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Posts tagged ‘writing’

To be 17 again…

I worked with a wonderful high school senior recently. Listening to her talk about her post high school is future was great. She has big plans and I just feel she’ll do absolutely amazing!

When I was 17, my plans were to go to school for theater and music. I didn’t end up doing anything big with either. I sing, for myself mostly and my daughter likes listening to me sing. Karaoke is a fun outlet I get to use once in a great while. My theater ambitions have just become dreams of old. Sometimes I’m sad for the future that never was.

When I think about where I’m at now though, I don’t feel so bad. Photography has been a passion of mine since I was 13. Getting to capture life’s moments and turn them into forever memories for others (and myself) fills me with joy.

It took me until I was in my late 30’s to go after my photography dream. Before that, it seemed like all my childhood career dreams would just be that, dreams. Finally, upon a suggestion by a good friend and an impulsive whim, I went for it. Sometimes it’s stressful. When I feel overwhelmed, I find I need to step back a bit and lighten my load. Overall though, it’s been a fantastic journey and I feel blessed I’ve been given this chance.

That’s how I started my blog too. A good friend suggested I share my story with others and on a whim, I decided to go for it. Nearly seven years later, here I am, still sharing my story with all of you. It fills me up with joy that I get to do this and that I get to be a part of your journeys as well.

That’s one dream still that I know is within my reach that I’ve only scratched the surface with, my writing. I blog and it’s terrific! I share my life, poetry, ideas, thoughts, etc with you. I want to do more. I have a couple poems published through poetry.com, but I want to reach even more people. I want to write and publish books. I’ve gotten a start to many and only finished two, back when I was 15 and 16. I never did anything with those. My style has changed as I’ve grown. I want to touch more hearts with my story. So, I’m starting to write a book, again, one I hope to finish and publish. This dream CAN happen!

With that said, if there’s anyone reading this that is wanting to take a leap and go for something they dream of and yet just haven’t yet, DO IT!!!! Don’t say that it’s not the right time. There’s often not a right time to do things, you have to create that time. Don’t let others and their doubts hold you back. Don’t hold yourself back either. DO IT, GO FOR YOUR DREAM! BELIEVE IN YOURSELF AND GO FOR WHAT FUELS YOU, WHAT YOU WANT MOST!!! Write. Bake. Act. Start a band. Record music. Teach. Be a doctor. Fight for injustice and be a cop or maybe a lawyer. Be a parent. Open a flower shop. DJ. Start a business. Whatever it is, GO FOR IT! Be your best you and let others see it! As long as we’re here, still living and able, it’s not too late. We don’t need to be 17 again. We can make things happen at 23, 37, 45, 51, 68, etc. We CAN! LET’S DO IT!

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Healthy mind, healthy body

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Some know this and some do not, that a healthy mind and a healthy body go hand in hand. It’s important to take care of yourself, in every way.

A month ago, I joined the Optavia program to better myself, mostly my physical self. What I’ve come to realize is, my mental health is just as important and when you work on them both, they effect each other.

Today, I began a four week challenge within the healthy habits group I’m in, that’s a part of the Optavia program. It’s a weight loss challenge, but it’s more about us as individuals, not for us to compete against one another. This isn’t The Biggest Loser, no one is getting voted off if they have a rough week.

One thing we’re supposed to do is work on a healthy goal each week. This week, mine is to focus on my mental health. I have struggled with mental health issues since childhood. I’ve learned to manage them much better over the years, but they still get the best of me some days. As of late, I’ve been more irritable. The mania has kicked in and I’ve been so short tempered and over stupid stuff.

My grandma just died, a week ago, so I’m sure that has a lot to do with it. Losing her is the hardest death I’ve had to deal with. I’ve lost family and friends over the years, but no one was super close to me, except one friend, who died nearly two years ago. I still have a hard time with that sometimes, more lately for some reason and now my grandma is gone.

She was not just “Grandma” to me, she was a second mom, a friend at times, and someone I could count on when I felt alone, when I had no where else to go, when I needed help with bills or needed a sitter for my son, or just needed to talk. She has done more for me than anyone else. As I write this, my heart aches. I feel the grief tearing at the scar tissue, ready to burst open to painful wounds.

I feel grief, sadness, and like a part of me is missing. Grief is the unfortunate price of love. I’m glad, in a way, to feel this pain. It means that the love we shared was real, that the connection we had was strong. But, oh, is it ever gut wrenching and sometimes outright debilitating.

Next comes the guilt I feel, over not being there enough the past few years. She did so much for me. When she needed someone to look after her, but wouldn’t admit it, I stepped in.

I took care of her on my own for over a year. It got increasingly difficult and eventually, I left and let my uncle step in. I feel awful. I made sure her home was clean, her meds were taken at the proper time, fought with her to shower and use her walker, paid her bills, ran her errands, did her laundry, made and transported her to appointments, cooked meals, and kept her company. It was difficult, but things seemed to be managed. I left and the house got destroyed all over again and she became a shut in.

I feel angry at myself for walking away when it got too hard and angry at my uncle for not doing more. He’s a big part of why I stepped in in the first place. I thought maybe though that things would be different this time. My mom also said I needed to focus on my son and relationship with my now husband. She told me not to feel guilty, that I was doing what I needed to do for my family. Yet, a part of me still feels so angry with myself. I need to let it go, but not sure how. I need to stop being angry with my uncle for letting things get the way they did, with my other family members for not being there at all, and with others, who like myself, maybe could have done more. I need to let go. She was old, unhappy, and in pain. It was time for her to be called home.

Something else weighing heavily on my mind is my son and this court situation. I need to stop obsessing over what I can’t control, give it to God, and pray for the best outcome for my boy. It’s easier said than done though. His well-bing and happiness are so important to me.

I fought the good fight, as it were, nine years ago. If I’m being honest, it went the way it needed to back then. I didn’t see that at the time. I didn’t lose and neither did his dad. Our son won, because he finally had a set schedule with me and that was much needed. His dad retained placement and I saw that as a slap in the face, but now I know it was what was best at that time.

Things have changed drastically over the years and I, along with many others, no longer feel this is what’s best, not for him or anyone closely involved. He has been asking us for years to have primary placement given back to me. His dad either ignored him, said let’s give it more time, or outright said it’ll never happen. I tried to work with him for years on this, but he won’t budge. Our son finally told me last summer, “He’ll never change his mind, Mom. You’ll need to go to court to make it happen.”

I held out hope for a little bit, with every bad thing that happened, I hoped his dad would see this change needed to happen, but he’s just dug his heels in more. So, I decided I was done waiting and would honor my promise to my son, he’d asked me to promise that I’d never give up on him and that I’d fight to bring him home. So, that’s what I’m doing. It’s been stressful on everyone. I pray it goes well, that it’ll all have been worth it. I just want to see my son happy and successful.

It feels good to write about these things, to get them off my chest and not feel judged, like I need to vindicate or explain myself. It’s freeing to express my thoughts and feelings. I hope doing this more will help me live less bogged down mentally and become a better version of myself. I hope this will lead me to take better care of myself, in all ways.

I got a diffuser and essential oils for sleep and stress aides, better pillows to help with sleep, joined the Optavia program to help with my physical and emotional health, am working on praying more to help with my spiritual health, and am now turning back to my writing as well, to help myself grow. Here’s hoping and here’s to my health!

The Four Letter Word

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Today’s topic is what many from where I live call the four letter word. I live in Wisconsin and if you’re from here or even visited, you know that one thing we’re known for is cold winters. They do call the city where our football team plays, The Frozen Tundra. 😉 Some absolutely love winter, the cold, and snow. Some like to ski, snowboard, go sledding, ice skate, etc. Though, there are those of us who are not terribly fond of the white stuff. Shoveling, driving in it, and just looking at it after awhile gets old. 😉

Snow is something I have grown accustomed to, as I have lived with white winters my entire life. My personal opinion of the cursed stuff is that it looks beautiful on tree branches and hey, one must have it on Christmas Day. However, I grow very tired of looking at it fairly quickly. I don’t like the snow, ice, slush, and cold weather. I don’t like the darker days. Snow, blech! I often joke around saying that I was born in the wrong state. Some would say to me, ” Why don’t you move?” Well, it’s not so simple to pack up your life and just leave. When your family, friends, and all you’ve ever known is here, it is difficult to truly imagine living anywhere else. I am a Wisconsinite, through the rain, sleet, and snow.

I do think it can be fun for many too and wouldn’t begrudge anyone for enjoying it. Watching kids build snow forts, have snowball fights, make snow angels and snowmen, and just enjoy the wintry days is refreshing. I know too that there’s a place for everything. The earth needs its time to rest and rejuvenate, so then when spring comes, we’re ready for rebirth and renewal. We may complain about the snow and cold in the meantime though. 😉

Since I do live here and endure it every winter, I do try to make the best of it. I look out the window when snow is gently falling and find beauty in it. I like to watch the few creatures who brave our cold beauty frolic in the snow. I do look forward to taking my young daughter sledding and building our snow masterpieces. There’s fun to be had and beauty within it, if we take the time to see it. Even if snow isn’t your cup of tea and you prefer warmer weather, try to see snow’s place in the world around us and appreciate it for the good it brings.

Family Dynamics & How to Survive

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I told myself today that I need to write more. I used to write a lot. Writing has been a form of expression and solace for me since fifth grade. Usually when I was at my lowest, if I turned to writing, I was able to start healing. Between writing and music, I have found a cheaper way to vent and mend than therapy. I am highly disappointed in myself for not turning to writing more in the recent past. I need to challenge my writing skills and need to bring more creativity into my life.

I asked my Facebook family to give me ideas today so that I may begin writing once again, as I felt a block when it came to what to write about. Also, what better way to find out what people would want to read about than to ask the very people you’re trying to reach out to. Two of my friends responded. One wants me to write about encouragement, faith, hope, love, and the like and the other wants me to write about family. I am going to do my best to write about both. Let’s see how this develops.

My experiences with family have been all over the board. Growing up, I saw most came from the stereotypical perfect family: Mom, Dad, a couple of kids, and maybe a pet or two. For me though, it was my mom and I for so long. Enter in a boyfriend now and then, but most of my childhood it was just us. I met my dad when I was 10. Then, I found out I have a step-mom and three younger siblings. At 13, nearly 14, I was put into foster care and learned about yet another family dynamic. I have come to learn that families come in all shapes and sizes. There isn’t a perfect type of family. I have also learned that no matter how happy a family may seem, there’s always struggles. You may see happy faces on the walls smiling at you, but there’s often sorrow, strife, hurt, and more behind those happy faces.

Family should be close knit, bound by blood first, but by love even more. Even when it is, it will face issues over the years. I have felt love and loathing within my family. I have known kindness and treachery. Sometimes the ones that hurt us the most are those we’re related to and sometimes the ones we’re closest to are our friends, who form yet another family dynamic. Not all families are bound by blood. When asked what a family is, I don’t have a concrete answer. I will tell you what I think a family should be though.

A family, whether bound by blood or not, should encourage one another. A family should lift its members up and not tear one another down. A family should have faith in one another, feeling in their souls the love and loyalty from one another. A family should not dictate who is worthy of love and instead if they see a member struggling or going down a path they ought not, reach out and try to help. Sometimes people can’t or simply don’t want to be helped and sometimes you need to distance yourself from another, but to outright turn your back on one without even trying to understand, without trying to be there just seems wrong to me. I have had family members turn their backs on me and on others simply because of the mistakes we made and deeming us unworthy of their love, help, and support. I think that is why it is hard for me to walk away from anyone, family or otherwise. I know how it feels to have people turn their backs on me and it hurts, so I try with all I have to be there for others. Families are not and should never be expected to be perfect. We all, as individuals and groups, fall and make mistakes. It should then be our desire, when one falls, is to help one another back up. I have, perhaps too grand, big ideas of what family should be, but I don’t believe any of it is unobtainable, not when people are committed to working together. No one should let any of the weight fall on one or a few members, but let it be upon us all.

How to survive family life may sound easy to some and extremely difficult to others. For while family should be a force that bands together, sadly, it’s often not. Sometimes we tear one another down and make life extremely difficult for ourselves and those around us. Some do stick together and make family look like something amazing. But having known some of these wonderful families, I see that they too need to work to make their relationships with one another work. Any relationship needs to be worked on. If ever we feel that we’re at a good place and stop, then it will begin to fall apart. We need to keep at it. Marriages, friendships, working relationships, family ties, and the like all require work, effort, time, respect, communication, and loyalty. For me, I have found that I survive my various family dynamics by knowing every individual is just that, an individual. Every one of them is different and I can’t treat each person the same. But, I do try to give each person in my life respect, loyalty, kindness, and love. I also try to communicate, to keep in touch, to let them know when there needs to be something worked on, and when I am very happy by how things are going as well. We face issues, but I try to face them head on and together. If we try to fight through our struggles alone, how can they be fixed? One sided effort fails, but when people come together, so much is possible.

Family isn’t perfect, life is far from it even more so. But, united we stand and divided we fall. My goal is to keep working on the bonds I have formed and to form even more. I plan to never stop working on my relationships, but also plan to get better at knowing when to walk away from something, knowing when to keep trying and when enough is enough. I am far from as wise as I can possibly be, but I feel I can let the wisdom I have gained in 38 years guide me and to help me learn more, about myself and those around me. I hope to grow my faith, both in God and in others. I hope to learn how to encourage others more and learn to accept it from others better as well. Family can show us so much, if we’re willing to see it and learn from one another. We all have our ugly sides, but together we can open our eyes to the beautiful ones as well.

You Color My World Beautiful

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The Red sun rises a top

The Orange tulips and

The Yellow roses while

The Green grass sways in the wind

The Blue sky smiles on you today as

The Indigo dreams dance and

The Violet stranger holds your hand…

 

Dance with me, she sings sweetly

Beneath the trees and fluffy clouds

Feel the rhythm of my love for you

Let it move the stars within you

May they burn brightly for all to see

Beautiful, that is what you are to me

Forever that is what you will be.

 

800, You All Take My Breath Away!

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As of this morning, I was notified that my blog now has 800 subscribers! I feel like I was just posting about reaching the 700 mark. Wow! Once again, thank you for your never ending love and support! I love you guys and gals! Thanks for the joy you bring into my life and for making me feel loved. Thank you for inspiring me and for letting me inspire you!

 

A community made up of many from all over the world

Here to share thoughts, feelings, ideas, and pieces of who we are

Hoping to touch other’s lives

Connecting a little more each day

One friendship at a time, our community grows

 

Four years ago, I took a chance

Opened up my heart to anyone willing to see me

Exposing my soul to anyone whose eyes are open

And trying to see inside your hearts

Crashing through cracks in the walls

 

Thank you for letting me in

And for accepting me as I am in return

For being who you are without reservation

No need to hide a single part of your soul

Know too that I will not hide from you

 

I look forward to continuing this journey with you

Virtual hand in hand, we inspire one another

Encouraging self discovery through each other’s life lessons

Give and take, happily the pauper and prince co-exist

Isn’t this the way the world should be?

 

 

Random Thought

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Something that is truly amazing is when readers can find meaning in a piece that the writer never even considered until the readers said something.

Just food for thought. ♡

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