www.pactforthecure .. Offering Hope for the Helpless Suffering PPD

•March 28, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Thank you to the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill , for this initiative.  I will forever be indebted to your servitude.

This past week I noticed a story on CNN of an upcoming app that was to be released. I am submitting this after receiving an email today giving me permission to submit my article to the organization responsible for this International study of women suffering/or having suffered from Post Partum Depression, and/or, Psychosis. It is my sincere hope that you will spread this information in an effort to draw attention to this program. They are looking to collect thousands of participants for this study.  You can find the app, for free.  Look for PPD ACT app.  I found it through the Apple Store.

I literally had tears running down my face when I read that this initiative was taking place. In 1984, at the time of my episode, there was not much information readily available to women suffering from PPD. This study will no doubt change that, and with it, the lives of thousands upon thousands of women. It is my understanding that one in five women will experience some sort of the so called, ‘baby blues’ and some will not be as fortunate as those of us who have survived the mayhem of insanity that swallowed our souls. Thankfully, we have returned to tell a story, using genetic markers they may one day find the answer to helping others from being driven into the abyss.

Bring hope to those who have lost theirs by sharing this initiative.  Again, I thank you.


This original post was submitted in May 31st of 2013.Story of My Life Challenge…Etched upon my heart…

Jenni, It’s Day 31, and a Friday. Somehow I managed to write for all 31 days of your May Challenge (although, somehow a post of mine is time-stamped for the last day of April?…we’ll count it anyway, okay girlfriend? Thanks, I knew you would understand).

Today’s post, our last one, is writing about:

“A Vivid Memory”

This may take me all of today and well into the night. I had written in an earlier post that I would revisit something. I made a special promise to my oldest daughter. And today is the day I fulfill that promise. It began the day that she was born.

She arrived three weeks early. And, just like any new child’s arrival she came without a warranty clause, a type-written instruction manual and no return address label.

I’d practiced the natural birthing process, The Bradley method. The 8.25 months of pregnancy went without a hitch, except for mom catching the flu at five months of pregnancy.

Birthing went almost according to plan. No pain meds, no spinal block, but after several hours from having my water break, the doctor(s) where concerned that infection or stress of labor may cause concerns to the unborn baby. They prescribed Pitocin, and with knowledge I’d gained in birthing class, I clung to my hope of having a natural child-birth, but was also warned that the induction could produce rather strong contractions, and it did not offer a buffering from any pain that I would incur by its introduction. I kept with Plan A. Let me bear this baby, naturally. (The following link provides further details on Pitocin via Yahoo)


Now, I have to give my doctors and St. Francis hospital in Tulsa, kudos for the way they helped my delivery. My labor had begun at work, around 8:30 in the morning, and by 10:00 a.m., I was strapped to a gurney, and plugged into all the machinery a labor and delivery room can offer for the monitoring of baby and mama. Noon came, but no lunch, who cares though, laboring the birthing of a baby you really have hunger on the last of your lists of wants.

Hubby and I logged miles around the nurses desk and lobby. Too many to count, and at one point a nurse beckoned me back to my appointed room for a vitals check and centimeter observation. I tried resting, but I was too anxious. I was on top of the world and could not wait to see my, Megan Kathleen. I had dreamt of this moment for so long. The afternoon rolled on, more walking, more monitoring, and finally at six p.m., my doctor arrives and tells me that he thinks it’s time we get this baby something to speed up her arrival. It’s that drug, Pitocin. I agree, but only after he can confirm that I can still birth her naturally, no pain meds, spinal taps, nada, zip and zero. He assures me he will follow my directive, but warns me that the drug used to induce labor can also cause severe labor pains, and if the time came that he felt it was too much for baby and me he would medically do what he needed. I couldn’t fight with him there. He’s the educated soul. He graduated medical school, a certificate that required 12 years of laborious studies. Let’s rock and roll! You carry the knowledge and I’ll try marathon walking until this unborn baby charges to the finish line. Deal?

Shortly after six my husband’s family arrived from Texas. Someone mentioned they were hungry. The folks had spent four hours en route, and I know that Cliff hasn’t eaten since breakfast. I knew that I couldn’t, but more importantly, as the Pitocin’s effects began to work on my body, and labor earnestly began, eating was the furthest thing from my mind. I asked them to go, give me a breather, grab some food, enjoy themselves. Linger if they wished. Why hell, I’ve been here all day and it looks as if I’ll be here all night trying to birth this baby.

8:30 p.m., and where in the heck were those fools? Did they not have any clue about what I was going through? I’m not a screamer, but I do enjoy a hair-pulling now and then. The R.N. assisting me was becoming less than jovial as I started practicing my Bradley method of breathing. Every now and then she would ask, “Are you sure you don’t want something for your pain?”

“Sister, where were you when I gave my directive? Is my clipboard of info missing from the foot of this bed? Has the doctor given YOU the board certification to overtake his assigned SEAT at my party?”

I tried to deliver it humorously. I tried to cajole her into seeing my side of it. She tried to get me to see her side. We both failed, Communication Skills 101.


The little girl dances into my world after midnight. Drug free from day one, but moms chucking her insides out and there are four nurses pummeling me, explaining something about blood flow, placenta, oh hell, I don’t know the jest of it all! I was too busy loosing my insides, suffering a notorious headache and begging for water.

Now, the vivid memory.

I am not sure how to write about it, other than to say that it belongs to my Megan. It belongs to her and I. Beginning early in the days before we even left the hospital, something was amiss. Sadly, I felt no maternal bliss, and I feared that I knew nothing. All those books I’d read on childbirth, the before and after. None of those had prepared me for the roller-coaster ride , the journey in to hell and the fear that would one day it would descend into thoughts of infanticide.

I warn you. This is not an easy read, and although Megan is almost two thousand miles from me today, I would give anything to sit beside her and hold her hand as I attempt to answer her questions and to allay her fears. But I can’t, and since I have promised that I would find a way to communicate something to her within the 31 days of May’s Challenge, today is our day.

I could not sleep. For three days in the hospital, and for days, off and on, once we were home. Irrational fears would enter my head and I would quickly try to change my thinking. I cuddled my angel. I played with her. I fed her and I connected with her as best I could, but I was afraid that those so-called baby blues would consume me. I tried talking to my husband about them, but he didn’t get it, and how could he, had anyone in the male species been through this birthing thing?

Days dragged, literally. I became consumed with schedules. I laboriously centered my life around a list of ‘to-do’s’ to fill my time, to keep me busy. But, I still was not sleeping. And then one day I could not eat. Literally. I could not swallow. I choked each time I tried. But I had to eat and drink, I had to sleep. I had a little one that relied upon me and I was breastfeeding, so it was more important than ever that I find a way to get ahold of myself.

Then I found myself dwelling on a pair of scissors. I’d been in the baby’s room wrapping a gift. I saw the scissors, and I remember thinking, “These could kill the baby.”

The thought became obsessive. It overwhelmed me with grief and shame. And try as I might, I could not shake the image, nor the auditory, “These could kill the baby.”

I tried hiding the scissors, but I couldn’t find a place to put them, somewhere that was ‘safe’ … someplace where they couldn’t talk to me.

I forced myself to put them back in the spot where I always kept them. If they could talk to me. I could talk to them. I could tell them, “NO!”

For days I fought this battle, until I realized it was beyond me. I attempted to express my concern for the baby to my husband, but I did not tell him about the scissors, or the voices.

I became so exhausted. And then the hallucinatory began its foray. I was fighting an army, and I was ill-equipped for its challenge.

I no longer felt connected to anyone except for my baby. I felt as if I could protect her I could win the inner war, but I was losing.

The phone would ring. I wouldn’t answer it. I had nothing I could communicate.

Postpartum depression accompanied by psychosis

This is not a war to win. It cages a soul and will not allow reason of any kind. I prayed, I begged and I pleaded. You can have me, but you cannot have my daughter.

On this particular morning I thought I’d heard a knock at my front door, or was that coming from the back door? I trusted nothing. I sat in the nursery until the pounding stopped, and the sound of what I thought was my name being called, ended. Rocking my angel. I sobbed so violently. I wanted the voices and the visions to go away. I wanted nothing more than to save my baby from myself.

Something made me pause. Was that the front lock-set being opened, the door flinging open, where those real voices?

They found me. Jo and Prescilla. They found me, and they did not let go of me. One took the baby, the other took the phone directory.

And every chance I get, I tell them, “Thank you.”

I spent the following three and a half months in a locked Psych ward.

Each one of us has a story that shames us, it can trap us in a sort of hell, but sometimes to escape hell, we must find words to express its grievance. I used to think this would be one that I could not share for fear of losing someone whom I love(d). Now I fear that if I don’t share it, someone may lose their way, they may find themselves lost, alone, aberrant, and of course, crazy. I would rather lose every friend I have for the sacrifice of gaining that one that reached out to me in need. The one that discovered hope, when they felt there was none left. But, if you can find clarity, if you can trust that there are people in this world that care first for others, and second for themselves, than you, and they, will walk with you through hell. When we have true friends, they don’t leave us when the going gets rough. They stop at nothing to see that we realize how important we are, in their life. They don’t call you, Pyscho, MisFit, Crazy. They call you, Friend. That having us is a joy, a blessing, a God-send. A true friend does not judge, does not keep a score card and knows that we are them, should they ever need us and not out of guilt or because a favor needs returning. No, a true friend stands by knowing that without our connection we are only half of ourselves.

When others walked out, you walked in. You asked for nothing in return. You never used my illness to shame me, to discount me, to write me off. You stood beside me, carried me through my darkest hours. Prescilla Senn, Jo McCormack, thank you for seeing me when I could not see myself. But more than anything, thank you for saving my Megan from the psychotic lunatic that I had become. We have fought hard to win, and without each of you, I would have lost. It took three and a half months, out-of-state, in a mental institution, numbers of medications and therapy sessions, but I came home, loving and vowing that one day I would share this story.

Never give up hope. When you are at your weakest, grasp for straws. Dial for help. Swallow your pride. Do not fear that you will be labeled, CRAZY, for the rest of your life, even by those you thought would stand behind you through thick and thin. One of the best pieces of advice given to me were these words:

“They already think you’re crazy. Nothing you do, or say, will change their opinion. Absolutely nothing, therefore, be yourself. Only you know the journey and the victory.”

To Megan,

I promised you I would finish a tale that I had begun earlier in one of my posts. I think I even noted Day 16 as the day that I would write it. Day 16, arrived, but the time didn’t feel ‘just right’. Today it does. I believe you will recall the post, original, and if not, I’ll help you retrieve it.


“The Year of Bill”

•January 5, 2016 • 11 Comments

A tribute to her Grandpa


(Comments are turned off at this time.  I want to thank each and every one of my followers for their thoughts and prayers.  Feel free to post a note to Mallory.  I think she’d like knowing you were going to help her celebrate the gift of her Grandpa’s love.  My other daughter wrote a beautiful piece too.  Perhaps I can get her to share it.)

May all of you have a wonderful and prosperous, New Year!)



•November 25, 2015 • 37 Comments

Thanksgiving, a time to review our lives and give thanks for our many blessings.  And this year is especially poignant.  Our family was blessed with abundance and Grace.  

My father-in-law was diagnosed with stage four lung cancer, and this past Christmas was given one to three months to live.  God willing, Thanksgiving Day we will be sharing and rejoicing in his company.

As our Country moves through these challenging times, I am reminded of our gift of freedom.  Let us rejoice and give thanks to every man and woman who has fought to defend our right to live in peace.   Yes, we have many obstacles before us, but let us never forget to be mindful that united, hand-in-hand, we are capable of overcoming what some may believe is impossible.  Let us stand with our friends, around the world, knowing that the evil among us are not to be feared.  Thankful and grateful are we that love has no border, cannot be confined, and will always lead us to Peace.

Thank you for following me on my journey.  I am blessed by your presence.  Happy Thanksgiving to all, no matter what day of the year you set aside to collectively come together in gratitude.


Robert Golstein’s, The ‘Respect’ Award, Recipient

•November 15, 2015 • 40 Comments

(In my haste, I consistently referred to Melinda by the name, “Melanie.”  My sincere apologies to you, Melinda)

I am blessed to have been awarded Robert Goldstein’s, Respect Award, from Melinda, author of, Looking For the Light Blog  .

Robert Goldstein’s

The ‘Respect’ Award

Clarion Alley 2012

The “Respect” Award is my personal award for fellow bloggers who consistently reach out to other bloggers, offer support, are kind, struggle to understand differences in people, and who treat themselves and other people with kindness and respect.

You don’t have to do anything for this award.

You can choose to copy the Award Picture and give the award to the people who have earned your respect or you can do nothing.

This is my way of saying thank you. You have earned my respect.  – Robert Goldstein


To be awarded this is more than humbling; it’s awe-inspiring.  I met Melinda a few months back, discovering that we both live in the North Texas area.  We have yet to meet, personally.  My sweet, dear friend is fighting a courageous battle with Lyme disease, an overwhelming case that leaves her weak, but never broken in spirit.  And, it is her spirit that drew me to her blog.  How can one not be drawn to a light that beams brightly?  Light brings energy, guides and enlightens, and such is the life of Melinda and of the author and founder of, The ‘Respect’ Award.  I encourage everyone to discover bothMelinda and Robert NOTE:  Melinda has had WordPress issues and is currently attempting to navigate her blog from lookingforthelight.wp.com over to lookingforthelightblog.wordpress.comRobert can be found at RobertGoldstein.com


I can’t think of one of my followers that do not deserve to be honored.  Each of you bring a joy that only YOU can deliver.  I sat for a long time trying to make a decision, and in that period of time I told myself I could only choose two from over 362 of my followers.  Below, you will find Ann, she is dedicated to helping those who suffer from Mental Illness.  A professional counselor that hails from the Boston area of Massachusetts.  Follow her positive and altruistic blog and you will discover how she illuminates the world of those she works with, as well as those who follow her blog.

Next, meet the gentleman that is dedicated to honoring all our Veterans, both within the United States, the U.K., Australia, and points beyond.  Take a history lesson from each post.  He is networking with other Vets and historians to bring us knowledge learned, forgotten or never made available to us before.  Truly a guardian for all of those that have served their countries.  I feel honored each time I see a posting from G.P.; I am more informed than ever before, and therefore, honored to acknowledge his work and the work of those who submit their stories.

Thank you to Ann, G.P., and to all of you for your support, love, and the illumination you bring to my journey.  I am blessed.

Ann Koplow

GP Cox

What is intolerance and identify its forms? How best to come out of it all?

•November 4, 2015 • 9 Comments

Reblogged by permission

This post is rather lengthy, but well worth reading.  Authored by Harbans, a gentleman author from India, I could not help but find many correlations to the situation(s) that we currently see within the United States.  The media is reacting to incite, rather than to calm the waters of discontent and malcontent within our nations.  There is much more to be gleaned by this eloquent outline.  Again, I do hope you will take the time to read this. Please drop a line to the author and offer your thoughts.  I’m quite sure he would appreciate any/all feedback.


What is intolerance and identify its forms? How best to come out of it all? Intolerance is supposed to have taken place when we do not accept others’ point of view or belief, are not in sync with others’ sensitivities or habits which are different to that of ours, etc. This intolerance could be due […]


“Happy Halloween” from Hannah

•October 31, 2015 • 26 Comments

Not really my favorite holiday

The doorbell rings constantly, small people dressed in obnoxious outfits shout something about,  “Trick or Treat!”  My siblings and I, the three felines, do all that we can to avoid the foray of strangers and their insane ways.  The cats leave me out in the open though, squeezing themselves into spaces that will only hold them.  And the worst of it?  My mother encourages me to join in on the holiday festivities.  She knows I love children, what she can’t understand is how much I dislike seeing them dressed as if the Mother Ship landed and they all rolled onto the tarmac, located our street address and instantly hit, ‘The Big One!’

A few days back I thought I’d try something.  It was the day I saw her decorating for this ridiculous holiday.  We’d had a nice rain, something like 9.5 inches.  It was time for my last nightly visit to the backyard.  I swam back to the compost pile and found something interesting.  Mom tried calling me in several times, even sloshing through the deep water, flashlight in hand, attempting to pry me away from my snack box.  I was able to ignore three or four of her pleading attempts to get me inside, but finally I caved.  This woman was soaking wet, had an attitude and appeared to be on the verge of calling for reinforcements.  (That would be the cats.)  I caved and headed into the light.  OMG! Dripping wet, mouth wide open and words falling forward upon my ears, “Hannah!  Look. At.  You!  What on earth? “  

We entered into the den.  Slowly.  Cautiously.  I knew exactly what was expected.  I walked straight into my cubby.  Mom quickly disappeared.  I feared what was to come next.  And sure enough my fear materialized.  She had the camera.  Something important was about to be documented.  Oh Lordy; not good!  It’s 11:30 at night.  Dad’s out-of-town on business.  All of her friends are surely sound asleep.

IMG_1600 IMG_1606 IMG_1610 IMG_1615

I stayed here, panting, trying to catch my breath.  Mom left the room after she snapped these photos’ and I had no idea what was coming next. Remember, it’s late.  Time for bed.  What could mom possibly be plotting? Just about then, she rounded the corner, towel in hand and spoke these four words, “Go see Mr. Sprinkles.”  I didn’t argue.  As she removed my mud encrusted collar, wiped my webbed feet, I tucked my tail between my legs and followed her into the shower.

She never spanks me.  Never yells at me and is the best mom anyone could ever hope for, but look at what I have done.  She’s tired.  She’s old.  She’s wanting to go to bed, but now she can’t.

The scent of cucumber and mint begin to waft thru the air.  The warm water and massaging of the soap ease my tired and weary bones. But poor mom, she sits at the foot of the shower stall, soaked now by very dirty water.  And then I suddenly realize, I never brought her the treat for my trick.  I’ll get that possum come morning.  He’ll be floating.  He lost his footing right before my deadline.

Kissed by raindrops

•October 22, 2015 • 43 Comments

A promise of rain, an opportunity to transplant, but then a reminder that this may be a torrential water fest.  I took a chance and moved a crape myrtle, but made myself stop at that.  Would you like to see my work?  Any arborist would surely admire it, from a distance, especially if he were blindfolded.


The chair fainted, delighted so by my ingenuity.  I used cable ties to secure this beauty to some supports.

Well, rain soon began to fall. I quickly scooted about the yard to catch what may be the final blooms of this years flowers.




Confetti Lantana


Marigold (variety unknown, but extra-special because she was gifted to me by my sweet next-door neighbor, Carol.)


Pink Penta, loved dearly by both butterfly and bees.


Cigar Plant, Cuphea.  Magnet for the hummingbirds.


White Penta.  Magnet too, for butterfly and bee.


Not just another green plant.  This is Comfrey, the plant produces the best organic feed for anything you grow.  Invaluable!

She blooms a pretty pink, tinker-bell shaped flower, but I try to keep those to a minimum.  Her greenery is where the gold is located.


A Delphenium.  She is poisonous and was placed in front of some Foxgloves that the Spring floods killed.

They paired beautifully together, so if this latest flood doesn’t get the girl, I’ll plant Foxglove with her in 2016.


Milkweed.  Nectar extraordinaire to the Monarch Butterfly population.

Last years plants drowned, I replanted and to my surprise… yes, SURPRISE!  The re-plant is

the invasive number.  Oh My Goodness!  What to do, what to do?

My whole back yard will be overrun this time next year.  But isn’t this a remarkable beauty?

Yes.  Yes, she is.


Borage, dressed in pink.  She grew from a re-seed of a blue.


I found this and transplanted it into my garden.  She’s an angel cat.  Not rare, but exceedingly beautiful.

Don’t you love her?  Yes.  Yes, I knew you would.


This one is for Scott and Barb.  Here’s my sweet potato vine.  Funny story:

One day I was clearing debris and something got caught on the vine.  Up came a good portion of it,

along with a potato.  Awe shucks!  I thought I had destroyed her.  A month later and she is bigger than ever!