2015, which I've morbidly coined "the year of death," will be a year my husband Eric and I will always remember. At the beginning of the year, we were elated to discover that I was pregnant with what we hoped would be our first child. That joy and anticipation all came crashing down around me when I had my first miscarriage. The year got heavier when my mother-in-law lost her battle with cancer and my brother-in-law died unexpectedly. We ended the year with my third and most crushing miscarriage. We heard a heartbeat at 8 weeks and three weeks later, the heartbeat was gone. My heart was broken.
I mourned the loss of my mother-in-law, re-lived the death of my own mom, and grappled with the uncertainty of becoming a mom myself. In the midst of my grief, I had to find ways to bring myself peace and I used every strategy I had in my emotional tool kit. I created this deck to share the ones that really got me through.
As 2016 began I was haggard, but I also felt more empowered and resilient than ever. I had uncovered a new level of inner strength. Friends tend to say things to me like, "You're so good at staying positive." The truth is I'm not inherently good at it - I practice this state of mind every day.
For awhile, I had a sticky note on my laptop, "Suffering is optional." It reminded me that I may not have control over the loss and challenges that I experience, but I certainly do have control over how I react to them. I decided that I want to be more in control of my thoughts and feelings so I use the strategies in this deck of cards all the time. I hope they bring you as much confidence, encouragement, and peace of mind as they bring to me.
All the artwork you see on our products, on the Monday Morning Motivation (you really want to be getting that in your inbox each week...trust me) and in my Instagram feed (you want to follow that too - @personalpeptalk) is hand drawn with love by me, Stacy Davison. Unless, of course, I'm sharing the art of someone I love and admire. Then, you'd see credit where credit is due.
Most of the photographs on this site, unless credited otherwise, were taken by Andrew Ochoa.
The black and white photos above of me and our little family were taken by Andrea Scher.