to home that I knew I could do this.  That there was a reason for that exact storm. That I could make my life…….Possible.
‘Cause you’re tired from chasing the wind. 
It was all at your fingertips but you can’t feel it anymore.
When everything is not enough
You’re so afraid to fight for it.
 

Put Yourself On The List

Hey friends…

It’s winter where I am. This means gray skies, some snow, cold temps and if I’m being honest it’s sometimes a real fight to stay out of the depressed zone during these months. I am slowly still coming off my post Christmas holidaze...what, you mean it’s not normal to have dessert for breakfast and start drinking festive cocktails at 3pm? Ah yes, back to reality.

I kind of let myself go in the winter.

Like, what’s the real importance of shaving your legs in the winter anyway? Or why do I need to get off the couch and go for a walk outside? It’s cold out there people. I sort of hibernate. But, that never makes me happy. So I am trying to not have January suck this year.

I had this thought the last few days. We blogged about it towards the end of December and the thought is this: TAKE IT BACK. Whatever you’ve let go--take it back.

For me, January in Nashville is gray and I sometimes get into a funk. I have prayed and worked really hard at taking my January back. Not letting the gloom get to me and as an added bonus it’s actually been pretty sunny this January. Woop woop.

Oprah said it best, “Sometimes you need to put yourself on the list.” Do something for you. Take yourself back. Yesterday I got my eyebrows waxed. This might sound silly, but it was something that I wanted to do that would make me feel better about myself. I know it can be a frivolous expense but I was doing something for me. I was putting myself on the list.

Maybe you need to put yourself on the list and take something back? Maybe it’s your joy. Maybe it’s your sense of adventure. Heck, maybe it’s just soaking in a tub and shaving your legs. Whatever it is, I encourage you to take it back. You can’t control everything in life, but you can control yourself and your mindset.

Put on your power pants and say to yourself: I GOT THIS. I AM TAKING IT BACK. Now go and put yourself at the top of the list.

Much love,

Kate

 

 

It’s Okay, To Be Not Okay, Even on Christmas. (#31DaysofBlogging)

This blog is a part of a series #31DaysofBlogging … we are going through the year (2015) chronologically.

Merry Christmas Eve!

We are both at home with our families...Kate is in Colorado and Jill is in New Hampshire. We’re having a great time but wanted to take time out to say a few things:

  • Merry Christmas to you and yours. Hope that this season is filled with joy that lasts longer than a day and that you are surrounded by love and light.

 

  • We are incredibly thankful for you. See, you’ve been giving us gifts all year. Listening to our albums, sending us tweets, commenting on our Facebook messages, coming to shows, supporting Houses of Hope Africa, sending us REAL post office mail, etc. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Thanks for teaching us about kindness and bravery. Thank you for listening to our words, whether in song or on our blog....thank you. You remind us daily that we’re all in this together.

 

  • We also know that the holidays can be a realllllly hard time for people. It has been for us at times. We don’t say that lightly. We know it. If you want proof, I (Kate) wrote the majority of our song “Don’t Feel A Thing” on Christmas Eve while balling my eyes out locked in my brother’s bathroom. True story. The only holiday cheer I was bringing was bright red, puffy eyes. Chew on those lyrics for a minute and you’ll quickly see that I was not okay. Whatever the reason that makes the season or this particular day difficult...we’re sorry and we send you our warmest hugs and love. It’s okay to not be okay...even on holidays. It’s okay to say no and to honor what is best for you. It’s okay to cry, even on Christmas. This time of year can sometimes bring up the deep, dark stuff we try and push down the rest of the year. If you’re feeling down, look for someone to talk to. A trusted friend, family member or therapist. We’re so happy that the negative stigma of seeking help has pretty much gone out the window. Everyone, and we mean EVERYONE can use someone to talk to. If you’re really in a funk--try helping someone. Help an elderly person at the grocery store. Volunteer at a local soup kitchen. Hand out food to homeless people. Call a friend and offer to babysit for free. Make cookies for your neighbor. Clean the house for your mom. Play with puppies at an animal shelter. Anything helpful. Seriously, it changes something. Also, remind yourself of the truths you know to be true. You are loved. Your life matters. You have a purpose. Hold your hand up to your chest...feel that thing beating? That means that you still have a purpose. You are a world changer. You can do anything. You are special and one of a kind. You are beautiful and worthy of love. And if you’re in a funk...you’ll get out of it sometime soon. Unfortunately sometimes the only way out is through...which is hard, but keep going. You’ll get to the other side.

 

  • The Christmas story is all about the birth of Jesus. Jesus is called Emmanuel which means GOD WITH US. Don’t you just love that? God is about combatting loneliness...that’s why he sent us Jesus. God with us. We truly are never alone. Thanking God for that amazing gift.

 

Okay, those are our Christmas Eve thoughts for you. Te recap: Merry Christmas, thank you for your gifts to us, it’s okay to not be okay on Christmas, thank you Jesus for being born.

 

Love you all so much. You really have no idea. We talk about y’all all the time.

 

Sleep tight.

 

xo

j&k

It's Christmas! (31 Days-Day #25)

Who can believe that Christmas Day has arrived? Wow. The year has flown by. They say the older you get, the faster the time goes….yikes…we think they might be right.

We wanted to wish each of YOU (yes, you) the most wonderful, joy-filled Christmas! We hope that you are surrounded by loving friends and family and that you can take a moment to relax and breathe.

And, we know that sometimes holidays can be hard. You might want to throw a chair though a window if you hear "it's the most wonderful time of year" again. If that's you this Christmas…that's okay. If you are having a hard time…that's okay. You can be honest. You can be quiet. I (kate) would be lying if I said there weren't Christmases that I didn't cry my way through. One Christmas I was going through a breakup and literally sat and stared out the window, past the Christmas tree full of lights and wanted to bury my head in a pile of blankets. I cried and I cried. That's actually when I started the song "Don't Feel A Thing" that ended up on our Songs On The 17th Vol. 1 album. I think back then I tried keeping it all inside…not sure why, I just didn't want my problems to bum other people out. But, I think I've learned now being honest with pain is the best way to bring healing…and not only to yourself but to everyone. Now when I'm feeling something I really try to say it out loud and be honest. Because, I think that's ok.

Not meaning to be debbie downer. We hope and pray that this Christmas season you are joyous and life is AWESOME. But, if you're not…we want you to know that YOU ARE NOT ALONE. We've said it once, we'll say it a thousand times…we are all in this together. Maybe we could all reach out today to someone? Send someone a text or blow their minds and CALL them. Write an email. Think of someone that might not have many people around them celebrating today. Tell someone that's having a hard time not to get over it but that you are getting in it with them. We think that would be an epic way to spread holiday cheer.

God gave us Jesus…Emmanual…"God With Us"…so that we wouldn't be alone.

We are SO thankful for each of you. Honestly, you don't know how much you mean to us.

Love, love, love.

Jill and Kate

PS. Merry Christmas to you. 3 free songs can be downloaded at: https://soundcloud.com/jill-and-kate

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.

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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…

xo

-kate