Tag Archives: love

You Don’t Have To Be Perfect

You don’t have to be perfect…

Aside from being a Mom, a teacher,  and writing for this incredible page, I also host a radio show.

Once in awhile my daughter co-hosts. We have a strict recording schedule so it’s important we get to the studio on time. As it got closer to going the other morning I went to G who was on her iPad and told her time to go. She didn’t really move.

I continued to round up our stuff. G was still on her iPad. I tapped my watch “ we gotta go”

“Ok,ok…”

We got ourselves together and got to the station with time to spare as we always do.

As we were sitting down getting ready to record I said sorry to G and told her I just hate to be late.

G proceeded to tell me I reminded her of these little robot dogs from her favorite graphic novel series who are always running around.

I freak out about the littlest thing. When I don’t need to, it will be ok.

I said “I just want everything to be good and go smoothly.”

To which my beautiful old soul told me that I need to be more like her and relax. Those little things don’t matter and I don’t need to be perfect.

It’s days later and those words are sticking in my head. I am actually considering a new tattoo.

I’m kinda not kidding. You know how badly I needed to hear that? Especially from her. I have mentioned this before. I have a lot of Mommy guilt. The massive amount of guilt that I have held onto is by no means gone, but I think moving forward I won’t beat myself up so much.

I will work on taking a step back. Slow down. If I’m being honest this is all going so fast and I feel like because I worried so much about being perfect, things being perfect I missed out on things with her.

I worry about her entering her teenage years and being mad. I never thought to think I was spinning around so much tightening corners and straightening crooked pictures (my analogy for my life) that she might not be mad but just breeze by.

That to me would be much worse.

Good, bad or otherwise she is my sun, moon and stars and I was so busy building a perfect universe I forgot to enjoy it.

So every night I go sit on her bed and ask her about her day until she kicks me out of her room.

I let her pick the music in the car so we can sing along.

I found a Mother/Daughter journal so even on those days she won’t talk at least she’ll write.

But most importantly I heard her. I hear her. I listen.

I don’t have to be perfect, the most important person in my life said so.

And neither do you Mommas.

<3 Caprise

I Miss You

I miss her…

Over the last few months I have been deliberate in who, what, why I follow and friend on social media. I have enough stress in my life I don’t need my mindless scrolling to inadvertently add to that. I’m what you might call a daydreamer and a night thinker.

That’s code for I’m an overthinking insomniac.

Regardless my feed is full of videos, destinations and restaurants.

So when a picture from one of my favorite restaurants popped up, it hit me hard.

The picture in question was a plate from a bar b que restaurant in Hot Springs, Arkansas. It’s where my grandparents lived and I visited them every summer. We always made a point to get McClards. It is a family run restaurant serving food that you can’t get in the Midwest.

One item in particular the tamale spread my Grandmother always got.

My Grandmother has been gone more than 12 years. But lately I have wanted, no I’ve needed to talk to her. To start with I wanted to tell her I miss opening my work email and finding inappropriate jokes. The woman had a wicked sense of humor. I miss our mini book club. I have a soft spot for murder mysteries because of her, but the last year she was alive we read The Divine Secrets of the Ya Ya Sisterhood and would address each other by our Ya Ya names in our emails.

I want to tell her about G. That her spunk and quick wit shines through in her great granddaughter.

I want to tell her I am writing! Like really writing, not just in a journal.

I want to tell her about some of the people in my life.

That I wear pink now.

Growing up my Grandmother always bought me pink stuff, I did not like pink I liked purple. She eventually switched to purple, but sometimes it was our thing.

I want to tell her I still have the Levi’s jacket she bought me when my sweet parents got me a black, puffy number when I just wanted a basic denim jacket.

I still love shoes.

I appreciate a good lipgloss and lipstick.

I like wine. Even red.

I really like my job, I mean really like it. I host a radio show (!)

I keep her bottle of Chanel No. 5 on my dresser and dream of going to Paris and stealing from hotels.

I finally appreciate SOME country music.

But I will not Achy Breaky my Heart.

I sometimes eat cake for breakfast because as she’d say it’s no worse than a doughnut.

I can make fried chicken. I don’t do it  often or as well as you, but I definitely use your methods.

I just want to hear you say “oh me.” I miss your laugh.

There are pieces of me floating around that I feel like a solid talk on your porch swing could fix. I just want that.

As hard as it was to see that picture of the yumminess that is a tamale spread. It also reminded me of all that amazing things she gave me.

 

Strength

Humor

Spunk

The knowledge that size, sex and where you come from should never be a deterrent. My grandmother was a petite, southern woman from a very small town who traveled the world and ran a house, had a career and made sure I always knew I was loved.

 

I miss you.

Duchess Three Sheets to The Wind- Princess Running Mascara Misses you.

So much.

 

I realize Mommas this wasn’t my normal blog… but know I always got you.

If you will excuse me, I’m going to dig into some tamale spread.

<3 Caprise

Be Better In The Middle Of Your Grief

What on earth? How many tears can one body produce? How many boxes of tissues must you go through? And what’s up with the mad… sad… content… tears… misery… anger… denial… tears… happy….. anxiety… pissed off… acceptance and back to sad again? Welcome to the “Stages of GRIEF”.

Can you hear yourself.… “Really? Can’t I just go back to sleep and then it will all go away? What about a therapist, won’t that cure the crabbiness? I know, I know…. chocolate. That always makes me feel better? Waaaaaah.

You have good days and bad days. And the triggers come out of nowhere and at the most obscure times let alone when you’re not expecting it. And the rollercoaster ride of Grrrrrief seems to be going and going and going. When will it stop?

And not for nothing but…..

You want your life back the way it was. You want the to-do’s back in order and the schedule back on track. You really want a do-over. Why is going through the Stages of Grief so hard? Well it JUST IS. Seriously. Nobody wants to be the one left behind, nobody plans to lose a loved one, and nobody knows what its like until they experience it. Nobody can judge the length of time it takes you, nobody can heal your heart and nobody can wipe the tears to stop. Just you. If you trust God, like I do, turn to Him in your sadness and ask for healing. Do what you have to do and press on with joy in the sadness.

Maybe just maybe, when you’re on the other side of this, you can be a smile in someone else’s grief, share a hug, speak a kind word, offer a nice gesture. Do something to ease their pain because you remember how hard it was for you. But for now…..be a better you in the middle of your grief.

 

Your God Girl,

Tracy xoxo

NOTW-Not Of This World

“Not of this world”…I’ve known these four words for a long time.  Thought it.  Read it.  Lived it.  Every day, still, I work on reminding myself that I am Not Of this World.  Being the God-girl that I am, you’d think I wouldn’t have to remind myself… but I do.  I am IN the world but not OF it.  This World we live in….it’s a powerful place.  God’s power is ever present and much, much more powerful… BUT if my eyes are not on Him and my eyes are here, looking around me, comparing, challenging, competing.  I’m sucked in.  I’m doomed.  There is power and money and fame and popularity and attention and affection EVERYWYERE.  I can have those things, but at what cost?

In my younger years when I thought the World was the place to find all of these things, I charged forward, I had it all figured out, all lined up.  I was successful.  I climbed the corporate ladder-stepping on who was in my way, I dated the handsomest of men-spitting them out if they didn’t please me, I hung out with beautiful girlfriends-controlling where we went and what we did.  I judged, I ruled, I competed, I was soooo popular.  BUT I was sad and lonely and alone.  I created my life to satisfy me and yet….oh and I was satisfied – or so I thought….but the satisfaction never lasted so there I was again…going at it.  The cost?  My soul.  I did whatever I had to do to be liked and accepted and important. And I was empty.

Now my life is of substance.  I have friendships and money and things.  BUT it’s all from God and for God.  Money, blessings, miracles, love…all of it.  HIS.  I am here to be a steward.  I am a beacon of His love and light.  I am here to shout it from the rooftops that I am Not Of This World.  I am of His World.  You’ll know it by my words, my actions, my compassion AND by my tattoo.

Your God Girl,

Tracy xoxo

Unconditional Love

In order to begin this conversation with you; I must first define the word – Unconditional.

Webster’s defines unconditional as without conditions or reservations; absolute.

My question to you —is there such a thing as giving too much or loving too much?  My answer to this is, NO—if the giving and the loving are unconditional.  Unconditional loving and giving are I’m afraid, rarer than you may imagine.  There are people that love so that they will get something in return…love, money, happiness, sex, material things etc…there are unspoken conditions on their loving and when the other person fails to deliver, the love is taken away in punishment.  The same is true for some folks in the giving department…they give and then they expect something in return and when they don’t get it, problems arise.

There is also the case of the person suspect of being unconditionally loved or given to—this indicates an inability to receive on their end…you see in order to be a balanced giver you must be able to receive as graciously as you give…there are those that only want to give and become very uptight when on the receiving end of gifts or love.  They wonder what the other person is “up to” giving all these gifts and expressing all this love, they become certain that things cannot be as simple as they seem—there must be some ‘ulterior motive’ to all this generosity…

Funny thing is if you gain a deep understanding of how life really works you would love and give yourself SILLY…for those of us that get it there is nothing else to do but give and give and give and love people unconditionally…really and truly that is what we are here for…to share…to share ourselves and our ‘stuff’…

So many people walk around so tightly wound up about what is ‘theirs’ and what hoops have to be jumped through in order for someone to gain their love…there are times when we see what people are really made of and sadly those times mostly come when tragedy strikes…do you remember how loving and generous people were with each other after 9-11-2001?  Strangers helping each other however they could, sharing, offering love, strength, help, money, clothes, food…anything — we all gave anything we had and we were glad to do so…we allowed ourselves to feel love for people just because and it made us all stronger at a time when we needed it most…well what happened folks???

Did our need for generous hearts subside???  No, in fact it seems to me that we could use generous hearts more than ever right now—-we could use a lot less complaining and criticism and a lot more unconditional giving and loving.  Look around you—the world needs a lot of help from people that understand…there are so many things that we could say are wrong, however when do we begin to say what’s right with everything?  That kind of looking starts with you…there is good in everything, you just need to have faith that it is there and then you have to be willing to SEE it…sometimes it takes awhile…

We have to wake up, we have to be responsible to make things better for ourselves and everyone around us—there is nobody else folks, this is our job.

It is IMPOSSIBLE to:

love too much, give too many presents, celebrate too many things, be too forgiving, be too generous, be too happy, see too much good, help too many people, give too much money, volunteer too much, serve too much…

Nobody ever died from giving too much of themselves, actually it enlivens and empowers you…maybe you should give it a whirl, may make you live longer…when you get busy contributing to other people your own small grievances hardly show up anymore…

I leave you with a quote from St. John of the Cross:

“A generous heart will never care

to go part way; it won’t be cowed

if there is passage anywhere,

but set out on the hardest road;

nothing can cause it misery,

and with faith soaring like a cloud

it feeds on something I don’t know

that one may come on randomly.”

 

~Noelle

Empathy-Wearing Your Heart On Your Sleeve?

The word empathy is a noun. It means the ability to understand and share the feelings of another.

Depending on who you talk to it can also be viewed as a sign of weakness. Empathy. Being in touch with your emotions, wearing your heart on your sleeve.

I can’t tell you how many ex’s have told me I’m too sensitive.

I have been told by those closest to me it is the thing the love and hate the most about me. They know it means I keep my heart open when I shouldn’t. I cry when I am mad. I read into things. I can be jealous. But if I love you. I love you with all my soul. I will take care of you. Gestures no matter how small mean everything and I will do what I can in my guarded way to make sure you know.

I know guarded and empathetic seem like they don’t go but it’s the empathy that makes me guarded. Until it doesn’t.

But this isn’t about me. It’s about my proud Mommy moment.

Watching my beautiful daughter turn into a nurturer. Be aware of others around her and want to take care of them. Most recently with her cousins who are visiting from the East coast. She sees them if she is lucky once a year. Since she is an only child she refers to them as her cousin/siblings. She is in middle school so we have definitely started with some preteen eye rolls and occasional comment.

Overall though she shows me somewhere along the way she got the importance of being kind and caring. Don’t get me wrong she still stands her ground.

Do you know how great it is to be in a conference with four teachers and have them tell me how kind she is?Get that in an email from her guidance counselor.

In how she describes her friends. She makes sure to highlight details. Explain. Tell you why it’s ok. She listens.

Every night she tells me she loves me. She does the same when she leaves for school in the morning. She recognizes some of her friends are different but makes sure to impress upon us why it’s important it’s not a big deal. Her eyes are wide open and so is her beautiful heart.

In a world where people can be so incredibly cruel it makes me so proud my girl is making her own path and leading with a strong heart.

I’m a proud Mama. Who is also sending all of you lots of love from heart on my sleeve.

~~Caprise

Single Mom of the amazing Dbl G
Teacher
Sometime DJ
T-shirt collector
Henry Rollins Middle Aged Punk Prom Date

Battles In Every Day

Battles. There are battles every day for you to face. The most powerful one is the battle in your mind. You could be happy one minute and sad the next. Joyful one and mad the next. On track one minute and falling apart the next. AND…. there may not be any rhyme or reason as to why except- it just is.

Can you see it coming? Can you feel it as it’s showing up? Can you name it and claim it and do something about it? That’s the key. Can you do something about it? With God you can for sure!

Then the next questions is, do you want to? Do you want to live for your higher purpose? Do you want to live the life God has planned out for you? Do you want to take on the Battle in your mind and make it right?

The enemy is sly. And a liar. So you’ve got to ask yourself, why on earth are you listening to that!!!? Jesus has more power in His baby finger than satan has in his whole army. Seriously! The devil comes to steal, kill and destroy and God came so that You may LIVE. So the next time there SEEMS to be a battle going on, remember you have on the armour of God and NOTHING can penetrate that.

My WORST day with Him is far better than my BEST day without Him.

My goal is to finish what God started.

Do what’s right even when life isn’t right.

Not only saved from something but saved for something

Created by God, Built for a purpose

Where are you looking?

“The grass is always greener on the other side, but it still needs to be mowed.”

Your God Girl,

Tracy xoxo

A Picture Is Worth A Thousand Words

A picture or pictures…

I am going to start by saying originally I was going to write something a little light this week. Maybe riff about some of the disastrous dates I’ve had. Talk about a funny discussion I recently had with some fellow Moms about what a growing a person does that no one tells you… and I will.

Except I need to get this out. Good, bad or otherwise thanks to modern technology we have found ourselves able to share and take pictures. Of everything. Ourselves included.

I would like to tell you I don’t know what a selfie is. Except if you read my BIO, it is glaringly obvious my picture is a selfie. My Instagram – selfies. My Facebook… yup.

I think you get it.

When I first joined social media my profile picture was so old my friends would tease me about it. Those same friends now refer to me as the Queen of Selfies.

I’m gonna own it, I can be excessive. It didn’t start out that way.

Truly.

It started out with one or two pictures. Pictures I took for my boyfriend who at the time lived three hours away, who raved about how beautiful I was. That felt good. So I posted it. People liked it. That felt good. So recently after posting a picture of myself when a friend commented that I post a lot of selfies and more in a private message,I was crushed.

I recognize self love is important and I’m getting there. Promise.

But I’m about to be candid…

If you’ve read my blogs you know some of this. If you haven’t well..

Here’s my why. At least some of it.

When I was five everyday after school two older girls would follow me and call me witch face.

When I was 11 I was beat up by a boy because another girl was mad I was friends with a boy she liked.

At 17 I went to prom with a bunch of girls because I was so incredibly shy if a boy talked to me – red as a lobster.

I have eczema.

Struggled with my weight.

Had horrible teeth, coke bottle glasses. Don’t get me started on the infamous haircuts.

I also have scars from surgeries while not necessarily visible to all, I know…

At 47 I struggle with my self image as much as I want to love what I see looking back at me, I have my moments. My vision is skewed. Selfies are MY reminder look at where you’ve come from lady.

Just LOOK!

A bad marriage.

An abusive relationship.

Being unhealthy, unhappy, a bad haircut.

This is YOU!

Remember when you wanted a tattoo – guess what?

Boom!

Wanted to go blonde?

Ta da!

Wear leggings as pants?

You go girl.

Your teeth!

You can actually smile!

With your teeth!

In a society that is so quick to say love yourself we sure have no problem passing judgment.

Even down to things like makeup. Do you know how many times a mutual friend will post “shout out to all the ladies who don’t need makeup to feel beautiful”.

I don’t either. I just REALLY like it.

Getting ready in the morning is my ritual. I paint, legitimately. Watercolors are my favorite. Makeup is just one more outlet for me. Just like my clothes and tattoos…

There is a meme that says: Shout out to all the ladies trying to love themselves in a world constantly telling them not to.

It’s true. What’s disappointing is it’s not just the world. It’s your friends, sometimes even your family. I’m a Sagittarius. We are a honest people who go with the flow. Constant optimists even when we’re hurting.

That said I hope that at some point the snark stops. I don’t have to buy books on how to help my tween maneuver middle school mean girls.

That when you say love the skin you’re in. You mean it.

Until then. Momma take that selfie. Wear those leggings. Put on that lipgloss or don’t. Eat those Nutter Butters for breakfast.

Either way, I really do celebrate you.

Love yourself. You worked your ass off to get here.

Give yourself a break.

Much love Mommas,

Single Mom of the amazing Dbl G
Teacher
Sometime DJ
T-shirt collector
Henry Rollins Middle Aged Punk Prom Date

Battered, Bruised, & Recovering

Hi my name is Ali and I am a recovering battered woman.

My first long term relationship wasn’t a healthy one. A lot of my relationships were not healthy. I picked people that treated me how I thought I deserved to be treated. This comes from being raised by an unhealthy and unstable part of my family, it also came from watching my mom get abused for years before she found the strength to leave her alcoholic ex fiance. Even though I learned my definition of love from these people and situations, it wasn’t their fault that I stayed in these situations. I chose to allow these things to continue and I take full responsibility for my choices, because I am not a victim.

I have had to relearn boundaries, standing up for myself, knowing whats ok and not being to sensitive or nonsensitive to negative behavior. I still struggle with this at times. It is a growing process and I will be growing in these ways for the rest of my life.

To this day I hear anyone raise their voice or hear someone spewing negativity I feel a panic swell in my chest. If I’m excited and nervous around someone new that I like that can trigger the same feeling and racing thoughts.

A big thing is to breathe and remind myself that this person isn’t the person whom has hurt me before. If it is a person how ever that has negatively affected me I take a step back and recoup. I refuse to allow someone else that kind of power over me again and as long as I love and trust myself and stay grounded I have nothing to fear.

I wanted to share this little snippet about myself, to not only let someone who may need to hear it that they are not alone, but that they do not have to live like that anymore. There is a better life waiting for you and it is possible for you too.

 

-Always be unapologetically yourself

Ali

Say What You Need To Say

Noelle’s blog “Never See You Again” provoked me to share. The other day I went to a wake for a very, very sweet and wonderful close girlfriend who took her life. My heart was broken. The tears fell and fell and fell. Yes… a lot of them were for me, because shit…I miss her!!! But other tears were for the memories it provoked of when a boyfriend took his life a few years ago but most of my tears were for her triplets and sisters who are left behind… without her to talk to, to laugh with, to spend time with. I will miss our coffee dates and deep conversations.

One day I’m talking to her and then *BOOM* like a flash of lightning…she’s gone. Life is going this way and then *SNAP* it takes a sharp turn. Dang I wish I had said more to her. I mean, I know that she knows I love her, but I wish I said that more, saw her more, laughed with her more. There are some people…. That every time I talk to them on the phone I end it with “I love you” and others because our conversations are via texting, I end with XOXO. I’ll be adding those to more phone calls & texts for sure.

My girlfriends’ death got me thinking…. What other things need to be said, accomplished, planned, shared …or simply lived out? It pushed me to write a letter to my son telling him in a few paragraphs about the administrative BS he’ll be dealing with when I’m gone and a lot of paragraphs about our relationship, what he means to me, how proud I am of him and the ways he touched my life.

Life is soooo precious. Stop. Today. Take a moment to acknowledge the people in your life. Especially you. AND…. do, plan, share, give, be and LIVE full out. Now. Today. Say what you gotta say!

Before you’re the one who someone loses.

Your God-Girl,. 
xoxo Tracy