Love Story- Guest Blog

My Second Best Love Story

My name is Meg, and I’m here to tell a love story. This story is a winding one, and like all good love stories, it doesn’t end. This story is my second best love story – the story of learning to love myself. 

This story is an interesting one to approach, because for many years, I hated myself. It’s only been very recently that I’ve been making efforts to fix that. I was okay with my mind until age 11, but I have vivid memories of despising my appearance even before then. It was rare that I even tried to love myself, even back then. I would never like to look at pictures of myself, stating that I looked “ugly”. 

Then came February of 2008.

You know that scene in the first Harry Potter movie where Harry’s uncle tries to prevent any letters from reaching Harry by nailing any place a letter could enter shut, only to find that a flood of letters entered anyway?

My mind became like that, and hit crisis point that Valentine’s Day. The aftermath would lead to my diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder, which is essentially the corner wherein bipolar and schizophrenia meet, and would ensure that I would never be free of psychiatrist appointments and therapy sessions again. 

My mind was chaotic, and I grew to hate it. I resented the manic highs and made friends with the depressive lows, which was a grave error. The lows made me feel more in control, sure. They were also the emotional equivalent of that friend who claims to be close to you, only to spill all of the embarrassing things you tell them to their other “friends”. They were not kind, and I would have these mental spirals that were very difficult to escape from. I resented myself for having a mental illness, and beat the daylights out of myself mentally for it, especially as my symptoms turned more bipolar than anything else.

There were times when my mind and I got along. I could throw an album of original songs together in 8 days by the time I turned 19 when the inspiration struck, and I didn’t mind that. In hindsight, I think that was me befriending the manic side of the bipolar egged on by Mountain Dew. In any case, it worked, and I’d make an album every once in awhile. 

My first real attempt to know myself actually came through album-writing. Primrose Path, my fifth album, flung barbed words at God, culture, and the school I was attending, but also caused me to question my Mormon faith. That debate had been raging for some time, but I finally expressed formally in writing here. This opened the floodgates, and a few months later these thoughts laid the foundation for my seventh album, Mago. Mago was the beginning of a journey. It was raw and haunting, with many of the songs building on Primrose’s themes of recovery and self discovery. It is easily my most real and honest album. It took lyrically gutting myself and getting these thoughts on paper to understand where I needed to go. I needed to know what I looked and felt like, I needed to accept and love myself I was to go anywhere other than the state of confusion I was in.

For the next few months, I focused on appearance. I wore clothes that I thought made me look like myself, but something was missing. It turned out that the something missing was inside me. It was me not accepting myself for who I am and owning my story. I was reunited with my high school crush shortly afterwards, who would later become my husband. He accepted – and still accepts – me for who I am. He pushed me to better myself from the start. He won’t let me hold any kind of emotion back, and is always here no matter what I’m feeling. 

The next big breakthrough came when I wrote a blog post called “Best Dress, or I Can’t Remember What I’ve Forgotten”, in which I opened up about my mental illnesses. I haven’t looked back. 

I know that my journey is just beginning. Writing helps me figure out what I need to do and to process my world. I have the support of kind people in my life. Learning to love myself has been a quest to give myself permission to mess up and be vulnerable, but also to relax and reevaluate when things get hard. It’s difficult because I don’t give myself these gifts a lot of time. I’m the worst at taking advice, and this often includes advice I give myself. It’s a journey. The thing I try to remember is that it’s okay to be flawed, it’s okay to be human, and learning these things is a journey. Being myself is my goal today – and always.

Meg Jam is the oddball behind Byzantines and Button Downs, a blog simply about coming home. Meg is 21 and loves her husband and her Mountain Dew. They live in Alaska.

Instagram: @byzantinesandbuttondowns

blog: agenderadventures.wordpress.com

music: megdunnmusic.bandcamp.com

twitter: @buttondowndeity

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Meg, I hope you continue to write because I believe that you can help others! Your husband sounds like an amazing guy for you. I hope that he continues to push you, to be you. You are your journey and great things are going to happen! Be you and enjoy life as much as you can.

Follow me at any of these places:

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/loveinjune16/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jrenfro99

Love Story- Guest Blog

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I can still remember the day that I met him, although I know he doesn’t. It was a day that everyone in kindergarten looks forward to: the day we are assigned to an 8th grade buddy. Getting assigned to an 8th grade buddy when you are in kindergarten is a big deal. We went to a Catholic school and your 8th grade buddy would escort you to church and take part in activities with you during the school year.

Joe was easily the tallest boy in the 8th grade class. He was near the back of the line with a friend of his named Austin. One by one we were paired off with our 8th grade counterparts. Some how that day I was put toward the back of the pack and ended up being the last one assigned to a buddy. It was just my luck that there were two 8th graders left (Joe and Austin) and just one me. I was the only one in my kindergarten class to say that I had two 8th grade buddies that year.

There were a few things that year that stand out to me. Joe and Austin always made me laugh. I have a vivid memory of sitting in church with them and looking over and realizing that Joe was falling asleep in the pew. Austin realized it around the same time and did something to startle Joe out of his impromptu nap causing him to let out a big gasp that was heard by both our teachers which caused me to belly laugh.

Another fond memory I have is gathering leaves during the fall with them for a project. There was a leaf I just couldn’t reach and Joe was nice enough to lean forward and grab it for me. While I can’t remember every interaction, the ones I remember always bring a smile to my face. Once he graduated, it would be quite a long time before those memories would come back.

Fast forward nearly 20 years. I was clicking through Facebook one day and to my surprise Joe’s name came up as someone I might know. I instantly messaged him and asked him if he was the same “Joey” that I knew in kindergarten. He immediately told me that he no longer goes by Joey but he was in fact my 8th grade buddy. From that day on, Joe has always been in my life.

Today, Joe and I share two beautiful children. Our story has not been easy. We continue to battle against consequences of addiction and all the downfalls that come with it. We have gone to war with each other at times and had our moments of feeling like this was the end of our story. But, at the end of the day, I couldn’t imagine having children or being with anyone else. Joe has taken great steps and made amazing sacrifices to keep our family together and we continue to work together every day to give our boys the stable home that is so important for every child. Our boys are incredible. Our oldest is going to be 5 this year and starting his own kindergarten experience. I have to wonder what new adventures will be in store not only for him, but for us in the future.

 

About Me

My name is Kristen Frolich and I am the proud author of the blog The Reading Revolutionary. For as long as I can remember, I have always loved reading. I recently embarked on a challenge to read the 100 books you should read before you die and write about my experiences. My blog features posts about the authors behind these titles and full book review. I also write about hot topics that detail my stance on certain important issues related to reading.

Please go to The Reading Revolutionary and join my revolution! Make sure to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest so you never miss the latest posts!

www.thereadingrevolutionary.com

www.instagram.com/thereadingrevolutionary

www.pinterest.com/thereadingrev

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Wow, Kristen! You and Joe have known each other for a very long time, its great that Facebook can reconnect you with those that you knew in grade school! Remember, no story is the same and no story is YOUR story. Addiction is hard, but is very rewarding after recovery. Blessings!

Please be sure to check out Kristen’s social’s and her blog about her journey of reading!

Follow me at any of these places:
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/loveinjune16/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/jrenfro99

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Love Story- Guest Blogger

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Colt Sawyer

I never thought I’d be that girl. I mean, I obviously knew I’d love my child but I always tended to give an -eye roll- to the sappy post moms would write about their children.

Love never came easy to me. I grew up in home where love was shown by being called names and being abused. I put myself in relationships that were similar to my home life. That quickly went south and I  just gave up on “love” completely. I never really trusted anyone. There were never really people that I knew had my back 24/7 and truly deeply loved me.

Life was getting tough for me. I was broke, in legal trouble, lost my drivers license, working 40 plus hours a week to never see a paycheck, I spent what little money I did have on partying and alcohol. Which, does not solve your problems. My depression and anxiety were at an all time high and I barely even loved myself. I didn’t take care of myself and I needed to grow up.

Out of nowhere; I decided to move from the town and I had lived in my whole life. A fresh start is what I thought I needed. Everything was going great and then boom, two pink lines. Now here I was, pregnant by a  guy I had barely even been dating. I was lost. I had no idea what I was going to do. This is not what was intended. I refused to give up though.

My pregnancy was 100% the hardest period of my life. I suffered from very bad pregnancy depression, my relationship was not working out like I wanted it to, my dad went to prison, my youngest sister passed away, and my younger brother attempted suicide and became 100% blind.

All I wanted was to stay calm for my son. They’ll tell you a million times that stress is bad for your baby. That’s exactly what I did. Jessica, 3 years ago would have straight up had a mental breakdown. I’m scared to even think about how I would have handled that time in my life if I wasn’t carrying my son. I was still so sad and angry though. That time of my life is still haze to be honest.

Then August 3rd came and my 8lb 8oz beautiful baby boy was born. The best mistake that had ever happened to me. From that moment, I felt the love I had needed my whole life. It’s so hard to explain but it’s magical.

He’s 18 months old now and our love grows stronger every day. He is momma’s boy. He’s helped me grow so much as a person. I’ve become stronger and more patient. I’ve learned to appreciate the love that people give me and not expect some over exaggerated love. I’ve learned to forgive. I’ve learned to smile.

My son came in a period of my life when I need him most. He’s changed me as a person. He makes me have my act together and strive to be the best I can be. He makes me love myself more than I ever have before. He saved my life.  He made my life complete. He will always be my true love story.

 

A little about me-

I’m Jessica from HeyMamaJess.com. I’m born and raised in East Texas and I’ve always had a passion for writing and trying to make other people life’s easier! I love being a mom, promoting self care, and crafting. You can check out my blog or follow me at instragram.com/heymamajessss

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Jessica’s story spoke to me! I was teary eye by the end and that is how you know you have one amazing story! Thank you for sharing and I hope that you and Colt continue to bond over the years! Boys, are so such momma’s boys, even at age 13. SHHH don’t tell my son I told you.

Follow me at any of these places:
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/loveinjune16/
Twitter: https://twitter.com/jrenfro99
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