Tag Archives: Friends

Timmy’s Plum Shirts

Many of you know that I lost one of my best friends in June. This weekend, I’m attending a walk in his memory and I wanted to share why this is important to me.

Timmy's Plum Shirts - Raising Money to Support Suicide Prevention

Donate if you can, send love if you want to support us. Healing is a journey that will always continue on, and this weekend is a milestone part of that grieving and healing process.

watch here| watch on youtube | subscribe to my channel

Thank you for your love and support. Talk about depression and anxiety. Talk about mental health. Tell others that you can always get help. Tell yourself that you can always get help. Click here to read more about the walk, more about Timmy’s Plum Shirts and more about the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

And if you take just one thing away from this post, please let it be this: it’s okay to ask for help.



Filed under Life and Health


You! Yeah, you! I’m here! I want to share what I did for the last two weeks. This is all about my vacation to the Pacific Northwest with my college friends to explore, see Kenny’s life and live in the moment. I was SO stressed out before the trip, because I usually when I jet off to a different state, I have lots of business meetings and places to be. This was my first truly personal vacation since I lived in Europe for a semester in 2012, so this was different. Not many plans – just people flying in and meeting in Seattle, driving up to Vancouver (BC) and then down to spend the rest of the week in the Portland area. Everything else from there was up to us – places, food, times…. everything. And you know what? It was magical.

As I talked about in my last post, I’ve been through some serious life challenges just in the last few months. For a while, I wasn’t sure that I would be able to afford the trip or be with my friends continuously for 10 days without going insane-britta-mode, but everything that happened over the past several months lead me to one single conclusion: this trip was meant to happen, and I was meant to be on it. It’s the random nights and crazy stupid adventures that fill my memories from college and afterwards. So many memories I have of Timmy are from the most random impulses or inklings to go to some random place and do something somewhat random. If you live in the moment, you’re really actually living. Since Timmy’s no longer here to do it for himself, I gladly take on the burden to live life as large and as true as I can. This is me. This is who I am. This is who I want to be.

So here’s a brief rundown of my trip and the places we went, the things we saw and the beer and food we consumed. I’ll be making a book for my friends to have printed (just like the one I made for #BigMistakeBowl), and I will most definitely be Project Life-style scrapbooking the entire trip. We have a ton of fun being nerdy and making up hashtags, so our one for this trip was #FriendFestNW, and you can see what we posted all along our journey on instagram and twitter (and facebook if you’re friends with someone from the group). Oh, and I try my very best to only have one rule while traveling: don’t make any rules. :)

Day 0 (Thursday) – Let’s Go To Seattle!

Jake & me at MSP waiting for our flight

Jake & me at MSP waiting for our flight

– It all started when we flew to sea-tac and arrived at almost midnight Pacific time.
– We took Uber (a super awesome crowd-sourced towncar service) to our hotel for the night.
– Sleepy and ready for bed, we walked up to the desk at our hotel and were met with a solemn face. They had overbooked the hotel and didn’t have the room we originally reserved, but they did have one room left…. the Penthouse Suite. So we got upgraded for free to a hotel room markedly bigger than my own apartment. Man, that was the coolest thing ever. Even if it was just for a night and we’d only be there for about 11 hours, we had the Penthouse.


click to see the video on instagram of our Penthouse Suite!

– We couldn’t just go to bed in our ginormous hotel room without seeing what was around the block, though, so we stumbled upon The Hideout where our beer tasting of the NW began. The bar was dark, covered in art and absolute perfection. The bartender was my favorite of all time – welcoming us in with cool glasses of water and always being ready to pour another beer for us but just letting us experience the ambiance of the place. I can’t wait to go back to Seattle some day just so I can explore more of that part of the city. The vibe there was incredible, and it instantly felt like home.

Day 1 (Friday) – The Gang’s All Here

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-2

Motif hotel was amazing – they had recently switched the name from The Red Lion on Fifth (and NO ONE told us… tsk tsk!), but the revamped hotel may have been the fanciest one I’ve ever stayed in. It was fun just walking into the lobby or sitting on the porch, not to mention the awesome bar below the hotel with happy hour pretty much all day.
– Jake and I had a day to explore Pike’s Market, eat some great market food and shop in some really kitchy stores. We also got some smoked salmon (and yes, they threw it all the way across the counter like you see on tv) for a ridiculous amount of money and ate it on the bed in our hotel room while we waited for Kenny to drive up after his day of work.  We’re super classy, guys.
– We took some of the best views of Seattle by riding the Bainbridge ferry. I can’t wait to edit my pictures from that ride!
– Kenny arrived a little after 8 and we all jumped around and squealed and hugged until we were exhausted (okay, maybe I was the only one squealing). We took full advantage of happy hour drinks with Kenny and were so into talking that we almost didn’t notice when the rest of our friends showed up. Oh, but then there was a lot more jumping up and down and hugging. And beer.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-3

– The gang’s all here and reunited at last!

Day 2 (Saturday) – Doing Seattle Right

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-4

– This was my first (and thank goodness, only) hangover of the trip. Catching up had been so exciting the night before that I had lost track of how potent my beers were, and 4 strong beers for me = one pretty hungover Britta the next day. But I hopped on the struggle bus and took it to see some more awesome stuff around Seattle with my friends. You better believe I was a lot better about drinking a ton of water for the rest of the trip. I think I actually might be an honorary fish now.
– More deli food and tourist attractions – the gum wall, climbing on animal sculptures, tasting more beer.
– We then went to the space needle for Groupon’s Bite of Seattle and ate many bites and took super touristy pictures in front of the Space Needle. No regrets.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-6

– Someway, somehow, I was able to get us a very last-minute reservation at Umi Sake House, where some of us (especially me) were introduced to the world of sake and re-introduced to what fresh-out-of-the-ocean sushi taste like. AMAZING. This restaurant was awesome.

Day 3 (Sunday) – Oh, Canada!

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-7

– Our last day in Seattle got off to an early (and educational) start with Chihuly Garden & Glass museum (and EMP museum). I saw a few of the glass pieces from the outside the day before and knew immediately that I’d spend hours there if I had a chance.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-8

– For late lunch, we went back into Bite of Seattle, and I got my even t-shirt screenprinted on the spot because that’s AWESOME.
– We then trekked up to Canada and took sunroof selfies while we waited in line for two hours to cross the border.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-9

– We checked in to our hotel, Executive Hotel Vintage Park, and they started off strong by misreading our reservation. It went downhill from there. I’ll save you the grief and just tell you to never, ever stay at that place. It was weird.
– We were starving, so we walked a few blocks and wandered into Johnnie Fox’s Irish Snog it was on our itinerary and we didn’t even know it! Our waitress was awesome and the food was just okay, but it was our first night in a new country so we had a little adjusting to do anyways. ;)
– I couldn’t stop giggling because Canada SO different than the US but we just drove right in. The accents, the money, the metric system… I had serious culture shock, and apparently my super-mature way of handling that now is to giggle uncontrollably about everything. Thankfully, almost everyone we talked to there was incredibly nice and didn’t mind (and seemed to even enjoy) my excitement over the most mundane of things. Tim Hortons on the corner? OH MY GAAAASH! I may have caused a scene once or four times. Maybe.

Day 4 (Monday) – Tasting ALL the Beers

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-10

– In the morning, Granville Island with Jake was on the schedule while others went to Stanley Park – there were so many awesome shops and such a great feel to the island. Of course it was touristy, but you have to find your little pockets of hometown goodness and then soak them up like a sponge. I loved it.
Tony’s Fish & Oyster Cafe for lunch was AHHMAZING. It officially made me addicted to all West Coast seafood, and their clam chowder was out of this world.
– Aquabus. It’s a rainbow-colored ferry that takes you places. Every city needs one of these, stat.
– We all met up at Granville Island Brewing, went back to the hotel to have a beer and relax on the roof and then went wandering around Yaletown with the best to-go gyro I’ve ever had.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-11

Yaletown Brewing – biggest sampler flights ever and Salmon chowder, which was amazing. I can’t say I’d recommend the those two things at the same time, though. Chowder + beer isn’t exactly a match made in heaven. Ha.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-12

Day 5  (Tuesday) – Britta Can Golf?

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-13

– My first time at Tim Hortons – I was stupidly excited and annoyed/amused at least 100 canadian locals with my giggles of joy and “ooooh”s and “ahhhhh”s.
– Stanley Park for a drive around and to go to a Pitch & Putt golf course. Real golfers would probably be phsyically sick at my swing, but I suprised myself immensly – I had SO much fun and could hit the ball straight almost every time. It was awesome. Kenny also got his first hole-in-one ever and bought the first round of beers at lunch.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-14

The Fish House for lunch – the most amazing tuna sandwich ever, and poutine redeemed itself tenfold by being one of the most delicious things I’ve every tasted. I get it now.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-15

– Drove back into the US and were so happy to be in a country where we knew what was legal and not legal again. Ha!
– Rallied at Porky’s Public Eatery in Longview, WA for some delicious burgers and then went up the mountain to Kenny’s house. He lives on a mountain!

Day 6 (Wednesday) – Astoria & The Ocean

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-17

– We drove into Orgeon for the first time ever – and every second of the drive was breathtaking.
– Walked around Astoria, having hole-in-the-wall BBQ (Rollin’ Thunder BBQ), taking the trolley (highly recommend this! It was the best two dollars I spent all day) and sampling as many beers as possible at Rogue Brewing.
– Got caught in a downpour for the first time in the NW and took it with grace – giggling, yelling and squealing all the way to shelter. Ha!

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-16

– Drove down to Seaside to see the beach and dip our feet into the ocean. Everything about the beach was breathtaking.
– Dinner at Hop-N-Grape in Longview. Their Mac ‘n Cheese may have ruined me for all other mac ‘n cheeses.

Day 7 (Thursday) – Portland. Much Wow.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-18

– Drove down to get a lot of touristy stuff out of the way.
– Shopping in Nob hill; I picked up some Portland makeup and the boys bought a ton of clothes from a thrift store named Thrift Store.
Lela’s Bistro for lunch. Amazing pho – one of my favorite things!
– Pearl City for Powell’s Book Store and Voodoo Doughnuts. Both were even better than everyone told me they would be.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-19

– Drove all the way up to the Johnston Ridge Observatory. The views were unbelievable on our way up, but we ended up in a cloud and didn’t get to see St. Helens even though it was literally right in front of us. Who cares, though? We’ll just have to go back again, and times with friends are the best, even when they don’t go as planned.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-20

– Ate an unbelievable taco shop in Kenny’s sleepy town. Fish tacos forever, baby.

Day 8 (Friday) – Tandem Bikes are the BEST

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-21

– Wore my exercise gear (and a helmet!) and rocked it out on a tandem bike with Jordan (the selfie king). The six of us rode aronnd the city to five different stops – Hair of the Dog Brewery, Cascade Brewing (best sours EVER), Robo Taco (the bean and rice burrito ruined me for all other burritos), Green Dragon and Belmont Station. It was a full-on terrifying, exhilarating, wonderful and amazing experience. Now I want to tandem bike everywhere.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-22

– We all drank so much water that we had to stop at gas stations to use the restroom twice on the hour drive home.
– Dinner at Sora Sushi. I will never tire of fresh, west coast sushi. Om nom nom forever.

Day 9 (Saturday) – Oregon Brew Fest 2014

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-23

– Ended up booking a hotel right on the waterfront (Marriott Downtown Waterfront) just a couple blocks from the festival. It was a gut decision, and it worked out SO well.
– Amazing made-to-order sandwiches from East Side Delicatessen. That was the best sub I’ve had in years.
– We spent several hours (and tokens) at Oregon Brew Fest. The beer scene in Portland is SO mature. I thought Minnesota was unbelievable, but we’re just learning to crawl compared to these guys who are at least in their teenage years. The beer scene is pretty much the cutest guy in highschool with a really rad car.
Women Enjoying Beer is a thing. YES. I want to wear my new shirt every day forever.
– I got excited when we went back to the hotel room to change and get ready for dinner and almost knocked myself out on an ornate headboard. The back of my head still hurts, but good thing my friends are functional while drinking and had a bag of ice on my head within a minute. They kind of rock.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-24

The Picnic House for dinner may have been the best meal of the trip. There were so many good meals that it’s hard to choose a favorite one, but our waitress here (Emily) was so awesome that it made the amazing food even better. Plus, they give you your check in a BOOK. A real book! I love that idea forever.

Day 10 (Sunday) – Britta Makes it to Breakfast and We Fly Back to MSP

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-25

– For the first time of the entire trip, I was the first one awake and ready to go to breakfast, so Jordan, Tom and I went on an expedition to Brunch Box, and it was a whole new kind of build-your-own-amazing-freaking-breakfast-sandwich (and burger) place. SO GOOD.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-26

– We packed up and headed out to see a few more parts of PDX – first, back to Powell’s to buy some more awesome books and then to NE Portland to meander and enjoy our last few hours together as a group.
– We grabbed coffee and more deliciousness at North Light, exhausted but content with our trip.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-27

– By the time we got to the airport, we were all thoroughly ready to head back east if only for our own beds.
– But, of course, we had to stop for a couple more beers to taste at Rogue at the airport. It would’ve just felt wrong if we didn’t. Ha!
– I made it home to my kitty and own bed and proceeded to sleep for about 14 hours.

07-31-14 FriendFestNW by Britta Swiderski-28

All in All, Everything was Amazing

Sure, we had the struggles that come with being with people for 10 days straight without much of a respite. Plans change, sometimes people haven’t had enough coffee yet and sometimes you accidentally book two nonrefundable rooms at the same time and have to beg the hotel to give you a refund for one of the rooms. It’s all of these things, though, that make each and every moment of the trip amazing and special. What started out as a simple trip to see Kenny became so very much more. It became a way to fill up my entire soul with happiness and adventure.

Thanks so much for stopping by today to go on our big adventure with me. I’ve finally made it through all of the photos from the trip and narrowed it down to the 768 best ones (haha – there were a lot to choose from!). I can’t wait to share my process for organizing big trips and scrapbooking them accordingly with you. I’m super lucky to have a group of tech-savvy friends who all took pictures and wanted to share them with the group. Thanks to Dan, Jake, Jordan and Kenny for contributing photos to this post! You guys are the best.

See you soon with more fun things. Oh, and I hope you’re free Sunday, August 6th at 2 pm Central (Chicago) time, because this is happening:

07-31-14 Garage Sale Preview

See you right here on brittaswiderski.com on Sunday! I’ll have over 100 products for sale that I’ve bought over the past few years but now need new homes. It’s time to make room for more! ;) All of the products range from like-new to well-loved condition, and there will be a picture of each item so you can see exactly what it looks like before you commit to buying the item. I’ll have a blog post up when the sale goes live, and the sale will take place on a page on my blog that will have very clear instructions on how to participate. I look forward to seeing you there!

Thanks again for stopping by today. You’re amazing.




Filed under Life and Health, Miscellaneous

Life Update: Where I’ve Been and Where I’m Going

I make a concerted effort to never apologize for not writing a post. Sometimes life gets in the way, and that’s okay. Sometimes life throws you a curveball… or ten. Sometimes you run out of words to say and need to spend your energy on other life things. That’s all okay.

I’ve missed my blog a lot. This is a happy place full of inspiration, creativity and love. It’s also a way for me to relax and enjoy a sense of community with other people that love paper and ink. My blog isn’t my job; it’s a passion that I spend a lot of time on. I tried to make a consistent income off my blog and lost my inspiration almost immediately. That’s why my website sometimes takes a backseat to things like my job search and most definitely takes priority over making memories with the people I love.

I’ve grown up a lot over the past years. I’ve made a lot of mistakes. I’ve made some pretty things. I’ve, most importantly, come to know some of the most beautiful people and have the privilege of calling them my friends. And the thing is… I constantly get to make more friends and support this community by building others up and receiving amazing support from them.

I have plans – good plans – to post on here regularly and get back into my craft room once again. I don’t know what’s going to happen, because I now understand just how unpredictable life can be, but I can say that not blogging is like missing part of my heart. I miss it. I want to grow this website and inspire more people to start crafting.

Why am I telling you all this? I don’t have a short answer for that. I like being honest, and this is me sharing how I feel about my blog and this community. There are also a few things that have been happening in my life that have caused me to grow up a lot in the past couple months. These things are so big and so life-changing that I can’t not share them with you. I’ve put off writing this post because I didn’t want to jump back in and pretend that everything is fine and dandy, because it’s not. Life is hard, and this month has been the hardest month of my entire life to date. I will learn and grow from this, but you have to experience the deepest sorrows in life in order to experience the height of love and happiness. So, without further ado, here is where I’ve been and where I hope I’m going.

1. I Quit My Job

I worked in retail at Blick, an art store, to make ends meet between freelance design and while I figured out what my next step in my professional career would be. I needed the money, but the stress from working a retail job and being overscheduled resulted in a very, very unhappy Britta. It was time for me to officially start finding my way into the professional world. I had a portfolio, I had convictions and I needed a job; I began the job search.

A canvas I made for a call to art at Blick. All the color comes from gelatos - I'll have a tutorial for this someday soon!

A canvas I made for a call to art at Blick. All the color comes from gelatos – I’ll have a tutorial for this someday soon!

I filled out job applications, I freelanced for a big company in the area for a couple weeks and I did a couple of odd jobs. I had to find a direction to go in. What do I want to DO with my life? So I met with my career counselor. After meeting with her for the first time, she came up with the same conclusion that I had before the meeting – Nonprofits would be a good place for me. Helping other people makes me happy. I have such a diverse set of skills, awesome varied background experience and the love for learning – all of these things make me endlessly excited to move forward with my life and my career. I have a direction! I’m now in the process of getting in touch with my contacts at a few favorite organizations, so that’s going pretty well. I’m so happy and so blessed to have direction and feel drawn to work in a capacity that allows me to directly make the world a better place. I might be an idealist, but I don’t think that’s such a bad thing.

2. I Lost My Grandmother

Truth be told, I had never had anyone I was really close with pass away before. My grandma, I called her Mormor (mother’s mother in Swedish), was one of the driving forces in my life from the very beginning. She is a huge part of who I am today, and I still miss her every day. She was sick for a very, very long time. She had an advanced form of Parkinson’s that made life very hard for her. She was in a nursing home for about six months before she had a stroke and was moved into a hospice. We knew she didn’t have very long after that, so that gave us time to say goodbye. That didn’t make her dying any easier. She survived for about a week and a half after the stroke, and then she was gone. No longer in pain, no longer giving nurses hell, no longer physically here.

A little something I made with what I had on my desk right after I found out my grandma had passed away. The song "Hear You Me" by Jimmy Eat World was comforting to me at the time.

A little something I made with what I had on my desk right after I found out my grandma had passed away. The song “Hear You Me” by Jimmy Eat World was comforting to me at the time.

I cried for days. Her funeral was a few weeks after she passed away, so I had time to grieve and process what was happening. I gave her eulogy at her funeral, and I know I did her proud. I was daily vlogging during this time, so you can even see me reading it to my brothers the night before the funeral. That weekend in central Illinois was hell, but it was worth it to say goodbye to her and to be with my family.

Here’s the video with the eulogy:

Here’s the video the day of the funeral. It was a good day. There were so many pictures and memories to share with one another, and this video captures some of them in a way that makes me so grateful for modern technology:

I miss you, Mormor. I’ll always hold you in my heart and know that you’re forever watching over me.

3. One of My Best Friends Committed Suicide

One of my best friends, Tim Patterson, took his own life a few weeks ago. It happened on June 5th, and the 6th was the worst day of my life. Tim was one of the nicest, most loving people I have ever met. He would get a paycheck from work and literally ask us what to spend it on because he didn’t know what to do with extra money; he had all the things he wanted. So he saved his money and bought us perfect presents with it. For Christmas last year, he gave Jake a first-press original Star Wars sound track in perfect condition. He would text me about it and how hard it was to find; I can’t even imagine what he spent on it, but it was all about giving his friend something that he knew would make him happy. Tim gave the best gifts, he gave the best hugs and he was always up for any adventure. I miss him every single day.

At the outdoor hockey game this year & celebrating Tim's birthday. From left to right: Timmy, me, Jake and Dan.

At the outdoor hockey game this year & celebrating Tim’s birthday. From left to right: Timmy, me, Jake and Dan.

If you know me or have been reading my blog for a while, you know that I am a huge advocate about extinguishing the stigma around mental illness. I have severe, clinically diagnosed depression and anxiety, and I want EVERYONE to know that people who struggle with this need support. People who have stupid chemical imbalances in their brain (that’s all depression and anxiety are, really) can be wonderful, productive members of society. No one should ever be afraid to ask for help or see a therapist. My psychiatrist and psychologist are two of the biggest reasons I can be who I am today. They give me the battle plan so I can fight those terrible thoughts racing through my head.

Along with this advocacy comes a sense of responsibility – one that propels me to tell everyone who will listen that suicide doesn’t stop things from getting worse, it eliminates the possibility of them getting better. [For more information on the Semicolon project, go here.] Anyone can become depressed or suicidal. It doesn’t have to be hereditary or because something bad happened (although it definitely can be), sometimes we just need to reach out for help. Click here for the National Suicide Lifeline. It’s always there in case you or a loved one might need it.

Friends are the family you get to choose, and I’m am blessed with about 15 of the most genuine, warm-hearted, beautiful family members ever to exist right here in Minneapolis. Some have moved away, some work funny hours or have a lot of commitments, but we are a family. Tim IS part of my family – one of my honorary brothers. Tim never even talked about his real family. I didn’t even know he had a sister and a brother until I read his obituary. He never wanted to talk about his past, so I didn’t ask him. We made our own memories to cover up the sad ones from his past. We knew he was hurting – he had stomach pain issues and even had his gallbladder removed in December. I gave him the phone number of my therapist and he said he would call her. We didn’t know how bad he was hurting, though. I got to read his note – an open letter that he left before he ended his life – and it was clear that his stomach pain was so blinding that he couldn’t imagine ever having a normal life again. He withdrew from us as friends, even though we kept reeling him back in. He said in the letter that he knew that we loved him so much and that he loved us so much. Maybe that’s the part that sucks the most… that he knew he wasn’t alone but that we might not have been able to save him if we tried even harder.

But we can’t go back in time and change things. All we can do is keep one foot in front of the other and try to learn, grow and love more. My friend family is and was my rock during the toughest of times. I don’t think I was alone for the first seven days. Between someone visiting me at the apartment, having friends sleep on our couch, making dinner together or just talking on the phone, we grieved together. Sometimes we talked about Tim. Sometimes we talked about everything else or about how funny life is. Sometimes we just cried. Now and forever, I will always love my friend family.

On the day of Timmy’s funeral, we all had a fish fry at my friend Jeremy’s house. Those that could make it into town came, and everyone brought food and beer to share. We spent about 20 hours together that day – from the funeral in the morning to the wee hours of the morning when I was a designated driver for a few people that wanted to stay at our apartment. Tim would’ve really loved that party. And I know he was there. I feel him with me all the time. Everything reminds me of him – Target, Batman, Starwars, Game of Thrones, the color purple and even cheese – and nothing will ever be the same.

My Friend Family the day of the fish fry. A few people couldn't make it or didn't make it in time for the picture, but we were all together in spirit. Left to right: Back - Hannah, Jake, Darren, (Erik) Platt, me, Katelyn, Kenny, John, Jordan, Megan, Lydia, (Jeremy) Herder - front - Joe, Dan

My Friend Family the day of the fish fry. A few people couldn’t make it or didn’t make it in time for the picture, but we were all together in spirit. Left to right: Back – Hannah, Jake, Darren, (Erik) Platt, me, Katelyn, Kenny, John, Jordan, Megan, Lydia, (Jeremy) Herder – Front – Joe, Dan

It’s gotten easier to deal with over time, just like they say. I am blessed with a support network even outside of my Minneapolis friends that sprung into action the moment I needed them. Phone calls, texts, tweets and everything else from people who didn’t even know Tim. They prayed for me, they talked to me and they shared with me how they deal with grief. Every bit of it helped. And Jake. He’s amazing. He was there for me and I was there for him, and we mourned together. We still mourn together. We keep building each other up even though we hurt inside. I am so thankful for our relationship.

Tim, I miss you. I love you. We all love you. I hope you’re somewhere starting the best collection of beer afterlife has to offer. We’re sure going to need it with all the catching up we’ll have to do when we meet again.

4. Life Keeps Moving and Good Things Still Happen

Here’s the part where it gets better. Well, you know, comparatively. Because I’ve been dealing with anxiety and depression actively since I was 18, I was able to be there for my loved ones who had never experienced depression before. I clicked into helping mode, and it helped me cope immensely. This only further cements my convictions that working with charities and nonprofits is the right direction for me. I want to help people, and helping people makes me a better person. I thrive while helping people, and all at the same time I’m able to see those lessons and put them into practice in my life.

Leia has been absolutely wonderful. She likes to sit out on the porch with me and Jake on this harness + bungee leash system. It's awesome, and so is Leia.

Leia has been absolutely wonderful. She likes to sit out on the porch with me and Jake on this harness + bungee leash system. It’s awesome, and so is Leia.

My heart still aches, but the ache is a little easier to deal with day by day. Good things are happening. I’m planning a trip with a few of my friends out to explore the Pacific Northwest. I’ve had a couple of interviews. Every day is now a non-zero day. I’m reading a lot of books. I’m exercising. I’m eating well. Life has a funny way of being so terrible and so beautiful at the same time.

And I have this blog. I have my crafty friends and inspiration and love that this community provides. I’m planning to really make this a part of my life again, because I realize that I need it. I need that creative release and that time in my craft room. I need to let my hands do the talking through art and through posting. I need to share my life with you, because if I can make a difference in just one person’s life for the better, I’m happy.

I love you, and thank you for being here. And if you made it all the way through this post, I’m sending you a huge, virtual hug because it means so much to me that you read it. I know this post was definitely not fun, but this is all part of me now and I want you to know me. I want you to know that I’m an advocate and that I’m writing out a new battle plan for each day. We’re in this together. Humans are weird like that. ;)



Filed under Life and Health