Why This Mental Health Writer Wrote a Children’s Book
This could have gone poorly…
Let me just say, I am so glad everyone is excited about my new children’s book.
Most people who have known me for awhile know that I can never stick to just one thing. Niching down is constricting.
Still, I’m sure some people who don’t know me as well are probably wondering why the heck a mental health writer is publishing some random storybook about a baby elephant.
Allow me to explain.
I’ve focused so much on depression and anxiety, heck, I even wrote a poetry collection serializing my lowest year.
When I started this blog, I led with the idea that I wanted to open a conversation around mental health and around religion and the ties between the two.
I ended up writing a blog post here, an article there, jumping on and off of social media, at least delivering something every month, but not nearly to the degree I had planned. (You should see the stacks of post-it notes I have lying around.)
And now I show up waving Maskcara makeup in one hand, and an out-of-the-blue kids book in the other.
Some of you have got to be wondering, “Kim, what are you doing?”
The struggle continues.
At the end of the day, I’m still just treading water. Mental illness is an internal battle that’s never really over.
When my baby girl was born, a whole world of innocence and light and wonder opened up to me. I wanted more of it. I wanted to spend my time and energy there.
So, I found things that are just fun: Kids books and makeup.
Things that are so unimportant, but can also be incredibly transformational.
The prescription for hopelessness is often service and connection, which is great, but it’s not going to do much if you still can’t face yourself in the mirror. Sometimes you have to help yourself first.
Your healing starts with you.
A large part of my healing journey lately has been incorporating more light into my life, and not taking on so much of the heavy. I’ve involved myself in things that excite me, things I feel naturally drawn to, and things that push me towards big and happy goals.
I know my life is privileged, and I understand that some things are unavoidable, but the way we choose to live our life is largely our own choice. We have power to make change.
So, what’s the book about?
Sitting down to write a story for my baby got my juices flowing. It was refreshing to get back to the basics of storytelling and plot, and thrilling to meet a new character in the recesses of my mind, to get to know her and join her on a journey of exploration and discovery.
I was able to consider what I want my child to know.
To me, one of the most important lessons I believe I can teach her is that she has loving parents who she can trust and depend on and who will show her the way when she is lost or confused or hurting.
It’s the lesson we all need, because we all have loving Parents in heaven, who we can trust and depend on and who will show us the way when we are lost or confused or hurting.
It’s been the single most important piece of knowledge in my life, and is what has kept me going through all of the trauma and pain I’ve experienced.
You may be thinking, “Whoa, isn’t that kind of deep for a fun children’s book?”
Every story has layers, and everything we share with our children is absorbed. The lesson isn’t overt, but it is there, and it needs to be.
I hope you’ll all stick around as I expand the subject matter of this blog and of my writing.
There are great things coming, I promise.