Thursday, September 24, 2015

Stepping Up When Your Partner Breaks Down

If you're a loyal follower you've seen the lack of post and original content on the blog... it doesn't make me happy, but unfortunately life has been really demanding lately and the blog has (and will be) taking a back seat. 

Earlier this year, I think it was late January or early February, my husband suffered a huge mental meltdown and ended up quitting his job. I wasn't worried... I thought he would be quick to dust himself off, shake it off and get back to work... but that didn't happen.

He has always struggled with depression and anxiety, but he spiraled downward really quickly. He'd have good days but more often than not, they were bad. He would sit home all day and spend money online that we didn't have... he knew it was wrong, but he couldn't help himself. He'd feel guilty about it, which would make him more depressed, but then he'd turn around and sell something to make up for it (he's a musician and has spent years collecting instruments and gear, so he had some to spare)... but although it helped get bills paid, it was a vicious cycle.

So I took it upon myself to support our family. I work in insurance and don't make a ton of money, but with careful budget planning and some photography jobs on the side, I've made it work. But even more stressful than our money situation, was having to keep it together and not let anyone know how much I was struggling... putting on a brave face day in day out is harder than it looks.

Not only was I worried about my husband's well being and paying our bills on time, but I also had to keep our house cleaned, show up to my 9-5 job and take care of the kids. Memphis, our oldest, is high functioning autistic and Ruby is a typical 7 year old... no lack of drama in our house, I tell ya!

But I'm tough. And I don't give up on anything or anybody.

Earlier this summer, things got really bad with my husband and I did have to rush him to the hospital... I guess it was the proverbial "rock bottom" we all hear about. It's true when they say that things usually have to get worse before they better. 

Since then, he has stopped spending irrationally, he's doing more around the house and his doctors are finally taking him seriously. He is in the early stages of being diagnosed as bipolar as well. So now we are working on getting the right medication and weekly therapy sessions with a psychologist. It's all coming full circle... I hope. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel... it's small, but it's there!

He's happier, we're happier.  At this time, he's still not ready to go back to work, so I have a while yet to go as sole provider, but I'm willing to do whatever it takes to get him healthy again.

If you've been through a similar situation or are going through something like this, I'd love to hear from you.  It's nice knowing that we're not alone in our struggles and it's important to not be ashamed to have a mental illness... or love someone who does. 


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Tuesday, September 22, 2015

What Children Can Do At A Wedding

Children can have just as much fun at a wedding have fun altogether as the adults. But sometimes little guests feel it hard to hide their emotions, they can get bored or capricious, for spending an entire day at a wedding can be a serious emotional and physical challenge for them. Thus, you have to take measures to keep them entertained and happy, right?

The ideal option would be to hire a nanny for the whole evening. The nanny should be provided with pencils, paper, and extra supplies to keep the little ones busy. You can also take a laptop with cartoons. If there is an animator at the wedding, most likely his program will include all the necessary things to amuse the kids.
The girls in tutu flower girl dresses can scatter flower petals before the bride to appear at the ceremony. But you should consider if the kids are doing it for the first time ever, they can get confused or nervous and not make it down the aisle as envisioned.
Discuss with the photographer the possibility of making a kids’ wedding photo session. A lot of children really love to be photographed. This process can gain their interest for a little while. Don’t hesitate to take part in such photo session with kids. The bride’s picture surrounded by some little fashion-mongers in tutu flower girl dresses can be extremely cute and creative at the same time.

The kids’ menu at the wedding is another important issue. Children under 7 or 8, as a rule, do not eat the same meals as the adults. That’s why you will have to order some child friendly dishes. You must find out beforehand with their parents if anyone of them has got allergy or any other taboos (maybe even religious) for some certain products. More often, the universal festive meals for the kids are the following: pancakes, fruit salad, French fries, sausages. Even though you may not assume sausages a festive meal, children just love them!
The older girls in simple flower girl dresses can actually prepare a complement for you, with a help of a nanny or animator, and declare it at the feast.  This can be some painting on a Whatman paper, a song learnt by heart, or anything the child’s fantasy is apt for. Usually such performances, if they are properly done, touch everyone’s heart.

Children are the flowers of our lives. Choose some beautiful and simple flower girl dresses and boy costumes for them and they will beautify your wedding day.

Disclosure: I was compensated for this post and it was prepared by a contributor.

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Friday, September 11, 2015

Back2School Small Style : Passion4Fashion Linkup

The kids just finished their second week of school and it's going great! I still find it hard to believe I have a 4th & 2nd grader... where are my babies!?
As usual, they were excited to wear some new duds on their first day back. Unfortunately, the first week was a H-O-T one! Probably the hottest week of the summer... so they couldn't actually wear the new "Fall" stuff I bought them. Nonetheless, they looked pretty cute I think.

Ruby: Dress & flip flops from The Children's Place
Memphis: Shorts & Tee from Giant Tiger, shoes from The Children's Place

I'm really looking forward to checking out all your fashion posts this week! Be sure to grab a button for your sidebar & spread the word!  Feel free to tag me on Twitter & Instagram (@lenabactually) and use hashtag #Passion4Fashion so we can find you!

Lena B, Actually

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