"If you have knowledge, let others light their candle in it." -Margaret Fuller
One day (I can't remember when, exactly), as I dragged myself through the dark tunnel of PPMD, I came across a candle. It burned brightly. It called out to my soul and to my heart. At the time, my own candle was pretty much out, but that candle gave me hope. It helped me find my way out of darkness and isolation, to safety, support, and love. From that flame, I was able to re-light my own candle. That flame was Postpartum Progress.
10 years ago, Katherine Stone started Postpartum Progress. Countless women and families have been helped in many ways. I and my family stand among them. Postpartum Progress made a huge difference to me. It was helpful beyond words to find a site with so much good information written in a way that I could understand, a community of women to help support me, a safe haven to let me know that I wasn't alone and I really was a good mom, a warrior. Postpartum Progress has been a God-send to so many.
Today, I dedicate my blog to celebrating Katherine and Postpartum Progress. 10 years of dedication to awareness, education, and outreach is kind of a Big Freaking Deal. Postpartum Progress has been a game-changer for women with PPMD and today, I'm throwing virtual confetti in honor of an amazing person who had an idea and then put that idea into action.
Katherine, my dear friend, you beautiful wonderful soul, you rock my socks off! And I put socks on specifically to type that, which should tell you exactly how much you mean to me, since I pretty much never wear socks. Thank you for everything you have done and continue to do. I am forever grateful to God for leading me to you and to Postpartum Progress. Because of Postpartum Progress, I got the courage to share my story and to reach out to a fantastic community of some of the strongest women I know, who have become friends and sisters of my heart and my spirit. I hope you never go a day without the knowledge that you are loved. As we celebrate the birthday of Postpartum Progress, know that your candle has been a much-needed beacon to help light the way for many who couldn't see on our own. Some day, I will get to meet you in person (and I will squeal and make a fool of myself and probably end up a blubbering mess as I tell you what an honor it is to meet one of my honest-to-goodness heroes who helped save my life, my sanity, my marriage, and my family, who has become a friend). For now, I'll have to stick with sniffling my way through the beautiful stories I've been reading about the other women you've helped. We are many.
*eats more ice cream*
To everyone reading this, I'd like to share the words I borrowed from Good Girl Gone Redneck:
If you'd like to help support Katherine's efforts with a donation to Postpartum Progress you can do so very easily online. Postpartum Progress is a non-profit organization and your donation will be tax deductible. Your donation will go towards supporting an organization that supports ALL mamas EVERYWHERE.
If you or anyone you know is experiencing symptoms of postpartum mood disorders, please consider reaching out for help. Postpartum Support International has a toll-free support line you can call 1.800.944.4PPD and a map of local support resources for you.
Looking to talk to mamas like you? #PPDChat is a weekly Twitter chat where you can find discussions related to living your life postpartum.
Looking for hope? A reminder that you WILL get through this? Check out the Warrior Mom Photo Album and see these smiling faces. That will be you - soon.