Tag Archives: family

Needing That Feeling Of Purpose

I think I lost some of my purpose in my job and home life over the last couple of years.  I just feel like something is missing that used to be there.  I have been trying to pinpoint what it exactly is and think I finally figured out that it is that feeling of purpose or accomplishment. 

When my kids were younger, that feeling was always there, they needed me all the time.  It was constantly tiring, but rewarding.   But as my youngest is going to be entering the teen years soon, I could tell I was losing that feeling between all of them.  

As they get older and more independent, the less I felt needed all the time. I have always been around for them. I pick them up from school, give them rides, take them to appointments, whatever they need, I am around to help them with after school.  I am so grateful that I was able to do that for them.

So, I started to think more about the future,realizing that I did not feel that accomplishment or purpose either at work. Was this what I wanted for the next 20+ years?

Work was changing, there were less pats on the back or even a word of gratitude.  The last year changed a lot with COVID due to how hard our industry was hit.  And I have been in this industry for about 25 years, so it has been a huge adjustment for me.  No longer a feeling of a team atmosphere.  Instead I felt most days of being on an island alone.  I missed being with a team and having co-workers.  I missed getting any praise or approval from all the hard work that we put in day after day.  I realized that I am the person that needs to hear that “pat on the back”. It motivates me and keeps me focused.  

The feeling continuously got stronger at home and work.  I felt like I wasn’t getting back what I needed.… there were no warm fuzzies.   I felt like I was being pulled from both directions but neither one gave me anything back.   

As my kids were getting more independent in some ways, they were also getting so dependent in others.  They were starting to be too dependent  that I could just take them wherever they needed to go and do what they needed for them.  I felt like they took me for granted a lot of days, but I am guessing that is the teen years.  I felt like most days all I did pick up and wash all the dirty dishes. The more I was around, the more I felt like they just assumed we could run here or there without any notice.  

Both work and home were pulling me in directions that didn’t give me any feeling of accomplishment or that feeling of being needed.  I needed to feel that purpose again.  I had to find the self worth again.  I just remember how that feeling of purpose used to make me so much more productive and focused.  

I knew that one might have to give more than the other to start with. I might have to give up a little with one to gain more from the other.  Either way, I knew I needed to gain that purpose back.  So it was either going to be at home or at work.

I decided to take a job in a new industry.  I know the grass isn’t always greener on the other side.  However, I knew that I needed to do this for my own self worth. It wasn’t so much about the job as it was about me and what I needed.  I was more about being excited again, learning new things, and feeling a sense of accomplishment.  I needed to find all of that again that I had so missed over the last couple of years.

-Snarky

 

www.snarkydivorcedgal.com

Am I Parenting Right?

As a parent you just do not know if you are parenting ‘right’… it starts when they are babies, then moves to toddlers, then continues right through the school years and teen years.   And here I am.. Knee deep in the teen years.  

A couple years ago, I started to go through giving my oldest daughter some independence.  I have always given my kids some freedom and independence until I felt they could not handle it.  It’s a definite struggle to just step back a little and give them more and more independence.   

I remember when my oldest started staying up later and later, I knew eventually she would have to figure it out that she would need more sleep.  Eventually, she realized that if she wanted to make it through the day with school and practice, she would need to not stay up late watching netflix.  

And now I am going through my middle daughter trying to gain herself some independence.  And this has been the biggest test for me.  I have realized that all of my children are so different.  It just boggles my mind, how really different they can be.  So here I am thinking, well my oldest daughter handled it, I am sure she will be fine also.  News to me… 

I have learned that they both handle independence and responsibility very different.  And it has been a definite learning curve. I feel like I am tested daily with this one.  My oldest was motivated by getting to be with her friends.  She is very social and enjoys sleepovers and hanging out with them.  If I ask her to do something or follow certain rules, she does it because she gets to see her friends.  

Then we have my middle child…. She is very smart and school comes easy for her.  She is content being at home and does not ask to do much.  She loves her netflix and watching tv.   A couple months ago, she asked to switch to complete distance learning and we agreed with some expectations.  I thought this would be a good test at some independence.  We gave her six weeks and then we would evaluate how it was working.   It was a complete shit show… missing assignments, missing classes, and grades falling.  

So, we discussed that after Christmas she would need to return to hybrid.  Now, it should not have been a complete shock to her because the weeks leading up to this conversation, we discussed her grades and missing assignments, along with the importance of getting them in.  

It is the day she is suppose to return to school and she just doesn’t go.  I tried all of my tactics and bargain tools, nothing worked.  Now, with my oldest, taking her phone away would have done the trick.  I am pretty sure that the words “boarding school” came out of my mouth.  I might have even mentioned that the principal might show up at our house… good god, I sounded like my mother 30 years ago, I was rambling… and my daughter knew none of those things would happen.  

I do not even know why I was trying, I knew how strong willed she was…and I knew when she made up her mind it was stuck.  

And now she has still not returned to in-person school.  Of course, she is doing her learning still from her bedroom and of course, she is actually getting up on time, but she will not return. I have tried everything to get her to go back to school and she just will not do it.  She has no phone, no tv, or no electronics.  I am sure her friends wonder what happened to her….but she seems to not care.  She is ok with the consequences.  

And so here I am, still in awww on what to do.  I have asked my friends, I have read numerous articles, but still everyday I am wondering if I am doing it right. I wonder if I am not doing enough or doing too much.. Should I just give in or should I have more consequences.  Honestly, its a gamble. And I am sure 20 years from now, we will laugh about it.   

And the reality is, each of my children are so different.  They function so differently.  Just when I think I have them figured out, another curve ball.  And I am stuck thinking… how many more years until I finally figure it all out….

-Snarky

 

www.snarkydivorcedgal.com

Making It Full Circle

Full circle… that what I would call the last 5 years.  On December 5, it was exactly 5 years since my divorce was finalized in court.  And I feel like my ex-husband and I have come full circle in those 5 years.  Well, I think most of it was just in the last year.  

What is more crazy to think about is that on December 5, 2020… my ex husband and I were having a conversation on going in “together” to buy our children Christmas gifts.  Years ago, we would not even discuss Christmas.  Everything was separate and there was not even a discussion about gifts.  He would have never had a conversation with me about what to get the kids or even asked for ideas.  And today, we are going to sit down and actually discuss ideas and split costs for our kids Christmas gifts.

Actually, the divorce was the easy part of the last five years.  No one prepares you for all the challenges after the divorce is finalized  I have wrote many times about how co parenting did not work for us, how I had to set up numerous boundaries, and how important it was to stay out of the drama…    

In the beginning, we said we would remain friends and always put the kids first, then over the next few years our relationship changed for the worse.  We did not have much communication, it was very tense, many wasted hours spent in mediation and court, stressful situations with our children, etc…the list goes on.  

I have always wanted to have a good co-parenting relationship with ex-husband.  It was what I had envisioned when we went through our divorce.  Unfortunately, my ex-husband had additional influences in his life, which prevented us from having any sort of co-parenting relationship.  I spend the next four years, developing amazing self control.  

I would have not made it through those years without building my self control and learning to let things go.  Its amazing… that I did not lose my shit daily on the crazy requests… 

So instead of fueling the fire, I learned to stay calm and let things go.  I developed insanely strict boundaries. I would only respond to any communication regarding the children and I stuck to the facts. 

I also learned that as my kids got older, I would initiate them to be involved in decisions and speak their minds with both parents present.   I would refuse to be the middle person between them and their dad.  I wanted them to learn to speak up for themselves.  I would always offer support and input, if needed.  And for some reason, my kids tend to feel more comfortable coming to me.  

In addition, the best advice that I ever received was from a friend..she said, “  When it is your time with your kids, be with them.  Do not worry about that they are doing on their dad’s time.”  I kept to what was important, which was the time that I spend with them.  I did not get involved in any outside drama that did not include myself.  

And as much as I wanted to blurt out my opinions and comments to my children regarding their father, I always kept them to myself or my close friends..  

I know I somehow pulled this off because my daughter, who is now 16, brings it up all the time.  Of course, now having two teenage girls, they have lots of normal venting about their father.  

So, After all those challenges, that I had to experience and muddle through… we have made it a full circle…  

Blame it on covid, but we have even had to celebrate a few kids birthdays and milestones together.  Honestly, it took me a while to actually feel comfortable doing this…I have had my guard up for quire awhile and I still keep my boundaries in place. 

I am grateful that we have made it full circle…I believe that it does take time to get through all the muck after a divorce and the challenges will continue.. however being able to make it full circle, gives me hope.  

-Snarky

 

www.snarkydivorcedgal.com

Thank You, Dad!

Thank you, Dad!

It’s Sunday as I write this and I’m shocked by what I’m about to say, but I think I’ve had too much coffee. I made myself an iced coffee and ooh it is hitting me. 

Background music is Judah and The Lion “Beautiful Anyway.” The lyric “Raise your hand and take a second to breathe in”, is sticking in my head right now.

More and more I have been trying really hard to live in the moment. Put my phone down, get off social media, get out of my head. It’s a pretty tricky thing to do with everything going on.

Especially where we live. We have made the news A LOT. For nothing good. As a family we try to maintain a bubble and our center is my Dad.

Today coincidentally is his birthday.

My Dad good, bad or otherwise is the person I hold others up to. He and my Mom have been married for almost forty nine years and again they have a marriage, relationship and friendship that I aspire to.

When my own marriage failed. I felt defeated. I felt like a failure. I think there is a misconception sometimes that just because people are thriving after a divorce that it was an easy decision or journey. 

It wasn’t.

My Dad has never once made me feel like it was easy. He has never once made me feel like I made the wrong choice.  I know he hurts for my daughter and how it has impacted her and me.

But aside from a few things. That has always been my Dad. Never making me feel bad in my choices. Even when I know they were not the ones he would  have made. And standing nearby just in case I might need a hand. 

If I am being honest, there are certain parts of my life I have glossed over because I don’t want my Dad to take on anymore than he does for me. Not that he would, but he would. 

He has allowed me to be a realistic dreamer.

Taught me to question things.

He is helping me and he doesn’t know this, get my confidence back. 

He helped my daughter and I get back on our feet.

He is helping me find my voice again.

And he has always shown me how to love my daughter with my whole heart.

So this was a rambling thank you to my Dad, but the older my daughter gets the cliches are true. I get it. Those lessons my parents taught me. Why they did what they did. 

And I’m beyond thankful for them.

Especially right now.

 

Be safe Mommas

Much love

<3 Caprise

I Missed Your Birthday

I missed your birthday.

You were at your dads, I’m supposed to “get used to it” and learn to share you but I don’t think I ever will. 

I had you last year, it’s only fair your dad has you this year. I get it. I do, but I’m your mommy I’m supposed to be there for the big deals and yeah,I’m throwing a party for you on a different day but it’s not the same. You’re only two you’re not going to know the difference, but I do. I feel it every child exchange, every missed birthday, every missed milestone. 

I want to be there, I do, but I need to share you and it’s the hardest thing mommy’s ever done. I have practice, I learned how to share your brother and sister but its never gotten easier and now I’m seeing the results of sharing as you kids get older.

Things aren’t always easy, you guys struggle with the back and forth, and I know that and I feel guilty but its necessary. You have a Dad and he has a right to see you as much as I do. We are in this together, you’re lucky to have a Dad so involved in your life and I love and respect that, but I’m also selfish and want you to myself. 

I want you to know I fought for our family. I fought hard but I fought alone. I was fighting for a fantasy. You deserve better than that. You deserve a real family and I know now we are a family, a family I created with you children. I have spent my life fighting for a “real” family and it’s taken me years to discover I had one all along. Once your brother was placed in my arms we were a family of two, then your sister and you came along and made us a complete family of 4. Now we all have each other to rely on and yes you have two large extended families to rely on, but it’s the special little family we have that means the world to me. 

In our little world its just us for a few days at a time and I love those special moments. I may have missed this birthday but there’s plenty more I will get to share with you and I’m learning to be okay with that. 

Serendipity

It Is Hard To Believe

It is hard to believe that I just celebrated my 47 birthday! It is hard to believe where the time went.. And as the years go by, I am more content spending my time with my friends and family one on one. I do not need be invited to the neighborhood bbqs or wine tasting parties.   And I do not feel like, I need to invite 10 people to do something…. It’s not that I do not want to make new friends, I just am very content being with a few people. And I am definitely more myself.

I have learned to really enjoy one on one time lately whether it’s with my kids, family, or a friend. I am much more content and happy doing one on one get togethers than being in groups. Years ago, I would have tried to get all my friends together to celebrate my birthday and now I would much rather have many one on one get togethers. And I have always dreaded going to a restaurant where they sang and clapped loudly with that famous free ice cream sundae. Now I dread if my kids have to go through that….I am not sure when the transition happened for me.

This was one of my best birthdays in a long time. The kids and I went to our cabin and spent it with my parents. We had a terrific day of just hanging out, tubing, and having chicken wings for dinner. I did not even let my mom make me a birthday cake… which I’m sure drove her crazy. Haha… The kids and I picked up our favorite pie on the way up to the cabin. It was just perfect. There was not a lot fuss and I really just wanted to sit and enjoy the day. I loved the peacefulness of it all.   I have learned I do not need a fancy trip or even a weekend get away, I just need a few people to make it special. It does not need to be planned months in advance, it was more of how I felt for the day.

This summer I have just enjoyed spending time one on one with my friends. We have not been rushing to do a bunch of activities and plans, so I have been able to golf with a friend or go for a hike with a friend. I have had the time to do all that one on one, which I have learned to love. Nothing crazy, just hanging out.   In the past, we were just always rushing or invited to so many events for the kids. This summer I got to be the only to decide what we did because there were not a million plans being made by my kids activities, sporting events, or get togethers.

Sometimes I feel guilty for not including everyone to do everything. I just feel more comfortable doing things with just one.   And I still always make time to see all my friends, but I like the small get togethers. I don’t mean to exclude people, but I just feel more comfortable with one or two people. And most of the time, I do not even realize when I do not include someone. I just always feel like I get so much more out of it, than when I stuck making small talk with a group of 20 people. I have learned that I just do not like the chaos of larger groups and it seems no one can ever decide on anything.   With just one or two friends, we can just really talk and I can really give them all of my attention.

Maybe I have just learned to love the calmness of my life. The non chaos and learning more about what I love…. finally at age 47!

-Snarky

https://www.snarkydivorcedgirl.com/

Friday Night At Walmart

Have you ever found yourself at Walmart on a Friday or Saturday night? Like, at 9 o’clock? I did. Once. It was then I realized just how much my life has changed since starting a family. Could this really be the highlight of my weekend? That I have some cash in my purse and I can go out on Friday night…to Walmart? To buy Butt Paste, paper towels and socks? Really?

Wow. I guess so.

It’s ok, though, because I quickly realized that I wasn’t alone. Besides the trouble-making tweens in the toy department riding the bikes up and down the aisles, and the extremely ego-pumped twenty somethings in the cosmetic aisle looking for the right shade of lip gloss before she heads out to the clubs…we have us. Us moms. With a fresh 20 dollar bill in our purse. Maybe more.

Here we are, adding up our purchases in our heads. Aimlessly browsing through the jammed packed shelves. With a carriage full of kids who won’t sit down.

Then there’s the clothing section. Do I go in? Nope. I browse from the aisle. I see “us’ poking through clothes looking for something that’ll make us feel pretty, AND that fits. Impossible, by the way. There are women who are trying stuff on from the misses department hoping it’ll fit, and they will look good. But deep down they know it won’t. We know those denim mini skirt days are gone….Looooooong gone. Not for some, but for most.

One thing is for sure…that blouse will look great with that knock-off coach bag I saw at the Flea Market last week end.

But I learned an important thing from that Friday night at Walmart.

All of us at Walmart, with carriages full of kids who won’t sit down, are where we belong…with the kids we love. Inevitably we put the blouse back and settle on a necessity instead. Baby wipes. Tooth paste, Under Roos.

And so what? As I stood in line and looked around at the Moms beside me, I realized what good mommies we were. And I Smiled at the tiny little thing with the fake tan in front of me with her lip gloss, and trouble makers as they high five each other out the door. Because I know it will be them soon enough, standing here with a carriage full of kids that won’t sit down.

~Lynn

Took Awhile After The Divorce

Took Awhile After The Divorce To Feel Like A Family..

In July, it will 4 years since I bought my house.  It has taken the kids and I that long to really come together as a family.  And it has taken me that long to think of our house as our home.  We have really had to work through all the kinks and get into a grove of our own. 

I’m not sure why but I thought because I was not married anymore or have a husband, that we were not a family.  It was like I just couldn’t say the words “family” or call us a family.  Maybe I had this view stuck in my head that a family should include a mom and dad.  I would stumble over the word all the time.  I would always fall back and say “the kids and I”.

The first couple years after my divorce,  I dreaded going to school events, sporting events,  or church with just the kids. I felt like I was the only one there that was divorced.  I felt like I stood out compared to all the other families.  Maybe I  felt embarrassed or ashamed that I didn’t have that significant other.  I also felt uncomfortable going to larger family events with the just the kids or even by myself.   I just felt like I was the divorced mom with 3 kids always, like I had a label everywhere.  I would always wonder if people knew I was divorced.  I dreaded being asked questions that just made me feel awkward or uncomfortable.  I would not reference us as a family to others, but just my kids and I.  

And I also did not feel like our house was a home.  It took quiet awhile for it to feel like it was now our home.   The first year that I had my house, I did not spend much time there when I did not have my kids.  I was in a relationship and we spent most of the time at his house.  It was a place I slept with the kids, but it definitely did not feel like home.  But when that relationship ended, I started to finally spend time there.  

So over time things started to  change….

We first started to stay home more… the first few years after my divorce, we spent a lot of time at activities or away from our home.   I think that was because I just didn’t always feel comfortable or like it was our home. Now things have settled down and I love to just hang out at home.  I know I have wrote before about wanting the house that my kids friends always hung out at and I have that with this house.  My kids’ friends love to come over!  I love the more than anything. 

We have made some small improvements to the house, lots of paint.  The kids have decorated their rooms with what they like…  I have asked their input on paint colors and changes throughout the house.  We would have a little meeting and I would ask their input.  And I have put up tons of pictures of them growing up throughout the house.   

I started to invite my friends over to hang out…. I think at first I was a little embarrassed of the house.  I know I know… t was in a older development and its an older house.  We do not live in the neighborhoods with all my kid’s friends anymore.  Its definitely not as s modern as the house I had when I was married, so it was an adjustment.  

But when I was married, I rarely had my friends over to hang out, so this is new for me.  And now my friends love to hang out in my kitchen or on the deck with some wine and pizza.   

And as the house started to take on a new feel, I also got more comfortable going to activities and events with just the kids and I… And as time went on, I am completely comfortable going to anything and everything that my kids are involved in.  We also plan fun weekend getaways and trips with just us, as a family.

Honestly, now I don’t even think about it.  We have become so close as family that I never even have those insecurities.  I am not sure if it was just time I needed to process the change in my lifestyle or just coming together closer as a family.  

We are a much stronger family now, than when I was married.  Our house completely feels like home.  I know it does for my kids also.  I can tell they feel so comfortable and safe here. We hang out, we plan nights with friends, we are finally just a family.  

-Snarky

https://www.snarkydivorcedgirl.com/blog

I Do Not Regret

I do not regret my marriage or my divorce,it has been five years since I decided on my divorce and I still trust my decision. And I say “I’ because I was the one that finally said the words and knew I needed to start the process. It’s crazy how some days I want to change things in my daily life,what I say or do, but I have never wanted to change my decision on my divorce. However, I have also never wanted to change my decision to get married.

I do not regret my marriage and I do not regret my divorce. I know it’s probably hard for some to understand. I actually had many good years during my marriage. We were not the explosive fighters or abusers, we were just a couple that got lost and couldn’t get it back together. However, in those 13 years I experienced a lot.

We had a few years being married without any children, when we were newlyweds buying our 1st house, excelling in our careers, still hanging out with college friends, and enjoying our free time together. Then over the next 10 years of our marriage, we had 3 kids….

I learned how to be a mom and I am still learning. There are so many experiences from that time of my life that I could never regret it. I love to tell my kids all the stories from when they were little, along with stories about their dad and I.

Many times, I wondered why I never regretted either. At times I wonder what makes me different from others that regret their marriage or regret their divorce. I’m still waiting to feel some type of regret, but I never do. At times, it’s like I want to make myself feel some regret but I don’t. My divorce does not make me sad, I know it was the right decision.

I could be a negative person about my marriage and my divorce, but that is just not me. I try to not be the person that is always saying “why me”. And I do not want to all concentrate on all the negative. The truth is, I made the decision to get married and then divorced. And neither decision makes me feel like a failure in either way.

I have spent the last 5 years building my life. I went back to work full time. I have bought a house. I have learned what I really enjoy and what I don’t. My kids and I have figured out a routine and life that works for us. And it does take time, it’s a long process to go through so many changes and emotions. And there are definitely some grey areas within those 5 years.

I continue to move forward. I continue to learn about what I want in life. I continue to remember what I took away from my marriage that needed work.

Communication was poor and I have tried to change that through my relationships with people now. I have learned to tell people more of what I want rather than guessing. My ex husband and I never discussed what we truly needed or wanted in our marriage. It was always a guessing game for me and trying to figure out what he wanted. I have now learned I need to ask.

I have also learned to not always be a pleaser to everyone and I say no. I have learned that I can make everyone happy.

My marriage and my divorce both actually helped me get to the person I am now. And continue to grow into. I know I am more myself now than I was when I was married, however I still do not regret any of it. But damn,I am a lot happier now. Enjoy life, all the experiences…

-Snarky

https://www.snarkydivorcedgirl.com/blog

Lean In

Lean in…when that catchphrase first came out I’m pretty sure it was meant to be used for powerful situations.

Not trying to maneuver your new normal during a world that everyday feels more surreal.

I have officially been home now for a month. My state has extended its Stay at Home order until May 26th. When I heard the news I was in the middle of my new normal work day. I took my glasses off. Took my headphones off and silently yelled into my hands.

I am what you would call a high risk person. Two heart surgeries I had forty years ago means I can’t leave my house. The fear is if I get this my stitched up heart won’t know what to do.

I am luckier than a lot of people. I have a job. Which I got offered ironically a week before everything went. That’s my term… went.

The last time I saw everyone in person was my job interview. A month ago. Some of them I only know thanks to ZOOM.

And thank goodness for this job, because my previous job would have laid me off. They did. Three days before I officially started my new job I got a lengthy email telling me as much.

My daughter’s school like a lot of yours is now closed for the rest of the year. Thankfully they have really done a lot to support everyone one with distance learning. But she’s in 7th grade. She abruptly had to empty her locker and pivot.

I was a Preschool Director before I got my new job. I didn’t get to say goodbye to my families, my kids…

But I’m leaning in.

I get up. I get ready for work. I try to focus. But I have my moments. Where I have to run to the bathroom and sit on the toilet seat and cry.

I lean in to being afraid of all the unknowns.

I lean in to being late for a meeting because I got distracted by the news.

I lean into cats and dogs and kids interrupting meetings.

And we all smile.

I lean into not really ever wanting to wear shoes again. Leggings are better than jeans.

I lean into Friday nights might be Tuesday nights.

I lean into worrying about my Grandfather who is states away. I lean into reading horoscopes with my best friend.

I lean into hugging my daughter so much. I lean into telling people I can’t wait to squish their faces.

I lean into missing certain people. Which makes me ugly cry.

I lean into waterproof mascara.

I lean into not cutting my own hair. No comment on coloring it. LOL…

I lean into recording my radio show again for the first time in a month and crying because it’s the first time in a long time I have felt normal. Because something that is such a huge part of me is back.

I have no magic words. No sage advice. I am just rinse, lather, repeat, lean.

I am sending you love and hoping you are safe Mommas.

<3 Caprise