Category: THOTM


I sh*t rainbows, ya’ll

Over the past 3 years, I have really been working hard on self-improvement.  It stems from many things, but mostly, seeing people around me and their resultant children and wanting better for myself and my children.  It was not a “We’re better than you!” type of thing, but a, “I don’t want my children feeling that way, thinking that way, or doing things that way.”  I know that neither myself nor my children will be perfect, but the sense of entitlement, playing the victim, and the unwillingness to do anything for themselves was overwhelming.  I didn’t want my kids doing any of those things, and it seemed the best way to avoid that was to just not model the behavior myself.

 

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Project Spread the Love

     Most of you know I have these weird self-improvement projects that are always on-going.  Currently, my biggest project is not saying something if I cannot say it out of or with love.  It has been difficult, but I am much less angry, and I am much less worried about hurting the feelings of others.  Of course something said in love can still be hurtful, but the absence of malice can make a huge difference.

     So!  What am I working on now?  While I think continuing to improve yourself is important, I also feel it’s important to give back.  Have you ever thought, “How can I repay them for that?” about someone?  Sometimes it’s easier than you think.

Introducing….  Project Spread the Love!  Every day I try to say or do something nice or positive to three people.  It can’t be something like, “Your skirt is gorgeous!” or a simple expression of thanks.  The only rule I have is that it has to be something no one else can say.  Anyone can tell you you’re having a great hair day.  Anyone can say thank you for watching their dog.  Every person in your life is there for a reason.  Every person in your life can bring something positive.  How nice would it be to tell them exactly what they have done for you that no one else ever could?  Project Spread the Love is about just that – spreading the love.  Today I sent 3 e-mails.  It didn’t take me long.  It didn’t take a whole lot of time and contemplation because I said what was in my heart.  It didn’t cost me anything.  Maybe it’s not enough, but just think what a difference it may make.  It certainly can’t hurt. 

Spread the love.

It’s been a while.  I had / have all these great things I want to write about, but never seem to find the time.  As of this moment, I have 12 minutes before I have to leave to pick Mega Man up.  Let’s see how much I can unload before then…

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We're expecting our third child.  For some reason, that tends to make people's jaws drop.  Yes, I will only be 25 by the time this baby arrives.  Yes, I will have 3 children under the age of 5.  Yes, I am tired and would like to have a few months without diapers.  There are a million other questions I get asked where I will honestly answer in the affirmative and most people receive it as a negative.  But you know something?  My family rocks

I know you can't keep the lights on with love, but when you love someone enough, you work hard to keep those lights on.  In a way, yes, you can keep the lights on and the fridge full, and the car running, and the house standing with love.  My children may want for some things, but they will NEED nothing.  Our oldest has his Pre-K open house tomorrow, and somehow, depsite having to cut back the month before we decided he really did need to go just to pay the bills on time, I found the money to pay his tuition.  Our current youngest, soon to be the middle child, has a sensitive little butt and can only handle Pampers friggin' wipes, and yet somehow, I manage to keep that in the budget for him.  Somehow, despite recovering from damage caused by an undiagnosed auto-immune disease that wreaked havoc on my liver, kidneys, and heart, I am still able to carry a healthy baby and my body continues to rebuild itself at the same time. Somehow, despite most days being an evil bitch, my husband still loves and whole-heartedly supports me.  Somehow, despite him being gone a lot in the past, and aggravating the crap out of me in the present, I still love and whole-heartedly support him.  What other strengths do you really need?  

We work hard to pay our mortgage and utility bills on time, and in full.  Our taxes are current.  Our vehicles are in good condition, well maintained, and their taxes and other fees are also up-to-date.  Our animals are all healthy and with good vet records.  My children have a backyard to retreat to.  They have a playroom for rainy days that's fully stocked with an easel to paint, stamp, draw, and color on, as well a computer, learning toys, and toys they can just be silly with.  They've got books enough to fill more shelves than I do, and yes, they all get read in turn.  My babies have clothes to fit them and keep them cool in the Summer and warm in the winter.  They've got food to nourish them, and keep their bellies satisfied.  They've got parents who adore them, and are protective as all get-out, and friends and extended family who would do anything for them. 

So maybe you can't see why we thought having a third would be a wonderful addition to our family, but you know what?  I don't care.  It used to bother me when people gave me "those looks," but now I feel sorry for them.  If all you can see is a young family whom you assume is taking advantgae of Welfare or whatever else, I truly feel sorry for you.  It's a shame you've never known young people willing to work hard for the things they want and need.  It's a shame you've never known young people who could be good providers, hard workers, and compassionate beyond their years.  How limited your experiences must be to assume that because of my age, I cannot be a mother as tender, caring, educated, and knowledgeable as yourself. 

*sigh*

Yes, I am ecstatic that I am carrying our third child.  I am still in awe that this body that's been so beaten up lately is now turning itself around and not only repairing and caring for itself, but is nurturing and creating this entirely new human being!  I am amazed at the love and support my husband offers on a daily basis.  I am overwhelmed by my love for and from my children, and truly thankful for every day I get to spend watching them grow into young people.  This third baby is going to be a tremendous blessing to this family, and I am so glad this baby is on it's little way…  No matter how anyone else may care to see it. 

Quiet in the Chaos

         I feel like my life is moving at the speed of light.  I am super busy with clients, my kids are growing up right before my eyes, my husband is evolving into a more thoughtful creature (not that he was thoughtless before, but he's somehow improving on damn-near perfection!), and I am struggling to plant myself.  In my attempt not to miss a turn as I hurl down my life's highway, I am going to be quiet.  I am just going to listen.  Where am I going?  Am I going to wait 4 years and start my CNM program through [big hospital I don't necessarily like]?  How am I going to make it to Nae's wedding without killing myself?  How can I find more ways to help Mega Man process the world around him?  How can I make more time for just my babies and my husband?  How can I quiet the chaos while embracing all that it brings.  I've never had so many prospective doula clients!  I've never had so many challenges when it comes to raising the boys.  I have never had more things to talk about with DH.  I'm overwhelmed, and hoping I am not missing any crucial lessons along the way.  *sigh*

Quiet amidst the chaos.  That's my goal for the next few days…

If you don’t know me by now…

I guess sometimes you just have to step back, realize, and finally accept that you can't be everyone's best friend.  No matter how much you love and care for someone, it doesn't mean they have to feel the same way about you.  When we don't mean to hurt people, or don't even know what exactly we did to hurt that person, it doesn't change the hurt for that person.  Sometimes what we need is something unacceptable to that person, and there is no compromise.  You can't give up on something you need, nor can you ask them to suddenly accept something they find appalling.

You can't judge someone for doing what they feel they need to do…  Even if it hurts you.  The majority of people don't cope with things in ways they feel will hurt others.  They just do what they feel is needed.  We may not always agree, and sometimes we may get hurt, but that's what they need.  So maybe not being in that person's life is best for us, as well as them. 

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Yesterday, I Cried

    I rarely write about books mid-read.  I like time to process the work in its entirety.  With this, however, I just have too much to say.  I think it's a book everyone should read, because everyone can take something positive away from it.

     There was a chapter that made me literally hurl the book across the room, run for the bathroom, and pray to the procelain god for about half an hour.  There are chapters that make me cry inside, and chapters that, before I even realize it, I had resumed my years-old habit of biting my nails. 

     I love the way the book is written.  It's conversational, but still poetic in places.  It's not one of those, "I didn't understand half the words in there," type of books.  It just…  clicks…  It hits in a place deep within that you haven't tended to in a very long while, if ever. 

     I've read a little over half.  Unlike most books, I am taking my sweet time to make sure I don't miss anything.  It feels as though this book were written for me.  At first, it seemed to be screaming, "See!  There will always be somone worse off than you, so quit your bitching and get on with it!" 

Then, it mellowed out and I got the feeling that the author genuinely feels that any life can be traumatic, because it's how we process the events that makes or breaks us, and that can't be measured.  What could break my spirit may just make you uncomfortable.  That doesn't make it any less hurtful for me. 

Then it came to patterns: when you've not had great examples set for you, and you can't figure out what's wrong with the picture, you're bound to keep repeating those patterns and winding up in the same holes.  I did a lot of that growing up, but unlike Iyanla, I did have a few people who helped me climb out of the holes, see what didn't belong, fix what was broken, and avoid the next pitfall.  There were other times that I needed that and there wasn't anyone there…  But, in all fairness, when people were there, I didn't always listen when they spoke, or follow their directions, but they were there, dammit!     

     And now we're at responsibility.  How do you go about fixing the wrongs, mending the breaks, and healing your total self?  That's why I slowed down when I came to this point…  I know I need to listen, and listen well.

     So…

     Yesterday, I cried.  Yesterday I cried because of all the hearts of all the matters.  I cried because while I love my children with all my heart, I am still not the mother they deserve.  I cried because I love my husband more than he will ever know, yet day after day, I can't show him.  I cried because I want to speed my physical healing process, so that it no longer hinders my emotional healing process.  I cried because I miss so many people.  I cried because so many people weren't who I needed or wanted them to be.  I cried because I'm not the person others need or want me to be.  I cried because I haven't been able to cry when I needed to.  I cried because, no matter what anyone else says or thinks or feels, I know I have come a long way from the scared 16 year old on the plane, the wreckless 16, 17, and 18 year old in high school, and the irresponsible 18, 19, and 20 year old, and despite all that learning and healing and attempts to make amends, I cried more because I know I still have a long way to go…

          I used to be a person who don’t let things go easily.  It took me a while, I won’t lie.  Even then, when I finally let something go, it was usually for good.  I got to a point in my life a few years ago where it just dawned on me.  Why carry around things that bother you when nothing will change?  You’re bearing a needless burden and no one is suffering but you.  After that little epiphany, it got a little easier to let things go, or to at least get past them without looking back at them every day, wondering if I did every thing I could or if I was right to walk away in the first place. 


          There are maybe…  2 or 3 things in my life that I haven’t let go of yet.  Believe me, that’s progress.  Of the things I’ve previously set free, there are 2 huge ones that I thought I would never release.  When I sat down and really looked at it, I still came to my original conclusion – Why bother?  I’m struggling to get through each day because of that?!  Let it go.  Take a deep breath, and let it go.


          When things bother me now, I’m pretty much over it in a day or two.  I have too many other things I could be doing with my time and energy to let someone or something upset and consume me for too long.  I have children who need a present mother, a husband who needs and deserves an attentive wife, and friends and family who have already put up with enough sh*t from me to walk on eggshells forever.  I let things go.  I feel no sense of entitlement or that I deserve certain things.  I still look at some people and wonder what they did to deserve their lives, but even then, I don’t stay angry about it the way I used to.  We all get what’s coming to us. 


          For better or worse, we all get what we deserve.  When I get sh*t handed to me, I still get upset, sure, but I also think, “I pissed someone off, didn’t I?”  At this point in my life, I think my karmic check book is about balanced.  I’ve had a lot of sh*t handed to me in 24 years.  Some sh*t was more serious than others, but it all shaped me.  It all molded me in some way – better or worse.  I carried some sh*t further than other sh*t.  I didn’t deal with some sh*t as well as others.  Sometimes I even blamed the sh*t that was handed to me for other sh*t that was going on.  *shrug*  One way or another, it got dealt with.  Sometimes I created more karmic debt because of the way I handled my sh*t, but other times, I felt like I worked off some debt, too.


            When I think about karma, I really do think about it like a checkbook.  I used to feel like I was constantly running in the red no matter what I did.  In retrospect, a lot of that was my attitude, but I think I was born with a huge debt, too.  I must not have been a very nice person in my past life, because I chose/was placed upon a very hard path to tread.  I am at a point now where I feel like my column has been made more than even, and I’m writing my balance in black.  I’m not saying I don’t screw up or my life is all blessed and no bothers, but for the most part, I feel like I’m in a much better place.  I know who stands where – my side, no man’s land, or the Other Side.  I know who I can call 24/7, and who I can only call when I’m happy.  I know who loves my family and who just tolerates us. 


          I know where I stand because I created this place; I brought myself here.  It’s a pretty peaceful feeling to think you’re no longer running in the red.  I used to feel like I was just waiting for the next Karmic b*tch slap, but now I just sort of sit back, thinking if the sh*t hits the fan, it’s just another chance to increase my good karma. 


          Perspective…  I kept hearing it was all about perspective, but I think I finally get it.  You don’t have to be a ray of sunshine all the damn time, but not thinking the entire world is against you certainly doesn’t hurt.  Perspective, ya’ll… 

          *I’m not saying that I shouldn’t be held accountable for past actions.  I’m just saying that this explains some of my “over the top”-ness.


People with Celiac Disease, wheat sensitivity, and prolonged mal-absorption of vitamins and minerals often experience adrenal fatigue.  Your adrenal glands work over time to try to make up for the things your body is lacking, and without good nutrition to support them, they quickly tire and become less efficient.  One of the consequences of adrenal fatigue is GABA inhibition.  GABA controls your calming factors.  In other words, when one part of your brain becomes excited, GABA steps in to help get you back to a happy medium.  When things like problems at work or home, financial strain, and even every day stressors step in, GABA should be there to help you calm down.  With adrenal fatigue and Celiac Disease, this doesn’t happen.  GABA is poorly absorbed, so your stress hormones remain in high gear.  Your reactions seem extreme because they are.  Here’s a typical scenario…


You’re driving home from work after your boss just told you there is work to be done and you’re coming in over the weekend to help do it.  You’re now very irritated, as you had plans with your family this weekend.  You’re now thinking, ‘Great, I get to be the one to let them down AGAIN.’  On your way home, someone cuts you off in traffic and where you may have just sighed or given them the finger, you honk, scream, and give them the finger, stewing about it all the way home, and vowing vengeance if you get the chance to cut them off, too.  When you get home, there’s a bike in the driveway.  Instead of getting out to move it, reminding yourself to talk to your son about putting his things away, you get out of the car, fling the bike into the yard, and get back into the car, slamming the door behind you.  After parking the car, you scream for your son, demanding to know why he left his $200.00 bike in the driveway where it could easily be destroyed or stolen.  You ground him for a week, forbidding him to ride the bike before week’s end.  As you start to make dinner, the spaghetti sauce bubbles onto the stove you just wiped down, and you curse and get flustered.  When someone asks where the parmesan cheese is, you start crying, asking why it just isn’t enough.  You go to bed exhausted, but can’t sleep, and after tossing and turning, finally fall into an unrestful sleep.  When you wake up the next morning, you’re already/still upset.


Where most people would at least be able to catch their breath, or even seperate the instances because different people were involved and had nothing to do with the fact that you were already agitated, where there is GABA inhibition, this doesn’t happen.  The boy who left the bike in the driveway may just as well have been responsible for you working through the weekend.  Your body doesn’t reset or calm itself, even during your sleep cycles.  The inhibition of GABA keeps your stress levels high.  Elevated stress causes your body to produce the stress hormone, cortisol.  The over-production of cortisol furthers or causes adrenal fatigue.  It’s a vicious cycle. 


This is part of the reason many people with Celiac Disease or wheat sensitivities are thought to be bipolar, manic depressive, or sufferers of other mental disorders.  Their bodies are in chemical turmoil because their production of stress hormones rises exponentially while their abilities to calm themselves falls exponentially.  Upsets beget more, longer-lasting upsets.  Activities such as yoga and meditation help increase the production of GABA, but the absorption is still poor, so the results are not nearly as productive as with chemically balanced people.


The more I read, research, and understand, the more I think, “Wow…  I wonder what would have happened if I had found out a month ago?  A year ago?  2 years ago?  What would I have done differently, or how would I have been better able to cope with stress had I been eating foods that weren’t toxic to me, creating holes in my stomach and intestinal lining?  How would my relationships have changed had I been able to actually calm down after someone or something hurt me or angered me?”


*shrug*  For most things, I think, “It was what it was.  I reacted the way I did because that’s what felt right.”  In a few cases, I know I was wrong, but it was like being a passenger while someone else drives – I didn’t necessarily want to go there, but I had no control over our destination.  For those things, I can apologize.  For those things, I think the people who know me and are learning with me as I go, I think they already know I hated being that way.  I hated wondering when I would blow up again, or be able to sleep normally, or just not wake up feeling like I had already gotten my ass kicked.  I’m not saying they are or should be giving me carte blanche, but I think those that really love and care for, and have watched me suffer…  They get it.  They know it was hell for me.  I haven’t been the nicest person or the easiest person to love and get along with for a long time.  While it hurt me, I can’t imagine how it’s hurt the other people I love…  Along with my physical healing, I am also trying to heal some of the past damage I’ve done to others.  They don’t have to forgive me.  I was wrong.  In control or not, I was wrong.  If I person who doesn’t know they’re diabetic gets in the car, passes out and hits someone else, they’re not completely free of blame, right?  Sure, I didn’t know why I acted the way I did, but I still did it.  I want to apologize, not to make every thing all perfect and full of sunshine, but just to show them that I know I was wrong.  That’s important for me.  If it helps them make sense of things, or they never think about it again, at least I know I did what I thought was right…


In the end, that’s all anyone can ask of us, right?      

          I am sad to say some bricks have been added to my walls.  I decided that when I woke up this morning, the mess of the previous few days would be just that – the mess behind me.  While I may not be the same person I was before all of this, I hope that at least the hurt left some lessons with me that are now built into my walls. 

          One good thing did come out of all of this for sure.  For one thing, I know LRRH is un-friggin-believable.  We had a little tiff last week and when I couldn't get a hold of my other life line, I called her.  She dropped every thing.  I just asked for her to talk to me because I had some seriously ill sh!t running through my head that I couldn't shake.  I just wanted to hear someone's voice that I could trust.  She went above and beyond, shaming me into making me realize what a kick @ss friend she truly is.  She didn't just talk to me, but made me blurt out what was upsetting me so much that I could barely get out a coherent sentence.  Where she and Nae may have been outside the walls before, they just crossed over the moat and through the gate that's been added with the new layers.  I keep them safe with me everywhere I go.

     Sadly, I think even DH was in limbo as far as where he stood – within or with out my walls.  He has also been placed in the fold.  I'm not "finally welcoming" those who have always been there for me because they took my side, holding my hand the whole time, vowing retaliation and saying I was completely right.  They were brought into the fold because they should have been there all along.  All along, they have been real with me.  They tell me when I f*ck up, what I need to do to fix it (if I can fix it), and they also tell me when I'm being an @sshat.  They tell me when I've crossed the line, but they also back me up when others cross the line.  They've had my back for years and while I've always had theirs too, I am sad to say that it wasn't with the total abandon they devoted to me.  There was still a tiny piece of my heart, reserved, left completely untrod upon.  I thought if I could just keep one piece completely to myself, I would be impossible to destroy – that no one would ever hurt me so badly that I couldn't recover.  How selfish and silly of me…  I think I even held my children at this length, for fear that I would lose them, or they would grow into adults who loathed me. 

       I know ya'll (Nae, DH, and LRRH) read this…  I hope that as you do, you can forgive me for the distance.  I know I've done some wicked damage to each of you in the past, and though I know it may be too little too late, I hope with every tiny piece of my heart that it isn't.  I love you more than you will ever know – with every tiny piece of my heart.  THOTM is that there may be more bricks in the walls, but there will never be bricks between us again.