About Dear Bex

This is my place to speak to my daughter. She won't remember these early days in her life, and I want to make sure that I do! Plus, there's just so much I want to say to her and be sure she knows.

June 30, 2013

Our Climb from the Darkness

Dear Bex,

Last weekend, we did our Climb from the Darkness.  At 6 PM  on Friday, June 21, the longest day of the year, you, The Daddy and I met up with Mimi, PopPop, Drew and Gabi and walked along the Hoboken waterfront.  You walked part of the way, ran part of the way, I pushed you in your stroller part of the way and you ate pretty much the whole way! We took tons of pictures, talked, looked at the amazing views of the NYC skyline and enjoyed the perfect summer evening weather. When we got back up to Maxwell Place Park we met up with Grandma and Grumpa and Aunt Judy for a picnic afterwards, during which you ate, ran, played on the playground, danced and were generally an overtired, hilarious entertainer!


It was an incredible night.  We raised more than $3,500 for Postpartum Progress, the reason that we walked.  I raised so much awareness even just among people I know about what I had been through. And I got to take time that night to think about how far I'd come.  I got to spend time with the people who helped me when I needed it most, and to celebrate our family and the hundreds of other women that were walking for that same reason.

I didn't make any kind of speech that night, and if I had would have surely found myself with tears streaming down my face.  But what I would have tried to say would have been:
Thank you. Thank you for coming to support me, our family, and Postpartum Progress.  Thank you for being there for us just over two years ago when we didn't know which way was up, and for being there to help us up every day since.  This has been a hell of a two-and-a-half years, and we have needed each and every one of you to help keep us going.  
The experience that I went through has profoundly changed me - motherhood, yes, has profoundly changed me - but the PPD in particular has made me hypersensitive to every pregnant woman that I see, every friend that tells me they are expecting.  I live just about all of my life as an open book and always have, and this experience is no different.  I hope that by talking about what I went through, I help at least one person not feel ashamed or embarrassed or like they have to hide their struggles. Today marks the first time that women all over are shining a light on PPD together, and I hope that this is the first of many times I get to use my experience for good.
So thank you all for everything - the meals, the baby sitting, the phone calls... thank you to Evan, for being the most amazing father, husband and partner from day 1.  You have blown me away and I don't know where I'd be without you.  And thank you to Bex, who made me the mother I am today.  The Warrior Mother that I am today.  It was you that profoundly changed me for the better, and you that keeps changing me every single day.  I love you so much!
 I was proud, happy and overwhelmed with gratitude towards everyone that contributed money, time, and kind words to me.  I loved every second of planning for and executing this night - and can not wait to make next year even bigger and better.  What a night - and the symbolism of it - a virtual army of Warrior Moms all spending the brightest day of the year focusing on the journey that motherhood has taken them on - just made it that much more amazing.

I love you, baby girl.

Love always,

June 6, 2013

Climbing Out of the Darkness

Dear Bex,

Oh my goodness, Baby Girl, mama's been on a mission!  We have been kicking some booty over here raising money for Postpartum Progress' Climb Out of the Darkness fundraiser.  When I first read about it, I thought, "Wow, what a great idea.  That would be cool."  Then I opened my next email and went on with my day.  But I couldn't stop thinking about what I could do to participate - so I researched hikes in our area, but there are none close enough to where we live to make it easy for people to join us.  So I put it out of my mind. But it just kept creeping back in, and I knew I had to join up!  What a great way to raise money for this amazing cause, and to DO SOMETHING after what I went through during The Dark Days that I so often reference here.  So, I set up a fundraising page and decided to do less of a climb and more of a walk right in Hoboken.  Easy, right down and then back up the waterfront, a walk you and I have done together countless times.  We will have a picnic dinner on the pier with everyone right after, and in my mind it's a perfect Summer evening with friends, family, babies and even dogs running all around us as we celebrate how far you and I have come in the exactly two years and five months since you were born.

Of course, something will go wrong - it may rain, or there won't be room for us all in the park (doubtful, but you never know), or FreshDirect's truck will break down and the picnic won't make it to us... but I can't control any of that, so I'm focused on what I can control - getting my message and Postpartum Progress' message out there, and asking friends and family to support their amazing cause.

I first sent out a note and a Facebook status update on Tuesday.  Daddy put it on Facebook too, because he is an awesome Daddy.  I said I'd raise $500, and we surpassed that pretty quickly.  Then I said $1,000, and we passed that too.  I upped it to $2,000 on Wednesday, and Baby Girl, we're at $2035 as of noon on Thursday.  That is unbelievable.  The goal of the entire fundraiser is $25,000, and we're almost 10% of that already! So that is my new goal - $2500 - fingers crossed that we get there.

So thank you thank you thank you to all of our donors (I will update this as more come in!):

The Feuerring Foundation
Evan and Rebecca (The Stinkface) Neadel (that's you!)
Grandma and Grumpa Neadel
Lauren, Jason, Amanda and Ryan Baker
Grandma Thel
Aunt Judy
Uncle Bob and Aunt June
Jen and Jason Adel
The Adler Family
Denae Bard
Lauren and Chad Blank
Meredith Campbell
Rachel Cohen and Yael Ralston
Bill & Marion Cullen
Gail and Jerry Ellstein
Valerie Fernandez
Mr. and Mrs. Ed Filusch
Joan and Barry Galkin
Laura and Dave Goldstein
Anne Green
Gabi and Drew Greenspan
Katy and Cuyler Hendricks

Tracy, Lilly and Jon Jacobs
Heather, Lil and Charlie Katz
Ellen and Ralph Katz
Lauren, Sean and Colin Kennedy
Dave, Ruth, Dylan and #2 Kim
Carrie and Adam Kipnis
Barry Kraver
Matt and Erica Lakind
Maria Martinez
Leslie, Marc, Sydney and Hayden Meunier
Erica, Dave and Avery Peltz
Marc Penziner
Emily Pontelandolfo
Kathleen Reynolds
Charlie Ricciardelli
The Salinas Family
Rachael Lerner-Schachter and Jesse Schachter
Aly, Jordan and Lexie Schwartz
Bette and Alan Schwartz
Jeff Shooman
The Silberman Family
Dorothy Sonnenburg
Leslie Stahl
Meredith Topalanchik
Abby and Elliot Trexler
Jordyn, Dan and Brooks Vinish
Emily Weiner
Camille Priselac and Brendan Whelan
Lea Woods

And thank you to you too, Bex, because without you being born, I wouldn't have gone through what I did - and wouldn't have found a cause I am so passionate about.  One that I can feel so intensely down to my core, and one that I know will fuel who I am for the rest of my life.  

Love always,