Climb out of the darkness – OTTAWA

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I am proud to be joining the amazing Katherine Stone from Postpartum Progress on her annual Climb out of the Darkness taking place GLOBALLY on the 21 June 2014.

Now for anyone that knows me, getting off my ass and actually committing to physical activity means this is serious shit!

I feel compelled to help break the stigma and bring awareness to moms who have suffered with or do suffer with PPD (Post Partum Depression).
I am urging and encouraging my international friends to get up and do a walk of their own and I am asking my local friends to walk with me.

I need this.
We need this.

And here’s why
•Because more women will suffer from postpartum depression and related illnesses in a year than the combined number of new cases for men and women of tuberculosis, leukemia, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, lupus, and epilepsy.
•Because only 15% of the million women who get these illnesses in the US alone each year ever get treated.
•Because suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the first year postpartum.
•Because there’s very little funding to raise awareness, and most of the time we’re not even on the women’s health radar screen

REGISTER to walk with me or contribute to a really GREAT cause.

And if its the actual walk / climb that scares you – never fear.
Support us from your couch! You can still register as a couch climber!
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We all don’t have to be a celebrity to make a difference.
I am literally taking the first step to do it!
Lets be the difference together. Mom to Mom.

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No Mother escapes “Those” moments of mommy madness

Not too long ago I witnessed what most of us encounter on a daily basis.
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The mom had the olympic rings tattood on her ankle and was attempting to fold up a stroller and put it into the back of a minivan
(side note – the stroller was winning)
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Her husband was putting a screaming child into the car seat and the older two children were bickering in the back.
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You could see the look of defeat on his face and the look of annoyance on hers.

As I drove away from the woman and her family they began getting more and more impatient with each other, and I smiled. None of us escapes, or are immune to these moments.

It was comforting to watch as even a seemingly successful woman – who at one stage could have had it all and lived the dream – was going through a “normal mommy moment of madness”.
I wonder if this is how she thought it was going to be!

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Parenting my toddler or How I am still sane is beyond me!

Parenting a toddler can be mentally exhausting.
You have to be 20 steps ahead of them, cause those little feet catch up and on pretty darn quickly.

I know it’s a wonderful time for them – learning new things, testing boundaries (aka pushing mommy’s buttons)
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I KNOW you know what I mean!

You approach new ideas, foods, outings and anything out of their comfort zone with false confidence all while sweating more than a thief about to get caught, your heart beating faster than the day you lost your virginity.

Most situations are tackled with the precision and fineness of the bomb squad and other times you are totally up in their face ghetto like:
“AH HELL NO, YOU AIN’T TALKING TO ME LIKE THAT GIRLFRIEND!”

Some days it feels like you are trying to get the cool kid at school to like you with the same fear of being rejected, shot down or laughed at.
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One minute they are flying high on life and yogurt, the next they are throwing it back at you (literally) and melting down because you fed the cat, after you asked them if they wanted to feed the damn cat and they said no, so you fed the cat and it was still the wrong thing. (True story – 6:20am this morning). Lord help me when my days start like that.

Pass me the wine.

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I want to talk about it. #BellLetsTalk

I am very blessed to live in a country where mental illness is allowed to come out of the shadows and be seen for what it is. An Illness.

For anyone that doesn’t know what mental illness looks like,
allow me to show you.
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I bet you never expected it to look like that.

Depression is not a one size fits all, cry in the corner, suicidal person who can’t get out of bed picture.
Depression can be a woman in a grocery store, a man at a desk,
a child playing soccer.
Depression has no race or religion.
Depression doesn’t care how much you earn or where you live.
Depression is not something you ask for.

I suffered from Postpartum Depression and know many wonderful women who have suffered the same fate.
I have friends and family that have been diagnosed with, battled through or are dealing with some form of depression.

Depression can be cured.
There is nothing to be ashamed of.
It should be taken this seriously everywhere and not just in Canada.

Depression deserves the same love, support and understanding as some other well know diseases.

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Today 28 January 2014 is Bell Lets Talk day what that means is that Bell will donate 5¢ more to mental health initiatives for every:
Text message sent*
Mobile and long distance call made*
Tweet using #BellLetsTalk
Facebook share of our Bell Let’s Talk image

http://letstalk.bell.ca/en/

Surviving Each Other

We had a man (little girl) down in our camp.
Fever of 104 F.
Diagnosis of Strep.

Canadian winters can really screw recovery up and we were in almost lock down as the outside temperature dipped to -27 C.
Only escaping once to take her to the doctor, and that was a chore.
Its been 5 very long nights and 4 even longer days.

So you can imagine these long days all cooped up together, our family looking more like a scene from Lord of the flies
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While I was hoping to keep it more Swiss Family Robinson.
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Yeah….. that didn’t happen!
But we got through it.
All alive, some of us feeling more emotionally fragile than others.
For as hard as we try to keep it together sometimes falling apart is only human.

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There is hope during and after PPD

To the mom suffering in the darkness of PPD, wondering if it will ever get better and if the fog will ever lift.

Believe there it will.  Even if it’s for a brief moment – take it.

I know the guilt can be over whelming and there seems as if there is no hope.

But I want you to know it does get better and you will get through it.

One day you will not fake it through the pictures and you will genuinely feel the love and the connection.

Proof is in the picture!

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Sleeping with the enemy?

When did this….
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Become more socially acceptable than this?
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There is a definite line in the sand when it comes to this topic. Bed sharing has been blamed for divorce and the breakup of marriages.
I recently read posts linking bed sharing to ADHD , not to mention all the posts saying how  we are screwing our kids up and that they will be dependant on mama

F-O-R-E-V-E-R!

(Cause really what we really need is more guilt and more people telling us the path we have chosen is wrong.)

And for these reasons comes the new breed of family – the closet bed sharing family. Can you believe we have to actually hide this so we won’t be burnt at the stake for doing what is right for our family?

So if I haven’t done so before I would like to say:

“Hi my name is Dee and I am a co-sleeping, bed sharing parent.”

“It’s been 3 years since I swore I would not be sharing a bed with my child, and here I am enjoying it.”

Bed sharing has not affected my sex life, home life, married life, work life or any kind of life. My kid is, so far, not screwed up because of it.
She is a confident, caring little girl.  But let me not come across as cocky because I  certainly don’t attribute this quality to our sleep arrangements. Sleeping arrangements by themselves cannot produce a particular type of person or personality. Let me repeat it so it sinks in

Sleeping arrangements by themselves cannot produce a particular type of person or personality!

There is no cut and dry to this parenting / motherhood gig.
Haters will hate and you will have differences of opinions on many things, the key is to remain focused on your own values.

Don’t  get caught up in the mom against mom war.
Life is too short to be worried about the way others are doing it.

Sometimes we are over fed with information that ends up clouding our own judgment.

You’re damned if you do and you are damned if you don’t.
So damn them all and do what you damn well want to.

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