Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Gratitude and Thanks


I sit here watching more gray clouds blow over a choppy lake with a cool breeze*. I suppose some people would be disappointed, it’s vacation! Instead of being out on the beach my kids are feet away from me watching Thomas. I’m not. I am full of gratitude and thanks and feel oh so blessed.

Last Monday Hyacynth  emailed several of Sarah’s friends and asked us to blog about the devastation in Joplin and ask people to pray and donate to The Salvation Army. As I was driving the kids to school that morning I had a crazy idea (I frequently have crazy ideas while driving in the morning) and I called Hy as soon as I got home.

What started as “Can we do something bigger?” turned into Help 4 Joplin.

Friends, can I tell you, two weeks out and I still get goose bumps and tear up thinking about it. 24 hours after asking “Can we do something bigger?” 27 companies, artisans and individuals had donated items. In just over 48 hours we raised  $1,774, collected and paid to the charity within 3 days of closing the auction.

I am still in shock.

I have worked on several different charity auctions including one for a multi-state non-profit that raises well in the 5 figures. Never have they been squared away and finished in 3 days. Not even at the preschool auction...minimum turn around is usually a week. The speed and generosity of the individuals that bid and the companies/artisans that donated simply makes my heart explode. It is truly awe-inspiring.

It has truly changed the way I look at this thing called blogging and the people in this world, it changed Hyacynth too and for that we thank you.


Now at the same time that I was literally buried in the emails and goings on of the auction I got an email that literally made my draw drop open. I was nominated by someone as a Top 25 Mental Health Blog by Moms on Circle of Moms. I was shocked. Someone nominated me? (whoever you are thank you!) But I am just a speck in this blogging world, I mean Heather is on there, Katherine is on there, Aunt Becky, these are amazing writers and advocates for Mental Health.

Then I read Katherine’s post about it and I got it, I did. I also, well kind of agreed.

Then read Miranda’s post about it and I agreed with her too! A lot!

See this stuff we talk about that falls under mental health...its hard to write about. Well I mean it’s easy for me to vomit it on the keyboard. Getting the words out of my head is therapy, a release that keeps me from completing exploding.

But posting them?

Hitting publish?

That's hard. When people you know and see every day, teachers, friends, family start reading your blog, that makes it hard. No one in my family knew about my PPD before the blog (which came almost 5 years after my first struggle). Many members of my family and close friends don’t know about it now. It’s not easy to talk about which is why I “hide” behind my blog. Everyone knew (eventually) about my miscarriage, but very few people knew how much it hurt, how deep, for how long. How it changed me.

But we need to talk about it.

I need to talk about it.

It NEEDS to be talked about.

I have said before the ONLY reason I told my husband what was going on 6 yrs ago. The ONLY reason I knew I was ill, was because someone told their story. I read it in a magazine. I found Postpartum Progress online, I got help.

I write hoping I am that person for someone else.

I hope someone else who has lost a child or suffered from PPD/A will read my words. Read my struggles and my JOY. That they will know what they feel now is not what they will always feel, that it does get better.

So for that reason I am promoting The Top 25 list .

For that reason I am asking you to vote for me, and everyone else on the list, especially those I linked to.

Because we need to talk about it. Even if the traffic is going to someone other site, they are still seeing our words. They are reading about mental illness, they are talking about it, and if we ever want to de-stigmatize it, we need to talk about it.


Two very different things converging on me brain and heart at the same time.

I am filled with gratitude and thanks for both of them, and for you my readers and friends.

Thank You.

*Not really, I’m actually sitting on my bed, next to the cutest baby in the world (fact) who is babbling to me (must get that on video!) hiding form my family and trying to cool off. I started this while on vacation...7 days on vacation and I didn’t have time to finish it until I had been home for 4 days...that’s just the way life is with 3 kids.


Jade @ Tasting Grace said...

It is truly so important to share these experiences, but YES, it is incredibly brave of you to do so too. And very generous and giving, too, to offer that solace to others who might suffer.

It's truly amazing what you all have accomplished with Help4Joplin.

For these reasons, and many more, you definitely have my vote!

Barbara said...

What you have done is not only amazing but inspiring!! I also love your words at the end!! I will go out and vote right now!

This Heavenly Life said...

I am amazed and thrilled that 'something bigger' was SO successful, thanks to you and a lot of truly generous people.

You help people, Melissa - Mentally and Physically and Emotionally -- and I'm grateful for you :)