Stories

It Happened For A Reason

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My, oh my, so much to say! Something has happened to me between the last post I wrote and this new post.  I have always had faith and have been somewhat religious, however I did not realize how much disconnect was involved in my relationship with God-until recently.  I use to say that I wanted to go to church, but never did, I use to say I wanted to read the Bible, but never did, I use to want to listen to Christian music, but never did.  The problem here was not with my thoughts, but with my actions.  Their was a big part of me that wanted to change my ways, go to Church, and follow Christ, but I did not.  Did this make me a bad person?  No, not at all–It just meant that I was lost and needed some guidance to follow the light again. 
One day, my best friend sends me a text asking me if I would like to go to Church with her–So I decide to go.  I am proud to say that I have been going to Church for almost two months now and within that time period both my husband and I have been baptized.  I have decided to leave my old ways and journey on my new path to follow Christ.  This change has helped me look at life in a new lens, see things differently than I did before.
It has helped me reevaluate the people in my life–the ones that are there for you only when your life is going good or when it is convenient for them are the wrong They.  The ones who are there for you during good and bad times in your life are the right They.  I want to surround myself by good people so that I can follow in their footsteps and go down the right path with them.  
I know you are probably reading this wondering how does this fit in with our blog–Well, in the past I have had a hard time forgiving my family for some of the ongoing issues we have had and I know we are suppose to forgive, but it isnt without difficulty-until now.  Jesus was sent to the Cross to die for our sins and so we should forgive, just as we have been forgiven.  I have forgiven my family, regardless of the issues we have faced in the path, they will always be my family and I will always love them no matter if they love me back or not.  I truly believe that this transformation that I am currently going through is a miracle from God–God created us all with a unique purpose in life and I am on my journey of seeking out my purpose. I would not necessarily say that I was a bad person, but I definitely was not following in the footsteps of Christ.  I was taken out of the dark and brought into the light.  It happened for a reason and I will be forever grateful.    

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Learning lessons as the time passes

When creating this blog I thought that I would be a fantastic blogger and continuously be a day to day writer just popping stories out left and right.  Boy, was I wrong! Today I realized that there has not been a blog posted on our site in over a month. I can’t honestly give a definite reason as to why not though. Have I been hiding under a rock for a month? No. Have I experienced drama lately? Yes Have important things happened in the last month? Yes Have I had 30 minutes to spare? Yes. The only real reason I can give for not writing is the fact that …Life goes on and people get caught up in their lives being busy. It seems the older I get that it feels that time just goes by so quickly.  There are so many lessons you will learn in life and that I continue to learn daily and this is the topic that I want to discuss today.

I’ve recently been going crazy trying to a plan a wedding and one of the lessons that I have learned is… You can’t please everyone. I have spent months trying to plan to find and fit everyone’s needs and wants. I was going around in circles wanting to fit in everyone’s vision of perfect to please everyone whom will be in attendance. Then all of the sudden I remembered its MY wedding. At the end of the day the only person that needs to be please with the event is myself and my groom right ?!? Bill Cosby once said ” I don’t know the secret to success, but the secret to failure is trying to please everyone”.  I know that it is human nature to want to feel that sense of belonging, liked, respected, but it shouldn’t be at the expense of your own happiness. People can’t give you that: you have to give yourself that. At the end of the day, you have to answer to yourself so speak up, demand the respect you deserve, and always stay true to your values.

Another thing is taking things for granted which is a hard lesson to learn. Life can change in an instant and you need to make sure that you appreciate what you have while you still have it.  Many people don’t appreciate things until there gone: these things include health, family, friends, jobs, and money. Many young people think that your parents will always be there for you,  but that’s not true. You can think that your friends will always be there for you, but they wont be. You won’t always have time time to get back in touch with someone, hang out with someone, or mend broken relationships. Nothing in life is guaranteed to be there tomorrow, including your loved ones. So if there are things in your life that you have left unsaid or grudges you are holding .. you need to ask if you’re willing to live with those things be unsettled. The chance to fix things or say something wont always be waiting for you. Ask yourself… if the petty stuff is worth it? This also can work in the favor of getting rid of the negative people in your life. Negative people are like leeches.. all they do is suck the happiness out of you. Getting rid of the dead weight in your life can make a difference that will astound you. If you are giving people 10x more than they are giving you then it is time to cut the cord. Try it, it has made me happier than I have ever been.

Lastly, you can’t always have what you want in life. Life is still out there happening while you’re busy making plans. Things don’t always work out accordingly even when you put in the hard work.. and there is nothing wrong with that.  Everyone has expectations and visions of what our “ideal” life will look like or our “dream life” will be. In reality that isn’t what we end up with regardless of the effort. Dreams fail, mind change, and wishes don’t come true or often we change our minds in mid-course of chasing something.  There are going to be challenges we will face, obstacles we will over come, and failures we will experience. Through all the road blocks and direction changes the most important thing we will discover will be the right direction.

In conclusion, my final thought is… As time goes on you’ll understand what lasts, lasts: what doesn’t, doesn’t. Time solves most things. And what time cant solve, you have to solve yourself. 

Only the strong survive

Breaks: The door to a blank slate

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Give me a B, give me a R, give me a E, give me a A, give me a K.  What does that spell? Break. That’s right, BREAK!

I am a stay at home mom of two young children whom I love beyond measure and like every other mom, I stay busy from sun up to sun down.  I start out by waking up, getting my kids dressed, preparing breakfast, having story time, washing dishes, washing and drying clothes, feeding the dogs, vacuuming, sweeping, mopping, etc.  By the time my husband comes home I am in tears from being physically, mentally, and emotionally drained. I honestly hate for him to see me like this–this sort of unstable state of being, but this is the reality.

As a mom, I naturally put my kids before myself and I am always working hard to ensure that they have everything that they need.  Their are many days where I become so invested in making sure that my kids are happy and taken care of that I tend to forget to try and take care of myself such as eating meals, brushing my teeth, taking restroom breaks, and brushing my hair.  Now when I became pregnant with my children, I made a promise that I would put my whole self into caring for kids and ensuring that they had everything they needed plus more–no matter what it took.  How am I suppose to continue to fulfill this promise if I am constantly exhausted, overwhelmed, and frustrated?

I love my kids dearly, but their comes a time where the car is going to run out of gas and we are going to need to stop and refuel.  In other words, no matter how good of a mom you may be, sooner or later you are going to need a break. The first thing that comes to mind for many moms is attempting to take a break during nap time, however not this momma–my son tries to nap but his older sister likes to wake him up.  So I am forced to seek out other sources for a break opportunity.

Now when I say Break, I don’t mean an all inclusive trip to Hawaii, although that would be a dream come true.  What I mean by Break is going into your bedroom (alone) and taking a moment, taking a jog around the block, reading a book, watching a funny movie, listening to music, crafting–whatever you need to do in order to collect your thoughts, regain some energy, and to find yourself.  Breaks are not an excuse for moms to get out of taking care of  the kids, rather an opportunity for us to hold onto our sanity.
Whenever I get the opportunity to take breaks I am beyond grateful for them even if they are just 5 minutes–you can do alot in 5 minutes.

Having time to myself allows for me to calm down from whatever frustration I may have been feeling, to rest from the busy non-stop day, to have time of no crying children, to feed my empty rumbling tummy, to brush my tangled hair, to clean my plaque filled teeth, to use the restroom after holding it for several hours, to realize that just because I chose to take a break doesn’t make me a bad mom.

I cant imagine my life without my kids but, some days things seem impossible to achieve with the constant needs and wants that kids require. I realize that I took things for granted on how easily I could get things done before I became a mom, I didn’t know how easy I had it ! There is no such thing as running into a store “real quick” hahaha. I haven’t been in the store for one thing or without a near melt break down since kids came into the picture. I told myself I would never be the mom whom bribed kids with food to hush or the mom of the kid throwing the huge tantrum. If we could just get in and out of the store without a toy purchased, open food containers, or a tantrum it would be a miracle that I have yet to see happen. There has been times I’ve debated if i want my house run out of food before I’ve decided to make the dreadful trip to the supermarket.

Private time in the restroom has completely gone out the window. Honestly, I don’t even know what privacy is anymore. I cant’t make it in and out of the restroom without a herd of children barreling through the door to watch me do my business. They must believe it is a fascinating place where mom make the magic happen with the way they stare at me. If they aren’t in the restroom then it is the sound of knock,knock, knock, “mom,mom,mom” over and over. “Moms, not here kids !”

I used to watch my own shows on television and loved my hours of juicy episodes of shows like Gossip Girl or Pretty Little Liars. Now, I couldn’t even tell you who is who on my once loved shows. I spend hours listening to “Hot dog, Hot dog, Hot Diggity Dog” If I could tell you how many times I wanna shove that hot dog where the sun doesn’t shine! People tell me ” oh just record and watch later”. There is never a “later” and if I did stumble upon a chance to watch a show, after the kids were in bed, I would be snoring within the first 5 minutes and it would be a lost cause.

I’m sure I took the simple things for granted that are now small victories but, its a daily battle that I’m willing to fight. Life is much more difficult with children but, its also more full of joy and I’m willing to take that any day. Some days may be good to where you may not need a break, some may be bad to where you would give anything for a break.  It takes a strong person to admit these struggles and at the end of every single day I know that I used every ounce of energy in my body to provide for my children so that they can continue to grow in a safe, loving, nurturing environment.

The beauty in all of this is that it is best to forget about all the bad things that happen today and focus on how you are going to make tomorrow a better day.  Everyday is a new day, it is a break, it is a fresh start, it is an opportunity for me to start with a blank slate.

This post is dedicated to all of you moms out there–You are not alone.

Reminiscing the good times

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Our blog was created to use as a source of therapy for our past  family experiences, but also to reach out to others who may be going through some of the same experiences that we have been through. While we have been battling this hurt for what seems like forever, our goal is not to overload our readers with negativity, rather to show the strength we have in seeing the positive through the nagative.  Regardless of all of the wrong we have experienced, we forgive our family and we still love our family. After writing a few of our older posts, I  couldn’t help but think how their have been times when our family did get along and let me just say that Those were the days! 
Here’s what excites me about remembering the good times I have had with my family.  When you hear the word Family, you often think of love, care, fun, support and many others.  Every family has some sort of flaws, but if you look past those flaws and negativity you will see the loving, caring, fun, supportive beings that they are– no matter how much wrong they have done.  Even though I have had some negative memories within my family, I also cannot forget the enjoyable times we have had together as well.  I can remember being an elementary age child and going to my aunt’s house quite often.  Many of my cousins would go as well and when us kids got together, the sky was the limit on the games we would play.  We would play tag in the pool, ride our bicycles back and forth in the driveway–pretending to be cars stuck in traffic, jump on the trampoline–pretending to be WWE wrestlers, skate around the house using books as our skates, sing to popular songs–pretending to be numerous bands and I even learned how to ride a bicycle with no training wheels there.  I can remember going to my Grandparents house and sitting at the table with both my Grandmother and Great Grandmother eating cornbread crumbled in buttermilk.  My Grandmother use to babysit me while my mom worked and every morning after my mom dropped me off my Grandmother would say, “Let’s hit the hay”–meaning let’s  go to bed.  My Grandfather use to pick me up from school and take me to the dollar store to buy some bubble gum and that would just make my day when he did that.  These were all fun times and I will always remember them.  According to the Merriam Webster dictionary, Family is defined as “a group of people who are related to each other.” While this is a basic truth, family entails much more than just being related.  It’s about being there for one another, loving one another unconditionally,  supporting one another, caring for one another, being honest, and compromising with one another. Everything happens for a reason and I have faith that one day our family will find this again.

Source-
http://www.merriam-webster.com

Self-taught Parenting

10981511_950060525046412_3288961738720147765_nWhen you have someone to look up to for your job as a parent then naturally parenting would come rather easy. In that case you can follow your own parent’s footsteps and guidelines. But what if you didn’t have the best parents as your role models or mentors in life?  I will admit I was a troubled teen and I believe a lot of it is to blame from a bad childhood because when there’s no guidance what do you expect. My parents made awful mistakes in their journey of raising children, time and time again.  I had 4 parents at one point in time and wasn’t close to any of them. I don’t think their intention was to hurt me while growing up but it happened a lot. Without good role models I was scared to death when I found out that I was going to become a parent myself, especially at a young age. I didn’t have a role model to look up to and didn’t know if I knew right from wrong or how to raise my child in a normal life.

Although, I was from a troubled past I didn’t want to carry those pains and burdens into my future child. I didn’t want my little girl to have to put up with the things that I had to put up with. I didn’t want my child to feel unsafe, unwelcome, unloved, or scared in her own home. I decided to grow up and make the decision to mother differently. I wanted to evolve, change and be the best parent I could be for my daughter. I’m still not the perfect A++ mother but I’m perfect to her. I know that I make mistakes sometimes. Some times during the day I may let her watch a little too much TV on days that I need to do college assignments. I may feed her a little candy before dinner, or let her skip a bath until the next morning because she falls asleep & I don’t want to wake her, I may tell her Mcdonald’s is closed because I want to her to eat somewhere healthy if we choose fast food for dinner,(which is rare) . I’m okay with those mistakes because I’m not making huge mistakes. It’s not mistakes of not showing her appreciation, love, guidance, attention, thankfulness, right from wrong, or ignoring her because I have my own agenda of running around, partying or doing drugs. I didn’t want my history to become her destiny. It wasn’t her fault that I didn’t have a normal childhood. I shouldn’t deprive her of happiness as a child just because I didn’t have it.

I remember as a teen when I would go to other people houses I would think that they were so normal compared to my family. My friends had dads that loved them, moms & dads that showed love and affection to one another, they had happy conversations at the dinner table about their days and weren’t being told to shut up, and just the whole atmosphere of their homes were different. I didn’t like being at home and I always tried to find a way to not be there. My home was unstable and most times it was like walking on eggshells. My parents were too stressed or too involved in their own arguments to engage with us. When they weren’t parenting us they were arguing about how to parent us. I don’t want my own daughter going to other people’s homes as a child or teen with the ability to compare lifestyles with the feeling that her own family isn’t stable or normal. I want her to grow up with a positive feeling in her own home. I want her to love being at home with her parents and feeling welcome and loved. I don’t want her ever feeling that she needs to escape her own home for love in other places. As my daughter continues to grow up I know that I’m no longer scared to face the future of raising her regardless of the experiences that I had. I know that I won’t abuse her, scare her, abandon her, feed her sweethearts and beer for dinner or snacks, I won’t let her run around as a teenager, or let boys stay the night and I won’t be too involved in my own troubles to recognize her troubles. I know that there will be times she will hate me or think I’m ruining her life but it will be because I’m protecting her and I’m okay with that. I guess my point here is to not let your past hold you back from achieving the potential that you know you have within your heart. Also, to love your child more than you love yourself; you should allow parenting to take you to the depths of your capacity to love. Children should lead you on the path to your highest self and you should grow and they grow.

Only the Strong Survive

Breaking up with a family member

  For some break-ups can be simple with your girlfriend or boyfriend, but other times you may not be in the position to “just leave”, feel that it is the right thing to do, nor do you want to abandon someone. Now imagine that you have a toxic family member in your life…. how do you deal with that situation or how do you break up with a family member? What do you do to manage the feelings of guilt, confusion, heartache, or the obligations that you feel you have to be a member of the family ?

  Many people think how could you not speak to your family or how could you do that to your family. Well everyone should know that not everyone has the perfect family. Not all families are built on a foundation of trust, stability, closeness. I know that out of my family I only have a select few members that I could call on, lean on , or go home to. After so many years of dysfunction, in my mind, the word family just means that you share a bloodline. That is it. There are members that will be there for you as you rise to the top just to enjoy the chance that you might crash and burn.  In life there are going to be relationships and friendships that you just cant mend including family. There are situations that you can only handle for so long until you’ve had enough of it. In a crucial decision, there will come a time that you need to separate yourself from your family in order to do what is right for yourself and even for your family members.

    It seems that sometimes the way we are treated by our family can turn into the way we see and treat the world around us. The kind of treatment that you shouldn’t get from your family are rejection, making you feel unwelcome, belittling you, neglecting, and not taking the time to get to know you or about your life. The biggest one I’ve experienced is feeling invisible to most of the people I share that “bloodline” with. These types of behaviors can leave a huge imprint on your heart and it becomes normal to react without them being present in your life year after year.  With experiencing this in life it can lead to yourself becoming skeptical of others, doubtful, and seeing the bad in people versus the good.

  As an adult now, learn that it is possible to move on and to know that you don’t have to repeat their behaviors in the life you have taken the time to create for yourself. Get angry if needed but, use that anger productivity like sports, art, or writing.  If you need to seek counseling don’t feel ashamed because their behavior or negative lifestyle isn’t your fault. If you must speak to them learn to protect yourself from the negativity, limit your time with them, and do not get sucked back in. Many times one can become negative from the constant exposure to negativity, but learn to be aware of your attitude and reactions in order to break your negative patterns or tendencies. Just take charge of your own life and your own happiness. Letting go can be hard, but it can be helpful rather than holding onto those grudges and becoming bitter. Be your own hope for yourself because you can’t force anyone to change whom doesn’t want to. Stay positive and let go of the negative !

Only the strong survive,

Brittany

I Forgive You

I remember when I was young my mom and I use to travel to see my Great Grandmother. My Great Grandmother was a strong, good hearted, funny, loving woman not to mention instantly likeable. I loved visiting her and being able to listen to her life stories, laugh at her old-school jokes, and gobble up her homemade biscuits.
I have very many fond memories of her, but I also have some hurtful memories in which I’ve tried to forget.  The more I try to block the hurtful memories, the more visible they become.  I’ve learned that this sort of coping mechanism has not and will not be successful in eliminating the hurt that floods my memories of my Great Grandmother.  Instead of trying to forget these hurtful memories, I must come to terms with them so that I can then let them go and find peace within myself.  In order to do this, I must first share one of the memories that has been most hurtful.  This specific incident happened when I was a young child and so I will try my best to remember all of the details, but I can’t promise anything.
I can remember my mom receiving a phone call from one of our family members stating that My Great Grandmother had been rushed to the local hospital.  We immediately get into the car and speed to the hospital, once we arrived I noticed a large amount of our family members there, including my mom’s siblings.  My mom and I wanted to go into my Great Grandmother’s room to see her, however we were denied access by one of our family members.  At that point my mom had took me into the waiting room to wait, while she went to have words with the certain family member who had denied us the right of seeing my Great Grandmother.  I then start to hear them talking and the more they talked, the louder they became.  My mom then came and got me from the waiting room and proceeded to have more words with this family member. They continued to argue back and forth and I look up and see a hospital employee coming towards us.  This family member had called for the Medical Director of the hospital to escort my mom and I out of the building.  Was this even possible? Apparently since my Great Grandmother was not in the right state of mind at that time, she couldn’t intervene to say that she did, in fact, want to see us.  My mom and I sat in our car and as I watched the tears fall from her face, I began to try to wrap my head around what just happened.   I was a young child so I didn’t understand the whole ordeal that was going on between them and I certainly didn’t understand why others got to see her, but we couldn’t. All I knew was that I loved my Great Grandmother dearly, I just wanted to see her to make sure that she was ok, and to give her a big hug.  A huge pool of tears began to rush down my face as the hurt kicked in leaving me to think that my Great Grandmother did not want to see me.  My mom assured me that this was not the issue, the issue was much deeper than this. 
We by no means were perfect people and honestly should’ve went to pay my Great Grandmother more visits in her lifetime, however that does not mean that we didnt love her and does not make it ok for us to be denied the right to see my Great Grandmother.  Regardless of how much this has hurt me, I now know that everything happens for a  reason–good or bad–and I was meant to learn something from this situation. I am now a stronger person and have learned to find peace within it all. 
To my Great Grandmother—I love you, I miss you, and I will always cherish the memories we made together. 
To the family member who denied me the right of seeing my Great Grandmother—I forgive you.