Ask Toi: How do I deal with my Parents thinking I’m not following old school parenting with my own kids?!

This is multilayered. This could have come up if you’re making comments about new school parenting is better. It can come up if you do something that an old school parent thinks is too new school. It could come up if you ask for advice from old school parent but then do the opposite.

Depending on when it comes up is how you proceed. There’s no doubt that old school parents believe and hold to their old school values. That can be from diapering to discipline. So if you are stating how better the new school way is better often times old school parents hear “you think you’re a better parent,” or they hear, “you think my ways are wrong.”

If the argument of who is better comes up during a time when the new school parent does something in front of an old school parent that could mess with the new school parent and you think you’re not good enough. You may feel pressure for approval and it can mess you up if you aren’t feeling it. If you ever ask an old school parent advice and then don’t take it, it could come off as a “why you ask?!” This is probably the most irritating interactions.

So here’s the thing:

1. Parenting is subjective: you won’t ever get to the point where you feel 100% feel that you are quite finding your rhythm and old school parents are super high fiving you! It would be nice but not everyone has that happy mesh.

2. Old school and new old school ways are within you. You will fuse them but only how much depends on you.

3. Try not to take everything said to heart. Between your own parents and finding your way and the world with their long laundry list of to dos and not to do it will be hard to find your actual way. It’s okay!

4. Trust your instinct-this is hard but necessary

When I had my first child she was born 6 weeks early and had to stay a few days in the NICU. I was fortunate that it wasn’t a longer stay. I relied on my own mother to guide me. She gave me basic parenting skills. However my child had a lot of health issues therefore I had to rely on the doctors for a lot that first couple of years. Probably more than I would have all things considered. A lot of folks was knocking me for it. I trusted my instinct, and did some give and take with those around me. I pushed through! You’re not choosing one side over the over. You’re choosing what you need to feel successful in parenting. Also it’s okay that old school won’t agree. Parenting comes with thick skin. Take things with a grain of salt. No the things that our parents did when we were younger will work now, times have changed but what’s the same is wanting better for your child, keeping them safe and healthy, and working hard to provide. Be gentle with yourself but stand strong in your decisions.

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National Girlfriends Day

Happy national girlfriends day to all of my girlfriends. Girlfriends make life that much better! They are understanding, real, and dependable. They are the glue in your life that you never knew you needed.

When I was in my 20s I used to say things about keeping my circle small because I didn’t want to deal with drama from other females. Truth moment is that the one who was about the drama was me. My relationships with females had more to do with me than what others were capable of doing. Family you don’t choose but friends you do. Anyone I attracted was a reflection and is a reflection of who I am! I’ve taken full responsibility of that today. I was warned many a day about it and was super blind! However as I mature some relationships don’t carry that much weight as they did back in the day!

My girlfriends mean the world to me. Each have different functions but all of them are super dear to me. They are some of the most encouraging people I’ve met. They make me feel like I can do anything. They keep me accountable. I am a better woman, because of my girlfriends. I would like to thank them and they know who they are!

If you are lucky to have good girlfriends nurture those relationships. Spend time, remember special days, be there for them, celebrate them, hold their hand when they need it, and be their biggest cheerleaders! Girlfriends are like diamonds in that they are truly rare! Cherish them and send them a message today of all days letting them know how much they mean to you! Don’t take for granted their place in your life!

Happy National Girlfriends Day!!!

Love is….Making Room

So it’s another episode of Love Is. Let me say my recap is going to offend some but I’m not holding back.

Nuri and Yasir are getting super close and spending a lot of time together. They look like the perfect couple! However major red flags. As much as I love the realness of their relationship let me say, if I was in the dating world right now, I’m quite sure I would be in the sex store because my tolerance for some of this behavior I tolerated from the men I dated in my 20s could not and would not be tolerated now!

  • Yasir has a job! Thank the lord for employment. A man without a job is a hard pill to swallow. Only a woman who truly loves you will ride the unemployment rodeo but for so long!
  • Kudos to Nuri having the ability to support her man BUT ladies do not ever silence your voice to make your man feel like a man. He needs to be able to have his light next to yours without feeling a certain way! Period! This is not up for discussion!
  • Valentine’s Day foolery-Yasir doesn’t believe in it and Nuri does but like some women she muted that desire to make sure Yasir didn’t feel a certain way! This is a huge no no! Whatever you allow in the beginning and it’s not genuine you will lose in the end! Be honest with yourself and your new boo!
  • New love is great but lying in any way will lead down the wrong road!
  • Not all Hotep men, but some use intellect as the hustle. As articulate as Yasir is his demeanor is off putting. Not just based on my personal experiences, but be careful with any man who is a smooth talker. That smooth talk is the game. If a man is not sincere they will use that smooth talk to gain a place in your heart but will leave you lacking! Guard yourself!
  • Yasir thanks to Sean redeemed himself by making room, he finally found a way to come back to Nuri, and celebrate Valentine’s Day! Had Nuri been clear he would have had no choice to either shit or get off the pot! Relationships should be give and take and never one sided!
  • Yasir spent Valentine’s Day initially with Ruby! Technically he went home aka Ruby’s house and Ruby finally let Yasir know that she put the work into him and Nuri basically came in and reaped the benefits. Men are not projects if your man isn’t making moves it could be you are not the one he wants to make moves with. It’s sucks and maybe it hurts to hear but no truer words ever said! Stop investing years to a man who will not give you what you need. Yasir is making moves with Nuri because he loves Nuri! He was stagnant with Ruby because he no longer wanted to be!
  • Next week looks like an episode of Love and Hip Hop. So we shall see! Until then be careful with love, make sure that the person you are falling for is making room for you too!
  • Sunday Message: Living your Best Life

    I’ve been waiting to right this one for quite some time! The phrase is everywhere. To be honest it’s a good thing to live your best life! Who wants to live the opposite?! However beyond quotes and knowing your angles on Instagram if you’re gonna live it then do the work that it requires.

    Living your best life is best when you start from the inside out. It requires you to leave a few negative folks behind, own your stuff, and be authentic to you. Sound easy but not exactly?! You will find resistance along the way. This is when it’s easier to fake it than to really live in authentic truth! The second you go to live your best life it may cause a ripple effect with those around you! Be prepared!

    More than Instagram Angles

    Who doesn’t love a good picture on social media?! I know I do and you do too! However don’t forget that every picture has a story. I sometimes go back to my pics and think back on what was really going on?! Was I just really good?! What happened before and after the pic! For instance here’s a pic from my solo trip:

    I looked great, felt great and had a good amount of adult drinks. I was in my zone and it was an amazing time. What wasn’t shown was that there was so much work going on. I was in the midst of leaving my job and taking a leap of faith. I actually had secured the bag while there. However dancing between do I leave and start from scratch and how that would affect my family was on my mind. I’m happy to say that leap was super scary and it paid off! However fear and letting go was on the other side of living my best life. Being used to certain behaviors and being completely unsure of myself was on one side and complete freedom, better pay and a better opportunity was on the other side. I could have stayed and made a few waves at my past job but when you don’t move and sometimes take initial fear you could hinder your own blessing. Scared I still leaped! Shout out to those who know that where I am now is a complete reflection of grace! It is not of anything of myself!

    What does living my best life do for you as a person?!

    It makes you grateful! Plain and simple! You know how many times a door shut. How many times you were alone?! How many times you had to shut down the naysayer in your own head but you still had to push?! It makes you stronger as you get to the next fight! It gives you a confidence to gas yourself!! It reminds you that you can do anything! It doesn’t erase the pain but it almost suggests that the pain was worth it! So it’s okay to acknowledge it!

    Fear sometimes drops off

    As I kept going on even in fear it eventually dropped off. I never get to a point in my life as if things are just so Gucci. Nope! I walk-in humbleness. I walk like I know where I am going even when it feels like I’m working with a broken GPS! Fear has many of time walked with me until it fell off like a child learning to ride with no brakes! During many moments of my life it’s been like that! However my biggest motivator is myself and next is the little folks that call me mom! I let them know when I make a mistake I use it when I parent. When they can’t get along I openly let them know of the same moments I’ve had. I also want them to know they can keep going!

    So while you say you want to live your best life be prepared for the work that comes along with it. Accept your flaws but don’t simply just say this is me oh well, take what is said and done to you and make the necessary changes! This requires a gut punch here and there! I used to say oh well to what folks said but everyone ain’t telling the same lie! Own it and change it! Also stop living your life with the brakes! The more I get out, the more I attack the list of wants without excuses the more doors open! Step through them!! It’s okay to be okay and enjoy this life! You don’t have to be downtrodden all the time. Life will give enough of those moments so that you don’t have to create them! Learn to enjoy moments. Smile a little! Enjoy a treat and have a little balance! Get out and explore! Live your best life!

    Love is…Intense

    Tonight was on one. As I always like for you to go back and rewatch, these are my thoughts and reactions:

    • Nuri knew damn well she shouldn’t have gone on that ski trip. Keith wanted to hit. Men ain’t inviting you to read scripture. It’s definitely understood. And before you hit me with the whole women don’t have to give it up we know that already. It’s just not the first thing that comes to mind
    • When Keith gave Nuri that Keith’s girl sweater, I literally died on the inside. Nuri wearing that sweater was a sign of when women settle.
    • Spoiler alert: Keith confesses to being gay. There is nothing wrong with choosing a life that you want, but back in this time it was even more taboo to “come out.” But let me say I wasn’t ready but I wasn’t surprised
    • Angela told Nuri right, never put another woman in a position to be fighting etc over a man. Nuri feels so desperate that she’s willing to “call” Yasir but let’s not forget he has a “roommate.”
    • Keith who by the way was high and drinking now wants to back peddle his gay confession. Let me help a few folks out, two people who don’t lie and that’s children and a drunk! Keith meant that and wants Nuri as his beard!
    • Angela is that friend you need. I’m more than willing to do what I can but I accept gift cards too
    • Yasir reminds Nuri that he made space for her and it’s true! Nuri I’m true fashion hit him in the one area he has a deficit in and that’s his lack of employment
    • Nuri goes to the place where Yasir and Rubi share but handles herself in a classy way
    • The end, all I’m saying is Janet Jackson got some definite sexy hits. I’m about to hit up Amazon prime for bulk candles, and a soft rug!
  • Well until next time, just know that the ups and downs of love is worth it for the one that is for you. Love isn’t always as clean as we want it to be! It’s definitely worth it!!
  • For the Love of Friends

    I am blessed in friendship. It’s an amazing feeling knowing that you can be authentic and secure all while having amazing people behind you who support you and love you and love on you.

    Friends who are family

    It’s true that you can’t pick your family. With friends, you are in charge of who you allow in your life. With that being said I have an amazing pool of friends. From childhood to college and beyond, friends are the fuel of life. This weekend I was able to spend time with my college loves. In August of 1999 I entered into Penn State super unsure of myself. I had gotten my college roommate assignment and on it was a name super similar to mine. Her name is Toi. I had never seen anyone with that spelling outside of me. I initially thought I had scored a single room. On move in day I saw a girl who looked similar to me and was warm and inviting. We met and were inseparable.

    A few days later I met Krystle and Marques. They were apart of my scholarship program. Krystle came off super shy. We know now that’s just her secret weapon. Once friends with Krystle you realize how much of a gem she is. She graced us with her love. Krystle is one of the most level-headed women I’ve met to date. I’m still trying to get her to adopt me (inside joke). Marques was funny. He came up to me and Toi once he heard our names was similar and made a joke about it. His wit got him in but his loyalty kept him in even when he and I who dated in college would break up each week! Over the course of time we quickly formed a group and over the course of 4 or a little over some for others in the group we were a mini family. We dined together, traveled together, got in “trouble” with another and went through hard times together. Although a beautiful fellowship of individuals, we had growing pains together. We were there for each other and still continue to be there during the rough times. And almost 20 years from meeting, we found ourselves back together.

    We were able to catch up, talk smack, remember the good and the bad times. It was everything and more that we needed. I know for a fact that they made my college experience that much better and I am super grateful for being able to be a call away from them. I know that as we continue on our journey of life that we remain as strong as ever. I’m super grateful for their loyalty as they have stuck by me when they shouldn’t have. I have nothing but love for our Pennypacker crew and honorary member! P Phi P forever! #peacoatmafia #Pennstatestrong #Weare

    Love Is…petty! Episode 4

    Whew love is….super complicated and petty. There were a lot of take aways from tonight’s episode.

    Love has a lot of gray. We think love is a clean break however beautifully marred keep in mind this was meant to be. Since it was meant to be, timing was off but super on. Each miss and messy moment was in line to unlock their destiny. Cue in the violins but don’t let it put the pause button. Yasir shut the door on Nuri’s face so that his ex wouldn’t know what was going on. As much as he loved Nuri he needed to protect Ruby because well loyalty! There are a lot of red signs that will need to be explored:

    • If you get invited for a weekend getaway, please understand it most likely ain’t for scripture reading. They want the drawls. Nuri’s inability to see this is interesting.
    • Yasir wanted Nuri to see his potential. It’s hard because little girls are taught to not trust in potential. Potential is not enough to make a relationship last. However what Nuri doesn’t know is Yasir is putting in work. His intentions are for her as he cuts ties with his ex, Ruby.
    • Cut ties and learn that guilt is not enough to keep an old relationship solid. Ruby is holding onto the old Yasir and the life she once thought she has and Yasir feels the need to be loyal to the loyalty she has already demonstrated.
    • Women have so much to give to this world more than just the life that we already give. Back in the 90s women were seen and not heard. We are making more waves now but still have to contend with the boys club. We will not be silenced and our opinions will be heard and implemented.
    • Men you can’t keep using women and in addition to that do whatever you want to them by relying on the price of their loyalty. Ladies don’t let them. Give loyalty to whom it’s earned! The worst side to be on with a woman is when she awakens from her mental and emotional sleep and discover you have been playing games.
    • Nuri is attempting to move on and therefore has found herself in deep water with her more stable work boo and is now caught and headed to that ski trip. Yasir played it cool by allowing her to do as she pleases.

    Next week will be interesting to say the least! How will Nuri turn the tide between her and Yasir?! What lessons will need to be learned?!