Posts Tagged: anxiety

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FlyingNinjaMom

Waxed canvas khaki diaper bag

Jetlag + rain = a baby who sleeps until 9AM (and a VERY happy mother)

You know how usually you get off a plane after a cross-country flight and you're like ugggggggg I'm exhausted I just want to be home already? Yesterday, as I was pushing my daughter's stroller through the snow towards the taxi stand with one hand and pulling a sixty-pound (oops) suitcase with the other, a laptop bag and a camera bag and a diaper bag and a purse hanging from my body and a half-eaten package of popcorn suspended precariously in the cupholder, I heard actual music playing in my head. And it wasn't, like, Sarah MacLachlan: it was a TRIUMPHANT ORCHESTRAL SYMPHONY. I think it may have been the Rocky theme song.

Because I KILLED IT yesterday.

Anxiety

Photos Of Flowers (And Being Gentle With Yourself)

Oversized pom pom Smile hat for toddlers from the Gap

Grey Knit Hat (for women) | Smile Hat (for kids)

I was playing around with lighting and props for a shoot I have coming up, and took these test photos, and...I don't know, I just thought they came out well, so I wanted to show them to you. Sometimes it's nice to just look at a pretty photograph of flowers and pom poms.

On my drive down to LA, I started listening to a podcast - Elizabeth Gilbert's Magic Lessons, in which she discusses the process of exploring (and hopefully unleashing) your creativity. (I'm aware that this does not appear to have anything at all to do with the aforementioned flowers and hats, but bear with me, because I do have a point here.)

Anxiety

A Ramble About Insomnia, Because Coffee

via

First, I would like to announce that I am at this very moment sitting in heaven. It's a place called Whimsy located a few towns over from me, and it's a half-cafe half-play space where you can hang out and drink coffee and use the free WiFi while your children get their organic toy on (in Northern California, apparently, toys are not toys unless they are Melissa & Doug toys). Your children are watched by a bunch of lovely young women who will come get you if they need something, but basically:

You are alone. In relative silence. With coffee.

Anxiety

Anxious

medication

It's been awhile since I published my post Someone With Problems, about my decade-long struggle with anxiety and my decision to finally, despite a deep-rooted discomfort with the idea of seeking outside help, try medication (Zoloft, if you're wondering).

Now it's a year later, and so I wanted to talk about how it's going.

It's better. So much better, most of the time. But not always.

DIARY

The Post I Wish I’d Read Before Having My Second Child

| Follow Ramshackle Glam on Instagram |

Six weeks after my daughter was born, an email landed in my inbox that sounded like it had come from the inside of my own head. A reader, J, wrote to me that she was pregnant with her second baby, and that she was excited, of course...but also scared. Scared of how her life was going to change - rewind from the calm of the toddler era to the madness of the infant period - and scared that her relationship with her first baby would be...not lost, but dimmed somehow. Pushed aside.

Her email was such a relief to me to receive, because I understood it completely. I had struggled so much with these fears myself and experienced such enormous guilt about them that...I guess it just helped to know that others felt exactly as I did.

DIARY

The Village

Some of my favorite memories from when I was growing up are of the times we drove upstate to visit my parents' friends at the 1950s-style family resort they owned. All day (and night) long the grownups hung out in the common room and drank wine and played chess and talked and laughed while the kids played a board game, or searched for Tiny Toon Adventures on the old TV by the bar, or hid under dining room tables telling secrets, and it was all just so...communal. Not just family units in threes and fours braving the waters in rickety little boats; an actual village full of parents and children and grandchildren and babies, everyone doing their own thing, but together just the same.

I remember the sound of it, you know? The sort of grownup buzzing that's the soundtrack of so much of your childhood; those conversations about politics that you can't even begin to make sense of, those jokes that make your parents laugh until they turn red and that you don't understand but laugh at anyway, just because they're happy and so you're happy, too. It's the same sound that you hear late at night when you're in the backseat of the car driving home from somewhere, and your parents start talking about work or something else your kid self doesn't care about, and you fall asleep to the sound of their office frustrations and traffic reports on the radio, and feel warm and peaceful and safe.

It's cool, seeing how happy our kids are when we have friends over. Not because anyone's doting on them, especially, but just because I get the sense it's exciting, getting to be a part of what Grownup Life is like. The other day we had a few friends over for lunch and swimming, and when the sun started to set we decided to take a mini-picnic out to the trellis-covered tables by the playground down the block. We swung on swings and climbed hills and ran around with the dogs and just sat and talked, and the kids stayed up late and ended the night watching cartoons on the bed while we ordered Thai food and talked some more, and it reminded me of those weekends at the hotel way back when.

Anxiety

Someone With Problems

I wrote a few weeks ago how, in the days following Goldie's birth - when I feared a relapse of the postpartum depression that I'd suffered from after Indy arrived - I was prescribed a low-dose medication to combat the chronic insomnia and anxiety that I've been dealing with for a good decade (and hopefully make PPD more unlikely). It's been two months, and I figure now is as good of a time as any to write about how it's been going.

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Growing up, my parents taught me that no one would handle my problems for me; it was on me to face them, and then fix them. If I had an issue with a teacher, a fight with a friend, an essay that I just couldn't seem to get right, they were there to listen and offer suggestions, of course, but they were not going to storm the gates and take over; finding a solution was my job. And I'm grateful for that.

Anxiety

If You Only Ask

I went into the birth of my second child absolutely convinced I'd experience at least some degree of the postpartum depression I dealt with after Indy was born. It was something I brought up at my very first appointment after finding out we were expecting, and something that I touched base with my doctors about over the course of the next few months. I didn't want it to catch me unguarded and without a plan in place, because with a toddler and an infant to think about, being that emotionally out of sorts even for even a day didn't feel like an option.

My primary concern: you know how I've written extensively about my insomnia (which is largely related to my anxiety)? Well, when you have a newborn, you sleep even less. And less sleep = a greater chance of suffering from PPD.

At the mid-point in my pregnancy, I went to meet with a psychiatrist (which I should have done a long, long time ago), because even though I didn't want to start any new medications while expecting, I figured you know what? I've been dealing with this problem long enough. I've tried lots of different things - some that have worked for a time, and some that haven't worked at all - and if there's a longer-term, more stable solution, I'd like to find it. What we decided: that I'd start on an extremely low-dose daily antidepressant immediately following the birth. I don't suffer from depression, but apparently this kind of medication can help to shut off the sort of ruminative thinking that characterizes my particular type of anxiety.

(As a side note, this decision to try medication wasn't something I was going to talk about here - it feels so, so personal - but then I realized: am I ashamed that I suffer from insomnia and anxiety? No. Am I ashamed that I've tried lots of different things over the years, and that now I'm going to try this? No. And I know that these are issues that a lot of people suffer from, and that a lot of people feel ashamed about, and I believe with all my heart that there is no shame in being open about your struggles and seeking out help wherever you can find it.)

Anxiety

A Peculiar Thing

The below is an excerpt from Ramshackle Glam. I wanted to share it on the site because it explores a topic that I've touched upon a lot here - the anxiety that I felt during my pregnancy, and in the weeks after giving birth - but that I felt like I never really got to the bottom of until I wrote this essay.

(Read the full book on your Kindle here.)

Early on in my pregnancy, when I was busy tying myself up in knots about things like strollers and closets and finding room for bottle drying racks on our nonexistent countertop, one of the things I actually didn’t worry a ton about, oddly enough, was . . . the baby. I just kind of figured he’d be okay. I mean, of course I went to all my doctor’s appointments, ate decently well, and avoided the stuff you’re supposed to avoid, but mostly I just sort of got on with it and trusted that everything would turn out fine. He’d be born, and be loved and happy and ours, and our little family would roll on into wherever it was we were headed.


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