There’s so much to update everyone on. So much has been going on these past few months that it’s been difficult to get a moment to sit down and share everything with the world.
My focus this year is on health. In fact, it’s my word of the year. The areas of physical, emotional, and spiritual health are imperative to focus on since they have so often been left ignored for other pressing deadlines. Those closest to me know that I have been struggling with severe postpartum depression since my son was born in July of 2014. It’s been the biggest uphill battle of my life, with a whole tribe of medical professionals on board to treat me (therapist, psychiatrist, doctor, secondary consultative counselor, TMS therapy assistants, etc.). The biggest change out of all of this is that I am currently undergoing Transcranial Stimulation Therapy (TMS) under the watchful guidance of a psychiatrist, counselor, and treatment staff. I am about to the half way point with my treatments. The treatments, which I get every week day, last about two hours in length and feel like someone is pounding nails into your skull repeatedly. It’s not fun. It’s not even pleasant. It’s barely tolerable, but, most importantly, it’s working. The treatments basically “wake up” the connections in the brain that are sluggish and often cause depression. As someone who has been clinically depressed since the age of 10, these treatments are opening up a whole new world for me. I wake up and want to get out of bed. I can’t wait to see my son and find myself missing him during the day. My husband and I have a much more intimate and spicy love life. I’m smiling like a fool half of the time and I love it! These treatments have also helped me realize that my depression is mostly biological. I inherited these chemical imbalances in my brain, and they are in no way “my fault,” or the result of anything I have done. I can’t wait to see what 6 weeks into the treatment looks like. For anyone who wants to lessen their antidepressant medications, or who has medication-resistant depression, TMS is the way to go!
Unfortunately, TMS also comes with a hefty price tag. It hasn’t been approved yet by the Food and Drug Administration, and is, therefore, considered to still be an “experimental” treatment. The six week set of treatments runs about twelve thousand dollars, and that price quote does not include current medication costs, doctors visits, or therapist/counselor sessions. My course of treatment costs have literally replaced my dream of earning my doctoral degree. The money has gone to TMS instead of the local university. And I’m okay with that. If my quality of life is a million times better, and I have peace and happiness the majority of the time, then trading in one dream for another is not such a bad trade off.
To help pay for costs related to TMS, and to start a vacation fund, I’ve started a new business venture. I’m a Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant with full advanced color certification. I have an extensive inventory. I have business cards. I’m being trained by some of the ladies who trained directly under Mary Kay Ash herself. I am the real deal. And the thing is I absolutely love it! I’ve met so many inspirational, empowering women through Mary Kay. I am enjoying learning about areas that I know nothing about. The subject of how marketing can make or break you really fascinates me. I’ve met women who started with nothing and now earn a 6 figure income because of their Mary Kay marketing strategies that they use with their clients. I love making women feel beautiful and special. As someone who went to a women’s university, I firmly believe that all women have something valuable to bring to the table. I can’t wait to see where this new adventure leads me!
Lastly, there have been some changes on the spiritual front that have been a long time coming now. I will continue to attend synagogue with my Jewish husband and son, but I am returning to Christianity. At the time of my conversion to Judaism, I felt incredibly pressured to convert to make my husband happy. I thought it was something I could do for him. But, I’ve come to realize over time that conversion to anything is something that I need to do for myself. I don’t feel honest calling myself a Jew when I know full well that my beliefs don’t entirely align with Judaism. I am tired of living a lie. It’s not fair to me or the people in my life. However, I will do everything that I can to make sure my son has a Jewish upbringing and home. We will celebrate all of the Jewish holidays, make the traditional Jewish foods, and will send him to a Jewish summer camp. I will get up before the sun to drive him to Memphis during his primary school years so he can attend Hebrew school on Sundays with other Jewish children. He will have a bar mitzvah at our temple and I’ll be a ball of mush as I remember his naming ceremony like it was yesterday. My son will have a strong Jewish identity like his father. I am so proud of them both for being who they are. Our synagogue community is so very close to my heart and the members are some of the most cherished people in our lives. It will be okay to have a Christmas tree and a menorah in our home this holiday season, and, for that, I finally have peace.
I’ll be sure to update you all at the 6 week mark for my TMS therapy. Great things are happening!!!