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Today.

Today I heard a tale of woe about a woman who confided to her online mom’s group about “intrusive thoughts” she had about her baby. Intrusive meaning uninvited. We all have uninvited thoughts.

This woman did what most of us don’t have the courage to do, she spoke up. However, a mandated reported had to alert the authorities and now CPS is going to make it’s way to her house.

I don’t have an opinion on that. Facts and laws are facts and laws.

Here’s where my opinion is lying…. her bravery. Her courageous and beautifully bold bravery where she spoke of dark thoughts openly and publicly. All she wanted was advice. She wanted to know she wasn’t alone.

You aren’t alone.

I might not have advice to give you, but I am inspired by you.

She doesn’t know me. I don’t know her. She will never read this. And that’s okay. The moral of this story, and so many like it, are you never know the impact you have on someone. You never know who is sitting at their kitchen table blogging about a stranger who she read about. It could be you.

So be great. Be bold. Be daring. Be truthful, painfully truthful. Smile. Laugh. Cry. Someone out there needs you to simply be you.


My daughters are my teachers.

So often I learn a life lesson from one of my children. Their take on the world, their innocence, and their fresh slate make their perceptions ones that I don’t have the ability to see. I know the cruelties of the world. I know the harshness of actions and mean people. I’m often bitter, judgmental, and prepared for the worst.

Because I’m 20+ years older than they are, I also think I have the answers.

Sometimes I am wrong.

Over a year ago I wrote a blog about my concerns regarding Savannah’s “friends”. The ones I’m referring to are friends she doesn’t know IRL <– (that’s In Real Life… yeah… I’m cool… I know the lingo)

Anyways, I couldn’t grasp the concept that she could feel connected to people she has never met. In my day (eek, did I really just say that?!) your friends were kids from your neighborhood, school, church, sports, and cousins. Sometimes even your cousins friends. You knew what each other looked like. You could pick one another out from a crowd. You knew their style of clothing, what their voice sounded like, and you hung out together in the same room.

Technology has changed that. Savannah meets more kids online than IRL. It’s easy to hop into a chat room type of place that is tailored for a passion. She can go online and meet kids who like Invader Zin within a couple minutes. IRL you’d have to actually dig this information out of another person. Technology has unfortunately also hindered this upcoming generation from these conversation skills. However, that’s a different rant for a different day. back on track we go!

This concept truly concerned me, mostly because I didn’t understand it. That idea is foreign to me. How in the world can you be friends with someone you don’t actually know.

Fast forward several months and now I ask you this. Does the word “know” (in this context) really equal “know in real life”? Or, is there something deeper here we could be missing?

Yesterday I attempted to gather my invite list that Jason asked me for in regards to my upcoming birthday. There are a couple people on that list that I have never met IRL. It dawned on me. Savannah was right. She knew at 10 something I didn’t learn until almost 35. Being in the same room doesn’t make you friends. A common ground does. An appreciation for the same humor. A shared interest. That’s what a connection is.

Thank you child of mine.

I’m beyond blessed to have children exploring this world in ways that are alien to me. They aren’t scared and they don’t do things based on my interest, experience, understandings, and values. They are their own individual personalities and they are out there making their way based upon their own gut, hopes, heart, and dreams. I’m even more thankful that I have my eyes open to the possibilities of all they have to teach me along the way. The journey is ours together and I couldn’t be more excited for it.


Fake vs. Polite

Hi blog followers… all 2 or 3 of you. I’ve missed you. I’ve missed blogging. it’s been far too long! 

I wanted to focus today’s blog on something near and dear to my heart… me. Hahaha, well, kind of.

Recently I was put into a conversation with a woman who does not like me and has no problem telling me so. It was harsh, hurtful, embarrassing, and devastating. She doesn’t like me because of my perky personality, which, i don’t think of myself as perky, but okay. Even she’s entitled to her opinion I suppose.

This event lead to other conversations, one in which I was told that my “continually upbeat personality can come across as fake”. Damn. That sucks. But I was appreciative of the honesty. 

Am I a happy person? Yes, I think so. I hope so. I’ve paid a lot of money in therapy bills to get to this point.

People, I’m not fake!!! I really am happy. I really am excited. I really do get giddy over stupid things. I’m not fake. Just because I save my dark hours for my alone time, doesn’t make me fake. It makes me closed off. It makes me guarded. Take it or leave it, I simply don’t want to share that part of me. I can’t imagine that makes me fake.

I have a friend that I have a problem with. Am I going to tell her? No. Are we going to discuss my issue? No. Because it’s MY issue, I don’t need to make it HER issue. I’ll get over it. Why bring it up? I’ll hurt her feelings. I could hurt our friendship. It’s not worth it to me. Instead, I’ll continue to love her endlessly, because I do, and I’ll keep my icky feelings to myself. I can’t imagine that makes me fake either. In fact, I think it only makes me polite. Maybe even respectful. Or, possibly delusional. 

Every ugly opinion in the world doesn’t have to be shared. Shocking, I know.

I don’t talk about a lot of things that upset me. I used to, and I got judged for my opinions. Sometimes my opinions hurt people I love and that hurts me. I’m a peacekeeper by nature and personality. I don’t like to stir the pot. That doesn’t make me fake either, that’s my actual personality. I am making the cognizant choice to keep certain opinions to myself. Not fake. Just me. 

Why am I almost 35 and this is still an issue? Why haven’t I reached a chapter in life where girls can just accept each other, love each other, and give up the name calling? Yes, even calling me “fake” is name calling and hurtful. 

My mom taught me “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all” and I still believe in that. 

However, if you directly ask my opinion on something I will tell you my thoughts. Disclaimer: You might not like my opinion.

It’s hard to raise 2 daughters in such a harsh world. People are mean. For no reason. It really gets under my skin. I’m raising my daughters to NOT be mean girls, but it isn’t easy. Mean girls are everywhere. They’re influential and often magnetic. I wish i could guarentee my kids will never test out the “mean girl” personality, but I can’t promise the world that. I can only hope that they remain level headed girls who care enough about the world they live in to try to make it a better place.

I could ramble about this topic all day and night…. but I have David Tutera’s CELEBrations to watch. Love me some trashy reality tv 🙂

The end.

 


Parenting = Confusion

Parenting is like an unhealthy relationship. Sometimes it’s the one thing that makes you think you are losing your mind. You question yourself at all times. You walk on eggshells. You continuously love harder and deeper then the other person. You change yourself. You adapt. You cry…. a lot. And then all of a sudden, you have a moment/day/hour/tiny second that is so incredibly touching, you forget about all the bad leading up to it. You are on cloud nine and whistling to yourself. Life is made of sunshine and rainbows! Then, before you know it, you are back to feeling like the worst person who ever lived.

Yet, you are reminded you are a parent and this isn’t an unhealthy relationship. This is it. There’s no walking away. Take it or, take it.

The roller coaster ride that is parenting is the most painful and joyful experience the world may ever know. You are constantly guessing and completely unprepared for what lies ahead. However, we find ourselves embarking upon this journey full steam ahead generation after generation.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my kids. More then I love life. More then I love giraffe’s, the color orange, and books. I think they are the most fascinating creatures to walk this Earth. I’m constantly in awe of them and I cannot get enough of their affection and laughter. What I don’t love is having a great evening with them only to be yelled at because I’m not good at helping with homework. I also don’t love all the cooking and cleaning. I’d do okay without being a chauffeur as well. What I don’t love most of all is giving into that anger inside of me and yelling back. Yeah, because a grown up yelling at a 9 year old who can’t do her homework is great. Nice. Way to go me.

I officially get the worst parent award right now.

I stay calm a lot. I swallow a lot more frustration then anyone around me is aware of. I get through the sisterly bickering and annoying each other. I don’t raise my voice with all the “why” questions. I don’t even snap back when my head gets bitten off each day by my teenager. WIth that said, I absolutely have zero/zilch/nada tolerance for that phase a child goes through where they “can’t” do their homework. They sigh, they stomp, they sigh more. Then, they ask for help they refuse to accept. If you are asking me for help and huffing and puffing because you “can’t” do it and you are going to fail… you probably will fail because I can’t talk someone off that ledge. I’m joining them instead.

That’s my weakness, my breaking point. I know it. I feel it coming and I know when I should be walking away from the situation (it’s about 2 seconds into the conversation, in case you were wondering). And unfortunately, I can’t avoid it. I must help with homework. That’s part of my job description.

All I can do instead is apologize to my beautiful princess for losing my patience, remind her I make mistakes too because I’m only human myself, hold myself accountable in hopes she learns to do that herself one day…. and email her teacher for homework assistance.


Hello rock, please meet hard spot.

I’m torn. So very torn.

So, like, I know this person… seriously, it’s not me. I know you thought that.

The person in question makes friends with people online. This is normal if you are into online gaming. It’s actually more normal then being friends with real life humans. I’ve talked to several gamers and ex-gamers about this. I’ve studied the topic. It’s normal. (yes, I’m saying it over and over continually trying to convince myself it’s normal)

This person truly enjoys these friendships and believes she… er…. he/she is creating actual friendships.

Fine, ok, it’s a she.

She laughs with these “friends” and shares stories with these “friends”. They communicate like actual friends. These are her “friends”.

She has never met them.

She never will.

Here’s where I’m torn.

1. What is these “friends” are really 50 year old creepy men just pretending to be a kid?

2. How can you honestly be friends if you have never met?

3. Why can’t she be friends this easy with real life people?

I don’t want to take this away from her (okay, I think we all know who the she is now). I want her to socialize in any way, shape, or form she feels comfortable with. I truly do. I’m happy she has found a place in this world where she feels she belongs. That’s every parents dream. Isolated kids who never feel as though they belong do not turn out well as adults.

But I do worry about my above numbered concerns.

I don’t know what’s best.

I’ve always said you’ll know you were a good/bad parent based upon how much counseling your kids need once they’re an adult. I can’t figure out if it’s best that I let her continue with these “friends” or take them away and hope she doesn’t resent me forever.

And that’s today’s rock and hard spot.


Rushed.

We exist in a world that is prepared for us to stay awhile, around 80 years in the United States. The oldest person on record is 122 years old.

Why is it then, we are in such a rush?

I walk slow, I just do. I don’t want to rush. It drives Jason crazy that I get up earlier then I need to. I simply want an easy morning, I don’t want to rush. There are very few times I can control not needing to rush, therefore, I don’t rush!

Kids are rushed to grow up. Not only by social media and peer pressure, but often times by their own families.

People rush to get married. I myself rushed to have children.

I know people who even rush through books. Books are supposed to be relaxing and enjoyable, it’s not a race! (ok, I do read the end first many times, but then I go back and read the book. I just hate the suspense!)

People rush to fall in love, then most of the time realize they fell in love with an idea, not a person. All because they were rushing in the first place. Then, they divorce and realize they are even more behind on their life goals.

Good things come to those who wait people! (yes, I’m guilty of rushing love in my past, thank goodness I’ve learned from those mistakes…. finally!)

People rush through career’s. Today I was discussing my career path at BSI and I was saying how a position I’d like would set me up in a good place in a few years and the other person said “Isn’t there a quicker way? Who thinks a few years out anymore?” Um… I do!

I have my whole life ahead of me. I don’t need to rush it.

People ask Jason and I when are we getting married. Thank God we are on the same page for that one. We aren’t rushing this. We laugh every single day. Literally. We long for each other. We’re only whole when we are together. We’re best friends. We’re partners. We’re happy. We don’t need to get married RIGHT NOW to make that happen. We’re already in an amazing place.

People are not only rushed, they are disconnected. Countless people (I used to be one of them) are on their phones when they should be engaged in conversation. But there’s this idea that you have to post on Facebook RIGHT AWAY. You have to text so-and-so back RIGHT AWAY. Heaven forbid we miss a beat. This is another form of rushing. People… the text will still be there. The picture to edit will wait for you. Twitter isn’t going anywhere (although I wish it would).

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not perfect. I’m definitely not preaching from my soap box here. I have to remind myself to slow down at times. I often catch myself rushing through something, most often food. Seriously, I eat really fast. Sometimes I rush through a glass of wine. I haven’t figured out if this is actually a problem though.

I don’t want to look back upon my life when I’m old and gray and wish I would have slowed down to enjoy it. I’d rather enjoy it now.

I will follow this post with some pictures. Enjoy them, don’t rush them.

 

 


Things that make me say WOW

1. Recently I’ve seen families riding bikes together. This is great. What’s not great is that the children are wearing helmets, but the parents are not. All the parents are teaching the children is that they are wearing helmets because their parents told them to, not because they are actually important. This is like being a parent who smokes and tells their kids not to. Kids start to experience with life and think “well it can’t be that bad, my mom/dad does it”. WOW.

2. Game of Thrones. WOW.

3. There are 8 days left of school. I remember school shopping. I remember meeting teachers. The school year flew by. I’m not ready for another school year. That means my precious baby is only one year away from high school. Seriously. I’m not joking. WOW.

4. Sean came to visit and stayed a couple of nights. We had a blast, laughed a ton, ate incredible food, and just chilled. The girls were so excited to see him, it was a complete surprise. Jo was red as could be and couldn’t stop laughing. Just like old times. We just need to do it more often. WOW.

5. People are becoming more and more aware of the dangers in the food we eat. People are speaking up, taking a stand, spreading awareness, and doing what’s right. I’m continually inspired by these strangers. Learning more and more myself I’m disgusted by the facts. WOW. Ok, Double WOW!!!

6. The world we live in. The shootings. The tornado’s. The bombings. I want to take my kids and live in a bubble. Instead, I’m left to offer more laughter, kisses, an ear to listen, smiles, and daily reminders of love. I don’t want my children to grow up seeing so much tragedy. WOW.

7. I gave up blogging daily of my trials and tribulations of going to the gym. I got lazy. There’s no other way to say it. However, I’ve lost 7 pounds. I don’t see the difference. My clothes don’t fit better. My body isn’t more toned. But I’m inspired. I’m motivated. And that’s what counts. WOW.

8. There’s a 10-year-old who can’t get a desperately needed transplant due to guidelines. How are we living in a world where we follow a rule book that tells us a 10-year-old isn’t a priority? WOW.

9. The Skylar Neese case. WOW.

10. And this picture…. WOW! (sad but true and still yet oh so funny!)