Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Be My Valentine--Marriage Challenge

Confession time here. I'm not a big Valentine's Day person. I don't like all the commercialism, and I don't like the fact that we spend all this time and money to show our spouse/significant other how much we care for and love them on Feb. 14th. So here's my question... why just one day? Why not every day? Granted I would gain a thousand pounds if my husband brought me chocolate everyday (in theory--I would probably die of happiness since chocolate is one of my favorites) but really folks--we need to show our love, gratitude, and support more often.

Enter Women Living Well. They are hosting a 4 week challenge for Valentine's Day. The point -- to praise, encourage, inspire, admire, build up, thank, and appreciate our husbands, partners, and significant others-- and that, in my opinion, is a challenge worth taking.

Now let me explain... this is going to be a big deal for me. In our busy, rush-rush, trying to balance work, marriage, and an extremely active 2-1/2 year old world, true conversation with my husband is reduced to almost nothing. I mean nothing says I love like "will you please pick up your ties" or "Can I please get some help over here!", and don't even get me started on all the socks laying all over the house.... More often than not I don't give my husband enough credit for the wonderful things he does do-- like bath time with Duncan, his famous back-rubs, or even taking the time to empty the dishwasher.

This being week one of the challenge, I have jumped in full force. I've "pimped" my husband out on facebook thanking him for spending time with us on our surprise snow day Thursday; I've worked hard to find at least one thing a day to thank him for daily... and it's working. I am not only working on my appreciation, but I find that I'm beginning to see just how much he does in our marriage. And he really is a wonderful man.

I am so up for this challenge. How about you? Are you willing to work on your marriage as I am? I ask that you pray for me as work to show just how much I love and care for my husband every day--not just one day of the year.  If you are, let me know and we can do it together.

Here are this weeks details....

Week 1: January 21st-27th - Look for ways to praise your husband verbally. Praise him in front of the kids, friends, family, co-workers, on facebook, tweet it - get praise out anyway you can. Be sure to mention noteworthy things he does -- as a provider, a father, husband, lover, friend, and partner. Say something kind and loving to your husband everyday until Valentine's Day arrives and beyond!

Monday, January 14, 2013

Happy Monday

Happy Monday all! So, just because we all need a little smile and a wave hello (and who doesn't love cute kids doing it).... Hello!! Oh, and please excuse the french toast syrup face and morning playroom destruction.

picture by K.Innes

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Why January Why?

Dear January--

I have to admit you are not my favorite month. Why you may ask? Because you signal the end of the holidays, time with my family, some small time of relaxation that I get before the chaos of giving and grading high school exams. You still get dark before I get home, it's cloudy most days--granted you are giving me a small gift this weekend of almost 70 degree weather, but with a chance of rain? Come on! How am I to handle a crazy active 2.5 year old who wants to go out and play?

But seriously, January has always been a tough month for me. I struggle with the chaos of the holidays and trying to get everything done and wham...add school pressure and I want to run and hide. My first week back at school as been crazy busy. And it has not helped my situation at all. Since I find myself not sleeping well, I crave sleep--away from everyone, but that's just not possible in my world.  I find I'm getting rattled and frustrated very easily, and I don't handle things very well. I want to burst into tears and run away. I know--tough right. 

I’m 41 years old and I’ve battled depression for almost 13 years. I was diagnosed with mild to moderate depression after my father died in 2000, but looking back, I honestly think it was there even further back--in college. There were days I couldn’t understand why I couldn’t stop crying and didn't want to even get out of bed. And yes I’m now medicated and I’ve been through countless hours of counseling-- I’ve educated myself and know my triggers. Yet still I beat myself up for not being able to snap out of it.
Depression--all mental illnesses to be correct-- is beyond frustrating for everyone involved. I know, I’ve been on both ends for depression runs rampant in my gene pool hitting most of my family--mom, dad,  sister, brother, aunts and even my grandmother. Not a pretty way of life I know. I worry about my son and if he will be affected, I pray that he doesn't, but at least I know what to watch for.

So why did I start this post with my dislike for January? Because for so many people January is a rough month--and yes, I've heard the excuses "I'm just stressed "or "Oh, it's nothing, I'm just not sleeping well", and I want folks to know that I am right there with you. I hope that a majority of you who are reading this never have to deal with this beast... but if you do... you are not alone. Here's to our health and a better January.