Back to me

A hundred million years ago I stood in my bathroom and realized that my life would be perfect if I had breasts. Well, it felt like a hundred million years ago… I lived in Los Angeles and was caught up in the wrong crowd. I just assumed it was normal to be sized up immediately upon meeting someone. Her mouth is too small and she needs bigger breasts…the creepy older man just immediately listing my flaws. No hi or nice to meet you…Her face is ok but she needs filler and color her hair. I felt small and irritated and really wanted to go home. I spent the next phase of my life hiding so I wouldn’t be noticed at all. I was only noticed then because my roommate was obsessed with being famous so I kept getting dragged to weird men and weirder situations. I was definitely not where I belonged. I hated HATED this time of my life. I lost so many years to this nonsense.

When I was a very young adult I was told that there were many things that I needed to change in order to be happy. My physical appearance being at the top of that list. I completely believed that if I perfected the outside then everything I ever desired would simply fall into place. All my self hatred would disappear and I would be confident and joyful and meet the love of my life…it would be easy. This is not a thing. Do not convince yourself that this is a thing! I was in for a long and painful dysphoric journey that felt surreal and miserable and incredibly confusing. To look in the mirror and see someone you don’t recognize was for me horrific. Am I enough? You were born more than enough. Your flaws and imperfections are the most beautiful and unique things about you…there isn’t one thing you need to change to be happy… except your vision of what perfect means and your relationship with the one who created you. There is a peace you cannot understand in that.

This world is so incredible and vast and filled with the most beautiful and fascinating people. Have you ever noticed that the ones who are the most captivating and beautiful are rarely the ones who are “perfect?” The ones who I just always wanted to be near were the ones who were magical in their confidence and sparkling from their souls. They were brave and deep and textured and had an easy contagious laugh. That is exquisite beauty. I always wanted the knowledge that I was loved and adored and I never realized (despite my faith) that that awareness and assurance comes from God. If I know that I am worthy and loved then I simply add to my life versus trying to fix my brokenness. You need to find find confidence and joy in who you are and be ok in what you’re not. You are already enough❤️

I haven’t figured out how not to be angry sometimes. Why in the world couldn’t I just have not moved in with that girl? Why would God want me around such a horrible influence? Why did I listen?! Why couldn’t I just be freaking happy?!!! So many years lost. But it wasn’t her fault. I was a magnet for broken souls. I only surrounded myself with screwed up people because I saw no value in myself. Man, I wish I could go back and tell that girl that everything going on around me was lies and I needed to go home. I needed God and some really good friends and I needed hope. I sometimes look back and cannot believe I lived through the torture that was my life. God sure had a plan but I was going to have to change everything, every single thing, to get back on track.

I thank you Jesus for loving me and protecting me when I was going wildly my own way. Thank you for blessing me with a precious daughter to raise in your ways. Thank you for filling me with the desire to give of my heart and soul to try to help anyone hurting or feeling as though they are not enough. Thank you for the glimpses of pure happiness that clearly come directly from God. I am blessed entirely because of my knowledge of you.

I got this! Till I don’t…but I will keep working on this for every single day of my life. I am committed to this path because when I let go and let God magical things happen. The pains that I cannot bare are suddenly lighter and somehow I can actually see the gifts in the storms versus the sheer panic that usually overtakes me. I want to be a blessing because it shines a light on life, illuminating the beauty that we tend to overlook. I also want to be me…Totally flawed, messy, ridiculous, joyful, sensitive me. Anyone who I attract to my life now I am grateful for. I am also happy. I have no idea what tomorrow will bring but the only times I freak out are the times I try to fix everything in my own way. I know God has his hands on my life and my child and as long as I remember that everything feels beautiful again.

You are exactly the perfect you. Your life is meaningful already. It won’t be different if you change everything. Nobody is staring at you judging you with the lens that you use. You are absolutely your worst and most unkind critic. And life goes on regardless. It goes on quickly and relentlessly so you might as well find the freedom in acceptance. I’m back to my original parts and I am grateful. I spend hours laughing or crying with friends I literally waited my entire life for. We complain and struggle and laugh and look in awe at the beautiful things. We catch loose horses and fall in mud puddles and watch my daughter run joyfully through fields, chasing goats or pigs or dragonflies and life feels sacred. You are enough mommy. Thank you precious girl❤️ you are everything ❤️

Me

I thought this year I had it all figured out. I saw the unbelievable growth and miracles and I thought I had turned the corner and was moving directly into my dream life. I figured God was like OK angels give her whatever she wants, she did it, she’s ready, we are proud of her! Nope…

I was sitting at a table surrounded by really cool and wildly different women, I was telling aspects of my life while they listened intently. I saw their faces and immediately wanted to disappear. I had shared too much. They could see me. I don’t want to be seen. I wanted to sink into the floor. My stomach started to hurt and I felt panic rising and realized I could never come here again. I had to leave and hide and forget these women existed and start over again somewhere new. I had to forget the animals and grab my daughter and run. It would be ok, it would just be us again. I could pretend to be perfect and she would be happy and no one would know I was broken…I’m broken.

It is so painful sometimes to be. Just to be. Not the easy happy moments when you’re being who you tell yourself you are but the moments you remember who you are…or at least you remember who you’ve always been told you were. You remember the voices telling you to be quiet, telling you you are not enough, not pretty or smart or special. You are not allowed to talk about your family or feelings. You have to be quiet. You have to protect everyone so people think they are perfect. Your purpose is to stay out of the way because you have no actual worth.

It feels like I have been hiding for a hundred years. I can’t hide anymore. I don’t want to protect anyone but my daughter and I don’t want her to learn to hide too. I thought I had it all sorted but as I sat with those women I realized that I have been living without people for my entire life. I have never had real friends or any sense of community because I was just always there. I always ran away the second I got uncomfortable. I would just pack up and move and start over again and again and again. The very second I let my guard down and saw those expressions I was gone…I can’t go this time. I can’t go anymore because my little girl isn’t so little and I can’t pretend with her life. She deserves to be real and to know she’s perfect even in her imperfections.

I once got so angry at my daughter for saying something true about our life. I wanted to scream WE DON’T TALK ABOUT THAT! I wanted her to know she embarrassed me and made me look like nothing…but I didn’t. I saw myself as a girl her exact age being told to be quiet. Being looked at like something was wrong with me for not being the same. I immediately told her that everything that has happened in my life was part of God’s plan and that she could talk about anything as long as it wasn’t mean. Our history is not something to be ashamed of but just a reality that helped to shape us into who God wants us to be. Not broken but whole. I meant it but somehow I guess I didn’t mean it for me.

My life is no longer my own. I belong to a little soul who is learning and growing and deciding who she is to herself and to this world. I cannot run anymore. I have to figure this out and I’m scared. I feel small and vulnerable and have absolutely no idea what the outcome will be. I thought I had it all figured out but here I sit in the dark scared again that no one will like me. Scared I really am not enough.

I promise you sweet daughter of mine to keep facing everything that scares me until I am as brave as you are. I will be exactly who I tell you you are. You are perfect. You are a gift to each person you meet. You are a beautiful sparkling soul that the world needs and you will be surrounded with love by people who know both the darkness and the light in you. People who will hold your hand when you are scared and who will cheer you on when you are brave. Your life is going to be so good.

I am broken but that is why I love so fiercely. I will figure this out because I know God didn’t bring me this far to just give up. I will stay this time and trust and be exactly who I am and it will be new because I’ve never done that before. This is going to be an exciting year for me and honestly I’m ready for it…and I’m scared but I suppose if you’re not scared sometimes you’re probably not actually living.

Surrender

Put on the armor of God

Life is a near constant test…at least for me. I have lived in the depths of hell and I have known profound happiness. These emotions were separated by two vastly different lives. The life in which I tried to do everything my way and the life in which I turned everything over to God before I did anything. The difference has been so astounding that I cannot comprehend how anyone ever chooses to do anything their own way. Why would you want to carry those burdens?

I wish sometimes when I am trying to explain my happiness that I could show I quick clip of my life before. It would probably instantly convert or deeply confuse anyone watching. My life was hell. I lived in a literal hell.

There were periods where it didn’t look as dark and evil as it was. There were periods where I danced at clubs with celebrities and flew on private jets. I got to pick my clothes out of magazines and lived in a huge house overlooking the sea. I remember going to Neiman Marcus and being told just buy whatever you want, we couldn’t even carry all the bags…and it was glorious for 7 seconds but it was black and fake and empty. I had to stay totally numb in order to not jump out of a window. I was screaming so loudly in my head that I was actually shocked no one could hear me. I wanted to die every second of every day.

There were periods of my life that I lived in a roach filled apartment next to a gay strip club. Where I hid with my cats watching the drugged out men bash out car windows on the street below. I pulled the blankets over my head so I couldn’t hear the roaches running up and down the wall above my head. It was so creepy and dangerous that I somehow convinced myself that I was equally dangerous so I felt comfortable walking down the dark streets of San Francisco at 4 am because I couldn’t sleep. Homeless men telling me to be safe because they knew a baseball hat wasn’t hiding my vulnerability at that hour…I didn’t care. I didn’t care if someone hurt me, it would have been an escape I believed I deserved.

My environment changed constantly but my inner state remained the same. If I was hiding in my car because I heard gunshots or at a fancy event, safe as can be, my head remained in hell. I wanted to be set free and I truly did not care how. I always believed in God. Always. But I didn’t believe I was worthy of living. I was told I was a loser at my lowest point by brother and because I always adored him I believed him. Every person I needed was telling me what I already believed, not because it was true but because…because.

You aren’t what anyone says you are. You are who God says you are. It doesn’t matter what you have or where you live or how tortured your inner state is. God is not a genie who is going to grant your wishes or fix your situation. God will though transform your mind. When you put your trust in God instead of in yourself the ways in which your life will change will have you on your knees with gratitude. You will begin to notice the unease you feel when you’re going in the wrong direction. You will be able to discern when someone’s reaction has nothing to do with you and you will be able to love them in spite of everything.

God’s gifts are limitless but the give of peace is profound. The ability to feel joy and gratitude and deep love no matter what is infinitely more valuable than any material item. I could not fix myself because it wasn’t my job. I had to surrender.

Today my life is a different life. A different planet. I start my day by saying thank you. I am so grateful to be here and to be able to feel everything. I moved back to my parents and I spend my days surrounded by animals and some of the kindest and strongest people I have ever met. I walk in the mud pushing a wheelbarrow filled with horse manure while my daughter sings to horses and I say THANK YOU out loud a hundred times. I watch these women and girls filled with confidence and strength and feel euphoric that my daughter has that as an example of what a teenager and mother and grandmother can be. I don’t need anything more. Every time something good happens it feels like Christmas because for me it is. Thank you God for loving me when I was unworthy and thank you for everything that today will bring❤

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your path straight. Proverbs 3: 5-6.

Faith.

I talk about God often because the works in my life have been very profound. The Bible talks about the renewal of your mind and because my life has been a black and white version of that I have no doubts…except when I do.

Your mind is always looking for ways to rationalize magical moments. Those serendipitous occurrences that take your breath away. But when you take them for what they are, and say thank you, you begin to see them everywhere. These moments can be teeny tiny or they can be huge and life changing but they are always happening and once you quiet your mind you will start to see them.

God has saved my life a million times. I am literally in awe that I am still here. I lived a very reckless and dangerous life before I settled into my place in this world. I remember as a teen driving over a hundred miles an hour with one foot on the dash. Weaving in and out of traffic passing on the right shoulder of the freeway. I would watch the speed go up and up and only slow down when the wheel started shaking.

I grew up with God and talked to him even while half conscious on the bathroom floor. I talked to God when I was 20 and running down the street at midnight in a horrible part of Sacramento with a man following me. I had to hide behind a car and I thought he would hear my heartbeat because it was pounding in my ears. I talked to God when I was searching for anything to quiet my mind and turning to substances that should have killed me. I prayed that God would take me when all of my recklessness just left me empty and broken. I was going my own way. It was a dark and terrifying and dangerous way but God was there. I should definitely not be alive, but God had a plan if only I would stop running long enough to hear it.

My life changed slowly over many years. I failed daily at everything and had to get back up and take baby steps to a future I couldn’t even see or comprehend. I remember giving up. I really recommend giving up. I prayed and visualized me begging Jesus to heal me, I was holding on to feet wearing leather sandals and I was done. I absolutely could not live even 1 more second this way. I don’t know what was real or a dream/vision but it felt so real to me. I never touched another substance after that day. I never had any desire to be numb again. I began to feel and that was so totally overwhelming because I had spent my entire life actively making certain not to feel a single thing.

I knew I had been healed. I knew that the habits and lifestyle I had turned to for coping couldn’t just disappear. I knew the relationships I was forming and repairing were impossible with my own will. I couldn’t question it because it was obvious. I had tried to get better my way a thousand times. I had bargained with God, made promises, asked for random signs. Finally I threw my hands up and just laid down and said God I give up! I’m not going to fight anymore. I’m done. I meant it with every ounce of my soul. I was ready for whatever happened.

I am so grateful because I know how different my story could be. I am so grateful to a God that already knew my purpose and wasn’t about to let me wreck it. I am also grateful that I found it in myself to humble myself before God and my loved ones. I have no idea what triggered my darkness but I know that with God there is no darkness. I know that I will have miracles to write while I drink my coffee at 5am. Sometimes they are ones like today. The miracle of a forever friendship and watching movies together during a rainstorm. The miracle of a lifelong dream of having horses come true in a way God knew would be much better than my vision. Or the big miracles like my being alive and here to share my testimony. My daughter who is my sidekick and best friend. And my family who I am so incredibly close with and friends!! I never thought I would have these beautiful, soul filling relationships.

I am so blessed. I am so happy. I also have also completely surrendered my vision and desires for those that God wants for me. I still mess up and fail because I’m human but my mistakes even make me happy because I see or feel instantly that I am going in the wrong direction and I fix it right then and there. I had times in my life where the idea of the joy and fulfillment I have now would have seemed impossible but nothing is impossible with God. Not even the impossible.

If even 1 person in the whole entire universe reads this and is looking for a sign then I promise this is your sign. I know with zero doubt that God heals and your mind can be entirely renewed. I know that happiness is so much better than you even can understand and that you don’t need anything to find your purpose outside of faith. Faith is the magic. With childlike faith you can do more than you can ever imagine. I promise.

Forgiveness and love

Life is so short when you really think about it. Who you are is temporary and one day you just won’t exist anymore. All the achievements you think matter, the people you’re angry with, those moments that filled your days. One day you will realize that the words you spoke were the last ones someone ever heard. You never know when it will be the last time.

We had a man we adored. We got his papers every morning and my daughter would leave a flower between the rubber band and the paper. We would always bring in his garbage cans and as he got older I would drive him to his Dr appointments and help him write his checks…his hands were swollen and shaky. I am pretty sure he could write his own checks though, I think he wanted the company. We would sit there until he ran out of stamps filling out checks and talking about his life. I loved doing that. I always made sure he knew we adored him. I always wanted him to feel loved. Every single time we saw him my daughter and I would stop whatever we were doing and run up like he was the best thing in the world. I would always ask if I could do anything for him and he would always say “I could use a new body and a new mind.”

I never ever thought he wouldn’t be here. I always thought we would have a tomorrow but one day a fire truck showed up. Then the police. I texted him over and over begging him to tell me he was ok. I sat outside and waited for the ambulance. When you die they don’t send an ambulance…I didn’t know that. They send a van and you become a body instead of a name. The driver doesn’t care who you were or what you did. His job is simply to take you away. That human who I adored was just taken away. Forever. Gosh I miss him. We still pick up his papers and his light is still on over his desk. I wish I could have held his hand before he died. I wish I could have said goodbye. I hope he knew we loved him.

I think about my life and all its chapters and challenges and I am grateful. I am grateful for being alive. I am grateful that I have been humbled and refined by God. I am grateful for every moment I get with the people I love and I make sure my words and actions show that. I want to treat everyone as if that is my last moment with them. I want them to feel adored. I probably get more out of that than anyone. Maybe it’s selfish. I have not one drop of resentment or anger towards anyone. I choose that. I choose to view everyone as the child they once were and that makes me feel loving towards them. I want to be happy! Now. Regardless of my circumstances or history. That is my gift to myself and to others, to be happy, loving and accepting and to forgive and let go. I wasn’t always that way.

I struggled with anger and pain during many periods of my life. They all stemmed from confusion. I didn’t realize sometimes people would say untrue things to cause conflict. I generally took words spoken at face value because it didn’t occur to me that a person would lie. I would become furious over a story I was told and lash out because it never even once crossed my mind that the individual was making it up for their own benefit. I watched an entire family stop speaking to one another based on the convoluted words of 1 person! That’s a lot of power for 1 person or a lot of weaknesses for those who fell victim…probably both. I tend to dive deeper so I kept trying to figure out the cause of the conflict and that’s when all the pieces fell together. I felt so sad for each individual person who had been targeted and then judged. I felt sad for judging. My realization didn’t leave me angry at the one who started it all, it left me feeling oddly soft. How broken must you be to destroy your own family! That is heartbreaking. Those once children conditioned to be on guard and to preform leaving deeply meaningful relationships virtually impossible. Children who were expected to impress others but not children who were ever cherished. Their worth measured by their accomplishments but never ever their heart or little souls. They actually never really mattered. They never learned to love so they carried bitterness from one generation to the next to the next. Thank God that my immediate family was protected from that bitterness. It is a cancer that spreads and destroys. I’m too rebellious to be bitter…or too empathetic…or both.

I literally stopped being angry the second I got it. I should have realized while I was listening that if someone is speaking horribly about their family members then they are also speaking horribly about you. I remember once asking this person directly to tell me the truth! I was almost yelling. I knew in that moment. I saw everything immediately in that very second and I had to decide whether I was going to be livid or forgiving and God stepped in and transformed not just my mind but also profoundly my heart. I just stopped being angry. Nothing was true. That was going to have to be ok with me. I had no emotional attachment anymore. I had no desire to hurt that person, I actually had the opposite feeling. I would show up and accept them for exactly who they were. They needed that and that could be my final gift to them…it didn’t matter if they deserved it. Until the others saw the same thing I would wait and hope that some day that damage would be erased and if not then I would accept that as well.

God says to love others. Hatred stirs up conflict but love covers up all wrongs. I am so blessed to have been given the gift of clear vision. I see now what is real and true and what is meant for harm. I am so happy to be surrounded by love and so many wildly different types of people. People I could have never dreamed of meeting or knowing. I choose happiness and love and complete forgiveness of both myself and everyone I am involved with. This life is fleeting but you can choose to be brave and strong at any moment. It is so much easier to be happy but it is also a practice like anything important. I am present and open and filled with gratitude.

I give people the grace I expect for myself. I show up. I am the person I wish everyone else would be. I am exactly who I always needed. It is unnatural and uncomfortable to face things head on, to put all your vulnerability on full display and just be ok with the outcome. I want that. I would always rather walk through fire than stay the same. I will meet you where you are today because yesterday doesn’t exist anymore. You only have right now. Tell the ones you love that you love them because before you know it they will be in that van. That person you hate used to be someone that mattered. Well you matter to me. My parents matter to me. My family matters to me and I will always let them know. Thank you God for seeing me before I could see myself.❤

See me.

It’s so fascinating how much power you have in this world. You have this profound and magical power to transform a person’s entire life view and in doing so also changing your own. You literally can alter the life path and spirit of those you come into contact with…why don’t some people see this?

When you are small your beliefs come as a result of those who care for you. Your ability to trust, to share, to love openly but mostly your feelings about your inherent worth. Critical and unpredictable affection leaves children confused and consumed with a constant feeling of being at least mildly unlovable…or in my case feeling profoundly unworthy and unattractive.

I have almost 0 memories of my childhood. I do remember the vague and constant sense of unease that I felt. I remember that no matter what I did it was probably wrong and I probably would be told at some point that I had “wrecked the day” I heard that a lot. I remember more than anything that no one ever seemed excited to see me. No one’s eyes ever lit up because of my presence no matter how hard I tried. I felt worthless at 6 and extremely ugly…everything I saw said if you were beautiful you made people happy and I made people so unhappy I assumed I must be disgusting and dirty and mostly ugly.

Ugliness is not necessarily a hideous face and body. Ugliness is a feeling. It’s the mirror of your parents expressions where the reflection was always angry or distracted or disinterested. It was excruciating for a little girl who just so deeply wanted to fix everything. A small soul who wanted to be enough even if I wasn’t perfect. Finally I thought maybe I could fix it all by disappearing. I started praying God would just take me away so everyone would be happy…just take me God! I don’t deserve to live.

In my dystopian world that turned into eating disorders, self harm, panic attacks and abuse of anything that turned off my own horribly critical mind. For the majority of my life I was trying to go away, go away from myself. Pain was my everyday and I had not even 1 moment of authentic happiness until I was an adult.

Happiness came when I was free from judgment. It came when I ignored everything I was ever taught about life and what made me worthy, and with that I slowly overcame all my issues entirely through the power of my own will and with near constant prayer. God was always with me even when I had completely abandoned myself.

I remember holding my daughter after she was born and realizing that every bit of love I had in my body…the love I never got, the love I always dreamed of, the love I never allowed myself, the unconditional forever magical pure love was in my arms. I was healed. I was healed in that moment.

Incredibly hard work and millions of mistakes followed but I was healing and I was healing all the generations to follow. THAT was my purpose. I mattered. I was important. I had a reason that was so so so much bigger than I could have ever understood and every single excruciating moment in my life had a purpose as well.

When my daughter wakes up I jump into her bed and kiss her face and twirl her in circles and I know my eyes light up because every morning I wake up excited to see her and kiss her and just be with her. Every “watch me mommy” and note she writes me is a treasure to me. Every time I light up for her I also am lighting up for the little girl I once was. I feel genuinely like the luckiest human ever to live that I get to shower this child with adoration and security and that I get to be loved by her. What a prize she is.

When you deeply heal you also become tender in those damaged places…you drop the defensiveness. My love for my family is the most authentic it has ever been. I feel a softness and love for my parents and their pain. The children they once were. I see pictures of these sweet innocent faces and wish I could have loved them unconditionally so they could have seen me and adored me. I wish I could heal their families and I wish you could heal generations backwards as well as forward but unfortunately I have no ability to fix what they can’t see and it’s also not my job. But I can accept them as is and I can see how beautiful they are and how well meaning and I can take the pressure off them because I no longer need them to adore me because I am already adored.

I don’t care about messes or perfection or what others think. I don’t care who is against me because I know God and my daughter are for me and literally nothing compares to that. I know I am filling this sweet soul with complete confidence and strong love of God and the total knowledge that she is adored as is. I know that while my parents don’t have the emotional ability to light up for me I now can light up for them. I can be excited when they wake up and I can love them for exactly who they are right now.

I never ever thought I could heal from the pain of my life but as it turns out that pain was a blessing because I have a gratitude and joy that transformed my life and I have more love to give than I ever knew possible..and finally after all this time I also can accept that love for myself and that simple act is the most magnificent and magical of all.

Thank you God for loving me when I was unlovable.

Joy comes after you become you.

My life and my spirit have always been an exact reflection of my self worth and inner state. You have to know with certainty who you are…the real you…to experience true and constant joy. I wonder sometimes if the pain I have experienced in my life was actually just God refining me towards a meaningful life filled with purpose.

Long story short, I simply gave up my expectations (based on my extremely limited vision) for whatever God’s will would be for my life.

It sounds so simple but it actually requires an intense refinement of your thoughts. I always felt certain something external would fix whatever was troubling me. A huge house, abundant wealth… but there isn’t enough money on earth to heal a broken soul or an unhappy relationship or a meaningless life. There are zero “things” that can quiet the struggle inside you. Also happiness truly isn’t expensive, it is simple and pure and fills you in a way nothing else can. It’s love and peace and it belongs to you and it can’t be taken or lost.

Living a life that I find honorable fills me. Giving of my time and any resources I have gives more to me than whomever I am helping and because I do everything with my daughter it is soul changing for her well. She learned to give a genuine compliment to random people and their reactions lit her up so beautifully…you just never know the power you have to change a person’s entire day.

My life is my testimony. The fact that I’m here and beyond grateful and that I wake up and say thank you while twirling under the stars. The fact that I have a daughter who is not only my favorite person but also my greatest teacher and joy. The relationships I have with my parents and the understanding of who they are is just nothing short of a miracle!

Probably one of God’s greatest gifts to me (outside of my daughter) was having to move in with my parents. My feelings and long held resentments and just blinding anger had me screaming at God “WHAT IN THE WORLD! WHY DID YOU PLACE ME BACK IN HELL!?” Well…Thank you God. I had a choice…I could be angry and awful (I was) or I could be quiet and listen and try to see where they were coming from. I could help and be an example and most of all I could let my daughter experience her grandparents with zero filter. Well, that sucked…but only until I put my ego and pride aside and saw the honestly astounding humans in front of me.

My parents are people. Sometimes, even as an adult, you forget. They are broken and flawed and kind and honorable and doing their best. My dad is grumpy and frustrating and haunted and sensitive and shy and loyal and the most protective and generous man I have ever known. He gives until he has nothing. He will show up to help you no matter the hour no matter the issue. He will be the 1st person to save you and will worry about everyone and everything non stop. He will also offend you because he has no filter and he will be devastated if you get mad because he will have no clue what is wrong. He is complicated and the best grandfather in the universe.

My mom will spend 45 minutes explaining how to use the new shampoo she bought and hold the shampoo hostage so you are forced to listen to “you pour a small amount in your hand and then put it on wet hair…WET! ARE YOU LISTENING?” But she will also search high and low for your favorite things and encourage you to buy things that make you feel better. She will always laugh and desires nothing more than seeing her family happy and joyful and safe. She doesn’t hate a single soul and is very much still the little girl she once was. She just loves people and sunflowers and mostly she loves my dad and just worships her grandchildren. She is simple and kindhearted and believes God answers prayer and she prays for each family member 100 thousand times a day.

I am blessed and grateful and know how to use shampoo. I have learned patience and tolerance and that life is way too short to not find the good. There is so much good. It is so easy to pass judgment and be critical but if you don’t want to be judged…well you know the rest.

I choose to live my life privately because I want a happy and wholesome existence. I don’t allow devices or distractions in our lives and I am very purposeful in my parenting. I put God first and believe that offers a shelter for my daughter in difficult times and also a base of morality which the world currently seems to lack. I am happy with what I have and have gone from praying for everything to praying for enough because that is all I need. Thank you God for everything good and bad because it led me to today and today I am filled with joy.

My world❤

My world used to be so small. So so small. I really had to throw all my insecurities out the window to create the life and love I have today. I look back at who I felt I was and am so grateful God had his hand on me because wow my life was a mess!

I spent many years completely alone and depressed and isolated and then decided to get into an awful relationship with someone I literally couldn’t stand and who had a hard core mental illness. But I also feel grateful for that because I had to hit much lower than rock bottom to wake up and claim my life back. You can always reclaim your life and live in your purpose!

One day my daughter and I just jumped on a plane to meet her brothers and sister who she had never met. We with virtually zero notice packed our bags and headed off to meet these people we didn’t know and nothing ever felt more right. I felt zero anxiety or fear. In fact I felt nothing but joy. It turned out to be a life changing moment in both of our lives.

Our lives are so full. My sweet daughter has this group of kids who she immediately loved and it was like they had always been together ❤ That bloodline also became her tiny forever. What a spectacular present. They spent every single second together and there was not one fight. My heart was overflowing with happiness at seeing her with 4 brothers and her dream sister who she idolizes.

The day I claimed my life my life claimed me. Me changing my view on myself also changed my daughter’s life forever. She has a huge family now and although I am her entire world she loves nothing more than telling her friends about her modern family and she feels such pride in being different. I am so proud of myself…it’s so funny to me how I wake up everyday and just feel so proud of myself.

You forgot to love yourself.

I remember looking at my ex and knowing that if I had a shred of self esteem I never would have acknowledged him…but I didn’t and I threw away many years believing perhaps I had a problem loving (I don’t) or that maybe I was just scared or damaged by my family (his near constant whisper in my ear) and I couldn’t handle complete devotion.

I listened to his passive aggressive crap about my family for years while also watching him sleep soundly as I got up and did all the work…I listened to the complaints about me while he sat in his underwear “looking” for a job for years but also took note of the fact that he would not work forever unless it was a CEO position. He would let everyone suffer rather than lower himself to actually help…

I am a strong willed person and that is what saved me. I was not the one to believe the nonsense about my family because I have both a brain and extreme devotion to those I love. It is one of hundreds of signs when your spouse tries to convince you your family is flawed. When they try to isolate you from your friends and family and then when they become deeply unhappy or agitated when you go against these wishes…and God forbid you go speak of their family they way they so freely speak of yours.

Soon you find you have lost most contact with the ones who adore you. You have no friends where you used to have many. Your joys are not shared and so you give them up. The ones who make you laugh and happy also bring guilt because you feel like you are in some way betraying the one at home, and then when you get home you are put down but told “I was joking” and your life is one huge mess.

Extremely damaged people can make hell feel like home.

I found that I had to be numb in one way or another to just be ok and when I worked hard and got very healthy his unhappiness and tears became near constant. When I got angry about his not having a job the passive aggressive crap began then the kissing up in a ridiculous way and then tears and when you don’t give in then you will get the threats. Suicide was a big one. He went to that one frequently and obviously it was my fault…all of his failures were in fact partially or entirely my fault.

I am brave. I am worthy of a beautiful life. I am an amazing soul who has gifts and humor and finds happiness in loving others…so I left. I got every single threat known to man but I was done and it became predictable and transparent. You can’t make a person kill themselves! That is obvious but not obvious when you’re in deep. You are not responsible for another adults mental health, they are. If someone truly loves you they will do what needs to be done. They contribute. They love your family because you marry the family as well. They don’t ever make fun of you and your personality or hobbies or being. They don’t try to damage your relationships (this one will haunt you later.) They don’t watch you go crazy while doing nothing and then suddenly beg and plead when you lose it. This is very literally the opposite of love and one day you wake up and if you’re lucky your gone and it’s then that you see that this person was completely incapable of actual love. They needed you because just think about where they would be if you left?

I am deeply in love with my life now and it looks nothing like I thought it would. I wake up happy and go to bed happy and work my butt off happy and have a relationship with my parents I didn’t know possible. Everything I thought was wrong. My father sat me down and told me that I was a joy!! My mother said how grateful she was to have me to talk to! My neighbors all gave my daughter and I gifts because we have really close friendships and I have more love in my life than I ever had even as a child.

Every second you decide what your life will be.

Me then you.

I’m not sure if I’m a normal human. Sometimes the feeling of having lived before is so profound…the ability to empathize with the unseen in far away lands or the familiarity of a landscape I’ve never seen. Or maybe it’s just that my soul so desires to see, touch and taste everything this world has to offer…I feel claustrophobic just staying within the walls of my own perceived “space.”

I look back on my struggles and feel such frustration at my simple and egocentric life…what a waste. My need to be numb to avoid the screaming in my head “YOU’RE NOT WHERE YOU BELONG!” I had no one to guide me or explain to me that perhaps my mind was bigger than my world. That I was feeling caged and the same and I wanted to be free and different.

I wanted to learn about every single culture and to use my hands to create. I wanted to understand the looks in people’s eyes and I didn’t want to miss anything. I wanted to help and to build and to be a part of the world not just the tiny little world allotted to you when you follow life’s rules. I don’t love rules.

When I had my daughter it was just us (still is) and I was so excited at the ability to fill her spirit with everything so she could take on this world. I wanted to foster in her a deep love for life. A knowledge that the world is vast and textured and hers. That she is not limited to only the ground in front of her and that learning is a gift, a prize…and it extends far beyond textbooks.

I desire to raise a child who is not the same! The world doesn’t need millions of kids staring at their phones. We definitely do not need another kid scrolling through Instagram and Snapchatting their way through to adulthood repeating the nonsense that they are told matters. I owe it to HER children to grow her fully. I owe it to the world to raise a woman who engages entirely and brilliantly with everything around her.

So now we homeschool. We do spelling tests in magical forests and math outside of a museum. We wish on stars at 4am then learn about astronomy by pointing out constellations and watching videos of the space lab. We make friends with people from other cultures and religions and we learn about them and who they are. We live and adventure and play because that is what really matters.

I am raising a child who is brave, well mannered, well rounded and interesting. A child who is deeply empathetic and who looks into your eyes and holds your hand. Someone who wants to take care of others and who also loves to be taken care of. She will always help the child who falls down but also will just walk away if someone is unkind…at 6 she knows her worth. That is my prize❤

Every day is God’s gift to me and what I do is my gift to God…or maybe who I raise is my gift.

Continue reading “Me then you.”