I have taken for granted the ease and grace for which I handled the chaos, the first three years, of day-to-day life with twins. Not just life with twins in those first three years, but life with twin infants and a toddler. Keeping one child alive was one thing, but keeping a toddler alive and two infants was a whole new set of balls to juggle. My first two requirements were always met each morning: keep the kids alive and keep myself alive. Mom success and I was winning. The number one question my friends and new mom friends ask is, how did I do it. How did I get up everyday and maintain a positive attitude, not completely lose my shit, and still manage to raise three really incredible people? Continue reading “Put on Your Best Face”
My jaw literally dropped when I heard the words from Bill Hybels. Sitting in a crowded worship center with The Chad and a couple of our friends, I was overcome with vindication. Screaming in my head, “YES! YES! My God, YES!” The Global Leadership Summit was speaking my truth, my life, suddenly everything came into focus and the validation was freeing. Continue reading “Figure it Out and Don’t Call Me”
How to Stay Frugal While Looking for a Job
Many Americans struggle with unemployment. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the unemployment rate stands at 4.1 percent as of December 2017. If you find yourself currently looking for a job, then it can seem extremely stressful trying to find work while keeping food in your stomach and a roof over your head. The job search can take weeks or even months, but luckily, there are various ways for you to stretch your money so that you can comfortably live without a job for the time being.
This month one of my dearest friends had her very first child. I could not be more elated for her and her fiance. I could not be more ecstatic that she has been reaching out to me for advice as she maneuvers the road of motherhood. In all of our talks what I have found is how our society has created an environment where they prepare us to be a parent in every clinical and technical sense. These parenting classes sell all the beauty and excitement of the new mom smell. Yet all of these parenting classes, coaching, and boot camps fail to prepare parents, especially moms, for the emotional gauntlet that they run in their first hours, days, weeks (and beyond) of becoming a mother. Continue reading “The New Mom Smell”
Ecocentric mom delivers a curated experience of wholesome product discovery for moms and moms to be. Join Ecocentric Mom during your pregnancy to discover great ethical brands and awesome products you may never have seen in stores near you. As you grow in your motherhood journey, change your subscription to receive the mom and baby box, which also has goodies for your little one. For moms of older kids â€“ or anyone at all – the mom box is a great choice. Best of all, everything in your box is 100% healthy â€“ good for you and the world around you. EcoCentric Mom Subscription box does the research, so you donâ€™t have to, with each monthly delivery containing handpicked items for you, your baby, and your family. Continue reading “EcoCentric Mom Subscription Box Giveaway”
Not all baby lotions are alike. Not all organics are the same either. When an organics company comes along that offers products for all stages of baby and motherhood you cannot help to take notice. Especially when the product is more than a gimmick and more than just a brand, but an organization that is passionate about organics and creating safe products for babies, children, mama’s and beyond. This is the story of Earth Mama Angel Baby.Â Continue reading “Organic Baby Lotion for More than Just Babies”
Many moons ago I wrote this angry post about Mother’s Day and how horribly it sucked. I was a terrible communicator back then, my writing was uber raw, so my well intentions to support mothers in an everyday fashion went awry. I have since modified that post and felt it needed a revival from the years ago about why Mothers Day sucks. Continue reading “When Mothers Day Sucks”
One morning I sat in my Jeep and sobbed, I sobbed until nothing was left as I gasped for air and felt like my chest was being wrung by a medieval rack. Emotions completely dislocated from my body and exhausted from the torment. That is the day I realized how much I hated apologies. I found myself retching in oppression because I could no longer be unapologetic. I struggled to just be myself.
The Chad watched me as I sobbed, helpless to carry my burden. The burden of sheer and total brokenness. The girl with an untamed spirit. The blond haired girl with wild ideas of making the world a better place, snake bitten wit and selflessness only assigned to saints. All broken. Continue reading “Unapologetic me”
A friend of mine posted the other day about how Facebook has turned into a feed of others posting videos they have seen and no longer a forum for conversation. His comment was profound to say the least.
“Do people still actually post things here or is just a forum to share videos you found on the internet?”
Our social media venues have become more of the anti social media as we fail to engage one another. Social media (Facebook, Twitter, Instagram) seem to have transformed into venues of mental masturbation to help pass the minutes as we exercise, exercise bowel movements and or exercise our lack of effort into our careers and selves.
Many a late nights I used to delve into Twitter and Facebook. Twitter especially, as I engaged on many a conversations, albeit some superficial “mom talk,” as my twins were much younger and I found an online community of other women who had the same subscription of life. Bantering, high level disagreements and even some catty non-sense. However, the result was all the same. Conversation.
Today I see Twitter as a monologue, at best. Almost like a telemarketing convention where all of the sellers are dialing out to potential consumers with their tweets in hopes someone will buy their sales pitch. I was saddened to see my own church guilty of the same actions. Services were provided with a hashtag to “join the conversation.” Really? Who would we be conversing with? Other members I suppose, but I found that to be very anti social as well with other members tweeting, never actually engaging in a dialogue.
Facebook has transformed itself into much of the same fashion…coupled with the sisterhood of Instagram. Timelines are littered with selfies and no longer original and or beautiful content. I have watched these two venues turn into a cesspool of narcissism interlaced into being “social.” Social would be how many likes you received for your newest photo and nothing really ever of a conversation.
Have we let our new technology and new forms of communication dilute, if not totally eliminate, any true forms of communication or dialogue? Or is this the way we communicate now these days with pictures, videos, selfies and emoticons? How do we begin to converse with one another again?
With advancements of technology and forms of communication have we catapulted ourselves into the age of anti social media? Recalling an email I received from my dad about 10 years ago, he provided me his new phone number when he was living in Iowa and said, “text me if you want to talk.” I replied and guffawed at such a request, “I don’t text Dad.” Was I flippant, naive, optimistic that communication would remain status-quo? Maybe a combination of all three, never in my wildest dreams would I consider communicating with my parents, let alone my friends in such a fashion. Never would I have imagined creating a blog when just six months pregnant to detail the chronology of my twins in utero, their lives thereafter, our lives in their entirety as a collective over the past eight years.
I suppose since our lives are so busy, social media helps to keep us abreast of all of friends goings-on. Maybe we help show them our interests with the different shares and social likes through Facebook and Twitter. Social media has helped us connect with one another instantly and receive updates on breaking events in the blink of an eye as opposed to waiting for the following day or the late evening newscast. Yet, we seem to be more anti social because we have updates so frequently, so immediate that we can even sever friendships with the click of a button, block the information we receive, filter our lives to seem, feel and look perfect.
Have these “social” venues created an opportunity of anti social behavior?
Social media has allowed us to avoid having meaningful and legitimate dialogues with the click of a button, removing people from our lives when conversations become crucial. While we can connect immediately, we can disconnect just as easily. As opposed to having a healthy dialogue, we just shut the conversation down with block, delete, un-follow, unlike. We can avoid sharing how our lives are imperfect by sharing some of the best photos of the day when the picture behind the camera would suggest normal humanity, beautifully broken. Suddenly we have keyboard muscles that we exert as our form of exercise, because to exercise our mental capacity to accept diversity that something is less than perfect or a comment is less than favorable we remove the threat. Our behavior on social media is dramatically different that in person, acting as if we lack any inhibition to hurting another because we may not actually have real life interaction with people.
Have you found yourself in the vortex of anti social media? Have you found you are only sharing videos and other posts and never really engaging in real, healthy conversations or dialogues? Has your social media become a monologue and not a dialogue?
I loved my job at the bank. I love my beliefs, my God. The two, however, did not love one another, a constant battle that resulted in my being fired. My family began to suffer due to extenuating and unnecessary demands for my time at work. I was engulfed in my ambitions to climb this imaginary ladder to a pinnacle with no peak. Best efforts to rise above, think outside the box to improve processes and mitigate negative customer impact resulted in negative blow back. I had to pay taxes for being a woman in the corporate game where I refused to fall on my knees in an act of fellatio to the men that controlled the future of my career. A hidden blessing came from my termination, a lesson about having faith.
What I lacked was faith.
On this day one year ago I was subject to a bank sanction for my transgress questioning regarding neglect of escalated customer files. Toe-to-toe with senior leaders, respectably inquiring of laxity on such high profile reviews. My bold actions came with an expense as my career teetered with my every breath. The sanction was harsh based on my principal to forgo a meeting with my superior and his superior. As a woman I felt bullied, ganged up on and terrified to be in a closed door meeting with my boss. He was repugnant with violent outbursts, mistrust, berating actions, I feared him. So with that, the sentence was issued for 12 months where I was hamstrung to initiate any emails to anyone above my pay grade and in the event any of my actions were seen contrary to senior leadership direction I would be subject to termination.
Devastated. I held strong as I choked down the pain and a bit of my pride. Upon returning to my desk one of my employees saw me distraught and offered comfort. She stood strong in her faith and offered to pray with me, right then, in the office. Her prayer offered comfort and strength in a time where I was floundering without. Keeping my composure was out of the question. I gasped for air through tears, heartbreak and the overwhelming amount of love and kindness from my subordinate.
What I learned in that moment, in that prayer, in my retching state, was how out of control the events were and how little I could control; how I needed to have faith.
The months following resulted in frustration, anger, my patience began to wear thin at home due to my restrictions in the workplace. Struggling to deal with these frustrations, they were improperly misdirected to my family. I began to dive deeper into scripture. I sought comfort and relief in prayer to pacify my unrest and provide answers. Everyday I prayed for a new job. Praying to be away from the tyrant who I had to answer to on a daily basis. I prayed for him to gain wisdom because his doltish ways made me want to slap my palm to my face, repeatedly.
My prayers were being heard, as each day I found more strength to tolerate my job. Job interviews were rolling in and my outlook was positive and the bleakness began to subside. However, offers for said jobs were less than forthcoming. By this time I was a month into my corrective action and I attended a conference on prayer. Bold, direct prayers were what we needed and while those prayers are not always answered right away or the way we want them to be answered, an answer will one day come nonetheless. So I stayed the course and kept on with my prayers. I was a step closer to understanding and gaining faith.
Staying the course led me into the mouth of the serpent on June 19th, 2014 as my employment was terminated from Wells based on violation of their ethics policy. The policy that I so strongly upheld based on the vision of the organization. Great irony and peace was found in my termination, and on that day my faith was made stronger. I prayed to escape the confines of the misogynist who I believed controlled my future and career. Granted my release was through termination, I was able to identify my blessing; my faith was cemented in the fact that this one event would transform my entire being and life.
How deluded I was to think such horrific thoughts that this puny, mortal man would carry such a weight. My God carried more weight and power than he did. On that day I felt an amazing peace and strength as I shook my former boss’ hand and I wished him well. Even though I was the one who was terminated, I had the strength, class and happiness to accept my fate. That was faith I had felt in the Lord as He guided me through that moment.
From that day I have had nothing but faith.
I prayed each day to guide me through, to show me where I needed to be in life and with my family. Prayer for assistance through my unemployment, to provide financially. I asked to be shown what He was willing for me in my life. Pleasantly surprised by the answer of I had extra time on my hands, so I began writing again. A love I have forgotten to resort to when my brain was overflowing with words and thoughts. Think Dumbledore and his Pensieve. My writing has helped open doors for me that I had previously left dormant, my expression let me explore gifts I never exploited previously. The world was a keystroke away.
Prayers showed me how deep my faith truly was when I asked to provide for my family, my children, especially when Christmas was around the corner. So I made the struggling decision to tithe, at the ten percent, when I had so little. My meager earnings I was bringing into our home was what little I could do to honor my Father, but it was enough in His eyes. Gigs began to roll in, finances began to improve little by little, Christmas was in more than an abundance. He saw me through, God deepened my faith by showing me his great will for me, my family, my life.
Time was utilized more wisely as I began volunteering more at my church. Applying my knowledge in various capacities benefited others and I was beyond joy to help so selflessly. My nature is benevolent with every fiber, so I was eager to share my dexterity in a multitude of areas within the organization that so deeply touched my life. This is what he was calling me to do.
Fleeting moments would wave over me of panic, grief, fear. I would be celebratory with joy, overcome by anger, frustration, and then emotional exhaustion. While I would have momentary lapses and succumb to the weakness, faith is what carried me through. Praying in the heat of that moment got me through. God, carried me through. I was meant to feel the pain, to work through my feelings, I needed to learn what He was telling me. The uncertainty was all part of the learning process. Learning to have unwavering faith in the face of our darkest moments. Moments that we would dwell upon, share with others; misery loves company, but I just couldn’t share with anyone else but Him.
When I would apply for positions I was more than amply qualified for, hear nothing in response to those applications, I learned to have faith. When I questioned why I didn’t get those jobs, my daughter would come to me and beg that I not go back to work as her eyes welled with tears, I had faith. When finances began to strain, I dug in with my tithing and never faltered, I had faith and then He provided. Hebrews 11:1 speaks of faith, “Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.” I hoped for happiness, success, freedom. All of those were provided for me because I prayed enough, believed in my bold prayers enough, had enough faith that this wouldn’t be easy, but my outcome would be the most beneficial.
I could not see that my happiness, success, and freedom was within me, God given. I just had to see what made me happy was being myself and not letting others try to change who I was, who I am. I just had to see that my success was in the eyes of the beholder; three priceless sets of blue eyes who saw that I could create in my kitchen what Van Gogh did on canvas. More so was the partial stranger who read this blog and sang praises of the raw beauty in life and the emotions I painted from writing about those moments.Â I found an immense faith in being fired when I learned to see. I just had to see that my freedom was in letting go, relinquishing control of a life so out of control, having faith of His greater plan for me.