Daughter-Sister-Friend-Wife-Mother: In that exact order. Other than that I continue to have no idea who I truly am! I take my husband Santo, my sons- Antonio and Marco, and my daughter Sofia on this bumpy road of self-discovery. I thank God everyday that I don't have to go it alone!!
I am a fighter.. well, I’m not sure I believe it entirely but in some small way I am a fighter. I’m choosing to celebrate and acknowledge that today, especially since what I want to do is the complete opposite. I want to stay in bed and never see the sun.. at least for a few days. I’m hoping in sharing the small ways I am a fighter, you will also see that you are a fighter.
I persevered and completed college at a great University (not Ivy League), but pretty damn good- in my opinion. I got in on basically academic probation. It was called FFP (aka Freshmen fuck up program, as known by all the students). I ended up graduating with a high B average. Not bad for a fuck up!!! Not honors but whatever. No one walks around with their GPA on their forehead, it’s meaningless people.
I did not get accepted into graduate school on my first try. I decided not to let that stop me and I took a class to improve my GRE score while also taking and acing a graduate course. I applied again and got into that graduate school!
I have difficult clients and families to work with in my occupation, and I could easily change clients. I stick with every difficult family, in hopes of learning something and/or winning them over. I think in my 15 years of working, I’ve only missed the mark with one mom. Well, that I know of anyways.
I stopped working out for a year but I haven’t given up. I started working out again and even joined a gym to keep me motivated. Hey even if it’s once a week it counts. I will not give up again! My health and sanity are important to me! I want to be around to bug my kids for a lot longer! I want to be able to run with my grandchildren and swing them around!
I keep trying out for plays and doing pretty well-for an amateur
I am still married 🙂 Just kidding, if you’re reading this hubby! I’m so lucky you choose to put up with me daily!
I continue to make my children play piano, even though I’d rather they give it up. It would save us all some headaches!
I get out of bed every day! So what if you wake up before 7 a.m. That’s all semantics, anyways. I get up before 9 a.m. and that’s all that matters.
On bad days, I drink some coffee or alcohol (depends on how bad it is) and I tell myself tomorrow is another day to get it right. Shake it off, sista!!
I face my demons… well, maybe I perseverate on them- but there’s that semantics again!! The point is, I eventually stuff them away. Hey even if it’s for a week- It’s a victory!!
When I look around and get overwhelmed, I call in reinforcement: cleaning lady, handyman, landscapers. I can’t do this on my own!
My house may be messy during the week, but come weekend it is usually showroom ready!!
Everyday I feel so lonely and disconnected but I make myself go out there, smile, and talk to people. I often invite people over to avoid this feeling.
I am constantly re-evaluating myself and figuring out how I can change and improve myself. I’m not going down without a fight!
SO now that I shared with you some of my accomplishments over my demons. In true people pleasing fashion, I will end by telling you what I struggle with. I can’t end this with you thinking that I love myself. I’m not comfortable with pride-It’s actually a sin I hear. Things I need to work on: worrying about things I can’t control, trying to please others, feelings of inadequacy, and vanity (my self worth is not determined by my looks). The last one is the hardest thing to deal with in this selfie lovin’ world. I wish I could just take one selfie that I’m happy with. No not happening, close ups are no good. Push that camera back a foot or two people.
Let me begin my cliche blog for today. Sorry to bore you with this mommy stuff but it’s what I’m feeling right now. I am sure others can relate. The blogs are overflowing with first day of school moments from every mommy blogger out there. So I am adding to the junk pile!
This stuff really creeps up on you!! I realize the gravity of this moment. My third child has just entered school full day for the first time ever. This is a milestone for both of us. She now steps into the realm of becoming a grade-schooler and I-well, I’m just not a young stay at home mom anymore. What the hell does that mean? Who the hell am I? I am constantly plagued with this question. Some people really know who they are at an early age. My whole life has been a constant struggle to figure this out. Guess what I think? That’s totally OK. I love that I have spent my life constantly experiencing new things, traveling and meeting all types of people. I have always pushed myself out of my comfort zone. I don’t fit a particular type and I think I might surprise people who actually take the time to get to know me. My friends also don’t fit a particular type. This can make things confusing in your own search for identity, but then again, it makes you realize that you don’t have to be just one thing.
So in this moment… this very brief moment. Yes, I am a grieving mother. I mean this in the exaggerated sense of the word. No disrespect to those people who are truly grieving parents! I walked into the mall the other day without my children and right smack dab in front of my face was the children’s playground. It was filled with young moms and their little ones. I loved the sound of the shrieks, laughter, and … yes, even the tantrums! I literally stopped in my tracks at the entrance of the massive mall and did nothing. I just took it in. My eyes started to get glassy and it hit me. Don’t get me wrong I was so excited to be shopping for a few hours without my children for nothing in particular! However, I realized that part of my life was now over. I would never have those moments again that all those new mom’s were having. For a brief second, I hated them. I wanted it back! Yes! I wanted to be at the mall with my children begging and bribing them to go to one more store. Nursing in the family restroom and drinking smoothies because I had no time for a proper lunch. I actually wanted that emotional roller coaster back! You know why?, because amidst all the chaos there were the hugs and kisses. There were the adoring looks and eyes of wonder. My children brought me joy and gave me a purpose. I was young and didn’t know what I was doing and that was exciting! I met knew people and new families. Every day was a new adventure.
Today I walked away from my kids school for the first time leaving all of them. They will be there all day and I will pick them up after seven hours. This is my new adventure! I will get back to me! I will remember what it’s like to do things for myself. I will work outside the home and watch my children grow up to be wonderful adults. It’s our job to raise them in order to join the world and form their own adventures without us. Now I get to focus on, my, next adventure… let them worry about theirs!
I would like to take this blog in a different direction. Yes, it’s a new day and I’m changing some things but I’m still sharing my thoughts with you. I know you may have been worried with my long break from blogging! Right? I know you were losing sleep over this. Well, now you can relax. I’m back and I’m changing things up a bit!
My plan for this next year in blogging will be to keep my posts short and sweet! I’m not going to bore you anymore… I promise!!! As my blog name states I am very purposeful: goal oriented, driven, and faith focused. However, I am also confused: Everyday and every hour I wear a different hat. It’s hard to keep it all straight. I live in the grey area of life. I guess you would call me a liberal. I don’t believe in black and white. Unless we are truly talking about good and evil. I think everyone can agree on these things.
I am not inspiring and I am not even thought provoking. I don’t claim to be. What I have always wanted out of this blog is to connect with others. I think we can change ourselves in little ways for the better but we can never change who we inherently are.
Please if you are visiting my blog and want to connect please share who you are! We want to hear it!
I’ll begin. I’m a sensitive, fearful, neurotic, strong willed, open-minded, worldly, faith filled, emotional, cackling, go-getting, polite, empath, and generally speaking non-judgmental (unless you are judgmental and mean- then I will judge you!)
Who are you????? I don’t want your titles- I want you to describe yourself! We are so much more than these stupid titles we hold ourselves to. Tell me the good, bad, and the ugly, that is you!
Dreaming is what keeps you alive. It keeps you going and gives you hope. Some days your hope is shattered and dreams seem to be meant for the young. Just keep dreaming, ’cause some books are meant to be short stories and some are destined to be novels. Some are New York Times best sellers and some paperback trash. Either way every story closes with “The End.”
So here is the final and last day of what you can do to spend some quality time with yourself…. READ a book! If you are not one to read then just get an audio book. It is the same thing! Your imagination will be expanded, as well as, your vocabulary– either way you do it!
I am currently taking an acting class and performing in a Shakespeare play, so I read Caesar. However, there are other books that I plan to keep on my nightstand for those times that I want to spend 15-20 min. recharging myself.
This is my list of books I will be reading in the coming year… Well, I hope to read anyway!
If you are interested in summaries on any of these books, please comment and I will happily post!
The first one on my list is Are You My Mother? by Alison Bechdel
“A sequel of sorts to Fun Home, Bechdel’s moving graphic memoir about her father, this one focuses on her mother-a writer and actress whose career went nowhere- and on Bechdel’s own rocky romantic and psychiatric history”
So the journal I bought yesterday, is meant for writing poetry or any other creative things that come to mind- Not so much as a diary. I loved the words on the cover. They completely sum up what I want my 2016 to look like.
Go to the store and pick a journal that you love. If you love what it looks like you might be more inclined to use it. I really want to feel inspired with mine.
I thought I’d share the poem that I wrote during my alone time.
Remember, I am no poet! I am just a girl who wants to get her thoughts and feelings written down. It’s therapeutic. This is not edited.. completely raw.
As another blogger that I admire wrote: Haters Hate, Creators Create!
Yesterday, once again I had planned and desired to do something a bit different but I didn’t have time. I bought an awesome new journal that says exactly what I want my 2016 to be like.
The plan was to take 15-20 min and write some poetry. I prefer to write when the desire comes but I think it’s also important to learn to be disciplined with the creative process and set some guidelines. So at least, I did step #1 and got the journal. I hope to spend some time with it tomorrow. (Which is really going to be later today because I’m writing this entry about yesterday! Last night was busy!)
So anyhow, I technically did do something for myself last night. I had my first rehearsal for the Shakespeare play I’m going to be in this coming March. Wow! That was liberating! The entire afternoon I had to deal with my “needy” children whining and complaining about my rules, asking me to find everything under the sun for them, in order to do their homework, while all three of them ask me questions at the same time! I was losing my mind, but in the back of my head there was peace. I knew that my time would come tonight, when I would get to leave the house for three full hours and do something completely different that gives me such a huge rush!
Please, take my advice and join a group! I’m sorry— if you can sign your kids up for sports, music lessons, chess, art classes etc., and be the taxi driver for everyone- then you definitely deserve once a week to do something that excites you!!!!
Here are some examples of groups you can join:
local swim team
groups at your library: creative writing, scrap booking, gardening
take a continuing education course at your local community college (Photography, dance, writing)
volunteer at a homeless shelter, home for children with special needs, at the hospital, or Feed my Starving Children
join a running group ( I don’t know how anyone could enjoy this- but to each his own!)
Sign up to learn a new language
Take music and/or singing lessons
Take Karate/self defense
Take an art class and learn to draw and/or paint
Join a yoga group
Learn how to ice skate or swim (then you are set for each season!)
Make your own group and ask the library if they will support you and allow you to meet there weekly
join a mom’s group or form your own
Whatever it is that you’ve been thinking about, but never thought you could find the time to do– just ignore those naysayers in your head– and DO IT!!!!
Is there something you admire or have always wanted to learn, since you were little, that keeps creeping back into your thoughts???????????
It’s your sub-conscious telling you something. DO NOT ignore it again!
It’s trying to tell you where your passion lies! Listen to that little child in your head. Those are the dreams and aspirations that your little negative self shot down and tried to shut up. The dreams are still alive and trying to become a reality! It is in your control to make it happen!
Wow! My mornings are always wonderful but as the day progresses I start to drown a bit. Mornings are filled with either cleaning, working out, or part-time work. I’m a speech therapist for children under the age of 3. It is the most rewarding job.. most days. Today was the best. My little kiddo was so excited to see me! She was laughing hysterically and shouting! Who wouldn’t love that to start off their day?
At lunch, I pick my 5 year old up from school and there begins my daily grind. My time is no longer my own, but who’s is, right? Everybody else has to work an 8-5 job. I shouldn’t complain. Still, at times I really don’t think I’m suited for this. Every day is an emotional battle. I work very hard to control myself and be a happy and kind person, but add three kids whining, pouting, complaining, debating, and making obnoxious noises to the mix and I’ve lost it. I’m down in “funky town” trying not to lose my mind. Funky town is that horrible place you go when you become some crazy person that looks nothing like you’re normal calm- cool self. You aren’t showered, hair is looking like buckwheat, mis-matched socks, and pajama pants (oops- I thought I changed those before I went out!) Anyways, from about 11:30-8:30 I just try to keep some sort of sanity so I don’t get taken away in a straight jacket kicking and screaming. Calgon take me away is an understatement!! The thoughts that enter my mind usually are: Why does this have to be my life? There must be some way out of this!!
Handling my children’s self-esteems and teaching them how to emotionally regulate so that they can be happy and functioning human beings is just too big of a responsibility and burden for me! It’s just too much pressure! Still, I signed up for this. There is no way out. I must choose to be happy. The alternative sucks!
So what is making me happy today- meditating. I found some great meditation CD’s at the old Borders bookstore many moons ago and still use them. You can also find some great you tube videos to help if you like or just pop in whatever music you prefer. I lit a candle, played my music and just breathed. I suggest putting a sign on your door so no one interrupts you. That is the key.
If you are taking 15-20 min. to yourself- It must be un-interrupted!! Put this sign up on your door and explain to your kids that if the door handle so much as twitches or if the door is touched there may be some very pleasurable things taken away from them.
I also took some time to pray. I am a member of a church prayer group in which we pray for certain people every day. It feels so great to pray for others. After, I say the prayer group intentions I read from an inspirational/prayer or devotional book. I love to do this because when it’s time for me to pray sometimes my mind goes blank, which is great for meditation but not so great for praying.
Yes, working out most definitely counts as doing something for yourself. I haven’t worked out in over a year. I told myself that working out at the local gym for one hr 2-3 times a week is really adding to my stress since I also work part time. I thought once I finally go back to work full time or close to it, I will never be able to wake up at 6am to work out. I decided that getting sleep was better for my health and evening workouts would never work because that’s family time. Also, if you have older children you realize that once they get home from school the rest of the evening is complete chaos. Get homework done, eat, go to soccer etc.
The decision to stop working out was the worst thing I could have ever done. The entire year I had something new wrong with me every week. I was depressed, had no energy and really felt bad about the way that I looked. I decided this year I would workout but not become a slave to it. I would do my best to workout whenever I could with the minimum being three times a week. I decided anything would count for working out and any amount of time would be sufficient.
Here are some examples:
Taking boxes to basement: add in running back up the stairs and doing a few extra runs just for exercise
T-25: Beach body DVD that I purchased through a Facebook garage sale for $40- what a steal!! The workouts are only 25 minutes!!! SCORE!!
Riding bikes with kids
Yoga in the morning
Walking kids to school and jogging home (it’s only a block- but hey better then nothing!)
Cleaning the house: vacuuming, bringing laundry baskets upstairs etc.
You Tube workout videos: just do 20 min of the video if that’s all you have time for
Roller skating/Ice skating
So today I did T-25, like I have actually been doing 5 times a week for three weeks now! It’s nothing new that I do for myself but today it made me really happy! I’m getting better at getting it done without stopping in the middle and I’m really finding that I have more energy!
— Which I’m definitely going to need … because.. remember that audition? Well, I got the part of Casca in Shakespeare’s: Caesar!!! This is going to be the most challenging thing I’ve ever done in my life but I’m up for it, and I hope I rock the house!!
So for my “happy time” today, I really wanted to try and meditate-which did not happen. I couldn’t find the right time with all the cleaning and errands I had to run. Don’t get me wrong, I had an amazing hour and a half at Walmart but still not much “me” time. My usual hot spot is Target but I had some things I needed to buy for my little one’s birthday party that only Walmart carried. My daughter is in love with Rey from Star Wars and has to have a Star Wars themed birthday party.
I was so surprised that I could have just as much fun shopping at Walmart as I could at Target. My last experience at Walmart was anything but relaxing. It involved lots of carts crashing into me, people arguing with workers, and very long lines. Today was not like that all! Lucky for me.
The things I found for my daughter at Walmart were absolutely adorable. I get such a rush from buying stylish things at such a low price! Love finding that diamond in the rough! I will never understand people who buy the boots, or purses with the name brand on them when there are so many cute and adorable things out there that look so fabulous at more than half the cost! It just seems like those people are so brainwashed. My daughter is sleeping now but tomorrow I will add pics of her in these outfits because the Flat Stanley version of these just doesn’t do them justice!
Anyways, back to my Walmart excursion! Even though I enjoyed myself, I am not counting that as my “happy time”. After all, I was mainly shopping for my children and the house. If you’re shopping trip includes items for other people and/or your home then that does NOT count as your individual quality time to re-charge.
Since I couldn’t quite get into the frame of mind needed for meditation, I thought that having a movie night would do the trick. I would put the kids to bed a little early.. Oh, who am I kidding? I would put them to bed at their actual bed time 8:00 instead of the usual time I end up getting them in bed which is closer to 9:00. Anyways, I ended up reading a book to them and didn’t get out of their rooms until 8:30. We had to finish Treasure Island and we are now beginning the original Mary Poppins. I love reading books out loud to my kids because I treat it like an actual performance. It’s the one parenting thing that I’m really good at and my kids are always asking me to do it. I love to surprise them by raising my voice and it doesn’t matter what time it is- if the book requires shouting- then it’s shouting they get!!!! So by 8:30 I was finally out of their room or maybe a little after but still that is amazing for me. I felt like I had an entire evening left to myself. What would I do with all this freedom?
I decided I would watch Hot Tub Time Machine 2. (Don’t ask!) I did not want to think about anything and just wanted to watch something very silly, funny, and wrong. The first version of this movie was pretty dumb, I know, but still funny to me. I liked all the 80’s jokes. Well, #2 was soo horrible that after 5 min. I had to turn it off! Instead, I watched a taped episode of Saturday Night Live. Movie night turned into TV time but it still works!
What did you do with your free me time? I hope you were able to let the wind carry you away!