My birth mom never made it to 30. My beloved second mom is in her sixties, and makes it look very good. My over-40 friends make it clear that it’s a really good club to be joining. I am done freaking out about turning 40, and just in time.
I’m going to be 40 in 2 hours. As of this morning, I’m finally ok with that.
When I was younger, I really wanted people to think I was beautiful, then I wanted them to think of me as smart, then I wanted to be funny, now I just want to bring people comfort.
Which is why I write here. I hope you too see ppdtojoy.com as a comfort zone.
A lot is written and said in praise of stepping outside your comfort zone. And yes, I get why people find the idea attractive.
But I think that as women and mothers, our comfort is not valued enough. Too much of our existence is about providing for others, meeting their needs, and even more often, meeting their expectations. Not enough time and permission are extended towards our own comfort. On this here website, I call for tending our comfort zone as if it were a garden: finding out what it is that comforts and nourishes us, and giving that attention, importance, and power.
The only reason I can talk about depression, anxiety, and even suicide, is not because I am so good at stepping outside of my comfort zone, but because I am good at stretching it: I have enough practice in infusing the scary with the comforting and the nourishing, so I feel supported and safe when I go out on a limb, because my safety net (community + family + self-kindness + trust) is always within reach. (This is not something I was just naturally good at, you know. Thankfully, these are the acquire-able skills for happiness I call Permission-Based Healing of course.)
This is what I aim to do here, what my UnGuilt Trip classes are all about, and why I bother to get out of bed in the morning, or stay out of bed much too late at night, writing, despite my body’s growing discomforts with typing (audio posts are in the works, subscribe to email updates if you are interested).
As I move into the next decade of my life (I don’t usually make such a big deal out of birthdays, you know) and as this blog reaches its first anniversary today,(check out my first post here, I’m a little self-conscious about it) I would like to thank you from the bottom of my heart for being with me on this journey.
And I ask that you consider gifting me with your comment. Blogging can be very lonely, just me and my screen, writing my heart out but not really knowing who I touch and how or why. So if you have a minute of child-free arms, I hope you would feel safe enough to tell me something about yourself — as much or as little as you wish. If you are shy, you don’t even have to tell me your name: you can be just Anna’s mom (even if your kid’s name is Jane!). Absolutely no need to step outside your comfort zone for this one, and please don’t feel bad if you don’t comment. But I would love to know that you were here, today, or some other day, and that you found even a tiny bit of comfort.
If you want to help extend this comfort to other women you know, how about sharing this blog with a friend? If you got a place on the internet, how about putting my blog badge somewhere where mamas will find it? Make sure to also post a link to your blog on my community & resources page while you’re at it.
As always, love from here to eternity (and back), and whether you comment or not, may the joy be with you.
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P.S. Speaking of blogiversary, my dear friend Jaime (she tweets as @jamesandjax) is also celebrating a year of blogging today. Jaime writes about her journey of recovery from ppd and anxiety while balancing work and motherhood. Her blog www.jamesandjax.com is sweet and insightful. Please check it out and congratulate her on a year of fabulous meaningful writing.
P.S. 2: don’t forget our #ppdSpeakEasy phone support chat coming up on Tuesday at noon. Jaime is planning on joining us. Yay! Let’s make it a PPD party, where we cry if we want to…
P.S. 3: do you know about the #bluebloggers fundraiser for suicide prevention? I’m one of a growing group of bloggers who put their money and hair where our hearts are. We are a part of Cristi’s team, she is raising $5k for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, parent organization of the Crisisline, where I used to be a hotline counselor volunteer. I’ve asked my friends to donate in lue of a birthday gift this year. If every one of my readers donated $1, Cristi will be much closer to her goal, and another round of bloggers will sport blue dos. Like @momgosomething, that in itself is worth the effort.
P.S. 4: It’s almost midnight. I’m really going to bed now. Honest.