Climbing Out of the Hole

Brown (154 of 182) ps
This post is a long-time coming and is a direct order from Chris, who, in addition to all the other titles he holds in my life, now holds the title of, “Therapist.”

This past weekend I went to visit my grandmother and my parents for the day while Chris was working.  Bean and I had a great afternoon with my Grandma and mom and after we said goodbye to my Grandma, we headed over to my Mom’s house to pick up a few things and then Bean and I were going to get on the road back home.  My mom and I were sitting in her living room chatting about this and that and for whatever reason, I started crying.  And I don’t think I stopped until Sunday afternoon.  A lot of people would blame a sudden onset of emotion like that on being pregnant, but I’ve been using that excuse for things for the past couple months and this weekend I finally hung up that excuse and started taking responsibility.

The truth is that Chris has been right.  I’m struggling a bit with depression, or rather anxiety, at the moment.  And while I have tried everything I can to pass off what’s been going on as just being a pregnant, full-time working mother of a toddler, the whole truth is that it is much deeper than that.  Pregnancy hormones have certainly contributed and I’m sure they have made some things harder to get over, but deep down I have known that this is more than just hormonal.

Before I go any further, you should know these two things about me, if you don’t already:

1.  I am a people pleaser.  In the worst sense.

2.  I have incredibly high expectations for myself.  As in, incredibly UNREALISTIC expectations for myself.

I’ve always been this way and at times it is exhausting to me, but it has never before caused problems for me, necessarily.  But right now those two qualities are drowning me, one high expectation at a time.

What I discovered this weekend after talking through some things with my parents is that I have been carrying around an incredible amount of guilt ever since our move.  I joke occasionally about having the guilt that all mothers feel about things, but this is different.  It was such a deep guilt that I didn’t really even recognize it in myself.  It almost needs another word to describe this kind of guilt.

Since our move to Florida, I have had this weight of guilt because I blamed myself for all the struggles we were having.  I’m the one, after all, who asked Chris to move to Florida.  And then we got here and things just fell apart.  Our financial situation was so overwhelming and dark that it just seemed uncontrollable.  I couldn’t get a job.  I got pregnant.  My student loans doubled (thanks to a repayment plan that we now can’t afford).  Our house was broken into.  We didn’t have health insurance.  I mean, it’s been rough.  And every step of the way, I blamed myself.  I kept telling myself, “This wouldn’t have happened if we had stayed in Connecticut,” and what I left unspoken was the next thought, “And the only reason we aren’t in Connecticut anymore is because of me.”

Because of that guilt and my irrational need to please people, I started ignoring the problems we had facing us in an effort to pretend like everything was okay.  I didn’t tell Chris exactly how bad our finances were.  I stopped writing anything other than my blog, including turning down a book contract and telling my agent that I wanted to put the book on hold.  I stopped taking care of things like trying to find us medical coverage and working through problems I had on a daily basis.

In short, I just shut down.

One of the biggest challenges in the middle of all of this became my lack of sleep.  Because I wouldn’t face these problems on a day-to-day basis, I couldn’t hide from myself and so I found I was laying in bed all night long, wide awake, worrying.  I was getting maybe three or four hours of sleep a night.  The next day, I’d work all day, and by the time I got home from work I was so exhausted that I didn’t want to deal with anything when I got home either.  And so, I’d go to sleep.  But it was more than just a pregnant woman taking a little nap.  I would come home and physically could not get myself off the couch.  I wouldn’t cook dinner, I wouldn’t give Bean a bath, I wouldn’t put Bean to bed.  Chris did it all and I just laid on the couch or in our bed, sleeping.

I’m certainly not saying that excessive sleep automatically means it’s depression – especially when you’re pregnant!  But I know myself and I know my pregnancy and I know that the sleep wasn’t sleep from tiredness.  It was sleep to avoid problems.  It was a place to go where I didn’t have to deal with anything, even if that meant I wasn’t supporting my husband or spending time with my son.

And, of course, this led to MORE feelings of guilt.

It was a cycle that I just couldn’t get out of.  It was Chris who finally called it what it was.  He had approached the topic with me before, casually.  I even did a Bellycast where we talked about depressions vs. pregnancy and it was a funny and fun conversation.  But when I sat down and talked to my parents this weekend, I finally put all of this into words for the first time and saying it out loud made me realize that Chris had actually been right the whole time.

When I came home Sunday from my parent’s, I told Chris everything that I had spoken to them about.  And I told him that I thought he might have been right.  He told me there were two things he had noticed about me over the past several months that really bothered him.  First, I seem to have lost that desire to work through anything.  When things happened before, I was always optimistic.  I was always sure there was a solution and that that we just had to work through things to find it.  Now though I just shut down when a problem came up.  I stopped answering emails, I stopped writing, I stopped opening the mail, I stopped talking to people.  I literally just shut down.  And I know why.  We have been through so much in the past seven months that I have just run out of sunshine and hope.  Isn’t that sad?  I have had so many things in the past few months fall through and get worse and upset me that now I don’t even want to try to make things better.

The second thing Chris had noticed about me was a change in my faith.  I have always been a believer that things happen as part of God’s plan.

“And in the past few months,” Chris told me, “I don’t hear that faith in your voice anymore.  It’s like you’re just floating along when the wind blows and you can’t find your bearings.”

I couldn’t have said it any better myself, really.  That’s exactly how I feel.  I still have faith in my good and powerful God, but I’ve lost the faith that He will provide for us or that this is part of His plan because for the past seven months I have felt so ALONE.  I have tried to stop and listen to Him speak to me through all of this and I have heard Him and seen Him in glimpses, but right now, to be honest with you, I’m just too tired to make the effort to listen to Him anymore.  I still pray and I still go to church and I still serve a mighty God, but right now it feels more like I’m just watching Him work around me but that I’m not actively involved in that process.  And that makes me feel far away from God.  And lonely.

To talk to me, I doubt you’d even notice something was off.  I’m not crying in corners or wearing black every day (though I am wearing an adorable black maternity dress at the moment…).  But I know something is wrong and, thankfully, my husband and family know me well enough and love me strongly enough to call attention to what’s going on.  After this weekend, I talked to both my parents and Chris and we all came up with several different plans of action.  Some were to help Chris and I get through some tough financial hurdles we have and some were to help me get myself in a better place.  One of those things, actually, was writing this.  Chris suggested that I write about it because I use writing to think things through and even if I don’t ever end up publishing this post, at least I will have worked through it enough in my head to write it down.  And one of those things is to talk to my doctor.  About how I feel now, yes, but mostly about how to avoid and yet prepare for postpartum depression, in case I go through this again after I have the baby.

I’m still not sure if I’m going to publish this post.  It is really hard for me to admit to myself that this is the place I am in right now, so saying it out loud is a little intimidating.  But if I do post it, it will be because admitting all of these things is the first step in dealing with them.  I’ve recognized them and now I’m acknowledging them.  And then I’ll be able to begin working through them.  And, thankfully, I’ll be able to do that with a strong family and a good husband standing beside me.

On Saturday in the middle of my 24 hour break down, my mom and dad asked me if, given all that had happened and all that was going on in my life right now, was there anyone in the world that I would trade places with?  And instantly, honestly, I answered, “Absolutely not.”  Life is hard.  And sometimes it just doesn’t seem to get any easier.  But life is still good.  MY life is still good.  And I’m looking forward to getting back to a place where I can appreciate that every day.

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144 Thoughts to “Climbing Out of the Hole”

  1. elizabeth

    This is the first time I commented on any of your posts (I’m a relatively new reader), but I just wanted to say thank you. I, too, am a people-pleaser and it’s a personality characteristic that has defined me and has also been my detriment. Whenever I go through a rough patch like this I try my hardest to remove my “Miss Independent” cape and lean on my family, my boyfriend, and close friends. This is what they’re there for. And trust me, they too will need you to one day repay the favor.

  2. Janie

    Good for you. For posting this. For having the courage to admit it to everyone but especially for admitting it to yourself.

    If God brought you too it, he can bring you through it.

    Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me.

  3. I’m not really sure what to say… I’m sure you will get a lot of comments from people who have been through/are going through depression, and I’m one of them.
    It’s a very hard thing to talk about, which is why I slipped downhill for four years before someone finally stepped in for me and probably saved my life in the long run. It’s great to see you’re able to begin working through it relatively early, and I think it’s very cathartic to be able to write about it.
    You have a huge support network online, as well as your fantastic family. I’m really glad you decided to post this. Maybe depression and anxiety wouldn’t be so hard to talk about if more people were openly honest about their experiences…

  4. Jo

    I’m glad you posted it. I’ve been blaming this whole crappy year on my Dad dying last Christmas, but over the last few weeks I’ve realised it’s more than that, and I’m seeking help. I hope you start feeling back to normal really soon.

  5. Saudamini

    Greetings from India. 🙂
    I have never commented before since we practically come from two different worlds but I just had to, today. I have struggled with clinical depression this past year and I know that this can be SO tough but it all will get better. And, I can honestly say that I have learnt to appreciate my family, my boyfriend even more after this because it is so comforting to know that some people are still willing to be with you even when you are not perfect. It’s a privilege. And, you have it.

  6. Katherine

    It’s incredibly hard to know what to say to this post except that you have been incredibly brave. I found that telling my friends and family about my depression was harder than anything else. It is a horrible feeling when you know “something” is wrong but you’re not sure quiet what it is. Now you know what is making you feel like this you can start to sort it out. It is not an easy thing to deal with but you have an immense amount of support and you are a strong person so you “will” be able to do it. Just keep reminding yourself that you are not on your own, you have so many people around you who love you and want to look after you and with their help and God’s help you will soon be back to feeling like the Katie we all know and love.

  7. Katie, you are so brave. I can completely relate to you on so many levels, which is why I love your blog so much. I think a lot of people can relate to this post — I know I can. I love that you have such a wonderful support system and family and I know they want the very best for you. I want the best for you, too! There is a light at the end of the tunnel and I believe you are on your way to finding it. LOVE.

  8. you poor thing. Good for you for writing this, I hope it helped. I know that it’s got to be a really challenging time and I hope that you’re able to work through it. It’s so helpful that you’ve got a great support group!

  9. Ashley

    Thank you very much for being brave enough to post this, and for trusting your readers with this. I know it can’t be easy.

    Like (I’m sure) many of your readers will tell you, I’ve also been through serious depression. I was actually on medication for a long time. I’m not anymore, but I know how hard it is to be depressed all the time, and the guilt that comes with that. It’s a vicious cycle because you feel guilty, therefore you feel depressed, so you don’t feel like doing anything or talking to anyone, and then you feel guilty about that, which makes you feel more depressed.

    For me, I credit God with saving my life. I don’t think I would be typing this had I not found the presence of God in a horrible situation. I will be praying for you in this time. Hang in there.

  10. Katrina

    “For I know the plans I have for you. Plans to prosper you, never to forsake you to give you a hope and a purpose.” Jeremiah 29:11. This is me and my husbands wedding verse. We had it engraved in our rings. Whenever things are rough we point to our rings and somehow we know it will all work out.

  11. Nate's Mom

    Ok. Let’s recount the past six months or so – in no particular order. You moved. Twice. (1) You had a big change in finances. (2) You got preggers. (3) Your house got broken into. (4) You got a new job – in a new field. Twice. First as a stay at home mom and now as a fabulous English teacher. (5) At your other job, you revamped your entire blog. (6) Your “vacation” included a blow up mattress and screeching birds. (7) Mr. Bear went missing. (8) If I were to take any ONE of those items, it would be change enough. Stressful enough. You, my dear, are juggling them all with more grace than you realize. You are strong and, yes, you are deservedly tired. Having your rockstar family around you — and talking to them (and imaginary us) about the fears and realities — is therapeutic and makes those fears much, much smaller. Glad you’re here. Take it one breath at a time. Enjoy the little things. I know this is beyond the scope of this entry – but I’ve been thinking a lot lately about starting a gratitude journal. Some people do entries every morning and every night of what they’re grateful for – from the day, overarching, etc. It might help me take my mind off of those BHAGs (big hairy audacious goals) that aren’t going so well at the moment…. Love love love to you!

  12. Hi Katie! You’re so brave for posting this. I’ve struggled with depression (and anxiety too. They kind of seem to go hand in hand sometimes). I’m a lot like you…. People pleasing and unrealistically high expectations for myself. Im that girl with cancer, so I definitely understand what it’s like to go through change and blame yourself for the negative parts of it. Im constantly blaming myself for my cancer. “I should have gone to the doctor sooner… I should have known my own body, etc.” but the truth is, I made the best choices I knew how to with the information I have. Now I know that I’m just your imaginary friend :), but from what I see, you made good choices for yourself and your family with the information you had. And god has a plan for your life, and I’m sure that by teaching in Florida you’re affecting so many kids lives in a positive way, the new guy is probably going to be some super baby, just like little bean.

    Anyways, I’m sorry this post is all over the place. I’m getting kind of dizzy now, so I’m going to skip the proofreading and just submit, so please ignore any horrible misspellings or grammatical errors 🙂

    You’re amazing, Katie! And you’ll get through this. I’m praying for you 🙂

  13. I am a huge people pleaser myself and I can tell you that I think I would be feeling the same way. I am so glad you posted this and shared with us. Sometimes it helps to get it all out.

  14. Danielle

    Katie…it’s great therapy for you that you posted this. You, like me, get everything out in writing and it can take the weight off so to speak. But you, unlike me, are brave enough to share all of that with the world and with the people you know intimately in “real” life…I haven’t been active in my faith for years, but I do pray every now and again hoping that God is still there listening, and I want you to know that I’m praying for you…you are such an amazing inspiration to many many people.

  15. Ella

    Thanks for posting this Katie 🙂 You certainly have been through a tough time and everyone has a breaking point. So glad you have Chris & Bean & your supportive family. I suffered severe PND after my first baby (it put me off having another but i did years later and thankfully didnt get PND again). For most of my adult life i have suffered anxiety/depression – at the moment its under control and im ok. Im pretty good at picking up on my mood now and am looking after myself better as well. I find if i dont take on too many commitments, eat well, get enough sleep (not an easy one as i suffer insomnia as well) im ok – its when things get too overwhelming my health starts to suffer. Sorry this is about you, not me! But i just wanted to share a little of what its like to be me. I hope you start to feel better soon 🙂 I like the idea of the above comment about a gratitude journal – what a great idea !

  16. Claire H

    Hi Katie, I have been reading your blog from over the pond for some time now and so look forward to your daily musings but I have never left a comment until now. This post has struck such a chord with me as I found myself in a similar position a couple of years ago. I too am a complete people pleaser with an inablility to say no to anyone and as a result I found myself in a dark and scary place. Saying the word depression out loud or writing it down might make you feel like a failure or over dramatic but trust me when I say that because you have written it things will only get better from here. Like you it was my nearest and dearest who notived that I was off kilter and like you put it ‘shutting down’ and because of them I can say two years later that I am happy again. Where there is darkness Katie, light will follow. I send you this with much love and hope that light will slowly engulf you again. Claire xx

  17. As someone who struggles with depression herself, I know it can be hard to recognize and even harder to bring yourself out of it. I wish I knew the Bible verse, but something I always recite in my head as I face battles in court and day-to-day is “Cast your fears upon Him, for He cares for you.” He does, and you have a bunch of people out there who do as well. Praying for you!

  18. Samira

    Thank you for posting this and telling your story. As a college student, my struggle with depression is much different than yours, but I know exactly how it feels to want to sleep through life. I remember many days when I thought I would just like to sleep for a year or so to get past the stressful days. Remember, this too shall pass. I say that to myself often because sometimes I get so caught up in the moment that I feel like what is happening now will always be my life. This day will one day be the past.

  19. jessa

    dear Katie,

    i am praying for you – you are such a strong, inspiring woman, and you have encouraged me through your posts (bloom where you are planted, for example – i still remember that!) and so please know that you and your family are in my prayers.

  20. Shoot. Now I feel bad for mocking Chris. By way of apology I will also admit that he was right AND that he was right about having you write this down. I could feel weight coming off of your shoulders as I scrolled down the page.

    It’s a crazy time in your life. I don’t know if it helps to know this, but I’ve been there. There’s no hole so deep or corner so removed that God’s light can’t find it. Hang in there. Simplify. Cling to what is important.

    And Katie? Give yourself a break! 🙂

  21. Lee Ann

    Katie? Here’s a big hug. We all struggle with many challenges every day, but it takes a big person to recognize the challenges and ask for help. We cannot do it alone.

  22. Amy

    Katie – I know it took a lot of courage to post this, but thank you so much for doing it. I have been through a similar situation with someone I love, and my heart goes out to you & your family. I’ll be keeping you all in my thoughts and prayers in the weeks and months to come.

  23. Katie, I have LOTS experience with depression and anxiety and I definitely know where you are coming from. The loneliness that comes with depression is crippling–and combine that with guilt and anxiety and you feel like you are drowning in despair. but I hope you know that you have lots of people in your life who are here for you. I am one of them. I remember the message you sent me when I came out on my blog about my postpartum depression. You are an amazing, talented woman–wife, mom, educator. You are strong however there is no shame in asking for help when you need it. You are lucky–you have Chris and your parents to help you. We love you, Katie and we can help you get through this!

  24. I’m sure this was super hard to put out into the universe, but I know you’re going to get a lot of cyberhugs from it–here’s one from Maryland! I think one of the great things about this post is that so many women can relate, because so many are people pleasers. There was one particular point I wanted to comment on though, and that is reconnecting with your faith. It’s always there, no matter how blue you are, and He is always waiting for you to talk to Him. He knows your heart and is just waiting to for you to reach out to Him. When I forget and start to think that I can handle all sorts of situations on my own, my anxiety level goes way up. Then He whispers and I remember. One practical thing you can do, and maybe you already do this, is just pick up your bible. Read for 15 minutes a day and you’ll be surprised how much He speaks to you through that. Good luck Katie, God bless, and all the love in the world.

  25. Maryellen

    Thank you for your courage to share this with strangers. You are a strong, beautiful person!

  26. you are not alone x
    I’ll send you some sunshine from Sydney

  27. Jennifer

    Bravo Katie. Thank you for posting this. As you can see from some of the previous comments a lot of people can relate to this and getting all of this out into the open can only help. It took a lot of courage for you to post this. I hope nothing but that best for you and your family as you work through this.

  28. I can’t say I understand exactly where you are, hello not preggers here, but I do understand that hole. And I know how scary it can be to climb OUT of that hole, because as crummy as the hole is…you at least know where you are in a sense. But I applaud you for looking to your loved ones enough to go hey toss me a rope here. I KNOW you’ll climb out because even when its dark and gloomy and windy where you are right now, God finds a way to bring in the rainbows. So just keep your eyes out for that rainbow, for surely its coming.

  29. I’ve been reading your blog for a little while but have never commented. I appreciate your openness in sharing this with us. Not only are your helping yourself by laying it all out, but I’m sure you are helping others (like myself) who have also been in a “rut.” I’m getting married in just 32 days. Your blog has been a great conversation starter between my fiance and I about issues we may face in marriage. So thank you! Your candidness is much appreciated.

  30. Katie – I can totally relate to how you are feeling. I am completely overwhelmed by everything going in my life right now too and trying to figure out how to balance it all – finances, my dad’s illness, marriage pregnancy etc. Rest assured you are not alone. I have said many times once I have the baby and am finished pregnancy I may look into antianxiety medication if things don’t get better for me. I truly hope that you can clear this hurdle and start to see the bright side of things. I think with the wonderful support of your family you are on the right path already.

  31. Your post made me want to cry. 🙁 I can relate to so many of those feelings – not wanting to fail anyone, feeling guilt for anything that goes wrong and feeling alone and separated from God. I can’t imagine feeling all of that while pregnant, hormonal and already tired. Ew.

    Good for you, though, for recognizing and admitting all of this and for making it visible. All your readers care about you and your fam and I can definitely say my thoughts and prayers are with you.

    This reminds me of one of my favorite verses in those times where we might be questioning life: ‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the LORD, ‘plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ Jeremiah 29:11

    His plans are perfect.

  32. Kirsten

    You are not alone -you are a strong woman, and amazing mom and wife – and the fact that you recognize that things aren’t right – well that’s good too. Stay strong and you’ll get through all of this (I need to follow my own advice!)

  33. It takes so much strength and courage to put out there everything you just did. I thought of your video you posted a while back where Chris was running through the symptoms of depression and you laughed it off. It made me tear up thinking how strong your walls were and that is good things have finally revealed themselves so you can be who you are… a bubbly, happy, wonderful woman, wife and mother.

    Cabin Fever in Vermont

  34. I think it was really brave of you to post this. It’s ok to admit feeling overwhelmed and it is completely ok to need help. It’s really hard as Moms to admit we can’t do it all, but you will be a much better Mom to Bean when you are getting the help you need and you will feel better just for yourself.

  35. Elisabeth A.

    Katie- thank you so much for posting this. I’ve been where you are and still struggle every day. I wish I was as brave as you and able to be open and honest with those around me. Big hugs to you.

  36. It obviously took a lot of strength to recognize all this and I hope it helps you get one step closer to being the self that you and Chris know so well. My thoughts are with you and I know that you will work your way through this!

  37. I’m so glad you posted this, although sometimes it’s hard to admit when things go wrong. I know what it feels like to have everything go your way and then all of a sudden things start going downhill and you can’t stop it and you have no idea what to do and what happened to your life. However, I know you’ll pick the pieces up and things will work out for you. Just keep your hopes up. That’s why I started my blog – to make sure I focused on at least one good thing that happened in my day because I felt like I was drowning in bad things. Keep the faith – it’ll turn out beautifully!

  38. Gina B.

    I don’t know you in real life and so I feel strange saying this, but I’m proud of you for writing this. Off and on I suffer from minor depressions and I find the hardest thing is fully admitting it. It’s easy to joke about and easy to put off, but saying it and accepting it takes a lot of strength. I admire that you put it out there for everyone and I hope that you come out of this slump better than ever.

  39. I am so proud of you for posting this. I am so glad you have such a wonderful family that can support you through this difficult time. You will climb out of this whole and they struggles will not last forever. I am praying for you.

  40. i noticed things were different around here. i knew it couldn’t be the new page, and because i have been through a move and a second pregnancy before… i suspected that things were just ‘off’ due to all that jazz. its nice to hear you notice it, confront it and want things back. change is hard and i can identify with a lot of what you have said. one day, Katie, you will be able to look back on these times and think- wow, i did that? i did ALL of that? i mean, if the Katie before now looked at today she would say, “wow. i rock.” you have come so far with Chris and Bean… you are doing great and marvelous things. KEEP GOING! 🙂

  41. kk

    i have this sleep problem that’s causing panic attacks at night too the hardest thing is letting go. I’m very happy that you are trying to do that now. I’m going to try too because i want to improve my life. 🙂

  42. Angie

    Katie, you are a wonderful, beautiful and loving person. Please know that this too shall pass, and you will be stronger & more empathetic because of it.

  43. Deb

    I support you Katie! It’s okay to break down. None of us are made that strong. You’ve had a lot thrown at you and it’s okay to be upset about it! It’s great you have such wonderful people in your life that notice when it interrupts your daily life. That is depression. But it’s definitely not the end. Its just a time for healing.

  44. Thank you for posting this… This has been a struggle in my marriage recently also, but my husband has been the one battling depression. Honestly, it has been going on for a number of years, and he has just refused to deal with it until recently. It is so heartbreaking to see your spouse dealing with depression, and knowing that you can’t really do anything about it except pray, and encourage them. I couldn’t “fix” this for him. It took a major break down in our relationship for him to finally realize how bad his depression was, and how much it was affecting our lives. He was also dealing with depression and anxiety, and it was just overwhelming. He started seeing a doctor and got on some medication, and it is truly amazing how much has changed. I have my husband back. And he has turned back to God. There is still a lot to work through, but we are finally on the right track. So, thank you for posting this. I honestly think Chris is right, that it will help you process things and start the healing process. But, it may also be just what someone else needs to hear to help them realize that they are struggling in the same place as you are. This post could honestly save someones life. Thank you for being so transparent. And good for you for taking care of yourself. I’ll be praying for you.

  45. Thinking of you and your wonderful family – you are so brave and strong and I know you can get through this. I ditto Gina B. in saying I may not know you in real life, but am oh so proud of you!!

  46. Katie, I am so sorry you are having to go through this. I pray for you my dear!

  47. Katie- what a very brave post. I teared up reading it- you are going to help so many people by being honest with yourself and your readers. I struggled with the ‘baby blues’ after my first child and it was horrible. I had to it for 14 days (though no much in time, it was the toughest 2 weeks of my life). I’ll say a prayer for you today and send positive thoughts your way. The first step is admitting and creating an action plan. Thank you again for posting- your honesty is why I read this blog!

  48. Brittany

    Im really glad you posted this blog. I know it had to be so difficult. Your vulnerablity is what makes people like me relate to you. And I know I have felt like life itself was overwhelming and I wish I couldve read something like this then to know Im not going crazy! I really admire you and I pray that things start going your way. Thanks again!

  49. Amanda in Alabama

    I’ve been there. It’s scary. It’s hard. Hang in there. You can make it.

  50. I don’t have a magic cure, or anything to say that’s not already been said. But, I wanted you to know that there’s one more person out there that appreciates your honesty, believes in you and in the power of our God, and is praying for peace for you and your family. In fact, I’m not just praying for peace, I’m praying for joy and happiness and a mountain of good things to come your way! You are loved- by your family and by all your imaginary (but real) bloggie friends.

  51. Syd

    I don’t comment often, but I’ve been reading you for a few months. Thank you for having the courage to post this. The cycle of anxiety/guilt, sleeping/anxiety/guilt is a truly hard place to be. Here’s to find your way out of the hole.

  52. As hard as it is to admit there is something more going on, know that you’re past hardest part. Now you’ve recognized it, admitted it and talked about it with your loved ones. The good news of this all, is that you WILL get better, you will feel better and happy and not so exhausted anymore. Sure, it’ll take some work, time and maybe some tears, but you’ll get there.

    Try to let go of your guilt about leaving CT too. So money has been tight..Money is just money. You also brought your little family closer to the rest of the family – and a family’s love, experiences and traditions is what really matters. You cannot replace memories of fun experiences, but you can replace and rebuild your finances. You will get there!

  53. Brooke

    I’m really glad you decided to publish this post. I’m going through something similar right now. Minus the pregnancy and toddler part. I’m sure it took a lot of strength to post about this. Good luck and I hope you are feeling better soon.

  54. Amanda

    You are not alone instead you are surrounded by a loving, concerned husband, son & family and lots of “imaginary” friends. Some of us have walked this road, some of us are currently on it with you and others haven’t experienced it but are concerned none the less. Take care of yourself, lean on God and the rest will fall on track eventually.

  55. Joke

    Katie, I don’t know what to say… You are a wonderful person and have a wonderful family, so hang on! Here’s a truckload of virtual hugs for you 🙂

  56. Amy

    Katie, you are such a strong, beautiful, courageous woman. I, too, suffer from the people pleaser/high expectations for myself disorder, and this year has been one of the hardest in my life. I am at a crossroads as to the next path I am going to take in my life–you seem to already be in the middle of yours. I know that you are finding yourself in situations that seem totally foreign, even though you have your loved ones around. But I just want to remind you of the beautiful little community you’ve built in this place. There are so many of us who can relate, and your courage to post this is a kind of conviction for us to recognize these patterns in ourselves. And watching you have the courage to deal with them is…nothing short of inspirational.

    You are a wonderful wife, an outstanding mother, and a good friend. But above all, you are a smart, capable, beautiful, passionate woman–and don’t tell yourself otherwise.

  57. You are a strong woman, Katie. And so lucky to be with your family right now. Do what you need to make things right- take the time that you need to help yourself. And lower your expectations of yourself. While it sounds funny, do it. Write down your lowered expectations. Refer to them regularly- love yourself and your family. Feed yourself with food, self love, respect and honor. You are doing a GREAT job being a mom!

  58. rachaelhardin

    Chris I am sooo glad you were finally able to reach Katie! I’ve been worried.. since the video post. Thank God!

  59. I don’t have any words of wisdom but I did want to say I’m sorry you are going through this and I’m so happy you have such wonderful people around you supporting you. I’m hoping this post was therapeutic for you and I know that it will reach others out there who are dealing with the same thing.

    I also carry the “perfectionist-Type A-people-pleaser” burden and I know how heavy that load can be. Please give yourself a by and let others take care of you for a while. I know it’s easier said than done but your family just wants your love and happiness and I’m sure is willing to take the reigns for a while so that they can have “you” back.

    In the meantime, you’ll be in my prayers. Good luck and God bless,

  60. Masha

    That was very honest and beautiful. Best of luck, you can get through this.

  61. Oh, Katie! I want to give you a ginormous hug! You are so wonderful for posting your experiences here, especially when they are this personal and difficult. Keep being so brave, and get that incredible, caring husband of yours to give you a big hug for me!

  62. Claudia

    Hi Katie, first off I want ton applaud you for having the courage of posting this. I know what its like to not say something outloud for the fear of it being true, but until you do it then you are only lying to yourself. I can sense that this post was not easy to write and even harder to publish, but you are not alone. Many people, including myself, suffer from clinical depression. I have found that therapy has helped. I don’t mean just going to talk to someone, but doing things that I like for myself, to give me selfworth. One of those things is cleaning (funny I know). Cleaning gives me a sense of control while everything else may be falling apart, but I come home, lock the door, put on some loud music and clean away. At the end, I am happier than I was before. I hope that you find something that makes you happy for yourself. Its not easy putting yourself ahead of others, especially since you are a people please but you can’t please people unless you please yourself. You are surrounded by people that love you (even some of your imaginary friends). Don’t loose faith. It is in you.

  63. Kathy Sanderson

    Thank you for posting this. I am not a frequent commenter on any blog, but I had to tell you that I appreciated reading this. I am in a similar place.

  64. Victoria

    I, like elizabeth am a relatively new reader…for the past few months I have enjoyed getting to know you and your family via blog world. This post has been the first I’ve commented on and I am so glad that you decided to publish this…so many people struggle through things quietly and feel so alone. It’s wonderful to see how your support system is working…it will be a great inspiration to others…love that!

  65. Katie- this must have been SO hard to write. I can’t even imagine. I’ve never really had to deal with anything like this before, but I, like you, tend to shut down and push things out of my mind when they get to be too much. Thankfully, it has never been so bad that I have been unable to get myself out of it in a couple of weeks or months. I can’t imagine what you are going through but I do know that you guys will make it. You’re a super strong person and you just showed all your strength by publishing this post and opening up about something so deep and personal that only a super strong person would be capable of doing it.

  66. Melissa Sunday

    This post could not have come at a stranger time for me. Off and on for the past 10 years, I have felt the way you’re feeling right now. I’m in the midst of one of those periods right this second, too. But I never got help for it.

    Last month, I was working on a therapy-based tv show and found myself really jealous of these incredibly hurting men and women because they were offered great therapy and were given the chance to turn things around. I reached out to my boss and asked her to put me in touch with a therapist. I haven’t followed up yet, but I had a dream last night that I was running out of time and needed to talk to someone soon or my chance would get away and I would give up and continue on as I always have. This post just reinforces that for me.

    I’m glad to hear that your family’s working with you. Talk to someone professional if you need to. As I can definitely attest, these feelings may ebb and flow as your circumstances get better or worse, but they won’t go away entirely unless you work on it.

    You’re not broken, you’re not a disappointment just because you need help (you’re not disappointed in your family when they lean on you, right?), and YOU’RE NOT ALONE. Good luck!

  67. Sarah H.

    Katie, I’m so proud of you for writing this! I am also a first born daughter, people pleaser, and most of the time optimistic, bubbly lady. I can imagine if you and others usually see you in that light how hard it is to admit that you are dealing with depression. And not only admitting it to yourself, but your family and imaginary friends (who love and support you!)

    I also think it is brilliant to be thinking ahead to the possibility post partum depression. About 80% of women experience baby blues and 10% of woman have full on PPD. But that last number jumps to 25% if they have a history of depression. You have a lot of family nearby for support, and I think that’s very important.

    You have had a million STRESSFUL things happen to you in 2010! Talk about a crazy year. I believe some of the commenter’s have nicely outlined all the craziness you’ve been through. I think 2011 is going to be more routine and calming (even with a new little one). It’s almost New Years, and it’s almost time for a fresh new year!

    I am so glad you DID publish this post, because I bet you’re touching more people than you imagine. Depression is just so so common, and to have someone who is going through it as well is probably so meaningful and helpful for those who are affected. I think you’ve hit something that many women resonate with. This double life we all lead. Whether it be the feeling of needing to be a wonderful mother and home maker on top of having an awesome career with a good income and growth that also makes a difference in the world (because hello it’s 2010 and we are independent and can do EVERYTHING we set our mind too) uhsarcasm. Take that with the feeling of needing to be good Christian woman and active members in church/society€”all the while making time for your husband who still needs to feel you are the sexy attractive women he married. I’m tired just writing all that drama. So yeah, I think unrealistic goals and expectations ARE a problem. But it’s wonderful you’ve addressed this.

    And lastly€”whenever I’m sad I just can’t help but smile when I listen to Owl City’s album Ocean Eyes. If you don’t have it, I highly recommend it getting it from itunes!

  68. Rachel P.

    Katie, I can’t imagine how hard it was to post but rather just admitting and understanding the things you’re going through. Thank you for always being so honest and sharing your (and your family) life with so many readers. I just wanted to let you know that I’ll be praying for you. (Chris, Bean, and the new guy too) I know with God he’ll bring you through this stage in life, and he’s preparing you for what’s ahead. Thanks again for being so open with us. I’m sure so many can relate and will offer words of encouragement.

  69. Alyssa

    Katie- You have NO idea how happy I am to read this post. NO IDEA! Ok- happy might not be the right word…I just have a friend that is going through EXACTLY what you describe. 2nd child on the way, $$$ problems, other issues…and it’s been so hard for her. You have NO idea the good you do for others. Your honesty is such fresh air for so many! Thank you for sharing this. I am going to forward this to her immediately. You are not alone. I am willing to bet there are 1000s of women right now that can relate to your post. Probably 10s of thousands.
    I think you are so incredibly strong and you will pull through all of this 🙂 I have so much hope for you…and you should too 🙂

  70. Jessica

    Brave post, Katie! I’m glad you are taking charge again. Depression sucks, but I’m glad you are deciding to acknowledge and deal with it. Good luck to you, as always!

  71. Alicia

    Thank you Katie for posting this! I have also been through a tough couple of years and I am just now starting to come out of it. I lost my job in January 2009 and I didn’t find a new job until September 2010. We had bought our house not even a year before I lost my job. We made it through the rough times and leaned on each other and our families all the while. This time also got us both back into a church regularly and has really strengthened my faith in God. It’s not until after you come through the storm that you truly realize what God did during that dark time. I’ll be praying for you and your family during this time!

  72. Dawndra

    I don’t have the time to share my recent struggles with you (nor do you need to hear them right now…lol), but I understand completely…financial/marital/health/loss/parental responsibilities…everything…at once. While you don’t know me, I still feel for you deeply. My promise to you is to lift you and your family up in prayer. We serve THE MOST HIGH GOD, and I know you know that. I will pray you find peace in Him again. I will pray that you find yourself resting in Jesus. May God bless and keep you and your beautiful family. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  73. Dawndra

    one more thing…Psalm 91…

    read it…soak it up…believe it…know it…feel it. it is His promise to us. His faithfulness over everything evil or harmful that comes our way…His love…

    It’s one of my favorite passages…

  74. Thank you, thank you for sharing this. Know that we folks out here in cyberland are behind you (in a not so imaginary way) and praying for you. In my experience, recognizing that you’re far away from God and simply saying you want to get closer to Him, even if you don’t know how can be enough. When I’m there, I pray with this Third Day song: “Please take from me my life when I don’t have the strength to give it away to you.” All the best to you and your family as you work through this–we’ll be right here with you, cheering you on.

  75. Kudos to you for posting this. It’s really hard to be able to admit something like this, so I know it’s a huge step for you to be able to write about and talk about it. I’ve been through similar situations, and always have such a tough time finally saying “enough, I need some help.” Hopefully you are able to pull yourself out of the hole soon! We’re all here for you!

  76. melissa B.

    Wow! Katie, thank you so much for you honesty. I can only imagine how hard it must have been to write it and publish it. You are right, the first step is to acknowledge it. If you don’t, you can’t work on something you aren’t willing to admit is there. Just allow yourself this time to work through your feelings without the pressure of trying to “fix it”. Follow the action plan you have and take it day by day. But remember, it is a process and it will take some time….rushing or pressuring yourself to solve it won’t help. 🙂 But communication and patience will get you where you want to be and it sounds like your family is listening and supportive. God is good! You think you don’t have the energy to listen to God anymore but it sounds like you have. God is using your family to help you through this….what a blessing.

  77. Mitzi

    Thank you for sharing this. Your posts honestly discuss the tough things about being a parent, wife and human. I appreciate your effort and courage to share this. You rock and good luck finding your way back. One foot in front of the other.

  78. You are a strong woman for posting this and admitting to yourself and everyone else what has been really going on. That, in itself, is why I know you will get through this. As an avid reader, my heart goes out to you, and I wish you the best.

  79. I am sorry to hear that you are having a hard time but happy to know that you can see what it is. That is the first step to being able to address it. This couldn’t have been an easy thing to admit but know that so many people go through similar things. Especially those of us who are extremely hard on ourselves. Luckily there is help out there and you do have a wonderfully supportive family. You will make it through this. I wish you nothing but the best of luck and happy thoughts! Remember one day at a time is all we can expect ourselves.

  80. I’ll tell ya, you have had a rough year. I know i wouldnt have been able to hold up like that for even a month. But your are hadnling everything with grace, beauty and Love.

  81. Beth

    I could have written this myself. I have a toddler and a baby on the way, and sometimes everything just seems so crushingly difficult that it’s hard to know where to start. Just thought I’d let you know you’re not alone.

  82. Jennifer

    Thank you for being brave enough to post about what you are going through. It shows me and others that is okay to admit we aren’t always Superwoman. I will keep you in my prayers.

  83. Lauren

    I’m another recent reader who has never commented before, but thank you for posting this. I’ve had problems with anxiety on and off for years, and went off meds before getting pregnant (I’m about as far along as you) and it’s been really freaking hard and overwhelming at times. I’ve had my husband read a couple of your/Chris’s posts before, and I think this is another one I’ll be sending him. I appreciate you writing about this stuff- it’s been easier to talk to my husband about what’s going on with me when there’s some kind of intro to it, like one of your blog posts. So thanks 🙂

  84. Katie, first of all let me say how much I admire you. This post took so much courage. You are a wonderful example to so many women who are going through the exact same thing but are too scared or ashamed to admit it to anyone, including themselves. Thank you for showing that for those of us who struggle with these same emotions, these same problems, that we are not alone. I struggle with anxiety, I have my whole life, with periods of depression, although never long enough to be “diagnosed” officially. There is no shame in it.
    We do serve a Great and Awesome Lord and He will sustain you through this. Please know that you are in my prayers. Even though I only know you thru your blog, I care for you as I would a friend, more than just imaginary. 🙂 The only advice I can offer is something that has helped me with my anxiety. I can never just “give it up to God”, I’m too much of a control freak for that, I needed to verbalize it to “give it up” to Him. That means reaffirming my faith in Him in that situation. Whatever I am panicking about at that moment, stopping and saying “I trust that God is big enough to….” “…protect me” “..provide for this bill” whatever it is at that moment. It’s helped me.
    Love from a sister in Him, -Jess

  85. Leah

    I’m so glad you posted this, there’s so much in your life I can relate to – espeically how you’ve been feeling and handling your stress. Looks like you’ve received lots of positive feedback. I love reading your blog – I look forward to it! Keep up the good work!

  86. So proud of you for posting this! That took a lot of strength but now you have so many people praying for you and sending good thoughts your way. I am also a people pleaser with incredibly high expectations for myself — and sometimes it can feel so overwhelming and heavy to constantly have so much pressure on yourself. You’re awesome & I’m sure you’ll be out of this funk in no time!

  87. MaryanneD

    I don’t know what to say that hasn’t already been said. Please know that I am praying for you.

  88. Whenever I read your blog, I get the impression that you have it all together really well. As someone who has struggled with anxiety their whole life, I really admire your ability to admit to yourself, and others, what you are going through. I wish you all the best.

  89. Kaitlyn

    Hi Katie,
    This post is incredibly real and honest and I think it’s going to serve as inspiration for young adults and women who read this blog and are dealing with similar things. And based on what I’ve read from you before I know you’re a strong woman and that you’ll make it through this fine. You seem to have a great support system to back you up as well. I always blamed myself for what had gone wrong with my high school sweetheart…but then as I started reading your blog we started working things out thanks to your advice. You’re a wonderful inspiration and I know you’ll be even more awesome as you work through your depression/other struggles. 🙂

  90. Somehow I got to the website and clicked on your blog because you were nominee for best weblog of the year. It’s crazy how I can stumble across things and the medium in which God chooses to reveal things to us, but everything you just posted (minus the being pregnant part) is what I am currently experiencing. My fiance (we get married this saturday) and I moved, we now live in a new area where he has not been able to find a job and finances are terrible. All of the emotions you’ve described here, are thoughts I’ve had in my own mind. It’s good to know that we are not alone, even when we feel like we are. And reading your story and knowing that you are getting out of this and can get out of this, is super encouraging.

    So thanks, for sharing with us this post and for just having this blog that affects people in more ways than one.

  91. Thank you for posting this. I’m so sorry that you’ve been going through this, but I appreciate you sharing. I’ve been going through some similar issues with anxiety and guilt, and I’ve been working through them slowly but surely. I hope you and Chris can keep talking and that you’ll keep digging yourself out.

  92. Jenn

    Just what I needed to hear right now… and I’m not pregnant. I’m just trying to see past what might have been some iffy life decisions and see the good. Thanks Katie. Its nice to know I’m not alone.

  93. Sharilyn

    God has blessed you with a wonderful husband. Thank you for being willing to be so vulnerable. God will use it to touch many!

  94. Katie…I am saying prayers for you…many, many prayers because I know where you are, I have been there myself.

    Much love and blessings,

  95. Thank you so much for sharing! I know what your going through, been there and done that (in some form and fashion). It takes a lot to admit it and then let people help you through it…I know…I hate admitting these kinds of things so much. It makes you feel so vulnerable. But thank you for feeling vulnerable with us through this time. Feel confident that you will make it through to the other side in one, whole (even stronger) piece.
    My husband and I will be praying for you, and for your sweet family.

  96. KaraQ

    Oh dear sweet imaginary friend Katie. You are strong and beautiful and an incredible woman and mother and wife, and heck I don’t even KNOW you other than little glimpses into your life. Thank you for sharing this. Know that there are lots of people out here in the World of the Internets who are rooting for you, who are praying for you, and who have total confidence and faith in you that things will get better.
    It can be big and weird and scary to admit things like this I think. Know that your courage has inspired me as I’m dealing with some of my own issues and working through some depression. You are a positive force on this blog, AND in this world, ma’am. And don’t you forget it!

  97. Great post! I know it must have been had to write and harder to hit publish on, but I hope you are finding comfort in the numbers of how many of us have been in a same situation too. I went through heart surgery this year and then faced a depression afterwards… it’s a scary thing to walk through, and I was really afraid that I wouldn’t return to feeling like “me” again. Slowly (ok… waaaaaaaayyyy slower than I wished) I began to see traces of who I was before. It may take a while, but things will fall back into place and your cheerful, optimistic spirit will return. Thanks again for sharing with us!

  98. Courtney

    Oh Katie I can so relate to your feelings. After my son was born I went through some serious postpartum depression. I was so anxious I could hardly stand it, and I was so afraid of not seeming perfect that I almost lost it. Finally, I admitted I had an issue, and you know, I almost immediately felt better. It was amazing how much just talking about it helped. I admitted that I wasn’t perfect, I wasn’t always in control, and that was okay. In the end I didn’t need medication, but to let myself be just okay. Hang in there and thanks for sharing .

  99. Aimee

    Katie, I wish I had some bit of wisdom, or a word from God for you but I don’t. The truth is that I’m going through a difficult time too. I’m not in the same situation as you, but I am familiar with how it feels to lack hope, and to feel like God’s ignoring your pleas when you cry out to Him. Every day I tell God that I’m not sure it’s worth it. That I’m not sure He’s worth it. And every day I hear Him ask me if I’m willing to stick around long enough to see it become worthwhile. It’s just so hard sometimes. One thing I heard today that really struck me is that God never gives us more than we can hande…with His help. I hope this helps. If not, just realize that you’re not the only one dealing with these kinds of feelings! God does love us and care for us, even if we don’t see it!

  100. Aimee

    Katie, one last thought. I don’t know if you read all these posts or not, but it is very evident to me that God used that post to speak to a lot of people. God has not forgotten you, Katie; in fact He just used YOU to bless many people! In your weakness, He is allowed to shine through.

  101. I’m glad you published this. The posts we’re scared to write and/or post are usually the ones we need to publish the most.

    I hope you feel better soon. I am going through a terrible financial time myself right now and I know that that alone can make everything else in life seem hopeless or impossible or just not worth trying, so I hope you see the light soon.

    And don’t give up on your book!! It’s an amazing gift you’ve been given, just to have that opportunity! (One I am so very remarkably jealous of.) You have a lot to say and a lot of people who find value in what you have to say. You never know, climbing out of this hole may even provide your NEXT book subject, right?

    I’ve been to therapy for depression at several points in my life and it’s always been helpful. I hope you find a way to work this through and do consider talking to a professional (if you have coverage for that, of course).

    Life kicks us around sometimes just to remind us how precious the good times are, I think.

  102. When I read the old testament and the Israelites, who saw God do so many amazing things on their behalf (saved from Egypt, red sea parted, manna provided daily, battles won, etc) and yet they still forgot God’s goodness. In my own life I find myself doing the same, I get hung up on how God will provide for us, or when will thing seem “normal” – instead of trying to figure out the future, I have found that it is best for me to remember how God has worked in the past. He is unchanging, he is all-powerful and faithful. I am hoping that you can see how He has worked on your behalf in this past year and trust in His goodness. I’m so sorry that you’re going through this time. Thanks for sharing.

  103. Tressa

    Oh sweet Katie, thank you for sharing this with us, your friends! I will be praying for you. Keep your chin up!

  104. Angel

    Thank you, Katie. This post is everything I have ben feeling for the last few years. I’m still in a dark place, myself. But I’m glad someone found the words I couldn’t. Just believe in god, your family and yourself. Take the time you need to work things out for yourself. Nothing is ever easy, but I go by a philosphy, Live Well, Laugh Often, Love Much.

  105. Jen Morris

    As a mom, it’s so tough determining what is an acceptable amout of guilt, anxiety, etc. Thanks for your honesty and openness! Your imaginary friends are rooting for you and praying for you!

  106. Mel

    This is my first comment, however i’ve been reading for a while. I really hope you feel better really soon, I know exactly how you feel!

  107. Jenna

    Katie, thank you for posting this … I’m sure it will help others (including myself). I’m saying a prayer for you and your family as you get through this!

  108. Katie, you and I have many similarities. I lost my job and found out I was pregnant two days later. I struggled with intense guilt during my pregnancy because my husband had to work long hours and rarely saw me or our baby son. It was a wonderful time in the sense that I was expecting a new miracle but a terrible time in the financial sense. Our house wouldn’t sell so we lived somewhere I didn’t want to be as well (big similarity there).

    I have struggled with anxiety and depression my whole life. I never thought a depressive episode would creep up during my pregnancy. Especially since I had been so happy during my first pregnancy.

    But I finally realized I had antepartum depression. I finally told my OB and cried for 25 minutes with my husband at my side telling her I knew this was more than just pregnancy hormones. It was depression.

    She prescribed a very low dose of zoloft. I hated to take medication during pregnancy but for me, the benefit outweighed the risk. I started taking it and three weeks later I began to crawl out of the hole that I was in. By the time I gave birth to our second son I was in a really happy and stable place. I thank God for the support of my husband and doctor. Sometimes you just need to be honest with yourself.

    Actually, if you google prenatal depression or antepartum depression you’ll find more people take medication during pregnancy than you’d expect.

    I also saw my OB and therapist regularly to help me manage the depression.

    I hope you start to feel better but if you don’t, please don’t feel bad about getting help for your anxiety and depression. Millions of people suffer with this every day and seek help for it.

    It is NOT a character flaw. There is nothing wrong with you. You are so strong for admitting that something is wrong. That is the first step to getting better.

  109. Jamie

    You are brave and I know you will come out of this braver and stronger. *cyber hug*

  110. Emily

    Hi Katie, you’re inspirational for posting this. Anxiety is flipping awful, but you will get through it and be better for it. Doesn’t it suck that even though it’s part of our brain causing these reactions, we can’t seem to control it? Not fair! But you will get the better of it and reign in your errant subconscious.

  111. Katie, I’m soooo glad you published this post! You made me realize that I have some serious self-reflection to do.

  112. Ah Katie sweetie depression sucks. I’ve dealt with for years. I too go bed to avoid, I don’t talk to friends that I dearly love and I hate it. Bless your heart for being brave enough to own it because you have no idea how many of your readers are probably in the same boat. Womam guilt is abundant, we think everything is our fault. Your intentions for moving closer to your family were nothing but good it just so happened shitty things happened when you got there. Please always remember you have HELP, your parents especially, and Chris. He loves you and he called it!!! I hope he kept calling it. My husband pretty much ignores me and I’m at a point where I could care less, sad isn’t it? I just really don’t care anymore what he thinks. I recently weaned off of a crazy antidrepssant it was hell. But I think I need to find another one. I’ve been getting the soy pellets for hormone replacement and supposedly that sh ould be good enough to relieve depression but apparently it isn’t. I wouldn’t trade lives with anyone else either. I love my family, my grandkids, my bratty teenager whom I adore, even my husband!! Take care of yourself. And soak in the love and support you have, you have no idea how lucky you are to have it, actually you do know.

  113. You are stronger than you know and also incredibly brave. I think a lot of people, including myself, have found ourselves in similar holes and I just want to thank you for your incredible honesty. I still haven’t completely dug myself out my own situation but I am to the point where I can find the joy in the process of getting better. Praying for you : )

  114. Admitting you’re depressed and talking about it is the first step towards getting better. I know you know that. So I’m glad you decided to talk about it.

    I understand how you feel about feeling alone and wondering if God is going to help. I had something devastating happen to me last year and things still haven’t gotten better, but I have. I struggled for awhile, cried a lot, thought about death, but all the while I kept praying and one day God gave me peace. Ever since then, I don’t worry nearly as often as I used to and I believe that God is going to work things out. I’ve placed things in His hands. I can’t fix it, but He can.


  115. Sarah H.

    I think this is the first post where I’ve read EVERY comment. I’m just AMAZED at how wonderful your readers are! I feel like we all need to go out for chips and salsa and a margaritas (virgin of course!) and have a group hug. Everyone just seems so sweet and caring.

  116. Wow. So proud of you for writing this. I struggled with depression last winter and can relate to how you said you just “shut down.” My Mom and husband also tried to tell me many times that I needed to deal with it but I wanted to pretend it wasn’t there and I made up so many excuses. Looking back I think that the hardest thing was just accepting it for what it was. Putting a name to it allowed me to actually begin to work through it. So, what I’m trying to say is, you’re over the toughest part!!!!! You can do this.

  117. Lisa

    One of my favourite quotes is “A misty morning does not signify a cloudy day”, and although things seem a bit dark at the moment, I do have faith that with the support of your family you will overcome this and find a happy medium again. I am sending you a BIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIGGGG cyber hug from Canada!! Wow, there are 103 comments so far, there are a lot of people rooting for you! Thank you so much for your honesty as usual.

  118. Jessica M.

    Katie, Thank you for posting this. I’ve never struggled with depression, but my husband has. Ever since I’ve met him (8 Years ago) there has always been a shadow hanging over him and every now and then I would get a glimpse of Happy Hubby. Just recently he slid into a deeper depression cycle that scared the both of us to the point where I demanded that he get see his doctor to adjust his medication. I give kudos to Chris for being a strong enough husband to stand up and say “Katie, something’s wrong”. Some people choose to ignore their spouses/sig other’s depression symptoms because they don’t want to deal with it themselves or don’t understand that the feelings that depression bring on are truly uncontrollable unless treated. It’s great to see that Chris recognizes the symptoms and is willing to stand up to them. Not you, but the feelings that are causing his Katie to disappear. Kudos to you for listening to him, realizing that something needs to be done and taking preventative measures. You are an inspiration, a wonderful wife and mother. We are truly blessed to have you share this experience with us. Thank you Katie, stay strong!

  119. Lissa

    I just love you to pieces…..brave and amazing.

  120. Sonya

    This had to be so hard to write! I’m praying for you! I’ve been there before and it’s not fun. I’m glad you have some good support to help you through it!

  121. Ann

    Wonderful & inspiring. I’ve been in those shoes before. As many have expressed, a therapist can help so much. (You have so much time for that, right?) After catching our family business’ office/rental house while living there, 3 months into marriage, on fire during a cooking accident, I carried so much of the burden that it caused panic attacks with depression. {We had to move in with my parents… for two months… with our 3 dogs… and “my” bedroom is above my parents bedroom —–> marital bliss!} An anxious depressed person? FUN! My therapist helped me greatly. 4-5 sessions and I was able to go easier on myself.

    Imaginary friends have been through it, too… and will support you through this journey.

  122. Kristin

    Katie–I’ve never commented before, but felt compelled to respond to this post. Thank you for putting yourself out there. I, too, am a perfectionist and people-pleaser, and have discovered over the past couple of years how detrimental those characteristics can be to my mental health! One of my favorite Scripture passages when my anxiety begins to get the better of me is Philippians 4:6-7. Prayers from Alabama that this stage passes quickly & that you will come to know Him better in the process…

  123. Caitlin

    I have read this blog for a while now, and it has always been a pleasure to share in the ups and downs of your family life, but this is the first time I have felt the need to comment.

    Thank you so much for posting this. I have battled with a major depressive disorder on and off for six years, and most of the time nobody else had any idea what was going on in my head. To read your post, and to remember that I am not alone in this (and neither are you) is incredibly empowering.

    The only thing I can reassure you of is that it will get better. You won’t always feel like this. You will get over the feelings of guilt. You will feel connected with your community again. You will find energy and motivation again. It just takes a little time and assistance. So take the time you need and let the people who are close to you (chris, bean, your family, your church group etc) help you through.

    Hug and love from Perth, Australia

  124. I was SO SO SO glad to read this post.

    Which looks funny when I write it, as though I’ve been on the edge of my seat hoping you’d get depression.

    But after watching the bellycast it seemed clear there was something wrong and I’m so glad you’re facing it.

    You’re gonna get better. And you’re gonna start writing again. And I can’t wait to read it.

  125. Maren

    I think most women do have unrealisticly high expectations for themselves and are people pleasers. Something to do with trying to balance motherhood with work. Is there ever a ‘balance’? It’s almost impossible to be the best mother and be the best employee, to do the best for your family and work to help support that family. It’s just hard. And no wonder why so many women struggle with depression or anxiety or just shut down one part of their lives.
    All you can do is the best you can do. And lean on God.
    ‘Do not be anxious about anything. But in everything, by prayer and petition, with thankgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.’ Philippians 4:6
    More particularly the first two sentences…they give me comfort in stressful times.

  126. Dessi

    From one people pleaser to another, here’s a hug!! I know how you are feeling in so many ways!! I have always been the “good kid”, the academic achiever, the one who does things “the right way”. But 2010 has been tough! I got married, bought a house, and then my husband got laid off. School and having children have been put on the back burner since bills are hardly being paid. All of this at 22 for me 🙁 But we have to keep on keepin on!! Reading your blog gives me so much encouragement…so much hope!! With the help of friends and family, I’ll get back on my feel, and so will you!!

  127. Kim

    I haven’t read the other comments, but good for you for recognizing there’s an issue. Good for Chris and your parents for seeing it too and urging you to get some help. Please talk to your doctor. Sometimes these things just spiral even without other life circumstances, which you certainly have. You’re right to try and get a handle on it before the baby gets here, mostly because that will add another wrinkle to an already complicated existence. Talking to a therapist, a doctor, whoever does wonders. At least it did for me. It is such a relief to be able to unload on someone who isn’t a family member. Allows you to take care of yourself more. Hang in there. You’re not alone.

  128. Shelley

    Wow, what a difficult time you’ve had. Notice that’s past tense. Getting it identified and spotlighted is the beginning of erasing it. You’ll feel better when you start tackling each problem. Don’t look at the whole list, one item at a time and take action. The worst IS behind you. Tell Chris to keep his hands off your Halloween candy, damn it!

  129. favorite post and there have been alot of good ones…but this one…..good stuff why I read blogs.

  130. Katie

    As someone who has struggled with depression in the past, and now am facing it again as I fight some health issues, I can say how proud I am of you for admitting that something isn’t quite right. I recommend getting some counseling. I know you attend church, and often pastors can provide some of the best counseling for those of faith. Try speaking with your pastor and see what counseling services they would offer. Your life is good, but sometimes, even when life is overall good, there are some nasty bits that get to you. But, you can do this! You’re in my thoughts and prayers.

  131. Good for you for posting and for wanting to be better than you are. God will not give us more than we can bear. Whatever He gives to go through, he knows you can handle, even if it hurts or stretches a bit. Thank you for sharing. This was very.. thought provoking for me. I love your blog and have been reading for a long time, but haven’t ever commented. I admire you as a strong woman and family; a model of what and who I want to be. Thank you for sharing.

  132. Mandi B.
    First time comment, long time reader.
    Katie, Thank You for being real! Reading about your life keeps me sane. Life is as hard as we make it and how hard usually relates to what we hold as our own private struggles. I’m pulling for you and your family as well as praying that God blesses the pants off of you. My husband is in Afghanistan and although we don’t have kids, I still have days where I feel like everything is weighing down on me and I don’t want to do anything. Nobody is holding a ruler to you and measuring you on your successes or failures. Thank You for your honesty!

  133. Keshet Shenkar

    I think we all have these phases at different points in life–I have moments i can look back on as the worst periods in my life, and eventually they ended. If you are aware of what is going on, that is a big step already towards getting back to who you really are. Thinking of you and loving the reality I always see her on your blog.

  134. I can relate to this post so much. It reminds me of the “Learned Helplessness Theory” that I learned as a psych major. When things go bad repeatedly then you feel like you’ve lost your sense of control and you just stop reacting. It’s been a difficult year for me as well with my boyfriend’s dad passing away and job issues, but I have learned that how your respond to these situations is more telling of who you are as a person then the situation itself. Easier said then done, for sure. My goal for my myself is to try really hard to live completely in the present and let go all guilt from the past. Live each moment in the moment and remember that you are a good person and deserve a good life.

  135. Julia

    Hi Katie, this is my first significant post on your blog, even though I’ve been reading it for almost a year, I think (sorry I’ve been lurking…). I just wanted to tell you though, after reading this post, that I’m so incredibly impressed by you, your character, your strength, your family. Obviously you have a great support network, but to also share this with all of us is inspirational. Your blog has really done me a lot of good over the past year, and has given me perspective and advice and good words that have helped me mature as a woman and as a person. I’ve struggled as well, and having a plan and great support is the best thing you can do to help yourself. And you showing us that you’re going to help yourself is so important, it absolutely will help someone struggling out there help themselves too. Thank you for this. Julia

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  139. […] Marriage Confessions (if you don’t read it, you really should) talks about her bouts with depression, and she a mother. She has way more to be stressed and sad about then me, but I believe everyone […]

  140. Carrie S

    Katie, I am a new reader of yours. I found you through The Pioneer Woman and have been scrolling through your archives ever since. I am so grateful for your honesty and openness in this post. I, too, am a people pleaser who sets ridiculously high standards for herself. Thanks for your transparency. I know God is using you and your blog in many people’s lives (mine included) and I am excited to see how God works in and through you. 🙂 Praying for you!

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