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Archive for January, 2014

The Things I Love

Often we overlook the things that bring us the most happiness. We take them for granted or we don’t notice them at all. We are to busy focusing on the negatives in our life. And yes, I am very guilty of doing this as well. So today, I am going to make a list of all the amazing things I love and have to be so happy and grateful for.

I have my “furbabies” whom have been with me for a lot of ups and downs and have never wavered. They are always happy to see me with wagging tails and big smiles. Even the ones that have to live with grandma on the farm. They love road trips and running free. It’s always relaxing and fun to watch them run through a pasture and jump through tall grass. Or try to swim. I say try because they aren’t the brightest. One inhales water as he paddles and the other just doesn’t have a clue… Both would drown before leaving the water if I weren’t going with them. So very loyal.

I have the most amazing mother. She tries to be very understanding of the choices my family and myself make even though they aren’t what she’s used to. She continues to make sure that i do not go without even though I am 23 and have a family on my own. The most loving, caring woman I have ever known.

I get the luxury of being a stay at home mom because I have a supportive, hardworking, and dedicated fiancee. He even comes home and starts dinner and does the dishes if I haven’t gotten to it. I don’t know how I got so lucky.

I get to wake up to smiles and giggles down the hall. I get to listen to my son try to sing. I get to watch him grow and become a unique individual. I get to be here to soothe and comfort him when he’s having a hard time. Go to bed after hugs and kisses every night.

I get to create and carry life. I can feel it moving inside me. Every movement a miracle. Everyday a gift.

This is just a small list. I could go on for days. All the amazing things I get to feel and experience as a mother often render me speechless. How lucky am I?

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Unseen Love

Tiny little fingers
Holding you tight
A love that lingers
Forever out of sight
Though you cannot see it
Doesn’t mean it isn’t there
You can feel it in his longingful stare
Just a little boy, wrapped up in his fathers arms
Forever protected, completely safe from harm

Let’s Ask Facebook for Medical Advice

So it’s become a thing among parents and other people to ask for medical advice over Facebook. A very disturbing trend if you ask me. It makes me wonder how many kids are sitting at home and suffering when they should be hauled off to the ER or at least the doctors office for real medical attention. But instead they are taking pictures and asking strangers if they should be worried about their child’s rash or a video of their child breathing abnormally wondering if they should take him to the emergency room.

Since when did we stop trusting our instincts and started leaving our lives and decisions in the hands of total strangers on the internet? We ask people how we should dress or wear our hair. What baby name sounds better or what birthday/nursery theme we should choose. We hold so little value in our own opinions anymore.

In the past, we would have called up or mother or a close friend for advice, not post a status about it or try to get a page to share it for us. And if we couldn’t get them on the phone we went with our gut. How many moms are trying strange remedies for their kids because someone on the internet said it works? They are postponing their trip to the ER for their child who can barely breath because they are waiting for someone to validate their concerns. What if nobody ever does and the child stays in serious condition?

People are asking strangers what they think is wrong with them and getting mad when those people come up with a different diagnosis. Not only that, but you have hundreds of people commenting and many different options as to what they feel it is. Some say it’s an emergency or you need to seek a medical professional soon but others say it will clear up on it’s own and it’s nothing to worry about. Who do you listen too? Which stranger do you trust with your child?

Why have we become so disconnected with ourselves? Why do we not trust our instincts? Our children’s cues? We are getting all our advice from strangers. Even taking advice when it feels wrong to them. I want to leave this by encouraging everyone to start listening to themselves. Give yourself more credit and confidence in your instincts. Don’t go seek advice from strangers. Especially in emergencies.

Influences

I try to stay out of the mainstream gossip as much as possible, but having a Facebook account makes that nearly impossibe. I can guarantee if I didn’t have Facebook, I would have no idea who Justin Bieber is. But i do know who he is and I have heard of all his horrible antics. Driving under the influence is just so cool….

Lots of people are talking about how he is just a “poor kid” and needs to be “saved”. That we shouldn’t judge him and that we should pray for him and embrace him. They want to see him released and let off. He’s just a kid. To that I say, RIDICULOUS!

He is 19, an adult. And he made decisions that could have killed someone. Have you ever seen someone die? I have. I watched a man, a father and loving husband, die right before my eyes. He was hit by a drunk driver. That driver was 19. Would people still be feeling sorry for Bieber if his actions had killed someone? Do they realize a slap on the wrist will only validate his feelings of invincibility. Being untouchable…

Another thing people often say is that Miley and Bieber are not influences on our youth. If they do have an influence on our youth then it is the parent who has failed to do their job. How is that so? Everybody is influenced by their environment. The media is part of that. Unless a parent keeps their child with them 24/7 and don’t allow them to watch TV, leave the house, or visit friends, it is impossible to keep them from being influenced by something. Even Bieber and Miley.

If you say that these people are not influences, I’d have to say that you are completely oblivious. If a stranger told your child that they shouldn’t play with this toy or that one, you would likely step in and say something if you disagreed because you know it could have an impact on your child. Have you had your child come up and ask you why someone said something or announce that so and so said that this is true. Clearly they are being influenced.

Even adults are highly influenced by the media. They are getting plastic surgery to change their image. They are scheduling cesareans because it’s what the celebs do. They are having botox and practicing parenting techniques they heard their favorite celeb talk about. To say that our kids are not influenced when we adults are, is absurd. And to say it’s all the fault of the parent? So even when they are influenced as an adult it’s still because mom and dad failed us? 

As a parent, we do our best to ensure that are children are surrounded by positive influences. We cut people out of our lives to prevent them from being an influence. We change our lifestyles to make sure we are good influences. But the media is everywhere. Magazines at the store, Miley and Bieber dolls, TV, radio and etc. We can try to steer our child in another direction but our kids, just like you and I, are unique individuals. They are capable of coming to their own conclusions and thinking their own thoughts. Not everything we say is going to get through to them. 

I agree that it is not Bieber or Miley’s responsibility to care for our kids. I would never EVER ask one of them to or want them to. But unfortunately they are influences. And they started out as influences to our youth targeting the younger generation. I’m not saying their life is easy trying to leave behind the childish image but I don’t feel sorry for them for all the negative backlash they are receiving. They chose this path. They chose to be in the spotlight. They should just accept that spotlight and fame come with people being in their business. 

They should also, as should many celebs, take responsibility for their actions. Sadly we don’t have many people in the spotlight that we can look up to. And if we do, I may just not be aware because I try to stay away from all that. But feel free to correct me if I’m wrong.

Things I Learned From My Son

It’s amazing how a life can change when you put a child in it. How people you know become someone else entirely around a small child. That guy you’ve always thought to be a huge jerk answers a toy phone when a child says “It’s for you!”. All of a sudden you think, well he’s not all bad I guess. Or maybe the person you thought was always sweet and kind completely throws you through a loop when they tell a small child to get away from them and explain that they hate children.

Most of us can’t remember what it was like to be a child. Growing up has destroyed our imagination. It has taught us that we must always be in a hurry. That there is always something that needs to be done or a bill that needs to be paid. We can never stop just to take a moment to breathe. A moment to look around and see the world we live in. A moment to dream.

Today’s society has also taught us that there are so many things we need to be part of. That kids are burdens and they hold us back from living a dream life of seeing the world and doing amazing things. That kids will put us in a slump. Drag us into debt and be an endless drain on our life. So we should wait to have kids until we have achieved everything in life we have set out to do. Because once you have a child there is no going back and you can’t do any of those things.

Having my son, has taught me that society is wrong. I certainly didn’t plan my son. I was 23 and a week away from doing a physical to approve my enlistment into the Air Force. Am I unhappy that I had him? I was unhappy about the news at first, but I know that I am far happier now than I ever would have been if I had followed my plan.

I learned that life never goes according to planned and that’s okay. It’s not about planning life, but about being happy with the life you have. I have never been happier with my life. My son has enriched my life beyond my imagination. And my life rarely goes as planned anymore. Nap time doesn’t always happen. He doesn’t always want to eat the food I have prepared(even when I spent a week planning it and all day preparing it). My son gets sick. I have to cancel plans to take care of him or because I couldn’t find a sitter. But I wouldn’t change a thing.

My son has taught me to see the good in everybody. To not immediately judge them. And be open to new friendships. Friends can come from the most unexpected faces. And a simple smile can open up so many doors.

I now know that I need to be careful how I word things. It can make the world of difference. And never get stingy on the “I love you’s”. It’s important to let those you love know how much they are cared for.

Snuggle time is a must every day. Preferably several times a day. A hug and a kiss can be the perfect thing to help make someone feel better. Even adults.

I used to always be early, now I am lucky to on time. I have slowed down. My son loves to stop and look at things. Smile and wave at people. He wants to see the world and experience it. I don’t want my haste to stop him from that. And giving him time to explore allows me to take time to notice the world around me.

Having a child gives me an excuse to use my imagination again. If I want to color or do childish things, it’s not weird. I have a child. I can color horses green and make them eat pink grass. I can play with legos and make fancy buildings.

Poopy diapers should be celebrated. Having had to change a colostomy bag for my son’s first three months, I can honestly say that I still love seeing normal poopy diapers. And it helps me not take things for granted because I have been on the other side. At least here, so I try to put myself there in every situation.

Having a child is not the end of the world. Is the beginning of a whole new world. If you are able to open your heart and your mind, you will see how amazing life can be. Hoe much love you can truly feel. I am lucky to have such an amazing child.

Upon You

A poem I wrote 4 years ago….

The night is pitch black 

Nothing to help me find my way back 

No light to light up the sky 

Leaving me here wondering why 

These memories haunt my mind 

All I want is you by my side 

To hear you laugh 

It lingers in the past 

To see you’re angelic smile 

Something I haven’t seen in awhile 

You had a way of lifting my spirit 

Now I don’t want to hear it 

All the words they say 

To let me know there’s no way 

I will ever see you again 

My heart is filled with so much pain 

There’s no hiding it away 

So I’ve turned to the whiskey 

Half gone, and half in me 

They say it’ll be the death of me 

I can’t even speak 

I’m slurring my words now 

Hoping the whiskey will drown 

All the feeling I have left in me 

I can still see the beautiful coffin 

That now contains my everything 

My every wish, my every dream 

For you to be here with me 

But you were taken from this world 

As it slowly continues to spin around 

My knees hit the ground 

As I begin to realize 

That with your life, 

Mine was stolen to 

Leaving me here 

Lost and so confused 

People often say 

They’d give their lives 

For those taken away 

But for me this is not true 

I would never wish this pain and suffering 

… upon you

Destroying a Person

Children. Children are vulnerable people. They are easily destroyed by our words and our actions. Often children are not treated with respect and expected to behave in a manner beyond their years. They are punished, yelled at, and torn down. If, as an adult, people were treated the way children are, they would most likely remove the person tearing them down from their lives. Children often don’t have that choice.

Instead of talking to children on their level, we talk down to them. Make them feel like less of a person. If they make a simple mistake, like spilling their glass of milk, we make it out to be the end of the world. But why? Why do we spend so much time making our kids feel like they are not good enough when we should be making them feel they can do anything? Instead of praising them and letting them know that we are proud of them any chance we get, we are making sure they know every mistake they make and every flaw they have.

When you talk to your kids, do you ever think of how your words are impacting them? A simple “Oh you’re okay.” when they feel hurt can just add to the pain. Dismissing the child’s feelings as if they don’t have any. You certainly wouldn’t do that to an adult. Most people don’t mean it that way, but that’s what it says. A better way to say it is “It will be okay, I’m right here.” Validating the child’s feelings and comforting them to help them past this moment in time.

Don’t get angry with them because they are upset for, what seems to you to be, no reason. Adults get upset all the time. Sometimes they don’t even know why, but they aren’t told to “get over it”, “better stop that crying or I’ll give you something to cry about”, Oh’ you’re fine. Quit being a baby.” Those words hurt. Those words sound like the words of bullies. Why are parents being their child’s first bully?

I guess I just don’t understand how a parent can tear down their child so much. And I don’t understand how they can’t see that they are doing it. When your child comes up to you all excited about something, take a moment to listen to them. Be excited with them. Don’t justify it. Just be excited.

You go to the kitchen to find them trying to make you breakfast in bed. The kitchen is a mess with milk spilled on the floor and eggs shells and yolks everywhere. Don’t get mad. Remember, it’s the thought that counts. Join them in cooking and cleaning up. And request that next time, you would love it more if they came to you for help so you can cook together. Very simple and it doesn’t dismiss they had good intentions, they outcome just wasn’t what they had planned anymore than you. But coming in yelling and screaming is just going to make them think doing nice things like that always ends badly.

And this doesn’t stop with the kids. These kids grow up. They become adults. And as adult, many of them can’t shake the idea that they aren’t good enough. They are still trying to please their parents whom, often times, are still tearing them down. But instead of removing this negative person from their life, they feel they can’t. It’s their parent. They have to make them proud. They have to keep trying.

And they surround themselves with negative people. They feel that what these people say about them is true because it’s how their parents make them feel. And their parents do it out of love so this must be what love feels like. It’s a never ending cycle of negativity. Slowly tearing us apart. Making us feel worthless.

My MIL is one of these people. My fiancee is dealing with cancer and deals with things in his own way, alone. Instead of accepting that and being happy that he is keeping her up to date and that the news is good, she makes sure he knows that what he is doing his killing her. He is fighting a cancer diagnosis and mom is guilt tripping him. Something she does everytime he makes a decision she doesn’t like. How do you think this impacts his life? I can tell you. It takes me days, weeks, sometimes months to build him back up. To make him feel worthy again. That’s just not right.

It is possible to move away from this. Many people do. But many others continue to feel trapped. They have no idea how to get away. Every decision they make is wrong in the eyes of their parents. The people who, for so long, were the only people that mattered in their lives. They have literally spent their whole lives trying to please these people just to come out on the bottom, EVERY time.

Words matter. The way you say something. The way you word a sentence. The tone of your voice. Your body language. It is all saying something. But is it saying what you want it to? Or is it telling people they will never be enough for you? That no accomplishment in their life will ever help them win your love? Make you proud of them? Next time you speak to a child, think about your words carefully. It can make a difference.

Image(Photo found on pinterest)