As I'm sitting here at my desk at work 3 days before we celebrate the birth of our Savior, I am overwhelmed with a sense of Peace and immense love. As many of you know, I have been struggling with PPD, Post Pardum Depression. It has been a really rough year, despite how many blessings we have in our lives, its been hands down the hardest year. Just yesterday I woke up and I felt....Free. I felt like the weight of darkness had lifted off of my shoulders and I can honestly say that I am filled with Joy and Peace.
As true to the title of this blog, Heart on my Sleeve, I want to express to you a few things. Becoming a new mom, as many of you know, it is tough. There are things you aren't told and aren't shown or known that will change in your life. I know everyone is different and everyone deals with things differently, but this is my experience. This is what was true for me. I have changed. I have been changed, by this tiny human. Forever.
Part of what I wasn't accepting was myself. I couldn't comprehend that I could change who I was so drastically. From becoming a complete extrovert to more of an introvert. To being very social, to being a home body and finding security and refuge in my home, my husband and my son. I have accepted that who I am is not perfect. Who I am IS perfect in God's eyes. And He is okay with who I am, so why can't I? How do I get this joy and peace that i want so desperately, I can feel it in my bones? How can I find that? ONLY through the power of Jesus. Only through accepting myself and loving myself. Telling myself, Amber, you are OK. There is so much more to this than I think I can ever express, but what I want to say to myself when I'm faced with this again, is, It's okay. You are okay. You are loved.
I think for so many, you can hear it until you want to rip your ears off, but until you grasp it and accept it, it will not be your reality. It won't be your truth.
My saddest part about all of this, are some of the relationships I have failed and lost because of what depression is. I take responsibility for my choices and my actions, but it is serious business. If you know someone who is depressed, be kind. Have patience. Your relationship will be different and it will be isolating. Just know it's not you, its the person dealing with the depression. Some days is enough to get out of bed.
My reality, there were days when I wouldn't even make it into work. My boss is amazing and so flexible. I had talked with him about what I was dealing with and he understood. Talk about grace.
I'm not who I was before I had Luke. In so many ways. My body is different. It process things differently. I have a few jiggly bits that I didn't have before. My world is consumed with my son. His well being and his safety and mostly I want him to know what LOVE is. And to know that he is loved.
I'm not the same girl who Justin married. I was desperately afraid he wouldn't like me. This new me. I'm finding out what unconditional love really is. Something that I never truly understood before.
We are taught about it, and we know that our parents love us with this love and so does God. Until you really fully understand it and experience it giving away from yourself with it, its a hard love to grasp.
I am a very literal person. I have to truly understand what something is in order to understand how i feel about it or how to show it.
So, 2016, here is to the new me. Here is to the different girl that I am and who I am okay with. This year will be spent getting healthy so I can be the best I can be for my husband, my son and any other children God decides to bless us with. And yes, I am open to more kids now. I even told Justin I would be open to having more than 2.......GASP! the world is TRULY changing......
Joy and Peace to you this Season of Noel, God with Us.