Words of Wisdom – A Fantastic Conversation with my Mom

My Mom and I have always had this rocky, sister-like relationship. I wish it were different, but as I have grown older, I have come to realize that I need to be thankful that I have a Mom. I also know that I do love my Mom, I wouldn’t wish any harm upon her. I came to realize that my Mom is being and has been the best Mom she knows how.

To be honest, the moment I accepted and realized I DO LOVE my Mom for who she is, a weight was lifted. I feel much more relaxed around my Mom. I also try my best to keep a connection with my Mom. We both lead busy lives and often misunderstand each other in communications, but I think we are working on that or at least accepting that sometimes we don’t “get” each other and that’s okay!

Respect. Love. Both will go a long way when trying to simply show someone that you DO care about them.

This weekend I spent a few hours visiting my Mom on Saturday, I knew I would be heading out Sunday to have a BBQ and visit my sis, niece and Dad so I thought Saturday would have been a perfect day to stop by and give my Mom a Mother’s Day Gift. I never expected to sit and chat for a couple of hours with her. It was, dare I say, really great!

Wisdom from My Mom RE: Blending Families

“Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net”.

I learned a bit from that conversation; such as how hard it is to try to be in a relationship or meet that special one when you have children. There are so many factors that come into play when you are divorced and trying to make a relationship with a person who isn’t the parent of the children or who brings new children to the blended family unit; IS HARD.

For the first time in my life, I was seeing what I am hurting from and struggling with, in the eyes of my Mom who has been there and tried that.

I admired my Mom for her wisdom she shared and honesty; I found myself nodding, about how difficult it is to get someone else to accept you and your kids. How difficult it is to accept another person’s child(ren) coming into the picture with you and your children. It’s no easy task trying to blend a couple divorced families into one.

I won’t go on and on about our private conversation but I will say this, I left this conversation feeling confident that “I am normal” that the issues I am dealing with right now, things I am struggling with or questioning, are completely normal!

Like my Mom said, “Dating when you are trying to raise kids is very difficult!”

You see, she didn’t mean difficult for just the parents, it’s hard for both parents to accept and learn how to parent each others children, it’s hard for the two parents to step back and come down a middle ground to parent each set of children under one roof. It’s difficult. Very very much so. That’s not to say it’s impossible. Nothing is impossible if you have love and feel love for the other person … but I found myself saying that I simply just do better raising my three children alone, obviously with the help of their father’s, but I have to have life a certain way specifically for my special needs child and that doesn’t always mesh well with someone who hasn’t raised a special needs child or isn’t that personality type that can easily adapt.

Life is hard. Thanks to my Mom for making it feel a little more at ease this weekend. While I am still in a position in my life where I have a lot to think about, this conversation with my Mom made me realize that I actually have a lot more in common with my Mom than I had ever thought and it brought my heart/connection quite a few steps closer to her.

I Love you Mom.


Sometimes You Just Have to …. LET IT GO

So many parents live in this fear of losing their child or children. I get it. I have anxiety that I cope and fight with often. I used to fear the world as it pertained to my children. I then woke up. I realized that if I fear the world then they are going to fear the world. Now what parent wants that for their child? Not me.

I have had some awful things happen to me; how my virginity was lost or almost lost is still a blur to me, but it was a scenario that made me more aware about the fact that bad things happen to good people. I was also made aware, looking back, of how lost I was as a child and in turn wanted to parent my children in a way that never left them feeling that empty. So empty that you would be okay and accept the love of a man who was way older than you. That happened to me more often than I can recall, but I often found myself being hit on and sexualized by older men from about age 13 or maybe 12 and forward. Never was it my parents, nor any blood relative, but it was people who I did trust or thought I could trust. Let’s just keep it at that.

You see, I could live my life as a parent in fear that the same things that happened to me would happen to my own children, I don’t wish to live that way. I much prefer teaching my children to have high self esteem, to have better decision making skills and to be able to have skills in conflict resolution. I also prefer to teach my children skills on trusting their gut; that whole “good touch vs bad touch” concept they teach in schools, I discussed with my kids long before the schools addressed it. I let my kids know that if a touch makes alarms go off in their head or even a person’s character makes an alarm, sick gut feeling happen within their own self that they need to listen to that.

Instilling fear into my children wouldn’t allow them to experience the world as fully as I want them to. Sure there are bad people out there and in all honesty, some are those we entrust with our children. That was me, I was entrusted with someone or at least to be around this someone and well, sadly it worked out that shit happened. Had I been more self confident, felt more loved and whole I bet that wouldn’t have happened. Who knows though, hindsight is always 20/20.

I have raised, specifically my oldest at this point in time, that if she feels a touch hurts, is bad or is unacceptable then it may just be that. It doesn’t matter if it’s a caregiver or a family member, we do not have to ever put ourselves into a situation that we are not comfortable with. I also encourage my children to overcome their anxious feelings with new situations and to learn what is a gut feeling versus hormones or anxiety. These concepts are not easy to teach through words, you have to lead by example when it comes to the kids.

I live my life free spirited, confident and happy. I live this way because I know I am giving my children a good role model to look up to. Note: I never said perfect role model. I prefer to be a real life human role model that leads her life for complete happiness within. I can only hope and pray these lessons are taught to my children through my example.

I think parenting is difficult, it isn’t easy to let go, knowing that there are so many harmful people in this world, believe me, I am aware of just how harmful people can be. I went through a lot that no family member knows about, because I didn’t have anyone to turn to back then, but as an adult, I have forgiven and moved on to better myself. Harmful people can hurt others but they cannot break them forever.  I just hope my children grow up to realize that bad things may happen to them, but if they keep their heart free of bitterness and open to faith and love then they can overcome any bad that happens to them, so as long as they want to move forward.

Jenny the Pug – Love her Like a Child

I never thought I could love a pet as much as I love my sweet Pug. I always wanted to have a pug and a few years ago I was able to adopt this sweet Jenny the Pug. Jenny was five years old then and is now about to turn eight this April.

Raising a Pug is so Much Fun

Jenny has such a big personality and we often call her Diva Dog. I love how Jenny has figured out that her human Mama has a memory issue. You see, my kids learned a long time ago I am extremely forgetful, I can blame it on being older or having Mommy brain, whatever the reason I can forget what i ate this morning, nevermind what I fed my kids last night. Jenny the Pug likes to take full advantage of this and is found begging for food as if I forgot to feed her breakfast or dinner. It drives me crazy because the family will remind me “yes you fed her” but Jenny makes me second guess myself.

Jenny the Pug is Family Moms Vaction Land (3)

My children adore Jenny. With my middle child, who is not shown in pictures today, he uses Jenny the Pug as a way to help him relax down to sleep. Petting Jenny until he falls asleep is part of his normal bedtime routine while I sing lullabies and read books to my youngest son (shown in image above to the right). Everyone loves Jenny, the kids refer to themselves as “brother” and “sissy” to our dog, it just goes to show that a dog can truly be like one of your children!

Jenny the Pug is Family Moms Vaction Land (1)

Jenny is our only pet, we had a cat but he sadly was hit by a vehicle and died. That was so sad because we couldn’t keep this particular cat inside, but now we have this orange kitty shown above. I don’t know who owns this orange kitty, if anyone, but he/she is very well groomed and plump as ever so I know he/she must have a home or at least someone is taking care of him/her. This kitty would be a cute addition, we could essentially have a Milo & Otis, right?!

What pet(s) do you have, if any? If none, what is one pet you hope to have some day?

Rebuilding a Bond with a Family Member

I am an avid supporter of rebuilding bonds with family members. I am the daughter of a woman who gave birth to me as a teenager. At the age of 15 my mother was thrown into growing up fast so she could raise me, then four years later she gave birth to my sister. I cannot even begin to imagine how that felt, to become a mother to a child when you are a child yourself. That thought is honestly what kept me from becoming a teen mother as well, but that’s not the topic of today’s blog post.

My mother and I haven’t ever been super close, I know she cares about me and loves me. I know that she is and forever will be my only mother. I love her and care about her deeply. Those facts are not something that is negotiable, they are there and true. What also is true is that my mother and I have been disconnected for many years, I am not sure when it started or why but since becoming who I am today, I realize that I don’t care to know the why we never seemed to connect as a mother/daughter but prefer to focus more on working to move forward.

The type of mother/daughter bond I yearn for won’t exist between my mother and I. My mother and I are two different people with few similarities between us, the one thing we have to go on really is the love that we have for each other. I know that my Mom doesn’t always understand why I make the decisions I make and I am sure she has thought or thinks from time to time that I make some awful decisions. With that being said, I believe that I learn from the decisions I make and each day I grow stronger and better as an individual. I want nothing more than to have my Mom support me and love me for who I am, not wish for me to be or do something else

For a little over a year, I rented my Mom’s home. Basically I paid her mortgage and was able to live at the home I grew up in while she lived in another town with her husband. Living in that home brought back a lot of challenging memories for me, we have all been through a lot in that home and it was sometimes very difficult to live in that house during the time I rented it. There was something positive that came from renting that home for a little over a year, I felt like I was forced to speak with my Mom more and she was forced to speak to me more. You see, we both have busy lives and don’t seem to reach out to each other the way I feel a mother and daughter should.

I firmly believe that my Mom and I have grown closer in the past couple of years, I accept who she is and am happy that she is happy. My Mom seems to accept who I am and tries her best to show me that she’s happy that I am happy. My Mom has also worked better at talking to my children and engaging with them a bit more than I felt she ever did before. I notice a smile on my Mom’s face more often than not these days and I know I can text or call my Mom to talk about near anything. While I am still slightly guarded because I felt very hurt over the years and confused about the relationship I had with my Mom, I am trying my best to reach out to my Mom and be a part of her new married life.

I am that person who always tries to tell people, life is too short to not speak to a parent or loved one. I could never go years without speaking to my Mom, even though our relationship is still being built on, and there are days I feel hurt that she didn’t call me to see how my week went, I know that my Mom loves me the best she can. For me, as a 32 year old adult, that is enough for me. Just knowing that my Mom does love me the best she knows how and she does try to reach out more often than in the past, means the world to me.

I can only hope that my Mom knows just how much I do love her, even if, on occasion, we have a hard time showing each other that love.


Everyone Parents the Best they Can – Celebrate That Love

I think of the Same Love song by that band Macklemore when I think of how competitive and judgmental parenting has become. Formula feed and you are the worse parent in the world. Breastfeed and you are the best. Co-sleep and you are a horrible parent risking your child’s death. Put your child in a crib and well you are putting them at a risk for SIDS. Is there not a thing a parent can do that is right these days? Parents live in this fear of what they should put out there because too many people judge and are “better than” the other parent. This is insane people. What happened to neighbors helping neighbors, parents supporting parents? No wonder so may parents are feeling so depressed because they are judged for their every move. Our country has become more about “who’s better than who” than just “co exist and respect each other as individuals”.

"Image courtesy of photostock / FreeDigitalPhotos.net".

“Image courtesy of photostock / FreeDigitalPhotos.net”.

Every parent has the Same Love for their child. Who cares if someone chooses to co-sleep, formula feed, give their kids food choices you don’t agree with – those are their children, not yours, deal with it. I am all for each parent educating other parents on rights versus wrongs. Educating on why some foods are truly not good for people or children. Share your personal opinions backed with facts and the other side could share their opinions backed by their own facts. It’s really as simple as; there is a truth behind every opinion you can share to defy what you are saying. When another parent is flat out putting their child in harms way, neglecting the, abusing them either emotionally or physically – okay step in.

If a child is happy. The parents are happy. Then why be such a meanie about it? I say kids are the meanest in this world to each other but lately I see adults acting just as mean to each other. It’s almost as though we have done lost our minds. Case in point; I have been an on and off again cigarette smoker for many years. I never smoke a cigarette in the home my children reside in. I have not smoked cigarettes in the vehicle with my children. These are healthy choices I have made for my children, who shouldn’t have to have lungs filled with crap just because I have an addiction I keep going back and forth with. With that being said, I try my best not to pass judgement on parents who do choose to smoke in households and cars with their own children. It’s not healthy but those are not my children. I am not the boss of other parents.

When my children ask me why other parents do things that I do not do, I simple say ” every parent is different. I choose to do or not do certain things while others will do those things and it’s okay because that is their life and their family. It’s not my job to judge nor tell others what to do with their children or life”. By having that mindset it has taught my children to judge less and accept more.

I think that as parents we all need to come together and celebrate the fact that we all have the Same Love for our children. That is what this world needs more of; love. So why  not pat a parent on the back today and tell them you are happy that they are doing a great job, after all every parent does the best they know how and just hope something clicks with their children so that the children grow up to do their best as well!

Suck it Up and Grow Up – it’s Really That Simple

I had this vision in my head of what I would be as a co-parent to another person’s child. How I would handle being that “other parent” figure in their life. All of those visions appeared to be with little conflict and two mothers working together in a sense for the positive well being of their child. The issue is that I have been told on more than one occasion that I have a rare personality type. My co-parents and I get along fine. We don’t always agree, heck sometimes we probably don’t like each other but we do not ever allow our children to bear witness to that.

"Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net".

“Image courtesy of Stuart Miles / FreeDigitalPhotos.net”.

One of the biggest things that New Hampshire stresses, being that they are a PRO FAMILY state, is to work together. Overcome the reasons you are not together. Get over it. See for me, I was cheated on and well even to this day this particular ex swears he never cheated, I had proof and the girl he cheated with even spoke with me kindly about it. It took me a couple years to fully get over it but never did I place our daughter in the middle of my own personal feelings. Granted, there were situations I could have handled better but our daughter was never placed in the middle whereas I would threaten her to not see her Dad over my own personal issues with our break up over ten years ago.

Happy Parents, whether together or apart, make happy children. Every. Single. Time.

Thankfully with my ex husband and I there really wasn’t a huge drama fest. Neither of us cheated. Neither of us did anything wrong to each other. All too often its’ difficult to explain why we got divorced other than that we are great friends but two people who when living together and actually trying to have a relationship – don’t work. This makes co-parenting our boys super easy usually because we have a respect for each other. There is no drama and if he wants to take the boys extra so be it. It’s all about giving and taking.

I figured that when I met another man that he would have some established relationship with his ex, to the point that we all could get along and be civil. I would do what most co-parenting sites advise you to do; introduce yourself to the Mom of the children and talk kindly. Eliminate that motherly threat some feel about you taking “their spot” in their child’s life. That isn’t what moving on is about. Co-parenting isn’t about being competitive, who is better than the other.

I get that we are wired to be so damn competitive, but give it up when it comes to the kids. You don’t like your ex, they don’t like you. Who gives a crap. You had a child together so to me it’s pretty simple, grow up, suck it up and work together to compromise. The issue is that some parents just want that meal ticket a child provides to them, I have seen this very often. All too often. What’s even more sad is when the child doesn’t see it, at least right away. One thing that NH pushes in their Child Impact Seminar is that “you are not to put your ex down to your child, that is THEIR parent and THEY LOVE THEM. They have a right to LOVE both parents. If that other parent has a true flaw that screws with the children, those children will eventually see their own truth behind who their parents are.” The sad thing is that this can take well into adulthood before a child realizes what kind of parent they had.

When it comes to co-parenting on one is “right” except the children who need to be given a chance to grow as CHILDREN

All you can do is co-parent to the best of your abilities and stay positive because without that, what do you have? Working with a hostile, bitter, unhappy co-parent isn’t easy, but then again neither is parenting. So do your best to ensure that you are abiding by what you feel to be morally correct and move forward. Eventually the path will lead in the best-for-the-kids direction! Thank God my children do not have to deal with drama, for one – my body cannot handle drama, I literally get sick to my stomach with pains and can’t function properly and for two when co-parenting is a positive experience the children benefit fully from both parents and step parents in each household.

Spread the love, not the hate. Show your children what it means to be a respectful adult, so that they can grow up to be respectful adults too!