It pains me to write the title and copy in this blog post because the fall is MY time of year. From football to food to family and yes, my birthday, I’ve always had a special place for the fall in my heart and soul. But here’s the thing: I haven’t felt like myself the past few weeks. And while I can sit here and point my finger at things like relationship changes, school happenings, work schedules, etc. I can’t negate the fact that my mood and sense of self has been getting worse, not better. I’m doing all the things I should be doing: recovery, exercise, eating well, sleep. Until I realize I wasn’t doing any of those things AT ALL this past week. Except recovery- which yes, is still a HUGE positive.
I found myself at meetings sobbing, calling my sponsor, sobbing, sleeping poorly, not getting out of bed, and stomaching a few Sanders chocolate caramels before bed. Oh and, I cried to a few Mom friends at the park too. While it’s easy to sit here and say, “well yeah Katie, go figure, you’ve had a lot going on this past year and it’s finally catching up with you!” I think there’s validity to that. But there’s also a lot of power and validity in verbalizing this: I struggle with seasonal depression.
I remember being a freshman at Michigan State University and not being able to get out of bed. Skipping class. And ultimately getting boosts of serotonin from drinking, binging and purging, and drinking some more. Eeek! Gross. Fast forward to the past few years and between having babies and struggling with my alcohol use, it’s no wonder my body hasn’t been able to regulate chemicals and hormones. Now that I finally feel like this year I’m on a solid path to recovery, this seasonal change hit me like a bus. I was not prepared. I was not taking my medication. I was headed down a slippery emotional slope. I knew I had to do something.
So, I did what I do best: I TALKED. I talked to my parents. To my sponsor. To friends in recovery. To my therapist. To my family doctor. And yes, to the kids. Because Mommy’s been really sad and wants to get better. And knows there are tools to help her get that way.
So, here’s my plan of action:
- I’m back on my medications and vitamin regimen
- I’m at my parents with the kids for the week for extra support
- I’m letting those close to me know my feelings and/or how they can support me
- I’m considering a shower, a walk, or a big bowl of spaghetti a win
I’m being honest with you guys. Because many of you have been with me from the start of my post-partum blues, alcoholism, and now separation. Thanks for making this a no-judgment zone. From one Mom hanging in there to another: You’ve got a friend in me. Even when it takes a few hours or days for me to reply. Just know I’m in your corner like you’ve always been in mine!