Tuesday, 8 April 2014


I have come here tonight in a exhausted, lump of a person. I am struggling. I feel gutted and raw. I am lonely. As usual, I will wear my heart on my sleeve and be vulnerable, here, where I am free to be me. Send my thoughts into the abyss. I honestly don't really even care if anyone reads it. I write for me. I write for the other mommy out there who is also waging her own war, in her own way.  I write because I feel better, and maybe, someone else will too. They won't feel alone as they read my words. I won't feel alone knowing they were heard.
Those closest to me, friends and family are aware of a secret that I have been keeping. I have not publicly acknowledged it until now, and I'm not really sure how I feel about exposing it tonight either. My heart just needs a voice tonight. 
Last fall, my husband and I separated. We have been through more in almost 11 years, than many couple go through in a lifetime. We have struggled. We have survived. We have been triumphant.....we have failed. We are lost. We are damaged. It is painful. It is raw. 
Many people have been asking if we are going to get through this. Many days, I am strong in the belief that we can over come. Some days, I question if we can. I am often confused as to how I feel, what I need, and how to even begin to repair the years of damage that has been done. It has not been an easy road. It has been a road full of love for each other, masked in angry words, hurtful actions, and a tremendous amount of neglect, on both parts. I have been so consumed by motherhood, and the loss of myself that I stopped seeing him. I stopped listening to him. I stopped being his biggest support. I failed my vows. I failed my marriage. I failed. 
As this journey has progressed, I have found strength in myself in places I never had imagined. Strength is important, but you can only be strong for so long. I hit my wall today. I am emotionally exhausted. I am lonely beyond belief. I long for a place to rest, but tonight I was reminded, that I am alone in this journey. I am alone. I wake up alone, I go to bed alone, I get through the day.....alone. Every day. I am sad. Sometimes I'm angry. Sometimes I take the blame. Sometimes I lay all the blame on him. Tonight I ran through our past. Our struggles. Tonight I cried. I cried for all the empty promises, the wasted time, and the feelings that were brushed under the rug. I cried over the neglect. 
I am struggling tonight. I am struggling to stay on track with my eating. I am struggling to get all the jobs done around the house. I am struggling with my self worth. I am struggling with fear. I am struggling with anger over how we ended up here. I am struggling.......It is real. It is raw. It is vulnerable. It is terrifying. 
I worry that I will never be enough. For him, or anyone else. When all the cards are on the table, am I enough? Are my insecurities too big? Is my anxiety too much to take on? Am I too demanding....too selfish....too spoiled...too emotional......too broken. Too broken? Am I too broken to be worth the time....
At the end of this road, full of pain and struggle, broken dreams, and broken hearts, I wonder what healing looks like. I wonder how much hurt lies ahead. I wonder when all this is said and done, who will I be. 
This is my heart, open and raw. Honest and unapologetic. This is my soul. It may not be pretty, but it's real. I will never be perfect, but I will be honest. Genuine. Terrified. Gutted.

Thursday, 20 March 2014

and she's one....

One year ago today, in a very rapid and scary 1 hr 42 minutes, my sweet girl arrived and changed our world forever. She has taught me more in the last year than I ever thought possible. She lives everyday the same way she arrived....like a bull in a china shop. She is such a ray of sunshine and joy. I can not believe how much I love watching my big two with her. She has brought so much laughter into our home. She is so damn funny. She is loud, and boisterous, shouty and pushy. We love it.

The first few months with her took such a toll on me. I wish I could go back and tell the exhausted me, that it was all going to be ok, and worth it. I think it's hard to imagine, when you are going through hard times in your life, to believe that it is going to all work out. This too shall pass. You will survive. It's all true. I am sad that I didn't get to revel in the newborn glory, and feel robbed. I'm heartbroken that it has gone WAY TOO FAST. I wasn't prepared for the months to fly by, in a rapid blink of an eye, to be staring down her first birthday already seems unimaginable. I will admit that if I was in a different situation...I would totally do it all again (eeeek...I said it) She is like baby crack! I've said it before, but the baby stages are my favorite moments of my entire life. Yes, I am sleep deprived, time crunched, and a walking disaster....and I would pause these moments in a heart beat. Stop time. Squeeze out every single last drop of baby-hood before it slips away into the abyss. I am so grateful for the gifts I have been given. Blessed doesn't seem like enough words. 

One year. 365 days. I have no idea where on earth it went. How it slipped away? What exactly did I do with it? Did I write down enough? Take enough photos? Stop and play enough? Sing enough? Snuggle enough? Because now it's gone, and we are moving on to the next phase of life with a toddler. I'm so thankful that my big two are so well behaved and eager to help me wrangler her. She is a full time job. She is a wild animal. She hollers at the top of her lungs. She stomps her little feet. She pushes her sister off of chairs, and out of her way. She tries to play in the toilet. She opens, climbs in, and turns on the dishwasher. Relentlessly. She climb into the fridge before you can stop her. She runs. She has no fear. She is A LOT of work. She is pure joy and love. She has my heart wrapped around her noisy little finger. 

The last year has taught me so many lessons. I began drinking coffee at 34.  It has solely been responsible for helping me to survive. I learned that one mommy to 3 children is REALLY not enough mommy. One mommy, an 8 year old and a five year old is barely enough to wrangle "Shouty McGavin". 
Small hands have a long reaching ability. Whether it's the fridge, big sisters "forbidden" drawers, desk, remotes or counter, those little hands can reach more than you ever anticipated. 
Anything electronic is fun. If she can get her hands on remotes, phones, the computer mouse or  anything from the wii.....she runs away with her tiny hands clasped around it with the speed of a cheetah. 
You'd like to go to the bathroom? Not without someone banging on the door and shouting at the top of her lungs. If you're brave enough to let her in, be prepared to have go-go gadget arms to prevent the digging in the trash, smashing the scale, unrolling the toilet paper, pulling down the shower curtain, eating the soap or stealing the shampoo bottles. It happens in 30 seconds. 
Stairs are not scary? I can't decide if she is lacking depth perception or fear. She has not only scaled our entire flight of stairs in seconds, before I saw her, but she will walk right off of them with out fear. That's hardly terrifying as a mother. Baby gate was installed immediately.
You'd like to sleep? No thank you. None for me. Some nights are amazing with only one or two wake ups. We mostly are up an average of 3-5 however.....still. Hence the coffee.
The best way to signal that you are finished eating is to use your entire arm to clear the piles of remaining food onto the floor. Do not use the sign "all done", although you are very capable of using it. Best to just make a mess. 
If all else fails, and you are still not getting your way, shout at the top of your lungs, and stomp your feet. It won't work, but it makes everyone laugh around you. Causing you to then laugh, making everything better.

Today I am so thankful for a healthy baby girl. She keeps me on my toes, and makes me smile countless times a day. She is so loved by us that there is not enough words to explain the depth of my joy. So now we look forward to the next phase of life, that will bring me a toddler and say goodbye to my baby. My heart is sad, full, happy, and aches all at the same time. I think I will always have "the ache". I'm that kind of woman. I think there will never be a day that I don't honestly say "I could do that again". I am grateful for what I have been given. I am just a mommy. I don't love my children any less than any other mommy out there. I am no different. I just think as I watch my last baby grow right before my eyes, I pause with reflection. I look back at the last 8 years of mother hood. Some days I miss me. Some days are really hard. Some days I watch the clock and count the hours down to bedtime. But often I ache, as I watch my beautiful children grow right before my eyes into beautiful people. Today as I celebrate my baby girls first birthday, I will reflect on the year past. I will make promises for the future. I will probably cry. Today I will hold her tight and be grateful. Don't ever forget to do the same. 

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Bringing up baby

Holy hell! I knew that I was dropping the ball on the blogging world since welcoming baby, but this is ridiculous.  I read somewhere that most blogs are abandoned after 180 days...guilty? I must admit that I have not been short on topics to write about in the last 10 months, but finding the time to sit and write is next to impossible. They usually pop into my brain in the grocery isle, as I'm fighting to keep a very mobile baby in the cart, wrangling the two big ones, and struggling to remember exactly what was on the list I left sitting on the kitchen counter. Time is my biggest struggle right now more than ever before. Let's face it, I wasn't doing so well before baby. I find myself clinging by a thread to the bottom of a very tattered list, and realize that by dangling without balance, I am failing. I recently went into emergency due to chest pains.....turns out I am so stressed that it presented itself as symptoms of heart attack. That's a problem. Not to mention that I am STILL fighting a weight battle that is kicking my ass. Time. Time. Time....if you fail to plan you plan to fail...but you need TIME to plan. TIME to put yourself on the list.
Motherhood is hard. No one really gets it, until you're knee deep in children, school lunches, permission slips, laundry, grocery shopping, house cleaning and cooking dinner......and if you're a working mom, that's an entire other issue all together. Don't get me wrong, I wouldn't trade it for ANYTHING in the entire universe. I LOVE being a mommy, but I think I'm not alone when I admit that this shit is HARD.

I was blessed with a very "spirited" baby girl this time around. She is walking at 10 months, she is into EVERYTHING, she is high maintenance, she is demanding, she does not sleep, she is a pain in the ass to nurse, and she climbs in the fridge, the dishwasher and into every single cupboard she can. She is also damn cute, funny, adorable and full of joy. I can not imagine my existence without her. She is A LOT of work.....and it was my turn. Fine. I accept that. I had a really easy ride before this. I was due. For the first time in motherhood, I am forced to admit that I might need some serious help. Since babe started walking, she is KICKING MY ASS. I chase her all day long. It is impossible to keep up on the things I need to accomplish for the house to function, and run a business. All the while excessively sleep deprived. Did I mention she DOES NOT SLEEP? I am slowly dying inside. Honestly....dying. I see all these Pinterest and Instagrams of these fit moms....and I die inside a little bit more. I want to WANT to go the gym, sooooo badly. I am so beyond exhausted, that I fear if I use the small amount of energy I have on reserve, it will literally kill me. Yes people, I am THAT tired. It happens.

The last 10 months have been filled with so many highs and so many lows. I never in my life dreamed that I would get the baby that screamed for 5-6 hours straight as a newborn. After having the worst pregnancy of my life, I had dreams of newborn snuggles and fresh baby love. Instead I was alone while my husband worked away for 5 weeks. The screaming didn't start to lessen until around the 2.5 month mark. It was HELL. I mean literal, unbearable hell. I have never experienced that in my life, and would not wish that on anyone. I missed all the blessed newborn joy....it was replaced with screams. Hers and mine. Some days I would just scream. Just stand in the bathroom and pull my hair and scream and cry. I was alone. It was horrible. After I removed all the wheat, dairy, gluten and soy from my diet it became better. She started to blossom. One can only afford to eat that way for so long however, and once I fell off the wagon, it was like a dam broke loose. Food became my survival AGAIN.

After summer, I sent off my big girl to Kindergarten and my boy to grade 3 (it goes by much too quickly) and I finally started to get some balance in the fall. By Oct I was figuring it out! Kids at school meant I could hit the gym and put baby in the child minding which meant I had some TIME for ME! The weight started to come off, and I felt like I was gaining some control back in my life. Then mid Oct my boy got the chicken pox....then the girls got the chicken pox. Then my boy got the stomach flu....then I got the stomach flu. Then the girls got head colds. Then Christmas came and my business took off like a vengence.....Then New Years came....Then baby started walking and sleeping less.....do you see a pattern here? Shit. Is. HARD. I took myself off the list again. It's easy to do.

So the moral of the story is this.  Motherhood is beyond joyful, painful, difficult, easy, happy, sad, draining, uplifting, and worth every single moment of struggle. It is the greatest gift you will ever experience. It is the best job in the world, but sometimes we have to step back and look at it from another angle. Sometimes it means calling your mother in law and giving up the kids for an entire Sunday so you can FINALLY get caught up in the house work and just have salad for dinner while you watch grown up shows and eat in the living room. On those days, you may need to blast the music in your minivan that isn't from a Disney soundtrack, and you may treat yourself to the elusive Starbucks coffee while you shop Target without being forced to visit the toy section. But you most likely will anyways, because even though you desperately wanted to get as far away from your children as you possibly could, you can't help but think of them and plan for the next birthday party, or easter basket, or valentines day surprise.  Some days it goes too fast. Some days it can't go fast enough. But no matter what speed, it just goes away. They grow up before you blink. So tomorrow I will attempt yet again to get to the gym. I will try to find balance. I will try to put myself on the list. I may suck at it. But at least I'm trying.

Thursday, 30 May 2013

It's a GIRL!

So after what felt like an eternal pregnancy, Flynn Allyn Edi-Mae arrived on March 20, 2013 at a hefty 8 pounds 10 oz and 23 inches long! Unfortunately due to hubby's work schedule, he missed her birth and was unable to get home until she was 12 hours old. 
Given the fact that I was terrified to give birth again, I'm pretty sure that my body was mentally preparing for what turned out to be the most traumatic delivery yet. I think that every woman has their own version of horror birth stories, and by no means do I think mine was worse than anybody else's, but it for me, it was the worst of the three. Not only was she bigger than the other two, but she was insanely fast. Now to some this is wonderful....until you do it. There is no wind up to the pain with a fast arrival. There is no chance to even get your bearing's and mentally prepare yourself. It is painful and terrifying. Especially with the third, because I knew damn well what was happening and how fast she was coming. 
However, if I could have ordered the perfect delivery (minus the absence of hubby), I was given it on a silver platter. I was so exhausted near the end, that my biggest fear was an evening delivery. I was positive I wouldn't have it in me to do it....I was probably right. This time was different, in that my water didn't break. For the first time, I started contracting. I had woken up fairly early and thought to myself....hmm, this is bizarre. I felt like something was off. So I laid in bed, searching Pinterest.....
My midwife appt was the day before, on Tuesday March 19. I was 38 weeks on the button. We decided that I would book a flight for hubby to come home on Saturday, and we would try to induce labor to ensure that he would be there for her arrival. Baby had other plans. I had a temper tantrum and demanded that he come home. I booked the flight.
My mom arrived on Tuesday afternoon and my instinct was correct that I would deliver the next day. March 20 had been in my head from the beginning. I had, on more than one occasion, demanded that my hubby fly home on March 20. He clearly didn't listen....
After searching Pinterest for an hour, I had made a list in my head of all the items I was going to pick up that day, just to see if I could get things going.
Raspberry Leaf Tea
Primrose Oil...
I got earlier than I normally would on a day off. But it was Spring Break and I had lots I wanted to get done. So I ate a banana and turned on the news. At 7:03 I felt was I was sure was a contraction. But because I had been having so many braxton hicks, I logged it in my brain. At 7:06 I felt a second. Hmmm, I thought. That was weird. At 7:09 I felt my entire stomach contract rock hard. I turned to my mom and said "So I'm having contractions". Then the panic set in, I quickly went to the bathroom and became quite aware, that this was really happening. My water was slowly leaking. Ah crap.....
So I made all the important phone calls.
I think my husband was in shock. Are you sure?...it's really baby time! Panic set in with trying to get him home. Flight? Drive? He jumped in his car and started out on the long 12 hour journey home. That sucked....
I called my midwife, photographer and girlfriend Elisa. She made it to my house in record time! I would have been more impressed at the time, had I not been in unbearable pain. By 7:30, I couldn't walk through the contractions, which were now coming every 2-3 minutes and increasing in strength. Fyi....that also sucked.
I arrived at the hospital and was checked by 8:45ish. I was 4 cm.
By this time around, I was well aware of how my body works during labor. I'll be honest, it doesn't change how terrifying it is to push a person out of your body. The contractions with her were as bad as they were with my first, but this time they were intense from the beginning. I knew she wasn't moving down the birth canal. She had never even dropped as she was 13 days early. 
By the grace of God, everyone who was suppose to be there, was able to make it. I was blessed with the most amazing group of women who supported me through the entire process, and reassured me, although I was coming unhinged from the pain. That's the FUN of a fast delivery. NO time for pain meds of any kind. Thumbs up....
Although I would have loved nothing more than my husband by my side to be there to meet our daughter together, I'll be honest in saying that I am NOT sad he didn't see that situation. Hubby doesn't do well during our babes deliveries, and this one was the most traumatizing of all three. I truly didn't believe that women really "needed" to scream during child birth. After all, both my children were delivered rather calmly. I was able to talk, communicate and be in control during both of there births. I LOST MY MIND during this one. I'm so sorry I judged. Scream away ladies....scream away! Not only was I in the worst pain of my entire life, I was too aware of what was happening, or more importantly, what wasn't.  Gone was the naivety of the first baby. Nope....#3 was terrifying, and fast, and was a curve ball. I heard the midwives talking about the need for a pediatrician, I knew something was up. I also heard that there was no time, and to grab the nurses. Baby was born with meconium in my water. I found out later that there was fear they may need to resuscitate. I knew things were off when they cut her cord immediately and took her away. I just kept saying, "Don't tell me what it is!"  
I grabbed my phone instantly and called my husband.

I started asking repeatedly what we had. No one was answering. Then Elisa turned to me, with tears in her eyes and a huge smile. I just said..."it's my girl isn't it?"  We found out together, on the phone that our baby girl had finally arrived. Those moments are the best in life. Gratefully, our precious girl was healthy and hearty. She was surrounded by so much love when she was born, that I could never have wished for anything else. Elisa was amazing and so supportive. It's not everyday your friends get the joy of seeing your ladies parts all all display;) 

I am so grateful for my blessings. Never in my life, when I started this journey, did I EVER expect to be announcing my baby girl to the world. I had already been given the children of my dreams, so to be gifted another, was beyond my thinking. She has arrived in our family like she has always been here. She turned 10 weeks yesterday, and I am brought to tears by how gracious and amazing my two older ones are with her. It is a beautiful thing to watch the children you have created, fall madly in love with a person they just met. She has brought us all together as a family and forced us to put our life into perspective. I feel like we are complete. Considering how rough hubby and I started out, and the rough roads we have walked, sometimes together, sometimes apart, I look at my family and understand why you have to work on marriage. It is not something you throw away, it is something you fix and have to continue to maintain to make it last for the long haul. When all is said and done, life is about the people you fill it with. Friends, family and children. That's what makes the journey worth how hard you have to work. Nothing good has ever come from easy;)

Sunday, 23 September 2012

16...no wait, 33 and pregnant...

So in case many of you haven't noticed I have been suspiciously absent. Now that I have finally posted our big announcement on facebook, I suppose I should fill the rest of you in. We are expecting baby number three, and I have spent all of August and now September sicker than I have ever been or even thought was possible. Considering that this was a big fat ol' whoops....nature could be just a little bit nicer to me. Unless this is my own personal punishment for not using birth control. Either way, I will confess that this is AWFUL.
Although I am just entering my second trimester, I thought that I would share with you what I have learned so far about having baby number three. For those of you who are knee deep in three children, I do not need any insight into what is to come after baby arrives. The images that my brain have already put together, is quite simply enough....
The difference between my first pregnancy (an oops) and the second (also and oops) and third, (oops I did it again) is that you are smart enough to be terrified of the unknown. Childbirth is a complete mystery and you have the naivety to go through your pregnancy having no idea what to expect.
Baby two, you remember it, but are confident as a mother and your "woman power" allows you to overcome the fears, because although it hurts, you know you''ll get through it, and that it's worth it. Although you have no idea what is about to happen to your entire life when you bring that newborn home to a toddler. Up until now, you were confidant that you could handle a new baby, because you were rocking the toddler hood and had it all covered. You were super mom. Until that first week at home when your toddler is shitting on the floor, and melting down while you're trying to breast feed an over tired baby, because they kept you up all night crying and all you can do is sob because you feel like you have just destroyed your life, and haven't eaten or showered in three days because every time you try, either the baby is crying or your toddler is shoving something up their nose to get attention that they feel they're missing because you decided that you "should have another baby". Tell me I'm off base on this one?
Baby number three, I have TOO much information. NO part of me wants to push this thing out. I know what's coming regarding birthing, breast feeding, diapers, no sleep, and the general raising of another person. Can't pull the wool over my eyes. There is absolutely no possible way to convince my brain that it's going to be a breeze. I know too much.
I know that many of you know me are surprised by my admission of pregnancy. Especially when I have mentioned about a billion times that we were done. So believe me when I say that this came as a "shock" to me as well.  Well, I guess it was more of a "damn....", I'll admit. When you become a grown up, and have finished having your children, unless you are on the pill (makes me crazy...literally), or your husband has had a vasectomy (has to book off too much work because he works a labor job), the birth control options that are available, suck.  Frankly, when you have two small children, and work, and activities, and school....I suppose sex becomes much like it was as a teenager. You have to sneak around to do it. When you finally find an opportunity, neither one of you is going to sneak to "the drawer" to dig out anything. It has now become "mission impossible", and you have literally minutes to complete it.So you just hope for the best, pray your timing is right and wing it.When you're playing Russian Roulette, sometimes you lose. Ironically when I went to see my midwife she exclaimed in surprise, "I didn't think I'd ever see you in here again"! I replied "me neither". .....
One of her first questions was regarding birth control after baby. She inquired about the possibility of my hubby having a vasectomy. I'll tell you right now....he's having one. Either by a trained doctor, or by me while he's sleeping. Hell, I  might even give myself a hysterectomy with a coat hanger, either way, one of us is going to be sterile after this little adventure!
Now I know that it sounds like I'm dreading this entire process. I'm not....entirely. I will confess that I am struggling with the "excitement" factor simply because I DO NOT want to give birth again. That shit hurts, it's scary, and I have already blown out my lady parts twice before. I'm over it. Very, very over it. Not to mention the lovely aftermath that happens to your body in the weeks and months afterwards. I really have no urge to have leaky breasts, or to have to wear a "diaper pad" for weeks afterwards, while sleep deprived and weepy. Again I point out....TOO much information. 
Now for all you first time moms out there, please don't let me deter you from what is a lovely and fulfilling, amazing time in our lives. For all you second and third, and more mommies....laugh out loud. I know that as the pending arrival draws near, I will be excited about meeting this little person we have created. Mostly because I will be so damn done being pregnant that I'll no longer care about the pain, I'll probably debate ripping it out myself.  Let's be honest, this isn't my first trip around the block. 
But in all honesty, I get a little excited when I think about pulling out my babes sleepers, and newborn clothes. The thought of breast feeding makes my mommy heart scream with glee, and that newborn baby smell and cry makes my heart melt. Those first weeks at home are some of my favorite moments. With this baby, my hubby will be able to be at home for those first few precious weeks, when in the past he always had to go back to work just days after they were born. Selfishly I am thrilled to be able to send the kids off to school and get to cuddle with our newest addition and the man I am madly in love with. After all, this baby wasn't conceived in a Pinto, behind Taco Bell, with some guy I met at the bar. It was our gift of perseverance, and commitment to our marriage. By God's grace, he felt that we were worthy of another miracle. For that I am grateful. I do not care if this baby is a boy or a girl, the wait will be worth the most amazing surprise that we are granted in life. Now please don't get me wrong, I totally support those who wish to find out. We wanted a girl SO badly with Miss C, there was no way I could wait! Finding out with her was just as incredible as not finding out with Big R. Both experiences were amazing, and I wouldn't change it either way. But for me, at this point in my life, I want the drama. I'll admit it. This is the last kick at the can for me...seriously...for real this time....so I want it to be as dramatic as possible. I'm all for the families that find out the sex of the baby, get the 3D ultrasound, name it and share it all on FB. But I guess at this point in my life, I feel like the rest of my pregnancy would be like watching paint dry. Considering that I hate surprises, you'd think I'd want to know, but I KNOW it's a baby, I'm not going to birth a giraffe, so whatever it is, is just icing on the cake for me. I want our friends and family to be able to share in those first few minutes of amazing grace when we present this person to the world. I want them to be surprised as much as we will be. And besides, I have one of each already. I know it has to be one or the other?  I don't care if it's bald or has hair, blue eyes or brown, or if it gets both of our ugliest features. The vanity of childbearing has been lost on me, as the only thing I pray for is health and wellness for this child. I pray for a healthy baby with all it's fingers and toes, working healthy organs and free of illness. I pray that I will be able to use my mommy life lessons to be a calm and relaxed mommy to both baby and my other two. The greatest gift that I have been given in this life is to be a mother. I hope that I never lose my ability to laugh at the terror and struggles that come with it, because as I have said it before, at the end of this life, I will not care how much money we had or the things that we have bought. I will remember the feeling of being a mother, and watching my most precious gifts go into the world and teach the lessons that we have taught them. So as I await the pending arrival of this person, I will share my journey with you. I'm warning you now, this could get ugly, but I promise in the end it will be all worth it. 

Someday you will call a song to the wind, 
      and the wind will carry your song away.
Someday I will stand on this porch
      and watch your arms waving to me
      until I no longer see you.

Someday you will look at this house and
      wonder how something that feels so big
      can look so small.
Someday you will feel a small weight against
      your strong back.
Someday I will watch you brushing your 
      your child's hair.
Someday, a long time from now, your own
      hair will glow silver in the sun.
And when that day comes love, 
      you will remember me.
                          -Someday, by Alison Mcghee

Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Birthday's Blow....

So today's my 33rd birthday. Ugh, I would love to say that I am happy about this fact, but I will admit that my birthday has always been a source of sadness for me. This year is no exception. There have been years past that I have gotten through it with out tears, but the majority of them, I have cried. Isn't that the stupidist thing you've ever heard? I cry because it's my birthday? Stupid.  
Even as a small child, my grandmother said, as early as she can remember, I have cried. What child cries at the prospect of presents and a birthday party? Freak.  Maybe that's why I go so overboard for my kids birthdays.  Hmmm, maybe I should mention this to my therapist. 
Many years past, my bestie and my cousin threw me an amazing surprise party. In hindsight, it shows how much they loved me and wanted my day to be special. I have so much love for them, I'm embarrassed to even admit what an asshole I was. Unfortunately, the culmination of events leading up to the the party, was a perfect storm for me, emotionally.  Firstly - I hate surprises at the best of times. It makes me feel like people have been scheming behind my back. Again - Therapist? Secondly - the "love of my life" at the time had broken up with me and was dating someone else. Thirdly - I proceeded to get totally drunk at dinner before the party. Lastly -  I had a MASSIVE temper tantrum and threw my shoes......I'm horribly humiliated that I even just wrote that down for you to read.  Needless to say, this topic is still mentioned every birthday. As it should be. What a rotten thing to do to people who love you. No one has ever thrown me a surprise party since.....
As a child August 7 was always a reminder that it was only 4 weeks until school started, and I would spend those last weeks leading up to September with trepidation and anxiety of what the first few days of school would hold. My birthday always meant uncontrolled change for me as well. It meant the years were passing much faster than I had anticipated. I hate change. Are you starting to see a pattern here? Can you imagine what a mess I was as a child? Ugh, all over a birthday? But I suppose in life, each one of us has something that we keep tucked away from others. Something that makes us different, or a little eccentric. I suppose it's the parts of us that create who we are as individuals. even if it makes us weird to the outside world. 
This year however, I cried not only because it was my birthday, but because this year marks 10 years since I lost my Gran. It was 10 years ago today that I hugged her for the last time. 
I lived 2 hours away from my home town. My dad and grandparents had come to spend the day. I was in a horrible relationship. We were too young, and awful together. Gran hated him. 
She and I spent the day together, shopping and picking up canning supplies for the fruit trees in my back yard. This was the first time I would ever make jam by myself, without her. So it was a pretty big deal for her to buy me everything I needed. We went out for dinner, and it was getting late by the time my family was getting ready to go. It was extremely hard to say goodbye, and have to stay in a town I hated, with a man that I no longer wanted to be with.  I wanted to pack my bags and jump in the van with them, and go home. As we said good bye, Gran stood there, arms wrapped around my waist, head on my chest and my chin placed on top of her head. She teared up and wouldn't let go. Neither would I. No words were exchanged. She pulled back and looked into my eyes, holding back tears. We didn't have to say anything. One more lingering hug, and she headed out my door. I sobbed as I waved goodbye. As I closed the door, I said the words out loud "I don't think I'm ever going to see her again". I was right. It was one week later that I received the call that she had a massive heart attack, and didn't survive. It was one week later that my entire world as I had always known it, would come to a shattering halt. It has changed me forever. 
We all have someone in our life that moulds us into who we become, and change us forever when they leave. Whether it's a parent, a sibling, and grandparent, a friend, aunt uncle....the list goes on. We are all connected to someone that knows you, and loves you no matter what an asshole you can be. For me, this was Gran. After she passed, I had SO many people tell me how much she loved me. I was perplexed at this outpouring of affection from people. I was perplexed because I found myself  saying "ya, I know?"  It took me many years to put the reasoning for this together. People where telling me, because they thought I didn't know. I began to realize that people always say "I wish I had told them, or I wish I had said".  To this day, I have the serenity of knowing with all my soul, that there was nothing left unsaid. We all knew how much we loved each other. My family is like that. We have always said everything that we feel, because if anything ever happens......
So on a day when most people are thrilled to celebrate, and be happy. I am going to spend the day with my kids and clean my house. My husband is away working, so there will be no birthday dinner, cake or presents. I'm o.k. with that. I have everything I need right here in my home, and I want for nothing else. I will probably cry for most of the day, so don't be surprised by that. I will most likely pick up fast food for dinner, have a nap, and let my kids watch too much tv. Big R was pretty disappointed that there would be no cake. So I guess to make him happy, I'll  pick something up. I mean really, it's a shame to let the little ones down.... 
So as I settle into one more year, I have hopes for the future. If I was to make a wish today, it would be for my health. I would wish that my hubby and I could sneak away for a little vacation, just the two of us. I am so thankful for him. He is my greatest wish come true. I can say that with all my heart and soul. If you had asked me when I was a little girl, what I hoped my life would look like - it would be this. It has been a really hard road to get here, but I am so grateful for what we have. It might not be much to some, but to me, it's everything. That is the greatest gift of all.

Monday, 2 July 2012

Heart to Heart

As I approach my 33rd birthday, I have made a very difficult decision. This decision wasn't easy, nor was it joyful. It was a quiet realization that surfaced after I had some serious testing done. I am embarrassed to admit that I have let my body down. I have a family history of cholesterol and heart problems. My gran died unexpectedly, nearly 10 years ago from a massive heart attack. My dad has cholesterol so high that at times they can't even register his triglycerides. He has now been diagnosed with diabetes. This had been a very hard pill to swallow. My cholesterol is out of control. My good cholesterol is nearly void and my glucose is high. This does not fair well for me. This has been a massive eye opener. This is my opportunity to change...this is part of my journey.
I think that so often we get caught up in the vanity of our weight, instead of our health. It is quite simply, easy to ignore. We don't physically see the damage we are doing on the inside, since all you can see is the outside.  It can be easy to ignore. I am scared for the long lasting effects that this may have on my children. Just a couple of weeks ago, a young mom at our school lost her fight to cancer. Although I didn't know her personally, I was profoundly affected by her death. Her children are so young. It truly breaks my heart deeply. It scared me. It brought to the surface, the devastation and loss of my gran. That depth of loss changes you forever. I was angry at her for not taking the medication for her heart that the doctor prescribed. I still needed her...I still do.
I made a decision. No more excuses. No more lying to myself. No more taking my youth for granted. No more hiding. No more failing. No more bullshit.....
I want to live. I don't mean live, as in physically breathe. I mean LIVE! Live with passion, joy, and confidence. I have wasted so much of this life hiding. I won't run in the park with my kids because of how winded I get. I won't take them to the pool because I won't wear a bathing suit. I dream of going to Mexico with my husband, but am too embarrassed of my weight to go. What would I even wear? I'd have to go to the beach....you can't wear sweaters in Mexico. Most importantly though, I have allowed my children to eat foods that I have NEVER allowed before. Simply to feed my own addiction. That has made me the saddest of all. 
So a couple of weeks ago, as I was receiving my test results, I also had a good friend of mine, Crystal from Level 6 Images, take some very unflattering photo's of me. I wanted them real, unedited and raw. I needed to see myself in a "Before" situation. I needed to see the truth. I also took my measurements and logged my  weight. Seeing that number on the scale was the hardest part of all. So after some tears and a big pity party.....and yes Ice Cream was invited, I owned myself. All of it. And I owe it to her to make a change.
This is my journey. I have struggled with the decision to post the pics. I'm not ready yet. It's still too raw for me. Besides, right now it's not a before picture, it's just a bad picture of a fat girl. I have owned it for me, and when the time is right, I'll release her into the world and set her free. She will then be my "before" picture.
In the last couple of weeks, I have had to own the word no. I am a pleaser, and I struggle with letting people down. What I realize now, is that in doing so, I have let myself, my husband and my children down. Why am I rearranging my life for my clients, and not myself? This had to come to an abrupt halt. My health and mental wellness depends on it. This was a topic that my husband and I were butting heads over. Then all of a sudden, we had an "aha" moment. We finally came to terms with what the other one wanted and needed, and we finally made the connection that we were both missing. I can't even put into words what an amazing change this has created in our family. 
I myself have begun a journey of change. I have started to take responsibility for my health and finally found a way to silence the voice of sabotage. This time it is for my heart, and my future. 
I have signed up at the gym again. I forgot about how much I love to work out. Although Miss C screamed for 45 minutes the first day I went, I still went the next day. She is going to have to deal with it. I need that time for me. 
I have started being accountable to my Weight Watchers. Apparently it only works if you actually admit to what you are putting in your mouth. Go figure. For now, I can't commit to eating clean, but I can commit to eating healthy. My kids are still young and I need to be able to have ice cream occasionally, and enjoy a good burger. Weight Watchers allows me the freedom of choice. Once I am told I can't have something, you can be damn sure that I'll have 5 of them....
So today I began week 2. I am calling this, The Summer of Me. I am not going to feel guilty for not working so much. I am not going to beat myself up for turning down clients. I am not going to try to accommodate everyone else's schedule. I am going to take care of ME for a while, and everyone is just going to have to accept it. My kids included. Because in order for me to be here in the future, I have to be here in the present. 
"Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore.”  Andre Gide