The One Where I'm No Longer Staying Away or Pretending It's All Okay

It feels good to be blogging again.  So why haven't I been blogging regularly?  One reason is my intention for this blog.  I want this blog to be inspiring, positive, and upbeat.  But frankly I haven't often felt this way lately.  I want to practice what I preach--the value of play--and yet, I find myself connecting more with social media than with myself and others in real time through play.

I value authenticity.  If I covered my blog in hip quotes and platitudes it wouldn't feel genuine.  So I have avoided this space.  Partly I've had unrealistic expectations for myself as a counseling professor, play therapist, creative, and mom.  The exaggerated version being that I must have it all together.

Meanwhile, I have struggled with something off and on for about the last 3 years.  Something that I can't specifically go into in this space but some of you who read this post may know or think you know what it is.  It has challenged me as much as, if not more than, the biggest challenges I've faced in my life: a move before I started high school; the suicide of a friend; the stress of graduate school and writing a dissertation with a baby at home; and breastfeeding, colicky babies, lack of sleep, and postpartum moods.

I think I've turned a corner, yet sometimes I can be triggered and the negative thoughts and feelings come back and leave me in a funk.

One unfortunate byproduct we can get from the on-line world (e.g., blogs, facebook, and instragram) is the idea that the grass is greener on the other side or they have no weeds to squash.  Just silly thinking, as anyone on-line chooses what they wish to express on the electronic stage.

Today, on my son's 8th birthday (I had wanted to write and post this on the first day of spring), I'm sharing my struggle.  I don't always have it all together.  I'm human.  It's arrogant of me to think I have life figured out, because I've experienced two rounds of personal therapy, personal growth group counseling, and two graduate degrees in counseling.  As if I have met my quota for bad stuff.

Nope, life had more up its sleeve.  More lessons for me to learn.

Today I celebrate the most important boy in my life.  The bad stuff really does serve to remind us how precious life is and to teach us something if we're open to the learning.

The scanned picture above is a chalk drawing I made sometime last year (I think).  In the dirt are all sorts of negative emotions I had been feeling.  Intuitively and trustingly, I knew that something beautiful would come from all the yuckiness.