Home is Where We Are Together

I wanted to share a quick layout and thank everyone who sent their kind thoughts, prayers, comments, and messages over the last week. I couldn't believe the response I had after my last post. {I didn't know that many people even read my blog...}

Seriously, though, I shared my struggles with grief, depression, anxiety, and pain because I wanted to stop hiding in my shell. I hadn't realized how heavy that thing was. I've been lugging it around so long I hadn't realized how much it was weighing on me.

I can't leave behind that security all at once, so I'm doing it piece by piece. It's a journey I am only just beginning and will likely be one I am on for the rest of my life. You can't just change your personality. I am not going to suddenly like getting up and singing karaoke {and trust me, no one else would like that either}. But by whittling away at it, I can break free enough to step out as the person I've been hiding, too worried about what others think to let the girl inside the shell out.

Maybe a part of me will still be reading the person I'm talking to, certain they're thinking I should shut my mouth because no one cares what I think, but I hope that someday a stronger part of me will stand up to that part of me and tell her to shut the hell up because I have worth: ideas, thoughts, feelings, and emotions, and they are just as valid as anyone else's.

What I hadn't realized was how a post that was so brutally honest, written at a time when I felt raw, would actually affect others who needed to know that they weren't alone. That makes me feel so humbled and thankful...something I can't really describe. It gives a reason to some of the "why's" that have haunted my mind. I have long lived by the motto "Everything happens for a reason."

Through the emails and messages I got from people I didn't even know, expressing their thanks at being "brave" enough to bring stigmatized topics into a public forum, I went from feeling pretty down to feeling uplifted, like I had done at least one person some good. Indeed, from a couple of the emails, I was truly astounded that something I had written had touched them so deeply.

Someone messaged me saying they felt that things happen for a reason, and that they needed to see my post at that moment in their lives. Others who had gone through their own trials, young and old alike. I was so thankful that they reached out to me, and for all the kind words and prayers and hugs that have been sent my way, I am also thankful.

In other news {the only other kind of news: scrapbooking news!} I took this pic of my boys last year and it's still one of my favorites. Home is wherever they are! I scrap on a budget, so I'm always looking for interesting pieces I can use on my layouts. The branch below the chipboard was the stem from the bottom of the leaves. I snipped off the larger leaves and used the very top by my flower, and the stem for a little added interest above my journal spot. I used some blue ink on the patterned papers to bring the blue into the background, and added little glitter dots at intersections on the graph-type paper.

In personal news, I've been super busy lately with a bunch of projects in the works. My Etsy shop exploded last weekend and I have to get more kits ready, take their photos, upload them into Etsy, then package them. I'm also working on a wedding album for a cousin, and it's been fun to find elements and embellishments in the bride's colors. I think I might have to offer albums on my Etsy shop, because it's been a lot of fun {though very time consuming}.

I hope everyone has enjoyed their weekend, and have a great week!

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Thanks for all your kind comments!