Mother’s Day Do NOTS

So yes it’s Mother’s Day and the day can be super beautiful however there are a few things you don’t want to do:

  1. If a woman isn’t pregnant or at least hasn’t confirmed it with you, do NOT ask her when she is ready to have some.  Not every woman wants a kid.  This day can actually be hard for women who have been trying to have kids and for whatever reason can’t.  It’s simple, don’t ask about another woman’s uterus.  Let me help you out further, its called MIND YOUR BUSINESS.  It doesn’t matter if it your daughter in law, cousin, etc do NOT ask.  It’s non of your concern.  You are not helping by asking.  You are being OFFENSIVE.  I said it and it’s true.  MIND your own business.
  2. Don’t call mom-everyone knows you have to at least call.  So for those who still have her here, call her.  There are moms who have strained relationships that don’t get calls from their kids even on these types of days.  Its unfortunate.  You and your mom don’t have to agree but you can agree to say thanks and hi.
  3. Please refrain from male bashing.  I know it’s mom day and its a day of reflection. Some use this day to come at the father of their kids to remind him of what you do. Let me give you some advice, that man knows and some how will not care.  Stop wasting your energy on him.  Enjoy your day.  Yes you do a lot or even all of the work, but coming at his neck won’t make him realize the error of his ways. Tagging him all day on social media won’t either.  If you have been fine this far without him, keep it pushing.  Why even give him your energy?!
  4. Do not give your kids a hard time about the gifts gotten.  There is a mom would love your portion.  Stop with the pressure.  Not everyone can afford to lavish their mom with diamonds.  I love my mom and if I had it like that I would give her the world. However some moms make it a big extra where the giving comes from a place of not wanting to hear your mouth over real desire to show love.  Take it easy on your family and loved ones.  It’s not a competition.
  5. Chain mom posts.  We are beautiful mom, the tag a beautiful mom is not needed. We all work hard.  We all provide constant love for those who choose to.  Do not send chain texts.  We ALL know what day it is.  I am surrounded by a lot of amazing women in my life and a great network of mom friends.  I actually send them individual texts if I don’t call.  I know they are all being loved on but individual texts makes it more personal.  Not only that 9 times out of 10 you don’t even change the name and they know.  If you love them like that, them send them amazing text messages and leave it at that.

This is a simple list.  There are probably a dozen more things you SHOULD know.  Rule of thumb is to make sure you do for mom what you want someone to do for you.  That is the golden rule anyway.  Love on mom and leave drama at home.  Even if you and mom aren’t in full speaking terms its best to call or drop by and leave than to stay and mess up both of your day.

Lastly Mother’s Day is always best when dads who are around participate.  Nothing is more beautiful than a man showing his children how they need to honor their mother. My husband has lost his mom but the kids saw what they needed to do to honor me even at the point of death.  Teaching is always happening.  It’s important for kids to know how to make it work.  So do your part!!

Continue reading Mother’s Day Do NOTS

Mother’s Day Gift Giving Guide

Mother’s Day is around the corner literally and the struggle to get mom the perfect gift is on.  I have a few suggestions to help you along the way, but first let’s think what would mom want.  The gift that you give should be about making mom smile.  No amount of gifts will ever pay your mom or even can contribute to the amount of love that your mom gives to you and has given to you.  But be creative and think about HER.  This is the time to make her smile.  Do not get your mom anything related to health unless she has requested it.  I am a fit mom or trying to be it would not offend me because I am actively on that journey.  However showing up with a fitbit for a mom who is not ready for that or hasn’t expressed it could send mom into a whirlwind.  She may need it but the day is for things SHE wants.  Tread light on gifts that could be offensive.  Moms are still women and women and their body image is an issue.  Let mom get to a point than support her but Mother’s Day may not be the time.

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  1. Flowers-even if your mom gives you the whole I don’t want or need anything nothing says thanks than a flowers.  They are a simple but thoughtful gesture that makes everyone’s day.  There are flower stands all over the place even some along the road.  Don’t go to moms without any.
  2. Hand written notes even in cares are still appreciated.  Moms want to know what’s on your heart.  Cards are beautiful and a lot of moms save them but your words are best.
  3. Gift cards-If you get them and they can be gotten just about anywhere at least make sure they are stores she likes.  Please do not get her something that you want.  That is not cool. Let mom do her thing and shop and get what she wants.
  4. Macaroni Pictures-these are okay if your child is in elementary school, however if you are grown and you are making her something let it be from the heart and not something you scribbled down last-minute.  She is worth energy in your creativity.
  5. Upgrades-if you plan on getting mom a tablet or new phone do try to program it and spend some time helping her operate it.
  6. Church-moms love seeing their kids in church.  So go if you can.  Expect the parking lots to be full between Mothers day, Easter and Christmas these are high church times.
  7. Food-get upgraded favorites.  This is the time where mom can indulge in a few tasty treats.  Chocolate is good so make it a good purchase for her.  She would appreciate it.
  8. If you have small children and even if you’re co-parenting, she may not be your mom but you can help your child or children get her something nice. Kids don’t have jobs but they do understand getting mom something.  Don’t disappoint your child trying to “stick” it to your child’s mother.  You may not like her but you laid down and had a baby honor her for the work she puts in when you don’t have the responsibility of having to do most of the care for your child.
  9. Give mom a break-do you know that allowing her to go out WITHOUT the kids for a few hours is a gift in itself.  How about a nap?  How about dinner cooked if you don’t want to brave the restaurants?  Anything that takes the load off of her would be super appreciated.
  10. Pampering-if your mom loves a little manicure or pedicure or maybe she’s so busy handling it all that she doesn’t have the time, a certificate to get these things done is great, or make her appointment and take her there.  Relaxation is always a great idea.

The idea is taking some time to love on mom.  Don’t make it about you.  Make it about her.  Give her a break. Show up with flowers.  There are so many that wish they could give flowers to their mom and instead will have to give flowers on a grave.  While you still have her, shower her with love and gifts.  She deserves them!! Happy Mother’s Day to all the ladies that put in that hard work when appreciation is far and few!!!

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My littlest almost killed me…

So not really.  She actually had nothing to do with it.  I am ready to share my birth story of my youngest.  She will be 3 tomorrow.  I and my husband was not planning on having another one.  It depends on who you ask but I wanted to get my tubes tied and once I made the appointment what I didn’t do was protect myself until the tube tying process took place.  None of our kids were planned.  Not one. With that being said, not one came in with this beautiful story of love and acceptance from the beginning.  Let me explain what I mean by that before all the moms of the world come at me.  When you have the notion to plan your children, it’s an expecting welcoming.  When you don’t you have to get to a place of acceptance.  For me legitimately it wasn’t as easy as the text books make it sound. I love and had love for them, how could I not, but it took a hot minute for me to accept that the baby was coming and to embrace what I was mentally and emotionally dealing with.  I know my moms understand what I mean.  Having kids is no easy task.  Thinking about the pain, the stress, and just being protective over this baby from the time you find out until your life or theirs end is a LOT.

So as I began to accept that a new baby was on its way, my stress level went up.  I started having migraines.  They were debilitating.  I went to work everyday in spite of being in the worst possible pain.  Then one day my boss was talking to me and I stopped him and walked away.  I was saying to myself what in the holy world did you do?  I was smart with it when I said it but I didn’t mean any harm by it.  I went to the bathroom and I am in there crying hysterically.  No one knew I was in there so I had to get myself up and get back to the office. I got back and I looked dark, I felt dark and I called my husband and told him please take me straight to the hospital.  I get there and they hook me up to the monitors.  I fell asleep after monitoring my baby and finding out she was okay.  I woke up it was 735pm and I had been in the hospital since 11am. I don’t remember what doctors or nurses had been in their to check on me.  When I woke up and realized what time it was I knew they were going to keep me.  If they thought I could have medication and go home surely I would be home by then. The doctor came in and her face was flushed.  So I started crying off the bat. Here I had a blood clot in my left lower brain.  I was devastated.  My husband came as I heard the news and I couldn’t even think.

As I was admitted and several neurologist came in, my life changed at that moment.  I would have to take Lovenox via injections two times a day. I hate needles.  Like me and needles could never go together.  I thought, I would have to stop working,  but I didn’t. After a few days and some rest at home I was back at work.  The issue now is that I have to get my blood drawn every 2 days to make sure I am in the levels I need to be to be safe. This was the most irritating thing in the world.  I had to keep going back to the pharmacy getting new shots every time the range was wrong.  I did this a few tines a week.  All the while, my little bit was perfectly fine and baking.  Back and forth I was in the hospital.  I made up in my mind this was the last child.  I made the decision for me. Even if my husband had disagreed and he didn’t I wasn’t having a child by any man, science, or immaculate conception. Team NO MORE BABIES was in full effect.  It wasn’t my babies fault but my pregnancies haven’t been easy and I personally am done with being pregnant.

As we got close to full term, I had to meet with a specialized team of surgeons.  All 3 of my kids were C-section births.  I couldn’t just plop into the hospital to have her with a blood clot in my brain.  No ma’am.  We set the date for February 17th.  I knew when and what time.  The day before I had to stop my Lovenox at the right time.  They ran extra tests but then there was an emergency that came ahead of me and I could pushed back. So as my husband and parents there we had to wait.  They wheeled me in and surgery went well.  I had to have blood on stand by.  Shout out to my special donor.  He drove from Lebanon PA to Philadelphia to make sure I would be okay.  Right after her birth everything seemed fine, until after recovery.  I get to my room, my husband, kids, and mother in law are there and they check me to make sure all was well.  Well, it wasn’t. They made everyone leave my room, the doctor stabbed me in my leg with drugs, and reached her hand in and pulled out this almost baby sized blood clot.  The worst of what we feared had happened.  They got me stable and I went on with all the newborn baby stuff.  A day later I went to take a shower and I felt this pain like labor.  I pull on the cord, staff came in running, another baby sized blood clot and they repeat what they did the day before.  So back on my Lovenox to make sure I was safe.

Discharge day was great.  I thought the worst had passed.  I get home and I am getting comfortable. Some family came over to visit.  My son is super excited to see me, he’s about 2 at this point.  He jumps on top of my belly before we could catch him, I said I had a C-section.  I scream out in pain.  I tell my husband please take me and the new baby upstairs. I get in the bed and I felt a pop.  It was the worst thing I could have ever felt.  I blacked out. I blacked out several times.  My husband called the ambulance although I asked him not to.  Had he not I wouldn’t even be here writing this.  I wake up to see this tall, strong, sexy man holding me who is not my husband.  I am like hi, who are you?  It was a fire fighter.  I am like lord I am in pain, you ain’t got time to admire this man but hey I am human right? So enough of looking at this stranger and its off to the hospital.

Back to blacking out I get to the hospital and they already know about me.  I was the most riskiest patient on the floor.  I was the whitest black woman they had ever seen and my doctor told me.  I had lost a lot of blood and had internal bleeding but the issue is they can’t do surgery because with this blood clot I could bleed out and die.  I had to wait. So they made me comfortable and after a few hours I began blood transfusions.  My husband had to take care of all 3 kids including a breastfed newborn on his own.  I am going through the worst pain in life, holding onto life, and worrying about feeding my daughter.  I had the best nurses, they would actually pump my breast for me so my child could get what she needed.  I was in the hospital for over a week.  I am just super glad to be alive.

I was still under a doctor’s watchful eye for about 6 months following that encounter.  I still get migraines and when I do it’s an immediate call to my doctor.  The blood clot hasn’t gotten bigger or disappeared so its something I have to always be aware.  I breastfed this little girl and took her to work everyday for 6 months.  Yes to work with me.  I handled an office, clients, and nursed a newborn without missing a beat.  Then at 6 months we put her in daycare with her brother and she won’t drink from a bottle.  I had made enough milk for her but she wouldn’t drink.  It got bad that we had to give her diluted apple juice until I got home.  When it began apparent with no matter what we did, I had to temporarily work from home.  She kept nursing until a little after 2.  I prayed and asked God to help me wean her.  On tv, it always looks so easy but in real life it wasn’t at all. She has progressed well.  The only issue is that after my husband had been home with her right after birth when we came home she wouldn’t go to him or anyone else.  I mean no one.  You could hold her for tops 5 minutes.  She was a mommy’s girl.  Now a days, she’s a daddy’s girl and I am still struggling with that.  I wanted her and still want her to be more independent and trust and believe shes’ getting there but I do miss the snuggle days.

Noelle is a ball of fire.  She gives the best side eyes.  She has attitude and if she doesn’t like she doesn’t act fake.  She just walks off like she didn’t hear you but she does.  She is lovable.  She has the sweetest face in the world and knows you know she is cute.  She is our little love bug and we are happy that we have gotten through these challenges.  The best thing I got out of the whole thing was a feisty, beautiful, and intelligent little girl.  She is the last thing our family needed and we didn’t know we did.  I love that little munchkin and I almost gave my life for her.  So happy 3rd birthday to my little noodle, Noelle.

Rewind

Yes its a late night.  I finally got the toddler in her own bed.  I have been doing bedtime boot camp so we can get some sleep around here. So I had a few seconds to go through my old journals.  Let me say to anyone who writes in multiple journals as I do, be prepared for a flow of emotion.  You should also have anything around you that evokes happiness because often times takin that walk back can cause such an array of emotions.  For me I immediately go to music.  For me music is all over the place.  So I made a quick playlist to get through.

So while looking back I found a few things that are recurring themes.  I am a very episodic person so when things hit the fan it reminds me of another similar situation. That can be dangerous if you’re not a solid person.  I through counseling etc. have found the ability to go back without staying there.  For some others the mind will allow you to stay stuck.  Now back to the rewind, so I am in my journal and I come across a few entries that made me laugh.  I thought to myself I am glad that whatever day that came into question I am super glad that all I had was paper and pen.  Life is like that sometimes.  It’s not perfect and wrapped up for show.  Life sucks.  Life is hard, but there’s always at least one thing to make you see the good in the world.

So if you’re struggling to see the good in life, it’s time to take a time out.  It’s okay I promise to think of what YOU need.  A big picture in that is to know who you are.  As humans we change.  We can be who we want.  So if you don’t like something its okay to figure that out.  So back to my journal, I curse in it, I can tell and feel the pain of my words.  There are good days in there too.  I love it all.  I love seeing sides of myself that are real, raw and unedited.  They are some of the best parts of me.  It’s the struggle of my life that has produced some of the very best of me.  The new feat for me is allowing others to see the happier side of me.  That’s the craziest and most vulnerable part.  Some people are super happy and cheerful naturally.  I am more reserved and calculating.  So unless I am in a truly comfortable place you see the closed off version of me.

This is the message of today.  Maybe its just for me but I highly doubt it because when I get tried the most I know it’s for someone else.  I know that telling on me and being open to whispers and talks that its super important not to erase the blog.  That would be super easy.  So as you start your week and you are looking for this great motivation from someone who appears to have it altogether please take the time to look in that mirror.  The person in the mirror knows you more than anyone.  The person in the mirror has a story that hasn’t been written yet.  The person in the mirror has ALL that they need on the inside to make the life they want.  No one on the outside of that mirror can stop the potential inside.  So take a deep breath, wipe your tears, and stop letting fear stop you.  The key is taking one step and not letting your emotions and head play with you.  Your head plays with you way past when you allowed others to pull on you.  So what is it that you want to see inside of you change?  We all have desires on the outside that we want but there are a few things on the inside that have to take place to make room for the good.  Take note of those inward changes first.  If you are a miserable person, deal with that first.  There is a source that although may look like is someone else’s fault shows where YOU have to do better.

Take  that junk you are carrying and give it a name.  Know what you have inside of you trust me others know that’s why they feel the need to call you out on it.  Some people mean well but it’s always super easy to call someone to the rug but turn it around and call your own junk to the table and sort it.  As you challenge yourself to deal with it, be sure to replace it with better.  Replace it with the things that you need like joy, patience.  This is not a cookie cutter plan.  You will feel pain.  You will feel like you are walking alone.  You are.  How many are assigned to the same pain?  Not many.  So if you’re waiting for your misery train to pull up they will but they usually come with some other bags that you and I know you can’t afford to travel with.

Wrap yourself with a better security blanket than the bad habits that no longer serve you.  Love on yourself. That starts by speaking well of yourself. Not the whole I look a hot mess and then put pressure on a mate or a friend to hold you in higher regards that you won’t hold for yourself.  Begin to watch what you say.  Begin to care about what you put on, eat, drink, etc.  Take some mental timeouts.  There are times when I know I am being ambushed and I need a moment to gather my thoughts but because we live in a fast pace society I just keep on pushing.  Pushes are good until you are being pushed into something you haven’t cleared in your heart.

Flex Your No Muscles

I have to share a little battle with ya’ll.  One because I need to get it off my chest and the other is because I just want to.  I don’t get it.  I have some really great friends.  It’s the associates that sometimes misinterpret their place.  For me the line is clear.  If I am not the one to have you around my kids, most likely you are an associate.  I take my kids and who they are around very seriously.

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So I got 2 invitations to do some things this weekend. The one is from a friend.  They are someone who knows how I am.  Asks me and my husband at the same time and can be around my kids by themselves because the trust levels are high.  The other is an associate. He or she has never been around my kids or in my home.  That in itself speaks volumes. It’s the holidays so I am all for gathering together.  It can be fun.  However don’t pull a stunt telling me anything.  I think it’s a glitch in how I work in general.  Respect lines can’t get crossed with me.  Once you do it’s an issue that I struggle with resolving. I am working on it which is why I also am direct.  It helps people and myself to stay in a certain place.  So as this associate told me she’s coming to my home.  I wanted to verbally bury her.  What house?  Whose house?  Clearly not mine.  This is how it was worded: “hey girl I want to see you so I am coming to your house and if you could make me some dinner that would be good since I will be getting off of work late.  How is 7?”  So I stepped back mentally.  Is this person joking.  So I straight up asked.  The associate said that they was tired and had me on their mind and knows I cook because of the kids.  I was baffled.  My best friend wouldn’t have even done that she would have at least asked.  Word choice matters to me.  I am quirky like that.  Take it or leave it.  However I barely know you.  I barely see you.  Catching up is a beautiful thing.  How about set a date up and make it happen.  This invite yourself thing doesn’t and will never work for me.

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I kindly informed the associate that no they would not be coming to my home.  They can’t simply invite themselves and it’s during the week which means we have a nightly routine that won’t be interrupted.  I asked why they felt like they could be so intrusive.  The response was because you seem like the person who wouldn’t care. I informed them that to come over unexpected especially during our week schedule to eat and we don’t have that type of relationship seems intrusive.  I barely know this person’s last name.  I also informed the associate that we should definitely have a built relationship before I start inviting them around my children.  I didn’t mean any harm but I do NOT let random people around my children.  Anybody I generally have around them are people who I have personally tested their spirits and are comfortable with.  I don’t even allow certain people in my own family access to my children let alone someone who can’t vouch for.

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The moral of the story is that some people believe they can occupy your space and they simply can’t.  I am okay with backing people out of my space.  We do not have drama in our home and if it is someone who I don’t know that is openly inviting the potential.  My kids are very open and welcoming and I will not allow them to be tampered with in their spirits by anyone.  Be careful who you invite in your space and their motives.  This associate may turn into a great friend but until that day happens, back up.

Mom Tributes

I love you more than I love myself.  I’m working on that.  You always taught me to make sure I was secure.  I want to be the mom that you are but in my own way.  You paved the way for me to know what real love is. I am honored by your presence.  I love the way you stand behind me as a force but you allow me my own strings to reign.  I love how you always know the right words whether its a praise, push or small voice that says that’s not it.  You have never told me NO.  You only said that’s not it to empower me to make good decisions.  You never allowed me to not have a say in what happened in my life.  I feel like I can do anything.  I love you mom I wish the world had the same type of love I have in you. Love Amanda.

I love you because you are love.  I have never had to think I was alone in the world. You were always a light and a guide.  As you aren’t here to share in my dreams I know you are watching over me.  I love you mom and I pray to be half the mom you were to me. Love always Carrie Ann.

Mom, there aren’t enough words to express how much you have been to me. I love the fact that you are just so calm where if I was in the same situation I don’t handle things as graciously as you do.  I’m working on that. I love the fact that you never raised your voice. So many are yelled and scared into submission you just simply made a statement and we knew better.  I love how patience with me you have been over the years.  I was a mess especially in my 20’s and you did NOT disown me or belittle me.  You gave me my space and let me know if I needed you, you would be there.  Thanks is such a small task for all that you have done.  I love you.  Michelle Lynn

I wish you were here.  I love you.  I need you.  God needed you more.  I pray that I am able to be half the mom you were to me.  I cherish every last moment up until your dying day.  I honor you now as I have honored you when you were here. I have no regrets of words not said.  I meant every I love you I said.  Mom, please be honored in my life.  I love you… Anonymous

 

 

Do Everything Mom!

Moms really are the best multi-taskers there is.  When I was going back into the working world after being a stay at home mom for almost 3 years I would be asked what skills did I obtain during my break. I would always highlight what a day would be like without getting too personal with potential employers.  End of day moms are expected to do it all but there are moments when we have to let the bottom fall.

Yes I said it, judge me but you have to allow some things to hit the ground.  As much as every mom has an imaginary S on their chest, the reality is that we are human.  We will forget, we aren’t always available, and some times we are just incapable.  We are strong but we aren’t statues.  So when is it time to let some things go?  Here is my list:

  1. Yes you will always be mommy, but when grown kids get grown or even when they are teenagers and “get grown” sometimes the hands off approach is more beneficial. There are many times when you can assist but any assistance that stops a grown person from being what they need to be needs to stop.  If you stop paying their grown rent, they will be forced to get a job.  If you stop rescuing them out of ALL their stresses they will grow up and deal.
  2. When your personal health is in jeopardy, please stop.  I have kept going even when I was sick.  Let’s face it moms don’t always have a supply of folks to call because they are ill that will come to their rescue.  So when you are down, and can get help, get it. You don’t have anything to prove. Learn to say NO and don’t let mom guilt get to you!
  3. When it’s something where you are going to uphold them in their wrong. It’s one thing to agree with your child grown or not but we all know right from wrong.  If you find yourself in a situation where being their mom means putting up with their wrong, abort.  You can love your child but not love the things they do, get into, or the people they associate with.  Learn that valuable lesson and step back.
  4. When the lesson for your child is more important than your ego.  Sometimes as mom we want to do it all so much we forget that everything we do is a lesson.  So if the lesson is going to better improve the child grown or not, than let it be.  Don’t let your I just want to get it done go over the lesson.

One of the things my own mother has taught me is that we need to raise our children for the world.  Meaning there are a lot of things we want from our children that are sometimes for selfish reasons.  We see our kids being disrespectful and we think it’s cute so we don’t correct it.  The issue is later down the road they continue with the bad behavior and someone else now has to deal with your little precious and they aren’t all that precious.  A mom’s job is never always as clean-cut as we would like but you have to create balance with ourselves and our family.  There are so many over worked moms that don’t have the means to cut out all of the stress.  I am a firm believer that where you can cut, please cut!!