Please remember to eat as much ice cream cake as you want and not worry if people are judging you for it. Ignore the upturned noses, pick up that fork and come on over. I some important things to share with you.
First and surprisingly, I’ve learned that adults don’t have life figured out. It seems like it with their nice jobs, college degrees and fancy vocabulary. Don’t be fooled. In many ways, they don’t know what they’re doing. So, it’s perfectly okay that you don’t either.
1. There will always be someone who is “better” than you. Through trial and error, I’ve realized it’s not worth it to put value on your ability to be the prettiest, the smartest or the richest. Anyone who loves you won’t care about that stuff. If they do they’re a noob (meaning: they’re still awesome deep, deep down, they just have their own issues to work through).
2. Social media is a plastic rose. What might seem romantic is super fake. Those people on Instagram with the “perfect” pictures are just like you. They take those kinds of pictures to earn YOUR likes! The more likes, the better they feel but when the likes go down… well, their mood goes down with them.
3. Just because someone has an opinion about you, doesn’t mean it’s true. You probably remember this because, I mean, technically you’re me. In middle school, my classmates avoided me because they thought I was weird. Newsflash. I’m still “weird” but people are now drawn to me because of it. I even get invited to speak at things because of my “weird” ideas.
4. Grades don’t define your worth. School is a bit of a messy mick muckle. Out of all my rants related to the schooling system, I will tell you this: just because you didn’t get an A doesn’t make you a failure, no matter what your friends, the teacher or your mom says. Love you, Mom!
5. Friendships will change, and that’s okay. Friends come and go. One year you’ll get along better with so-and-so. Next year, they might move on. When do they, know there’s nothing wrong with you, it’s normal. Don’t beat yourself up about migrating friends or changes in interest. People to befriend will always be around.
6. Being the most popular girl in school won’t matter in a year. Really though, just like migrating friends, they rise and fall from favor. When school is finished, people won’t recognize them as the Queen Bee.
7. Being popular can suck. Being at the top and always trying to maintain the power is tough. I remember dating a guy who made all the girls swoon. When we broke up, someone else quickly rose to the occasion and starting dating him. My reign and fame had ended. The time I could have spent doing more valuable things, seemed to be wasted.
8. It’s okay to be wrong. School teaches us it’s not okay to be wrong. Trust me, that’s how the most vibrant, financially well-off people got their start. They made a tonne of mistakes! Don’t be afraid to speak up and let yourself be wrong.
So, you’re more than what you feel, there’s a purpose to your life and you’re rocking it already! Keep enjoying that cake. Love you Princess.
A slightly older K.L.P
This morning, I was, as usual, struggling with the many flaws I found with my body. Tired, peeved and incredibly irritated by the constant barrage of self-doubt I stood from my desk and walked to my window. Petrified by the weedy state of my garden I closed my eyes, longing to escape thoughts of judgment and the endless list of “to-do’s”.
“Lord, what is beauty to you?”
Almost as soon as I had asked the question, His warmth invaded the space as He entered the doorway. He walked across the room and stood behind me, put His large hand on my shoulder and stood with me. We stayed in silence for a few moments before He spoke. His voice, deep and soothing. My nerves started to slowly relax and wind down.
“What do you think of the rose Katie?”
“Roses are beautiful Yeshua… but, I mean. No offense but…” I opened my eyes to the nasty condition of the garden that lay just beyond.
“I’m kind of sick of the rose metaphor. How can I apply that to daily life? I’m obviously not a rose, I’m human. I mean, I could wear a costume around all the time and spritz myself with that flowery stuff from Bath and Body but I don’t think that would work. And yeah, people judge other people based on what they look like. All I’ve wanted, for the longest time, is to be liked and accepted by people. Is that too much to ask?”
He paused, waiting for me to be ready to listen. “Everything uniquely, Katie bug.”
The radiance of His smile exploded against the walls. His hand stayed on my shoulder, grounding me.
“Yeshua, what does that even mean?”
“Trust me, just close your eyes my girl.”
I squeezed them closed.As I fought the temptation to drown my sorrows on Facebook a new garden came into sight. Planted in that garden, in the richest soil I had ever seen was a rose, vibrant red, stunning and blooming. Its fragrance filled the air. To the right of the rose was a raspberry bush, green and lush with ripe fruit hanging from its twiggy branches. To the left of the bush was a daisy, bright and yellow as the sun. Up the flower bed just a little further was an orchid, purple, vivacious and striking. Further into the grass and away from the bed were bleedings hearts, pink and red marble drops dripping from their green conical homes. Evergreen trees, stood tall above us on all sides. The forever protectors of all those who lived underneath their sturdy shadow.
“Yeshua, it’s beautiful here.”
“Yes, everything is beautiful uniquely.”
“I suppose, but don’t you mean “uniquely beautiful?”’
He grinned and donned a look of excitement that I knew so well. He swept his hand across the flower bed.
“Each flower is beautiful in its unique state, you see. When I see the beauty of a person, I see the unique attributes I have placed in them. Their strengths, their weaknesses, their personalities. I see all of it and I love all of it. I want, so badly, to show my people how to accept themselves as I have made them. I want them to then come to me and learn to cultivate that beautiful uniqueness I have planted in them.”
The joy in his eyes was now misted by tears, “Katie-bug, all you need to do is ask me what I see when I look at you. You would be overwhelmed.”
I nodded as my own eyes welled with tears.
He took my hand and stared at the sky. “Just look up!”
I lifted my gaze. A slit in the blue had opened and widened as we watched. Just as a long-anticipated grand opening, the veil quickly slide open to reveal majesty. There, waiting on the velvet canvas were billions upon billions of stars, the moon the sun in all its splendor. Galaxies woven into colourful tapestries of royal purple, gold and black danced. Stars sang. Colorful meteorites twisted and turned before exploding into fireworks of carnelian, jasper and ruby. Chills ran down my spine. My knees grew weak. I grabbed onto his arm and looked up at Him.
When Yeshua’s hazel eyes looked at me, they were filled with light, joy, peace. Heat poured through my heart and into my stomach. My knees started to collapse. The strength of His arm was the only thing keeping me from falling.
“My girl! Katie! Everything I have placed in you is infinitely more beautiful than what you are seeing right now. Infinitely!” He winked at me and lifted me by my elbows. As He did, strength returned to my shaking legs.
“Now, to answer your question with more than a rose. every person is unique. Each carries a certain type of beauty that the person next to them does not carry. I don’t look at aesthetics. I am much deeper than the world. I think in a way that people haven’t tapped into in regular practice. When you spend time with Me, the One who created you, uniquely you, you learn more about the beauty you hold. My girl.”
The veil remains open as He gently plucked a rose from the dirt and handed it to me.
“You wouldn’t hurt this rose, would you?”
“No! Of course not.”
He released my hand and lay the flower in it. “You need to stop hurting yourself with the words you speak and believe about yourself. When I look at you Katie, I do not see ugly. I see nothing lacking. I see perfection. In every child of mine, I see it. They are beautifully unique to me Katie. Show everyone how valued they are Katie. Show them what I see in them. Call out the truth in those who have been deceived by the enemy. I want them to hear this truth so badly.”
I nodded my head and tucked the rose close to my heart. He stepped closer to me and tenderly wiped my tears with his thumbs.
“I will keep fighting for you, my girl. I will never give up, even when you don’t see things as they are. I love you more than you could ever imagine.”
“And I love you Yeshua, so so much.”
We stood there together for some time before I opened my eyes. The warmth remained. The galaxies and fireworks stayed etched in the darkest corners of my mind. When the dark thoughts try to invade I will show them back and speak the truth, “I am beautifully unique. Loved by the Creator of the Universe. Lies hold no power over me because I, just as the rose, am forever protected in the shadow of my Savior.”
Now when the dark thoughts try to invade I will shove them back, break patterns that have controlled my mind for decades, and speak the powerful truth I now hold dear to my heart.
“I am beautifully unique. Loved by the Creator of the Universe. Lies hold no power over me because I, just as the rose, am forever protected in the shadow of my Savior.”
Do you ever feel anxious? I do. Today is one of those days. It’s a photo shoot day.
My stomach does flips. My smile sages. My closet is a mess. My makeup is smudged everywhere.
I look at my crazed self in the mirror and don’t measure up to what I want to be or think that I should be. Despite what others tell me they see, I see something very different. Too short, my hair is too crazy, my legs are too stubby, my “man kicking” calves too thick. My hazel eyes don’t smolder like Gigi’s.
Here’s the deal: I want to be known and appreciated, just like everyone else on planet earth. The way I sometimes go about getting that recognition (shoots, writing or competitions) leaves me with knots inside my stomach and sweat stains the size of France.
Big, hairy deal.
What does this have to do with you?
Well, maybe you relate? Maybe you do the same and want a solution. Maybe I have a solution that works for me and will work for you…
As I spent time with God this morning, He reminded me of something. It’s something I have heard a million times before but I hadn’t let sink in.
My God, I am watched over and cared for by a King. The King of the Universe actually…
So, lets 90’s our way through this whole thing and rewind a little. I am loved by a good King.
Do I… do WE fully grasp what is being said here? A King. So, someone who has a lot of wealth, recognition and loyalty. Someone who has connections with other rulers and knows how to handle them diplomatically. A King who loves to lavish on His children and loyal subjects. I am loved by a King like that.
Now, I need to consider that He is the King of the World. Yeah, um. Wow. That’s huge.
My tiny mind is spinning wheels on this one a little bit. Not only is the King kind, wealthy, generous, wise, and caring He also holds WAY more power than the President of the United States, Russia or wherever.
He owns the nations. Not only does He rule them, he freaking owns them!
And that King is my Father.
People don’t always recognize this royalty because they don’t understand how the Kingdom works. But really, I am a Child of the Ruler of the World. I am royalty. If I need anything all I need to do is ask. If I need to feel beautiful I need to:
1. Ask Him how He sees me
3. Google verses about beauty
4. Read them
5. Choose to believe them
6. Repeat those verses over myself “I am fearfully and wonderfully made” “I am a Child of God” “He has good plans for me… plans to prosper me and give me a hope and future”…
If you are feeling gross, unworthy, unwanted today please remember who your Father is.
Dive deeper into His Word. Ask Him to satisfy the lonely, longing places. Ultimately He is the only One who can. No glamorous photo shoots, prestigious awards or fame will ever satisfy the longing in your heart.
Only the King can.
Take it from me, the sweaty, princess.
“Always wondering what they’re thinking… words are bouncing inside my head… but you call me lovely. You say I’m wonderfully made” – Hollyn
This insightful post was written by a sweet friend my mine. I am proud of her for sharing her story and very honoured to feature her words on my website. By no means do either of us claim to be medical professionals but through this blog, I pray you reach a deeper understand of what those with depression go through and or realize there is so much hope. I pray that what you are about to read accomplishes exactly what it is intended for <3
I’ve suffered from depression for 3 years now.
I don’t say the word ‘suffer’ just so I can get your sympathy. Trust me, when I tell you I don’t want it I say this because it’s the truth.
Depression is a monster that has the ability and power to go from making you feel slightly hopeless to suicidal and having no motivation to live. It’s frightening, terrifying and straight up annoying at times.
But it is something that can be conquered; there is hope.
I was about 16 years old when I kinda figured out what depression was and that I was someone who had it. It was a confusing and hard time for me. I lost many friends, I acted so weird and not like myself at times. So much so that even I noticed it and was upset about it. I tried to make sense of it all on my own and things just got more and more confusing and more and more frustrating.
I’ve been a Christian my entire life and came from a normal family so I was so confused why things got so bad and why I was even depressed in the first place. I didn’t say anything to anyone up until a year and a half ago where I came so close to attempting suicide and I cried out to a friend because I was so scared. I wasn’t happy with life anymore and I kept using the reason that I had NO reason to feel this way to avoid what was actually going on.
Big lesson: I thought only people who had hard lives and bad family situations got depressed.
I reasoned that I had no reason to feel the way I did. That everyone lost friends and life went on, that I had no reason to not want or be able to leave my bed some days.
It was very hard and I felt so alone. I was always getting sick and I fell so behind on school that I wanted to drop out cause who wanted to be a LOT older when they graduated. I was embarrassed because I had no reasons as to why I was constantly sick and depressed and having no motivation to want to continue school and extracurricular activities. But that reasoning was making things worse. Maybe if I had accepted what was going on sooner things might have been different. I can just reflect on the ‘what ifs’ or use that time moving forward, right?
Reasoning that there is nothing wrong with you or you have no reason to feel the way you do is not doing you any good. It’s something I learned the hard way. Because that reason is depression and depression is ruthless and cruel. Don’t be afraid to accept that as a reason.
That’s all well and great but how do I get out of this?
The first and very important key thing in getting help and reaching out to others is a support system. A strong, understanding support system is something everyone wants and I believe what everyone needs. With depression, everyone has their own feelings and ‘triggers.’ With depression, one thing that may hurt me might not hurt another friend of mine with depression and vice versa. It’s all just very different and sometimes we ourselves don’t understand the reason for feeling the way we do. So, how can you help?
The answer is simple. Just talk to us! Sometimes we want to talk about the problem and even if you DON’T understand what’s going on in our head we just want someone to listen. That’s all we want. Sometimes we also don’t want to talk about what’s going on in our heads and just talk about anything but that. And that’s okay! Pushing us to talk about what’s going on in our head when we don’t want to is frustrating and sometimes can put us off talking to you about it.
Basically, we just wanna know we are cared about and that someone wants to actually know what’s going on in our heads.
Help us make sense of it.
In my mind and from what I’ve discussed with friends, the hardest person or group of people to talk to and even bring depression up to is one’s parents/immediate family.
Depression is a scary thing to admit and talk about!
Trust me. We know. We know what’s going on in our heads and how it’s affecting our every day isn’t what everyone (and even ourselves) call ‘normal.’ We know. We really do. All we ask and want is to be loved and for you to understand when we say ‘I’m having a bad day today’ or whatever we chose to say that we will be understood and not accused of being overtired or overdramatic.
Sometimes we have ‘down’ days and leaving the house is difficult and exhausting for us. PLEASE try and understand. Don’t treat us any differently but please don’t argue when we don’t wanna go out and do anything every once in awhile or for a few days at a time. Sometimes we just need and want time to ourselves to figure out what’s going on in our heads and that’s okay.
As I’ve said, I’ve had depression for 3 years and it SUCKS. Things have changed for me but not necessarily gotten better because with depression there is a way to ‘get rid’ of it but it’s hard because one wrong move and it comes flying back at you like a boomerang. Does that mean one can never be free of Depression? Absolutely NOT. There is freedom from it but it’s a journey. For some, it’s longer than others. The best way I had it explained to me when I was going through what I consider my darkest days of having depression about a year and a half ago is using book/reading terms. I want to explain it here so you can read it and maybe feel understood and make sense of what’s going on. OR so you can share with a loved one going through a hard time.
Everyone has different lives. Maybe they have similar struggles but how it’s approached is different for each person because they are different, amazing, and unique people living their own lives. Because of that everyone’s life is a different book and because of that, you can’t compare your life to others.
When it comes to depression and mental health we sometimes meet people who are or have struggled the same as us and I know that many times I’ve looked at someone who seems to have their life a little more together despite depression or other struggles and I get frustrated and jealous.
Why can’t my family support me more like that? Why can’t I be just a little bit happier like them? Why can’t my life be more together?
But here is the thing. You can’t compare your Chapter 3 with their Chapter 15 or 20. It’s okay if overcoming depression takes longer than other people. We are all different. All amazing. All unique and ALL strong in this fight with our own minds.
And yes, sometimes it’s very very hard compared to other days and it feels like this ‘Chapter’ in your life is never going to end. You feel ready to give up and call it quits on this book…but the most important thing to remember is not all chapters are the same length and each one holds a different part of this GRAND, AMAZING, and BEAUTIFUL story that is your life.
Another thing to remember is that when things seem to be falling apart entirely and you’ve hit rock bottom that the hero of the story always hits rock bottom. It just means the climax is on its way. That victory is close at hand for the hero of the story. And you. YOU are not the villain, or the sidekick or the mentor to the hero. It’s your life story.
YOU are the hero.
Your victory is close at hand.