Loud & Proud

Somedays I look at myself and wonder how the hell I made it this far. I’ve made some horrible decisions in my life and some pretty great ones. It always makes me wonder how different my life would be if I made each decision different. If I didn’t kiss that boy, if I went left instead of right, or if I skipped class and went to that concert instead. It really makes me wonder how different things would be. The biggest difference I always wonder- what if my mom was still here?

Would I be who I was now?

There are so many positives in my life that I kept forgetting exists because I was so keen on the negatives that were happening in my life. Yes. My mother died and that’s a horrible thing to go through, but I got through it. I made it. I came out a strong woman which I am so proud for. The biggest thing I can tell someone is be proud of yourself. Look at where you were and look at how far you’ve come! You made it! The grass IS greener on the other side you just have to hop that fence. You just have to make that move.

I’m trying not to be a hippy preacher here of good vibes, but maybe that’s what you need. Or maybe that’s what I need.

They say the advice you give someone else is the advice you need to hear; the advice you would give yourself. What advice would you tell your best friend if she/he was going through this? Put yourself in different shoes. Give yourself the advice you need.

Because hey, if I made it, maybe you can too.


My favorite band doing a cover of the greatest and most sad song:

And the original:

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For When The Lows Can’t Get Lower

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There are so many ways to fight depression. Every one fights it on their own way, but I can tell you some of the advice I’ve gotten over the years and what’s helped and what hasn’t.

  • Therapy

    I went to therapy for many years during her battle with cancer and for a long time after she died. I’ve bounced between many therapists. I did one-on-one therapy and group therapy. Each helped me in its own way. Each therapist had their own way of helping. Some were more tough love and some seemed more of an ironic mother figure. I learned that the best way for me was just to talk it out. Use them as a third party to vent and to cry to. I also didn’t just talk about my mother. I talked about all the crap that was going on in my life from school to boys to my family. Therapy really helped me get a lot of shit off my chest I didn’t even know I needed to talk about. When I did group therapy it was awkward at first to talk to a bunch of strangers, especially people my age about the things going on in my life, but it helped to understand that I wasn’t alone. People were going through their own stuff and dealing with depression just like me. It helped get multiple advices that I got to try and see what helped. I think one on one therapy and group therapy, a mix of going to both at once, was one of the best ways I got through this.

  • Medication

    I was an anti-depressants for almost a year. A lot of people seem to be scared to do this, seeing it as failing almost but it’s really just an extra push in the right direction. I personally used Cymbalta. I think when I was on my medication it really did help me. It seemed to even things out. There weren’t so many ups and downs or such insane ups and downs. I could live easier. It helped me focus more and not worry about being so depressed. I did feel happier. Yet medication may not be right for everyone. If you feel it could help you then talk to your therapist or a doctor. They will tell you what medication is right for you and they will help you figure out what’s best. I changed a lot of dosage levels until I found the perfect match. Medication is like dating. Know what you like and go for it.

  • Friends and Family

    Your friends and family will always be the best support group you have.  Your family will always have an understanding because they too lost someone they love. Your friends are always there to have a shoulder to cry on.

Dead Mothers Club

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Losing a parent can be is one of the most horrible things a kid can go through. There will forever be an empty spot in my heart longing for her to come back. I just want to sit her down and update her on everything she missed.

And boy she missed everything. She missed me going into high school, my first boyfriend, my first dance, my first kiss, my sweet 16, my high school graduation, me leaving to college; just everything I had wished she would be there for she wasn’t. I never got to ask her how to get the right guy’s attention, what she was like in high school, how to deal with my first heartbreak, or how to mend a broken friendship. I will forever miss these memories I never got to have with her, and the memories to come. She may not be here with me, but I’d like to believe she’s still…here.

Yet who says you can’t still talk to her? No matter what after life you believe in, I always found it very comforting to talk to her whether it was out loud or in my head. I still talk to her 7 years later.

Life goes on, but there will be times even years later, what you will still break down. Leave time to cry and be okay with not being okay.

Not only does talking to her help, but talking to my sister or other family members about her helps. Always keep the memories alive.

Remember that time when mom was losing her hair and she poofed it all up to look like a mad scientist! Oh remember that time when she went completely bald and she let us draw on her head with markers so we wouldn’t be scared of her baldness?

There are other ways to keep her around too. For example, I still use her blanket that a neighbor made her. Only keep a few things of their around. You don’t want your room to tun into a shrine. That’s more painful than anything.

Also remember to never hold on to a smell. The blanket only smelled liker her for a short time and that smell went away. Don’t let that memory rest completely on that smell because they will fade away, and it’ll hurt more.

Being apart of the dead mother club is one I never wanted to join, but perks of a club is there are more members! There are online support groups or in person ones depending on where you life. There are other people going through the same thng in different stages that can help you along this painful journy.

Always remember you are not alone.


Here’s a Slideshare about terminal illness to help give more information about the end

How Does She Do It?

It’s been a little over 7 years since my mom died. How in the world did it not consume me, you may ask? Well honestly, it did for a while. It was my whole life. She was my whole life.

There were many people in my life who were “impressed” with how I was handling it. Yet, nobody saw or heard me sobbing late at night, driving in my car, or really any time I was alone for more than 5 seconds. If there was no one to hold me, you can be sure as hell I was a mess.

There would be so many times I would be having a “good” day and be thinking I was making progress. Then one of her favorite songs would come on the radio and P!NK would send me into a tight curled up ball of tears. We had so many of her TV shows that we would watch together all cuddled up in her bed on Saturday morning. That show would have a commercial for the next season and it would hit like a bullet that she wouldn’t be there to watch it with me anymore. I had to learn to not dread the theme song to Ellen anymore but rather use it as a token of memory. I had to learn to celebrate her memories and use them to remember her by, and not have them hurt so much anymore. That was no way to cope.

It’s not like I had a choice in the matter anyways. You have to keep going because there is no other option. You don’t think you can cope until you have to. Life keeps going on whether you like it or not. The clock keeps ticking and you have to move along with it. You can’t shut the world out because you have to think the cliché “Is this what mom would want? WWJD (What would Jackie do)”

Even though it hurts, you have to force yourself to live either by making yourself go back to work, or going out with friends or family. You don’t have to do this all at once or right away; work at your own pace, but know eventually you have to move on.

Now don’t yell at me saying “how could I EVER just MOVE ON from my parent’s death!” I’m not saying put the memories and emotions into a little box and forget he/she ever existed. Instead it’s more of learning to live without them around anymore.

I don’t have some magic step-by-step program to help you cope, but I can sure give you some insight into how to make the pain less… painful.

For example, the biggest thing I did for my mom after she passed was plant a tree for her in my front yard. Actually, my dad did this as a surprise for my sister and I. In the fall, the leaves seemed to turn a shade of pink hence she died of breast cancer.

When we moved to Michigan from Illinois, it hurt moving away from her tree. The new owners of my home promised me sister and I that they would take care of our tree; knowing fully why it was planted. It still grows strong to this day.

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When were in Illinois we would decorate her tree every year on Mother’s Day, her birthday, and the anniversary of her death. It helped us celebrate her life besides visiting a grave. I think also the symbolism of a tree growing helped with the grieving process of seeing how much time passed since she died, and how much me and my sister grew along with the tree.

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The most recent picture of her tree, absolutely HUGE!

 


One of my favorite poems in the world. My mother loved roses, and even though I don’t believe in a higher power or anything, I’d like to think my mom is still around somewhere. My one wish would be to pick a bunch for her and put them in her arms from me.