Archive | December 2017

Rethinking And the Capital D Depression

I know I have covered this topic in some detail ages ago with my post called Having the “Sads” and Other Confusing Terminology…do take a look back if you are so inclined as I explain my own emotional well being descriptor words. But with today’s active conversation on the usage of some very important words in certain very specific arenas I felt the time was good for a bit of a refresher.

Of course, I must say this is all MY personal opinion born of our family’s attempt to normalize and understand how mental health has affected us and our future… and here I go.

Depression … I mean the word, what does it mean to you? Depressed, how do you use it? Is it a common word used to describe a vast series of emotional (and not so emotional) situations? Do you keep that word on reserve?

In our family the word depression/feeling depressed has been given a special weight to it. Now there is a reason for this… mental health is not a tangiable thing, you can’t see the illness, you can just see the effects.

I am sad that the ice cream fell off my cone, I can rally back with a new ice cream, a different treat, or the knowledge that this is just something that happened.

I am depressed when I cannot rally back, I cannot just pull myself out of what others perceive as a “funk”. I am fighting against a current (well not so much me, as this is not something I have personally experienced… but as Ken has explained it to me. And other likewise diagnosed friends), possibly stuck or sinking down. That is depressed.

I have often discussed with my kids the importance of proper word usage. The English language is an evolving language. It is our responsibility to realize that our words have power. It is our responsibility to try and understand that some of these words have gravity.

I want my children to know that if they come to me and say, “Mommy, I feel depressed, things aren’t right”. That I WILL take them seriously. I will take you, my reader, my friend, my family member, or even just someone who needs to say it seriously.

Depression is not spilled milk or a cancelled movie. Depression is heartbreak and soul tearing sadness and fear. It is suicidal thoughts and negative voices. It is serious and I want to respect that. I need to know that if Ken were to tell me he felt depressed I need to take it seriously.

I think this conversation is timely and worth repeating now especially. The holiday season (whatever you do or do not celebrate) is not jolly for all. Repeated reminders of joyous families, large gifts and happiness can have an opposite affect for some. So let’s hold onto the knowledge that if someone were to say the feel depressed right now… maybe, just maybe we can listen and make a difference.

I felt sad this past week because there is so much family togetherness going on right now and my dearest friends who are family and family are a country away. But I easily was able to rally with phone calls, cards posted and gifts finished and sent off. I was not depressed, I was sad and that is valid. Not using the word depressed for that situation does not invalidate the experience but it does (I find) help keep it in perspective.

So, I hope I have gotten the conversation rolling again. Let’s ensure that we are aware of our words… English has so many beautiful options for degrees of emotions.

And if you need to use the word depressed, depression, worse yet suicidal… speak up. If not to a therapist or religious guide, I am here and willing to listen. My family to yours… we love you all. Thank you for entering my dialogue and listening to what I have to say. All my love in the holidays to everyone!IMG_20171210_002613_555

Joy in July

July is, of course, a month that starts out with a bang with Canada Day and July 4th. It is also my mother’s birthday and full on summer activity. We went to the Zoo, entered in the County Fair, and I even made a Dragon. July is always a busy month.

This July we had family come to visit. Nana and Baba drove up with the cousins. So there was lots to do with them. 

Beach trips.20170730_113832

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20170723_132541Baking and ice cream making.20170730_205050

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Visits to the park.20170727_121540

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It had been a while since all the kids were together. 20170728_215230

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We were invited to a birthday party at a park!IMG_20170716_185230_219

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Of course there was LOTS of time to get to know Neko-chan better. Seriously I am in love. And so you will be inundated with pictures of fluffy amazingness. I just wish you could feel her through the pictures. SO SOFT!!!20170726_085520

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We visited with Cousin Robbie. Still a family favourite. Echo even got to sit on his bike! He wears all the safety equipment in this helmet optional state.20170710_184225

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Of course we watched some soccer games.

Aidan

Aidan

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And walked to the YMCA … A LOT. Ken had a business trip in July and the YMCA being so close was a life saver.20170724_113302

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Emanuel and Echo even won a colouring contest

Emanuel and Echo even won a colouring contest

Trinity and Emanuel have continued in their Karate adventure. IMG_20170727_192510_458

We even saw some produce from our garden.IMG_20170711_125555_800

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Found a Canadian penny on a walk!!20170712_123407

Bought ice cream from a passing ice cream truck.. a first for all of us!20170711_145817

I found time for Tim Hortons… of course!20170722_134506

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Ken and I joined forces to create a lovely chalkboard in the front entry. He does an amazing job with ideas I come up with!20170709_163333

We even managed to squeak in school!IMG_20170718_103122_561

And did I mention I am obsessed with my chinchilla? Cuz…IMG_20170710_143514_920

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It was a great July!IMG_20170708_143810_491

Anoka Lights

A new experience for our Christmas season. Renee suggested that we join them in checking out the Anoka Lights. They are held at the Anoka county fairground (which we HAVE been to, of course). So the Friday it opened we headed out in our winter gear to check it out. 20171208_180147_Burst01

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20171208_182156There were snacks and live music to experience, a hay ride and Santa who we didn’t stand in line for. We were there for the lights. 

Though we did snag some snacks.

Though we did snag some snacks.

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20171208_181829They were lovely, though I think the train set you could view from a window was Echo’s favourite. 20171208_182221

It was worth the drive. And afterward we headed back to our house for some company and a light dinner. A wonderful end to the week!

Hot chocolate!

Hot chocolate!