Introducing Tales of Brilliant Chaos A New, Regular Guest Blogger

We have wrote a guest post and it appeared here, today. Our love and thanks to our favorite nurse!

Holistic Nurse Mama

43610046_1584900024943745_1134506918224592896_nToday is World Mental Health Day and I want to shine the spotlight on a beautiful person in my life who can really help to derive some awareness in regards to mental health.

Emma Hendrix is one of my oldest and dearest friends. We’ve known each other since she and I were ten years old. We met when we were in the fifth grade and have been friends ever since. She even stood by me when a boy I teased in high school paid me back by pouring an entire can of root beer over my head in the middle of class. (We all get what we deserve, don’t we?)

Over the years, our lives took two very distinctly different paths. I never knew during the years that we grew up together that Emma’s home life was filled with events of abuse and neglect that no child should ever have…

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After a busy morning with the family,. I settled into some crafting. It is seriously awesome how creating things feel.

Becoming Emma


The pathway to becoming Emma

This is a hard post to write, yet it’s probably our most important post to date. In many ways, it’s the new beginning. Again. I know, you’ve all heard this new beginning thing before.

None of that was lies. In their own way every time we’ve claimed a new beginning, it’s been a new beginning. This one just happens to be a big new beginning.

I had intended to write this while I drank my coffee, only I drank my coffee while browsing some other blogs, trying to build the motivation to write this. The coffee is gone and yet the words haven’t all found their way to my fingertips. So I will begin with the words I do have.

Being a part of a system of 65+ is too much. It’s too much for me, for them, for each other. Many don’t even know each other. There are cliques but no unity. It went from a sisterhood to an aloof neighborhood. A neighborhood that could barely agree on anything. Only certain groups could handle fronting together. When someone outside of the group currently fronting tried to get in there to the front, they were left feeling distant and uncomfortable both on the inside and the outside.

That isn’t okay. It’s not okay at all. The pain it causes is not okay. We are left with a perpetual struggle, compounded by the chaos whoever is in front has to wade through while trying to pay attention to the world around us.

Yesterday we made the incredibly hard decision to put the vast majority of the system to sleep. And by vast, I mean that we went from 65 + to 19, and yet that 19 doesn’t count as a full 19 because many are sets that can’t be separated and do not function on their own. So to be entirely technical we went from 65+ to 13. That’s drops us to 20% of the original (thanks Google for the math help!). There’s a sadness, and a sense of guilt running through a lot of us, but no matter how we work it, we can’t figure out a better way.

In some capacity, the words of the “Christian therapist” we talked to months ago are starting to make sense. Not that God wouldn’t want us like this, I still call bullshit on that one, but that we don’t deserve to live in a constant struggle. We deserve to have a life, a future, and some peace. God wants that for us.

We haven’t committed to anything except a drastic reduction of numbers. For now, we are working on becoming Emma. Defining who she is and what pieces we bring to the whole. We are working on becoming healthy, both inside and out. We are working on reducing the stress and chaos and creating the future we deserve.


Hanging with Short People

Rhya was here too but next to me, so not pictured haha. We did lunch and then hung out in the backyard. Found out that these short people have a LOT of words they need to say ALL the time, and it’s been fun listening.

How to Make Fear Work for Us

achievement confident free freedom

Photo by Snapwire on

Fear is a real jerk sometimes. It buddies up real close with anxiety and together the two of them get in the way of really experiencing life. Fear stops us in our tracks and causes us to re-evaluate whether something is worth the risk. It allows us to believe the negative self-talk and the negative and unkind words of people around us. We get stuck on words like fat, lazy, over-emotional, stupid, etc. We get pulled in by the necessity of meeting the expectations of others, many times others who couldn’t live up to the same expectations they set (that could be us, each other, family, friends, teachers, etc). The fear of failing to live up to those expectations can be, and often is, paralyzing. We are doomed before we ever start.

There’s got to be a way around this fear. As a system who has lived in fear of some form for well, 37 years, we can tell you that this is a real pain in the ass problem. We know we aren’t alone there. It’s a common human problem. The fear wins.

Lately, if you’ve noticed, we’ve been reflecting on our life. Specifically how we’ve grown and changed in the last 3 years.  We are still fat…. but not AS fat. We are still lazy… but not ALL the time. We are still prone to predicting failure before we even begin… but we often begin anyways.

Do you see what we’ve been seeing? There are still those stinging words, but there’s progress behind them. Fear is losing, somehow. We’ve been active in Zumba for over 3 months. We fought through the fear of going to something new and found something we love and can be consistent with. We are going to CR consistently and participating on a helpful level. Learning to work the slides and helping to greet people as they come in. Fear almost kept us from that too.

Hitting publish on every post we write is an act against fear. What if people don’t like it? Don’t read it? Say mean things?

Who cares? For real. If we’re writing for ourselves then what does it ultimately matter. Other people are going to have expectations and opinions on how every single one of us lives our life. Let them. Listen to them and see what you can take from the expectations… and then move away from trying to please everyone else.

Let fear go. Don’t feed it anymore. Acknowledge the fear and then do the thing anyway. If we fail, we’ve learned how not to do it. Maybe, just maybe, we also learn that failing isn’t the end of the world.

Letting Go of the Past


I just spent the last couple of hours going through our old email address. It’s one of the few things left that tie us to our birth name and our past. For some reason, we’ve hung on to this email address as if letting it go would unravel us. We’ve held on tight to emails that have long outlived their usefulness. We’ve made all kinds of excuses as to why we needed it.

Guess what?

We don’t need it. It’s been a cement block tied to our ankle. We’ve been able to move forward but that email address keeps returning us to the past, making us feel like we have to hide behind it in certain situations. It became a wall to hide behind so that we could keep our current email address -safe- or even untainted by the things we didn’t want to deal with from our past. Those things were always sent that way. Easier to put out of mind. Easier to use the we-can-deal-with-that-later mindset.

Hiding from things and stashing things away in our old email address doesn’t look like progress. It almost feels like enabling ourselves to live that almost creepy double life. Some stuff is for Sarah to deal with, the rest is for us? I understand that there are many of us, but none of us respond to that name. That is our dead name, and hopefully, we will have the legal steps done soon to change it. It’s in process.

That being said, things still need to be handled. We don’t have to hide behind that wall. We can put aside the enabling behavior and commit to one or the other. We’re not in danger anymore. The only person we were ever in physical danger from has left this world.

Today I changed our email address in most places to reflect our current one. And without fanfare or tears, I hit the delete account button. There’s nothing in our way now. Our past is behind us. We have learned from it and continue to grow. We are committed to our name and our life as it is, not as it was. And we don’t need the old email address to validate our past.

Clicking delete account was like letting go of one of the few remaining cement blocks around our ankle. We can move more freely now. It’s past time to walk away.