A time of Calm

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Today there was a pause in my storm and I was surrounded with calm. There are many seasons in our lives. One thing I know for certain is eventually, one season comes to an end and another begins. It’s the in between that defines who we are. It’s our attitude and faith that determines who we will be when the rain finally stops. We can step outside on that first sunny day and worry about when the next cloud will form or we can bask in the sun and be grateful for the beautiful day. There is great comfort in knowing there is ebb and flow. What goes down will eventually rise back up and we must find the patience and strength to get from one destination to the other. If you’re having a rough time, hang in there. Everything will turn around in time. Don’t lose faith. Just be patient. 

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Mom, Is An 82 Okay?

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I am super hard on my kids. I expect a lot but I no longer expect more than their personal best. This push for better, brighter, smarter, perfect is becoming an inner battle I must fight from the inside out. I cannot tell you the number of parents I know who absolutely freak out over anything less that an A. Newsflash everyone! Not every kid is capable of A’s. As a parent who is more involved with my child’s schoolwork than most, I can honestly attest that sometimes the amount of information taught in class is not enough tobe successful on tests. This expectation that you can give kids an overload on informationin a short time folllwed by an exam where you are expected to APPLY what you learn is setting these kids up for failure. Not everyone can make those connections that are obvious for a select few. All I can say is, yes Chase, an 82 is just fine. 

If I Could Go Back

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Tonight As I sat through my daughters powderpuff game, my mind wandered back to when I was senior myself. I winced as I thought about the opportunities I might have missed. Did I live that year to the very fullest, making memories that I would always look back on and smile about? If I could send a message back to the 18 year old version of myself, what would I tell her?  

 As the years go rushing past and I get more serious about life, I am missing out on precious experiences that I will never get back. I am so concentrated on the future that I am losing the joy in the everyday. I am so filled with apprehension that I miss those things that could bring a smile to my face because I am grasping onto this ridiculous burden I insist on carrying around. It is heavy and I am tired, barely able to take a step forward as I am being crushed from the weight I pile on myself. What is worth trading living in the here and now? What is worth giving up my chance to be happy and wasting days on nonsense with no chance of ever reliving them or getting them back? I can’t help but imagine what I might say to my 45 year old self ten years from now. Why did you get so wrapped up in such nonsense? Why didn’t you let go of the constant worry and trust that things would work themselves out? Why didn’t you laugh more and choose love and happiness over anger and worry? Why didn’t you find a healthy balance and take better care of yourself? Why didn’t you make the changes you so desperately wanted to make so you could love yourself and others more? Why? Why? Why couldn’t you get your act together? 

Tomorrow I will choose one thing to change. Rome certainly wasn’t built in a day and rebuilding myself won’t happen in a day either. I will commit to making one small baby step at a time and give up on the silly notion of changing everything at once. If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? I am going to use a respectful tone in every conversation regardless of how the other person makes me feel. Not everyone needs to know the level of frustration I feel inside and it is certainly not their burden to carry. Wish me luck.

How To Parent When Your Mom is Broken

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Teenagers. Need I say more. The first day I held my my babies in my arms I knew my life would never be the same. Here were these perfect packages of love all bundled up and counting on me to keep them safe. I didn’t know much about parenting then. I knew I had to muddle my way through until I finally figured out a plan. Certainly I would figure this mom thing out because like it or not, these tiny babies didn’t come with instructions. There was no transitional period. A baby was born and I became mom.There were no guidelines or anyone to tell me a sure fire plan to raise a happy, healthy, super kid. Sure there were people who offered suggestions that followed a hint of the theme I was doing something wrong. These days I feel everything I do is wrong. Sometimes I say things that later near drown me with pain and regret. Some days I’m so distracted that I forget to listen. Some days my cape falls off and I’m reminded I am only human. I right every wrong or fix everything that is broken. I can’t be who everyone needs me to be or pretend I’m someone who I’m just not. Sometimes my mom is broken. It can’t be fixed with a bandaid or a trip to the spa. Sometimes I need a good cry or a long walk or some space to breath without feeling the need to apologize for my own needs. Sometimes I need to remind myself that it’s okay not to be perfect and that each day is a new day to wake up and try again. So how do I parent when my mom is broken? The best way I can and somehow I have to make peace with myself that somehow  that will be enough. 

Carry Your Own Load

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Imagine if everyone in your life minded their business and took care of their own responsibilities. I know for myself, when all I have to do is worry about me, I am happy. I don’t mean that in a selfish way. I mean, when I am doing everything I need to do, including keeping myself in a good way by doing right by my mind, body and spirit, I am truly at peace. Negativity is like lint on a new pair of black pants. At first you only notice one or two specks but before you know it, you are completely covered. When you have to carry someone else’s load on top of your own, it starts to wear you down. You become so overwhelmed while the people who have dumped their responsibilities onto you sit back and take a few hours to themselves. That extra weight on your shoulders turns into anxiety, resentment and anger which replaces all happiness with negativity. It isn’t as simple as taking a lint roller and cleaning that stuff off. It means handing that lint roller over to the person who got it all over you in the first place to start to remove it piece by piece. Why is it some do all and the rest do none? Why can’t people pull their own weight so we could all have a little bit of peace? Maybe I will never know.

My new challenge is for YOU to take something off of somebody else’s hands. Offer out of the blue, to do something that makes life easier for someone around you. It could be as simple as holding open a door when somebody’s hands are full. Then pray they pay it forward. 

Be the change!