Rejuvenation

Originally written August 10, 2015

As I go into this week, I am coming out of a funk. Don’t know all of the whys, but 6 weeks into summer, I found myself in a place I’ve never been before. Depressed and even worse for me, lacking any passion.

We have been having a great summer that has included several weekend getaways with family and the girls enjoying sports camp. The week after camp was going well. We went to our first movie ever – the perfect one – Inside Out. I took the girls to the mall and Savanna braved getting her ears pierced for her birthday. Chelsea followed along (for her 2nd and final time.) We also went to PA for a fun day with my sister-in-law and nephew at a water-park type pool. We even made it to the gym everyday.

Then Monday came and I felt I had been stripped of everything. I had no energy. No motivation. No passion. So I resorted to doing the bare minimum for the girls. This meant lots of meals in, playing inside, and doing art projects while the girls watched all their favorite shows. The next week went the same. And also included no drive for my current or any new projects.

Everyone has days and weeks like this, right?

The next week brought added challenges as My husband had a hectic work week which meant him leaving early and coming home after bedtime several days. This week is when I think I hit my rock bottom in parenting. Not feeling well-rested or capable of responding to difficult
behaviors, I let go of all of my parenting philosophies. Gone. Traded them for irrational expectations and very little patience. Because of this, I did and said things I will never be proud of.

At first I held it in. Hoping that things would just get better. Trusting my drive and passion for parenting and life would come back. Days passed. And nothing changed.

So of course I continued to internalize everything and do that awesome self-deprivation thing. You know, doing everything for everyone else to ensure that what people saw on the outside didn’t match what I was feeling on the inside.

One evening, we had people over for dinner and after they left I felt the need to surrender. To stop pretending and admit defeat. To acknowledge that I was in a really hard place. So I cried and yelled and listened as I raised my white flag and shared my rock bottom with My husband. It felt so good to let it out. It was all a beautiful release. At least for me it was. Jeff likely has a very different reality and I am learning to accept that this, too, is okay.

Later that week we were scheduled to be away for a long weekend. We met my brother and sister-in-law and their 10 month old and spent 4 days in Solomon’s. Perhaps by divine intervention, I left my phone at home. Although initially I felt naked, it didn’t take long to get used to not having it. It was very freeing and allowed me to be fully present wherever I was and with whatever I was doing. I felt so tuned in and connected. As if the connection was all I was really missing in the first place.

We had a couple of perfect days on the water. There’s something incredibly powerful about being out on the water when you are so thirsty for rejuvenation. Hearing the kids belly laugh as we crashed
over waves, watching their enthusiasm with tubing and playing in the sand brought a desperately needed feeling of joy.

I have been doing other things to take care of myself and am enjoying coming back up to the surface. Still some more work to do; but I’m excited to be getting my passion and drive back and that’s a good start. Progress not perfection.

Maybe we need the hard times and the release. Maybe with out the hard times and eventual healthy release, we become complacent and miss out on the opportunities to rejuvenate. I don’t know.

———

The writer in me had grand plans to write a post all about the last few weeks and my full circle moments since separating from My husband. As usual, God had other plans. I am sharing this post from back in 2015 and will be sharing many “new” posts that have been tucked away among lots of junk in my Gmail account. Some I forgot I even wrote, so they are just as new and fresh to me as they are you. Others I am just now writing. I think that’s pretty cool.

As always, thank YOU to our village – who show up day after day in the girls and my life. Especially those who have been there since the beginning and are around for the good AND hard times. I wouldn’t be free to do my own rising from the ashes if it weren’t for you. Here’s to Burning Brightle!

About Kristin Krause, MSW

daughter turned teacher turned social worker turned wife turned foster parent turned mom turned therapist. When people who don’t know our family story find out that we fostered and adopted the girls, we generally get one of two reactions…”I would have never known. They look just like you!” or “Oh, how beautiful.” Both of these things are 100% true – on the surface. The picture perfect, shiny, pretty surface. But, just below the surface is a whole lot of mess and brokenness. Our girls endured things that I never even read about in my textbooks. Our family endured things that go completely against the 3 philosophies of safety, permanency, and well-being that the child welfare system is in place to protect. When we have the chance to share a little bit more, the response always goes something like “but…how?!…and why?!” I believe in dreaming big. Part of my dream is a child welfare and healthcare system that would have prevented unnecessary trauma for my girls, my family, and our community. The other part is one of redemption and recovery for everyone involved in our story – which is everyone. I now believe part of why our family endured what we did is so that people would hear our story and ask the hard questions of how and why. With sexual abuse, trauma, foster care, and adoption, we never truly know until we find ourselves in a position of not knowing. Because of the nature of our case, I often found myself in a position of not being able to really answer the hows and whys. I reached a point where staying silent was the only option. Now that our adoptions are finalized, it is time for me to break the silence. This blog is me daring to run after my dreams – even when I find myself out of breath (which is mostly every. single. day.) It is stories of how the collective we have lived up to the Phoenix name and are rising from the ashes to burn bright! I also currently write and edit for Social Justice Solutions
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3 Responses to Rejuvenation

  1. Writing is so therapeutic–as you know. I’m glad you’re back to sharing. I look forward to reading and providing support when I can!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Holly Gaydos says:

    Kristin, my heart is so heavy since reading this and I just can’t imagine what you are going through. I had no idea. 😦 You are in my thoughts and prayers even more now.. I miss you and wish you nothing but the happiness. If you ever want to chat, I’m always here- no judgement or fear, just a listening ear, love and support. ❤️❤️❤️ HUGS dear friend!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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