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Emily Kreiberg

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What a process this past two years has been.

I feel as if I’m being whittled away to my bare bones; to my essence.

Whittle after whittle after whittle-

I’m just not sure what will be left.

Take away my mother.

What do you get?

Take away my other mother.

What do you get?

Give me a new child, but strip me of my long-held sanity.

What do you get?

Give me lifesaving ECT treatment, but strip me of my memories and my quick wit.

What do you get?

Give me refrain from depression, but add lingering anxiety.

What do you get?

Give me medication to cure the anxiety, but add 15 pounds of rapid weight gain.

What do you get?

Strip me of my job upon my attempted return from maternity leave. Give me 5 months of looking for work.

Give me promising interviews but then more rejection.

What do you get?

I’m just not sure what the lesson is.

What I’m meant to be learning.

I have a beautiful life.

Beautiful things are happening all around me.

I am thankful for my sanity.

For my children and my husband and my home and my lot in life where I can have this many months to be jobless and searching.

I am thankful for a body that is healthy and alive and can run and jump and frolic with my children.


I applied for more jobs and I tried on bathing suits today.

Both of those used to be things that I approached with 100% confidence.

Both of those things are things I know my peers have struggled with in the past and I haven’t understood that.

And now I do.

I feel foreign in my own body.

I feel strange when I look at its curves and mottled skin and dimpled flesh.

I look at it from all angles and think ‘whose body is this?? Whose body am I looking at?’

I never once struggled with my body image. I mean maybe the typical puberty struggles, but never since then.

And now I live in a space where my body has greatly changed. It changed a bit after Sadie, and a bit after Lucy, but it has changed the most in the months since I started Olanzipine, a drug that I am using to help regulate my sleep and counter my morning anxiety. It has saved my sanity and also made me gain a lot of weight.

I want to give myself grace for looking different.

I want to be grateful for my sanity, and accept the fact that the cure for my sanity comes at a cost.

I want to give myself grace that the perfect job is just around the corner, and that rejection is part of the application process, but I also want to pump my fists at the sky and demand the universe to just give me some good news for once.

I was feeling all these thoughts and still walking around today with my head held high, a ready smile for the lady that smiled at me in the grocery store.

And maybe that’s the lesson here.

That I am resilient.

That I am strong; in both body and mind.

That good things will come to me. That maybe once all of my pride and confidence have been whittled away, it will make way for a new confidence.

Not one born of circumstance and privilege, but one born of trial by fire.

Maybe just around the corner, I will deeply appreciate my circumstances and everything that has led me to where I am today.

But for today- I hate fluorescent lighting. Swimsuits and the need for them. My wiggly body. My inability to get a job.

Tomorrow is a new day.



Please comment if anything I have said really spoke to you. I quit newspapers becuase they weren't interactive. PLeASE interact. Amen!
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