I used to be really embarrassed about telling people that I was divorced. I used to be mortified to walk around my community. Why? My wasband chose himself and infidelity over our family. 
But then I stopped giving a shit.
Unless you have been cheated on, you have no idea what it is like to trust again.  Unless you have been abused, you have no idea what it is to deal with that kind of trauma. Unless you’ve been divorced,  you have no idea what goes into making a decision like divorce.
No one just wakes up and decides to get a divorce for no reason…especially when kids are involved.  Divorces are really, really hard.  Your whole life gets flipped upside down and you have to start all over again. 
Let’s be real, no good marriage ends in divorce.
I tried….for years. I tried everything to make it work but then I realized I was the only one doing the work. I was the only one changing. I was the only one being faithful. I was the only one being abused. I was also the one showing my kids what to expect from marriage.
So I made a decision to save myself and my kids. I stopped feeling embarrassed or guilty and so should you.  
I realized that the people who are passing judgement have no idea how hard it was for any one to have to make the decision to divorce. They have  no idea how much work gets put into the marriage to try to make it work before coming to the conclusion that divorce is the only option. They have no idea how difficult it is to deal with lawyers, courts and the legal system. They have no idea the financial and emotional toll that divorce takes on the entire family.
Not everyone is going to understand your divorce.  Not everyone’s going to agree with your divorce. It would be amazing if family and friends supported us and our choices.  It would be awesome if people kept their opinions to themselves. However, sometimes those things are just not possible.
People are going to be judgmental regardless. So let them judge! 
That is on them and not you or me.
I stopped giving a shit…and so should you.


Holiday hints from Krissy Claus.
First the easy stuff….Do not count calories. Do not wear a watch. Try doing what other people feel like doing rather than being compelled to always make the plan. Stay in pj’s as long as possible each day. Getting coffee, bagels, donuts or tacos in pajamas is not only socially acceptable, it’s encouraged. Get down and look at your children when they talk to you. Or if they are getting taller than you these days, look up. Make eye contact. Cook someone’s favorite meal. Or cook your favorite and deliver to some friends. Sit by the fire and leave your cell phone in another room. Let the kids frost the cookies, trash the kitchen and get high on icing. Watch Christmas Vacation. Make pancakes with holiday M&M’s in them. If it’s not a hassle to make a fire in the fireplace, it’s an invitation. Pet your dog, especially right behind the ears the way they like it. When you grab your last minute stocking stuffers from the drugstore (admit it, I’ll see you there), pick up a couple scarves, socks, or fleece blankets to hand out to homeless people when you drive by – you can even let your kids do the honors and feel warm inside.
Now these are a bit more challenging but Krissy has faith in you! Put away your politics for a while and just love on people. Be kind …..especially to those “sandpaper people” in your life. The people who bug you are in your life for a reason, you may as well love them because they have something to teach you (as my friend says on the subject of judgment, “You spot it, you got it.” THAT makes you think twice). Don’t assume people know you love them, be clear. Ask questions and LISTEN to the responses. Active listening is a form of love. Accept people where THEY are right now…not where you want them to be or where you are in your comfort zone….you don’t have to step all the way out of your box but perhaps take down part of a wall. Think of someone you know (maybe not even very well) who has had a tough year this year and pick up the phone or put pen to paper and wish them a happier new year. Go for an evening walk and take in all the lights. Turn off all the lights in the house except the tree and sit there, at least once, late at night and recall what you are grateful for. Try to make peace with (instead of sense of) the things you don’t feel as grateful for. You are not too old or jaded to believe in magic. Everything you need is right here – every day, and especially at the holidays.


There will always be critics, haters and difficult people in your life. Those people that judge you for so many reasons. No matter how sincere your intentions may be, no matter how positive your actions may be, there will be those who find a way to criticize you. For one reason or another, someone will find a reason to project their insecurities, negativity, and fears onto you and your life, and you’ll have to deal with it. When that happens, keep in mind that the criticism is their problem, not yours.
I have learned to embrace the criticism and use it as fuel. It has much about myself and about my critics. I am grateful for those that want to judge and criticize me. Grateful for haters? YES! Without them I would never have known how much I can tolerate before I say “enough.” I would never have learned to create and hold boundaries. I would not have had the courage to stand on my own two feet and live my truth. I would never have realized that I only needed to fight for me to protect my heart. I am grateful that though their judgements I have learned what I stand for and what is important to me. Without those difficult “sandpaper” people in my like I never would have learned to love myself, becoming the woman I am today.
I occasionally look back to remember what I leave behind and to see how far I have come. I’m not upset or angry about the past, nor am I envious of the people and things I leave in the past. I leave behind people to deal with their own demons. I leave behind all the hate, anger, judgements, and criticism of others. I leave behind all that no longer serves me.
I look towards the future and move forward. Every day is a new day. I choose not to give power to the critics and the haters. I choose not to allow anyone but me control my destiny and my future. Those critics are afraid of a strong woman. They are afraid of a woman who has stepped into her own truth and light. A confident and courageous woman is intimidating to others. Why? She has nothing to fear, nothing to lose but everything to gain. She carries herself with pride and dignity. She might stumble here and there but that crown never wavers.
When you’re being criticized, it means you’re making a difference. So rather than allowing criticism to stop you, smile, straighten your crown and step forward into your greatness! Always look forward and keep moving forward!


The first time I went to therapy I was in 18 or 19. My mom wanted me to go with her and talk about our “issues.” I went to make her happy and listened. I was not there willingly thus got not one thing from that visit. I hated every second I was in that office.
Other people that went to therapy. It always seemed like something for the rich to navel gaze thus it was not for me. I did not have the time nor the money.
My return to therapy was not by choice. It was court ordered. Yes, it was ordered by a judge as a condition of my court supervision. I had to attend and complete a therapy program. Why did I have court supervision? I was arrested for shoplifting. Yes, shoplifting. That is another story for another day but it was one of the best/worst things to happen to me.
Once again, I did not want to be there. However, I did not want to go to jail so I took the opportunity to participate and learn. The therapist told me I had anxiety that needed medication which meant another, different doctor in order to get the prescriptions. So, I went, met the new doctor and got the meds. I took the medication but was not sure it was working as I did not like how I was feeling. I was trying to hold it all together and keep everything all a secret from my kids and everyone else. I didn’t know if my anxiety was from keeping the secret, the shame of it all or from something else.
Continued appointments with the therapist led to her diagnosing the source of my anxiety and depression. It was my marriage.
Nope…..I was not talking about that. She did not have to go home and live in my house….I did. Thus, I was not discussing my marriage. I was in serious denial, terrified she would see right through me. Once I completed the program, I stopped taking the meds and going to therapy all together. None of it was working and being called “crazy” at home was making it worse. I went to back to court with certificate of completion and then moved on with my life….or so I thought.
My anxiety did not get better…it got worse. Much worse. I really thought I was going crazy. I was forgetting things and having to write down everything. The panic attacks in stores had only gotten worse. The mere thought of shopping and stores caused me to hyperventilate.
I secretly took a day off work and drove to an inpatient facility. I went though all the intake steps and met with 3 different doctors. I had wanted them to tell me that I was fine and overreacting. That did not happen. All suggested inpatient care. Nope….not happening. I was a mom and had a job. I could not do it. I drove away knowing I really needed help but was not courageous enough to get it…yet. I was so filled with shame and falling deeper into the rabbit hole of denial, shame and depression.
For the next few years, I used running to try to manage my ever growing anxiety and depression. I was literally trying to outrun my mental health issues. After filing for divorce, I was sinking fast. I was really falling apart. My lawyer told me that therapy was a non-negotiable. So I called 4 or 5 different therapists that specialized in divorce and anxiety, leaving messages for each one. Truth be told, I cried while leaving each message. I must have sounded like such a prize! Who wouldn’t want to take me on as a patient?!
One therapist called back. Funny enough, she had also been recommended by a friend. During that call, she talked me off the first ledge and we scheduled an appointment for later in the week.
I started meeting with her bi weekly. Yes, I sat on her couch 2 times a week and just cried most of the time. With her help I started to open up. I was literally coming apart at the seams, falling apart all over her office. I apologized at every appointment. It was a mess. I was a mess.
For each appointment I would show up with my boatload of emotional baggage that she would slowly help me unpack it. It was NOT fun. As a matter of fact, it sucked. I left each appointment feeling like I had run another marathon…just emotionally (instead of physically) worn out. I also left with homework I never wanted to do because it was WORK! However, this time I was ready to really do the work. This time I needed to do the work. My life depended on me doing the work.
I was finally ready to face the source of my anxiety and depression head on. She, just as the therapists before, told me what I had not wanted to hear before……the source of anxiety and depression was my marriage.
I learned the terms narcissism, narcissistic abuse, gaslighting, emotional abuse and how it all took a toll on my mental heath over the years. It is still work to overcome the triggers to regulate my anxiety and depression, but that is why I continue to attend therapy and do the work.
I am a huge advocate of therapy for anyone of any age. It takes time to find the right therapist and you have to be ready to do the work. You have to be ready to own your life and your choices but it is so worth it. Invest the time and energy in yourself and your mental health. You are worth it.


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This morning I had a socially distant coffee date with an old friend. We sat down and dove right in like no time had passed. We didn’t talk about politics, masks, or pandemics. We talked about stress, anxiety and the current status of our mental health. We talked about feeling disconnected and not focused. We talked about how were each had been forgetful and feeling “lost”. We talked a lot about anxiety. Anxiousness over our own health, our current state of employment, our seemingly endless loss of control and structure. I have has many similar conversations with friends recently.
Anxiety is natural and normal for most people. It is a fleeting feeling that comes and goes. Most people can manage it. However, for some people it is more than a an occasional feeling. It is a constant feeling that rarely goes away. It is taking the smallest thing and catastrophizing it into something horrible.
During a regular day, we are busy and have little time to think of all these small things. We are too busy living life and moving from one things to another. We also are surrounded by people that redirect those anxious thoughts and helps us remain on course. Now, during this pandemic, we have slowed the pace. We are alone, or with the same people, at all times. We have more time to think and “navel gaze” about what worries us. This becomes the proverbial rabbit hole. We start to worry about something and with nothing but time, we start to travel down that rabbit hole. Once that spiral journey begins it is difficult to crawl back out on your own.
People are posting all sorts of wonderful parts of quarantine….family dinners, game nights, etc. but is that the reality? We will never know and we should not hold ourselves to that standard. People I have spoken with are so concerned about judgement. We have become a society that is quick to snap off a post or comment that is filled with judgement. Why? Does that make us feel better? More superior? More powerful?
Mental health is an issue that I am passionate about as it so important and yet so taboo. People like medical issues that fit neatly in a box and have a cure. They like things they know and can see. Mental health is not the same for everyone. It does not manifest itself in the same way with everyone and there is no clear course of treatment that is the same for everyone. Say ‘Cancer’ and people understand. Say ‘Mental Health’ and people not only don’t understand, they downplay it, saying you are “crazy”. This drives the issues further underground and often makes them worse. Knowing we are not alone and not being judged is so affirming in so many ways. Reaching out for help, sharing your troubles, makes you more vulnerable but it also makes you stronger. You learn and you grow. You get better.
Does it all happen over night? Nope it takes work…lots of work…with yourself, with a therapist and with your friends. You are not crazy or lazy or silly. You are a feeling person in a changing world that is in need a support. Find your support system. Find those people that you trust and can listen, helping you address those uncomfortable feelings. I guarantee you that you are not alone!
If you are not sure who to trust, reach out. I am here. I will create a non-judgemental space for you to express yourself and listen to you. I will allow you to be yourself and see yourself in the most real way. I will help you move from vulnerability to validation. Scary? Sure. But isn’t everything worthwhile scary at first?
I am here and together we move forward in the healthiest way possible.