Thanks-Giving-Giving-Thanks 

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Thanks-Giving-Giving-Thanks 

It’s been a stressful week. Busy shopping week means busy work week with my writing job. (And the work schedule is not very conducive to Adri’s school schedule anyway). Then peak-order season with the gift shop (Which I’m definitely not complaining about…I just wish I’d have had more time to add some new items to the shop before now). And with a million other things to do around the house, to say I’m frazzled would be putting it mildly. Time always goes so fast and there’s never enough of it to do what you want.

Today was Adri’s Thanksgiving “feast” at school. And even though she was late (because of a mixup over when I should bring her since it wasn’t one of her regular school days), she made it – and with her pineapple contribution in tow. So there’s that at least.

But after having to go back home and work more before going back to the school for the feast, I had barely enough time to put myself together and definitely not enough time to shower first. I broke a bra and broke a nail in my haste…And I was still a few minutes late.

She didn’t mind though. She was excited to see me and have me try the fruit salad and buttered rolls they made this morning. (And it was yummy).

After eating and playing for a bit I had hope return thinking I could salvage some of the plans after all. The morning may have been a disaster but we could still make her teachers a nice, crafty, thank-you gift tonight to give them tomorrow at school…Until I was reminded when we were leaving that Adri doesn’t have school again until next week.

Defeated, I sighed when we got into the car to leave school and head to the grocery and said, “I’m sorry, monkey. I wish I could’ve been there for your whole day at school again like Halloween and that we weren’t always so rushed, but Mommy is just a bit of a mess lately”. Without hesitation she replied, “It’s okay mommy. We all have messes sometimes. I love you and your da best mommy”.

I could’ve broke down, but God knows if I did right now it might not stop. Sometimes I’m not really sure what I’m doing; Feeling pulled in a million directions and I think I’m doing everything wrong. But it’s little reassurances like that that tell me I must be doing something right.

I may have plenty of other things in mind that I want to do, but sometimes there’s just not enough time. And I have to remember that that’s ok. That my house work may get a little behind (or a lot) when I’m working two jobs and momming. And that sometimes our dinner won’t be completely homemade…or even semi-homemade for that matter. And that’s ok.

The important thing is that we are laughing together in our slightly (or extremely) messy house. That we are together enjoying our homemade, semi-homemade or not-at-all-homemade dinners together, that we’re always there for her when she needs us, and that her daddy and I love her bigger than the sky. Through grief, through chaos, through it all. That’s what it’s all about.

…And just to keep me from being too wishy-washy all day, she was a total ass in the grocery store afterward, So I guess it’s also about balance. 😜

But I am so thankful for the blessings in life (even the ones that don’t always seem like blessings at first). I appreciate the crazy, busy weeks. And I am so grateful for my family and for the love of this sweet little girl who, even at under the age of 4, understands that life can get chaotic, but it’s okay. As long as we have each other, it’s okay. And when we focus on that, it’s more than okay. It’s great. Chaotic, messy, busy, hopeful, fun, full of love, running-late, great. And if we can’t get all of that greatness to fit into one day, we’ll be hopeful, grateful, and blessed to be given tomorrow to give it another shot.

So in case I don’t get a chance to say it later this week when things are even more chaotic:  Happy Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope your blessings are more than you can count…But I hope you’ll take a minute to stop and try to count them anyway.

 

❤ #grateful #thankful #blessed❤

Thankful Grateful Blessed

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Lest We Forget

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I haven’t been able to watch the news much this week because it’s a little heartbreaking watching people act out in such a way – from both sides. And today all I can think is what it feels like to be a Veteran seeing these images of burning flags by your own people. What a shame.

While this country is torn and seemingly losing it’s f%@#ing minds, burning flags and terrorizing people and towns, let’s stop and remember what that flag actually stands for…What today actually stands for. It’s meaning goes way beyond who our president is (or isn’t). It is every one of us and all the lives risked (and lost) protecting it.

So before you go supporting any type of violent action against any other human or against that flag, think long and hard about the freedoms you have because of it and those that serve and protect it;

Before you go posting about fleeing this country all because of an election;

Before you go pretending that you and your views are any more important than anyone else’s in this country;

Before you go a moment further being ungrateful for all you have because you are too focused on what you don’t have,

Stop and remember all of those who died and who risk their lives every day protecting our freedoms;

Protecting our rights to protest;

Protecting our rights to vote and be heard;

Protecting us.

US.

U.S.

We may not all agree on anything when it comes to politics. We may not agree on the need for war at all. But without these brave men and women fighting these wars, you wouldn’t even be able to protest. So I think we should at least all be able to agree that a tremendous thank you is in order (and an “I’m sorry” wouldn’t hurt either).

This month being the month of gratitude and this day being a day of remembrance, let me just say that I am thankful for my hard-working “uneducated white male” husband, my raging lesbian sister, and my many other friends and family who come from so many different (some completely opposite) walks of life and political and religious beliefs but are some of the best people in this world because they remind me every day that in this “land of the free”, even at our ugliest, we can still coexist and love one another despite our differences. I wish the rest of the country could do the same.

And last but certainly not least, I am extremely grateful to all of our veterans past and present and everyone of our servicemen and women for the work they do protecting our freedoms…Even if we use them to act like “spoiled brats” or “deplorables” sometimes.😉

Thank you.

Thank you to all of our brave men and women serving this country. I am sorry that we act so despicable sometimes and make you feel that we don’t value what you do for us. We owe you everything….Or at least so much more.

#LestWeForget
#NeverForget
#ForeverGrateful
#GodBlessAmerica
#SupportOurTroops

#LandOfTheFreeBecauseOfTheBrave

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Into The Forest 

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Into the forest I go; to lose my mind and find my soul

I’ve got lots of favorite quotes about nature but when my mind and heart are heavy I wander around the garden or stare at the sky for a while and am always reminded of this one. It’s so fitting. Sometimes you just need to escape your thoughts and worries and just vibe with the planet to try to gain peace and clarity.

My mind is full of worry this week and there are so many I know going through difficult times right now too. So many prayer requests recently and so many more unspoken.

But I believe there is power in numbers. So whatever you believe in, could you just take a minute to send out some positive thoughts and energy? If some float my way too I sure won’t complain, but right now I just hope they can help bring healing, comfort and peace to those I know who need it.

And to that end I leave you with another loved quote –

The wound is the place where the light enters you”.

I hope whatever pain and difficulties you are facing now bring you to peace and happiness tomorrow. And may you be a beacon to someone else in their time of need.

💜

  

Savor Even The Worst Days

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Timehop reminded me that on this day last year we received the good news that we were having another baby. If only that excitement could have lasted.

There’s no denying the sting that hits me every time it comes up (or like when I get emails from companies I could’ve sworn I unsubscribed from reminding me when I was due or that my baby should be ten weeks old, etc., etc). But that sting is just a reminder that it was real. That there was real joy there. Real love. Love that I am realizing will never fade no matter how much time passes.

There’s no way around it nor do I have any desire to pretend it didn’t happen. I don’t think there will ever be a day that I am free from thought of it…And that part I’m okay with; Because it was a blessing and an exciting few months while it lasted and, just like with Adriana, I savored Every. Single. Moment.

I was honored to carry that life even if it was only for a short time. It kills me when I hear people complaining about their child(ren) or their pregnancy because, even though they have every right to feel like crap or have bad days, and it’s totally understandable, I still would give anything to be experiencing it all – pains, discomforts, sleepless nights, and all.

So savor every moment – Even the worst days. Enjoy every beautiful, aggravating minute of parenting. Every day of morning sickness or those “pregnancy-blah” feelings. Remind yourself just how blessed you are to have those bad days every now and then that are surrounded by all the good ones.

And rest in peace to that sweet little soul that left too soon. ❤️

No Longer (Farewell to 2015)

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In an empty field I find myself

Mowed of its bounty overgrown;
Now barren and empty-

It’s deepest secrets exposed.
 
And in the crisp approaching winter’s breeze,

I smell the earth and the dying leaves.
The decaying year soon coming to close

As too perhaps my eyes on their sorrows.
 
Another year approaching, a beginning anew;

The fog is lifting and once again I can see;

Still conscious that it’s without you.
 
My world turned cold the day you left

And it’s been winter ever since; 

Searching for what couldn’t be. 

Wishing for you to return to me.
 
I’m fine, I’m fine. I’m not alright.

The days pass by and turn to night. 

Flashes of me here and there,

Hiding behind a shaky stare.
 
I don’t want to numb it 

But I can’t let it out;

I can’t get rid of it 

And I don’t want to be without.
 
Never the same;

Forever changed.
 
Coming to life amidst the rubble 

And then crumbling back down;

How can I feel so alien in my world 

And yet still smile while inside I frown?
 
I feel like I’m now two people – 

One me and one that’s broken;

One that smiles and laughs and jokes 

And an even more fragile one awoken.
 
Something was taken from me, but yet will never leave. 

Things don’t make sense, but make sense perfectly.
 
The depth of my emotions magnified -

Whether in spite of or because of it, I don’t know. 

Staring out – it’s the same window, the same world,
Completely different though.
 
Life goes on and people buzz along, 

Unknowing, uncaring, unchanged.

And I try to absorb their indifference
-
Unaffected, unbroken, mundane.
 
There should be another place setting

Another stocking by the fire;

There should be a happier ending to this year

And not just an aching, fruitless desire.
 
I may never return from the dark,

It seems now the dark is part of me; 

I may never try again

For fear it will consume me entirely.
 
But still I can feel the spring in my veins
Reminding me to live once again.

Seeing an island while I was lost at sea. 

Bits of myself returning to me.
 
The new year approaches and brings a promise:
That although broken, I can go on;

That I can laugh, and smile, and sing 

Even though you’re gone.
 
That although I cry I can still be joyful
And my joy does not need to be obscured;
That just because you are no longer
Doesn’t mean you never were.
                                                                                                       -Stephanie Rader, The Write Side of Life
2015 has been a difficult year though it was still filled with many blessings and joyful moments for which I am incredibly grateful. Things may never be “the same” again but I suppose those changes build who we are – Even if sometimes those building blocks are just the broken pieces of ourselves. Still, I hope that 2016 is a bit more kind to us all.
Happy New Year❤

Gratitude & Grief 

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I am reading poetry in front of a warm, crackling fire. My sweet (though slightly sick) babygirl is nestled beside me and our furbabies are cuddled up snoozing beside her. There is music flowing through the house and my husband is in his chair nearby enjoying a glass of bourbon with a full belly after a wonderful home-cooked meal. Everyone is comfortable and my loved ones are all safe… There may be a million things going wrong, but in today’s tumultuous times these are the simplest and the greatest blessings to be thankful for. As full of gratitude as it may be, my heart aches and wishes for healing to come to this planet. 
#PrayingForParis

#PrayingForHumanity 

#PrayingForPeace 

Praying for Peace & Healing

Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness

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Today is Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Day. Sharing my story let me know I was not alone in our loss. The road to healing is a long one. In fact, I’m not sure it ever ends. Day by day I remind myself to focus on the positive things though that emptiness and sadness still linger – Always ready for me to break down into tears; Always reminding me of what never was. It makes what I have that much more important. That much more sacred. But it does not erase that reminder of what was lost. These situations are much more common than you know. If you’ve lost a child don’t be afraid to reach out. You are not alone in this. And may the many angels lost rest in peace.

 

The Write Side of Life - Lost Child Monument

The Write Side of Life - I wanted that child

The Write Side of Life - Ask My Mom How She Is

The Write Side of Life - 10 Stages of Mother who has lost a child

The Frenchman

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“The hard part isn’t the first step, or the second step [on the way towards your goal]. It’s the 5th, 6th and 7th steps when you’re in so deep you forget why you took that initial step in the first place. The middle of the tunnel, when you left the light behind you but you can’t yet see it in front of you either. When you have to trust that whatever ‘insane’ notion came over you to take the first step is still worth it now that you don’t see where it’s headed anymore. That’s the hard part of doing something big/great. It’s when you’re halfway up the mountain and you’re too far up to turn back but you can’t see the summit camp yet.” 

The Frenchman

Transform

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I don’t pretend to know it all and I don’t expect anyone to agree with me about everything but I do know that when it comes to life, I refuse to let my mind be filled with negativity or focus on petty, insignificant things simply because things like this right here exist in the world…Because even if I am in the middle of a hard time, all around us the beauty and magic of this planet still scream to be noticed…Because to see something like this happen proves there is a god; And if there is a god then there must be hope; And as long as there is hope I can have faith that everything will be okay.

Transformed by The Write Side Of Life

Take a minute today to just soak in a bit of the beauty around you. Channel out the noise and negativity for a moment and realize just how very blessed we are to be here. And if you are going through struggles, don’t let them break you – Let them transform you. ❤️

Transformations by The Write Side Of Life

 

Feel free to share a picture of your happy place and the beauty you notice today!