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It rained last night, for the first time in far too long, and with it came a new sense of clarity. Both literally and figuratively. New York City requires a good washing from nature on a regular basis otherwise things start to look bleak; more dirty and depressing than usual.

This morning I was driving home from the gym when the grey clouds parted revealing streaks of periwinkle blue skies. The sun illuminated those grey clouds and suddenly they glowed golden, the leaves on the trees showed extra green, fresh from their washing. The roads looked cleaner and car windows glimmered – an S.O.S. of hope over the Henry Hudson Parkway.

It was an incredible few moments to witness and I soaked in every last bit. If I were not driving I would have laid down and allowed it wash over me, like a baptism by nature. Instead I slowed the car and let the rest of the world speed by so I could receive this message.

Everything is ok. Everything is renewed.

I’ve not been in a good place for a very long time. Anxiety has crept back into my life, but unlike times past, it has taken ahold and shook me to the core. I can’t sleep. I can’t eat. I am doing good to just get out of the bed, let alone leave the house. I’m plagued by intrusive thoughts about my own mortality, the death of my family, horrific acts of terrorism, and more. I have been too scared to speak up for fear of losing those I hold closest.

Two weeks ago, in moment of desperation, I walked into a family medicine clinic and asked to see the doctor on-call. She asked a few general questions, wrote a prescription for Prozac and instructed me to find a therapist. I started the meds and then began the hunt for someone to help – a task that ended up far more challenging than one would expect. Someone on the brink should not have to call 20 or more therapists before one will answer the phone or call them back. Nothing about that is acceptable when your job is to care for the mental health of others.

Gradually the medication is building up in my body and I see it bringing temporary relief. Breathing deeply no longer yields that horrifying sucking feeling in my chest. I can sleep a bit better. I can get myself out of bed and to the gym. Yesterday I even met up with a girlfriend and then ran errands with Sabine. We had such a wonderful day together chatting and letting our kids play and Sabine was such a delight to shop with later. While Sabine ate her black beans at our Mother/Daughter lunch I thought how for the first time in a long, long while I felt open and receptive, not closed and alone.

And then my phone chirped saying I had an email saying that I received two tickets to see Pope Francis as he makes his way through Central Park later this month. My heart swelled as the significance of this timing sank in.

And then it rained that sweet, sweet cleansing rain. And then the golden light this morning. And just now a therapist finally answered her phone and is going to help. And during all of this, I have been able to be present and open to the signs. I am again able to feel emotion and cry real tears. I am able to see hope, and maybe a tiny glimmer of light at the end of this dark tunnel.



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  1. September 11, 2015

    HUGS friend. Hope you are able to find a therapist and some relief very soon.

  2. September 11, 2015

    Beautiful post Belle. You are brave for sharing and strong for seeking help. Huge hugs 🙂

  3. Karaleen #
    September 11, 2015

    I’m so sorry to hear you have been struggling. I have checked in on your page a couple times since you posted about the basil cell because I was feeling like that was a trigger of sorts and I really just wanted to hear that they did the removal and all is well. I guess my senses from across the country were on high alert. I surely hope the meds help. They are there for a reason and it does sound like you are finding your way again. Don’t stop asking for help when you need it. I am so glad you walked into that clinic….that takes a lot of courage. Enjoy the sun, the washing rain and that little love bug of yours. So happy to see you back in this space. Know that you are safe here.


    • September 11, 2015

      Sadly, the basal cell is still on my nose. I had to have another spot tested and it, thank God, was negative. I’m now waiting on my surgery date. Things take forever here. Thank you for your kind thoughts. I felt them ❤

      • Karaleen #
        September 11, 2015

        Damn basil cells…I am battling them myself. Just had my 2nd patch removed from my shoulder….but the pathology came back saying the margins were too close….so I go back again in October to do it all again. I will cheer you on and you cheer me on. I guess we have to enjoy our sunshine from behind 50spf and wide brim hats. uhg!

  4. September 11, 2015

    I’m so sorry things have been so bad lately and I’m glad you are starting to find some relief! I hope things continue to get better!

  5. jaclyn #
    September 11, 2015

    I had postpartum anxiety after my first son and couldn’t sleep at all after he was born. When I was hesitant about taking drugs, a very kind therapist told me, “You have to sleep. I remember from residency how important it is to sleep.” I took 1 xanax each night to sleep for awhile and was able to wean myself off the drug before I got pregnant again. It is very stressful raising children, and you need to do whatever helps you keep your strength. There are a lot of us out here rooting for you, and hoping all goes well!

  6. September 11, 2015

    I have been thinking about you since your last post and hoping that you were ok. Seeing a therapist is good. I’ve started hypnotherapy and I can’t recommend it enough. It has really really helped me cope with things.

  7. September 11, 2015

    So beautifully and honestly written. Many hugs to you. I hope things get better and you feel better soon. xo

  8. September 11, 2015

    Love this. So happy you’re feeling better and see some hope on the horizon. Call if you ever need me. Love you!

  9. September 12, 2015


  10. September 12, 2015

    Thinking of you hugs from Spain

  11. pk #
    September 12, 2015

    Oh Belle. Bless you. So many of us have been just there, in that painful spot. It’s so lonely, and so hard. Your strength in reaching out and seeking the help you need is inspirational. I hope fervently that you find a therapist who can offer you the guidance and wisdom you need right now. May you be safe, loved, and at peace, as you continue to grow into this new sense of clarity.

  12. Saskia #
    September 14, 2015

    So glad to hear from you. Holding you in my thoughts and prayers.

  13. 35life #
    September 15, 2015

    So beautifully and bravely written. Thinking of you.

  14. September 16, 2015

    Sending a big hug. So sorry you have been feeling so crippled by sadness. I’m so glad you reached out for help.

  15. September 16, 2015

    Thank you for the honesty. I too have struggled with anxiety but also appreciate those moments where everything feels alright again, or at least full of hope for joy in the future. Best wishes for continued renewal and cleansing sunshine filled moments.

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