Show some love for Lauren, today’s submission writer! Lauren is a sassy, outspoken, laughing, football, coffee, and bacon addicted Mama blogging about Postpartum Mood Disorders as she tries to figure out her new place in this world. C’mon along for the ride, won’t ya? She blogs at My Postpartum Voice and you can find her on twitter @unxpctdblessing
I have been a writer my entire life. I started when I was six years old, maybe younger. My first short story was about a brother and sister lost in the Australian outback. Of course the setting relied heavily upon the family’s Britannica description of Australia because way back then, Google wasn’t even a glint in Sergey or Larry’s eyes.
As any writer does, I wrote. A lot. I flourished in English classes, even majoring in English Literature in college. Everyone gushed about my writing. Teachers, professors, parents, friends, the whole kit and caboodle. For me, writing was breathing. It was natural, it flowed, even when it wasn’t technically correct (I struggled with grammar) but the artistry and fluidity of my stories made up for any bumps in the grammar.
Eventually my writing transformed into a movement after the birth of my second daughter. My writing provided a voice for me as I struggled to avoid another episode of Postpartum Depression. I began to blog during my pregnancy with my son. My voice grew louder, my words were fearless, and I enjoyed the development of this new-found part of myself.
Then, in the summer of 2011, my entire life turned upside down as a result of divorce. I raced back into a dark hole and feared speaking up. I had no words to share, they fled like ants from a magnifying glass every time I reached for them. For the first time in my blogging endeavor, I was without the very thing which had propelled me forward from the very beginning. My tank was empty. Not even fumes remained.
I had no voice. A voice is not possible if it is not fueled with words.
One of my favourite songs for motivation is “Lose Yourself” by Eminem. The chorus goes like this:
“You better lose yourself in the music, the moment
You own it, you better never let it go
You only get one shot, do not miss your chance to blow
This opportunity comes once in a lifetime yo
I’ve spent the last year lost in the moment.
This last year? It’s been my India. My sabbatical. My chance to dig around inside my soul and figure out just what it is I am made of – and this year – it’s my chance to show you.
I am done being silent. I am done with staring at a blank page at WordPress, wondering if anyone will want to read what I have to say now. I am done with thinking that just because my circumstances have changed and I’m not the person I was when I started this advocacy –that my words don’t mean anything. They do.
This is my year to take my own advice and celebrate MY journey after Postpartum Depression –to show instead of remain silent. Every journey is different, I say, and every journey is beautiful. Just because my story has a few left turns and a few wild right ones doesn’t mean that it’s not worth telling – if anything, it makes it MORE valuable.
Eminem’s song ends with this sentence:
“You can do anything you set your mind to, man.”
Yes, I can.
This year, my mind is set on the following:
To blog more, to be more transparent, and to finally find my new voice.
Let’s do this.