Tell me something I do not know…

I will never forget watching a certain movie, in which, a inspirational and unbreakable artist, came out and literally laid down freestyle lyrics that shook the most unshakeable. It was unexpected, diverse, raw, and completely one hundred percent truth and regardless, he did what no one else saw coming. He spoke of himself. He laid everything out, his imperfections, mistakes, struggles, moments where he looked like a fool, but knew if anyone was going to call him out, he mine as well, do it himself, before anyone else had the chance.

That is Iconic, Pivotal, Deep. Why? Because, he knew in that moment, when he choked before, he knew what was coming. It was at that moment when realization hit. Battle or not, what other’s think they may have known about him, he took it to another level. He laid it out before they could because he actually lived it, endured it,  and was one hundred percent real, without the shame.

To me, that is priceless. He embraced every up and down in his life. I believe, we all face the same life changing moment in our lives, where we stop caring about what other’s think or say and refocus reminding ourselves of who we are. At the end of the day, no one knows what it is like to walk in your shoes, but only God and you alone, and that is all that matters.

I use to care and worry about what other’s may think when I would began to explain my life and situation. What was in the past, where it lead to, or is at now. Whether it was a personal fear of not being accepted, shame, disappointment, or guilt. But, like the iconic artist above, that is where I stopped caring. And one of my personal outlets came into play, and ultimately brought me to a place where I am perfectly quick to be upfront about my life, humbled of course, because no one will know what I have faced by God himself alone. Life is full of judgement, lies, false conceptions.

However, the most beautiful thing that lays deep in those words, is that being at peace, humbled and maintaining your faith with whatever is going on even on the days that seem the worst of the worst, is what should lift you up, versus bring you down. I have learned that life is like a roller coaster. People come and go, relationships that you thought would be long are short lived, lessons are learned, there is love and loss, but that doesn’t mean it ends there. It is only the beginning. That is a place to stop, re-evaluate and grow. A personal reminder that everyday is a blessing. Instead of looking at your regrets, count your blessing. Be thankful. Stay humble. And Continuously Pray.

Like the infamous artist I mentioned above, he said it best when he said “If you doubt me, I say it proudly, I am outtie…here tell these people something they don’t know about me”….   Eminem

Stay true to yourself. Self Love. Don’t change for anyone. When in doubt, know you’ve got this!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Don’t Lose Yourself…

In life, we all have expectations, regardless, whether, it is growing old with someone they thought they loved, having a family and then watching their own children have children of their own as you watch them together from the front porch old and gray, to maybe exploring life to its fullest potential. I know we try to do the right things and they don’t end up the way we wanted it to be, the irony lays underneath what no one else see’s. In this day of age, it is so simple to place a smile on ones face to hide the pain or hurt, damage, or destruction that you endure, because at the end of the day, no one wants anyone to know what they have faced in their life. So, they hide it, with smiles, laughter but not knowing that person struggles with their own regrets, mistakes and burdens that lay deeper than one eye can see.

The key to living a beautiful life, is to love yourself first. You can come into contact with so many amazing people which could fill your life with those things that you eagerly need and want, however, if you don’t find love within yourself first, that will never happen. There will always be a void. Something that won’t ever feel complete, a void that no one, can ever fill, unless you fill it yourself. Personally, I have come to the realization that, I can’t possibly give the best of who I am without, first, loving every part of who I am and in a sense, including all of my own imperfections. Many people want to be loved and feel loved, but when you look at the overall picture, how is it possible to even be able to accept that kind of love, when you do not take the time to self evaluate and reflect on who you are as a person, let alone love someone else. It is crazy to even think that is even fair to the other person in whom you are trying to base a relationship with or possibly growing a future with.

I have come across some of the most incredibly amazing people in my life, ones that have had such an impact in my own life, memories that will never fade. I keep those close to me. When you take the time to reflect, there are many things that start to happen, you begin to realize who you are, what you expect and most importantly, what you want in life. I have been through a divorce, one I wouldn’t wish upon anyone else, but throughout the entire process, I stayed humble, and what I found is that God placed certain people into my life that won’t ever be able to be replaced. From one, whom welcomed me into her home, to having great conversation and YES, making me dinner, Salmon to be exact, to another, who never left my side and treated my own children as if, they were his, from Paw Patrol, to Endless Snacks, Easter Bunny, Cards with P&M, VA Beach with R&A and Reese. These are the moments that I keep close to my heart.

Regardless of what life may bring you, knowing at the end of the day, who you are, NOT, what you think others think of you, is essential. Self love comes from within. The last thing you want to do, is to allow others judgement effect your thoughts or change how you feel inside. We are all imperfect. It is like going out into the night and seeing the stars, waking up and not seeing the same stars there, even though, they are still there, you just can’t see them. Your light will shine, day or night, it is how you choose to walk each day, either for you or for others. I know, I would rather walk another day that God has given me, by myself, working on who I am and becoming a better version of me than wasting the time God has graciously given me for a purpose that is not mine.

Love yourself. Point Blank. You owe it yourself. Don’t ever give up. Keep your faith, head up and be thankful that you have an opportunity to grow first within yourself. You are full of potential, all you have to do, is stay true to who you are and no matter what, stay humble.

Why Failure Is Essential, Yes! Failure…

More often times than others, the idea of failure occurs weekly, if not daily in our lives. Yes, I said it, failing, occurs most likely more than you realize. But, let’s take a second and think about what failing means. From the biggest obstacles in life, to the simple everyday things we plan or expect to do, often lead to failure. And that is okay.. Many view failing as such a horrible and negative thing, however, failure is necessary in order to achieve success. Yes! Failure is needed to achieve success. Why, you might ask? Well, it is pretty simple, every time we think we are failing, we are only growing and getting better. Sometimes we set ourselves up for failure without recognizing it, until it happens. But going through the process and taking the time to step back and look at what was done versus what could have been done, is actually the starting point that leads to success. Because, in hind sight, when you take the time to reflect and understand what led to that certain key moment or moments, you are starting to shift your mindset and into the right direction in which you start to unknowingly achieve success, whether you realize it or not.

Listen, we have all been through times of failure, in which we either learned from, reflected upon, or thought to ourselves, what we could have done differently. And that is what leads to achieving success. I am a firm believer in self reflection, as I think it is essential and a vital must in order to grow: whether it is personally, emotionally, physically or financially. I know I have failed more times than succeeded, however, falling straight on my face and at times, where I thought it couldn’t be done, I kept going and moving forward, that in itself is a success. Now, did that bring me financial wealth? Was I rewarded? Did I get recognized? Of course not, but what I do know is that because of those failures, I got stronger, I learned lessons I wouldn’t have learned had I not failed, and most importantly, I never stopped or quit. In my eyes, that is success in itself.

As I sit here and write about this topic, failure, the first thing that comes to mind is the emotion, “Fear”. Whether that is fear by itself or fear of the unknown. As I said above, often times, we already set ourselves up to fail by our own insecurities or emotions. And “Fear” to me, is the most disguised, inner, gut wrenching emotion we can have. It is because of “Fear” we have already failed. If you were to take a step back and look at this entire topic of “Failure Leads to Success”, and said to yourself, well that’s not me, I don’t have anything to fear. I would flip it and ask you, “Has there been a time where you could of done something but didn’t because you didn’t know how it was going to end up?” or “Did you have a chance to meet someone, but were unsure of what may happen then or in the future, and suddenly backed out? or even maybe “I have a great job opportunity that could really further my career but the job I have is doing well for me and I am not sure I am making the right decision if I choose to change careers?”. Well those three scenarios, stem from fear and the unknown, hence, only sets you up for failure.

The beautiful thing about failure is that regardless, it’s an opportunity to grow and change. That is success. If done appropriately, failure can be quite the opposite, as it should be used to drive you to re-evaluate, self-reflect, shift your mindset, change the direction and motivate you to correct your steps, which most often leads to achieving success. Small or Large, obstacles occur daily, failing occurs daily, but it is how you look at what is not working that makes failing worth the satisfaction. So, the next time you think you failed at something, remind yourself, this failure is not going to get the best of me, it is only going to motivate me to keep going until I achieve my goals. Ideally, by the time you are done, if you were not strong before, you are even more so now.

The worst thing, you can do is misinterpret, failure with negativity. Failure is and will always be apart of life, but what is so incredibly amazing about failing, is that you get another chance to succeed. And that is worth every failure or failing moment in life, the opportunity to dust yourself off, get back up, and try it again. That is success in itself. Always keep your head up, speak daily positive thoughts, and surround yourself around great supportive people who want to pick you up verse putting you down and I can promise you, no matter what the failure is, if you keep going, success is waiting for you right around the corner!

#FailureLeadsToSuccess #Blog #KeepGoing #Goals #Motivation #NeverGiveUp

 

 

I’m being serious! This is not a joke.

“Could you possibly chew any louder?!” or how about, “Can you crunch on that ice a little more quieter? It sounds like you are chewing on rocks?!”. I will be the first to admit that those questions have been asked to a couple of people in my life one too many times. And while it may sound ridiculous, there is something about these kinds of things that really get under my skin, I mean really, really get under my skin. But why you might ask? Well, it goes way deeper than you think.

For as long as I can remember, there were things that other’s would do, that a normal person might not even pay attention to, but as for me, it would drive me nuts. Specifically, certain noises. For instance, lip smacking, slurping, gulping, chewing with your mouth open, teeth grinding, nail clipping, snoring, snifling, and so many others, that it’s too many to count. Anytime my ears would tune into those things, something emotionally was triggered that set me internally cringing immediately.

To this day, those same exact things still bother me and not until recently did I even know it had a name. That was until my husband came home one day and said you know I read an article and it has a name, you should look it up. At that moment, I was kind of caught off guard because I really didn’t have any idea about what he was talking about, so I kind of just went along with it. Then he said there is a name for why you get easily irritated with certain sounds, look it up and later that night I googled it and my mouth dropped instantaneously. My husband was right! (Yeah, I know, we wives don’t usually admit to them being right, but he was!)

Have you ever heard about Misophonia? If not, please google it. Because it is real. Now the funny thing about this whole thing is that a couple weeks after, I was having a conversation with my sister in law about my older brother and I couldn’t help but to laugh out loud. She was telling me a story about how easily my brother got irritated at certain sounds, like the ones I mentioned above. As I was laughing, and with a look of uncertainty on her face, I continued to tell her that I also react the same way and ironically, never knew it was a “real” phobia until my husband brought it to my attention. From there, the stories kept coming. And more laughs followed.

Although I have researched this phobia and believe it holds some kind of validity, I will continue to take it with a grain of salt and yield to those internal emotions. But in the mean time, I thought it would be funny to open up about something I have never really shared with anyone. Because quite frankly, I know there are many others out there who have the same feelings when it comes to the annoying sounds that sends chills down our spines!

I firmly believe vulnerability is the ice breaker to oneself fully opening up, putting down the exterior barriers and doing so without fear or an apprehensive dread of rejection but instead with a humbling heart and a peaceful mind.

Grace & Peace

 

The pursuit of happiness when lost in transition

In my very first blog, I wrote about going from a working career woman to a stay at home mommy, something I have always wanted to do but never could because the opportunity never arose. That all changed September 14, 2015. While starting this new journey, I thought it would be a great idea to video journal, because 1) It was much easier and faster to do than physically writing and 2) I could go back at any moment and actually view my expressions while speaking about what that day might of held.

For the first couple of weeks, I would go back and view the videos I had done and visually see the excitement all over my face. Even when talking about cleaning the entire house, there was me, grinning ear to ear. I actually enjoyed cleaning the house from top to bottom everyday, and probably because that was the first time in a while where I could do that and not have all my energy and focus strictly on the other daily issues of “work” and it’s demands, physically and emotionally. My time spent was 100% concentrated on the duties of being a Mother and Wife and I loved it.

Going on almost 3 months, I still love it, however, I feel like while I am on this journey to my personal pursuit of happiness, I have, in a way become lost in the transition. My mind and heart are in two different places. I am too critical on myself and that comes from my internal thoughts while at the same time, my heart is telling me to be patient. I have always been an inpatient person, but through experiences, I know that when enduring certain struggles or circumstances, patience leads to a greater hope and most importantly, stronger faith.

Somehow this once extroverted person has become an introverted mommy. Is that even possible? All I know is that finding peace in that internal change has become more of a challenge than reassurance. The last video I did was a couple weeks ago, the last time I watched it was a week after I took it. From that day, I have not watched it since nor have I recorded another one. I can remember watching the tears fall down my face as I openly recorded my thoughts and questioned the reasons why something could happen like it did. A moment that has slightly set me back emotionally but I have chosen to not let it overcome me, because my faith is deeper, the hope I have is well secured and the foundation it’s built on is solid and unbreakable.

While it is clearly taking some time, more than I originally thought, to get fully adjusted from a full time career woman to a stay at home mommy, the pursuit to happiness is still focused right where it should be, on my family. As far as what lies ahead, I leaving that up to God, for he is faithful!

As a graceful mommy, I will be the first to admit, I always need reminders and in my room, on my wall, is this verse below. It is the first thing I see in the morning and the last one I see at night. It gives me encouragement, and most especially , strength in times of uncertainty.

*She is clothed with STRENGTH and DIGNITY and she laughs without FEAR of the FUTURE* Proverbs 31:25

Grace & Peace

Finding Peace During The Holiday Seasons

It’s here. The HOLIDAYS! Thanksgiving has already come and gone, which is quite remarkable, seeing we, as humans, kind of wait all year for this time of year. And as everyone knows, one of the biggest holiday’s, if not, the BIGGEST, is only a couple weeks away. Yes, Christmas!! From putting up all the decorations, to shopping for loved ones and hopefully, gathering family around the table to enjoy one another’s company and best of all, the food. It just sounds like a joyous celebration! 

However, when I personally think about these two special holiday’s, the first emotions that are felt are not normally what you would think a graceful mommy usually experiences. Unfortunately, when it comes to being honest and open, I am not ashamed to admit it. To be truthful, I get anxious and overwhelmed immediately following Halloween. It happens every year and for reasons that are mainly based on my past experiences. 

In my 20’s, as many young people do, we make mistakes, and sometimes those mistakes can cost you. Whether those costs come as personal setbacks or even in the aspect of broken relationships, they at one time, held some kind of value and usually, as times passes, once what was, will never be the same again. (No matter how much effort is placed into finding resolution) 

Before I had my son, 2 years ago, my heart was wired a little different, it was to say the least, not so graceful. In a matter of 8 years, I let the circumstances and relational difficulties get the best of me and to the point where my heart was so hardened, it was full of bitterness and resentment. Forgiving was not an option. To make it worse, when the Holiday’s would come near, it was even more difficult to put on a “front”. It came to a point that I had to do that, just so I could get through a couple of hours spent with outside members of our family. (Reading that, it sounds pretty bad, but I’m sorry, it was the honest truth!)

Like I mentioned above, that all changed once my son was born. I knew I was pregnant before I even tested positive and I can remember looking in the mirror at work and just holding my tummy full of smiles. From the point, I thought everything would change for the better. Family would come together, etc. but that wasn’t the whole case. A couple months after his birth, and probably one of the worst holiday’s ever, I told myself something has to change, I can’t keep enduring these feelings anymore. Now, it had nothing to do with my Husband nor my children, but it was years and years of the same old repetitive nonsense. At one of my weakest moments, I got on my knees, waved my white flag like a mad man and surrendered. I had finally had enough. 

A couple weeks later, a life changing event happened and I met the person of Jesus Christ and to this day, I wouldn’t change it for anything!

Everything changed that amazing Sunday; personally, emotionally, and spiritually. Those feelings I used to have that were engraved in my heart, were wiped away, as if they never existed. That once hardened heart was now more soft spoken, tender, loving, humbling and forgiving. Imagine a vase being thrown on the ground and broken into a thousand pieces and knowing there is no way it can be fixed, it’s damaged goods. That is what how I envisioned myself but thankfully, I have been gracefully put back together. And that’s a gift that was definitely not earned nor was I even worthy of it.

I know there will be days, especially around the holiday’s, where I will automatically, in nature, try to withdraw and seclude myself. That has been a habit of mine for almost 8 years and it will take more than these 2 years to move past this natural instinct that has become so accustomed to me. I can’t force outside family members to engage with me, when their heart is not there, and I have finally come to peace with those emotions and have moved past that. But what I can do, is pray and continue to pray. Prayer is powerful.

I am not perfect; I am human. I will make mistakes and probably more than I would like, but as long I am focused on the true purpose of these Holiday’s and their meanings, I shouldn’t fear what lies ahead, instead embrace each moment with hugs, kisses and “I Love You’s”. 

As Thanksgiving has passed and Christmas soon approaches, I hope each of you are filled with laughter, hugs, kisses, and TONS of “I Love You’s”. Most of importantly, I pray each of you are surrounded with those whom you love and cherish! 

Oh, I almost forgot, last but not least, don’t forget to gather up all your kiddo’s, light the Christmas Tree, pop some popcorn, cuddle up and watch lots and lots of Christmas Movie Classics. (Because you are never too old for this perfect timeless tradition)

Some of my personal favorite’s are listed below…

The Christmas Story

How the Grinch Stole Christmas

National Lampoons Christmas Vacation

ELF

Home Alone 1 & 2

Shrek the halls

Polar Express

Grace and Peace 🙂

 

 

No one ever said it was going to be easy!

As a child, I grew up in a family surrounded by a mindset of hard work pays off, an idea that with persistent dedication, hard work and motivation, success and accomplishments would soon follow. I started working at the age of 15. Now mind you, I grew up with 3 brothers and being the only “girl” in the family, I had more testosterone than estrogen, which kind of worked in my favor and surely used to my advantage in certain circumstances. But what I gained out of those relationships with my brothers would come into play later in life.

Being taught and surrounded by men most of my life, I became more aggressive and assertive in the career field. I knew that with that mindset that was so deeply embedded in my brain that if I wanted something, I would have to work harder, longer hours and practically, dedicate my entire self to successfully achieve my goals. Approximately, 7 1/2 years ago, I started a career that I knew would take me to where I ultimately wanted to be. Even with prior experience, I took a demotion and from the bottom worked myself up the career ladder. I used what I knew best to climb from one step to the next, knowing that with each step, It was paying off. Was it easy? By no means! It was exhausting, stressful, and extremely physically demanding; the idea of walking out to your car and you being the only one left in the building or parking lots spoke volumes to me. But it didn’t stop me! I kept going.

After 5 years of dedicated work, I finally achieved my goal. I was in charge of a multi-specialty medical office and loved every moment of it. As I said before, it still wasn’t easy, it was quite the opposite. However, something about the pressure to succeed made me even more motivated to work harder, to please as many people as I could, to show others that there are people out there that truly care! It came to a point where I started to realize that all the hard work that I had done for 7 1/2 years was so heart driven, I often placed 95% of my hard work and dedication on my career and not on my family!

The moment of realization weighed heavy on me for a couple months. I am a very detailed organized person and always working with the intent to satisfy other’s, however, as the months passed by the heaviness grew more and more with each passing day. The thoughts of the people whom I grew to think of as my family for 7 1/2 years crossed my mind numerous time throughout the day. How much I would miss them if I left, or how much I would miss the people who I got to see every 3,6 or 12 months that I became attached to. Those emotions played a huge role in my decision and what probably kept me there longer than expected.

When so much heaviness is weighing on one’s shoulders, it hard to ignore, which finally brought me to the decision that would change my life forever. Thankfully, I have an incredible husband who has worked and continues to work so hard to allow me to do what I have always dreamed. That is to be a stay at home mom. His support was the final factor in this decision. I probably won’t ever forget my last day of work because it was as if I was leaving my 2nd family behind. Relationships that will stay with me forever. It was by far the hardest thing I have ever done because I was taking what I knew best and stepping into a world of the unknown. It just sounds frightening!

It has been 2 months since I left the career world and started this journey as a stay at home mommy, I often (sometimes too much) question if I did the right thing. No one ever said being a stay at home mommy would be easy, because I know I have said this before, It’s NOT! But, what I fight too often inside emotionally, is with the fact, that I don’t get to see the people whom I’ve spent the last 7 1/2 years with on a daily basis, because too many times, they cross my mind numerous amounts of times a day!

Is it bad that after 2 months, I still think about my fellow co-workers constantly? Even the one’s whom I never would of even thought about before. I often ponder the thought, If they themselves are managing well, if they are doing okay? It is odd and strange to admit that even after this long period of time, I still have my whole office sitting in a box in the back of my car trunk, as if I am just on a leave of absence, or mini vacation?  To this day, I can’t help but to wonder if all the work that I used to do is being completed in a timely, efficient and effective manner, or is it piling up day after day? It is so bad that first thing in the morning, my brain is preparing for a phone call from someone who is about to call out before I am even awake and yet I left that all behind more than 60 days ago. For whatever reason, it’s as though, my mind and heart have not detached from the old way of life.

I struggle with the fact that because I have worked since I was 15 years old and that’s what I know best, I question if I’m even doing this whole new stay at home mommy thing right! When those thoughts start to cross my mind, it brings me back emotionally to the all the questions above. But why? Is it because it became so familiar to me? Or is it because, in my heart, I know those 7 1/2 years, I put endless amounts of time, dedication and practically my sweat and tears into every moment of every day.

There was passion behind what I was doing and accomplishing. It brought me happiness in a way that could be seen by a smile on someone’s face or even a simple appreciation voiced by a “Thank You”. In those moments, all the sacrifices I made on a daily basis, made sense. That was the motivation behind the driving force and most likely, is still the cause of the inability to detached myself from what I loved to do. This is what I would call a heart and mind issue, and it doesn’t change in my new career field either, as a stay at home mommy, it is probably even more intense now than ever.

I know I can’t be the only one who fights internally with these emotions because I think that is the basis of being a mother in general, career working or stay at home mom, it is clearly the thought process of a woman. We are always second guessing ourselves and for the life of me, I can’t seem to figure out why. My husband tells me all the time how great of a job I am doing, while I am expressing to him, the total opposite. Isn’t that simply profound. You can be told your doing the greatest job but if you, yourself, don’t feel it then something is off, whether that is a heart issue or a mind issue, there has to be some kind of adjustment.

I think that while I struggle with these inner emotions, deep inside I know I have made the right decision, which was primarily focused and intended for the sake of my families best interest, it might take a couple more months to get physically and emotionally settled with this life changing decision. Just because being a stay at home mommy might seem quite easy and less stressful, it is not, it is actually more work and much more demanding.

When I started this off, I mentioned I grew up with the mindset of hard work pays off. I firmly believe, this applies to any situation. So, on that note, I am going to take the knowledge that has been embedded into my mind since I was a child and gracefully use it to the fullest of my abilities as my job is no longer in the career world but now 100% focused on my family. Because no one ever said this was going to be easy!