Monday, June 20, 2016

I Didn't Send You Here To Fail

"Our Heavenly Father did not put us on the earth to fail, but to succeed gloriously!" —Richard G. Scott:

Challenged with parenthood one day, I threw myself onto my sons bed, cried, and just asked, "Why? Why am I even still here? Why don't You just make me die? I always just fail anyway. So why am I even still here?"
After a few seconds, I remembered these words spoken by the Lord through his servants, "I did not send you here to fail..." I understood it to mean that the Lord was giving me another chance to get it right. And another and another, etc... He didn't send me here to fail, so He must have sent me here to pass, succeed and win. So, He waits and helps and watches for us to succeed. So, what does that look like? That is my blessed opportunity to seek out, discover and define.

"Never forget that you came to earth as a child of the divine Father, with something of divinity in your very makeup. The Lord did not send you here to fail. He did not give you life to waste it. He bestowed upon you the gift of mortality that you might gain experience—positive, wonderful, purposeful experience—that will lead to life eternal. He has given you this glorious Church, His Church, to guide you and direct you, to give you opportunity for growth and experience, to teach you and lead you and encourage you, to bless you with eternal marriage, to seal upon you a covenant between you and Him that will make of you His chosen daughter, one upon whom He may look with love and with a desire to help. May God bless you richly and abundantly, my dear young friends, His wonderful daughters." ~ Gordon B. Hinckley

An image of a statue of a mother with children, with a quote by President Boyd K. Packer: “There are few things more powerful than the … prayers of a … mother.”

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Avenues of Recovery

Before there was modern medicine, there was natural medicine. But, with all the awesome studies and technology we have today, more and more evidence is coming up to support natural medicine. While there are many different avenues you could take when deciding on a medication or alternative, I would like to share insights I have gained on it. For many people Rx medication has been an answer to prayer. Personally, I have found natural alternatives to be an answer to my prayers. There are many who say that the natural way is just as effective or more, pure and better for the body. I would like to encourage you to do your own research on it.
Since most of us probably have access to a doctor who would encourage and prescribe medication for mood disorders (postpartum or not) I will leave that to them. I would like to present a side to healing that they may not mention so much, if at all, though.
Sometimes, depression comes because our bodies are lacking certain nutrients that support healthy body functions. I feel it is important to pay attention to fixing these deficiencies to treat the depression. Vitamin D3, calcium, magnesium, potassium, Omega 3,6 and 9 oils, essential fatty acids, B vitamins, vitamin E, natural progesterone cream, sleep, enough good, clean water and exercise can do wonders for a depressed soul. Journaling, meditating, praying, and doing art of any kind is also very therapeutic. Babysitters, counselors, a good friend or trusted family member, essential oils, EFT, foot zoning, iridology, rapid eye technology, yoga, energy work, herbs, craniosacral therapy, neurofeedback, and homeopathics are also excellent resources for recovering lost energy (emotional, spiritual, physical, or mental) and nutrients. Do not be afraid to use these, for in them, also, is God's hand. In fact these methods are, to me, a lot closer to what God would do himself if he were here. Many practitioners of these therapies know that it is what God wants them to be doing right now to help serve their fellow men. You can do a lot of these while on medication too! There is much beauty in these. Love is the answer. Sometimes you don't find enough or give enough love if your only method of treatment is the Dr.'s Rx.
Here is the insight I gained from my PP experience with the twins.
When I had PPD with the twins, I was very fortunate to run into a kind lady who shared with me that she had also been through PPD a few years back and that a solution that worked for her was Vitex (chaste tree fruit) and Sepia (a homeopathic remedy). I had taken Sepia before with good results, but had tried it a bit this time with not as good of results as before. So I tried the Vitex. The morning after I took it, I felt as if I had just woken up from a nightmare - not freaked out, but calm and wondering about the nightmare of yesterday's life. Another way to describe it, though, is that instead of climbing the mountain, I felt like I was on top of it. In some ways it bothered me, because I was so used to the climb. In some ways I like the climb. It brings satisfaction. So, I backed off of it for a few days, and started feeling "normal" again, or, like I was climbing again, but with a clearer mind and a walking stick. I took it again when I felt like I was hiking without a friend and in the dark. I experimented with how much to take and how often to take it. I was so grateful for something natural to take. I really did need something extra. This herb contains progesterone which hormone can be deficient in postpartum women.
While we acknowledge the HAND of God in all things, there is no substitute for the armour of God. Medicine is not truth, righteousness, nor the preparation of the gospel of peace. It is not a shield of faith and it is not the means whereby salvation cometh. It is not the word of God and it can't substitute for prayer. Medication may help me out of a hole temporarily, but it is the Lord that helps me out of the holes of not forgiving myself, the holes of self degradation, of not accepting the whole gift of the atonement, and basically, the holes of spiritual debt. In a true emergency, are we prepared with a supply of the armour of God when there is no medication to take?
Remember the wonderful good news of the gospel in all of this and pray that God will Guide you to the choice that will TRULY heal your mental challenge AND bring you closer to Him. I testify that He cares about you and all the details of your life! We really can trust in Him.
Here is a little more info about some of the above mentioned therapies.
*Essential oils can be more therapeutic than the plants they come from because, not only are they more concentrated, but they are in oil form and can absorb right into the largest organ of the body (the skin). They have constituents and properties that cleanse and detoxify. They can be inhaled which affects the limbic part of the brain. This is where many of our emotions emanate from, including fear, anxiety, and depression. Do a Google search on how essential oils work to find out more! Citrus oils are great for depression. Rose is a very high frequency oil that can help as well. But sometimes we need more grounding oils like vetiver or cedar wood. Frankincense can be one that brings courage to the discouraged and is an excellent brain oil. Geranium is also great. Many companies have blends of essential oils that are specifically blended for lifting spirits and balancing hormones. Contact me or someone you know who is into essential oils to find out more.
*EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) is a system of tapping on our body's energy meridians while repeating positive affirmations. This is a very simple and way of describing it. I have tried this several times and experienced great results. It can help with problems like mood disorders, trapped emotions, and bad habits and works for many to provide relief from symptoms of dis-ease.
*Foot Zoning is a way of balancing the body systems and getting/keeping the body in homeostasis using the receptor points on the feet that correlate to different parts of the body. It is very relaxing and can be effective and helpful in overcoming mood disorders. The key to why foot zoning works for postpartum mental challenges is the "balancing". Mood disorders are mostly about being out of balance in one area or another.
*Rapid Eye Technology works with communication at the cellular level that has been and is assimilated through REM sleep.
*Iridology is a system of reading the eye to see what parts or systems of the body are experiencing health, weakness, or stress. The practitioner will then usually use muscle testing to determine what nutrient the body needs in order to restore the body to optimal health.
*Yoga is probably the one most of us have heard of more than the others. Widely accepted now, it helps the body, mind and soul by promoting and facilitating meditation while maneuvering the body in very helpful stretches and moves. The act of involving the body with the meditation process increases the effectiveness of both. Yoga is big on breathing correctly throughout the exercises which, of course, oxygenates, helping all body systems get into a better standing.
*Energy Work is a broad term that can be encompassed in many alternative ways of recovering from stress. Some practitioners call themselves just plain "energy workers". They will likely be very in tune with your spirit and hopefully in tune with the spirit of the Lord as well, and use that communication to help them understand what you need in order to overcome whatever it is you are seeing them for (or maybe something that you didn't know you were seeing them for). Many energy workers are also trained in 'methods' of energy therapy like Reiki, muscle testing, Simply Healed Spirit Code, Emotion Code, etc... and some combine it with foot zoning, EFT, etc... Energy work is a VERY effective way to accept the good that is waiting to step into your life.
*Herbs are so awesome! Do a search on herbs in the scriptures or on the internet and find a wealth of information! They have been used for thousands of years to alleviate all kinds of discomfort or ailments. This is actually how medicine came about in the first place. They figured out that a certain herb fixed this problem or that, and then they decided to try to find out why. What nutrient or property or constituent was it that healed that ailment anyway? Then they isolated it and put it in a pill. The trouble with doing this is that it caused more side affects than the whole herb did in the first place. So there are a lot of people who have chosen herbs over prescribed medication. As with the others, there is so much more to find out about herbs! Look into them! They are so worth it!
*Cranial sacral therapy. Spinal fluid ebbs and flows throughout the membrane around the brain and the spinal cord, and therefore affects the whole nervous system. This therapy is very gentle, emotional, and beautiful as the therapist moves gently on the skull and spine areas as well as other areas affected by the spinal fluid that may need extra help. There are many success stories with craniosacral therapy. Search out more info online.
*Neurofeedback is a really awesome way for the brain to see itself through the technoligy of EEG and feeding the results back through a movie the patient watches. The brain can see if it is working top notch or not and fixes itself. New neuropathways litterally are created in the process and the brain is able to handle more and work through things it wasn't able to previously. Considering the fact that depression is a neurological disorder, this is wonderful technology and therapy for PPMD. Here is a link for more info. And here is another.
*Homeopathics are the energy of certain plants. The idea behind homeopathy is that you take a certain plant that, when eaten, causes the symptoms that you have, and dilute it's properties down to where it's basically just the energy of the plant left in the water. (This is why homeopathics are so cheap.) The body will recognize it as something to fight off and rid your body of the symptoms that the plant would cause if it were to be taken in heavier concentrations. To read more about homeopathic therapies, click here.
And lastly...
*Dietary Therapy. Some things you can add to help take away your symptoms. Other things you will need to subtract from your diet. See my previous blog post about this.

Did I miss any? Comment below with what helps in your experience.

From the Outside Looking In: One Perspective

I see her seeing everything that is wrong.
I see her not forgiving herself or others.
I see her struggling to stay afloat and feeling helpless.
I see that she needs help but can't seem to help her.
I feel helpless as well.
What can I do?
What can I say?
She is depressed and I can't seem to get her out of it.
She seems to rattle on about one burden to the next.
I know her burden is great, but I have my own work...
She cries and blames me for things I had no idea I did wrong.
She thinks I don't love her.
Do I? This isn't the person I thought I married.
She makes a very big deal out of the smallest things.
Does she even see me here?
I know this is important to her.
I see her begging for help, but don't know how to help her.
Even when helped, it only makes it go away for a short time.
My loved one is hurting inside, but how do I tell her she needs help?
What if she rejects the help?
How CAN I help?
I must help her.
I must keep on trying and persevering.
She will get through this, but WE need help...

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Heavenly Feelings in a Telestial World

Having and nurturing/nursing a baby is a heavenly thing. Some have calm and peaceful birth experiences. Some have exciting, loud, ecstatic birth experiences. Some have traumatic birth experiences. But in any of these cases, a new, valuable, vulnerable, and infinitely divine child has been birthed. And you are his mother. (Or hers)
What a beautiful responsibility! What a beautiful and loving job! What a wonderful and exhilarating experience this is and/or can be!!!
And then you go home from the hospital and the sun comes up at 7 am and goes down at 8 pm. And the whole rest of the world goes on living their every day lives, while you are wondering how you are going to transition this beautiful and special spirit from heaven to Earth. Midnight and early morning feedings are not what the rest of the world is doing. Training and loving young ones is not something the world is accustomed to teaching with preciseness or with instructions particular to your baby/situation.
Sometimes, it's as simple as trying to live in the same world you were used to AND take care of heaven's precious gifts and real human beings that are totally dependent on you - that brings you to a place of being depressed.
Can one live in the same world as "everybody else" or the one she has grown accustomed to and still be there for that sweet little baby? Anything is possible with God, but is that what God is asking of us? That is up to us to find out.
I have experienced this. If this is you as well, here are some scriptures and articles that may be of comfort or help to you.
Matthew 25:35 For I was an hungred, and ye gave me meat: I was thirsty, and ye gave me drink: I was a stranger, and ye took me in:
 36 Naked, and ye clothed me: I was sick, and ye visitedme: I was in prison, and ye came unto me. 37 Then shall the righteous answer him, saying, Lord, when saw we thee an hungred, and fed thee? or thirsty, and gave thee drink? 38 When saw we thee a stranger, and took thee in? or naked, and clothed thee? 39 Or when saw we thee sick, or in prison, and came unto thee? 40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of theleast of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.
Matthew 6:24 No man can serve two masters: for either he will hatethe one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
Mothers Who Know - Julie B. Beck

Friday, August 08, 2014

Hinting At a Sleep Chapter

I'm going through postpartum depression for the eighth time. However, this time I am very greatly benefiting from my past blog posts. I found that Satan has tried the same tricks on me over and over and over again. But this time I've had my blog posts to remind me that it's happening. They have also helped me to remember the lessons that I've learned in the past and to apply them to my life right now. I've been wanting to write a sleep chapter for a long time (because I know that sleep disturbances and lack of sleep can cause PPD), so I have done some research on how sleep, or the lack of sleep, affects postpartum mood disorders. It has been quite intriguing. Sleep disturbances and deprivation cause and aggravate the already delicate balance of Estrogen to Progesterone, as well as the thyroid hormones and ones that are associated with satiety and growth. I knew how important sleep was before, but I'm finding out that perhaps it's even a little more important then I realized. But now as well as in times past, I am left with the question, "so, how do I get more sleep?"
Lessons learned: getting enough sleep usually takes more sacrifice, prioritizing and prayers then I want to, but it is always worth it when I put forth the effort to do a bedtime routine (started early), calm down before bed, and don't get too stressed out during the night. It's important to wake up with a prayer in my heart, praying for the sleep that I got to be enough sleep for the day.
Some great news about the postpartum experience this time is that because of the new perspectives and knowledge that I have gained, through study, faith, journaling, temple attendance, prayer and blogging, I have fewer issues with taking supplements for hormone balancing. The trouble before, and I suppose with many other experiences, is that I (we) get into a place with the hormone imbalance where it is so easy for us to hear Satan's voice. We are also in a weakened state physically, and mentally because of the sleep deprivation, that we don't feel strong enough to withstand the fiery darts of Satan. And, the last things he is going to tell us to do is to believe in Jesus Christ, think with common sense, and fix the hormone imbalance, and get more sleep, exercise, water, resist junk food, eat great foods, etc.… so we run into the very discouraging thoughts, "I am so evil, and I never seem to get anything right... I thought I worked through this yesterday.... Why can't I just get over it?" We may think that we have caused our feelings of unworthiness by our actions or lack of, and so deserve to be feeling this way, so we don't consider medication or supplements to be something that would help us.
Ignoring anything that IS a real problem can turn into a bigger problem though, so here is a suggestion on how to take medication or supplements and prevent the feeling or thought that you are not just frosting coating your problems. Before you get on the hormone balancer, write down your mental problems that you can't seem to solve while not on the meds/supplements. Include in-law issues, feeding problems, health problems, issues with your husband, anger issues, problems with children, with society, testimony, house work, money, etc... Then after going on the meds/supplements, you will hopefully start feeling better quickly, but after a week or two, evaluate your problem list, praying first to know which problems you still need to deal with, and which one to start with. Create a journal entry (or several) about this, your experience, the problems you need to address and how you will address them. Remember that God is on your side as well as on the side of everyone you are having problems with. He loves us all more deeply than we can understand.

Monday, March 31, 2014

The Power of Words: 40 Things To Say To A Woman Who Has Had A Baby Within The Past Year

The energy of your words can make all the difference in a woman's postpartum experience. It is my opinion that women know exactly what they are supposed to do, just maybe not how to do it all right now. Unless they ask you for advice, they probably need more cheering on and understanding than anything else; words of encouragement and just plain help. Satan tells childbearing women so many silly lies, and if the body is weakened in any way, it makes it more difficult to fight against those lies. Some of these things are in direct contradiction to those lies that are so common among these women. (Honestly, this is a list I made in an effort to record what things I would want to hear in the postpartum year, when I was recently recovered from my last PPD experience. If you have any to add please leave a comment :)
1. You are a glorious person!
2. Thank you!
3. I love to see you using your power for good!
4. You radiate light with your laughter and smiles!
5. What can I do to help you?
6. You are an awesome warrior!
7. Let go of the bad.
8. God is with you.
9.  Say nothing - just give hugs.
10. Treasure the good.
11. I love the way you...
12. Wow! Way to speak truth!
13. You always seem to be doing such awesome things with your life!
14. Wow! What faith you have!
15. Just hold on a little longer.
16. You have more power than you realize!
17. When you meet resistance, you really push through it!
18. I love the way you allow yourself to feel joy even when things aren't perfect!
19. Motherhood is radiance!
20. Mothers are beautiful!
21. Nurse away and love every minute of it!
22. Can I do the dishes for you?
23. Can I read your kids a book?
24. Do you need a foot rub?
25. Would it be okay if I rubbed your scalp?
26. I love you!
27. Can we do lunch sometime?
28. I brought you some soup and bread!
29. Take charge. You' da woman!
30. Being the Mom is such a great blessing.
31. You can do it!
32. Would you like me to teach you how to...
33. You are beautiful!
34. What do you want?
35. Is there something you need help with?
36. What do you need?
37. You are doing a great job at being the best you!
38. You are doing it!
39. Wow! You have so many awesome righteous desires!
40. You're making a big difference with every little thing you do!

Monday, January 13, 2014

The Past

There is something about our pasts that seems to bind us somehow - in good ways and bad. Much of my postpartum depression has come from me holding on to the past too much. There were wrongs that I felt never had been righted. There were intimidation issues which came from past experiences. There were hurts that I had not healed from. All of these things would tend to come to the surface and "haunt" my postpartum experiences more often than not. Most the time, when I finally learned to let go of something that was haunting me from my past - or finally worked through it enough that I felt I could let it go, I healed from my postpartum depression as well.
Recently I have been thinking about letting go of past hurts and moving on from where I am at right now. I know that I need to allow healing. I know that to let go of that thing in the past would mean that something else would take it's place. I am daring to hope that the thing that takes its place will be good. Or shall I say God. If I let go of the past (bad), I am allowing myself to move closer to God. There is a motto in my church ... CTR (choose the right). The right side of our bodies represents the future. "Choose the right" recently took on another meaning to me, which is choose the future. Don't focus on the past, focus on choosing things that will make your future brighter. Choose things that will make your today shine bright.
A good counselor can help you heal from past hurts, right past wrongs, and let go of the bad. I have said it before, and I'll say it again. I am thankful for and testify of the "wonderful counselor" Jesus Christ who takes away my sins, who has born my greifs and carried my sorrows, so that I do not need to.

Saturday, January 04, 2014

Hope Is Never Lost

In hopes of reviving my own hopes, I am writing this post about hope never being lost.
I thought of this phrase after wondering how to get rid of the "giving up" feeling I have been having lately. This is not just the passing, "Oh it's no use..." statement that we sometimes give when we are going about our day sometimes, as a figure of speech or a tiny giving up, but this is  a feeling of really believing that it is no use to even try to do much at all. Just now as I was writing that, though, the phrase "gird up your loins, fresh courage take, our God will never us forsake" came into my mind. Earlier when I was having the utter giving up feelings, I thought about the remedies that might be out there for this negative emotion and so I was thinking of the opposite - hope - the belief that your good efforts WILL pay off some day, hopefully in the not-so-distant future. Then the voice of Jeffery R Holland came into my mind. "Hope is never lost!" He gave a great talk  last conference about how to make it through a mental illness - mainly deep depression. It was a beautiful talk and I am glad that those words came into my head because the feeling I got from the Holy Ghost entered my heart when I thought of those words. I am especially glad that I blogged about them just now, because I needed to hear the other words too about girding up my loins!
Be of good cheer. (John 16:33
Be strong and of a good courage! (Joshua 1:6
Come unto me all ye  who labor and are heavy laden and I will give you rest. (Matthew 11:28

God bless you, help you, and keep you!