So I have shared a little bit with you about my nerves facing life in the village again after the anxiety & depression that plagued me last year.  The truth is, every time I think about it, I feel a pang of panic.  But I have been using the tools gained in therapy to calm my fears, stay in the moment, and remember to take it a day at a time.

With these concerns fresh in my mind as I began our journey toward Marshall, 
my sister sent me this pin:

It meant so much to hear her say that.  It made me feel proud of myself.  Sure, I have faced some trials, but none of them have brought me to my knees.  As I head into this year I am going to work hard to take pride in how far I have come, and have faith in how far I can go.


Saturday I had a full-on panic attack on the way to the beach.  We had stopped to take the boys to the bathroom when I experienced a sudden dizziness that made the room feel like it was spinning.  I took  few deep breaths, ran my hands under the cold faucet and took a few sips of my water bottle.  By the time we were back in the car, I felt better, but my heart was still pounding uncontrollably.  I kept up the positive self talk, "You're okay. You're safe.  Just keep breathing.  This will pass."  It worked, and by the time we saw my grandparents, I had forgotten I'd even been worked up.  It was the first panic attack of that severity that I've faced (and conquered) without medication.  It felt really good.


It feels really good to have come so far, but I also know all too well how easy it is to backslide.  I know how important it is to have support.  And so I want to ask you a favor. 

When you think of me, reach out.

Call me.
Message me.
Text me.
Write me a letter.

Hearing from people (as I have today during our travels) gives me strength.
Your love, support & friendship means the world to me.



Anonymous said...

You are doing amazing things. I'm a long-time reader. I have raised my kids. You are doing a great job. It is anxiety provoking leaving the ones we love just to go a state or two away, your emotions are justified. Keep on doing as you are. You are awesome.

Marilynn Raatz said...

I will! I am so proud of you!

Alyson Steiner said...

I think you're amazing! Love reading about and seeing your strength! Safe travels getting all the way home!

Anonymous said...

Maybe it would help if your twins attended your husband's school? That way you would have a little more time to yourself in which you can take care of your own mental health and needs. It seems to me that one of the hardships of living there is that not only are you far away from friends and family, but you also are never alone or in solitude. You can't take a long walk by yourself to clear your head, etc.

If the twins went to school, you could still supplement their education, and teach Wyatt, but you might have more time to meet your own needs.

Tabitha Studer said...

Shelly! Happy Homecoming! I am excited for you to start a new year back in the bush. I always think of us as similar and as much as I love the whirl and blur of summer and traveling/events everyday - there is something refreshing about stepping back into routine and 'regular' life. I hope you are feeling the same way too:) I'm sending my love up your way - You ARE unstoppable and inspirational and one of my favorite blog friends <3 xxoxo