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I am so thankful for each one of you who has offered your encouragement. It truly means much to me. I honestly don’t find it easy to share my struggles with others, I tend more toward the pull up your boot straps and take a positive outlook side of things, but I know that we weren’t created to walk alone. So I thank you for sharing my struggles as well as my joys.

I am finding that it is really helpful for me to have a plan for ways to help make the bad days…better. Mind you, these aren’t cure all ideas nor do they get to the root (I won’t even get into that:); these are more what I suppose could be called ‘coping’ strategies and my hope is that I will be able to cope well until everything else levels out.

Exercise: I have been forcing myself with Dan’s help to go for a brisk walk at least once a day. Even when I don’t want to, I find that it does amazing things.

Fresh air and sunshine (Vitamin D): With Aneliese, I basically lived outside in our yard and garden. Here because there is a lot less sun as it is winter, I am upping my vitamin D a lot in addition to getting outside.

Music: Generally, I really enjoy a varied style in music but on bad days some styles and even keys send my nerves through the roof so I have specific artists and songs that I know won’t jar and that are particularly hope filled for me.

Thoughts: Often I really have to force myself to think of other things and to not obsess about how I am feeling or lies that I am believing. It really helps to replace those with truths that I know.

Time alone: I am finding that if I take time to recharge that I can often catch myself. Lately, I have been using that time to write or walk.

One goal: Because I tend to set the bar high for myself in terms of what I want to accomplish in a day, I have been choosing one goal and allowing that to be a success.

Beauty: It is so important to keep seeing beauty in life even if that is drawing simple pictures or playing fairies with the girls.  My camera has been such a blessing lately because it is simple set up (many of the things that I do aren’t), it is something new, and has no pressure. It has been really refreshing how taking pictures often helps me view things differently.

Meal Plan/Snacks: This is something that I have said many times that I need on a good day especially when I am pregnant or nursing. For me, inconsistent eating or hunger leads to blood sugar levels spiking and dropping; simply put, it just doesn’t work for me not to have food planned regularly through the day.

Sleep: I am learning to go to bed if I am tired, even if it means going when the girls do!

Internet/Computer: Sometimes, I just need to turn it off and that is almost an instant mind clearer.

Smile, Laugh, and Play: It may sound silly but sometimes I just forget. I don’t see it as being fake because I am making a choice to do what I know really is with in.

Prayer: This is what I turn to through out all of the above; even if all I can ask is a simple, “help”, that is most often how I get through.

And just because this brought joy today:

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