August of last year I reached a crossroads. I was tired of struggling with depression and knew I had to make an active change. At the suggestion of my therapist at the time, I made an appointment with a psychiatrist to learn more about how medication may help rid me of the dark cloud that I couldn’t seem to escape out of on my own.
It just so happened that at this time I learned about Vedic meditation from Arden Martin. She described it as a simple meditation technique that required no effort and it sounded very appealing to me. I read up on the benefits of this Vedic meditation and got curious. Could it help me? So, the same week I met with the psychiatrist I also took a Vedic meditation course.
From the psychiatrist, I learned a lot about my options with medication. I felt comforted to know that I now had a doctor who knew my needs and whom I could contact if that was the route I wanted take. The following evening during my first Vedic meditation, I got in touch with an unfamiliar place inside myself that I can only describe as a nice warm hug.
I decided to experiment with daily meditation for a while and see where it went before pursuing medication. It has now been over a year and I can honestly say my meditation practice has changed my life.
I have risen out of the hole of depression and found a whole new perspective. On a (mostly) daily basis I dive into meditation and find that nice warm hug again and again. Not every meditation is blissful and some feel as if they go on forever, but if miss a day I crave it and always return back.
I don’t know what the future brings and I’m still open to the idea of medication if I need it. There’s no need to suffer and I think medication is a savior for so many people struggling with their mental health as I did. Today though, I reflect in gratitude about the meditation practice that changed my life.
Today I meditated in the chapel at my daughter’s school and these words came flooding through me. I share this all not to prove anything or preach anything but just to say, it IS possible to find light when you’re in the dark. And who knows, you may find that light right inside of you.
A few weeks ago my husband and I had a Baby Blessing for Emily at our new home. It was the most special and beautiful day. You may be wondering what a Baby Blessing is exactly. Well, we are not religious people so a baptism did not make sense for our family. We are spiritual and raising Emily with a belief in a higher power is important to us. We also believe family is the most important part of her life. So we decided to set aside a day to honor our daughter and celebrate her life amongst the company of her closest family.
We had buffet style food and drinks and everyone hung out for a while. Then we had a little ceremony. I had been nervous about this part of the day wondering how it would all come together, but it worked out perfectly! Everyone naturally gathered in a circle at this point. Emily had fallen asleep in her carrier so while she wasn’t awake for it, she was there!
First, I thanked everyone for being there. I was very emotional having lost my grandmother earlier that same week. The cycle of life was all too evident in that moment. I also talked about Emily’s name. We chose “Emily” because we thought it was the most beautiful name- it sounds like a song. And “Rae” has an extra special significance. We originally chose the name to honor my grandfather Renato who went by “Ray”. We knew it was the absolute right choice when we realized each letter of the name “Rae” was the first initial of each of my grandparents. R for Renato, A for Angiola, and E for Elise. I know all over them are watching over her.
Next my mom, Emily’s Mema, read a prayer she wrote. Mema is a talented author and has written many beautiful prayers. I hadn’t read her special prayer for Emily prior to the day so it was a wonderful moment to hear it for the first time. Mema printed out a copy for everyone and rolled them up into scrolls so we could follow along. It was a priceless moment! She also framed the prayer and it now sits in Emily’s room where we can read it all the time.
The ceremony ended with Emily’s Aunt Jamie reading “Forever Young” by Bob Dylan. I had searched for a while to find the perfect words for this event, and thought that this song said it all. Aunt Jamie has been instrumental in Emily’s life. She was there for me throughout my pregnancy and any time I have needed her advice as a new mom. She did a beautiful job with the reading and I think we were all teary eyed!
The last thing we did was take group picture with the whole family, our village. I will treasure this photo forever!
One other detail I want to mention is the little wish box I had out (photo below). I asked everyone to write a special wish for Emily to read one day. I think the words she received will mean so much to her when she is older.
And that was that! From there we all enjoyed some cake and hung out for a while. I will never forget that day and am so happy we pulled it together after a very difficult week mourning my grandmother. My sweet Emily Rae has officially been welcomed into the world by her incredible family.