Both of my children became freshman this year! My son starts high-school on September 5th and my daughter started her first year of college this past Monday. I am so proud! I am so excited for them! And I am so feeling something that I can’t name yet. I imagine if fear, heart-break, anxiety, longing, and uncertainty all had a big orgy, my feeling right now would be the love child of such event.
I NEVER IN A MILLION YEARS COULD HAVE RELATED TO ANYONE GOING THROUGH THIS UNTIL THIS MOMENT. And to be honest, I am sick and tired of people who do not have children or whose children are not in college yet telling me that they know how I feel. I KNOW they are trying to offer me support through all of this and I appreciate the sentiments but really, you have no idea what this is doing to me.
I cry ALL.THE.TIME. I cry out of pride. I cry out of excitement. I cry out of missing my baby. I cry reading Dr. Seuss. I cry at the Subaru commercial (That fucking Subaru commercial). I cry when I remember the commercial about Peter coming home for Christmas! I cry at the idea that after college, my girl will be on her own. I cry out of anticipation of my son joining the Army after high-school. I cry out of worry that my babies will become they kind of adult child I became who didn’t visit Mom nearly enough. I cry out of regret for wasting my time and energy crying over the sad stuff when there is so much to be happy for. I cry that I am allowing my sad feelings to over-power my pride and excitement at times. Then I go back to thinking about the pride…and I cry all over again.
In short, I am a fucking train wreck.
(I am linking up with Mama’s Losing It this week to share what I have learned from my kids. If you would like to link up, go here or click on the button on my sidebar)!!
As I think about all that my children have learned and will continue to learn, I can’t help but think of all the things my children have taught me. Thank you, Caitlin and Chandler for teaching me that:
- My gut instincts as a parent are right. NO MATTER WHAT MY FRIENDS, FAMILY, OR OTHER PARENTS THINK, DO, OR SAY ABOUT ME.
- I was right to spend and entire summer reading the Bible to my kids while they whined and complained.
- I was right to tell my daughter “no” to wearing shorts with “cheer” printed on the ass.
- I was right to dump the Waffle Blocks back out on the floor and yell at my kids to clean them up after my Mother-In-Law cleaned them up as quickly as she could so they kids wouldn’t have to.
- I was right to force my children go to the hospital to say “goodbye” and to give kisses to their Grandma even though they were scared and felt uncomfortable.
- I was right to call my son home from a friend’s house to clean the spoon he left in the sink.
- I was right to go to work after my daughter was born
- I was right to quit my job when my kids were both very young to stay home with them.
- I was right to have my children grow up with dogs as pets (and tree frogs, hamsters, fancy mice, birds, fish, hermit crabs, geckos, a guinea pig, and fire-bellied toads).
- I was right to make my daughter work to earn money to buy her own bike when she was 5 years old.
- I was right to give my kids cell phones when other parents told me they were too young for them (it isn’t about spoiling them…it is about safety)!!
- I was right to show my kids the creepy picture of the pedophile that lives 2 streets over and make them commit that scary face to memory.
- I was right to explain to my young kids exactly what those sick bastards do to children in detail.
- I was right to talk openly with my children about sex and drugs.
- I was right to cry in front of my children
- I was right to demonstrate to my kids how imperfect I am
- I was right to drill it in their heads that there is NOTHING in the world that they can do that would make me love them any less.
- I was right to keep my judgments to myself and simply thank them for telling me somethings that were difficult for them to say.
- I was wrong to scream at them out of anger and frustration
- I was wrong to not bring them to see their Grandma more often simply because I didn’t feel like it.
- I was wrong to call my daughter a bitch on more than one occasion
- I was wrong some of the times I chose to sit in my room alone instead of in the living room with them.
- I was wrong for not cooking dinner because I was too lazy
- I was wrong to never have them wake up to a kitchen full of breakfast food.
- I was wrong to never have them come off the bus to a plateful of warm cookies
- I was wrong to allow even one day go by without telling them that they are the most important things in my entire life
- I was wrong to rationalize my behavior when I wasn’t the perfect parent
- I was wrong to beat myself up each and every time I wasn’t the perfect parent
- I was wrong to not be a better Christian role model for my children
- I was wrong to think that the joys of a clean house would help me overcome the hurt of my daughter being away.
- I was wrong to roll my eyes when people told me, “Cherish these moments because it goes by too fast.”
- I was wrong to play “Cat’s In The Cradle” over and over again this week!!
I am an imperfect Christian
I wonder what life after death is really like
I hear my prayers answered in songs on the radio
I see my mom in my dreams
I want my children to know Jesus
I am an imperfect Christian
I pretend I am brave when I truly am scared
I feel God’s presence every single day
I touch people’s hearts when I can
I worry that my kids don’t know how much I love them
I cry at the drop of a dime
I am an imperfect Christian
I understand that Jesus died for me but I don’t feel worthy
I say that only God knows what is in people’s hearts
I dream about my mom walking again
I try not to judge others
I hope my children get to know Jesus
I am an imperfect Christian
- A Simple Rule to Avoid a Christ-less Christianity (christcenteredteaching.wordpress.com)
- A Christian’s daily walk with the Lord Jesus (sacollinsvogan.wordpress.com)
- Pursuing God’s Presence (liveyourfullerlife.wordpress.com)
- The Human Christian (eliezer40.com)
- Kamal Saleem: A Muslim Cries Out to Jesus (thenlistblog.com)
- Mourning, Meekness, and Spiritual Hunger (Mt. 5:4-6) (raymondjclements.wordpress.com)
- He Knew Just What I Needed (for a time like this) (virtuouswoman73.wordpress.com)
I am patting myself on the back right now.
Since I began my 4 Week (Not Weight Loss) Challenge on Monday, I have not cheated more than one teaspoon of peanut butter and one lick of frosting (more on the frosting in a few minutes).
Day one was easy to follow because I was pumped. Also because my diet has 6 small meals a day and since I only ate 2 large meals/day before this challenge, it seems like I was always eating! I do eat often; every 2 hours.
Day two was not bad at all…nothing to report.
Day three? I wanted to pig the fuck out and skip my cardio. I was feeling the exhaustion and I wanted something buttery!! But I reminded myself of my goals and it got easier!
Yesterday was day 4 and I totally nailed it. Did everything right and reminded myself that Cheat Day is Saturday! Woohoo!
Today is day 5. I lost 3 pounds so far! I am totally okay with sticking to my diet today because I know that I can eat whatever I want tomorrow. This is good because we are going to my daughter’s college orientation and it will be hard to stick to the diet while I am out.
But a couple glitches were thrown my way and I am having an anxiety attack now.
My friend called and asked me if we were still on for tonight. I have it in my calender that she and I are going to the movies. I am fine with that. I never want the popcorn. Give me coffee and I am happy as a pig in shit. She said, “Dinner and drinks.” Which translates to Maria’s.
For those of you who do not live around these parts, Maria’s is unarguably the best damned Mexican Restaurant near me. People have tried to argue with me about this and they lose every time. If I have to drag your ass to Maria’s and shove the Holy Moly with the guacamole down your throat (I don’t care if you don’t like avocados…it is THAT good), force a beef burrito enchilada style down your throat while you are still trying to swallow the Holy Moly then funnel the pomarita down your gullet to prove to you that it is the best, then damnit, I will do just that. And in the end, you will tell me just how fucking right I was. Period. End of discussion. But beware…Maria’s has a “3 Margarita Limit” for a reason!!!! They are oooohhhhh soooooo good and so damn strong.
I am trying to figure out how to do this. Saying “no” to Maria’s is simply not an option. For starters, did I mention that the food is really good there and the Margarita’s are even better? Second, it is a tradition that Meg and I go to Maria’s. We always go there when we go out. One time the place was closed when we pulled up and we literally sat in the parking lot and stared at each other for 5 full minutes in silence with tears in our eyes. Finally Meg broke the silence and said, “Now what the fuck are we going to do?” It took us another 8 minutes to decide on another restaurant and we were miserable bitches to the poor waitress.
“Ma’am, I KNOW this is an Italian Restaurant but is it too much to ask for a Holy Moly with guac, a Pomarita and a beef burrito enchilada style? This IS America, after all. We are not REALLY in Italy!!”
Meg and I have recruited an uncountable number of people to this place. It is like a fucking Maria’s cult and we are the leaders. When we go there, the waitress doesn’t even ask us what we want. She just brings us our orders. If I go with someone other than Meg, the waitress gets all sorts of confused but she still nails my order every time.
So, this is one time when I MUST cheat. I have decided that although I have stuck with my diet awesomely today and although I will be away from home tomorrow, my cheat day will be today instead of tomorrow for this week. I can still make this work.
Shit! Next week is Caitlin’s grad party. On Sunday. It is being catered. That means my cheat day will have to be Sunday instead of Saturday. That means that there will be 8 days in between cheat days instead of 6!!!!
I need a Xanax.
One last thing before I sign off here…
Yesterday, my daughter found a cookbook.
Today she made cupcakes for the staff at work. Lemon cupcakes with a strawberry cream cheese frosting. I told her to be sure she takes ALL the cupcakes to work. She promised she would. I wish my daughter wasn’t a big fat liar.
I told her to make sure she cleaned out the bowl that she made the frosting in so that I wouldn’t want to lick it clean (I already had one lick). She said she did. She didn’t lie. She did. But in the fridge…
I opened the lid to look at it.
I know…this is not her fault. Nicki, accept responsibility and do not place blame!
I did not cheat. I had none (aside from that one lick I just mentioned)!
And I know one graduate who won’t be having a graduation party for torturing her mother!
- Top Weight Loss Mistakes Revealed (prweb.com)
- It doesn’t have to be all-or-nothing (babiesandbriefcases.com)
- How to Stay Motivated to Lose Weight, And Why This Doesn’t Happen Easily (mariaslastdiet.com)
- Top Ways to Ruin Your Weight Loss Diet (prweb.com)
- Strategies for weight loss – a critical look at a real life weight loss journey (threev.com.au)
- Shredded Beef Burritos (thoughtsalonglifeshighway.com)
- One Week Weight Loss Challenge Update (shayxmate.wordpress.com)
- Guest blog: Weight Loss Challenge | Week 5 | Darren & Kirsten Lovelock (simplysupplementsblog.com)
- Latest Little Challenge and a day in the life of a Personal Trainer…… (connierichards.wordpress.com)
- How Changing My Goals Helps Me In Achieving Them. (thenlistblog.com)
- day 13: how I’m shedding my weight (paperclipsuk.wordpress.com)
- Day 40: LOOKING BACK INTO THE WEEK (muponisi.wordpress.com)
- Sorry, No “Before” Pics (thenlistblog.com)
- Things I do every single day to keep the weight away (threev.com.au)
- Tonight’s Diet, Exercise, and Measurements (thenlistblog.com)
A chapter in my baby’s life came to an end and now on to another chapter! I was so proud of her, I thought I was going to burst. I didn’t burst. But I cried. A lot.
I was okay when she put her cap on.
I was okay when she put her gown on.
I lost it when she put her silver sash (earned for graduating Magna Cum Laude) and her cords (earned for Spanish Honor Society) on.
Congratulations, Caitlin. I am so damned proud of you!
I know my tears seemed silly.
I know my kisses were annoying.
But I PROMISE you that when you have a child graduate, you will completely understand and you will become the silly and annoying mommy that I was yesterday!!!
I should say that it doesn’t take much for the water works to turn on with me. I am an incredibly emotional person. Consider yourself warned!
5) Yesterday was a horrible Lupus day. Everything in my entire body hurt and my strength was non-existent. Until about midnight when the Captain and Cokes set in.
4) My husband farted when I got into bed at 3:30 this morning. Luckily for me, we had a call and I had a reason to leave the stench. Now my bowel is more irritable than normal and payback is a bitch!
3) My mother-in-law who has a nose like a dog will be in my truck today and I somehow have to make it smell like someone has not had a cigarette in there because she doesn’t know I smoke.
1) My baby girl went from this
ALL IN THE BLINK OF AN EYE!
AND TODAY, SHE IS GRADUATING FROM HIGH SCHOOL!
I am going to be a blubbering mess!!
And now, because I have this commercial in my head, you can too. You are welcome. For the record, the writers of this commercial are heartless assbags!!!
I already cried watching this!
There is no doubt about it. Lupus sucks donkey balls. Hair loss and skin lesions are only the MINOR issues. Sure, those are the things that others see and may be the ONLY reminders to people around me that I am sick. But as horrible as they are, they really are just annoyances in the overall scheme of the illness.
The REAL issues are the ones that nobody sees. The joint pain, the neck pain, the headaches, the incredible fatigue, the BRAIN FOG…OMG, the brain fog! The frustration that I can’t do what I want or remember what it is I wanted to do. The frustration and…shit, I can’t remember the word. Give me a second here. Ummmm….the….the…dread? Sure, we’ll go with ‘dread’ because it is close enough. The frustration and the dread….no, that’s not it. The
shame guilt depression DESPAIR (I literally just went to Thesaurus.com to find that word)! The frustration and despair I feel every time I realize that I can’t do all the things I want to do. Fuck…the embarrassment of realizing that I just mentioned that a few sentences ago and didn’t remember that. The constant knowing that Lupus affects EVERY system in my body. Thinking about irreversible lung damage with every cough. Will every twinge in my chest turn into a heart attack? The FEAR that my illness will progress even more.
I am not afraid THAT this disease will claim my life. In fact, I have pretty much come to terms with the idea that it will some day. What I am afraid of is HOW it will claim my life. I won’t be feeling terrific one day and be gone the next. I am convinced my death will be a slow and painful one.
So, how the hell is this disease a BLESSING? How can I possibly look on the bright side here?
For starters, I have to. If I constantly obsess over the crap that has been handed to me or wonder if I did something to cause this (if only I didn’t go back to school, maybe I wouldn’t have been so stressed and that Lupus gene could have stayed quietly tucked away in my body, never to be seen), and never look for the blessings that came from this, I would simply give up. I would deprive myself, my family, my friends, and my Father in Heaven of all the good I have to offer (even if my offerings have to come in smaller doses now because I am feeling warn out). And the fact of the matter is that there IS good in this diagnosis. I have to really look for it and I am sure others around me don’t always see it the way I do but the good is there.
Perspective. I NOW understand that sweating the small stuff is a total waste of time. I also see how things that I used to see as big really are actually small in the over all scheme of things.
Self-Forgiveness. When I do things, I DO THINGS. Go big or stay home is my motto. If I am going to do something, I am going to do it right, damnit. Unfortunately, my way of having to do things perfectly causes stress and exertion and Lupus will jump all over that shit! Although I still beat myself up for not having the physical ability to do things perfectly, I am constantly reminding myself that it is out of necessity, not laziness, that I can’t do things the way I used to.
Self-Care. Call it selfishness if you want but I need to come first. As a wife, mother, sister, aunt, niece, daughter-in-law, sister-in-law, friend, EMT, EMS Captain, lover of animals and wanter of making the world a better place, this is THE MOST DIFFICULT gift for me to accept. Luckily for me, it is becoming easier for me to 1) believe that I AM important enough to put my needs first at times and 2) remember that if I put myself at risk, I won’t be available to help others and 3) rest without feeling guilty about it.
I don’t answer the phone when it rings if I don’t want to (and yes, I hear the phone ringing now. If it is you calling me, I am choosing to ignore it because I come first today). I say things like, “I am sorry but I won’t plan a family get-together at my house.” I still feel bad that I am letting others down and I hate that although people say they understand, the look of disappointment and frustration in their faces tell me that they will NEVER understand unless they have Lupus. Regardless, I am now able to say “no” when I couldn’t before. I also realize that when I say “no” to people, it is up to THEM, not me to handle that. I took care of me, now you can take care of you.
I spend a lot of time resting now. My husband wakes me up every day with my coffee, my meds, and sometimes breakfast. I spend most of my day propped up in my bed with my laptop, coffee, TV, and cross-stitching. I relax. A LOT. If I feel like it (and ONLY if I feel like it), I do some chores and run some errands. I go on ambulance calls when my body can handle it. I pamper myself and I allow my husband to pamper me.
Appreciation For My Family. And by “family” I mean my husband and my children. This goes back to Perspective. I come first (because I have to), my husband and children come second. If I have the physical and mental energy for the rest of the world, they all will come third, fourth, and so on. But if I don’t? I still love you. I still want good things to happen for you but sorry, you didn’t make the cut. I only have so much to give and I will give to me and the wing-nuts living under my roof that either put a ring on my finger or slid out of my vagina first. End of discussion. Why? Because when Lupus finally does take me away from this place, my husband and my children can say things like, “God, she was such hard work. She was bitchy, sometimes selfish, and totally neurotic but she loved and appreciated the fuck out of us!” And THAT is really all that matters to me.
AND SHE CLEANED THE ENTIRE HOUSE!!!
THANK YOU SO MUCH, MY BEAUTIFUL BABY GIRL!!! I LOVE THE CRAP OUTTA YOU!
Ever since my son was 3 months old (and my daughter was 4), I have been a volunteer FF/EMT for the fire department. I love the snot out of it! Yeah, there is the cliche…I love knowing that I am helping others…but I love it for more selfish reasons than that. Reasons other fire/EMS people are less likely to share because, well, it makes them sound selfish. What are those selfish reasons I speak of?
- Being part of a family that will call me “Crack-Head” one minute and would kill to help me out in a moment’s notice the next.
- Being called “Captain”
- Feeling like I am a part of something bigger than me
- Having people pull over for me because at that very moment in time, I am pretty important and I have someplace to be in a hurry.
- THE RUSH
- The unpredictable nature of the job
- Pride in knowing that I can do such an unpredictable job
- Wearing the uniform (See #’s 3 and 7)
- Having an excuse to leave anxiety-provoking family events when the pager goes off (Sorry Honey, 911 is open 24/7 . There is nothing I can do about it).
- Feeling productive
- Knowing that if my power goes out at home, I always have a place to stay with a generator.
Our fire department has an explorer post and for a while now, I have been hoping my son would join it but really thinking that it was just wishful thinking. Over the past few weeks, I have been REALLY promoting the idea. He has acted very interested but when it actually comes time to walk away from the video game to observe a drill to see if he would want to join, he is all, “MOM! I don’t want to join!”
Don’t get me wrong. I wouldn’t force him to join but I KNEW that he only denied interest because of that damned video game. I KNEW that if he tried it out, he would like it.
Last night, my husband tried to convince him to go again. He dug his heals in and refused and there was nothing that could be said to change his mind….except…
My husband: ”Mom won’t bother you again about it but she is disappointed that you won’t try it.”
My son: ”I will try it tonight for her. It can be her Mother’s Day present.”
I was sooooooo excited that he agreed and sooooooooo touched that he didn’t want me to feel disappointed. I thanked him profusely and promised that if he didn’t like it, he would never hear another word from me about it again.
He liked it and wants to join!!!! He has no idea how much he is going to like being a part of something bigger than him.