Monday, January 9, 2012

'Fessing Up

I have a confession to make: For the last few months, I have been unhappy.

I don't mean the live-on-the-couch-eating-ice-cream-watching-sappy-movies way, but the way that sticks with you day in and day out. No, I haven't spent every second of the last few months crying or pouting or moping. The company of friends and family provides temporary relief but at the end of the day (every. single. day.) I feel listless and detached from the life I have outside of my home. I've had trouble sleeping through the night, waking up for hours in the middle of the night unable to shut my mind down enough to sleep. I haven't wanted to read books or write. Just last week my husband wanted to take me somewhere, anywhere I wanted, and my response was "nah."
That's when he knew something was wrong.

When Johnathan was diagnosed with cancer (not an excuse), I think it became a watershed moment for me. I've struggled with a lot of different things over the years but his illness put me over the edge. For the first time I went to my doctor and asked for help. I admitted that I wasn't strong enough to manage everything I was feeling on my own. He diagnosed me with Clinical Depression. He recommended some counselors and prescribed an antidepressant. I had made the decision in my mind to take the medication until Johnathan's prognosis improved.

He got better.

I didn't.

I still couldn't cope, but in my head I couldn't justify continuing medication for what I thought was something directly related to my husband's health, which had improved. So I stopped taking the medication. And then my job became very stressful and unpredictable, so I went back to the medication. Then my principal left. I thought: finally, I can live again.

But I can't.
I still can't cope. And I need help.

So I'm going back to my doctor because to be honest, depression has caused me physical pain for the last 3 months or so. I have also looked into more natural treatments and came across a plan to remove gluten (wheat) from one's diet. Many of the symptoms of gluten intolerance manifest as symptoms I already experience. Depression is one of them. Headaches, eczema, asthma symptoms, and other issues can also arise from the body's reaction to gluten.

Having that said, I'm slowly transitioning to a gluten-free diet. I have talked to some people and read a LOT of blogs about this kind of lifestyle. What I know is this: I want to feel better, plain and simple. If removing gluten from my diet can ease my physical symptoms, I hope that combining this with some medicinal support could really bring some improvement to my health.

This post is about me. This life is mine and it's the only one I get. I have to live it fully, and I cannot do that by preferring to sit at home and feeling low. I need to read, and write, and laugh and love.

I need to live.

This blog isn't necessarily making a transition to all about gluten-free living, but it will shift as my life shifts, which is what this blog was created for in the first place.

Living the dream.
Living my dream. Everyday.

Monday, January 2, 2012

2011 In Review

A day or two late, as usual. But hey, I'm back in the blogosphere because this is the time to make resolutions (also known as promises with really good intent that you usually don't keep), and so now I'm on the bandwagon, for now :) Anyway, better late than never, the 2011 Year In Review post.

11 Things to Remember about 2011
  1. Johnathan's 1 year follow up colonoscopy showed nothing! Woohoo, no cancer here!
  2. I completed and published my first edition of the WLHS yearbook as the adviser, and was recognized as Outstanding First Year Adviser at HJ.
  3. I had the opportunity to travel to New York City and see a Broadway production, Ground Zero, the Statue of Liberty, the Empire State Building, and so much more!
  4. I blogged every day during the month of March for Slice of Life month.
  5. We bought a Canon Rebel DSLR and I'm going to try my hand at photography!
  6. I read a LOT of books. Check out the To Be Read pile waiting on me now!
  7. I completed my add-on license in School Administration, qualifying me to pursue positions as Assistant Principal, etc.
  8. I attended a week-long workshop in beautiful Chapel Hill, NC as part of the National Endowment for the Humanities. I learned so much and had a wonderful time visiting my Alma Mater.
  9. More about books! I met Beth Revis, Victoria Schwab, Myra McEntire, Michelle Hodkin, John Green, Ellen Hopkins and David Levithan this year. Holy freakin' cow!!
  10. I completed my streak of seeing all the Harry Potter films in the theater and said goodbye, bittersweetly, to 10 magical years of my reading life.
  11. Johnathan and I celebrated our 4th year of marriage by attending a real live rock concert :D

2011 wasn't too shabby, and I'm looking forward to what 2012 is bringing: babies for many friends, a new part-time job teaching at the college level, a record setting fundraising year for our Relay for Life team, and so much more.

Wishing you the very best in 2012,