2019, You Are Going Down

What a year! What a past 6 years! Better yet, what a past 45 years! Years that have been filled with many joys but far greater lows, sadness and burdens. I have had almost two weeks off work and I have used this time to really reflect on my life.

Is this life that I continue to live day in and day out the life I want to take into 2020? Do I want to take this life with me until I take my last breathe? Do I want to keep waking up in the same groundhog’s day cycle and going to sleep fighting tears for the things I wish I would have done or things that I wish would have happened?

Then I question, do I deserve that life I want? From the outside, my life looks perfect. I have two wonderful kids that adore me as much as I adore them, a precious newborn granddaughter, a husband that works hard and come home every night, a job that I love and want to make my lifelong career and amazing family and friends. But why am I so empty? Why am I so lonely? Why am I so sad when not with my children? Why do I feel like I need something more? Why do I go to bed each night feeling as if my day was a waste?

I know most of the answers are as simple as I have conformed to the environment around me. When I am at work, I feel like I can do anything. I can multitask and handle anything. I can get something done at the last minute with time to spare. I am sharp. I am on it. When I am with my kids, I am all about them. I am so focused on what they are saying, doing and hanging onto their every word or breathe. I fuss over them. I pamper them. I jump when they even whisper my name. I am supermom.

But when work and children are not around, I am sullen and blank faced. Why is that? I’ll tell you why, I have become so accustomed to doing nothing unless I make the plans, arrangements and details that if no one has made plans, I just sit. When did this happen? I have always been the one with the hair done, clothes just right, nails done and from head to toe just working it. When did I stop exercising and hiking? No I sit staring at a tv, book or phone letting the weight take over. When did I stop visiting my friends? When did I start saying “one day I will” instead of “today I will”? When did I become this person I do not know?

I can’t be this person anymore. I can’t wake up another day and look in the mirror and see this stranger. I have to get my happy back. I need to get my groove back. I need to find the joy I had that radiated out of me. It is scary for me. I know there are some people that I am going to have to leave in 2019. I know there are people that will have to evolve with me or be let go. I deserve to be happy, loved and adored. Not by just people, but by myself.

Look out 2020, Belinda is taking you and making you her B*#¥$!!!!! I am going to do what makes me happy! I am going to be the old me! I am not waiting on others to decide they want to join me. I will not be stuck in a cell phone and ignore this wonderful world! I will live. I will make memories. I will work my ass off at work. I will spoil my kids even more. I am going to be me. The best me I can be. Ready, Set…… GOOOOOOO!!!!!

What if????

At what point is it okay to do what is best for yourself? When do stop believing in the words and empty promises of others? When do you start chasing the dreams you have rather than the ones that are in reality a black hole of lies? Do you hang onto that moment of hope or let it go because you know it is like the wind? When is it okay to stop putting your feelings away on the shelf? Is it possible to not break because you may upset another because of your needs? When do you walk away from what you thought was your soulmate but realize when it comes down to it, you are just a wife, not a mate?

They say the definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over while getting the same result. Is it insanity to stay in a life that is just the same day after day? Where you just feel dread the second you pull in the driveway? Where it is the same mess, the same arguments, the same hurtful words? The same place where there is a lack of the love that you need. The love you long for. A place where you know that the few moments of love are only used as a way of pacifying you for the greater need of the other. A place that was once your safe haven but is now your insanity.

And what if you run? What if you just left it all behind to find your peace, your place, your dreams, a love unrelenting? Is there such a place where you feel love like you never have? A place where you matter as a constant, not as a convenience? A place where you know without any doubt that you are wanted and desired? A place where there is a soul mate to be your person? A place where

The sad reality of it is, even if you do run, find that life, live those dreams, you will still be utterly and eternally unhappy because it is not your life. When you have built a life for so many years on hopes, dreams and promises, it becomes your being. To shed that life would be like a death of self. How can you live if pieces of you die? So you will simply stay, in your misery and broken dreams, because you cannot bear to step a foot on an unknown path. Unhappy here, equally unhappy there. What to do? Where to go? Who even cares?

Morning Maggie!

No big emotionally heart wrenching words today just thought I would share some of my therapy with you.

This is Maggie and she was delivered to me two years ago. She needed a home and I needed rescuing. I was told that one option to try to get over the PTSD of my son passing was a comfort animal. Something to make get up and move. Something to give me unconditional love when I was in the deepest throws of grief. So I agreed and she came.

So the kids friends brought over a nameless little Great Dane/ German Shepherd mix little girl. We bonded instantly. She was taken away from the only mom she had ever known and I had my precious taken from me. We needed each other.

Maggie Mae as we called her kept me on my toes. She would get into anything and everything and then some. She was growing faster than we thought and soon became known as Maggie Moose. She took over the house and claimed it as hers. Everyone’s favorite comfy chair soon became the only chair she could stretch out comfortably in. She became our child and the kids sister. Maggie was Krista’s shadow and my best friend.

Our sweet pup has grown into her huge feet and into our hearts. She is more human than dog. When our grandson arrived she was a little wary over this tiny human the size of her head. Poor Maggie became frantic when he had his first real crying spell and was clueless as to what to do. She simply gave him her bone and waited to see if he would calm down. Now, this tiny human chases and terrorizes her in the walker. At night though, she has to be snuggling her little peanut when he sleeps with me and wakes me at his slightest move.

This goofy, clumsy, spoiled pup has now learned to read my moods and love me a little more when I need it. This morning I woke for the 6th day in a row with tears in my eyes from some emotion I can’t name. Some trigger that is nameless to me in my sleep. Maggie sensed this I guess and laid right on top of me. She just laid there looking at me with those eyes and every once in a while licking a tear away. The love of a best friend spoiled only when I told her she would meet her new groomer today and get a bath. (She hates the word bath)

I was always a skeptic on comfort animals but now the biggest supporter. She is my rescuer, my comfort, my love, my child. God knew I needed her and sent her at the right time! My Maggie Mae Moose Schell, the biggest, slobberingest friend of all time!

I’m back and reclaiming my JOY

It has been quite a while since I have wrote. There has been a lot going on. I had surgery. Church has kept us going. Our kids and everyone else has kept our calendar full. My daughter announced that she is going to have a baby so I am going to be a Granny. My niece has moved in. School is out and summer fun is underway. So so much is keeping us busy that I would like to say that is why I haven’t put pen to paper. But sadly it is not.

I have let something terrible happen in my life. I have let someone take my joy away. Actually more than one person. But to start, I let the words of someone who is very bitter with their own life get to me. Get into my head and into my heart. I let this person strip me down to the core with her words and leave me questioning everything in my life. What makes this so sad? This person knew the right words to say and how to use them. Even sadder, none of the words she said were true or even relevant. I had never in my life been spoken to with such hate and anger as I was then. Even though I knew everything she was saying was just pure hate, I let it sink in until it took my joy. I let this person who is so miserable in her own life, damage mine.

It caused a ripple effect too. It started with me feeling down from the words. Then it had me questioning the things said. This caused me to start letting other things get to me. Other people’s problem became like bricks on my shoulders. I let the words and actions that were so tiny aggravate or hurt me like they were the worst in the world. I even let someone at church almost rob me of my safe place at the altar. I would show up to places with an escape plan already in place and dread in my mind. I was only happy at home in my comfort zone.

What brought me out of it? I just dug in deeper and read more of my Bible. I did more praying and even more praying after that. Then one night last week, I had just had it. I realized that I wasn’t happy. I wasn’t joyful. I was sad. I was lonely. I was faking my way through so much of life that I quit even really living. So I reclaimed my joy. I took back my happy. I gave all the burdens that I was taking on from others back. I turned a deaf ear to negative and an eye to the positive. I for the first time in a long time got the urge to write again. I gave the hateful person that started this downward spiral to the Lord and her words to pray. I hope she finds happiness somewhere in her life and gets right with God. But for me, I am reclaiming all that is good, happy and joyful for me.

And now the writing begins……………….

Lil Sis Got Hitched! Part 1

My littlest sister, Jessi Rae, got married this past weekend. These past few weeks have been a whirlwind of her crazy wedding planning. It seemed as if everyday she was making yet another list that had the same things from the day before’s list. It almost got to where when I saw her walk in with a pen and paper, I wanted to run! But she is the baby so we made lists. And more lists, And more lists.

She wanted to do most of the wedding herself and not pay people to do things that she could do. Or things that I could do. Like baking and cooking. So the last few days before the big day, I was a candy and cookie making fool. But I was also a crying babbling fool. I just didn’t know how I was going to get through her getting married! Why did she have to be grown? Why were my kids grown? WHY WHY WHY!?

Jessi is 16 years younger than me. I know! How gross is it that my parents were still making babies when I was in high school? Anyway, that is something for my therapist to deal with. When this little baby was born, I didn’t think I could ever love anyone as much as her. Yes, I had two other sisters but this one was special. She was perfect. Being the oldest, I quickly took on the role as “other Mother” to her. Jessi was my practice baby and I loved her so much that I didn’t think I would ever want a kid of my own. in fact two years later, I was told I would never have children and it really didn’t bother me because I had her. Well, that idiot doctor was wrong because a few months later I was able to tell Jessi that Sissy had a baby in her belly.

Because Jessi was so little when Richie was born, they were more like brother and sister, Richie was her living baby doll and she adored him. When Luke came along, she had another baby doll to play with and the 3 of them were inseparable. Everywhere we went, we had Jessi right along with us.Everyone thought we had three kids. I don’t know who was more excited when we found out that the 3rd and last child was going to be a girl, Jessi or everyone else. Now she had a real live girl to put dresses on and tote around. And dress up and tote around did she do. Jessi was more like my daughter than my sister and we had her every chance we could.

These sweet little babies grew up into aggravating little turds. Aunt Jessi turned into the confidant and alibi they needed. While I am still scared to hear all the things they got into, I am grateful that they have had someone to lean on when they couldn’t with me. The sweet little kids that played in the mud grew up to be adults before I could blink.

Jessi had a baby girl and then a baby boy who are more like my grandchildren than my niece and nephew. I love all my nieces and nephews but these two are just so special to me. I literally sit and cry sometimes because I love them so much. We went through losing Richie and my heart broke for Jessi. She lost more than a nephew, she lost a brother, While I lost my first born son, my heart broke because I could not take the pain from my kids and Jessi. But through our ordeal, we had this very special man to lean on…. Kevin.

Kevin is the one that Jessi has chosen as her life mate. We always been very hard on anyone that Jessi has ever brought around and no one was ever good enough. I used to say that if a man was hand picked from heaven and sent here, I still wouldn’t like him totally. Well, I think Kevin was hand picked by Jesus and sent here. He has always been the nicest and sweetest to all of us but it wasn’t until my darkest that I really saw the heart of this man. The week after we lost Richie, I was always turning around to him being right there. At night when he would go home, I would find little notes and messages from him saying he loved us. Since the moment I lost my son, he has been there to lean on and hasn’t left yet. I knew that he had gotten close to the kids but was not aware of how close until then. He mourned as if he had been raised from the start with Richie. When he was lifting me, Jessi and the family up, he had tears of loss in his eyes.

Beyond how great he is in our times of needs, Kevin is just the most fabulous, Dad! He not only took in Lexie and loved her as his own but he is dedicated to her. Shae has not one need or want that he doesn’t fill. He steps in for Father/Daughter days with pride. He really and truly loves her without any thought to biological ties. She is his, end of story. And the way he is with Kane. From the second he knew Jessi was pregnant, he was in love with a child he never met. And now that he has met him, they are best friends. I have sat here trying to find the words to describe how amazing of a Dad he is. There are none that do it justice. He is just simply unconditionally devoted to loving that little boy.

The love story between Jessi and Kevin is like something from a romantic comedy. Me and my sisters just laugh at the two of them. One minute they can be arguing about the stupidest thing on Earth and then Jessi will look at us and say, “He is just so good looking I can’t even take it!” Or he will just look at us and say something corny like, “I love her so much I can’t imagine life without her.” We just look on bewildered and slightly jealous. They are so obsessed with each other that they had no choice but to get married and stay together forever. They have ruined each other for other people. If Jessi ever says she wants something, you can bet your last nickel that Kevin will have for her very soon. If Kevin wants something, Jessi will make sure that it is a priority. NEVER EVER LEAVE YOUR PHONE UNATTENDED AROUND THEM! If you do, there will be tons of pics where they just take one after the other of themselves. One day we all went on a family outing and Jessi had my camera to take pics. Out of almost 200 pictures, only 50 were of the trip, there rest were them cheesing it up.

I have spent so long talking about them in this I never got to the wedding! I will do that in the next one! Lil Sis got hitched and I am still a crying mess. They have  a true love stroy, an endless love for each other and a lifetime of dreams to fill.

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A happiness you cannot find alone

I am reading Have A Little Faith by Mitch Albom. There are just parts of this book that are so profoundly wise that I have to pause and reflect on them. I thought I would share an excerpt this morning that spoke to me.
– Still, the Reb knew that marriage was an endangered institution.  He’d officiated for couples, seen them split, then officiated when they married someone else.
“I think people expect too much from marriage today,” he said. “They expect perfection. Every moment should be bliss. That’s TV or movies. But that is not human experience.
“Like Sarah says, twenty good minutes here, forty good minutes there, it adds up to something beautiful.  The trick is, when things aren’t so great, you don’t junk the while thing. It’s okay to have an argument.  It’s okay that the other one nudges you a little, bothers you a little. It’s part of being close to someone.
“But the joy you get from that closeness-when you watch your children, when you wake up and smile at each other- that, as our tradition teaches us, is a blessing. People forget that.”
Why do we forget it?
“Because the word ‘commitment’ has lost its meaning. I’m old enough to remember when it used to be a positive.  A committed person was someone to be admired. He was loyal and steady. Now a commitment is something you avoid. You don’t want to tie yourself down.
“It’s the same with faith, by the way. We don’t want to get stuck having to go to services all the time, or having to follow all the rules. We don’t want to commit to God. We’ll take Him when we need Him, or when things are going good. But real commitment? That requires staying power-in faith and marriage.”
And if you don’t commit? I asked
“Your choice. But you miss what’s on the other side.”
What’s on the other side?
“Ah.” He smiled. “A happiness you cannot find alone.”

READ THIS BOOK! It will be a blessing.

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Unplugging Update

It has now been almost two weeks since I have started “unplugging” my life. How is it going? Well, to be honest, I am loving it! I haven’t got to do everything I wanted to do because we have been so busy with graduations and other things. But I have really enjoyed not having what I now refer to as a “bright screen” headache. I haven’t gotten nearly as many of the headaches I used to and I am thinking it had something to do with looking at lit up screens all day. Phone, Tablet, computer, TV. So that is a major plus.

I have also realized that I really do not miss FaceBook all that much. My sisters or Jeff will ask me if I had seen such and such on FB and I can gladly say, “No I haven’t!” The ones that are a part of my everyday life text or call me when something is going on so I have not missed the important stuff. Now I do still get on there here and there. But I have been very good at limiting myself. What was no more than 10 minutes a day has now became maybe 10 minutes every 3 days. Now don’t be mistaken, I still love the Instagram!

I haven’t got to read as many books as I have set my goal too. Nor have I written as much. I have written more letters than I normally get to and that is the best bonus so far! I have converted one of the extra bedrooms as a little getaway reading room/guest room. I have the bookshelf filled with books that I want to get read. My comfy rocker that I have had since Richie and Luke were little. There is a bed in there for when I want to curl up and read until I fall asleep. Yes, I could do this in my room but there is nothing but a tiny TV and DVD player in this room so no electronic distractions. And with it not being a regularly used room in the house, no one goes in there much. My bedroom is like the gathering place for everyone lately. (Which I do not mind)

I have noticed that while unplugging, I am more attentive to my children and husband. It makes me sad to realize how much time I took away from them. They deserved more of me than I was giving them. The down-side of this realization is that I have noticed how plugged in the are and how little time I get in return with them now. Catch 22. I am trying to get them to unplug more without them realizing it.  Another down-side is I am finding that I becoming a little OCD again about things around the house. What took years to tame is now coming back. But I have seen that I was slacking on the housework.

I have also noticed that electronics were part of my insomnia. Before I was lucky to get a good 2 hours of sleep. That was without sleeping medication. With meds, I would get maybe 4. Now, I can fall asleep just sitting still. I am thinking that all the lack of sleep is being caught up on. I went to bed last night and was asleep on my own by 10pm! Can you believe it???? I am sleeping again!

So now school is out. Graduations are about over. Only one more weekend is booked on the calendar until July. I will now get into a routine with the little kids that will be here for the summer. I will read, write and just be peacefully unplugged. Try it, You will feel better!