Tag Archives: family

My Journey Through Infertility

My journey through infertility…

There’s a 7-and-a-half-year age difference between my oldest and middle child.  People often make comments about it such as, “did you mean to space them out so far apart?”  or, “well at least you have a good helper” and my personal favorite, “oh wow, I don’t think I could have started all the way over!”  What these people don’t know is that my children’s difference in age was not by choice.  When my oldest son was 3, my husband and I began trying to have another baby.

I became pregnant with my first child just before our 1-year anniversary so naturally we assumed that getting pregnant again would be easy.   Ever since I can remember, I’d always had problems with my menstrual cycles being abnormal.  I’d had cyst on my ovaries and been placed on birth control as a young teen to try to regulate my cycle and prevent the cyst from growing.  I stopped my birth control after being advised by my physician that it would take at least a year for me to get pregnant based on my history.

Well 5 weeks later, I was pregnant.  So you can see how I just figured that this next go round would be the same way.  Wrong!  I was so unprepared for the emotional roller coaster that came with my failed attempts.  And that’s exactly how I looked at it, MY failure.  I mean I’m a woman.  This is what my body is supposed to do.  Besides, I’d already done it once before.  What was wrong with me?  Of course my cycle became irregular again which made the process even more emotionally draining.  I’d go as far as being 4 days late and get super excited just to be let down by numerous negative pregnancy test.

Month after month I’d beat myself up about not getting pregnant.  I was depressed, and so angry at myself.  Others’ opinions didn’t seem to help either.  People would say things like don’t you want your son to have a brother or a sister?  You aren’t getting any younger, you’d better hurry up if you want another one.  Sometimes I’d just want to scream at them in anger of their ignorance of my suffering.  Other times I’d find myself going into the nearest bathroom to cry.  I felt alone and broken.

My husband was hurting too.  He wanted another child just as much as I did.  And my son was too young to understand.  All of his friends had siblings and he wanted one too.  He often complained of being lonely and not having his own brother or sister to play with.

Everyday I got up in the morning and went to work with a smile on my face but all the while I was dying on the inside from the heartache of my infertility.  After years of money wasted on ovulation and pregnancy tests, my OBGYN suggested taking medication which would force consistent ovulation. He said he almost always saw pregnancies within a few months of use.  I began the medication and was super hopeful.  I began having stomach issues which resulted in weight loss.  While I am always happy to lose weight, I still was not pregnant.

After months of the medication with no success, he suggested a slightly invasive procedure that should also aide in fertility.  I was really apprehensive about surgery.  Outside of having my wisdom teeth pulled, I had never had anything done before.  What if it didn’t work?  What if they messed something up and made my problem worse?

I discussed it with my husband, and we prayed about it.  Neither one of us felt comfortable with this option.  But after serious prayer, I had such a peace about the entire situation that I can’t explain.  I kept hearing in my spirit that I would have another baby at the right time and when I did, it would not be because of anything that another man did but because of what God did through me.  And I believed it!  So much so that I went back to my OBGYN and told him that the next time he saw me I would certainly be pregnant but not because of anything he had done.  He just smiled and said he would believe with me but in the meantime I should strongly reconsider the option of surgery.  My mind was made up and so was my heart.

Several months later on Valentine’s Day of the following year to be exact, my husband and I were sitting in church.  They were having an alter call for people to come up if they wanted prayer.  We’d never talked about going for prayer before about having a baby.  It was embarrassing and also we didn’t want people to think we were having marital issues if we walked up to the front of the church together for prayer.  That day something changed.  We looked at each other and didn’t care what anyone else thought.  He grabbed my hand and up we went.  We told the man who was to pray with us that we’d been trying to get pregnant for 4 years with no luck.  He prayed over us and then told us to find a few scriptures regarding fertility and place them in the room where we spent the most time.  I put them on sticky notes in our bathroom and bedroom and would try to keep them in mind throughout the day.  Again, this was Valentine’s Day 2016.

On March 4, 2016 I woke up to get ready for work like any other day.  My husband was fumbling around in the bathroom and asked if I ever got my cycle?  I hadn’t realized that I was 5 days late seeing as how my cycle tended to be irregular anyway.  We agreed that I should take a test that I’d had in the drawer just to check.  Neither one of us were necessarily expecting anything.  We weren’t anxious this time either though.  We both had such a peace that no matter what the results were, we’d be ok.  I took the test and continued to get ready for work.  A few minutes later we both happened to glance at the test sitting on the bathroom counter.

It was positive!

Two rose colored lines were present.  We both cried and thanked God.  That November I gave birth to our second son.

While I know this isn’t every women’s story, it is mine and it matters.  It’s one of trial and faith.  It’s one of perseverance and self-criticism.   It’s one of hopelessness and healing.  I learned so much about myself, my marriage and God’s love throughout those 4 years.  I now understand that whether I have a baby or not, I am still complete and whole.  I know that my husband loves me no matter how many children we do or don’t have.  And I know that God is faithful beyond comprehension and will give you peace in the midst of your situation.  As previously stated, I know this won’t be everyone’s story and some won’t necessarily have the endings that they’d hoped and prayed for. However, I hope that this does leave someone out there knowing that you are not alone, you are not damaged goods or incomplete as a woman, and most importantly, you are loved.

 

~1spentmom~

Dealing With Back Talk Moments

Did you know that when your child rolls their eyes…it is considered back talk?  When they grunt or groan or cross their arms in thin air… it is considered back talk?

And how you respond will make all the difference in the world.  Friendly Reminder: you are the parent & it cannot  matter if they like you or not.  You are here to raise them up to be responsible adults, so they can leave home, make something of themselves and understand the rules, rewards & consequences of life.

This starts at home… and since you’re a single mom…. you may ALWAYS be the bad guy.  And that HAS to be okay with you.  In your response to their backtalk, without screaming and yelling, choose your words wisely and watch what you say.

I remember one time I told my son if his bad behavior continued, we would not be going to “Mommy & Me”.  He continued acting up, so we didn’t go.  I was looking forward to seeing my mom-friends., so I was also punished by his consequences  The next time he acted up before Mommy & Me, I said it like this…. “You will not go to Mommy & Me but instead stay home with a sitter, as I am going without you”.  Oh…. he changed his tune right away on that day.

Another time he would act up is at the grocery store.  If it was a day that he asked me to buy something for him & I didn’t, he might act up.  Some days he would accept my “NO” & others I’d get backtalk. So I planned a mock visit to the grocery.  We’re shopping, he asks for something, I say NO, he acts up, I tell him if he doesn’t stop, we’re leaving & he’s going in time out.  He doesn’t stop.  YUP….We leave.  That was the last time he did that.

Girls… I’m telling you this so you can be two steps ahead of your kids and their backtalk.  Speak to them with a firm solid voice that means what you say AND stand strong to follow-through.  The message you send when you don’t follow-through will send mixed signals and they won’t trust what comes out of your mouth.  Not Even I LOVE YOU.

xoxo

Your God-girl,

Tracy

Welcoming A New Year Of Growth

I am welcoming a new year of growth, a 41 year old single mother of two small children. Yes, you read that right – I was 35 when I had my first child.  My youngest child was born on New Year’s Day, and as this new year begins I am pondering not just her life, but my own.

My divorce from my children’s father was final last December (Merry Christmas to me!!), but I was doing the single mom gig for a long time before that.  Even before my marriage ended.  When I look back over the past few years there are so many moments that seem significant.  Separation, manipulative ex, mediation, divorce. I started dating again, and have met the most amazing man who is still in my life.

But it has been in this part year, in particular, that I have done and have learned so much.  In this past year there have been so many things that have changed.  My boyfriend and I have had to work through things as a couple.  I bought my home – the first I have ever bought alone.  I have had the difficult job of continuing to heal.  Of recognizing that some of the patterns and responses that I accumulated for years in a toxic relationship, while helpful and protective to me in THAT relationship, are no longer needed and in fact are hurtful to new and current relationship(s).  I have had to work on not just recognizing those patterns, but BREAKING those patterns.  It’s been a pretty grueling year, really.

But looking back now, and looking ahead into 2020!

I am proud of myself.  Proud for continuing to WANT to do the hard work of healing and moving forward.  Proud that I work, try to be the best mom I can be, and that I was able to save enough money to buy my house.  I am thankful that I have such a supportive boyfriend.  I have gained a whole new Mom Tribe of friends, acquaintances, and people I can lean on.  I have had to say goodbye to relationships that were holding me back.  I have been able to work on myself, focus on my personal growth, while also focusing on the needs and growth of my children.  While my past is painful, it has led me to here.  And here is a pretty good place to be.

So I look forward to 2020, with open arms.  May it continue to bring love and growth, peace and happiness.  May it do the same for you.

~H

Learning To Navigate The Steps

When I say steps, I don’t mean the kind you walk up, though this is an uphill climb too. I mean the kind that result from a new marriage. 

My kids gained a step-mother  in May of this year. They also gained a step-sister who lives with them when they are with their father and his new family, which is 50 percent of the time. 

I will not lie and tell you that this was hard for my children in the beginning, it was hard for me. It was hard for me because I was jealous. It was hard to watch him move on. It was hard because where my ex and I had communicated well before, even to the point that you could say we were friends, the communication was cut off. On their side of things, I could not definitively tell you the motivation for that. However, I will concede that it must be difficult being a new spouse and forming a new family when there are extra catalysts for discord. 

I wanted to be friends with my ex and his new wife and if we could not be that, I wanted to at least be friendly. This was never allowed. It was seen as an attack on their relationship when I bought a Father’s Day present for my children to give their father. Virtually every time I contacted them I got knots in my stomach because I knew it would be met with nastiness or ignored completely. It was painfully obvious that he was not able (allowed or otherwise) to respond to simple text messages about the children, without consulting her first. I understand being partners very well, and I think if the roles were reversed I would tell my husband about it, but I would not ask what I was allowed to say or do. The thought of asking permission makes my skin crawl. Though trying to see things through my partner’s eyes does not.

I have struggled and agonized over how to handle this situation. I ask myself over and over when contacting them if it is 100% necessary. I ask myself what is in the best interest of my children. I have gone so far as to consider going back to court to attempt to gain primary custody, though that is never what I wanted. I want my children to have a relationship with their father, a great one even. What I do not want is for them to have to play telephone between their father and me. That is not fair to them. It is not fair to them for people to not act like adults. My ex or myself. 

I am still learning. I am dodging minefields some days and not giving it another thought on others. But, the truth of the matter is that this is a real, raw, and nitty gritty part of divorce. I will keep doing what I feel is in the best interest of my children, and I will take it a day at a time. I will swallow my feelings and my pride to be what they need. And I hope if I am met with the situation my ex is in, I am stronger for my kids than he has been.

Stronger Than Yesterday, 

Alice

The Blessings In The Midst Of A Mess

My kids are constantly making a mess.  Whether it’s in their room, their diaper, my car, or the kitchen floor, there’s always a mess. 

It drives me absolutely insane to think that I am always cleaning up for them to just create the mess all over again.  Don’t get me wrong, I am by no means a neat freak. Nor am I the best housekeeper. I’m that stay at home mom that could use a good cleaning lady.  But seeing as how I don’t have one, and I do like for my home to be somewhat tidy, I daily go behind everyone and clean up the mess. At times in my frustration, I find myself mumbling not so pleasant things as I go around cleaning.  Especially after almost breaking my neck on a toy that I know I yelled about no less than 5 times already. But the funny thing is that no matter how irritated I am, my kids just happily keep on playing in the midst of all of the chaos as if they were in their own little personal amusement park. 

As I sit here now staring at the mess which has spilled over from the playroom into my foyer, I can’t help but to be reminded that this is a blessing. My children are happy and creative and have more than enough to entertain themselves. That is a blessing. My children have a home to play in where they are safe and loved.  That is a blessing. My children love to play and share with each other, well sometimes. But that is a blessing. My children don’t care that I’m not a great housekeeper. That is a blessing. So while I once again have to sweep cheerios off of the kitchen floor, vacuum the cracker crumbs from the carpet, and pray that the stains come out of my son’s new shirt I will try to keep a few things in mind.  We have food, we have clothes, we have a home and we have love.

Yes, there’s always a mess, but now I can be grateful for the blessings in the midst of it all.  

 

~1spentmom~

Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda

I am a person who unfortunately does not sleep much. That means while the rest of my house is sleeping blissfully at 3 AM, I am on Pinterest, social media or You Tube.

There are a few vloggers I follow regularly and they are celebrating marriages and babies and lives together and taking me along for the ride.

While I recognize some of these shares are beautifully edited the emotion is there and definitely gets me emotional.

I feel like I have been carrying around this suitcase of memories from my life before my divorce and I need to throw it away.

I didn’t realize how raw those hurts still were until I started watching those videos.

We all have an idea in our head of how things will be. Our wedding, children, marriage and you either work as a team,meet in the middle, or you don’t.

I also think you forgive a lot because you think it will change.

Once the baby is here.

Once she sleeps through the night.

Once we have been apart a year we’ll get along better.

My biggest red flag was me all wired up having contractions after being in labor for almost a day and my Dad never leaving my side. My ex husband however, not only leaving several times but when he was in the room he was on his computer the whole time. Not once did he comfort me.

Yet I chalked it up to nerves.

No

There would be things later that would show me it had nothing to do with nerves.

I can dwell in regret and compare or I can celebrate the fact I have G. Remember some of the funny moments from that time in my life.

I can be determined to make sure I speak up now with my person and if it feels like a red flag it probably is.

It is incredibly easy for many of us who have been hurt to not let it go. To let it lead us. I have done an absolutely fantastic job of building a very tall wall around myself.

But maybe the tape in our heads instead of coulda,woulda,shoulda should be:

I’m here

I’m badass

I’m a Momma and that makes me magical.

I say it a lot. Being a Mom is magical. We grew people!!!

When that suitcase feels like it needs to be unpacked, kick it back under the bed and remember who you are.

You are a Momma

Much love Mommas

<3 Caprise

Question Your Routine

Hey Teens!

This week I want to share something specifically with you guys.

Recently I’ve been spending a lot of my time writing and finishing up homework for the upcoming school year. This means that I have basically been locked up in my room and focused on my schoolwork. Any free time that I’ve had, I’ve used to call my friends, or catch a couple episodes of my favorite TV show. I notice myself not really interacting with family members; my little sister, in particular, often gets ignored. This is something that commonly happens. I often notice that it becomes part of my routine throughout the school year. It was really something that I never noticed until one of my friends brought it to my attention. He began to tell me about his own issues with unintentionally isolating himself from his family, and about the negative impact it had on both him and his family members. It really shocked me, that I was committing the same mistakes as him.

This really made me question my “routine” and what I should be doing with my free time. Family is such an important part of our lives, and unfortunately I am also guilty of sometimes isolating myself from them. I’d like to make a point of saying that although it is wonderful to have your form of escape, as I have mentioned previously, one must not forget the importance of bonding with family. Our loved ones take time out of their busy schedules to try and reach out to us. Sometimes we forget how incredible they are, and we fail to let them know how much we enjoy hanging out with them. Because of what my friend told me, I decided that it was time to change some of my ways. I realized that I needed to spend moments with the people I love most. Many times, we will prioritize certain things over what is truly important. Make memories with your family, and live every moment to the fullest. Go and question your “routine”.  

-Dani

You Don’t Need A Cape, You Already Have Wings

I am here to tell you that you don’t need a cape, you already have wings…I am sitting in a silent house after a week-long spring break trip that I haven’t taken since “The Trip” back in April 2016. One would think that I would feel rested, recharged, rejuvenated. Well…. I was. Sort of.

Let me tell you about the flight home after an amazing trip with my two favorite teenage humans. Picture this, tribe… 3 solid hours of turbulence. I even considered if the pilot was on his maiden flight. This was enhanced by one terrified teenager who has a legit fear of flying and one teenager who does what all teenagers do best, slumped – passed out cold… the entire flight. Mix that in with several (and I mean SEVERAL) sick children who were projectile vomiting from the turbulence (Yep, you are absolutely correct – there is NO fresh air on an airplane) and the overwhelming and recycled stench of kiddy vomit… Is this real life? Yes. It was. It happened, and I lived through it this past weekend. Eventually, I ended up getting home and feeling like I needed a vacation all over again. Please do not get me wrong here… I am 100% grateful that I got this experience and quality time with my kids, and that I had the means to go on such a trip with them. I am blessed beyond measure, and I do not take one of those moments (or any for that matter) for granted.

Wait, wait, wait…. You’re wondering what I meant by “The Trip” that I mentioned above back in 2016. Ah. Yep, That. Well, I think its time to get over my paralyzing fears, stare it directly in the eye and decide today is the day that I keep looking forward, and quit looking back to see if the past is still there. It’s there. It hasn’t left. I can still feel it. I can still see it. I can still hear it. I can’t unsee it, unhear it or unfeel it. It’s now part of who I have become.

It was around this time three years ago (almost to the day) that my world completely fell of its axis. No, literally. My entire personal world that I lived in completely blew up. In an instant. It was the day I became a working single mom.

I’m not going to dig into any of the details, much of which even after three years are still very fresh to my heart and soul, and the cuts are still very deep and still bleed on occasion. I can tell you with 100% certainty that I was absolutely blind-sided and was not in any way, shape, or form ready for what was going to happen to my life. It was never something I had signed up for or wanted. EVER. After all, I had been the living fairytale. I married my high school sweetheart and at that point had spent 20 years of my then 36 years of life with him. We had been married for 13 years at that point and had two beautiful children. Was our life glitter, rainbows and unicorns? Absolutely not. Was it perfect? No way. But, it was MY version of perfect. It was my world. My life. My everything – – until it just wasn’t any longer. I came back from spring break with my kiddos (he did not join us on this trip) to my then hero, lover, best friend, my person, and love of my life… telling me he no longer wanted to be in our marriage. He wanted out, and he left me. MIND BLOWN. EARTH SHATTERED. To make it worse, I was told in public. In a bar. Yep. That happened.

Let’s take the 35,000 foot detour for a second, and get you caught up to speed – and get off the backstory train. I spent three long and painful years desperately trying to hold onto my marriage and save my family. I pleaded with God. I got angry. I got spiteful. I cried millions and millions of tears. I felt abandoned, hopeless, jaded – any feeling you can come up with – I assure you I felt them and I mastered them. I lost weight and shrunk faster than washing a 100% cotton shirt in scalding hot water and putting it in the dryer on high heat for an hour. Some days, I literally begged to die – because the pain inside of me was so much, so deep, so hard – I couldn’t stand another minute. Failure was not a word that was ever in my vocabulary – and here I was – the picture of failure right next to the word in good oleWebster’s.

Long story short, we divorced right before this past Christmas – and the holidays, well – let’s just say they were pretty much a blur. Kind of like when you squint and look at the lights on the tree. They are there, but you really can’t make out what it is, but you obviously know.

I have a point here, trust me – and stay with me because hopefully – there is someone out there just like me who was right where I was or is even now. I look at the day-to-day and I still hurt. I hurt when I look at my kids when we are now a party of 3 that used to be 4. I hurt when I go to bed in a king sized bed alone and hover on the far side of the bed – and wake up in the same position, barely had moved. I have good day and bad days.

When looking at it by the “days” or “moments – I have felt like I haven’t moved an inch much less a mile. However, when I look back at the last three years as a “whole” – Tribe, let me tell you – I have moved mountains I didn’t think could be moved. I have traveled so far that I can’t see where I started even though I know it exists. I have grown, stretched myself, and learned more about myself and have undoubtedly proved myself wrong every single step of the way. I have survived 100% of my worst days. TRUE STORY!

I am alive to tell the tale. To not only myself, but to my two beautiful children and any one of you that are reading this. I have cried myself to sleep. I have eaten completely alone in a restaurant. I have gone to a wedding solo. I have wondered how I can make it another day. However, I have smiled. I have laughed. I have found strength in the deepest places I never knew existed. Hell, all of this brought me here to all of YOUright here and now. I am walking side by side with you. Our arms are linked, and we are in lock step. I am one of you. We’re a tribe and let me tell you – we’re strong. We’re not going anywhere and despite what you feel (or don’t feel) inside – we got this, and not only do we – we’ll do it twice and take pictures to prove it. (Insert “Amen” here!)

Humor me and consider this for a few moments. I want you to look in the mirror. I don’t want you to worry about the bags under your eyes from the lack of sleep you got last night because your child was up sick all night or because your teenager had their first heartbreak. Don’t look at the extra curves that may surround your waistline because you have been working so hard to provide, you haven’t gotten the chance to get to the gym. It’s not necessary to look at the dry shampoo residue in your hair. What I want you to do is look past the refection staring back at you, and for God’s sake, don’t judge the woman staring back. Only you know what storms she has been through. Only you know where she has been, and where she is going. You’re the only one who has lived her life. You’re the expert of the person you see in the mirror. No one knows her better than you.

Every single day is a new opportunity to start again. Reinvent yourself. Try something new. Spread your wings. I encourage you to do so, even when you’re paralyzed in fear, or have no idea where to even start. If you want to lay in bed all day, hide from the world, and pretend that you are non-existent; go ahead, do it for a day or two. But remember, you don’t live there. You don’t belong there anyway – and it’s not a destination. Here’s why…

If I have learned anything, it’s this. You have smaller humans that are watching your every move. Your attitudes, your composure, your strength, and endurance. They are building their character traits based on your examples. We’re helping shape who they become. Albeit – there is this saying but man oh man is it a good one…. Show your daughters how to be treated by a man and show your sons how to treat a woman. You’re showing them this tribe… and guess what… you’re doing an amazing job. No matter what yesterday’s mascara has to say about it.

Keep chugging the lattes. Keep being that laundry warrior. Be who you need yourself to be for you and for them. We’re all here to cheer you on along the way, and to pick you up and carry you when you feel like you can’t. That’s what tribes do.

Until we meet again…

Jenn

The Kitchen Is The Place To Be At Our House

The Kitchen…. I finally bought a house about 3 years ago for my kids and I. I bought it thinking that everyone would have their own room and it had a family room in the basement. I thought this would be great, all of the kids could play and hang out. Do you think they ever use it? NO! I just didn’t understand it at first.. I would almost push them into the basement to use it. For the love of God, why do they not use this nice family room…

But my kids love to be in the “kitchen”… the kitchen is the place to be and it’s what I love. Growing up, I would hang out at my best friends house with all of her sisters and their friends. It was great and I loved it. I have such great memories of all the fun we had throughout high school. Late night movies, laughing, games, and telling stories.. That is what I remember.

After I had my kids, I wanted to have the house where my kids hung out out with their friends. I wanted them and their friends to feel comfortable and loved at our home. And I finally have it…I love that my kids friends feel comfortable in our house. They will get their own snacks or know where I keep all the glasses. I love that they know how to unload my dishwasher and clean up after themselves. Sometimes they do it better than my own kids. I love that my kids friends will go play with one of my younger kids than their own friend. I love that they have sleepovers at my house all the time

My house is nothing special, it’s older and outdated. However, they don’t seem to care and I love that. It means that kids don’t really care about all the material things, they just want to feel comfortable or familiar. Sometimes I will come home and they will all be sitting in the kitchen laughing and talking, all different ages and grades, just laughing about life, as they see it.

My kids, their friends, and my mom friends will sit in our kitchen for hours laughing and hanging out. I love this! Sometimes I will ask the kids, why do you want to be around us mom’s, why don’t you go and find something to do… but they continue to hang out.

Today’s kids grow up so different with all the technology and apps. I try and make sure I know what is going on in their lives as much as I can…I do all the parent checks on their phones and apps. But I also give them some freedom and independence, which is important. I grew up writing notes and passing them in class and my parents never read them. I also grew up talking on the phone until all hours of the night and my parents did not listen to my phone conversations. So, I do think my kids need some privacy, freedom, and independence growing up.

I do not know how I did it, but maybe it was from always making sure I have their favorite snacks…but I have always felt comfortable talking to my kids and their friends, asking them about their day, school, other friends, maybe teasing them a little…I also just talk to them in normal conversation and I think that is important.

Snarky divorced gal (www.snarkydivorcedgal.com)

Our Chaotic Bliss

Our Chaotic Bliss…

My mother always told me that I could achieve anything I wanted if I worked hard enough. A common message we hear all the time growing up. I didn’t want to be an astronaut, or a lawyer. I wanted to be a mother, a wife, and someone who helps people. Seems simple right? I’m writing this in my overgrown, tattered sweatshirt, my hair in a messy bun on the top of my head, and not the cute kind most women can get away with, in the dark, next to my snoring husband, letting Ed Sharron carronade me.  Go ahead and ask it…. Why would anyone take advice from a disheveled mom? I promise, I don’t have all the answers, hell most days I don’t know how I will tackle the endless amounts of tantrums, school lunches, work disasters, and then some how need to whip up a healthy dinner that most of my kids will refuse to even touch. But I have figured out how in the middle of our Chaotic bliss, raising 3 kids all which come and go to 2 households, stressful jobs, marriage, bills, and needing to keep up with Pinterest perfection people, how to be happy with being me, the mom with the messy bun.

This will not solve your problems, it will just help remind you that you aren’t alone. We are a fearless tribe of badass creators that were born to make the world a more positive place one day at a time. I guess I will start from the start of my quest for positivity. Like most everyone I hit rock bottom. Not the actors and actresses rock bottom that somehow with their glam squad they emerge from the depths of hell looking as if they were in a Pageant. But the gut punched, eyes swollen, couldn’t eat, couldn’t sleep, oh did I mention I was pregnant, with a toddler in tow. My rock bottom was when my now ex-husband cheated on me. I’m sure most of you reading this are shaking your head thinking, get in line honey you aren’t the first, and won’t be the last.  Well this ripped me from limb to limb, shook my beliefs in faith, marriage, and who I was to the core. I didn’t believe in divorce, but damnit I didn’t believe in someone imploding my self-worth either.

I knew I wasn’t perfect. He wasn’t either clearly. But I also knew we had the worlds most perfect daughter, and a son on the way. Everything I ever dreamed of came crashing to a halt.  After time I could handle that our marriage was over. I just couldn’t fathom that my dream of my family was shattered. I’m one of the rare people who was blessed to be raised by parents who have been married almost 4 decades. I did everything I could think of save our marriage, our family, and our kids futures, but nothing worked. I refused to beg for reasons, attention, or rational, I just couldn’t handle one more lie.

My father told me, in the middle of the puddle of what felt like endless tears. “Mark my words in 2 years from now you will be married.” Yeah, sure. I’d rather die alone than put my heart out there again. Fast forward to the day I met my currently snoring husband. I sent a message on Facebook to someone I thought I knew. Get ready for it your going to call me out, thinking I’m bluffing.  I sent it to someone I thought I went to college, who had gone in to the military. I was thrilled at the thought of sending him a care package. Instead I got a message that was rather curt and annoyed me. “I’m not who you think I am, sorry.” I looked at my mother who had come to spend time with me, appauled, as I was sure the entire world was out to get me at this time and muttered “Wow what a jerk!”

We had one mutual friend on Facebook. We both sent her a message, without the other knowing. I watched as the 3 bubbles of truth popped up. I waited with baited breath to hear what sort of creep would be so rude.  Much to my disappointment she raved about him. “Oh, He is WONDERFUL! He is the male you, you will just adore him” I still claim it the was pregnancy hormones that made me take the leap of faith. Hell, what did I have to lose, I planned on dyeing alone at the ripe, crusty age of 89. I let him know that I was mistaken, and I apologized for bothering him.

You know the rest of how it goes. We didn’t stay apart. We talked for 14 hours a day on and off for months. I verbally exploded. Some how he was safe. In the middle of my train wreck of a life, he made me feel heard for the first time. It was the haziest time, and some how the only time in my life I leapt before I looked. Oh, I should have mentioned I’m a planner. A planner of everything, and if it didn’t go to the plan I had in my head I derailed. I find it ironic, I have seen just about every romantic comedy on the planet and they have it right. The moment I wasn’t looking, I wasn’t available, I wasn’t ready, he showed up. But here is what they don’t show you. It’s messy. It doesn’t look flawless. He farts, and it smells horrific. I get frazzled and get snappy. I don’t always look like a pageant girl, I rocked shirts that had baby snot, and coffee stains. But, it was real. It was raw. It was imperfect. It was moment, my heart ache made sense. I had to lose what I thought I wanted and needed, to end up with who I was meant to grow old with and raise my children with. He challenges me. He is a pain. Lord knows he is sassy as anything. He is also the same man who loves me when my spinal issue acts up. He loves my children as his own. Who some how taught me to love the things I hated about myself in the gentlest way.

We are on this journey together. I hope my ramblings will give you comfort and remind you, you’re not alone. Life isn’t perfect, but there are incredible sprinkles along the way that make the dark times, have nuggets of positivity along the way. Positivity doesn’t happen, it’s a choice. In the hard-horrible times to search and dig as deep as needed to find the tiny pulse of hope, happiness, and positivity. Most of all, life wont look perfect. It’s not an Instagram post, a Pinterest idea, or a Hollywood movie. It’s challenging, frustrating, messy, joyous, and is chaotic bliss.

 

Stay Positive and Kind,

Rah- Rah Rachel