Drawing Strength From the Little Heartbeats

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“Mommy? You know…Tia is the strongest girl.”

“Tia” is the Spanish word for Aunt.

This charming little quote belongs to my 4 yr old nephew. My sister sent it to me this morning; additionally she wanted to clarify that my nephew did not pose this as a question rather it was a statement.

This literally melted my heart. My nephews never cease to amaze me with their thoughtful little words. It’s incredible how much they pay attention.

(We attended a Sweet 16 for my cousin this past weekend, again my 4 year old nephew with great concern asked me “Tia why are you not in the princess dress?? You need to be in a princess dress!”… I told him that one day I would be in a white princess dress; that made him very happy)

I have no children of my own, would I love some? YES! But alas, I have no ring on my finger … let alone a man in my life.

Gratefully, I have 7 nephews ranging from 5 years – 3 months. It’s fair to say I get my baby fix. And honestly, as much as I want my own children I know for a fact I’m not ready. I’m not confident enough in my health, by all means I’m pleased with my progress… but having literally just experienced almost 6 weeks of me barely functioning… I don’t think it would be in the best interest for myself or a child if I’m a mom – just yet.

Having a little life growing inside of you is an incredible honor and responsibility.  I want to make sure it’s a happy experience for the both of us. I want to be in more control; it’s funny to think that I even asked myself if being in more control was even possible (this clearly was when I felt invincible… Umm YES!!! IT’S VERY POSSIBLE!

Maybe it’s a wives tale BUT I firmly believe that little darling babies in the womb can feel a mother’s emotions whether they be for better or worse. So I would like to have a firm grip on my emotions.

Frankly, the idea of having babies worries me … I’ve read so many negative articles about women with Bipolar having children or going thru a  pregnancy that was deemed a nightmare… I’d like to think the women who experienced amazing pregnancies were just too busy to post anything … haha yes… we will go with that thought…

Anyways, I’m worried BUT at the same time that worry motivates me. It motivates me to get into the best health possible for myself and my future family. I want to know that when the time comes I will have a healthy pregnancy AND will be prepared to be a healthy mother afterwards.

It won’t be perfect. But nothing in this life is BUT it will be planned and prepared and that brings me comfort. (Yes… I am that girl who reads baby articles, advice about raising children and multiple pinterest boards pertaining to my future babies and kids)

This post kind of went all over the place. But I figured I’d try to record some of my swirling thoughts… it’s been awhile.

One day I will make sure that I am a bipolar mother, or mother-to-be who writes positive and encouraging articles. Happiness is not for a select few, it’s for everyone.

– Steph

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Seize the Day!

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This quote is blunt, but that’s why I like it. Sometimes bluntness is exactly what we need, whether it be for ourselves or dare I say… directed at others! (Oh yeaahh…I said it)

There are times when I admit the day runs me and when it does, I feel exhausted mentally & physically entrapped in a feeling of defeat. On these days I generally feel like I’m behind on everything and there is no way on earth I’ll ever manage to regain control of my life!! It’s over!! I’m doomed! There’s no hope!! Goodness gracious… how utterly depressing to think like that. BUT at times I do think like that, it’s a reality of my life. (It’s also called distorted thinking)

On days that mirror the above description my secret anitodte for survival is…. breathing. Who knew right??¬† I breathe and if I’m exceptionally lucky sometimes I manage to successfully remind myself that there is hope, and that day by day I’ll live my life to the best of my ability on that day. It is my life; Stephanie’s. It’s not my Bipolar’s life, or my anxiety’s life or my ocd’s life. It’s mine. So on the days that feel like they are running the show instead if vice versa… I try to remeber they are my days. (Sometimes that’s all the comfort I need)

Attitude plays a huge role in what we accomplish and how we accomplish it. Yes, we may finish a grandeur task but if we do it begrudgingly we will most likely take nothing away from it, aside from a check mark on our To Do List.

By all means checkmarks are great BUT that little check mark doesn’t necessarily signify that we’ve taken charge of our life. Of our day.

We have bad days and for some of us those bad days literally last days or weeks… it’s part of the package deal we took ownership of in this life (regardless to the fact we didn’t ask for it). But eventually¬† (it may seem like forever) those days pass and we will have good days in their stead. On those days we need to take back our full ability to choose. Choose to run the day. Don’t let it run you. PLEASE, PLEASE do not let the day run you when you have the complete choice and ability at hand.

This isn’t suggesting that on our off days we roll over and die until the off days cease. No, we fight. We are fighters and we do our best to run the off day just as we would any other day. BUT we recognize that if by chance this day or days are getting the best of us we are not failures, we merely need to recuperate so that we can get up and fight again for our days to literally be our days to the best and fullest every other day.

Life is a challange, Life is also an opportunity to grow because of the very nature of its challange. Cease the day, to the best of your ability. Rise to recognize all that you have to offer and all that you have to gain.

– Steph

The Sky Above Us

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Over the past two weeks I’ve had my fair share of tears. And when I say my fair share…. I literally mean everyday, multiple times a day… sometimes for hours.

How have I mananged to retain water within my body? I have absolutely no idea. I feel like if I were a well I’d be dried up. Gratefully, we can rest assured that I am not a well.

On a more serious note, my functionality over the past week went out the window…up in flames… down the drain, im sure you get the idea. I slept the majority of this week (in between all of my crying) and I haven’t attended school for the past two days.

Honestly, it was all too much this time. It was too much to handle and I was not coping. I was losing my ability to keep a grip, so inorder to protect myself and diffuse the anxst that was building up (my panic attack mode was on)… I stayed home, I took a step back and I allowed myself to go through whatever pain I was feeling and had been trying to cover up over the past few weeks while being surrounded by people all the time.

Their was no pressure to keep a smile on my face, which appeased the anxiety that was mercilessly eating me up! All the thoughts in my head that told me my peers were judging me because I wasn’t on my “A-game” began to subside.  I was no longer exposed! If there is one thing that I can’t handle, it’s when people start to looking at me like I’ve blown a fuse and I’m not functioning “properly” like I “normally” do.

Maybe it’s all in my head and they don’t notice when I start to lose the life in my eyes… regardless, when it’s running rampant in my head that’s when I become the most lethal. So that’s why I needed to take a step back and diffuse the situation before I completely shut down.

I haven’t taken an unofficial  leave of absence for quite sometime, with that being said I’m not about to beat myself up over the fact that I required a “break” this time around.

Life happens and at times emotions get the best of me. However, the lows come and the lows go, even if they may appear bleak and hopeless. There is hope.

Today I can breathe again, I’ve reached the light at the end of this particular dark tunnel. It wasn’t  easy, in fact it sucked. That’s the truth. BUT life goes on, and I’m grateful I  have the ability to bounce back. I can pick up where I left off… I may have to back track a bit BUT I ultimately am still moving forward.

I still have a lot of work to do in pertaining to handling my life’s journey with bipolar  … but I am stronger than I realize. Just like I can confidently say you are too. Strength doesn’t develop when everything goes along perfectly, strength comes when we have to pick ourselves up after we’ve been knocked down over and over. Strength is fighting our personal battles; trying to remind ourselves of our infinite worth.

Our value never diminishes it only grows.

Happy Friday everyone, I hope you have a wonderful day and enjoy the rays of sunshine on your skin… the little things that remind us we are alive.

– Steph