What Does Happily Ever After Really Mean? Bookmark and Share

What Does Happily Ever After Really Mean?

This week my parents celebrated 42 years of marriage. In a Facebook, my mother pondered if anyone truly understands the promises they are making when they get married. Her conclusion was that they don’t. Anyone who’s been married a decent length of time would probably agree—I know I do.

I’m glad my parents didn’t have a clue when they said their vows because they may not have followed through. My childhood wasn’t exactly spent basking in the warmth of their happy marriage. My parents wed at ages 19 and 21. They had me a ...

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Gratitude: What We Learn When Someone Young Is Dying Bookmark and Share

Yesterday I nearly had a panic attack while watching a movie about pandas.

You might ask how cute, cuddly, endangered pandas could cause anyone anxiety. Well, they are endangered, but this angst was the self-centered kind not the I-must-save-the-world kind. The answer is simple and stupid: It was the middle of the afternoon, and I was at the public museum goofing off.

I had just dropped my daughter off for a class taking place at the museum and had decided to use the two hours to explore the place myself. I was hoping to take my mind off my lack ...

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The Power of Friendship: What a Difference a Year Makes Bookmark and Share

The Power of Friendship: What a Difference a Year Makes

A year ago today, I woke up for the first time in my Milwaukee home. I was excited about our new chapter in life but also exhausted from the three-day drive across country and overwhelmed by the unpacking.

Mostly, I was terrified at having left behind a circle of friends that had taken more than a decade to create. My emotional stability was in question—so I guess things were actually pretty much the same as always but I worried about life without having dear friends close by.

I was right to be concerned. Only in the past decade has ...

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Make New Friends But Keep the Old Bookmark and Share

Make New Friends But Keep the Old

Having spent the past four days visiting my best friend from high school, I woke up this morning in a curious funk. I should have felt refreshed and happy, on a post-vacation high. Instead, I was melancholy and moody.

It shouldn’t have come as a surprise. Hanging out with someone who giggled with you when you were a pimply faced teen with braces and a poodle perm surely lights up something inside you akin to a heroin rush (I assume given that I have never partaken in heroin). Of course, the rush is followed by a crash and major ...

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What I Learned My First Week Off Anti-Anxiety Meds Bookmark and Share

What I Learned My First Week Off Anti-Anxiety Meds

Just over a week ago I swallowed what I hope was the last pill for anxiety control that I will ever take. After six months of medically induced mellowness, I felt ready to boost my serotonin levels on my own. Plus, I really missed my libido.

The medication had taken the edge off my anxious personality, but it also made me slightly numb (in more ways than one) and unmotivated. I’d lost my internal fire and I wanted some of it back.

Many people have anxiety levels that may require lifelong medication, but for others, making lifestyle changes to ...

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