You are not alone.

This week has hit me pretty hard with the loss of Kate Spade and now Anthony Bourdain.
You guys know that I've been open with my dad and his brother with their death by suicide.

My dad took his life on July 4th, 15 years ago.

I suffer from depression, sometimes so severe that it has lead me down a dark road and into some of those thoughts. It had scared me to face this world. At points where I felt that if I left, it woudn't matter.
It got so low at one point that I reached up and out and found resources that guided me into some brighter light.

The death of my dad, uncle and several friends inspired me to do something.

This is the reason that I devote a LOT of my time and efforts into Forefront Suicide Prevention. I attest to the work that they do, the outreach they have and how they saved me.

While we may never know the demons, and struggles they endure or the thoughts they possess. We need to reasure everyone there's help. You are loved, you are enough.
If you find yourself needing help, Forefront Suicide Prevention can and will help you.

 

You Are Not Alone

Hope you are having a great start to 2018!

In the last blog, I opened myself up. Transparency is something that I take great pride in.  You will see that I’m just a normal person who deals with some of the same struggles as all of you. This year, I will continue to talk about depression, share some laughs, and a peek into life as a married bonus mom. This is me letting you into this little life that will bring its ups and downs.  

New Years Eve was spent watching the Hawks with friends (sure hope we can do better next season), then wrapped up 2017 with the hubs and kiddo having fondue. I was laughing on our way home from dinner thinking about how many times we visited The Melting Pot in 2017. It’s odd for me since I don’t eat dairy, but this place has a grip on Kyle and Jess. We were there at least 5 times $$$. I couldn’t think of a better way to close out what was a challenging than with the 2 people who have my heart.

New Year's Eve Dinner at The Melting Pot

New Year's Eve Dinner at The Melting Pot

When we got home that night, the TV was already tuned into seeing the countdown to 2018. As I watched the countdown from 10 to 1, I made myself a promise - a promise to be a better person, wife, and friend and to make a difference.  But how?  My goal this year is to give more to my community; give back to those who gave me strength and hope. I will continue to support to the organizations that I so strongly believe in. Like Seattle Humane, Seattle Animal Shelter Foundation and Forefront.

Something that has weighed heavy on my heart and mind this week are the fans, friends and family of WSU Quarterback Tyler Hilinski.

I've told you my thoughts on suicide. My father and uncle both committed suicide.

This comes back to my feelings and thoughts about mental health. If you read my previous blog posts, you know about the struggle I have with depression.

The heartbreak is real.

The feelings are real.

My biggest pet peeve is when people tell you that it will be all ok, or "this too shall pass". While that may make sense to say to one who is having these feelings to you, it doesn't make sense to the ones that are feeling it. While I can't speak for everyone, I can speak for myself.

If you said to me that it's all going to be ok when I'm feeling lost, logically I know it will be.  My head would tell you otherwise. I sink into place of darkness, it's really hard to explain. If someone needs to cry, let them. Just comfort them, don't try to fix it. Let them be in that moment.

My colleague Kim Shepard wrote a fantastic story about this. Please take a moment to read this.

SEIZE THE AWKWARD... THAT'S THE MANTRA OF A NEW CAMPAIGN FROM THE AMERICAN FOUNDATION FOR SUICIDE PREVENTION AND "JED". A NON-PROFIT STARTED BY PARENTS WHO LOST THEIR SON, JED, TO SUICIDE.
THE CAMPAIGN IS GEARED TOWARD TEENS AND YOUNG ADULTS... AND IT TAKES A SOFT APPROACH TO A SERIOUS SUBJECT.  IT OFFERS ADVICE ABOUT HOW TO START A CONVERSATION ABOUT MENTAL HEALTH.
THERE'S ALSO A STAR COMPONENT.  SEVERAL WELL-KNOWN ACTORS AND YOU-TUBERS SHARE THEIR OWN EXPERIENCES.  LIKE TYLER POSEY, FROM MTV'S TEEN WOLF SERIES... WHO SHARES WHAT IT WAS LIKE AFTER HE LOST HIS MOM TO BREAST CANCER.
HE SAYS IT TOOK HIM A WHILE TO BE COMFORTABLE WITH OPENING UP... BUT HE'S GLAD HIS FRIENDS DIDN'T LET IT GO AND KEPT ASKING HIM HOW HE WAS DOING.  NOW, HE DOES THE SAME FOR THEM......
AND THE WHOLE SERIES REVOLVES AROUND THE IDEA THAT WE DON'T NEED TO WORK SO HARD TO FILL THOSE AWKWARD SILENCES.
IN ADDITION TO THEIR TIPS ABOUT STARTING THE CONVERSATION... AND KEEPING IT GOING. THE CAMPAIGN ALSO TALKS ABOUT WHEN IT'S TIME TO GET A PROFESSIONAL INVOLVED. YOU CAN FIND ALL OF THE VIDEOS AND INFORMATION AT SEIZE-THE-AWKWARD-DOT-ORG.


All I have been thinking about is how deep into the darkness Tyler was. My heart hurts for him and for his family. I will continue to pray for him and their healing.

You are not alone, and if you are feeling like you need someone to talk to I'm going to leave these numbers right here for you.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
Call 1-800-273-8255

Text Crisis Text Line
at 741741

Or contact the organization that I fully stand behind.
http://www.intheforefront.org/
Telephone: 206.543.1016

While I may not be a Coug, I'm a fan. Tyler you will be missed and your spirit will live on.

 

Where your heart is...so goes your time!

Can you believe that the year is almost over? I know that it's only October 11th, but think about it. Thanksgiving is 6 weeks away and Christmas is only 11 more Wednesdays away. You ready for some holidays?

I want to thank many of you who reached out about the last post on Depression. Something that I struggle with. Several of you have told me your stories; thank you for trusting me with your truth.

Speaking of truths. If you missed Ron and Don this week on 97.3 KIRO radio, please click here to read. Don shared how he is going to "enter the arena" and I find this to be such an inspiring post. 

This month continues to be very busy. This weekend I'm honored to emcee The Seattle Animal Shelter Foundation Raining Cats and Dogs Dinner and Auction for the 3rd year. Hands down, this is one of the favorite events that I do. I'm taking my mother in law & little one so they get to see the great work these people do. Tickets are still available if you'd like to support this organization. 

Next week, I'll be co-hosting with Scott Carty an event for Forefront. This is about Restoring Hope. This is about Suicide Prevention. I've shared my own story about suicide earlier this summer. Forefront is another program that I have, and will continue to dedicate my time to & for. The work that Forefront has done and continues to do is pretty damn amazing. So proud to be a part of their organization and will shout from the rooftops about the work that they do!

Raising awareness about mental health, suicide prevention, animals and breast cancer. All of these issues need our attention. Believe me, I know there are more. These are my focus right now - they are personal.  They have my heart.

I would LOVE to hear where you put your support. Please leave a comment below.