Tag Archives: motherhood

I Wanna Hold Your Hand

I want to hold her hand…forever.

The love of my life has been twelve for not quite a month and in that short time and especially lately, I have been taught some hard lessons.

Like I am pretty sure I need her more than she needs me.

At least that is the vibe she is sending me.

She recently was away with her Dad for a week. I texted her everyday. Her answers back were short. Meanwhile, I’m at home practically begging the dog to hang out with me. It’s not that I don’t want her to have fun, but can she miss me. A little?

She definitely laments when I feel compelled to sing loudly to music in the car, but I feel that is actually a rule for tweens.

She has remarked once or twice I dress like a teenager. But again, I feel that’s a requirement.

The punch to the guts are being asked why I am in her room. Do I plan on staying. Tucking herself in and now not even really saying goodnight to me.

Maybe I get a good morning.

If… I’m lucky.

However, the one that stung the hardest was a recent Saturday we spent together.

G & I make sure every Saturday we make plans. It can be as simple as watching a movie to as complex as a road trip, but with her fast approaching her teen years I want time with her. It’s our time to put everything away and just be.

We went and grabbed lunch and as we were getting ready to leave I asked her if she wanted to go anywhere else.

She said the mall.

I think I almost spit out my tea. My sweet girl is not a shopper. The only way she will go to Target is if I feed her and stick to a list. If we do go shopping once she is done. She is DONE.

I asked her again just so I was sure.

She said yes.

She wanted to go to Hot Topic.

There it was!

Hot Topic is her place. My free spirit loves anime and t-shirts and plushies (that’s tween for stuffed animals).

Hot Topic carries all her favorite shows and movies in some form of backpack, shirt or pin.

I sighed and said fine.

She smiled – huge.

I have always been the Mom who holds my child’s hand. Because I love her and I’m a bit overprotective.

We walk into the mall I hold my hand out which is code for grab my hand. My dutiful daughter does but also lets out a huge sigh.

I say quietly while we are walking “if it’s uncool to hold my hand I get it. You don’t have to hold my hand.”

She drops my hand and says “I’m letting go because you said I could, but yes it’s not cool.”

Mommas(!)

She must have noticed my face.

“Mom I love you, this is great. I will walk next to you.”

“Thanks, ok.” I squeak back.

We shop.

I spend WAY too much money on a t-shirt for her.

When we got home she thanked me and quickly retreated to her room.

I found her a bit later.

Asleep.

I laid next to her… she grabbed my hand and held it.

G and I continue to enter uncharted territory and it’s rough sometimes.

But this is what I know, I will be 100 and she will always be my baby, my sun, my moon, my stars, the reason I try to be better.

Even if she won’t hold my hand at the stupid mall.

Much love Mommas

<3 Caprise

Why Is It So Hard To Be You?

How do you just be you? I do not know where to start with this one without sounding like a crazy… I have not never felt more like myself than I do now. I am not sure why… or how… but I finally feel like the person I was years ago. This might be hard to explain..

I was married for many years and throughout most of my marriage I did not feel like I could be myself. I was trying to be perfect. What is it about being perfect and why do we feel we need to be perfect at times… perfect job, perfect body, perfect life…

I loved my life, however I was just not myself. I always felt like I was trying to live up to someone I was not. I felt like I was always trying to please someone. I am not a perfect mom or person. I tried to be perfect for many years.. I mean I tried to make homemade baby food, I tried to make craft projects off of Pinterest, and I tried to throw the best kid birthday parties.. The truth is, none of that is me.. I love my kids and I would do anything for them. But I am not the perfect mom… nor do I want to be.

I was a stay at home mom for many years and I did love it, however I might sound crazy or like a bitch, but I feel you also lose a part of yourself. I volunteered for Sunday school, PTA, field trips, etc ..thinking this is what I should be doing. I was even on the PTA board and it was definitely not for me… After many years and my kids were older, I was bored. I would try to create projects. I felt like I didn’t know what I wanted to do or that I didn’t really do anything important. I was trying to find myself again and didn’t know where to start. I wanted to feel important again.

I have no idea why I thought I had to be perfect all the time. I did not grow up that way, but I think over time I changed to be someone I wasn’t. I think it took years to get back to my old self or the person I am…I have just learn to let things go. I do not get worked up about all the things in life that don’t really matter. I do not feel like I need to make it to every event or have my kids go to every event. Sometimes we just need to stay home.

Slowly, I started to make my own decisions without feeling guilty. I had to learn to just say no to things I really did not like. Maybe they were things I had pretended to like for years. I realized I am more comfortable with a smaller groups. I do not like crafts. I do not like cooking. I do not like home projects. I like music. I like concerts. I like sitting outdoors…. So many of these things I neglected for many years. Mostly because I felt I would just go along with everyone else and not speak up for what I wanted. Or I felt guilty for wanting to do something I wanted. I finally realized that I didn’t have to live up to anyone or their expectations. I was myself.

I have learned that I do not get worked up over things now..I am late for everything and I have accepted it. Years ago, I would be yelling over and over again because we were

late. Then I realized, I have 3 kids and we are just never going to be on time for anything.

I am myself with my kids now. I probably let them stay up later than they should. I do not have them involved in every activity. My daughter wears the same clothes everyday almost, we wash them at night and she wears them again. Why? Because it’s easier and what does it matter…

It’s hard to learn to feel comfortable just being yourself. It’s hard to not worry about being the perfect mom, or wife, or perfect everything. I have learned that I do not worry over as much anymore. Somehow it works out. Maybe not how I wanted it, but it works out. I have learned to let a lot go, and I can be myself.

Thank you for reading…

Megan

Snarkydivorcedgal

Warrior Training

Warrior Training

When did my skin get so damn OLD looking??? These are the things that I am thinking as I look at last night’s video…51 that is how old I will be in about a month, 51 years on the planet with an 18 year old son.

18 years…where the hell did that GO??? 18 years of being a working single mom, 18 years of being solely responsible for every freaking thing—- how the hell did I even DO that???? Yet, here I sit…out the other side and in fact, I did do it and I did a pretty good job. The kid turned out pretty exceptional even in the face of my many shortcomings…

So what have I learned and what wisdom can I impart to help you through whatever stage of this adventure you are in?

Here we go…

*STOP worrying so much, it isn’t helping anything. All it does is make you crazy and honest to God shit DOES work out. We hardly ever can see how, yet it does and you simply HAVE TO TRUST THAT IT WILL.

*Be honest with your kids, let them see you be REAL…acting like you are OK when you are NOT OK just screws them up because they can FEEL that you aren’t right and you are usually all they have—-so let them see the warrior that you are, let them see that you can be afraid and do it anyway…let them see that you can not feel well and do it anyway…let them see what it is like to overcome things—it is only going to make them stronger, better adults.

*Kids KNOW, whatever it is that you think you are hiding from them, they already know—-so just be honest. Life is hard and we prevail, show them that—don’t make them think that there won’t be challenges—-show them what it is like to be real.

*Take care of yourself, if you go down there is no one to cover for you—-your health and your well-being are a PRIORITY. PERIOD.

*KNOW YOUR WORTH —- I can’t say this one enough…I made so many mis-steps over the years because I didn’t understand my worth…don’t do that. Don’t settle, don’t ‘put up with shit’— know your worth.

*The kids are gonna be OK, they are going to make it. As long as you are doing your best and you are being authentic then they are going to be just fine…stop worrying.

*We are not perfect, we are not meant to be perfect—- we screw shit up, it’s human nature—- just keep doing the best you can.

*Don’t let fear stop you, have the fear and do it anyway—that’s all there is—just keep going, doing the next thing in front of you.

*Help as MANY people as possible, always.

*Give back everywhere you can, be generous of Spirit—everyone is fighting their own battles that we know nothing about—be kind.

*Take the high road, it isn’t crowded up there and don’t sweat it, karma never loses an address—let the Universe handle the people that were less than kind to you, you have better things to do.

*Always keep learning, reading, pushing yourself—-as I said before don’t settle—-keep pushing yourself, it’s how you grow.

*Talk to your kids, listen to them—-don’t be so busy trying to survive that you forget to LIVE.

*Have GRACE for yourself and others—not everything has to be perfect all the time—cut yourself some slack…I am telling you it all works out at the end of the story…

*Acknowledge the small miracles and have gratitude for how far you have come, we often are so busy just trying to get through the day that we forget to give thanks for the progress—there is always something to be grateful for.

It’s funny to be sitting in this place 18 plus years later, looking back on raising this boy on my own. At the beginning it seemed insurmountable, in the middle it was the hardest thing I have ever done, at the end it was the BEST training that I have ever had. I can produce results that nobody else can, I don’t let anything stop me, I don’t make excuses and my mantra has become “whatever it takes”—- I don’t accept ‘impossible’ as a descriptor and I KNOW from walking through FIRE and HELL that you can and you WILL get through whatever you are facing.

You know me, I am always straight with you guys and this was the hardest thing that I have ever done, raising this child with no child support and being the sole source of everything that he required for 18 years plus:). However, it taught me skills and strengths that I would never have learned any other way and it built me into a warrior that now helps other people——that part is my greatest blessing. Let my testimony become your inspiration—- if I could get out the other side successfully so will you…

Here’s to my approaching 51st birthday…let’s see what God has planned, it’s bound to be an adventure and you guys will be along for the ride.

Much Love,

Noelle

You Are More, You Are A Rockstar

You are more, you ARE a rockstar!

Over Memorial Day weekend I did something I think a lot of people in my life didn’t think I could do.

I traveled across the country by myself. I had a working vacation.

My vacation running a music stage for three days at a festival in Napa Valley.

I made sure the musicians got what they needed, got on and off the stage, all communication came through me. I knew one person. I had no car. It was a huge adventure.

The last trip I took my daughter was two and a half and was with my ex husband it was our five year anniversary trip to Jamaica. It was three months after we had started talking about splitting up.

Needless to say not a great trip.

After that my trips have been limited to family vacations. Work trips where there are always colleagues along. But nothing like this.

I think sometimes when you become a Mom people forget you are more than just a Mom.

It’s easy to assume because your life has changed maybe there are certain things you can’t handle.

People forget when you made the decision to leave you had to handle a whole lot.

That even now you handle a whole lot.

People sometimes assume because you don’t wear everything out on your sleeve, running around with rockstars is not something a Mom could do.

Some would say should do.

My biggest cheerleader was the one who got me the job. He has known me since I was in college. He has seen my ups and downs. He knows I’m not easily fazed. Also, as he put it since I work with children regularly and am a Mom this would be in my wheelhouse.

My point in all of this… you are more than the greatest job on the world. In fact because of that job let’s just be honest, you can handle a WHOLE lot.

Even a DJ’s assistant getting crabby because a band who had been going nonstop didn’t autograph a poster.

Or your daughter kicking you out of the bathroom mid hair dry.

Either or.

You a superstars.

Let’s call it- you’re rockstars!

Much love Mommas

<3 Caprise

Can You Get That For Me?

Can you get that for me?…

I was all set to write about my California adventures but something more important has happened.

My daughter is now taller than me.

I’m gonna need a moment.

Now granted I’m 5ft 2in so I am a small person, but she’s eleven.

Eleven (!)

I already feel like our lives go a million seconds a minute now this.

She of course is elated.

Me….

My heart is breaking.

She already doesn’t need me to tuck her in.

She will ask me if I’m going to leave when I go in her room after work to say hi.

Is this going to make her need me less?

I already have not the stage where things I do embarrass her. Although by virtue of who I am that feels like a challenge.

Also I am pretty sure the people in the car next to us at the stoplight DO enjoy my singing along loudly to Jump Around.

Even if she doesn’t.

I realize we are hitting those years and I am scared. I feel like I haven’t done enough. I’m not ready.

I’m not ready for her not to need me.

I’m not ready for her to be taller than me.

Or maybe I am.

Now I have someone who can get stuff off the shelf for me.

So there’s that.

She’s an amazing kid and I knew this day was coming- just maybe not this fast.

For now I’ll take solace in the fact tonight she still wanted a hug at bedtime.

We got this Mommas

Or at least we’re gonna pretend we do.

<3 Caprise

You Got This Mommas

You got this mommas…

Every week late Sunday afternoon I curl up somewhere with a beverage, music, blanket, and my iPad and start to write a post that will appear here.

I always try to find something I hope that will resonate with someone. Maybe help. Make someone laugh. Feel better.

The irony that my maternal instincts kick in, even when dealing with something like a blog post isn’t lost on me.

As I write this – it’s Mother’s Day. I will share with you that while I was never a 100 percent about getting married I always knew I wanted to be a Mom.

I am far from a traditional Mom and my own daughter sometimes compares me to a teenager on occasion, but I have always and will always put her first.

I worry and overthink when it comes to her. I try not to Tiger Mom her too much. I maybe get too much joy out of singing loudly to a song she doesn’t like in our car rides together.

Meals can sometimes be more like snacks.

She definitely gets too much time on her iPad.

I let her have two swear words a day.

My heart hurts when she is at her Dad’s, even though when she’s home we are rarely in the same room.

I love being silly with her. That she is almost taller than me.

Being a Mom is the best thing, deciding to do it alone was one of the hardest decision I ever made. I still worry about it, but I also needed to be a healthy, happy Mom for G. I still have my moments…

I will never be a PTA Mom. I send gift cards and emails to school. I am thankful for her teachers and her grandparents who have helped me to raise such a beautiful, funny, smart and kind spirit.

I don’t look like the other Moms with my tattoos and piercings, but I look like her and when she asks me to I dress up or down – I do. I love that we both like Vans and fun t-shirts.

In all of this ramble this is my point… no one is the perfect Momma. She doesn’t exist. But what you are is a Momma who is doing amazing on her own terms with her whole heart and that’s what it’s all about.

At least I hope so.

You do got this Mommas

<3 Caprise

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

Motherhood & Anxiety

I  was sitting in my first counseling session with my anxiety at full peak. To be honest, I should have been sitting in this chair months ago.  A pen could have dropped and I would have cried because I was, simply put, at my breaking point. My son was noticing how upset I seemed all the time, how something simple I would once laugh off gripped me at my core, and how our home was not as happy as it was before. The constant guilt of that would eat me alive.

I sobbed at that first appointment, the full hour appointment tears ran down my face. I cried about how I felt I had failed my son, how lonely this stage of life was, and how overwhelming life is when you are a single parent. It was as though once I opened those flood gates, which I’ve worked so hard to keep closed, I could no longer close them. They were stuck open, both in therapy and once I left. This was almost too much to bear, I thought. I cannot go back; this did not help me at all.

As I walked out of the office, I refused to make another appointment. I used the excuse, I’ll call when I have my calendar in front of me. However, as I was walking to my car, I noticed I mentally felt lighter. Almost as though I could take a deep breath and fully let it out without tensing up. My jaw was no longer clenched. A coping mechanism I often would resort to, to help hide my anxiety.

I took a hard look at myself in the mirror. My eyes were red and swollen, my makeup looked like a hot mess but I was smiling, I was relieved of my burdens. See after three more appointments, I’ve learned that a large portion my anxiety is because I have placed those unrealistic expectations on myself. Yes, now society has a standard, or pro-quo, but who the hell cares, right?

I was the root cause of my anxiety because I felt compelled to hold it in, conform to the standards of a husband and wife household, along with not ask for help because I didn’t want to fit the mold of the often misleading single mother label. Instead of taking care of myself and finding my triggers for my anxiety, I would hide, lash out, or cry. I would often times forget to breathe, I would find myself tense all the time, and the cycle would continue, day in and day out.

Today, I fully recognize myself in the mirror and it is all because I took one of the hardest steps of my life, reaching out for help.

 

-Heather

Single Motherhood…Our Own Version of Special Forces Training for Excellence

Special Forces training in any branch of the Military is well-known as some of the toughest training and conditioning that exists…you must be optimally fit, quick to respond, ready for anything, tougher than nails, able to react in a split second and have the ability to solve problems instantaneously…you also must be able to endure physical pain, emotional discomfort and you must never, ever give up—there is no escape, no turning back, no “I don’t want to”—you have a mission and you must complete it or die trying. Period.

If you have never enlisted in the Military yet you crave this kind of training for excellence you will be happy to know there is another way to receive it…become a single mother.  I promise you that being a single mother will give you the training for excellence that you crave.  The drill is similar to what I described above, however in this situation the training never stops—the classroom is your life and the lessons never ending…

When you are ultimately responsible for another human being there are a lot of behaviors that you can no longer entertain…there is no “I don’t feel like it”, no “I can’t do it”, no “someone else will take care of it”, no “it’s not my problem”.  You have TO DO EVERYTHING, it’s all your problem and nobody cares if you “feel” like it or not…none of that even shows up on the screen.

No matter if you are sick, tired, lazy, angry, or sad you still have to take care of another human being…you have to see that they are clean, fed, safe, stable, happy and well-adjusted—even if you are not…

You are not allowed the grace of going to bed and pulling the covers over your head when life is looking shitty because someone is coming in your room, looking under the covers and asking you where their dinner is…

You may only have complete emotional meltdowns after your child is asleep and then you may only do it QUIETLY…there will be no crying loudly or howling in despair and it is really best if you lock yourself in the bathroom just in case the child awakens…not a good plan for your small person to see their beloved mother on her knees weeping in the living room—this could cause nightmares…and that just means you won’t sleep either…

As a single mother whose ex-husband lives in another state (which was/is me), you will enjoy the fact that someone will be talking to you from 6am until approx. 8:30pm, on weekdays there will be a reprieve caused by school, however on the weekends (when my son was little) the talking was non-stop from sun-up to sun-down…and I was filled with glee each Saturday and Sunday morning when I was joined in my bed by my son, Otter, Bunny, Kitty and Blue Covers…further enthralled when I was informed that I was TAKING UP TOO MUCH ROOM in my OWN bed.

There is no escape, no break, no quitting…there is only putting one foot in front of the other and doing the same thing over and over and over again…laundry, cleaning—constant cleaning, feeding, cooking, listening, explaining, yelling, crying, bathing, paying bills, working, taking care of the car, emptying trash, buying clothes, food shopping, changing shower heads and toilet seats, changing air filters, putting together toys, solving problems, teaching things, disciplining, etc, etc, etc

The list is endless…trust me.  And all of it must be done with a cheerful heart because ultimately it is the path I chose.  I chose not to live in a circumstance that was sucking the life out of me, I chose not to take child support or alimony because I wanted to move to another state and I wanted my ex to have travel money, I chose to raise this child as I saw fit and I chose not to give up who I was just to have someone to lean on…all of it my choice.  My choice is difficult, it is a hard road to hoe…some days much more difficult than others; however I have no regrets, not one…never have.

This training and situation is not for everyone—certainly not for the faint of heart…and sometimes it is scary…

Like the Special Forces, the single mother must be ready for anything, able to act or react in a split second depending on the circumstance at hand.  You must be physically tough and emotionally non-reactive and you must be able to solve a wide variety of problems, some of them involving legos and superheroes.  You must be able to endure picking up bugs and worms and must not run screaming when you see blood, you must carry Kleenex and anti-bacterial wipes and have emergency snack foods in your car at all times…band-aids too—you need band-aids.

The ultimate good news here is that this training will enable you to do ANYTHING…people are constantly asking me “how do you do all that you do?”—  My answer…I JUST DO IT…If I stopped to think about how I can do what needs to be done, nothing would get accomplished…you just DO IT, it doesn’t matter if you are tired, sick, overwhelmed, cranky, mad, sad…you just do it. 

How I feel on any given day doesn’t matter—no one else is here to run this company, or parent my son, or when he was younger pack lunch,  make breakfast, and drive him to school…there was just me and I just DID it.

You have to create your life the way you want it, in every moment you have the choice to be enthusiastic or fowl, productive or lazy, angry or forgiving…there is no one else running your movie…it is just you, so make the best of it.

-have a great Sunday…just keep doing the next thing.  XO, Noelle