A New Year!

A New Year!

As I sit here thinking about 2018 I’m reminded of how freaking hard it was. It was hard y’all. My Uncle had a liver transplant in January and died in October. I haven’t experienced a loss quite like that. My great grandparents passed away in 2010 when I was 21/22 but they had lived long and full lives. Do I miss them? Everyday! But I could rationalize it. Ya know? My Uncle still had a lot of life to live.. I’m shocked that I’m even saying that he died. He.DIED.

However, there were SO many blessings wrapped up in this year and alongside his illness and inevitably the loss of him. So many. God really is so good! BUT, I am so thankful this new year! The possibilities, the positivity, the newness, the wonder, the goals, health & happiness. It’s funny that a new year could invoke so much awe but it does. For me.

This blog began as a way to document my adventures with Jack but a part of me was sad because we didn’t go on many this year. I felt like a fraud almost and unworthy of writing. I’ve come to realize that we did in fact have the biggest adventure of all this past year and that was soaking up every last second with our Uncle. It wasn’t the typical mountain adventure or nature walks or really much of anything outside. Instead it was an adventure of life (and death) which created a dialogue rich in context about heaven and God and angels and Jesus and family and how toxicity doesn’t belong in our lives period not just not in our food and home. It was an adventure of self discovery and realizing just how strong I am… even when I had to peel myself from my sheets some days & that crying in front of my children IS okay.

I am happy to close the door on 2018. So very happy. I look so forward to 2019 and all of the adventures life has planned for us. I am thankful that I learned some lessons like life really is too short to have people in it that don’t care & that negativity is something I can get rid of. I’m thankful for the people in my life that do care unconditionally. I’m thankful for the time I had with my Uncle up to 6 hours before his passing and that I got to tell him everything I wanted to say even if he couldn’t hear me. I’m thankful for even the really awful moments w/ him in the end.. ones that haunt me even BECAUSE what a privilege it was to take care of someone that took care of me.

My hope for us all is that 2019 is kind to us, we have health and happiness, our prayers & dreams come to fruition, we receive grace and give it, that we recognize negative people and things before they wreck havoc in our lives and that we are able to live each day as our last. That we learn to say yes and no after careful thought in terms of our best interest, that we may be a glimmer of hope to someone, and that we have a ton of adventures!

Happy New Year!

Be kind. It’s simple.

Be kind. It’s simple.

Recently Jack started Play Therapy. I’ve questioned whether or not to discuss this here but I’ve decided to for two reasons. 1) When a child needs help we help them. 2) Because I want him to grow up with the tools to express himself in a healthy way, problem solve, and have healthy relationships.

Backstory: He has been through some traumatic events. I tried diligently to shield him from them but that isn’t always possible. I was at the library at our co-op one day and he pushed me (new behavior that breaks my heart) and a friend w/o judgement told me about this book.

It was if God himself placed her there at that very moment and I immediately checked it out. As I was reading it spoke about the brain… all about the brain and how we as parents have to tune into it. We are all a little traumatized so this book helps adults heal too. If we are healed then we are better equipped to help our littles heal. However, we needed some more help.

* Let me say here quickly that my child isn’t “broken” and why I feel the need to say that makes me sick because I’m so against the stigma that comes with therapy. *

He has a friend, my best friends son, and there were (are) times he would almost bully him even though he loves him so much. They’re 4… well 4 and 5 now as they both just had birthdays! 🎉 Where did he learn this behavior? I’d always been patient, I’d always been nurturing, I practice gentle parenting, we play outside, I’m hands on, I’m home with him….. you get my drift. Then I realized two things: another child had been aggressive towards him and used words we didn’t allow (not an excuse but truth) and he was having BIG emotions that he was unable to verbalize to me. Our schedule had been off and there were a couple of life changes that happened but still – where did my sweet boy go? This was beginning to affect our relationship and other close relationships we have. My true friends didn’t treat him any different, were so very supportive of us both, and were willing to help me help him anyway I could. There were a select few that chose to talk about him and me as if we were a joke. Quite disgusting.

We’ve been twice now to play therapy and by reading the book there has been some improvement! I can’t wait to see how he flourishes moving forward with play therapy and by being around those that truly love him.

This is my goal for him. ⬆️ I’m not a quitter and we will win this together.

My goal for myself. ⬆️ And I think so many other parents should take note of it too.

Thursday, we had play therapy and then that same night issues arose with a couple of people I know unbeknownst to him. Friday, probably after a day of processing from therapy he brought up a hurtful event that happened to him from a friend. We talked through it over and over until he was comfortable enough w/ our discussion to go to sleep. Unfortunately, I had to discuss that adults can be mean to each other too. His sweet self said “mommy, I don’t want anyone to be mean to you.” I explained I felt the same for him and that it’s important to be the friend he wants in return.

Man, we certainly can learn a lot from children.

And what a great quote for adults too! ⬆️

Ever feel like a mom failure?

Ever feel like a mom failure?

No? Just me? Almost daily? 😭

Lately we’ve been off. The house is in disarray, our schedules (don’t hate – we thrive on them) have been cray, we’ve had extras come up and life happens and I’m tired and when my house is crazy I feel crazy and… gasp. All of these things are true BUT we are also at a stage of testing boundaries, sharing those BIG emotions LOUDLY, and if I want to be real – defiance. Straight up. It makes me lose my shit patience on the inside, makes me mad and sad and want to scream and cry all at the same time.

This babe is amazing. He’s hilarious and quick witted and charming and cute and smart and creative and adventurous (hence the name of the blog) and really really really sweet and cute… wait I already said that but I’ll say it again for the peeps in the back – CUTE! 😍

He’s also strong willed, determined, and quite sure of himself. Qualities I absolutely love but they can also be tiring for this momma and those near and dear to us. My goal will never be to extinguish that fire!

Even as adults we have to be reminded and recenter ourselves. We have to go back to the basics and build on what’s worked before. For example: with us – he didn’t really talk until he was 2. No delays and could comprehend everything just didn’t talk. He made sounds and signed and that’s how I knew his needs but there were days that he had huge emotions and literally couldn’t voice them to me so he bit me. My knee jerk reaction could of been ugly but I had to pause for a minute and remind myself. I started acknowledging his emotions… you must be sad, upset, frustrated, etc. and I ignored the biting. By the Grace of God and God alone ignoring the “bad” behavior worked well for us.

When things are out of whack or we are going through a developmental leap (I don’t even think they’re called that at his age but ya know) I have to go back to the basics. I could be filled with mommy guilt and beat myself us but tonight I choose to give myself grace.

I pulled out this book at bedtime and we read it. I can not tell you how much I love this book. I change the wording around a bit in some areas but it’s all of the things I say only this book has a way of letting them HEAR it.

And now I’m off to drink a glass of well deserved wine. Cheers.

Toxic People

Toxic People

My friend recently sent me this text message

And I thought about it since yesterday. Do I want to get so personal? Do I want that part of me exposed? No. I don’t. BUT I’m going to and here is why….

And that was just a quick google search.

I fell and when I say fell I mean I dove head in an empty pool in love with my middle school crush after running into him years later. Safe right? I mean I knew him. He was so funny and charming and smart and quite easy on the eyes just to name a few. He drank… a LOT but I just didn’t see it strangely. My mother was an alcoholic and I’m pretty no tolerance when it comes to that but was completely blinded. It took me a good 2 years AFTER leaving that I could even utter those words about him – alcoholic.

Our relationship was coming to an end after I found myself (a non cryer) sobbing nightly realizing that this relationship was not just toxic for me but for him as well. I was classically enabling him. Hindsight really sucks sometimes. AND then I found out I was pregnant. Needless to say he wasn’t very happy about that but we continued until Jack was 5 months old and I literally couldn’t take it anymore. Things were getting worse and I refused to allow my little to grow up similar to me — my mother wasn’t abusive FYI but still not a road I was willing to expose him to.

I had no idea how much worse it could get AFTER leaving. But it did. The verbal abuse began, the allegations began, the broken windows in the middle of the night began, the doorbell ringing (knowing the dog barking would scare my infant) began, the social media bashing, the defamation of my character, destruction to the outside of my house, the threats, the child welfare checks accusing me of neglect began, and the stalking. With that MY anxiety began, counseling began, playing in the backyard vs front yard, calling the police, filing VPO’s, countless VPO violations, constantly looking over our shoulders, not trusting anyone, guilt, shame, anger, etc.

If anyone thinks that verbal and psychological abuse isn’t just as awful as physical try telling that to a mother holding her screaming baby that climbs up her like a tree and physically shakes when the doorbell rings.

So why am I writing this? On a blog about my adventures with my child? Because this has unfortunately been a four year adventure that has yet to stop.

Based on stats from www.americanaddictioncenters.org 8 MILLION American adults battle both a co-curring mental health and substance abuse disorder.

In our case he struggles with alcohol & drug use coupled with Bi-polar disorder. The combo of these is scary in and of itself.

On average 24 people PER MINUTE are victims of rape, physical violence or stalking by an intimate partner in the US every year. That is 12 MILLION people. Let me repeat – 12 million people! 1 in 3 people in their lifetime (nearly half of all women) have experienced physiological aggression which is about 48%.

Was it hard to walk away? Yes. Do I pray for him and his health daily? Yes. Do I pray that Jack received the very best of both of us – since he was in my womb and continue to. Am I sad sometimes still? Yes. Is that okay? Yes. Why? Because this wasn’t The dream I had hoped for for my family nor was it a walk I wished for him.

So what has this last FOUR years taught me? I was broken too. To allow that treatment while we were together and by not seeking help earlier. Is it my fault? No. We are all a little broken. BUT we are worthy – all of us – of being treated with love and respect and not intimidation. That although my little doesn’t see his father he has now a very healthy mommy that puts him first ALWAYS and always has. That I will fight my ass off and heart out to change the laws regarding abuse of any kind and the process of VPO’s and the repercussions of violations and that my story IS worth telling.

If this reaches ONE person and gives them hope then my horror hasn’t been in vain. And that my friends is why I shared. ❤️

Sick & Single mommin’ like a BOSS!

Sick & Single mommin’ like a BOSS!

It’s been a minute since I’ve posted. I’m never sick and by never I mean like 3 times in my life. Good genes possibly and good choices as I get older.

People often say (usually married people or peeps w/o kids) “I don’t know how you do it.” Let me say that in an ideal scenario I’d have a husband and we would raise our children together BUT that isn’t the case for me.

Im so used to being a single mom that it’s not a task but a privilege. Not to say it’s not for others but selfishly (yep, admitting that ✋🏻) I don’t miss out on a thing – every meal, bath, nighttime story, hugs, kisses, I love you’s, etc. I usually respond to the married couples and say I have it easier because I don’t get breaks.. meaning: if my hubs handled bath time nightly for example then went out of town for a week it would be harder for me to adjust. Know what I’m saying?

BUT for the last 3 weeks I’ve been “sick” with an infection that’s caused me to have zero appetite and because of that I literally have forgotten lunch times for my little (mom FAIL) and dinner has become a chore instead of an act of love w/ Bob Marley or the like playing in the background.

I’m petite anyway at 5’2 & 110-115 but went to the doctor a few days ago and weighed in at 101. I nearly lost my mind. Luckily I still have energy to take my little on adventures & my appetite is increasing 🙌🏻 but I’m forced to take two major antibiotics (which I can NOT stand) & before I’m ridiculed for that that me say I am thankful for western medicine. It helps many people. However, I CHOOSE food as medicine, homeopathy, etc. so taking antibiotics that effects my gut I so carefully take care of is a hard pill to swallow. Literally and figuratively. 🤣

Allllllll of this brings me to these thoughts that as much as I want to be supermom I’m still a human susceptible to anything everyone else is. And although I know that I don’t want to accept that.

I’m all my children have. Yes we have family and friends but I’m really it for them. Truly. Hug your babies tight and enjoy every.single.moment because as cliche as it is – tomorrow isn’t promised.

* Im not dying btw at least not anytime soon! * 😘