Raising Elves

As wild as nature. Myself, parenting and natural remedies blog.

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I tried it your way

I tried it your way.

Because I was not enough,

so you said.

Or I was wrong,

was what you meant.

But really, I was just a reflection.

Of everything you were not.

So I tried it your way,

as I am out to learn,

not to rot.

I became your reflection,

I became

your anger,

your frustration,

your disappointment,

your insecurity,

your jealousy.

You told me you were better,

so I became the worst.

You told me you were more beautiful,

so I became ugly.

You told me you knew everything,

so I became stupid.


I tried it your way.

That did not work so well for me.

So, here is my way.


I love you,

despite yourself.


Every depression is valid

Sometimes it’s acute.

Sometimes it’s chronic.

Sometimes it’s severe.

Sometimes it’s mild.

Sometimes it’s just depression.

Sometimes it’s depression and anxiety and paranoia and ocd

maybe mania alternating with severe lethargy,

or suicidal ideation

or suicidal

and millions of other symptoms that there are no words for,

that have to be labelled as a condition beyond depression.

Sometimes it’s just depression.

Sometimes you can get out of bed, strap a smile on your face and nobody,

NOBODY, can guess what you are hiding.

Sometimes you just can’t hide it.

Or get out of bed.

Sometimes you’re nuts.

Sometimes you’re sane.

Sometimes you can’t control yourself.

Sometimes you can’t stop controlling yourself.

Sometimes you have it once.

Other times it doesn’t go away and is a chronic illness, you need to manage.

Depression is a wide, infinite, spectrum.

Every single experience is unique.

It’s genes, it’s receptors, it’s environment, it’s lifestyle, it’s trauma, or, it just is what it is.

No matter how severe, or mild it is,

whether you use prescriptions or exercise or counselling,

or everything.

Or nothing.

EVERY depression is valid.



My Random Musings

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New year resolutions: are you ready to let go?

As I am reading blogs re-capping on 2013 and preparing for the New Year resolutions, I have been stretching my mind in regards to end of year contemplations.

I still haven’t quite put these feelings into thoughts just yet so I know I really need to sit in the quiet for a while.

This evening, I was cooking the dinner in peace (as Robotman is still on his Christmas holidays) and got to thinking of many different conversations I have had over the year, along with my own fairly intense healing that I have gone through.

One blessing I have had was the wonderful two year old in my life keeping me from taking to the bed and feeling sorry for myself.

That brings me on to some thoughts I had today regarding some frustrations I have had RE regurgitating the same old problems over and over again. Sometimes they were my problems and sometimes they belonged to others.

At first I was quite intolerant of this non-productive stage in the healing process. Ever the pragmatist, I will only do something if there is a reason for it, hence my frustrations.

This stage I speak of is the stage of apathy- or victimhood.

Just before the real healing begins we live in apathy.

We moan, complain or whinge. No matter who gives us the solutions to our problems, in this prelude to healing our aim is not to heal but to dwell in our broken-ness.

Sometimes we are righteous victims. Sometimes we are victims of our own thinking, pre-conceptions and defensiveness.

Sometimes the two intertwine.

The one thing I do know about this phase is that on the surface it is non-productive but at the same time it is essential ground work to get us to the next stage.

I think of it as a resting phase preparing us to climb the mountain that is healing.

It is processing. We are processing our pain. Often, our mind needs to do this work before our pain is released to our wiser self for healing.

I think that is backward, though and I am reminded of a Caroline Myss quote:

The soul always knows what to do to heal itself. All we have to do is quiet the mind

I am back to quiet again. Maybe that really is the answer.

I think of the advice or healing I have given over the past year.

It frustrates me when I give solutions or try to open up the next step beyond dwelling in the complaint. I really dislike complaining- not that I don’t indulge in it. I extra dislike repetitive complaining or finding something new to complain about once the original complaint has been resolved, dissolved or maybe even evolved.

I have come to think that when people are complaining of problems to you they are not looking for solutions or advice. They are simply processing.

To listen. To just simply listen and hear the person, we can enable them to walk through this stage.

To talk through them, to advise and give solutions we might be putting up blockages at this essential stage of healing.

Solutions have a place in the sequence later on but is often wasted on the apathetic stage.

There is a flip side to this coin though.

Some people get stuck in apathy. Do not we all at some stage in our life?

So stuck that you can spend months or even years listening to their or your own suffering. This is so draining, especially when you think you are trying to heal or just get on with trying to create a happy life for yourself.

That’s the thought I had tonight- when we are in apathetic mode do we actually want to heal or do we want to live in the wound?

How do we know when we are ready to actually start healing?

Thing is, it is a lot easier to just live in our victimhood. It really is.

It is so so so unbelievably hard to mentally, emotionally and spiritually heal from even the smallest human experience.

To forgive. To let go. To let everything and everyone just be.

To let assholes be assholes. To let crappy circumstances just be. To just accept the present as it is.

We are delicate, complex creatures with so many levels beyond understanding.

So, if we are not aware of our apathy we are at risk of dwelling on it for a little too long.

Apathy is good for processing but it is not in any way productive long term.

Long term apathy- even in times of righteous victimhood- creates bitterness.

It becomes cyclical and we become victim to our own thoughts and processes. It grows.

We start to find problems in other things. Misery loves company, as the phrase goes, only it is more often in our own mind that misery finds it’s companions.

I wonder, on a smaller scale, if failed New Year’s resolutions are a result of our ‘stuck-ness’.

Time and time again we fall back in to old habits.

New habits are just too much effort to keep.

But the question I am asking myself in this process is: Am I ready to let go?

Let go of my stuck-ness.

A lot of my apathy has fallen away these last few months. Significantly since I started letting go of my victimhood- as a victim of harmful relationships and a victim of my daughter’s birth. Both cases started as righteous victimhood but I was not innocent in either and in that circumstance it was my thoughts, beliefs and pre-conceptions that exasperated all that happened to me on the other end.

That is were self-responsibility comes in.

On the smaller scale of New Year’s resolutions self-responsibility is the key. No one else can do it for us.

Often the desire is not a result of the specific resolution- it is just the desire for happiness that through changing we bring ourselves closer.

Change is the key. We need to let go of the past. We need to let go of pre-conceptions and damaging belief systems in order to move forward into Newness.

It’s amazing what making the dinner in quiet can bring up in us eh?


What WInter brings part 2: the happy ending

My last post ended on a sombre note.

It was all quite sombre really. Thank you to those of you who sent me messages and commented. I sincerely appreciate you taking the time to write to me. 

I left it like that on purpose to show just how cold Winter can be.

I really wanted to write this in the post but at the time I just couldn’t. I was wallowing in Winter, you see.

I really deeply connect with seasons and every year explore deeper recesses within and use the symbolism of nature to help me process.

Winter can be cold and cutting but it has some remarkable gifts to offer us.

Like silence and contentment.


credit: Silvery @zastavki.com

Nature is at it’s finest on a sunny Winter’s day.

Not many people embrace our lakes or ocean at this time of year. Not many people walk our forests.

To sit by a Winter lake can do nothing but still the mind.

In Winter you can truly hear birdsong because there are so few birds left to face it head on with the rest of us.

The trees sing a different tune when they are leafless.

Snuggling up inside a warm coat, gloves and a snood can bring greater enjoyment of Winter offerings. 

But it takes a while to get there.

Much like our inner world, we avoid it for as long as possible.

We live in denial. We bury ourselves in our warm houses (a true blessing in this sad age of recession and unemployment).

We shovel the rotten leaves down with comfort food rather than allowing them to simply decompose in fresh air.

We sit in our discomforting feelings but we can not even identify them without the help of Winter silence.

In Spring we come alive again. Spring is all about movement and work. Sowing seeds for fresh new sustenance. We nurture ourselves.

In Summer we share ourselves with others, we enjoy rest and leisure with great company and even greater food.

In Autumn we shed in preparation for Winter’s healing touch.

The process of healing is never enjoyable.

We forget what we went through once Spring comes as we are so happy to be free again. To move forward and live again.

If we take Winter for what it is we can enter into Spring having shed a whole new layer.

Freer and lighter than before.

Lighter in Spirit.

My last post was an example of Winter processing. Feeling down and having resistance.

Resistance to the process.

Whether that be sadness, loneliness, anger, un-forgiveness, dis-contentment with life or anything you can think of.

Regardless how minor or major our issues, Winter will always be there offering us the opportunity to soak our souls in the deep, cold and still waters.

Soak in it. Just be it- be the sadness or loneliness. Be the stress or the frustration. Be the anger and un-forgiveness. Just be dis-contented.

This is all just part of the human condition.

By accepting our deepest disgruntled feelings and experiences and just being in them, we are allowing the process. We are allowing Winter in.

Winter freezes us over. It is only in the darkness of Winter do we realise and re-purpose the light. 

Spring is the one whom we will see coming for us over the hill, rinsing us out with it’s rain.

Just in time for Summer. Where we will be renewed again.





What Winter brings

I’ve been quiet of late, I know.

I’ve been anxious about the birth next April and a lot of my fears from last time have been surfacing.

I’ve been feeling the reduced serotonin levels through the lack of running and am just about managing fast walking every night despite early sciatica rearing it’s ugly head. So, I have been a little bit low.

I mourned with Autumn. Which is why I have been quiet.

But it’s Winter now.

The stillness and the cold is ample at giving us the opportunity to reflect on inner healing.

This weekend saw the start of our Christmas clear out.

My Dad built me a new cupboard in the ktichen- hiding the hideous boiler and giving me the little bit of extra storage space I need.

In the meantime, I offered the old cupboard he had made to my sister who came up to collect it yesterday.

Saturday saw me ironing the four thousand pairs of trousers, two thousand tops and countless bundles of toddlers clothes still stained at the neck despite numerous scrubbing sessions. So although it wasn’t a heavy day, it saw me standing in the silent house doing repetitive movements and falling into a trance.

Sunday saw me emptying out drawers, boxes, shelves, cupboards. I woke up in a bad mood knowing all that I had ahead of me.

What is it about clear outs that get me in such bad humour?

Everything I do, you see, I relate to my inside world.

When I run I am chasing away inner stagnation. When I am resting I am the peace of a still lake.

When I am comfort eating I am shoveling down disturbed feelings that don’t have a place in my soul.

Just like how we have numerous bit’s of crap floating around the house that have no place. Clutter.

Urgh, clutter. Clutter is just a reflection of all those unsettled inner feelings that don’t have a place in my soul.

So when I have clutter in my house I know things are bad on the inside.

But yesterday, thanks to the glorious stillness of Winter, I was quiet enough to put a name to those feelings.

I found objects that I had hidden away in this cupboard.

This rarely opened cupboard that was looming over me every day. It was not built for my new home, you see. It was measured for a specific corner of our old house so it never really fit.

And when I took it with me, I also took all the baggage that I hid in it.

Yesterday I got up and began the clearing out process.

Confronted with hidden items, I weeped and I designated some pieces for the rubbish and some for the charity shop.

Little things that reminded me of Dolly- remember this post? When dogs die

I silently mourned her as I cleared away old collars, sprays, toys. I could still smell her.

Then I found an old bag of baby grows.

This really engulfed me.

Knowing that I cannot remember the first year of my Elf’s life struck me hard.

That year of walking in the clouds. There in body but not in spirit.

Seeing photos and not remembering taking them.

Constantly worrying that my distance effected her in some way.

Now worrying that if my new baby gets my ‘presence’ in the first year will they be or feel different. More so, will Elf feel different.

The anxiety that I robbed my precious first born of those essential nurturing, spiritually bonding moments all because I had left my body.

It took me two years to realise that the Elf’s birth had traumatised me to the point where I had changed as a person. But it took me one year to just come back down to Earth.

And here I am again, walking into the hospital like a screaming Celtic warrior, paint all over my face, ready for war this time. Ready.

Ready to defend myself.

credit: conan.com

credit: conan.com

Isn’t that sad?

Birth, the most natural thing that humans have been doing since the beginning of our existence and here I am struggling to even enter the hospital without feeling like a giant hand is constricting my stomach.

I am a file- not a person.

I am a mindless animal- not a decisive, intelligent woman.


So there I was on the floor of the ‘play room’ (not that she even plays in it) accepting my grief.

My grief for my adolescence companion who I would give anything to just have her lie on me right now. To feel her warmth.

My grief for what should have been an ecstatic fist year of my firstborns life.

My grief for myself- who I am I anymore?

…and my loneliness.

The loneliness of knowing not one single member of the medical community can even comprehend what I am going through internally because it simply is not tangible or measurable to them. If it is not physical then it is not a problem. If they can’t see it then it is not there.

Winter brings with it freshness and quiet reflection.

But it also brings coldness and loneliness.

Even when you are surrounded by expansive mountains or magnificant people, in Winter, all you can hear is your own echo.


What to do when you’re fed up talking about it but still feel like crap

***Now this post may have you rolling your eyes, or you might be thinking ‘great idea!’, or you may just be a little intrigued- either way, I ask you to hear me out.***

I have always been a hyper-sensitive hyper-active ‘here look at my entire soul! I am here! I have arrived! All I want to do is love everyone!’ kind of person.


I have often been too much-too intense-too wild for a lot of people. So I learned to suppress it.

I tried to change. I became hurt by countless rejections and snide remarks so I started to hold it all in.

Then I became suppressed depressed.

Thankfully, I eventually realised that for all the people in the world who couldn’t (or wouldn’t) get me, there were more people who love, like, or at the very least, tolerate me.

After a while I started letting myself out again.

I started developing meaningful relationships with many more people outside of my very small circle of trustees.

So what happened that led me to this change?

One day, I was driving the car and having a defending-myself-argument with somebody in my head.

I was saying the things I wanted to say to that person in a past moment- that time they were being a cunt asshole not-nice person.

You see, whenever people are being not-nice people I go into shock and freeze and can’t say what I need to say because I can feel all their bitterness creeping around my body like I have been bitten by a venomous snake and I am paralysed as it’s squeezing me to death.

Anyway, I was in the car defending myself when a voice popped into my head and said, ‘Laura, you are not a bad person’.

I realised that my rational mind was never going to understand or explain irrational behaviour.

So I freed myself from my own chains and re-revealed myself to the world yet again. Only this time I focused on all the good, nice, kind and loving people in my life.

When I did this, I realised that the majority of people in my life are good, nice, kind and loving.

And for the people where I provoked something not-so-nice in them?

I let it go.

I sent lots of loving thoughts to the situation.

I bought a pink candle (as to me, pink symbolises compassion and forgiveness) and lit it every time I had a bad memory re-surface.


I stopped talking about it/them/scenarios. I stopped thinking about it. I stopped replaying conversations over and over.

I just lit the candle and offered all the hurt, anger and negativity to the flame.

Humans have been using ritual for as long as we know but in reality what good would lighting a candle do?

Humans project, honour and understand their intangible internal world through physical rituals.

So the candle isn’t magic.

It is the physical ritual of me deciding to ‘burn’ those memories that helped me to let go.

By seeing it outside of my being, I made the forgiveness real.

Over time the exaggerated memories became weaker until I could eventually discuss the situation with absolutely no emotional response.

Once I did this, I found it easier to ‘come out’ again as my whole self.

Even the feral part.


I learned not to give a fiddlers fart whether people liked me or not.

I learned to not hand over my self-esteem to people who behave with put-downs, creative speculation, judgement and nasty comments.

I learned to see that people who behave in such ways are actually just broken people- that they need love and compassion more than anyone.

So I sent them love and compassion. Through my symbolic ritual.

So when you really just have nothing left to talk about, introspection and the symbolism of candle rituals are a much cheaper and effective form of counselling.

Why not try it? Sure you have nothing to lose.

Some other colour options that may interest you:

Green: When you need space.

Yellow: When you want to release fear -or- bring in joy/sunshine into your life.

Red: When you want to renew passion and energy in your life (let go of fatigue, lethargy, apathy).

Orange: Healing from PTSD, sexual abuse, difficult labour.

Blue: Peace in your mind. Use when you are ready to let go of thinking too much.

White: Supporting detox. When you want to see and feel clearly. When you are ready to let go of suffering/ being a victim.

Purple: When you need healing

Olive green: Let go of bitterness

As always, please do leave a comment if you have any further suggestions, advice or experiences you would like to share with me and other readers. Or even if you just want to say hi!


God in The Child

It was cloudy once.
The sun in my stomach.
Like a cob web,
It absorbed others’ niggles.
A desire to heal.
But it didn’t know how to re-release
the pain.
To transmute it.
So it became cloudy, heavy, sad.
The sun in my stomach lost its shine.

Then something had to give and
it burst.
Cobwebs flew heaven-bound.
And something beyond life took it away,
in a miracle.
I let it go.

I didn’t realise I was letting it go.
I just woke up and there was a hole in my stomach.
Where my sun used to be.
Where my cobweb used to be.

And I looked into the child’s eyes and saw God.
For me to say that word,comfortably, is a miracle.
And my hole started to fill.
I could feel it- the lights.
Tinkles, sparkles, love- my child.
She filled it.

So now I have a sun again.