The Pathology of Silence and Patrick Kennedy’s Courage to Break It

There is a silent code within many families, and it is not in relation to one’s status or wealth.

I am referring to the pathology of silence that encompasses a family when mental illness or addiction is present.

Don’t tell. Don’t share. It makes us (the family) look bad.

Patrick Kennedy bravely broke through the conspiracy of silence by sharing his own struggle with mental illness and addiction in a profound and heartwarming segment on 60 minutes. Watch Here.

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When We Box Each Other In

Boxes are so tidy. You can see all sides. They are one-dimensional and really there isn’t much more to say about them. It is what it is.

The same is true when we do that with people, this putting people in boxes.

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Are You Afraid Of Change?

In the middle of a frigid Minnesota winter it is not uncommon to see kids in shorts or at a bus stop without a coat, because they think it is somehow uncool to wear a coat.

My teenagers are notorious for this. I stand in the foyer and holler with my hands waving in the air, “Can’t you see it is WINTER outside? It is freezing! Put on your coat!” Before I know it they are out the door in only a sweatshirt and shorts, clueless and unwilling to accept the fact that it is winter and it is cold.

Have you ever been in a season of your life like this?

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When Adults Take Away A Child’s Fun…

Wood chips and long silver slides.

These are the first things I recall when I fondly think of the recesses of my youth. There were days I wasn’t picked for kickball and days where someone made fun of my Michelin man snow suit.

There were even days when I felt alone and left out.

And, I learned many great lessons on the various playgrounds I spent time on. What I also know is that I was an extraordinary hyperactive child and recess and gym were my outlets.

It was my outlet and my creative space. I could push through those huge doors and run free at the sound of a bell.

It was the only time where someone wasn’t telling me what to do, or to slow down and be quiet.

My youngest son is in the fifth grade and this freedom has been taken from him. His school decided (without the help of the PTO) to fix what wasn’t broken.

Recess.

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The Most Valuable Tool You Can Offer Your Child

I am kneeling next to his bed, where he is submerged under two big soft blankets. My sweet 11 year-old boy.

I ask him, “Will you forgive me?”

Me, the mother who vowed she would never be like her mother, earlier in the night repeating patterns that broke me as a child. Repeating the fighting and the biting words to my husband, loud and boisterous for all the house to hear. And he ran to his room sobbing, his chest heaving in deep cries.

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Share Your Story #METOO

When I bought my last bathing suit, I didn’t think much about it. I have four kids who love the pool and I needed a suit. Simple.

Somewhere in the back of my mind, I guess I thought it might help me blend in (or dare I say, disappear?) at the local pool where it can feel like all of us Moms are in a sorority pledge line-up.

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The Dam Issue of the Tissue

She sits in the chair, her head hung low, the tears falling so quickly they land, not on her cheeks, but on her shaking arms. Her pain so palpable you can feel it in the small room, you can see it in the bodies of those witnessing and watching her sob. Often the others in the group shift in their seats, wanting something to interrupt the sounds of her cries, something to make them more comfortable as they watch her cry, watch her pain, and see her let it out.

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What Makes You Enough?

What makes you enough? "I realized I would rather follow my heart, even if it is really hard, that is worth taking a risk on.” Says Michael John, an aspiring Magician on this season’s America’s Got Talent. "These might be the most important 90 seconds of my life so...

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When You Feel Like You Have Lost The Wind For Your Sails

Wind keeps sailboats moving in the direction determined by the stern or the bow or the skipper. I know nothing about sailing, so I just picked these words since they are sailing words.

I do know that the wind is necessary and crucial for sailing.

I have lost the wind.

I can’t find it in the morning. I can’t find it in the evening.

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The Lifesaving Skills Pixar’s New Movie ‘Inside Out’ Is Teaching You And Your Children

I came into the world screaming with a voice meant for outdoor sporting events and an energy level rivaling a teenager filled with Red Bull.

With this gregarious personality also came a sensitive little spirt that was hell-bent on rescuing every wounded animal. This was how God made me, but it didn’t quite fit into the tidy world where “ladies” were supposed to be polite and quiet. And ladies were NOT supposed to be bubbling over with buckets of tears.

What would have helped me? What would have possibly prevented me from a life of compartmentalization, an eating disorder, and depression?

A movie like ‘Inside Out’.

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The Antidote To Stress

I have a friend, who when she signs in at our elementary school for a visitor pass, instead of writing the date on the pass or on the sign-in sheet just writes…Today.

Today.

Not the date or the time. Today.

She says it is because all she can think about is today, that it is too complicated to put the date, the time or the moment.

I see it differently, I see it as a beautiful reminder of living in the moment. This moment we have right now…is simply today.

Today is all we have in front of us.

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