Happy Mother’s Day?

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I’m trying really hard to make today’s post about mental health; something full of knowledge, experience, resources. But I also feel that, in chronicling my journey toward mental health – that is, out of depression – many of my posts have been depressing themselves. On this banner day of Mother’s Day, I feel like I should be all full of flowers and fairy dust.

I’m laying in bed, exhausted, freezing from the night sweat my hormones gifted me, snorking from an allergy attack that will most likely turn into a sinus infection, listening to the rain steadily thrum the window above my head.

And yet, I returned from the bathroom earlier to find two of my daughters lined up, positively vibrating with the creative joy they couldn’t wait to unleash in the form of scrolls and paintings and cards. The best gift, though, was my five year-old shaking and giggling, burying her head in my lap when I told her how much I liked her portrait of me. Her pride, her modesty, her shyness, her beatitude. My eyes welled up – and I realized Mother’s Day could end right there and I’d be whole.

It is the unexpected joy that is the best – especially in the midst of struggle. It is most certainly unexpected then, and therefore, even sweeter. As acute as the suffering is, the joy is crystalline clear.

I realize that life continues on a parallel, sometimes intersecting, track with depression. It cannot be separated out. But it also cannot crowd out all positive experience. Life happens despite it. Even happiness and poignant moments can happen in spite of it.

So Happy Mother’s Day. May you have a bright spot in the midst of your trials.

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8 Comments

  1. Sheri

     /  May 12, 2013

    Here’s to imperfect progress–a gradual improvement of mood and attitude despite life’s natural ups and downs.

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    • Jennifer Butler Basile

       /  May 12, 2013

      imperfect progress. That’s a great title for a modern myth I may have to write. There’s a reason Sisyphus and I have a love/hate relationship!

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  2. It’s all a mix isn’t it; best to you and love

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  3. Little Mighty

     /  May 12, 2013

    Sometimes you laugh, sometimes you cry. It’s all part of life and our existence, but it’s wonderful to be able to feel. Savor the joyous times and remember them when you might feel low. Happy Mother’s Day to you as well. Beautiful post.

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    • Jennifer Butler Basile

       /  May 13, 2013

      “It’s wonderful to be able to feel” – I’ll have to remember that.

      Thank you.

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  4. I got a portait too and loved it! Now 6 did the same thing, got all shy.

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    • Jennifer Butler Basile

       /  May 15, 2013

      What a sweet response, isn’t it? It just endeared her to me even more!

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