Monday, June 24, 2013

A new journey

How does one discover who they are? What makes up a person? How do you decide what kind of person you want to be? I am a mother, a sister, a cousin, a friend, a (soon to be) ex-wife, an athlete, a co-worker. But being a mother doesn't define me anymore than being a co-worker. What makes me uniquely myself? I don’t know these answers and in the last 10 years I have gotten miles further away than when I was 20. So how do I discover the answers? I keep saying that I have lost my identity, that I don’t know who I am anymore. Some of that has been my situation but it’s happened because I let it happen. What makes me happy? There are a million little things that bring me pleasure, the joy of seeing my children blissfully happy playing and laughing tops the list, but that’s not the kind of happy I’m talking about. What makes me happy with myself? What makes me the person I am or want to be? How do I become a person whom I respect? How do I become a person I like? Who am I? I don’t know. I don’t know where to start. 

This process of self-discovery is scary and exciting. I relish the opportunity to find out who I am and who I can be and what I can achieve. But I am also fearful because I don’t know where the starting line is. I do not have directions. I like direction. I can deal with bumps in the road and obstacles thrown in my path, but first I need to be on the path. I want to have a plan. Plans change and that’s ok but I want a plan to start with. So without a plan, with no direction, I feel lost and afraid.

Hindsight has let me see that I lose myself in relationships. I am so desperate for acceptance that I mold myself into what I think other people want so I can gain their acceptance. Except then I’m not myself and on an unconscious level I know it and the other person knows it and it infects the relationship. But to stop that cycle I have to first learn who I am. I need that so I can stay true to myself. That has to be my focus. It's time to become unapologetically (<--that's a word no matter what spell check says) myself. 

Who Am I? This is my journey, starting now…


Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Bud's work

Bud brings home a lot of fun stuff from school. They do a lot of neat projects and his teacher pushes them to do challenging work. Writing isn't his favorite thing to practice but he does pretty well and sometimes he comes up with some really great sentences. Like the Father’s Day story he wrote:

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My ipod pictures aren’t the best so if you can’t read it, it says:
“The best thing about my dad is when he goes bowling he gives me change so I can play games. He likes to go bowling. His favorite foods are chili, apple pie, and stir fry. Dad knows a lot about…

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…nature and animals. I love when we go bowling together because it is fun and I go after he does.”

Doesn’t that make you want to say “Awwww!” I know that was my reaction. But what until you get a load of this one…

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Translation: “My sister’s appearance is colorful.”

SUPER AWWWWW!!!! She is colorful! So cute that he recognizes it! 
(I don't think she has man hands though. He probably put emphasis on her hands since she's always touching his stuff. I think this picture is proof that he sees her as two big hands.)

He also recognizes his own talents…

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Translation: “My talent is climbing and running.”

Yes, yes it is and he’s so good at both!

But sometimes there are ones that you know what he’s saying but it’s so much better if you read it the wrong way…

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Translation: “I made a mistake by spilling Jose on the floor.” 

Poor Jose. I don’t know why Bud spilled you on the floor but I’m sure he’s sorry. Oh wait, Juice. He spilled JUICE. Right. I still like Jose better.

But then there are the ones that you KNOW you are reading wrong but you just can’t quite figure out what he was trying to say. (I even asked him about this one and he sat there staring at it for about a minute saying “It’s ummm, it’s ummm, it’s aaaaaa, yeah I don’t know what I was trying to say.”)

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Translation as best as I can figure: “My momdesing some of my shit.”

I, uh, I...I...I just don’t know what he was going for here. I’m a little put off by the profanity. Especially after he told me yesterday that I need to watch my language after I said “Crap!” Sounds like a double standard to me!

But what really gets me is this one. I don’t believe any translation is needed…
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But look how well he formed those letters. Not really any confusion on what he was going for. I'm so proud.

In other news, I may get him tested for Tourette’s. 


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

7 things

So, needless to say, things aren't great right now. It's easy to fall into woe-is-me pity parties. But I don't like that kind of party so I do my best to keep myself out of them. (This does not always work. A particular friend can vouch for that pretty well...thank you for allowing me to barge into your night when I couldn't stand it anymore. Watching zombies eat people was oddly cathartic.) SO...all this is to say that I sometimes need to remind myself to count my blessings. Even dark clouds have silver linings, right? So here's my list of 7 things I am thankful for right now.

1.  My kids - I seriously doubt my ability to parent at most times but they are the best kids any mom could ask for. Both of them are kind, funny, and smart. I'd like to take a little credit for the way they are turning out. Or at least, I'm not doing anything so bad to ruin any natural tendency to be awesome. I'll take what I can get. 

2.  My family and friends - they have been nothing but supportive through this whole thing and I don't know how I'd be surviving without them. Each of them plays a different but necessary role in keeping me sane. 

3.  My job - I was given a promotion that is effective next month! We are taking on a lot more responsibility and I'll be an integral part of the new initiatives. I am so excited for this opportunity and I'll be learning so many new things. After almost 7 years in the office it's really great to get this type of unsolicited recognition. Especially when I don't feel capable of running the rest of my life, it's good to know they have faith in me.

4.  Volleyball - Lately, volleyball has been my only consistent form of physical activity. It has become my best stress reliever. There's just something about being on the court, working as a team, and dominating the other team working up a good sweat that is just so fulfilling. 

5.  Mexican food - yeah, I realize this is a weird thing to be thankful for but I love it and it's usually gluten free and always delicious. It's pretty much 98% of my diet these days. (The other 2% is candy. I'm a super healthy eater!)

6.  Longer days - while most times I just want the night to get here so I can go to bed again, I am still thankful for longer days (when it isn't raining) so we can be outside riding bikes and laughing. Laughing is good.

7.  Laughing - yeah, this deserves it's own number. I love to laugh and I am so thankful that there are many reasons to still do so. 

I'll leave you with a few picture from our outing this weekend to our local nature conservatory... 

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Those faces!

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Bud took this picture!

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And Babe took this one!


Wednesday, June 5, 2013

I've got nothin'

Like any mom, when my kids are sad about something it breaks my heart. I want to fix it and make it all better so they don’t have to be sad anymore. But I don’t really know how to fix this latest thing. You see, Bud is surrounded by girls. He has his sister and me and his grandma and all his girl cousins and all his aunts. He loves them all…but they are girls. Sure he has his dad and grandpa…but it’s 3 against 7 most days (or more if my mom is up or if his other Aunt is up visiting) and it makes Bud sad. He wants more boys around. I have boys on my side of the family but they are 4 hours or more away and Face Time is only so good. One night he tried to convince me I should have another baby…BUT ONLY IF IT’S A BOY!! Sorry kid, I love you, but to paraphrase Meatloaf…I won’t do that!

How do I make him feel better about being the only male grandchild? How do I make him understand that girls have value too? No seriously, how do I do this? Because I’ve got nothing. Every time he brings it up…which is a lot…I don’t know what to say. And now that his dad doesn’t live in the same house he’s only got me and Babe around when he brings itup. At least it used to be even in the house…now the scales are tipped and if there’s one thing Bud is sensitive to it’s injustice. IT’S JUST NOT FAIR! Most of the time when he gets on his jealousy kick I feel it’s ok to pull out the “life ain’t fair kid” speech, but in this case, he really feels so sad about it and I don’t know what to do.

So I’m sorry Bud. I wish I could make you feel better, but I’ve got nothing.