thoughts

Re-Direct, Re-Frame, Re-Train

Hi beautiful dreamers!

How many of us have thought and speech patterns that we know aren’t that great? Whether it’s a bad habit of mentally putting yourself down after being clumsy or the way we say “sorry!” after everything, regardless of what’s happening – I think everyone has something that they do without thinking that tears themselves down more than it builds up.
Many people can go through life and be just fine with a few negative thought patterns. It doesn’t affect them. I’m not one of those people. I have several very distinct patterns that can quickly turn into nasty spirals if left unchecked.

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Especially since the pandemic hit, my weekly therapy sessions have become a staple of my routine. I even had a minor panic moment this last week when my therapist said she was going to be on vacation. How would I ever survive?!
Joking aside though, I do rely a lot on the accountability and safety of that hour every week. And a big portion of what I work on outside of those sessions is reframing the negative and harmful patterns that I have, both in my thoughts and my words. She helps me find ways to rephrase things and recognize patterns that I wouldn’t necessarily notice on my own.

It’s a lot of hard work!

The longer a particular pattern has been in place, the longer it takes to work through it. These patterns are, quite simply, memorized brain responses, so the process of re-framing a thought really means re-training your brain. Which equals some hard work because thoughts are sneaky and like to creep through when you’re least expecting them. It’s a daily thing and can require lots of conscious effort for quite a while, depending on how long it has been a habit. Just like any other habit that you might want to create or stop, your brain’s habits are also challenging.

Half the battle!

For me, half the battle sometimes is simply recognizing a pattern that I don’t want to continue. This is where a therapist can come in handy because they are listening to you and hear things much more objectively than you do. Plus they don’t have your history with whatever pattern or thought process it is, so they can point out things that you might not otherwise see for yourself.

Some examples might be…

Following a spiral of worst-case scenarios in your head.
Mumbling “stupid” under your breath whenever you drop something.
Judging yourself mentally every time you catch your reflection in a mirror.
Apologizing for being enthusiastic about something when talking to a friend.
Immediately assuming someone is mad at you because they don’t respond right away.

And so on and so forth. There are a million different examples I could give, but I’m sure the ones I mentioned already struck a chord with a few people. It’s hard to acknowledge these things sometimes, but being able to recognize and point out a negative pattern is the beginning of the road.

In my personal life…

I do rely on my therapist a lot to help me recognize when I’m speaking in a way that isn’t positive or loving to myself. Having that outside voice helps a lot. I have found my own patterns though in the past, usually by flipping through past journal entries that end up making me cringe. Sometimes even by listening to someone else and realizing that they’re not being kind or gracious to themselves has flipped a switch for me, causing me to acknowledge that I do the same thing to myself. Ouch.
As I mentioned, acknowledging the pattern as a problem is half the battle. Once I see what I’m doing wrong, I’ll notice it every time and sometimes that’s enough to stop me in my tracks. Other times, especially when its something that I’ve been internalizing for many many years, its a lot harder. In those situations, I usually have to dig a little deeper inside myself and find the root of that pattern. Maybe its something that I was told as a child that I shouldn’t have clung to, but did anyway. Regardless, if I can find the root of the issue, I can start to work through it and make a stronger effort to change my habits, and my heart as well. It’s challenging, for sure, but so very worth it. There are days that I struggle more than others, but that’s what life is, right?
Is there a thought or speech pattern that you notice in yourself that isn’t kind or loving? What is it that you need to begin that change in yourself?


Love, kindness, and lots of light,
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Posted by katharine_marie in Anxiety, Depression, General, mental health, 0 comments

Thoughts on Words, Support, and Culture

Hello, beautiful darlings,

Is it just me or has this felt like the looonngggessst week ever? I’m getting so sick of shutdowns and being trapped at home and not being able to function like a normal human being. Ughhhh…

Anywho. Today I wanted to jump straight in and have a little chat about mental illness and a few of the things that really affect it, especially right now. Heavy subject matter maybe, but it’s something I’ve been thinking about lately.

Over the last ten years or so, possibly longer if I could remember, I’ve heard comments from all sorts of people about how mental illness must just be laziness or some other such nonsense.

“It’s all in your head.”

“Have you tried NOT being depressed?”

“You have nothing to worry about, your life is great!”

“You must not be trying hard enough. If you do X, you’ll get over it more quickly.”

“I know someone who did X and they’re totally normal now!”

Ad nauseam, on and on and on again.

Please. Just. Stop. It.

I’m begging you.

First of all, mental illness is just that. An illness. Would you say those same things to someone who was suffering from a physical medical diagnosis? I’m willing to bet that you would not. Well, some people might, but most people wouldn’t. Not only that, but mental illness is not considered an acute illness. There is such a thing as situational depression or anxiety that is caused by a traumatic event, of course, but the majority of cases are CHRONIC. Meaning that there are good phases, there are bad patches, and there’s everything in between. We keep keeping on, doing the things that help keep us in the good places and move on.

Trying to find the support that is truly needed is hard. I personally have a very small number of people that I would consider reaching out to during a really rough patch. I may write about it all on here, but 9 times out of 10, I’m writing about the experience after the worst is over.

Mental willpower is something that people misunderstand, though, and that seems to play into a lot of the bizarre comments that I and many other folks with mental issues have received. Religious communities tend to give pat answers like “pray harder!” or “if you have enough faith/trust, God will release you from your illness.” I’m sorry, but that just isn’t the case! Of course, I believe that God has the power to take away our struggles and our ailments – that not what I’m saying at all. The problem with these answers is that they’re pretty and easy. They put all the blame at the feet of the suffering individual. And we’re not meant to go through things all alone, we’re meant to go through them together, with community and encouragement and love.

The other thing that contributes to a lot of this problem is simply the culture that we have right now. The world is lonely. We have social media and memes and entertainment at our fingertips, and we’re always working and running from this place to the next. We have no true connection. We don’t have people that we do life with on a basic, emotional level. Like I said, we’re meant as humans to have a community. We’re not meant to go through life alone. And I’m not talking romantically alone, I mean having meaningful friendships and relationships that you cultivate and nurture.

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Photo by DJ Johnson on Unsplash

Trust me, I am preaching myself more than anyone right now. I have failed my friends in so many ways. I have pushed people away, and I struggle every single day just to text people back when they reach out. Nobody said that the things that we truly need would be easy to find. They take work and believe me when I say that I am SO awful at searching for community and friendship. But the times that I push through and actually try? Those are the moments that I really treasure and hold close.

That’s my little rant for the day, and reading back over this, I realize that I’ve glossed over a lot of deep topics that could very easily be turned into their own posts – so I guess that will probably happen in the future. All I’m trying to say right now is think about how powerful words can be and how important we are to each other.

What do you think? Is this something that you think about and struggle with too? I would love to hear other people’s thoughts on these ideas. 🙂


Love, kindness, and so many hugs!

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Posted by katharine_marie in Anxiety, Depression, General, Life in 2020, mental health, 0 comments

An Interest in Everything

Hello beautiful dreamers!

March is actually here now and I’m still a little panicky, but my planner and I had a heart to heart last night and I’m calming down. Maybe even getting a little excited again!

Today’s post is a bit of a recycled one. Kind of.

The third post I ever wrote here on Elemental Dreamer was a post I called Multiple Interests. It was a bit of a ramble that I wanted to get out at the time about a problem I’ve struggled with for most of my life – I’m interested in EVERYTHING.

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I enjoy riding my horse. I love writing. I find it so much fun to draw and paint and maybe even sculpt? I don’t know. I want to travel and learn more about vlogging and have The Husband teach me to shoot and edit films the way he does. Etc, etc, etc.

But it’s not feasible to do a million different things every day. Or even every month. I used to make goals for a month by taking all the things I was interested in at the time and choose one small project that I was going to do each month from each interest. Yeah, that didn’t work. Halfway through the month, I was usually distracted by five NEW things. So much fun. I always felt like I was failing at everything. Now, I think I was exploring everything, which sounds much more positive.

When I wrote that post almost a year and a half ago, I had no idea I was going to have a baby so soon or what my life was going to look like. I still felt like I was figuring a lot of things out.

Now? I still don’t have most of those things figured out, but I have finagled a system that seems to be working out okay so far for my strange little brain.

One. I try to spitball all my not so amazing ideas on The Husband. And then I go see my therapist and spew all that nonsense at her too. The poor people in my life.

Two. Things certainly settled after The Princess was born. At this point, I either have energy or time. Never both at the same time, so it’s hard to just jump into whatever vague idea I have at the time.

Three. I chose priorities for the YEAR. A year is a fairly long time. I guess. So I decided that for 2020, I would choose the most important things and go from there. Which ended up being family, horses, and writing.

My mind still works almost the same way it did a year and a half ago, but I’m handling it differently now and it’s been helping me to feel a little less spread out all over the place. It’s not to say that I don’t still want to do various other things, but that I’m not giving them the same level of time or energy that I might otherwise. I still have my sketchbooks and art supplies on my bookshelf so if I feel the urge to do an art project I can pull them out for a quick project. But only for a quick project, not a week-long project. That’s been my sticking point.

So much of my life seems to be figuring out what makes my brain tick and how to work with that for the best possible outcome. It’s a challenge for sure, but I think I can say that while I’m still definitely interested in a million different things, I’ve learned not to jump on every idea that comes my way. And that works for me.


Love, light, and kindness,

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Posted by katharine_marie in mental health, 0 comments

the importance of words

Hello lovely dreamers!

So far my blogging content has been a bit all over the place this month. The way I planned out this first quarter of the year was a bit random for that reason. Well, not random… maybe exploratory would be a better word. I’ve been making little notes on which content takes the most work to put out, what people seem to read the most of, what I enjoy writing the most, etc, etc.

The Husband is a filmmaker and he’s always dragging me into his various projects. I actually really enjoy it, even if I am absolutely not comfortable in front of the camera. At all – it makes me nervous and weird and just really awkward all around. But being a writer means we can collaborate in all kinds of ways on projects, so I try to get over the awkwardness sometimes to help him out.

Many, many online platforms – blogs, social media, whatever – have turned to video as their main source of content and I completely understand why. Our culture has quickly latched onto videos as the ideal method of online communication. Like, if The Husband has something he needs to look up, I guarantee you he’s not going to pull up an article and read it, looking for what he wants. He’s on Youtube, clicking around between videos and finding the one he likes best.

But I still don’t work that way. I still prefer to type my query into Google and find a nice, detailed informative article about my topic. I only really started actually watching those Facebook videos a year or so ago.

So the society, the people who are taking in the content we produce, does have a strong tendency towards video.

But I’m not entirely sure whether this blog is the place to carry video content, although it’s something I’ve considered a lot in the past.

Do I have some ideas in mind for video projects surrounding this blog? Absolutely and I hope to start on a few of them this year yet! But this isn’t ever going to become a video-centric blog because hello! words! that’s the whole reason I’m here at all.

Sometimes it makes me a little sad that blogging seems to be fading a little, but I have to remember just how many blogs I personally read and follow and maybe, even though it’s not necessarily the height of online content creation anymore, it is still a very valued piece of the internet and it’s never going away.

This is why, even though I love my Kindle and use it more often than not, I still insist on collecting real, physical books. Because writers and books are the reasons we know what we do about the past. Without books and poems and blogs and everything in between, we lost some of that connection to the previous generation.

Working with The Husband on all these video projects has really given me such a fascination for the art that he creates, but my first love is still words on paper (sorry, love!) and I will keep writing down my thoughts and ideas and teaching my daughter to love the special stories and adventures that can found only between the covers of a book.

What are your thoughts on the way the world is with media these days?


Love, light, kindness, and adventures galore!

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Posted by katharine_marie in Blog Writing, Books & Writing, Creative Writing, General, Life of a Writer, 0 comments

POLL: Blogging in 2020

Hi there, wonderful dreamers!

I’m finishing up my final week of work today and it’s causing me to think a lot about what I’m going to do in the future. Exciting, scary, and everything in between. But mostly exciting.

Along that vein, I’m thinking about what I’m going to do with this blog space in 2020. Of course, when I wrote my ideas for the year, I put down “blog consistently”. Which could be a very objective phrase – consistently means different things to different people.

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I’ve done fairly well recently in getting a blog post up every week – ideally though, I would like to post twice a week. So in the back of my head, that is a goal I’m working towards.

Earlier in January, I plotted out all my blog posts for the first three months of the year – for Elemental Dreamer, for my horse site, and my own private journal. Lots of writing. Haha. But anyways, I’m working towards that consistent two posts per week goal and I actually think this year is the year I’ll make it! Or maybe that’s just leftover new-year-optimism. Who knows.

But in all seriousness. I’ve given a lot of thought to the type of content I want up here. Without even trying, most of my content has always been somewhat centered on mental health. And I love that because I strongly believe in speaking out about mental health awareness. But I do technically classify this as a lifestyle blog, so I constantly try to work in other topics.

When I first started blogging, I used to post a lot more of my fiction projects. This is something that I’m going to be bringing back with a new series of short stories, starting in March!

I’m also going to be recycling some of my ancient ideas with a new, refreshing writing style, talking about some real, down-to-earth ideas for dealing with mental health, trying out new hobbies and projects, expanding on the very serious problem of post-partum erasure, and so much more! And of course, I’ll continue to ramble about my own personal life, probably more often than I need to.

So now I’m asking… what are your favorite blog topics? What do you like to read about?

Let me know!!

[crowdsignal poll=10495340]


Love, light, and kindness overflowing,

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Posted by katharine_marie, 0 comments

Thoughts for November

Hello dear lovely readers,

I definitely have not been keeping up with my usual blogging schedule this month. The first half of the month I was very distracted with getting words written on my Nanowrimo project and now I’m just having trouble getting any words written at all.

This past week has just been really rough overall. Even though the Tiny Princess still wakes up at night to eat, we had been more or less on a routine and I was getting decent chunks of sleep in between her feedings. And then, for no apparent reason except the fact that she’s a baby, she decided to wake up at completely random times for a whole slew of different reasons other than being hungry. It’s taken almost a week at this point but she is FINALLY settling back into a rhythm so maybe I can stop feeling like a zombie again soon? I don’t know. Now I just need to get her back to her wakeup time being 8am and not 7am. I love you, munchkin, but I desperately need that one hour to myself first thing in the morning, thank you very much! <insert slightly delirious laughter here>

We are also coming up on the holidays. Thanksgiving is next week (Whaaaa? How!) and then it’s Christmas time and then suddenly it’s going to be 2020. I would be one hundred percent okay with time just stopping for a hot minute, but sadly that will never be the case so I guess I just need to get my life together and enjoy the holidays. Which I always do, of course, although this year I’m probably putting some extra pressure on myself to get some family traditions started with the Tiny Princess. I’m awful at putting excess pressure on myself when I shouldn’t, isn’t that right? Something else to work on, I suppose.

It’s been a challenging week in terms of mental health too. It’s a little ironic though, since at the end of last week I was just thinking about how good I had been feeling and things were going well. Ha ha ha… every time I notice that things are good is when they take that turn again. Anxiety was the first one to rock the boat and then, especially with the lack of sleep factored in, things just devolved to where I am now – an uber fragile emotional state wherein one random word can bring on tears and completely ruin my day. I’ll be the first one to bring up the fact that we have the strongest influence on our own moods, but to me that’s the difference between just a bad day and a day where my brain is short circuiting: how well I can control my own moods and feelings. And this week it’s definitely been the brain. Well, and the not sleeping. That too.

In case you can’t tell how much sleep I’ve been lacking, this post has just become a rambling mess at this point. But that’s okay, I haven’t done one quite like this in a while.


With one week left in November, this is usually the time when I start to focus on what’s coming up in the next year and brainstorm new goals and all sorts of new crazy s*$! I can plan to do. Sometimes I even ruin my holiday moments with all of that. But not this time.

I’ve earmarked a page in my planner and labeled it “2020”. Now, for the next 4-5 weeks (or until Christmas is over) whenever an idea or a thought pops into my head about the future, I’m jotting it down on that page. Once I go back to work after Christmas, then I’m going to actually take a look at that page and figure out what next year might hold.

For right now I want to focus on making memories and enjoying the holidays, bonding with my family, my husband, and my sweet baby girl. Time goes by way too quickly and right now I’m tired of wasting it by focusing so far in the future. Adaline is never going to have another first Thanksgiving or another first Christmas and even though she won’t remember it, I intend to enjoy it with her as much as possible.

I’m going to go ahead and scale back my blog posts for the rest of 2019, depending on how I’m feeling on any given day. I suppose we can consider this my winter break – the intention is to come back in full force once January arrives.


All the love and kindness for the season ahead!

Katharine Marie

Posted by katharine_marie in Anxiety, mental health, 0 comments

Thoughts for Autumn 2019

Hello, all you other autumn-loving folks!

We all know by now that fall is probably my favorite season of all. I enjoy the coziness of winter and I look forward to spring since it usually marks the end of my seasonal depression (SAD) but autumn is still, and always will be, my favorite season.

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The weather is finally changing! Actually, as I write this we’re in the middle of a cold front with the temperatures down to the 50s and 60s during the day. We’ll have some good days in the 80s and 90s again before the month is over, but still, it’s a nice break from the 100 degree days! Considering I was dealing with those while being eight and nine months pregnant, I am absolutely LOVING this cooler weather. It is the best thing ever.

Since the weather has been cooler I’ve been able to break out my flannel shirts and soon enough I’ll get to unpack my sweaters. That excites me way too much probably but I don’t care because fall fashion is my favorite. I think I wrote about that last year actually.

I’m finally feeling ready to have a hot drink again, so far mostly just tea in the evenings, although I did have an internal debate in the drivethru the other day about whether to get my usual hot or iced. The iced coffee still won out that day but I would bet money on that being the last time for the year.


It’s hard to ramble about how I’m feeling because it’s not just the seasons that are changing – I’ve been in a huge shift personally lately as well… mentally, physically, and spiritually. All because I’m still adjusting to being a mom and figuring out what exactly that means and looks like for me.

But this time of year I always start feeling those homebody vibes. Wanting to be cozy and focusing more inwardly, both on my relationships and my own self. I start looking ahead to the holiday season, mentally feeling out possible Christmas presents and craving pumpkin pie. It’s already becoming the most wonderful time of the year for me!


The fall season of 2019 doesn’t really hold a lot of big projects for me. Starting our biggest adventure yet – the adventure of raising the Tiniest Princess – is top priority, of course. Beyond that nothing else feels super important yet.

I may or may not participate in Nanowrimo this November after all. It’s been something I planned to do all year, and really I’ll still be able to, time-wise at least. But so far I don’t really have any idea which project I want to work on. So it will probably come down to whether I come up with a good idea before November 1st or not. If I don’t, it’s not the end of the world. There’s always next year if this year doesn’t pan out.

Although, now that I’m writing this I did have an inkling of an idea that might work out. We shall see!

This isn’t so much an autumn project, but rather just an end of the year project… but I want to make a bigger effort not to be caught up in the consumerism of the holiday season today. I want to try to limit the amount of store bought gifts for Christmas and I don’t want to let myself buy into the stress of Black Friday shopping. It’s a bad habit of mine that I am trying to break. Living in a smaller space right now definitely is helping since I don’t have places to put new stuff!

Something I don’t really get into on this blog is my spiritual life (oddly enough, since I try to be so honest about my mental health journey) but this season of life is finding me in a state of rediscovery, of questioning a lot of things and making some choices about my inner self. I’ll get into this a little more in one of next week’s posts, but I’m allowing this to be a journey that I give a little more focus to this autumn season.

Do you love the fall season? What do you have planned for the next few weeks/months?


Love and kindness,

Katharine Marie

Posted by katharine_marie in mental health, 0 comments

An Open Letter

To my precious baby girl,

There are so many moments that I am trying to capture right now, both through pictures and words. I’m becoming so painfully aware of just how quickly you’re growing and I desperately want to make time stand still, just for a little while so I can take it all in.

I honestly did not know how much my heart was capable of. Everyone told me about how much things would change when you were born, but I guess it was one of those things that you really can’t understand until it happens to you.

I can’t remember what it was like not to plan my day around your meals and naps. I don’t really know how to focus on something else anymore because you are always in the back of my mind.

There have been a few moments, usually in the middle of the night, when I just want to take a break… or sometimes during the day when some time to myself would be the best thing ever. But even when I do get those moments to myself, when I do get to take a hot shower and relax, it’s not the same because I’m still wondering whether you’re okay without me. Even right now, I’m typing this while you take a nap and I keep pausing to listen, to make sure you’re still asleep. I have to make myself stay put and not check on you every two minutes.

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You’re still so small and I’m still trying to figure out what you need at any given moment. I cry a lot because I have no idea what I’m doing and I just know that I’m failing you as a mom. But I can see that you recognize me, my face and my voice, and a lot of the time that’s all you want – just to see or hear me, and then you’re happy.

I wonder a lot about what kind of person you’re going to grow into and I think about what all you’ll end up doing throughout your life. Your daddy and I are very adamant about letting you be your own person and we’re trying not to have any pre-conceived ideas about what we want you to do with your life, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t think about it. I wonder what your favorite stuffed animal is going to be over the next couple of years. I think about what your favorite part of school will be once we get into that stage, and what subject you’ll fight me on every day. I want to know what hobbies you’ll get into and whether you’ll want to play sports and I try not to hope too much that maybe you’ll enjoy riding horses with me.

No, I don’t want to get ahead of myself and focus on those things. All I want is for you to grow into a strong, brave woman. Someone who is kind and gentle and always goes after whatever it is that she wants. I want you to never ever forget that no matter what, I’m always going to be here for you and I’ll always have your back – even when you’re a teenager and you kind of hate me. So yes, I hope you become an amazing person, but mostly I just hope that I’ll be the mom that you need in order to become that person.

And I want to do my absolute best to make sure that I am that mom, whatever that takes. I am so, SO blessed to have your dad beside me, and in turn you are a very lucky girl to have him too. I honestly have no idea how I would be handling this adventure without his help.

Of course I’m reading all the books and the blogs and I’m asking my mom a million questions – I’m trying to suck all the helpful information in without getting overwhelmed. And then I’m trying to learn exactly what you’re life because even with all the tips and expert knowledge that I can read, nothing is the same as learning exactly what your different cries sound like or how you like to be held or how long you like to eat for. I have to learn what your quirks and preferences are, and I love how special you are (yes, I’m still biased).

I guess it’s a good thing that I’m already learning that hard lesson – nothing will replace listening to my own baby instead of all the opinions and ideas that get thrown at me. And I intend to keep that lesson close to my heart because no matter how old you get, listening to you will always be the most helpful thing I can do.

I love you, baby girl. I’m so proud (and also terrified) to be your mom and I can’t wait to see what you become. I had no idea what I was getting myself into, but I had no idea how much you would change me.

Forever and ever, I’ll always love you.

-your mommy

 

p.s. also, just stop growing for a while. just stay this small for a bit longer. please??

Posted by katharine_marie, 0 comments

Saving Our Mental Space

Hello dear readers!

Today I’m coming at you again with a post about mental health. Exactly the content you were looking for today, I know!

I am a very introverted person and I’ve had to learn how to manage myself so that I don’t overwork myself or use up all my energy on things that aren’t really worth my time. It’s a delicate line to walk and I don’t succeed nearly every time.

We all know the detrimental effects that can be felt when we push our physical limits too far. Something could go wrong or we could get injured and then be out of commission for a long while. At some point we are forced to take a step back and realize that we can’t take on everything all at once. It just doesn’t work that way.

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I want to take it a bit further and offer up the idea that maybe we’re not just pushing ourselves physically but also mentally and emotionally. We already have schedules that get filled up far too quickly and we’re having to find space to squeeze this new thing into them. But I find that regardless of my actual schedule, I often still end up giving away space in my mind for things that don’t really belong there.

My brain moves a million miles a second. It’s exhausting just being in my head sometimes. But yet I still end up taking on the problems and burdens of everyone around me which then makes everything even more exhausting!

Mental health is finally being talked about more and I’m so happy about it! It’s a great thing that the world is finally starting to see mental illnesses in a similar light as physical illnesses – hopefully more people will be able to get the help they need without having to deal with the stigma and backlash that comes from it.

I truly think it should be a normal thing to turn something down, not just because it might not fit into your schedule, but also because you might not have the mental capacity for it at the time. I have many times when I have absolutely nothing on my calendar for the evening, but someone texts me at noon and asks if I can help with something that night. Most of us, if we don’t already have a prior commitment would feel guilty if we didn’t do so. But what if I’ve already had a really tough morning and that evening off is what I need to get through the rest of the week? Does that count as a good reason to say no? My personal opinion is to say yes, it is a legitimate reason.

More people just need to acknowledge and understand the fact that just because someone seems okay or in good spirits does not mean they really are. I have days where my anxiety is nearly crippling and I still make it to work and I still smile and keep a brave face on. My coworkers are awesome, but the customers I deal with sometimes have no idea that their attitude or their way of dumping their crap on me just because I happen to be sitting in front of them is a major trigger for me. They don’t know, but it comes down to the saying that floats around Facebook sometimes: “Always be kind because you have no idea what that person is going through.” And it doesn’t just apply to being rude, but also to being emotionally taxing.

I am very very blessed to have close friends who understand what I go through and will usually check in with me before they lay out their own problems. I love my friends and I never want to turn them down but there have been times where depression is trying really hard to drag me down and I simply can’t be the support system that they need. In those cases, it’s not going to help either one of us.

There are people, some of them in my own life, who would say that people have just gotten too sensitive about everything. This often presents itself as that “problem with millennials,” which is so silly to me. I think instead that people have simply gotten a lot more outspoken about how they are feeling. People are finding the courage and the space to express the fact that they are hurting. The bottom line is that we need to learn to respect that. I don’t think people are necessarily hurting or feeling more than they did fifty years ago, it’s more that the space exists now and the idea is more prevalent that those feelings and pain are valid and legitimate.

I’m glad that mental health information is more widespread now. I’m glad that more space exists for personal expression and emotions are being more accepted as valid instead of weaknesses. The next step is to really see that it’s not our job to fix everyone else’s problems or explain everyone else’s feelings. We need to learn better how to handle and balance our own issues so that then we can support our friends and family better on their own journey.

This is something that I’m personally working on. I don’t have a lot of mental space to spare. Between focusing on my marriage and my family while still battling anxiety and depression, I have a lot to deal with. Knowing that I don’t have to fix my friends’ problems though but instead just support them through whatever is going on? That helps me balance things out though.

I rarely have a soapbox moment but I guess this could be considered one of them. Most of this probably doesn’t actually make a lot of sense together, but it’s been on my mind lately so I decided to cobble a bunch of thoughts together. Maybe it made you think a little bit too. At least I hope so.


Lots of love and kindness, because today’s world can be incredibly cruel.

Katharine Marie

Posted by katharine_marie in Anxiety, Depression, mental health, 0 comments

Summer Thoughts

Good morning beautiful fellow dreamers!

Living in Northeast Texas, I’ve gotten to experience some pretty intense summers over the years. We don’t usually get the worst of it but as someone who doesn’t really coexist with the heat particularly well, its bad enough, thank you very much!

And despite being born in the middle of July, summer has never been my favorite season. I enjoy it for a while and then I’m ready for something else.

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This year, being seven and eight months pregnant during the worst of the heat, has been a little extra rough. I’ve been outside very little and when I do get out it wears me out ridiculously fast. So I’m just drinking a ton of water and staying indoors most of the time.

The best parts of summer though, are just the simple things sometimes. It’s the evenings spent sitting and talking while the sun goes down. It’s the laughter in the swimming pool and the sheer volume of lemonade that gets consumed in a single day.

Where I work I have a prime spot for people watching and the last week has been pretty crazy. People are doing their school shopping, getting ready for this next phase of the year. It’s exciting and it usually really makes me miss the feeling of the new school year.

But even though autumn is my favorite season and probably always will be, I’ve found myself holding onto summer this year. Maybe it’s because autumn is bringing some big changes to my life and I want to cling to these summer moments before they pass by. Or maybe it’s because I’ve found something about summer that is worth holding onto for once.

Whatever the case may be, and despite not really enjoying the heat, I’m enjoying summer this year. For me, since I don’t have to think about school, summer isn’t really over until Labor Day, but it’s coming quickly.

The little things are the important ones, even if it is just a simple summer day.


Love and kindness,

Katharine Marie

Posted by katharine_marie, 0 comments