Today isn’t my typical day to post but I’ve been in a canning flurry lately. The garden and produce stands are booming! Gotta take advantage of it 😉
You guys seem to love the poems I share so I thought I’d share a recent one. It’s hot off the press haha just scribbled it down last night.
This poem expresses a lot of what I’ve been feeling lately as a mother and just as a woman in general. In this I’ve folded in several topics. Work ethic, time, serving others and confidence are the themes here.
In spite of the business of life, I am content and I am happy just being me.
As I said in my last post, May is Mental Health Awareness month. And it seemed like the perfect time to talk about some important topics.
Stemming from the subject of mental health is a variety of topics. Mental health can be everyday stuff. It can be things like phobias, or illnesses like OCD, depression, panic disorder, anxiety. The list goes on.
And I just want to say…I am not a mental health expert. I only know what I’ve experienced. This series of poems on mental illness are meant to bring awareness and share what these things really feel like.
It’s hard. It’s hard to live with. It’s hard to share. And if you or someone close to you struggles with mental illness, then you know exactly what I mean and where I am coming from.
Today’s poem is about anxiety and panic attacks. The very words “panic attack” steal fear into the hearts of people. They don’t know what to say about it. They are…unsure. Uncomfortable.
And it’s ok.
It’s ok. But for the people that don’t know, and maybe want to know…and yet don’t, I wrote this poem. It is a description of a small piece of my world when anxiety comes in and erases much of what I know.
I’m invisibly visible
You see me
And now you don’t.
You see me
And I’m fine
But you can’t feel
And yet you don’t.
Fear makes fear
And so you turn
Afraid it is contagious.
Afraid you’ll catch my pain.
And though I crave
I hope you never know
Important Note: If you or someone you love is dealing with intense anxiety and/or panic attacks, it is important to remember these 2 things: 1) you are not alone and 2) there is help for you. You can call the suicide hotline: 1-800-273-8255. You can call your doctor and get on a prescription, you can call your mom, your spouse, your bestie. You can dig down deep and find therapies and healthy ways to cope. There is help, I promise. And it will, it will, it will get better☺
Letting go has never been easy for me. I hold too tightly, keep myself from change.
But in knitting…
If you hold too tightly, if you don’t let go, then you will never make a stitch. You can’t make any kind of progress at all.
It’s a simple enough concept, but I keep coming back to it. When I started knitting, my kids were sick with the flu. My son got it first. He was so sick. Sick with a high fever every night until Advil calmed it down.
Holding tight to our babies-that’s what mamas do best. I’m not suggesting letting go in any sense.
But for me, I had to let go of the fear. The worry of, “Will he be ok??”. I wasn’t in charge of his healing. I had to trust that my prayers of petition to God and my limited ministrations would get him through.
And he did. He got over the flu. In spite of my fears and the paranoia fed by constant news updates telling me how horrible the flu is for children. (Thanks NBC.)
But back to knitting. I know I’ve been talking about knitting a lot. And that’s just because I’ve been doing a lot of it.
On vacation I knit square after square. It’s so grounding and therapeutic and easy to do while riding in the car, visiting with family. As a person who fidgets, knitting is bomb.
When I began learning how to knit, my work was a tangled mess. My stitches were loopy. I couldn’t figure out the direction of the needles. I would get nervous once I had formed thread on the needles, dreading letting go. Dreading the wrong stitch.
Isn’t that just how life is? We don’t want to mess up. So we hold on to things. We hold on and hold on, telling ourselves,”I can’t do that. I don’t want to fail. I don’t have what it takes”.
But that’s wrong. I’m in the wrong for thinking that. I can’t is powerfully debilitating.
It can cripple your life.
Your desire to grow.
To be a stronger & better version of you.
I’m not saying that who you are is not good enough. No, never.
What I mean is that you will fulfill whatever prophecy you proclaim for your life.
If it is “I can’t do that“, then you won’t.
If it is “I’m afraid to try“, then it will keep you from new experiences.
I say these things from experience. I say them because I’ve believed “I can’t” about things for far too long. Because I’ve allowed fear instead of a desire to be vulnerable and different and broken to pervade my life. To control me.
“They’s something kindo’ harty-like about the atmusfere
When the heat of summer’s over and the coolin’ fall is here…
But the air’s so appetizin’; and the landscape through the haze
Of a crisp and sunny morning of the early autumn days”
-From When the Frost is on the Punkin, by James Whitcomb Riley.
The beautiful month of October is here. In my corner of the globe in the Midwestern US, this means that fall is in full swing.
It is a time of harvest. Of slowing down. Of bidding summer goodbye. Of bonfires and cozy sweaters. Crunchy leaves.
In my mind, I see the green landscape slowly fading from green to autumn hues. Some plants, like my basil, are fading fast as the days and nights grow cool.
And others, like a plant I’ve recently learned about, are still in their prime.
It is a goal of mine to learn more about plant life. I want to know the names of everything. What they look like, where they are found, if they are edible. I want to learn as much as possible about the green world around me.
And so I wanted to share a plant I found that has a few interesting qualities.
This is frost aster. It’s Latin name is Symphyotrichum pilosum or Aster pilosus. Why 2 names?
“As if to keep things fun and interesting botanists have decided to split up the genus Aster and there is now another genus, Symphyotricum. Consequently a newer name for A. pilosus is Symphyotricum pilosum.”
Frost aster has alternate, smooth edged leaves that are long, thin and pointed.
It has composite flowers, with yellow disk florets (center) that change to redish-purple or redish-brown and 15-35 white ray florets that surround the disk florets.
This plant is quite tall, at least 4′ before the stems began to lean over. This is a bit taller than what most sources say this plant’s height range is but it’s likely so tall because it is a more mature plant.
As far as I can see the answer is no. However, according to sources listed on Common Sense Homesteading, in the past the heath aster (not frost aster, see below) was used by Native Americans in teas, lotions and to “create a herbal steam” in a sweat lodge. Kinda like a herbal sauna. Sounds cool. Always secretly wanted to try the whole sweat lodge experience.
Two facts of interest:
Frost aster is aptly named because it continues to bloom into the frosty days and weeks of autumn long after other plants and flowers are spent.
For this reason, many insects rely on this plantfor nourishment. I saw quite a few honeybees and bumblebees browsing busily amongst the flowers.
Also Frost Aster?
I found another plant that seemed to be similar to the frost aster. But it was much smaller and looked a bit different.
I did a bit of research and narrowed it down to 2 kinds of aster.
Symphyotrichum lateriflorum (also called Aster lateriflorus)or calico aster?
Symphyotrichum ericoides, (also called Aster ericoides) or heath aster?
I decided it was heath aster because it had:
very short, narrow leaves
a bushy appearance, very short. It reminded me of rosemary somewhat.
no colorful flowers like described for the calico aster.
I enjoyed learning more about this unique plant. Isn’t it amazing how much variety and beauty there is in the world?
I’ve been looking through old poems and came across the one I wanted to share today. Well. I didn’t want to share it initially. I felt the nudge, the push to share it but I fought it for awhile.
This poem means a lot to me. It was written in my early 20’s not long after my Grandpa passed away. I was already familiar with depression. But this was different. This was worse. I was dating my (later-to-be) husband and the joy of our relationship was a deep feeling in itself. In spite of this I found it difficult to balance my emotions.
There is no correct formula in life. But sometimes I like to sit down and ask myself deep questions, figure things out. This is how much of my poetry is written and I imagine other poets might think the same.
I enjoyed sharing my other poem “Nothing Is a Mystery” (you can read about that post here) so I thought I would share another. I need to get back to writing more poetry so I can share some recent ones.
We have had an insane amount of rain lately. At times one of my old poems comes to mind as it did today. So I wanted to share it. It is truly from yesteryear…written over a decade ago in my teen years. I did alter it slightly for clarity.
This poem is about storms, mysteries and my relationship with my Heavenly Father.
Welcome to my site! My blog is a great way to share ideas about what I’m doing, Blogging has given me an outlet to forget everything in the past that gives me anxiety. The biggest passion in my life is my relationship with Jehovah.