Friday, August 30, 2013


Since my last post was rather sad and serious I thought I needed to cheer things up a bit on here! 
So here is a bit of random cuteness from when I was trying to take a good picture of Justin and I together with my iPod. 

A BIG BIG BIG thankyou to all the people leaving comments on my post about my struggle with anxiety,  and to those sending me messages and emailing me with words of encouragement! You guys are AWESOME! I was tearing up over your kind words! 


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Thursday, August 29, 2013

An Honest Post About My Struggle With Anxiety Disorder

I prefer not to do very serious posts, but I feel compelled to write.

I was recently with some people who were getting into a heated debate and I asked them to please stop, since arguing/raised voices/yelling scares me greatly and WILL cause a panic attack. I was made fun of… Later on when I said I did not want to go to an event that had great potential for yelling and arguing I was told “oh come on-grow up” in a very annoyed tone.

People just don’t get it. Or don’t want to get it.

There are only two options, either I am lying when I say I struggle with Panic/anxiety disorder and agoraphobia or I am telling the truth. There is no other option. One must accept that I struggle with this disorder- that I CAN'T CONTROL, or I am the biggest liar they know.  

Living with panic/anxiety disorder is AWFUL. Living with the agoraphobia is almost worse. 
The agoraphobia causes me to have severe anxiety and panic attacks regarding certain places/situations. The agoraphobia makes it hard to leave my apartment, it makes it nearly impossible to go to church- it causes me to isolate myself. I only feel safe in my apartment. 
This is a miserable existence, and one I am trying to change. 

Church attendance has been the toughest. I had a very bad panic attack at our church last fall. I was literally on the floor in the kitchen area sobbing and hyperventilating- and terrified that someone would find me like that. I remember after the panic attack ended I thought to myself very calmly, "I NEVER want to come here ever again,"  
And since then I have only been to church a few times. 

Believe me, I have tried to go, with my health problems it has made it difficult. But even on the days I feel physically ok, I have been dressed and ready to go and have had a terrible panic attack as soon as I leave my home. Because panic attacks are so draining and cause me to feel incredibly sick, that usually is the final straw that breaks the camel's back. 

I cannot describe to you how many times my husband has left me to go to church, and I am sobbing because my anxiety won. I cannot tell you how many times I have felt like the worst Christian on the face of this planet because of this problem. 

So, when people think I am faking/lying it really frustrates me. 
You DON'T KNOW what I am going through. You DON'T KNOW what it feels like to have all the walls closing in on you, you DON'T KNOW what it's like to feel trapped, in danger and the intense need to escape the situation- when you are SITTING in a building. You DON'T KNOW how sick a panic attack can make me. You DON'T KNOW what it feels like to question whether something is wrong with you and if people secretly hate you. You DON'T KNOW what it's like to have people tell you that panic disorder is simply a "sin problem" and "you are just an emotional basketcase" 

I am trying to fight my anxieties, I honestly am...but it's hard. It's a battle I have to fight every single day. It's a battle that never seems to end, and severely limits my enjoyment in life. 

Every day I thank God for Justin, he has been such a constant comfort and a source of peace and safety. I know he does not look down on me when I have a panic attack, I know he tries to actively help me beat them. We have had small victories here and there, but it takes time. I want to give up and just retreat into my realm of isolation more and more. I feel like the biggest failure between my anxiety and my health problems-Things I cannot control. I am thankful Justin is there to pull me out of these dark times.

I feel compelled to write this for those out there who may also be struggling with anxiety. I know how you feel. 

hopefully my next post will not be so dreary...
with love, 
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Sunday, August 25, 2013

My Mom's 50th Birthday- SURPRISE!!!

My mother turned 50 yesterday! We threw her a surprise party for her this past weekend. 
The surprise was a total success! She had no clue we what we were up to! 
Anyways, on Saturday afternoon my grandmother took my mom out to do some "birthday" shopping. As soon as Grandma's car was no longer visible everyone started scrambling to set up and decorate!   

My grandparents bought balloons! 

Setting up the tables

We didn't know where to put the my cousin Elisabeth and I hung it on the


Here we see two examples of the mysterious male human species doing what they call "decorating"


They had wrapped this banner around the basketball pole...ok....

Kitty showing off the headband our sister Stephanie made for her.

Collin and Kitty

"When is Mommy coming back????"

Collin said he HAD to have a hat matching his shirt.

brother and sister...awww how sweet

Justin! <3 

The party guests waiting for the birthday girl

Hey look it's my sister and I! 

Here is the birthday girl!


Hugging her dad

Mrs. E

Divya giving my mom a birthday hug!

Malini and Michele giving my mom big hugs! 

Michelle's daughter Melissa joined the hugging party

I am so glad we surprised her! 

Yes...we regretted giving them those horns within five seconds...

All you heard was those horns! 

Brandon gets a hat too! 

Grandma said that mom needed a hat too

And a birthday horn! 

awwww...such a cute birthday girl

Time for the yummy food! 

We had picnic foods...sooo good!

My cousin Elisabeth (fondly know as Lisbeth), our Grandpa and my brother Jeremiah

Did I mention that the food was amazing?

Brandon, Mom and Marina. Years ago (long before I even existed!) my mom worked at a bank and Marina was one of her co-workers and ended they up as life-long friends. 

Everybody enjoying the meal

Lisabeth and Kitty!

My brother Brandon

The cake! 

Jeremiah and Mom, he is catching up to her! I bet he will be taller than her by next summer...

Blow out the candles! 

Time for gifts! 

Justin had picked out the perfect card for my mom...

She LOVES Hoops and Yoyo! 

Justin and I gave her a Jane Austen book collection. 
Opening more gifts!

Michelle had made a cross-stitch for my mom! 

The kids REALLY wanted to help lol

My mother received more books! 

Brandon gave our mom a computer chair...Caleb said he was "already using it to sit!"

Grandma M., Kitty, Marissa, Jehan, Caleb and Matt roasting marshmellows

They burned more marshmallows then they ate though! 

We had a great time at my mom's surprise party, I told her she better plan to stick around for another 60 years! :) 

God bless, and a BIG Happy Birthday to my wonderful mom! 

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