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Posts tagged ‘advice’

When the Past Hurts Say Hello…

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Sometimes the past stays away for a long time and then unexpectedly knocks on the door, says hello, brings in their baggage, and wants to stay.

You hear a song, see something on TV, look at old pictures, find old things, have a conversation, read something, or have a dream that brings the memories of old to the surface. Though you’re living in the now, the past sometimes tugs at your sleeve, begging for your attention. Psst, don’t forget about me….

Sometimes our memories are pleasant, making us smile and laugh. Inside jokes, family gatherings, vacations, fun times with friends, your kid’s art projects and memorabilia collected throughout the years, something or someone that helped you grow and change for the better, firsts, buying your home, anniversaries of jobs, marriages, friendships, and so much more. While we should live for today, it’s okay to remember yesterday. It helped us become who we are today.

But sometimes, the memories and feelings they stir up are anything but pleasant. I had a moment like that this morning. Someone is celebrating their birthday tomorrow and dreads it each year, because they keep hoping their dad will acknowledge them and then is disappointed every time. I know this feeling. I share a birthday with my dad and he’s not once called, sent a letter, come to visit, asked me to visit, or done anything to wish me happy birthday. I’ve done so for him and every effort is ignored.

It’s hard to ignore the past when it’s part of your present. There’s still a part of me that longs for my dad’s love, effort to have a real relationship, and healing for all the pain over the years. Despite all he’s done, he’s my dad and I do love him. I think a part of him loves me, but sometimes I’m not really so sure.

I needed to lift myself out of the depression I felt trying to swallow me whole, but wasn’t sure how. I felt the tears coming and kept trying to stop them. I turn 40 this year and I still feel like a little girl begging my daddy to love me. How do I not dwell on this???

Some advice I gave this young person was though it’s easier said than done is to try to focus more on those who are there for them and less on those that aren’t. Advice can and is usually easier to give than take, but I knew I needed to try. I had just posted recently about moving forward, not staying in the past. I knew I owed it to myself and anyone I’ve given this advice to, to take it to heart myself.

A part of me does long for my dad’s love and attention, but if I dwell on that or anything else that I can’t control, I’ll be an emotional mess every day. I can’t control others or many situations, only myself and how I react to what happens. I may not have the affection I seek from him or many others, but I do get it from so many more. They show me love and it’s that love I should focus on, treasure, and give to them in return.

So, past and even present pain, I say this to you, you’re not welcome today. I will take your baggage for you, place it and you in an Uber, and send you on your way. You will not destroy me with your negativity, not today, no not today. I hope this helps even one of you who may be struggling this way yourself. May you know you are loved and use that as a light to get through to a good place. When the past hurts say hello, let us tell them goodbye.

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The right path isn’t always paved with gold….

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Sometimes the path most worn, most traveled looks like the safest and best one to follow. I mean, if many take this path, it can’t be bad, right? It looks easy and safe, so why not? I don’t have time for bumps, puddles, or any obstacles really, so I’ll just play it safe.

I have felt these things myself plenty over the years, but something I’ve often found is that taking the way most traveled or the seemingly easier path just led to more problems than I had before. Sometimes what we want most is not just so easy to get, but we can be an impatient sort, can’t we? 😉

I’ve heard people say that if it’s worth it, it’s going to take patience and hard work. Now and then, we do happen upon good things, but often, we do need to work for it and we have to be willing to wait. Sometimes, we’ll stumble, fall, and end up looking and feeling pretty worn out and sometimes we’ll even end up not getting what we want. But when failure, rejection, or disappointment leaves us feeling defeated, we shouldn’t give up. No one gets everthing right the first time or even the 50th and really, no one gets everything they want period.

We all face hearing no, not getting our way, not getting something right, failure, and disappointment. The most successful aren’t those that seemingly get things right every single time or who have it all. They’re those that have felt defeated and let down, but kept on going. They are the ones who don’t quit and the ones who know that it’ll be worth it in the end to travel that bumpy road.

I sometimes want to make a break for the smooth path for a bit, to catch my breath, but I just end up swimming through raging currents in the end. With each wrong step, I try to see them as lessons now. And now, instead of feeling ashamed, I use them as tools to inspire others. We all fall, knowing that can be uplifting, when we see how they made it through. I know that’s been the case for me, so I want to do the same for you.

Whether you’re on high ground, feeling pretty good or stuck in a ditch, feeling hopeless, never forget, neither one lasts. We can all help one another too, remember that as well. We can use our journey, the good parts and the bad ones, to inspire others. You use your success or your failures to help someone. The one who is hurting can see that you’ve struggled and that you have found your way out and the one who is doing well can use that as well, to fuel their journey onward and upward.

What we want may not cone easily or at all, but we ought to keep trying and throughout, let our stories help one another. May we give hope, courage, compassion, and love to those around us and may we be willing to accept it when given in return. It certainly makes things a lot better, to have others to share your journey with.

Perfect Parenting

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Many parents have their idea of what perfect parenting is, a style they feel works best and it will often vary from another’s. The thing to remember is just because someone’s views on how to raise their kids is different from how you raise yours, it doesn’t mean they’re wrong or less of a parent. So many sit in judgement and it’s not okay.

It doesn’t matter if you, say, breastfeed and other moms don’t. What some don’t understand is not everyone can do it. Some moms just don’t produce, no matter what they try, some babies refuse to latch, etc. And even if someone can and chooses not to, it doesn’t make them a bad parent. The same goes for whether someone makes their own baby food and another may choose to use the prepackaged stuff, such as Gerber. Either way, the kids are getting their nutrients and are developing just fine. What about potty training techniques, how one might get their baby to sleep, disciplining, how they teach their kid to read, whether or not their kid gets paid to do chores or not, how early they start helping out around the house, curfews, whether their kids go to private or public school, or perhaps neither and they do home schooling, and many other parenting topics.

I’ve been the parent that has had others point, stare, and whisper. I have also had the nosy moms that don’t know the situation butt in while at the store, throwing their unwanted two cents in and have seen it happen to others. It is infuriating to have another try to tell you how to raise your kids. If we don’t like something, fine, it’s our right to disagree. However, just because we can verbalize our difference of opinion, doesn’t necessarily mean we should. Sometimes it is best to keep our thoughts to ourselves. And honestly, where do any of us get off judging another because we don’t give into a child’s tantrum, because we let them have McDonald’s once in awhile, are on a different sleep schedule, decide to home school our kids, bottle feed, or use a different method of punishment for acting out? If the child in question isn’t being abused or neglected, it is really no one’s business how they’re being raised. If there’s genuine reason for concern, fine, but then go about it in the proper manner. If not, it is usually best to butt out.

Sometimes we will ask for advice or help, I mean, they say it takes a village. 😉 Sometimes too, we see someone struggling and we want to be there for them. That is all well and good, but then when we’re coming from a place of kindness and not a harsh or judgmental one, we need to still respect our boundaries. Never put the parent down and don’t make it all about you and how you raise your kids and ALWAYS listen, be respectful. Parenting can be challenging at times and it makes it that much harder when we have others essentially bullying us because we’re not doing things “right”. We want our kids to turn into well rounded, kind, smart, and hardworking adults, which is made easiest when we have a good support system and try our best not to judge one another. These are just my thoughts on it today and not just in parenting, but in life. We should lift one another up, not tear one another down. ❤

Dear Future Me

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So many of us have imagined what we’d say to younger versions of ourselves if we got the chance. Oh the advice we’d give, the wisdom we’d share. Perhaps then we’d have avoided some of the hard times?

I, myself, have written such letters to versions of myself that are long gone. But today, I wondered what I might say to a future versions of myself, were I given the opportunity to meet her. Might it go something like this….

Dear Future Me,

You don’t exist yet, but I’m hoping that when you do and you get the chance to read this that you’ll take what I have to say to heart.

So far, you have spent so much time worrying, over analyzing things, focusing on things that don’t matter in the grand scheme of things, and dwelling on what was instead of what is and what could be. Let me say this, stop. Life is too short to stress so much. If you’re here, able to read this, take a moment to count your blessings and then go out and make the most of the time you have.

How many sleepless nights have you spent worrying about things that worked themselves out in the end? How many times have you needlessly panicked? Let’s not focus so much on what is out of our control or sweat the small things.

Instead, let’s shape the moments we can into ones full of love and laughter. Give when you can. When the hard times come, remember you’ve gotten through worse and push forward believing this too is another hurdle we’ll get over. You may roll your eyes at this, but deep down you know there’s wisdom in what I’m telling you.

Things won’t always be sunshine and roses and nor will they always be dark and depressing. There’s light and dark throughout every stage in life. Find courage in the tough times, let wisdom grace you, and learn from them. Find joy in the wonderful moments, may love touch you, and may you let it do the same for others.

You’ve made it this far, keep going! I believe in you, as do many others. Here’s to tomorrow letting us see its wondrous beauty and all it has in store.

Sincerely,

The you you once knew

 

*What would you tell the you of tomorrow?*

Trying to Live the Gluten Free Way

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I had been so sick for so long and I couldn’t put my finger on what was wrong. Well, then after doing some research, I found out that what’s likely been going on is that I have an allergy to gluten. It made perfect sense and so I decided to try to go gluten free with my eating habits for awhile to see if that made any difference. It has worked wonders, though I have slipped a few times. Some of that was due to not knowing what to look for and some of it was due to special occasions and decided, “eh, why not?” Though, each slip was something I paid for.

Since beginning this change, I feel so much better. But, I still have so many questions. I have been asking friends and family members who deal with this for advice and for tips on what is edible and what isn’t. Well, now I am going to turn to you, my WordPress family. Two of the things I struggle with most right now is finding a good gluten free bread and also tortillas. I tried Mission gluten free tortillas and I can’t stand them. That so far is my biggest issue actually and for that, I guess I am glad.

I found a gluten free pasta that I love and also other stuff like gluten free soy sauce, pretzels, ice cream, etc. And I love that eating my fruits and veggies, as well as most of my dairy products are still possible for me. And of course knowing I can still eat meat is great, though now I have to watch what I season and marinade it with. So, if any of you has any advice, I am open to it!

I am aiming for a healthier and happier me! This is but one step towards that goal! Spring coming and becoming more active will certainly help as well. Bring on the walks to the park, kickball, summer bowling league, playing outside with my son, and just being able to get more Vitamin D, without freezing. 😉 I look forward to anything you wonderful people can share with me! And if I can help any of you who might just be starting this yourself, I will do what I can! ❤

Adventures in job hunting and chasing a dream

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I have heard from several people lately that perhaps the reason why my job search is so rough is because God is trying to tell me that I should be focusing more on my writing. They think that is how I should be making my money. I don’t have a clue though as to where to start. I would love to have my poetry put into books, published, and sold at places like Barnes and Noble. I would love to have my work out there for millions to read, but I don’t know how to go about it, especially when I don’t have the money to pursue it. Is there a way for starving artists such as myself to chase my dream?

I am not the young girl without responsibilities holding me down anymore. I have a son, bills to pay, and things I need to take care of. I take care of my grandma and she’s helped out a bit financially, but she only has so much and has her own bills that need to be paid…I know, I am the one who pays her bills and manages her bank account. She has been doing so much for me for years and while I am caring for her, I still feel badly about this. I want to be able to take care of my bills myself. I have been searching for months, have gone on countless interviews, and nothing has panned out. I feel like I am the queen of interviews, as my step-mom put it the other day. My resume is updated and polished up quite nicely, I wear proper attire, and I go into each one with my game face on. I keep getting such good vibes at most of them and in the end, nothing. Either they choose someone else or they decide not to fill the position after all.

It is so frustrating in this day and age to be looking for a job, especially when so much of my time is dedicated to taking care of my grandma and I also have my 10 year old son with me part time. I keep up the search because I want to be working, to feel productive, to be able to take care of my own needs. I do not like to depend on others, never have. I will keep searching and I will keep writing too. Somehow, some way, God will point me towards the proper path and I will take it. I know He has a plan for me. It is just so frustrating sometimes not knowing what it is, not knowing which way to go.

Writing is second nature to me. I carry a pen with me everywhere, never know when a new muse will find me and inspiration strikes. I have been doing this since I was my son’s age. I can’t imagine not writing or in this case, typing. 😉 It’s an outlet for me, became one when I felt so alone and just needed to find a way to express my feelings, even if it was just to a journal or a piece of scrap paper. It’s been a great friend to me, the written word, both writing it and reading it. I do want to chase my dream, I just don’t know how, where to start. Could I be the next J.K. Rowling, only in the poetry world? I do dabble in short stories and have works in progress for books, but poetry is my first love. If anyone knows where I should begin my quest of becoming published and known to the public, tell me! 🙂 Until then, I will keep sharing it here, on the other writing sites, on Facebook, etc. Because even if I am never well known like Edgar Allen Poe, Emily Dickinson, etc, I am still known via the internet and through my friends and family. This is actually rewarding enough. I don’t NEED to be paid to do this, I do it because I enjoy it and because I like sharing it with others. The size of my audience doesn’t determine how happy I am or how successful I am, not really. I have touched many hearts throughout the ages and that really has been tremendously humbling and worth every sore wrist, night of lost sleep because I had to get my ideas out, and every bit of hard work I put into this.

Still, I’d be lying if I said that if the chance to launch my career presented itself that I would refuse to take it. I’d be a total fool, in my mind, not to take it. I am not alone in the dream of wanting to be known, to be heard by as many people as I possibly can. So, I chase the 9-5 job and the dream of being published and making money that way. Whichever pans out, so be it. If I am sitting behind a desk, working an office job, I won’t complain. I will still have WordPress, Wiffledust, and so on. My family and friends will still support me. I won’t be heartbroken if this is the extent of accomplishing my dream, because it’s more than many get and it has touched my life so much already. Thank you, readers and fellow bloggers for being supportive! There are 80 of you now following this blog and even more who have just stopped by to appreciate a random post. I have said it before, will say it now, and many more times in the future….THANK YOU! Thank you for being a part of this journey, you have made it amazing thus far! ❤

Who Am I?

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I am many things to many people. Who am I to you? I am a mom to Zachariah. I am a daughter to Danette and Russell, a step-daughter to Cindy. I am a sister to Mike, Matt, & Brenda. I am an aunt to Joey, Ethan, Avery, Dorian, Spencer, & Kaylee. I am a grand-daughter to William & Clara and David & Lorinda. I am a niece to Lyle, Scott, Debbie, Karen, Pam, Cindy, Sandy, Marion, Holly, Lisa, & Georgia. I am a cousin to Chris, Meghann, Halley, Emilee, Scott, Kari, Katie, Sean, Courtney, Stacie, Hannah, Jack, Will, Lyle David, Jim, Bill, Tony, Alan, Theresa, Kristina, & Tamara…that’s just my first cousins. 😉 I am a friend to many. I am God’s child, a Christian, a beacon of light & love. 

I have been a co-worker, a passer-by in the store, the woman driving ahead of you and also behind you as well as next to you, the woman next to you at the bar, the one you see/hear singing karaoke, a teammate on bowling leagues, your competitor, a foe and adversary, the woman next to you at church, a choir member, an actress on stage at school and church, a writer, a photographer, a cook, a nurse to my sick child and others I have baby-sat for, ah yes and a babysitter, a cat owner, a lover, a fighter, a doodler, a giver, a taker, a loaner, a borrower, a thief, a crier, one full of laughter, a thinker, a procrastinator, a motivator, a roommate, a loaner, a party goer, a student, a judge and jury, a forgiver, and that list goes on and on.

I am one who loves even numbers and has an obsession with things being even and symmetrical, yet my favorite numbers are 3, 7, & 11 and not really sure why. I am O.C.D. with cleanliness and organization. I can tell if people have moved my things and some have messed with me with that because they find it funny to do so, I usually am not amused, though have gotten better with it over the years. 😉 I used to HATE the color pink, but I like it now. However, nothing trumps green and deep down, it’s always been that way even though I love many colors. I am known as Rainbow Dark, Rainbow or R.D. for short in the karaoke world because of that and also my tendencies to be random and show up in all black now and then. I love music, most forms of it and the forms I don’t, I find ways to at least appreciate them….like opera, polka (good at weddings lol), most rap, etc. I have Christian Contemporary, country, pop, classical, show tunes, Disney, alternative, rock, metal, ska, punk, E.D.M, and so on in my library. It’s been a lifeline for me for my whole life, as has been my writing. They have both been great outlets for self expression. I love to read, mostly fantasy and perhaps some drama/suspense as well. I do not like horror movies, messes with the Schizophrenia that I have. I LOVE comedies, laughter is wonderful medicine for an angry mindset or someone who is tired of crying. I also love fantasies like Lord of the Rings, Harry Potter, Chronicles of Narnia, etc. Prayer is HUGE, as is my faith in general. It’s a huge part of me.

I am NOT a morning person, never really have been. I like to cook, when I have people to cook for. I have been experimenting more and more these days. I used the broiler for the first time this year and it turns out I can use it well. I also have been using spices and marinades. 🙂 I like to snuggle under a warm blanket and watch Disney or perhaps read a book till I am tired enough to sleep. I still sleep with stuffed animals and/or the pillow my grandma made me, when my boyfriend isn’t with me. I like a warm bath to relieve tension, but most days I prefer a shower so I can just get in and out. I still color and doodle, it relaxes me. I collect Tinkerbell dolls, many colorful things, butterfly stuff, and still have an obsession with Rainbow Brite. I like to watch N.C.I.S, Criminal Minds, Law & Order, & such to make my mind think. If it weren’t for the gore, I’d love to be a forensics scientist. Though I am more numbers oriented and think I’d be best suited as an accountant. If I’d ever gone for my dream however, I’d be doing Broadway to combine my love for theater and music. I’d love to be in the cast of RENT, Les Miserables, Grease, Oklahoma, and more. I will settle though for just watching and listening to the soundtracks. I wish I had more theater loving friends, eh, but it is what it is! I do also love football, GO GREEN BAY PACKERS! Oh and of course for baseball, GO BREWERS! I have tickets for opening day so that my boyfriend and I can go, it will be a first for us! I used to work at the ballpark, it will be nice to be there just as a fan. 🙂 

I hate onions, but love sour cream and onion dip, the chips are good too. Meat, yes, it is good. I especially like chicken and pork. found out how yummy they are when broiled. 😉 Cheese, it goes on a lot! I like my veggies too: cucumbers, non cooked green and yellow peppers, cauliflower, broccoli, brussel sprouts…when made right, green beans, raw spinach, corn on the cob, peas, and I suppose carrots are alright. I like strawberries, raspberries, peaches….only the fruit itself, not anything peach flavored, nectarines, pears, bananas, oranges, kiwis, black raspberries, grapes, and will tolerate apples. Bread, I usually remember a restaurant for the bread they have. I am not big on rye or the bread that has chunks of stuff in it. Olive Garden has great bread sticks and Red Lobster has great cheddar biscuits. I am not big on seafood, but I eat more than I used to. Hmm. I am hungry now. I did brush my teeth not too long ago though and I should be headed to bed soon.

Throughout my ramblings, I don’t know what you have learned, but I hope I did entertain you for a moment or two. Dream big, just remember to go for them when you wake. Love without letting fear hold you back. Sing, dance, write, be you always, LIVE! It’s never easy to find balance, but try in all aspects of your life. Do grow up enough to take care of what you need to, but never fully grow up, keep a part of your youth alive. Make mistakes, get back up, and push forward. Celebrate your triumphs and learn from your failures. Don’t be naive and be a doormat, but do let people in. Give more than you take, but don’t be afraid to accept offerings of kindness. Love more than you hate. Hate and anger consume. Forgive, not for the sake of the other, but for your own so that you may be free. Preaching about karma means you still dwell upon it, let go and let God. Don’t miss an opportunity to tell your kids you love them, that you’re proud of them. Be a friend and let people be one to you. Be good to yourself, no matter how hard it is to do. Believe in you! It took me a long time to believe in me, but now that I do, it feels great! 

Who am I? That is where I started this. I end this by saying, through all that I am to many people, at the end of the day, I am me. I am Carissa. Make of that what you will! I am finally heading to bed because I have finally grown tired enough to sleep. Good night and God bless!

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