Intentional, purposeful, and mindful continue to appear in my research as to how to live a better life and become a better, stronger me for my family. As I continue to think about what these words mean to my family, I think of being truly present in my life in the pursuit for a better life for my family. We all live very busy, chaotic lives. Technology, although great, has become a constant distraction. It is a way that we invite our work, our friends, and our families into our lives virtually. This has its benefits. However, it means that we cannot truly walk away from our work or from the constant media distractions. Further, many parents work and the balance can be difficult. For me, I felt overwhelmed by all the incoming distractions and chaos in my life. Although I am in the room with my family, I am not present. I am looking at the dirty dishes, thinking about the laundry that needs washing, and about the project I need to complete a work. I feel like a failure every time I look around to see the house a hot mess. Why am I not able to keep up? How can I be a better mom/wife for my family?
Well, it always gets worse before it gets better. I fought for months in a tearful, anxious, overwhelmed state. This was greatly affecting my family and I did not like the person I was becoming. It felt hopeless and I felt like I failed nearly every moment of every day. Finally, I decided that I could no longer stay in this state and I made an appointment with my primary care provider. It is not easy to tell someone that you feel crazy all the time, you cry more than you would like to divulge, and that you feel desperate to find me again. Needless to say, I was diagnosed with postpartum depression/anxiety and placed on medication. So many emotions with this alone…Will they judge me? Does this look bad in my chart? Do I really need medication?
Let me tell you. It has been a long road and I know that I have not completely weathered this season in my life yet. Although with a lot of support from family, friends, and my healthcare team, I started to see this journey as an opportunity. It has allowed me to evaluate my life in a way that I probably would have. It is giving way to a rebirth.
In this season of change, I needed to start somewhere. I knew that the various definitions of intention, purposeful, and mindful living sounded like something that my family needed. A life I wanted to gift them and myself. The path is not straightforward and is a little overwhelming to even get started. So, where do you begin? Is this even possible when you feel so far away from the end result? Will this help me through my depression/anxiety?
I sat down and decided I needed to determine what I can control in my life to help guide me to our end goal. As I looked around, I determined that the messy house was a main cause to my stress and anxiety. Much of the time, it felt to me like a frat had come over, destroyed my home in a drunken rage, and left the mess for me to pick up. Okay, so maybe this is a slight over exaggeration and I may have an overactive imagination. But this is how living in the mess made me feel. It was overwhelming. When my space is cluttered, so is my brain. Let me tell you that is already a jumbled mess most days. So, this is where I start my journey. One room at a time, I vowed to work to de-clutter and to organize. This takes examining and inspecting the house. How does my family live? What do we need to find organization and simplicity? Where do I start?
So, I started with kitchen. This is the room in my house that allows me to nurture my family and needs to be maintained for the best us. I love to cook for my family and family dinners are VERY important to my husband and I. Again, I took to the internet and magazines to think about how I could do this. The inspiration grew and grew. My husband and I set a budget. I set a date on the calendar and gathered all of the supplies that I needed for this big opportunity for our family.
Stay tuned for the break down of my kitchen simplification on the road to intentional, purposeful, and mindful life!