Protect your Spirit

Happy Monday to you.  Happy I am just making it Monday.  Happy I am alive Monday. Whatever your Monday looks like to you, make it that and rise above it.  Yes the weekend has left some of us dry.  If it wasn’t the news that is constantly being pushed in our faces, to relationships, situationships, kids, jobs, etc you may be at wit’s end.

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So we all know that we need to protect our spirit.  Your spirit is your essence.  It’s your wits.  It’s you in a nut shell. I know there are many times when I have to take a time out. I give my kids one and have no shame in taking one.  You need to protect your essence. All of life’s drama can take the beauty out of you if you let it.  Today I am even more guarded to keep being informed but to filter some of the junk to avoid getting too overly emotional or let things take me out of my element.

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Life is hard but cover yourself today and everyday.  Cover your children who don’t fully understand but are in the presence of the same junk you are touched with.  Never underestimate that they are able to pick up on negative vibes just as much as you do. Protect what they see and hear.  Protect who they are around.  Who you allow your kids to be around speaks volumes as they take on what on who is around them.  Protect what words you say around them as well.  Words have life and death in them and you have to be careful that the tearing down isn’t occurring in-house.  We are worried about the outsiders but truth be told you can cause more damage in house than you will ever know if you aren’t careful.

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Filter what you take on when it comes to social media. I love social media but the down size is that it doesn’t always allow you to be social.  It can become battle grounds.  It can become warfare. It can zap your energy.  It can take up so much of your time.  It can allow you to not be able to disengage with those around you.  It is a choice and you must make good choices on what you entertain on social media.  Everything isn’t worth a response. Everything doesn’t need a clap back.  You have to clean your social media act up. Delete some accounts you don’t need.  Take a few folks off that you allow to get you all up in arms.  Learn to take a step back with who you call friends on your social media accounts.  Never post anything you don’t stand by 100% and be prepared to live with any backlash.  Learn that some things that inspire you may just be for you.  Learn that you can choose to spread hate or love.  Love on yourself.  Practice self-love everyday.  Mental illness is real and it can be elevated by social media because when the mind is weak it allows the defenses of everything to be low.  Be careful.  Speak life today.  Speak life into your situations and find ways to make your bottom line better.  Reach out to help others when your able.  It’s no different from when you’re on a plane, they tell you to put the oxygen mask on you first.  Same rule applies in life, stop handing out all of your resources to others and leave yourself depleted.  Help you than you can help someone else.  Have a great Monday and practice self love and love on others around you.

When Basics are Celebrated

Please do not get me wrong.  I think anyone doing anything positive is good news.  I love that people are attempting to move past the backward thinking that has seemed to take this world over.  However, can we just be real for about a few seconds?  When basic behavior is like the best thing since sliced bread than we have a problem.

You are in a dating situation the man of your dreams is wining and dining you and pulls your chair out, etc now you are like see my man loves me?  I don’t doubt he does.  In a world where men and no not all men are too busy getting caught up in the negative things, playing video games and no job, making babies with no responsibility this could seem like a breath of fresh air.  However the issue isn’t in the mere manners, it needs to be our own personal standards that have gone on a decline. Even when I dated the most thugs of boyfriends they pulled my chair out.  It was the way I carried myself that lead them to know from the gate that if they never pull a dime like myself they was going to step it ALL the up.  So opening up doors is normal for me during my dating processes. Opening doors was basic.  It wasn’t because I carried myself in a stuck up way, I didn’t I was laid back but my mere demeanor said hey buddy, this is going to be a classy outing. Now this didn’t always mean I was at 5 star restaurants all the time either.  I could go to a night of dancing in the hole in the wall but still be treated like I wasn’t living in the hole of the wall.  I set the standard!

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If you are married and your husband is super caring, we uplift them. We start labeling relationship goals right off the bat because a husband kissed their wife.  Okay I get there are sexless and boring marriages (all by choice) but a simple kiss even a romantic passionate one making relationship goals only means that there are a lot of married couples who do not enjoy the union they are in. Kisses are done simply at the altar or union as a seal of commitment.  So….yeah we have got to raise the standard.  I had a conversation with my own husband and we acknowledged the highs and lows of our relationship and how outside things and distractions are often celebrated when we lack the self-sufficiency to love on each other and ourselves in the way it should be.  A husband who simply comes home is celebrated as if he isn’t supposed to return home after his outside of the home obligations are done.  He is celebrated and the phrase, “well at least he’s not cheating” comes into play. Like is he supposed to be cheating?  I know cheating is big but let’s not give more respect to the cheater than the faithful?  We live in a messed up world.  The only way to make the world smaller is to learn to leave the outside world OUTSIDE. Spend more time making YOUR world what YOU want it to be.

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If you are married and have kids and your husband doesn’t lift the finger to assist you with the kids some of it on you because you won’t speak up and other reasons is because he doesn’t think he should, I hear well at least he’s in the home.  So many men are locked up or leave after they make the babies.  This is true.  However him being in the home still living like an absentee father is even more crazy.  You do know they exist.  They are simply bodies but they don’t do a thing but get the greatest father in the world book just because they stayed.  Um, if you have a baby and make a baby it is YOUR responsibility to be there, provide, and dare I say interact and assist in the raising of that child.  It is simply not okay to come in the home, say hi, watch tv and send the child to bed and think you have arrived in parenting.  NO you need to be a force in the home.  You need to be helping with whatever it takes to make sure you have healthy, loved and supported children.  Ladies, if you have a man who is simply there don’t expect it.  Also speak up and don’t berate him because he doesn’t do things like you do either.  It’s give and take once ALL parties pay their part.

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I believe in rewarding kids but kids are supposed to do good things if they are influenced in the right way.  For instance every time your child does something he/she will NOT always be rewarded.  Teaching integrity means that at some point they learn to do the right thing simply because it’s right and not because someone is watching them or will give them something.  This is why some kids feel a sense of entitlement because you love your little love muffin and use rewards for everything.  Reward systems are awesome.  It can be used to motivate but should not be in the place of all parenting techniques. These little angels grow up and think the world owes them something and you and I both know that really isn’t how it works.

Like I have always pushed, balance is key.  Never do more on one side over another. I know this whole not wanting to be “basic” is a thing but the reality is there are times when going back to the old landmark really does still work.  The standard you set in your life and how you work through it should still be set by a measurement.  If a person is worth your time they will know what your standard is.  That is why some people go ga ga over things like good sex.  Is sex supposed to be bad?  Yes there are some sexual partners that don’t always do it right off the bat and you have to set the standard even in that on what you will accept or not.  However some folks get one strong sexual partner and will throw caution to the wind over some wet sheets and weak knees.  It’s like having a stack of cards and as long as one suit is good, you don’t pay any attention to anything else.  Set the standard.  Know you are worth to be treated the way you want and make no excuse for it.  In time once your basic needs are met the other items will line up because you are looking through balanced eyes.

Ask Toi: I really want to take a sex break from my husband but how?

This is definitely a first of hearing of such breaks in a marriage.  I don’t know how that will roll over with your husband.  I am sure you have your reasons so you will definitely need to lead the conversations with that.  When I was dating my husband who of course was my boyfriend at the time, I remember wanting to take a break but it was more or less for religious reasons.  As a Preachers Kid or PK I knew sex was wrong and figured this break would refocus us.  He went along with it in the beginning but in the end I was the one who was like hey no I am good let’s start this up.  For my daters, be open to your own sense of what works for you.

When you are married there are so many reasons why this wouldn’t be a good idea unless it’s for health reasons.  I mean you’re married that is supposed to signal life time partner as well as lifetime sexual partner. However its your body and although some folks place the emphasis on women’s bodies belonging to their husband I do not believe in it UNLESS its belonging to both.  Meaning as a woman I should be able to call on sex and request it and get it within reason too and let’s face it, it doesn’t always work out that way in most homes.

Your body and your reasonings will be all you need to talk to your husband. What he may be okay with may not work for all but that won’t matter.  I would say don’t go to talk to your husband with the sex break and make it for some unrealistic amount of time. Men are physical beings and that won’t fly.  If you felt the need for sex breaks this should be something that both he and you are okay with.  If not you will come off to him as someone who wants to control using one of the biggest methods of control that a large amount of women use and that’s sex.  I know women who withhold sex not because of issues but as a way to get their husbands to do whatever it is they want.  Husbands aren’t kids.  If you want a good marriage you need to have open communication and withholding sex signals immaturity to communicate effectively.  However you are a team and if a member of the team needs something it should be heard and validated.  There are a lot of sexless relationships that I would say work but only usually for the one that made it that way. Relationships are give and take and so you must be willing to hear his side of how he feels about this too. Do not get upset when he’s not on board.  I as a woman wouldn’t be but that’s just me.  Allow him time to process it.

You and only you know why, you should deal with your why first because it could be that the sex is a physical sign of something emotional going on. Dealing with the cause is a better fix to what is going on inside of you.  Explore your why a little further.  You may want to do this before speaking to him.

Protect your Babies-Step it up!

I was watching a video of a judge that was reprimanding a couple.  The mother of the child that was brutally beat and killed was held responsible too for the heinous death as she should be.  However the part that stuck out to me is the fact that while the mother was working the man was home not working.  Now do not confuse this with men being stay at home dads because the wife has a higher paying job. I understand that.  I was a full-time stay at home mom for many years.  The cost of daycare can be a person’s whole salary or very close to it.  Sometimes it’s not cost-effective to have two people working if the income coming in will not put a dent to anything.  If the man is the one making the less money it makes sense to have him stay at home and keep his kids no different from it is for a woman.  I do not think it makes him any less than a man to do so.  I would rather somebody be financially responsible than struggle any day when you don’t have to.

My issues aren’t with the stay at home dads but the fake stay at home dads we have in the society is who I am coming for.  You are not a stay at home dad because you don’t want to work and are comfortable with your woman taking care of you.  I don’t know where we strayed with the next generation but if there was ever an epic fail like it is today, men are missing it.  This is not a hate men blog.  No this is hey get it together blog. There is no need for any man sitting at home waiting on his woman to bring home a check while he does nothing.  You not even selling lemons on the highway?  Not flipping a burger?  My husband has worked 2 jobs to make things work.  Not because he wanted to but because he had to. You won’t be able to convince a real woman to a man not working is a good thing.  I have a wonderful father who barely took 5 days off of work since I was a preteen.  That speaks volumes.  My grandfather is in his 80s and he is “retired” but still works and does odd jobs like busting concrete and ground work.  For lazy men let me school you that means the government says you have earned your keep you can relax and he says naw son let me get out here so my wife can relax and make sure she good. His kids are grown.  He is still out here doing what needs to do to make sure there is steady money coming into his home.  I spoke to him last week and told him he really could give a few young cats a lesson on what hard work looks like. So from where I sit I am not here for no non working, sitting on his ass, don’t want to work but would rather play video game man.

The toddler was mostly in this do nothing man’s care as she endured over 50 injuries and most of the injuries were brutal even for an adult.  So this man didn’t work was a monster and decided to beat the hell out of a child.  Too much idle time on his hand.  A job would have not given him that much access to that child.  Would he still be a monster?  Most likely but damn he literally day in and day out over a short period of time beat a child.  I can’t even fathom that baby’s last moments.  I look at my kid and they frustrate me like no one can. To think I would lose control and inflict pain is unimaginable.  I barely beat their behinds let alone abuse them.  We have to step it up. Both the mom and dad was wrong if that was her dad.  The amount of men who are beating and killing our kids don’t even be the dads.  It’s usually a no account boyfriend that we freely turn over our kids to so they can rape and hurt them.  Let me school you like my momma would school you, there ain’t that good of the D to allow me to put my kids in harm’s way.  I will not turn a blind eye to my child over a man.  These babies are defenseless and we are the ones leading them to the foolishness.  We already have to wonder if a stranger is going to manipulate and mess with our children however its the monster you know.  Let me say I can’t tell you as a woman how long you should date a man before you allow them around your child.  I do say you need to spend some seasons with him before you leave them unattended.  Watch how he looks at your child.  Watch and see what he does when he gets angry.  Listen to your child.  Check your children.  Be prayerful.  Stop getting a new man and being so head over heels that you leave caution to the wind.

What can you say if you aren’t mindful of your child when something happens.  Yes its the monster who did wrong but if you didn’t pay attention you bare the responsibility. The mom knew that the child had at least one serious head injury.  This man with blunt force hit this baby so hard that she had at least 10 dents in her skull.  Think about that for a moment.  She was hit that hard and no one noticed negative signs from that?  Or it was noticed but the care level wasn’t there.  I shutter sometimes when I read these headlines about abuse and death of children.  Everytime one of these precious babies die it only shows the potential the world loses for these beautiful lights to have given something back to it.  We need our babies but the only way to guarantee that is to do better and screen who we allow them to be around.  Let me also tell you that you got to watch friends or family.  There is not one member of my family or set of friends that I would put anything past.  That doesn’t mean I have them pegged as anything that simply means that I will never allow my relationship with them cloud my judgement. If my child said something happens I got their back first and foremost.  I will never take anyone else other them as they were given to me to protect.  I won’t even allow them around folks who I have tested myself and see they don’t add up.  I do not make one apology for that.  I could care less about your spoiled adult feelings on that.  They are mine and my husband and there are no do overs.

Why are you dragging La La over Carmelo’s alleged affair?

So the tea is circulating that Carmelo Anthony may have gotten another woman pregnant.  I could care less her profession.  My thing is why are you dragging La La for not staying with him?  Did I miss where in the vows it states to honor?  Where is it honorable to sleep on your wife with anyone regardless if you get them pregnant?  Now I know a lot of basketball players and people in the industry get blamed for cheating but it sort of comes with the territory.  Look at all of the examples where these women who marry into this deal with the ups and downs of the many women who just want a piece of the action and slide into the hotel rooms of these men?  Everybody ain’t telling the same lie!

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If and I say if because as much as these stories hit the airways, at the end of the day marriage is between 2 people, that this is true than she shouldn’t have stayed and high-fived his raggedy behavior.   I do however believe where there is smoke there is fire.  So something other than the stress of his NBA career is happening.  The reason I say that is simply due to the fact that when kids are involved people are more than cautious to not play games with separation with kids in the middle.  Even if it’s just this one public story do you know the other things that have taken place between them?  No you don’t but like any married couple who is real and honest, I bet you it was more than just one thing.  It’s never one thing.  If you want to make a marriage work, it boils down to give and take, and going through the mess and wiping it off, working it out and trying.  However when enough is enough you walk away.  Marriage is forever when both parties are in it for the forever.

You not going to convince me that it don’t still take 2 to Tango.  So we gonna need the ones dragging La La to just stop.  Stop the foolishness of this misconceived notion that wives are supposed to be dumping bags for junk.  She didn’t leave Carmelo high and dry. She did what was best for her and her child after the many sacrifices to her had been taken.  Carmelo will be fine.  It’s unfortunate that after so long with the Knicks but career stress isn’t a valid excuse to be out here slipping.  The most disrespectful thing you can do to a wife is to cheat and have a child with another woman.  Some women deal fine with it and others only deal because they have to but that don’t mean they stay.  No different if the shoe was on the other foot. La La would be called every hoe and bitch there ever was.  You won’t be able to drag her for leaving a cheating man over here at ToiTime.  I am a wife and I don’t play those games.  I will never go on record talking about what my husband won’t or will do but I will snatch your edges if you try to drag me for walking away from some crap like cheating like that’s supposed to be happening in a marriage.

The best thing that can be done is one, make sure you ain’t still with Ray Ray that has been knowingly sleeping with your friend for years.  It amazes me the amount of hate within women who have been in the same situation or worst that tell others what they should do, talk about them, and then go home to do the same thing.  We are women we can be better than this.  I know it a bunch of men blogging and dragging La La and making comments.  Not that men don’t talk because they do, but this is some insecure women crap.   My thing and my stance is you don’t know what is going on behind doors and until you have been in the trenches, leave folks alone about what they do with their lives. Secondly there is a child in the middle of this very adult situation that will get older and have to read about both of his parents.  How they handle it needs to be handled with delicacy.

Weekly Wrap Up: April 7, 2017

So I am having a pretty good week.  My weekend focuses will be a wedding I am attending today, the Phillies game, and some much-needed TLC for me.  I love when I have my pamper time.  It gets me super focused on me for a little bit and always me to slip back into mom and wife mode a little happier and easier.  So this has been a little bit of a week with the news and such so let’s recap it all.

 

News

  1. Syrians were attacked by the chemical Sarin which is a nerve agent.  It killed countless innocent victims both young and old.  My prayers to those affected and their families in this senseless tragedy.
  2. U.S. launched a missile strike against the Syria chemical attack.  We will have to give time to see the ramifications of what this could potentially lead to.
  3. Bill O-Reilly has had several endorsers pull away from his brand due to allegations of sexual harassment.

Personal Highs

I lost another 3.4 pounds this week bringing my total weight loss to 32 pounds.  My clothes are still getting bigger and I am not ready to buy anything new just yet.  I am close to my goal and when I get there as promised I will update with a full body picture. I also had a good week closing the relationship I had been struggling to find a common ground with.  It was a bit of a tough situation that had too much gray area than most things I deal with.  I also was able to get some things organized.  I have had a lot of over time this week so I had to really get things in order to make sure nothing went slacking at home.

Blogs

  1. What your friends won’t tell you about marriage-this was released today and it deals with 10 things married people struggle with or know that they don’t always talk about.  People have this souped up idea about what marriage is and sadly it doesn’t always pan out the way the mind thinks.
  2. This has got to go-talking about my continued weight loss journey.  Are you interested in making some changes?  Are you trying to be Summer time or lifetime fun but find it challenging?  I talk about the piles of clothes on the bed and floor because the clothes you want to wear and what you actually can fit or don’t want to fit in are too much.
  3. Losing your mind-its stress awareness month and this week we talked about the mind and what to do if you are having a setback.  We talked specifically what to do if once you are attempting to change your way of thinking but are feeling overwhelmed and need help.
  4. Mental setback-dealing with the little ways we can reset the mind so the thought process doesn’t take over our minds to the point where we struggle to function.

Personal Lows

I am dealing with an issue with my daughter.  I obviously won’t go into yet but working on responses to your children that are appropriate and mirror what you are used to do vs what should be done for the betterment of your child. I am not a perfect parent actually no one is.  The balance of making sure everything is done to uplift a little person is a great task.  Often times it’s not as clean-cut as we hope in our minds it would be.  So if you are a parent just know there will be some lows but the key is to pick yourself up and try to continue to love.

 

So enjoy your weekend. I am hearing in Philadelphia there may be a little warm up next week and after this week of rain and cold I sure could use a little sun on my skin.  Be safe and continue to check in-blogs drop without warning sometimes.

Bling and Foundations

As you know the holidays are a magical time.  Everyone is buzzing around and being in the best moods for the most part.  Gifts are getting purchased and wrapped.  Egg nog is being enjoyed.  This is also the time that as we go into the New Year couples who are dating and not yet engaged get antsy.

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Now I have blogged several times about ultimatums.  I hear many women tell their friends how they are not going into the New Year being nobody’s girlfriend.  Either the man they are with needs to propose or else they are out.  What usually happens is he doesn’t and they don’t leave and it’s really about you the woman who wants to be engaged to set the tone.  Now how you set the tone is not to give the man an ultimatum but give yourself on. Set your own date within yourself and be prepared to stick with it.  If you can’t honor yourself and what you will or won’t tolerate how can you expect someone else to do the same?

Foundation Cracks

Now as much as you want him to “put a ring on it ” consider a few things.  Does this man have his own place?  Like not a spot in a basement somewhere but a place where if you two were to marry you and him can lodge together?  If not what is his plan?  When I say plan it can’t start off with one day, I would like but there hasn’t been any action like a savings plan, etc.  He has to be able to be a provider not just get a nice ring.  So the question you need to first ask yourself is why do you want to be entangled with a man with no active plan.  You can’t sex your way through a marriage when its time to pay bills or eat. Speaking of bills, how do you pay them? I know with money but are you on time?  What is on your credit report?  If its bad are you working with an organization to rebuild it.  What is the man you want doing about his bills?  Do either of you save?  Do you have a nest egg saved that if one of you lose a job you have a back up plan?  Let’s be real there many people who marry who don’t have this in place but that doesn’t mean its right.  Get clear the foundation you want to build. Is that foundation strong.  If there are cracks than one or both of you have work to do.  So an ultimatum is not necessary, you aren’t ready.  Contrary to popular belief my husband had a spread sheet plan which means he had numbers and what he needed in place and as our life took shifts he shifted the numbers around and he still does.  He has taught me a lot but that’s one of his strengths that I was aware of before we married.  He also knew of anything financial that I had whether good or bad and we devised a plan together to make it stronger.  He nor I ran away from these important conversations.  Please make sure you do the same.

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Ring Wars

Yes women actually compare themselves to one another.  Oh the shock.  So when the time is right for you and your man to talk about rings be clear.  Every big rock doesn’t mean stable marriage.  Every little rock stays strong for 20 years or more either.  Ring size and choice have so many dimensions.  There are women walking around with rings looking like mountains but if you know your diamonds you can see that the actual diamond is cloudy. Get to know rings.  Don’t just leave the knowledge up to that man.  If you are the type that would have an issue with a certain size than speak up but beware that your man may not take too kindly to it.  Rings are supposed to be tokens of his love and what he can afford, what he saved, etc.  Do NOT try to get what your best friend has.  My best friend and I are both married but my ring has a story of its own and was made by my husband to the likes he knew I would like.  Her ring has her own story.  The stories do not need to match.  Your friend and your marriage will  not be the same so stop the comparison game now.

New Year, No more the Girlfriend

If your due date for that ring is Christmas, than what happens?  Are you prepared to leave this man the day of or the day after?  I would really take to heart what I said about the foundation of your relationship and more importantly yourself.  Where have you traveled to?  Do you have a passport?  Do you have a business action in plan for a business venture you have been trying to get off the ground?  What does your personal empire look like? Have you completed school?  These dreams need to be either in motion or completed. Marriage is not the end all be all.  Your title or new last name is not the only thing you need in life.  You need a life goal and to be able to have a life that can be joined to someone else as well as a life that you can have even after you married.  How many wives stop working out who were super active before?  How many were in school than stopped?  We all get in ruts but you must have the mindset to continue to grow as a person while you grow as a couple.  Life is about balance.  You can’t tip the marital scale and then fail in your work or personal life.

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Listen relationships are gray.  There is no cookie cutter pattern that you can model and then have a “perfect” relationship.  What I think is too long may not fit your time line. However make decisions on ultimatums be about what you want, what you will settle for or put up with.  No one has to live with your decisions but you.  As much as you love who you are with be sure that the love and effort matches on all sides.  There is no need to have wasted years with someone in your gut and actions says they aren’t on the same page as you.  With a few days left in the holiday season take some time out with YOU and figure out what you want than you can see if the boo you have been loving on all year-long and beyond is capable of giving you the love you deserve.