Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal Bars

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In keeping with stereotypes, I am someone who is obsessed with anything pumpkin. Now that it’s a socially acceptable time of year to express this obsession I can finally pull those cans of pumpkin out of my pantry and put them to work.

Riddle me this. Why do we only have pumpkin pie once a year?

This is a travesty. I do not think I am in the minority when I say that the best part of Thanksgiving dinner is the pumpkin pie. In our house, there is rarely any left over for the next day. You better savor that small piece that you do your best to squeeze in after those seconds of mashed potatoes (and let’s not discuss all the gravy you poured on them).

Today I take a stand against the limitations of pumpkin pie to the Thanksgiving holiday. Today I stand up and declare that we eat pumpkin pie whenever we want! LET US EAT PUMPKIN PIE! Or at the very least, we should eat my Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal Bars.

These little morsels of goodness taste like a piece of pumpkin pie, but almost better. The oatmeal, brown sugar and butter crust is better than a traditional pie crust because it is crumbly and provides the perfect base for the pumpkin mixture. The pie like filling has cream cheese in it. Hello! I didn’t think pumpkin pie could be more delicious until this moment. Then the butterscotch chips add the perfect finish to the top.

Trust me, you are going to want to finish off the whole pan of these, so bring your self control to the kitchen and go bake these up!

Pumpkin Pie Oatmeal Bars Recipe

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Ingredients

Crust and Topping 

  • 1 1/3 cup flour
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 3/4 cup of butter, cold
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats, uncooked

Filling 

  • 1 can of pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 3 eggs
  • 8 ounces of cream cheese, softened
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 cup butterscotch chips
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
  2. Prepare a 13 x 9 baking dish by lining it in aluminium foil (I recommend the non-stick type) and spraying it with cooking spray. Allow the foil to fold over the rim so you can easily pick up the bars for cutting later.
  3. To make the crust and topping combine flour, sugar and brown sugar. Then cut in cold butter with a pastry blender or fork and knife. The mixture will be crumbly and have little pockets of butter (this makes for a delicious crust).
  4. Mix in oats and then reserve 1 cup of the mixture for the topping.
  5. Press remaining mixture into the bottom of your pan to create the crust.
  6. Mix together the pumpkin, cream cheese, sugar, eggs, vanilla and pumpkin pie spice until smooth.
  7. Pour mixture over the crust and then sprinkle remaining crust mixture on top.
  8. Sprinkle butterscotch chips over the top.
  9. Bake for 30-35 minutes.
  10. Allow dish to cool before cutting. You can wait about 10-15 minutes and lift the dish out by the foil or wait until it is completely cooled.
  11. Top with a dollop of whipped cream and enjoy!

Just like a pumpkin pie, I loved this bar hot and cold. You could personalize this dish by adding chocolate chips to the top or maybe mixing a little bourbon into the filling. Whatever you do, enjoy this variation of pumpkin pie as much as you want before the season is over!

 

My Journey with Prescription Drugs and Depression

Untitled design (4)Over the past ninety days, I have been on a path to healing. For me, the best way to treat depression is to find the right chemical balance in my brain and to work through the way that it impacts my thoughts.

I have a therapist that helps me tackle my thoughts. She has used cognitive behavioral therapy to help me learn that I am not controlled by my thoughts, but that I have the power to control them. She has also taught me to learn my symptoms of depression and when it is time to let medication help me fight the battle.

If you can find a medication that treats your symptoms and does not have side effects, you have hit the jackpot. The problem is that the road to finding this pot of gold is one of the hardest you will go on. Doctors will say there is a method to the medication that they prescribe to treat different symptoms that you may have, but from my experience it is a very hard game of trial and error, with the biggest risk at stake, your life.

The truth is that as with any drug each of our bodies will react differently and because the brain is the last major organ that science has researched, we still don’t know how to find the right drug for each patient. The only way to find out if it will work, is through test and .

It can take up to 3-4 weeks to see if a drug is working, which means that you continue to suffer from depression as you wait to see if this will be the magical combination. Even more so, typically as you wait to see if the drug is working, you suffer from side effects. On one medication I suffered extreme mood swings, irrational feelings of rage that made me violent (you can imagine this made me very popular with friends and family). When a drug doesn’t work, you have to start all over again…before you know it, depression has eaten away at another 2-3 months of your life.  It took me three rounds of trial and error drugs before I found one that worked for me the first time.

These are some of the medications that I have tried over the years:

  • Pristique
  • Lexapro
  • Wellbutrin
  • Effexor
  • Xanax

After this episode of depression I was lucky and my psychiatrist was able to hit the nail on the head with my new medication. My current cocktail is Lamictal and L-methylfolate (prescription folic acid) and I have been so pleased with the results. I noticed the drugs working within 5 days of starting the medication and the side effects have been very minimal. (I am still working to get off the previous drug, Effexor, but that is a whole other story.)

While I have transitioned into a new job, I have been in that period of time where you are waiting for new health insurance to start and I had to make a decision which medications I could afford this month. I stopped taking the L-methylfolate because it was the more expensive of the two and I thought since it was more of a natural supplement I wouldn’t notice the difference. Man was I wrong! The Lamictal just doesn’t work as well without it’s friend L-methylfolate. I have not fallen into a severe depression, but I can definitely feel the difference in my mood, energy level and motivation. It is kind of crazy to see what a difference it has made removing one part of the cocktail.  I am certainly looking forward to October 1st when my new insurance kicks in and I can get back to feeling 100%!

Looks like I got lucky hit the jackpot on my medications this time around. Now my fingers are crossed that the drugs keep working and eventually I won’t need them at all.

 

 

How I Changed My Life

I can’t tell anyone how they can put change into motion in their lives, but I can share how I made it happen in mine.

When I was depressed my relationships with friends and family, my financial obligations, and my health had completely fallen to the wayside. Depression steals any energy that you have, so there is no energy left to take care of yourself and your life. I put what little energy I could into doing my best at work, so everything else outside of that fell to pieces.

I would come home from work and would be so exhausted and anxious to do anything. It would take hours to relax and release the tension from acting like I was fine all day, while trying to ignore the constant soundtrack in my head repeating how worthless I was. Once I was able to relax, all I wanted to do was sleep, then I would toss and turn all night and once the alarm went off in the morning, it would take an act of God to pull myself out of bed. I was lucky if I made it to work on time. I was even more lucky if I had time to get a shower and even more lucky if I had the time to walk my dog. I would then go through the motions at work, doing my best to cover up my depression and still trying to perform so I can advance in my career. The only way I could survive was to just keep repeating this same cycle, until the morning when I finally broke.

I realized that I was never going to be able to fix what was wrong until I stopped the cycle and took care of myself.  I drove home (after crying in my office’s parking lot) and was desperate to figure out what to do next. There is no how to guide on putting your life back together when you are depressed.The first step is to call a professional, but while you are waiting for that appointment, what are you supposed to do?

I was so overwhelmed that the only thing I could think of was to write it all down. I just started writing and every worry that had been plaguing me, everything that I was currently failing at and wanted to improve spilled out and filled the pages.

Here is what I wrote down that day…

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(Yes, I happened to have massive sticky poster board on hand.)

I am a little nervous showing this list to the world, but it feels good to be completely authentic about my experience. At the time it was every one of my deepest and darkest concerns that were plaguing me and I was embarrassed of them. Showing that I had goals like “Shower Daily” and “Become Financially Literate” aren’t easy skeletons to let out of the closet.

But the one that made me feel the most insecure was “Find someone to share experiences with – Stop being lonely”. Fact is that I am single and feel lonely sometimes, but I knew there was no way I was going to meet someone while I was depressed. If I didn’t like myself, how could I expect anyone to like me?

As I reviewed the list, I realized that I wasn’t desperate to just treat my depression, but I that I needed to change my life.

The first step I took was to get back to basics and to give myself something that I could accomplish. For the first couple days my goals were to do three things and three things only.

  1. Sleep
  2. Eat Well
  3. Exercise

These might sound so simple to you, but it was the first step to reset my life and stop the cycle that I was in. I knew there was no way that I could tackle everything on my list at once, but knowing that I had written them down allowed me to let them go and take them step by step, starting with step one.

There was one more thing that I had to take care during those first few days, I needed to get an appointment with a psychiatrist. Sounds simple, but my old psychiatrist had a 10 week waiting list and I didn’t have 10 weeks to give up of my life. So I took to the phone book and started dialing and finally found a doctor that would see me in 2 weeks. There was finally a light at the end of the tunnel.

While I waited to see my psychiatrist, I took baby steps and gave myself one new goal that I could achieve per day. Once I started achieving one goal, it empowered me to tackle another and by the time my appointment with my psychiatrist arrived, I was starting to feel like I was in control of my life again. The depression was still there, but without the pressures of work and keeping up the appearance that everything was just dandy, I was able to keep going.

My psychiatrist started me on new medication immediately and I started to see a change within 5-7 days. The better I felt, the more I wanted to tackle and I am happy to say that here is what my list looks like today…

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I was able to make some major changes in my life, including finding a new job and finding a medicine to treat the depression. I don’t know if it was timing or if it was my life re-boot that put the changes into motion or some combination of the two, but I couldn’t be more grateful.

Just because there is a check by the task doesn’t mean I am done with it. Many of the tasks on my list are ones that I will work at every single day, like “Be a good daughter” and “be nice to myself”. These aren’t one time tasks, but habits that you have to work at every day.

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I still have the list posted in my family room. It stays front and center (right next to the TV so I really can’t ignore it) and I am constantly reminded of where I have been, where I want to be and how I am going to get there.

If you want to make a change in your life, maybe you should try starting with a list. You never know what can happen until you give yourself a place to start.

My Favorite Beauty YouTubers

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I have been in a love affair with several women (and one man) for about a year now. I am not ashamed to admit it. I am kind of obsessed with them. When they post, I watch. When they say they love something, I buy it. They have turned me into a cosmetics addict and I ain’t mad about it.  They are my favorite Beauty YouTubers.

For most women, makeup is a necessary evil. You look for a product to solve a problem, it works and then you move on. For some, makeup is an art, it s a craft but it is a live art that is forever changing. Most importantly, makeup is fun! I am in no means an expert. I still have days where I look in the mirror and think “what did I do?”, but I am far more educated about products and the process than I was a year ago.

Now that I have gotten the hang of a few makeup tricks I can’t tell you how many people tell me they want me to teach them. I always recommend they go right to wear I started, YouTube.  You can learn anything you want on YouTube. There are so many people creating content and sharing their knowledge, opinions, and entertaining videos. I found tons of YouTubers creating videos about makeup and beauty and I find myself looking forward to their video postings, just as much as I look forward to my favorite TV shows.

Whether you want to learn from a tried and true expert or a someone who is self-taught, there is a YouTuber out there for you. They share a wealth of knowledge, experience and opinions that can help any novice or pro.

Here are some disclaimers that you should know about YouTubers:

  • They are compensated by YouTube. The number of Subscribers, Views, Likes and Comments on their videos increases their value for ads that are served on their videos.
  • They can be compensated by brands to promote their products. Most YouTubers will disclaim that they are being compensated from a brand for a product and will claim that this is still their honest opinion, take this with a grain of salt and judge for yourself.
  • They can be compensated by brands for sales that are made through affiliate links in their profiles. If there is a link or discount code in their profile for a company, assume they are getting paid per click or paid per sale.

Jaclyn Hill 

Jacyln Hill is where it all started for me. I watcher her “Flawless Face” video and realized that I had no idea what I was doing with my makeup and immediately wanted to learn more. Jaclyn is so likeable and her techniques are easy to follow. She is a former MAC make up artist, but she also has experience with a variety of products.

I trust that when she recommends a product, it is not from endorsement or compensation. I must not be the only one because her recommendations are powerful, when she says that she loves an eye shadow, it sells out immediately.

I can’t tell you how much I have learned from her videos, she is definitely my all time favorite.

Zoella 

Zoe is a British YouTuber and I just think she is as cute as a button. She is extremely popular in England and she loves beauty products (rumor is she has a beauty line launching soon). She makes it clear that she is no expert, but she shares her tips and tricks and has an effortless style.  Her makeup style is natural, but flawless and effortless. She does a mix of makeup and hair tutorials, which are usually easy to follow and execute.

Her channel is not exclusively beauty videos. She has a variety of entertaining content and she tackles her battle with anxiety, which I love!  I also find it fascinating to watch this young entrepreneur as she builds her brand and business.

Plus, I love it when she uses British slang like “plaits” (braids), blusher (blush), and “cuddles” (hugs).

Tati 

Tati aka Glam Life Guru posts content daily and shares a mixture of drugstore and high end make up tutorials. Her tips and tricks are really easy to execute and she loves to find a good bargain product.

GossMakeUpArtist

This Aussie is a relative genius when it comes to makeup application. Wayne Goss is a well know makeup artist and he has recently come out with his own line of brushes. One of his videos about contouring like Kim Kardashian has over 7 million views! His videos are quick and easy tips. He also tackles the basics in detail, like how to apply concealer, how to contour and how to apply foundation.

MissGlamorazzi 

I have a little bit of a love/hate relationship with Ingrid aka Miss Galmorazzi. She is cute, bubbly and really fun to watch. She posts an equal mix of beauty and lifestyle videos, including a few of her favorite healthy recipes. I drooled over her sense of style in home decor when she posted her apartment tour video. My only problem with Ingrid is that she has started to gain big brand sponsorships (like Cover Girl) and she doesn’t clearly disclose when an opinion is her own or influenced by her paycheck. Regardless, she is entertaining to watch and has great tutorials.

MakeUpByTiffanyD

Tiffany is about as real as it gets.  She has a bit of a champagne taste when it comes to makeup and skincare, but she knows what she likes and more importantly, what works. Tiffany is very knowledgable about the ingredients in products and typically only recommends products that she feels are safe.  I love the looks that she puts together, they are classic and easy to replicate.

 

If you have ever been frustrated trying to find a concealer that works or have never been able to master the perfect winged eye liner, I recommend you head over to YouTube and you will be surprised by what you can learn.

Do you have any favorite YouTubers? I would love to add some more favorites to my subscriptions, share in the comments below!

 

 

 

This is Thirty.

 

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I recently hit that milestone that every twenty-something dreads, I turned THIRTY. I will admit, I was not looking forward to this birthday. Thirty felt like a looming deadline that you just keep trying to avoid, a clock ticking that the more you focus on it, the louder it gets and the faster the time passes.

For most of my twenty-ninth year I was dreading each month as they passed and inched me closer to thirty, but my attitude changed in July. It wasn’t the depression that was making me dread thirty (although I am sure that it wasn’t any help), it was the irrational view that society puts on this turning point. There seems to be a bucket list of accomplishments that you are supposed to have checked off during your twenties and if you haven’t, you feel like a failure and that your opportunity to achieve them has passed you by. As my new treatment for my depression started working, the dread of thirty started to seem more and more irrational and my excitement started to grow instead.

Instead of looking at turning thirty as an end, I started to recognize it as beginning to a whole new adventure. Instead of allowing myself to feel the pressure of society to meet their idea of what I should do before thirty, I decided to tune them out completely.  The only timeline in place to complete any bucket list is the one that you put on yourself and you get to determine what defines you as a success or failure.

I am so proud of all that I accomplished in my twenties! I moved to a city where I didn’t know a soul and today call this place home with many relationships, personally and professionally, that will carry me into my thirties. I spent much of my time in my twenties being introspective about myself and my relationships with others. What I learned about who I am and what I believe in is invaluable and I know that I will only continue to learn and grow in my thirties.

My viewpoint that turning thirty was the end was so immature and short sighted. It was so much more fulfilling to embrace thirty with open arms and excitement for all that it will bring. If there is one thing that I know for sure, it is that life is only getting better.

I am mentally healthier than I have ever been and I am ready to take the world by storm as a thirty year old woman. Watch out career, I am here to kick some ass. Family and friends, these relationships are only getting stronger.

I am ready for any adventure that thirty brings, but I won’t be sitting around waiting for them to knock on my door, I am going to make them happen.

My Charlotte Fall Bucket List

My Charlotte Fall Bucket List

With Labor Day in our rear view mirror it’s time to look ahead to all the wonderful events that Fall brings.  Maybe it is the Floridian in me, but watching the season change and how nature explodes with color is my favorite time of the year.  There are so many things to do in Fall that I thought I would make a bucket list this year to make sure that I take full advantage of this time of year.

Here are a few things that I want to make sure check off my list:

Festival in the Park

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I can’t miss this event, especially since I live within walking distance of Freedom Park. I love strolling around and checking out the different vendors. It reminds me of the hundreds of craft shows that my Mom dragged to as a kid and it is always fun to see what unique gifts you can pick up for people.

This years event begins on Friday, September 19th and runs through Sunday the 21st. You can check out their website for more details: http://www.festivalinthepark.org/

Apple Picking

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I have never been apple picking, so this is going to be the year! I had no idea that apple picking season can go from June until December. My favorite is Granny Smith so I will be heading out in mid-October to find these. Now I should probably start planning apple recipes because I have a feeling I may have a few laying around.

Want to find an orchard around Charlotte? There are lots of options to choose from, check out this list: http://charlotte.cbslocal.com/top-lists/best-places-for-apple-picking-in-charlotte/ 

UF vs LSU Game (in Gainesville)

My all time favorite Fall tradition is heading back to Gainesville to watch the Gators play. There is nothing like the energy on campus on a game day, tailgating under the oak trees and then yelling from the sidelines of The Swamp. It has been three years since I have made it back to Gainesville and I can not wait to get home.

Oktoberfest

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With more than a 100 breweries attending and about 40 of them being from North Carolina Oktoberfest is said to be one of the best events in Charlotte and I have never been! This year’s event is at the NC Music Factory and would put money on the chance of my day ending with a pretzel and beer cheese from VBGB.

This year’s event is on September 27th (always confuses me that it isn’t in October) and you can buy tickets here.

Pumpkin Palooza

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For the 6th year (ah! how did that happen?) I am throwing a pumpkin carving party with my famous chili bar. This is my favorite event of the year.  I put out a chili bar with beef chili, vegetarian chili and the crowd favorite, white chicken chili. Finish it up with a selection of every topping you can dream and you have a crowd pleaser!  This year will be better than ever with a friend brewing his own pumpkin beer for tasting that night. It will be a great gathering of food, brews and friends to celebrate the season.

Hike Crowders Mountain

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You would think I would have taken advantage of with a view like this, especially when it is only only 45 minutes from home. I’ve heard there are a few trails that can be a bit challenging so Meyer will be sitting this one out, but I am looking forward to checking out the fall foliage on this hike.

Yoga on Tap at Olde Mecklenburg Brewery

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If you wanted to, you could take a free yoga class every day in Charlotte. There are so many wonderful options to take advantage of to get your namaste on for free! Lululemon has started hosting yoga at the new OMB location on Tuesdays at 6:30pm. The teachers rotate from a variety of studios around town and if weather permits the class is held outside. What better way to take advantage of the cooler temperatures and to enjoy the beautiful new facility at OMB (if you haven’t been, you should check it out)?

Bike Rides with Meyer Pup

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As a birthday gift to myself I purchased a sweet mint green beach cruiser. Dilworth is a great area to cruise around (except what is with all those sneaky hills?) and take advantage of the greenway nearby. In order to fulfill my goal of being the craziest dog lady on the block, I outfitted the bike with a basket for Meyer to ride in. I plan on seeing this view a lot this fall!

What is on your bucket list this Fall? Share in the Comments below! 

The Power of Depression

There has been such an outpouring of reactions to Robin William’s death. I have found myself pouring over every article and finding comfort in the words of so many speaking out about mental health, but no one has said it better than Chaz Pazienza. As I read his article, If You live With Depression, You Understand Why Robin Williams Took His Own Life, I found myself absorbed in how he so eloquently describes what depression feels like.  His words capture the torture that depression brings:

I’ve battled depression for years, had that voice in my head — the voice that sounds just like my own voice — telling me that I’m worthless, hopeless, and damaged beyond repair.

How evil is a sickness that turns your own voice into your own worst enemy? When you hear that you are worthless over and over again, you believe it and the relief you can imagine is to give up.

So many people today are discussing how joyful and passionate Robin Williams was. His joy was infections and spread to everyone within reach of his voice.

“Imagine what it takes to convince a man of Robin Williams’s passion and character that life is often an exercise in punishing misery and death is the sensible answer to it. If you can do that, you can begin to grasp how deeply depression runs and how tragic its impact is.”

Today as you remember about how talented Robin was, how much joy and laughter that he brought to us,  think about how powerful the depression was that could extinguish such an amazing person’s light.

We have so far to go in battling depression and there is still so much to learn so we can find effective treatments. If you are interested in donating to mental health research, there are several foundations that are doing great work in this fight.

Anxiety and Depression Association of America 

Brain and Behavior Research Foundation 

National Alliance on Mental Health 

 

 

Raise Your Voice Louder Than Depression

I don’t know where to begin. The news that Robin Williams has passed away from suicide is devastating and brings so many different feelings. I am outraged that such a precious human had to die because of depression. I am sadden that so many are shocked because Robin Williams hid it so well, because he shouldn’t have had to. And sadly, I am grateful because the only good thing that can come from such a tragedy is the awareness that it brings to this disease and maybe one person won’t suffer in silence any longer.

For anyone who has not experienced suicidal thoughts, it is so difficult to understand how things can get that bad. It’s not the “things” that you would expect, like losing a job or a break up,  that push you towards suicide, it is when the depression gets so loud that you can’t hear your rational thoughts any more. Depression manifests itself in so many ways but one of the worst ways is that it takes over your thoughts.  Your brain is taken hostage by a different voice than your own and this voice takes every thought you have and turns it negative. To make matters worse, it churns out these negative thoughts at a rapid pace so that you can’t correct the negative thoughts with rational ones.

Those with depression often suffer from sleeping disorders as well, so these negative thoughts take over 24/7. Imagine living like this for days, weeks and months, that is how long it can take to realize that you are in a depressive episode. You become exhausted at fighting and start to believe the negative thoughts and eventually, you just want it all to end. You’re exhausted and all you can think about is finding relief. It feels like the only option is to give up.

I have been there and it still feels shameful to admit it. I didn’t want anyone to look at me with that judgement that I was suicidal. I didn’t want them to use that word to describe me.  But why does it take using that word to get some people to understand the severity of depression?

We can each make a difference by removing the shame and judgement from our perception of depression and suicide. Talk about mental health openly and without reservations because you could be making a difference to someone who is silently suffering and not even know it. The more we talk, the louder our voices will become and we increase the chance that we can be heard over the depression that someone is silently fighting. Your voice does make a difference.

“No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world”

Robin Williams

Thank you Robin for sharing your joy with us, I only wish we could have saved you from your pain.

I Get It From My Momma

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It could be said that I got my depression from my Mom. She has suffered from re-occuring major depression since she was young and she recalls that her Mother, my Grandmother, suffered from it as well. Studies show that children of a parent with re-occuring major depression are 4-5 times more likely to suffer from major depression.

I have been very vigilant about my predisposition to depression since I was in high school and tried to stay aware if any symptoms started to be prevalent. When I started going to therapy after college, I would cringe anytime the word “depression” was brought up. I was determined that I didn’t want to be my Mother. Don’t get me wrong, my Mother is an amazing woman. I would be lucky to be half of the woman that she is. Blame it on part immaturity (we all have worried about becoming our Mothers at some point, right?) and the fact that I had watched this illness steal so many parts of her life. I have been in the front row witnessing how she has suffered and she has continually battled to overcome her depression.

I convinced myself that I was different from my Mother. I don’t even look like her, I am the spitting image of my Father, so my genes had to be different as well (obviously sound logic to determining your genetic make up).  When I was first diagnosed, I wouldn’t let myself believe that I was “like my Mother.” I was terrified of suffering the way that she did. It wasn’t until recently that I realized that I may have inherited my depression from my Mother, but more importantly, I was lucky to inherit her bravery, as well.

Since I have gone public with my depression people have used the word “brave” to describe my actions. I figured after awhile that if so many people were making the comment there must be some validity to it. I am very introspective and I had to figure out, where did the bravery come from.  Then as listened to my Mom casually tell a story of how she went zip lining on her own on a recent trip, that I thought, “damn she is a brave, badass lady.”

My Mother has fought depression most of her life, but she keeps fighting and she has never given up. As if fighting off the symptoms of depression wasn’t enough, she has made it her goal to push herself outside every comfort zone she has. A woman who used to be terrified to drive over a highway overpass conquers her fears on zip line tours now. If it scares her, she has gone out and tried it. She may still be scared, but she is brave in facing those fears. She refuses to let depression steal her life and I don’t think there is any truer definition of bravery than that.

My Mom was completely helpless in passing depression to me, but she has made all the difference in my ability to face it and fight it by teaching me to be brave. It is through this gift of bravery that I have been able to fight my depression and I couldn’t be more grateful.

 

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