The coma began 9 years ago when I had my oldest daughter; by the time she was three I had my second daughter. A three year old and an infant – recipe for a disaster when you have a career, mental health issues and both of your children began their lives months early and required an extended hospital stay to grow in incubators. One night, after tripping on baby toys in the living room, I stumbled to the floor and awoke the baby I JUST got to sleep – I yelled “I am so Mental.”
And then as a creative-type I wove together the part about being a therapist with a small private practice, coupled with my mental health battle – and Voila.I’m finally putting all of my thoughts and experiences into a format other than sticky notes and half-written journal pages.
I birthed the idea of hosting a podcast and starting a blog to ignite a small community of people who get it – people who remember surviving Y2K as an adolescent or full-on teenager. I was a senior in High School.
The Mental Mom show isn’t just about parenting and mom stuff. It’s about the battle of dealing with mental health while doing “NORMAL” things like maintaining or starting a relationship with an S/O. Or, raising tiny humans and finding some kind of balance, as we battle and accept technology changing at the speed of light.
Whether you consider yourself a Gen-Xer or Millennial (I happen to be right in the middle) you are of the information age where everything makes us FAT and causes CANCER and we are getting notifications about it all day on our devices. I for one, can’t figure out how to stop them from infiltrating my dumbass smart phone.
Our parents were raised by Holocaust and The Great Depression survivors, so they were taught to clean their plates and not to throw anything away, because you might need it when the next economic depression hits and everyone is out of work. It makes sense they were trying to be prepared for the worst. But it caused so much generational fear and “what if” thinking that we now suffer from lots of anxiety. That’s not the only reason we have anxiety. Our parents tried to instill in us 90s kids that the sky is the limit and we can do anything – become anything (which I am thankful for in my case, because my parent’s have always believed in me and supported my dreams) but for some people it backfired when we all went to college thinking we could graduate and walk right into a good paying job, buy real-estate, get married, have children and actually afford to save and go on vacation. That “American Dream” doesn’t seem to exist in the way we heard about it growing up. So, we are creating a new dream where we are more focused on travel and experiences. We want to earn good money – but we know money isn’t the answer to everything. In some ways, we rebelled. We are minimalising and are anti-stuff (or at least trying to finish Marie Kondo’s method.) No thanks on the leftovers, we are battling the obesity epidemic and trying to figure out how to store all of the extra food storage containers we accumulated at our last family get together.
We’re having kids, choosing not to have kids, managing careers and drowning in student loans. And of course – relationships – we are trying to figure out new roles in a framework of EQUALITY.
Lots of Dads are attending field trips; Mom’s are often bringing in equal if not more than their male counterparts to the household – a lot different than generations before us.
It’s exciting – right?
To help me sift through all of this and help me turn off my notifications and update my vocabulary – I snagged the perfect co-host.
We fell in love over creating the Mental Mom Show podcast AND our obsession with documentaries.
Casey Harper, my artsy, film-school-graduate boyfriend – who is extremely mentally healthy and doesn’t have children – yeah – we have some pretty diverse perspectives to share. It’s not another parenting podcast or “Mom” podcast. I happen to be a mom and I happen to have struggled with my own ADHD, depression, anxiety, and, I happen to be a therapist. But, we talk about more than just parenting dilemmas. We discuss current mental health trends and anything human-behavior related. Our biggest theme: Laughter is the best medicine (once you are stabilized on anti-depressants – if you need them – like I do.)
I would love to hear your stories and if you’re looking for (mostly) light-hearted entertainment and some interesting viewpoints on pop culture, mental health, human behavior and the occasional parenting dilemma – give us a listen wherever you get your podcasts.