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Sunday, October 30, 2016

Alone again....naturally

During this time of such huge change I've felt very alone.  Which is so bizarre because in the last week while Florida was being hit with such extreme weather my phone was blowing up with people checking up on me.  I think the alone feeling comes from me dealing with every emotional situation and daily activities on my own for so long.  And lets face it, at the end of the day I'm the one who has to lay my head on the pillow, alone, and the things that I think and feel are in my head and heart and only I truly understand those things.

Last night I couldn't sleep, I turned on my light at 2:00 am and almost instantly there was a knock on my door.  My oldest wanted to make sure I was ok.  He was insistent when I told him I didn't want to talk about it.  Why can't I just BE?  I finally had to get nasty and tell him to leave.  Having an adult child living in the house is difficult.  He seems to forget that we are NOT equals.  Yes, I respect him as an adult and allow him to make his own decisions (even though they aren't decisions I would make) and I don't interfere for the most part in his life.  He comes and goes as he pleases and I'm here if he needs me.  I've mentioned before that he and I have had a rocky road the past 4 years and truth be told I am not sure if I will ever get over that completely.  I forgive, but I can't forget.  And once I put a guard up around my heart it's insanely difficult to take down.  He told me once that I share too much with my children....so now?  I share very little with him.  Practically nothing actually.  It's none of his business, what I do with my life.  Unlike my younger son, my oldest is headstrong and refuses to see anyone else's opinion easily.  So why would I open up to that? It's sad to me because we were so close for so many years and now?  I have no desire to share any part of my life with him.  I divorced his father I certainly don't need to have my son telling me what to do.  Those days are over.  It's a constant balancing act between my children.  My son's are adults now and although I have never and WILL never play favorites with them, I also feel that as adults I WILL make my relationship with them based upon the way they treat me and relate to me.  I know they think there are favorites and that's on them, quite honestly.  As a mother, I will be there for them whenever they need me.  As a person?  I will base my relationship with them on the relationship they have with me.  I am an open book with my younger son.  He is an open book with me.  We think the same, we react the same.  I trust him not to break our trust.  I'm trying to build my relationship with my daughter as she is entering those difficult teen years.  It's a whole different ball game with her.  For one, the boys aren't part of the equation most of the time so there isn't that conflict.  Secondly, she's a girl.  I can relate to her in different ways than I did with her brothers.  I'm trying to help her with the things I struggled with growing up to hopefully help her to avoid that.  She's an incredible young lady and I just hope I can do right by her.  She's so different than I was and am.  She keeps everything close to her chest, she doesn't share her emotions freely.  I'm an open book, always have been, sometimes to a fault.  She's so graceful and almost elegant at times, while my mother used to call me a "bull in a china shop".  I worry sometimes that she and I won't be as close as I want us to be. She's said recently that she feels she can never measure up to my youngest son.  I just wish she'd understand that she doesn't have to.  My relationship with each of them is unique and special in it's own way!

In my life actions speak louder than words.  I have difficulty trusting people's words when their actions just don't match up.  I've been burned my entire life by being sucked in by empty promises and people telling me what I wanted to hear.  I'm trying to be more open and not be so suspicious of people's motives, but it's difficult.  I wish I could open up to my son again the way I used to but I don't trust him not to hurt me again.  He has used the phrase "I'm paying for the sins of my father" but what he doesn't realize is that his actions have made me cautious, it has nothing to do with how alike or different he is from his father.  I base my actions on individuals not as groups.  I don't do blanket assessments, like "men are pigs" "women are bitches", I am a case by case basis kind of person.

I had saved this entry as a draft.  I guess it was a bit too intense for me to finish at the time.  Today, as I reread it my oldest and I have come to a new crossroads.  He's told me so many times in the past two weeks that he's grateful for me, and for how I've always been there for him.  He's out in the world more and different from his college experience he's meeting almost 30 somethings that haven't been blessed with family like he has.  He's old enough to realize that now.  We are slowly rebuilding what will be our relationship going forward.  But we are definitely on the right track.

My younger son was home for 2 weeks recently from college due to the Hurricane.  I realized yet again how much I rely on his friendship.  He brought me back to a happy place just by being home.  He has made some serious life decisions in the past month and he shocks me with his maturity and focus on the future.  He has changed his entire plan for his future and he seems more settled than he has been in a long time.

My daughter did my make up and organized my make up for me today.  We're spending the day doing "girl things" and I think we're going to be okay.

So in the blink of an eye it can all change.....it's just a day in the life.

Saturday, October 29, 2016

All I needed was the love you gave...And all I ever knew... Only you

I've been spending a lot of time at Disney World lately....you know, fairy tales....happily ever after....princes....you know the score.  I used to watch it all and think yea...nice story.  How about the real world.  Well......I don't think that anymore.  Because my life.....it's better than the movies.  It's better than the fairy tale....it's the Notebook on steroids.  I've kept it in for long enough it's time to let it out.  Yes, I've mentioned snippets here and there but at the risk of making someone else feel bad I've kept a lot of it to myself....I don't want to be the reason someone else looks at their relationship as less than.  I've been on the other side most of my life and it sucks.  But then my love made me look at it in a different way (he always does!  he's brilliant, I need to preface this with that tidbit)  I told him the other day that I felt like I was becoming a relationship snob.  I am having trouble watching people struggle when we feel a relationship should be as easy as breathing, and if it's not then it should be.  He said, "we're not snobs, we just want everyone to be as happy as we are.  I think that makes us humanitarians".  See what I mean?  He's brilliant.

I'm writing this not to brag or make anyone feel badly.  I'm writing this so that you never stop believing it's possible!  I'm a big believer in positive thinking, so is he.  That's a huge bonus in the easy as breathing department.  No resistance from either party.  No naysayer, no negative Nelly.  Another big plus was that we were friends first.  There was no pressure to impress each other or play games or manipulate.  We were just loving the fact that we found another person who was like minded and we enjoyed talking to.  A lot.  We talked for hours and hours....we still do.  Communication with us is like breathing.  I am the one who still has work to do....I'm unlearning behaviors from the past and he is patiently helping me do it.  We have had our share of "moments" but we are always stronger and closer after them.  That's a huge part of it.  Disagreements and issues should bring you closer and to a better understanding of your partner afterwards.  It's not about who's right or wrong it's about working out the issue in the best interest of the partnership.  I could go on and on about that but let's be honest.....most people that are in unhappy or difficult relationships won't see themselves in any of this and most likely think I'm full of shit.  So be it.

Here's my wish for every person alive.....that they have this feeling.....every minute of the day for the rest of their lives.  This overwhelming love bursting out of them that brings such joy that sometimes (a lot) tears run down their face from pure joy and gratitude for this person who inspires this love.  The feeling that they are with you even when they're not.  That they are right beside you with every step you take and you know they love you back with the same intensity and passion.  You have this partner that you truly (I swear on my kids!) love more every single minute that goes by.  And just when you think it's not possible to love another human being any more than you love them....it happens!  You do, you love them more!  How amazing is that?  And better yet, you know they feel the same.  That everyone around you sees the difference this person has brought into your life.  You're brighter, different in an intangible way.  You're peaceful, happy....it's indescribable.  Even when stress and illness and exhaustion and sadness touch your life deep inside you are joyful and blissful because of this person and the partnership you have.  You have a gift you get to open every single day and it's like nothing you've ever experienced.  I want that for everyone! And I'm living proof that it's possible.

I was struggling a few weeks ago about my purpose...my reason for being alive.  With the help of my cousin I realized that my purpose in this world is to be the best partner I can be for him....to support him and to love him and to always be his safe haven.  To make our home the happiest place for everyone who lives here.  To some people that might not seem like enough...but to me?  It's the most important job in the world and I will make sure that I follow through with it every day of my life.  I'm blessed far more than I deserve with this day in the life.....

Sunday, October 23, 2016

If I could save time in a bottle...the first thing that I'd like to do


I spent 4 of the last 7 days in Disney World.  So many observations during that time, for sure, but I think the biggest one was how much time people spend capturing memories instead of living the moment.  Disney actually banned selfie sticks so that people would be present instead of focusing on "capturing the moment".  It didn't stop people though.  Walking down Main Street videoing every thing in front of them.  What were they NOT paying attention to?  Their family and loved ones that they came to the Magic Kingdom with!  As a resident of Florida and someone who can go there pretty much every day it afforded me the luxury of observing this practice without being part of it.  It allowed me to see how I myself have progressed where this is concerned.  My first visit to Walt's world was when I was 7 years old, so I had no control of picture taking, I do remember my parents taking a lot of photos of the scenery. The next trip was when I was 20 and then 22 and I admit I took a lot of scenery pictures.  Those have since been thrown out.  My next visit was when my kids were little. I did take a lot more photographs of them, but I didn't take any of the scenery...I was already realizing what was important when capturing memories.  Now, besides an occasional picture of my kids during a downtime moment my phone/camera stayed in my backpack.  I wanted to enjoy the time with my kids instead of capturing it.

I know it sounds like I'm judging, and I'm not!  My sister is the family photographer and any time anyone needs a picture for something they ask Aunt Debbie.  Living in Arizona for 12 years I often wished she was there to photograph my kids parties or events because that's her thing and she's damn good at it. And she seems to be able to be present AND take pictures.  I don't think that's a skill a lot of people have.

What the picture taking at Disney led me to realize was that people aren't just preoccupied taking pictures they are busy posting them for the world to see.  Look, look at me, look at what a GREAT time I'm having......WHY?  Why do people care if others see the fun, why aren't they more absorbed IN the fun instead of posting it?  I do post pictures of my family enjoying life....but I post it AFTER the fact 98% of the time.  I think that's the part that gets me.  Looking around so many people were on their phone, checking social media....why?  You are with people I'm assuming you love, because you've chosen to spend this time with them, so why are you checking out what everyone else is doing?  This social media addiction is causing people to be so discontented with their own lives it's become an epidemic.  I know, I got caught up in it many times.  Summer's that were so hot in Arizona that we were inside most of the time and everyone else was having bbqs and beach outings, I felt dismayed with my life.  Everything I post on social media is authentic and positive.  If it's a stressful or not fun experience I don't post about it.  I've had people tell me so many times (after I commented about something they posted) that they were miserable and it wasn't any fun at all, yet to the rest of the world it looks like they are having the time of their life.  WHY?  Why do you CARE what everyone thinks first of all and secondly, why try to fake it?  Anyway, I digress, this is not what this post started for.

Being present.  Yes, that's the ticket.  As my kids and I waited on line after line we made memories.  We relived memories, we laughed and just connected.  My son said to me a few times, Jeez ma everyone looks so miserable.  I tried to explain it away and say "well, they're trying to cram it all into a short period of time and we have all the time in the world, so it's different", but it made me think.  I think most people are searching for the next shiny toy, the next feel good moment, the next high.  I've come to realize that MOST moments are those moments if you look at it from a different perspective.  We were in Target the other night on the way home from Disney to pick up a few things and we literally were laughing so hard we cried.  I stopped in the middle of an aisle, doubled over in laughter and my kids were too.  We had just as much fun at Target as we had in Disney World. Why?  Because we were together and we have fun everywhere.  That's not to say we are never upset or less than happy, of course we are, we're human!  But, we try to look at the good in everything, even waiting on a long, sweaty line at Disney World.

My kids tease me a lot about how in love I am with my Prince Charming.  They imitate my facial expression when I talk about him or talk to him and my sister simply says "eye roll" when I gush about him.  They are all happy for me and they know how long I've waited for this happiness that surrounds me now.  On one of our very first dates we were sitting having coffee and there was a family of 3 sitting at the next table and they were each engaged in their own electronic device.  I looked at him and I said "Promise me we will never be like that!"  He immediately said "Absolutely not! No way will that happen."  And it won't....because we've made a conscious choice to make sure that it doesn't.  And it IS a choice.  Everyone has the option of focusing on what they choose to focus on, whether it be social media, television, a book, music or the people they're with.  No one else can make that choice for them.

Sometimes I just feel that everyone is looking for something to fill a void in their life, that empty spot that keeps them searching for more.  Sometimes it's because they are looking for something they think someone else has or sometimes they are just in the wrong relationships and they need to move out of their comfort zone to find what they seek.  Other times they need to look in the mirror to change something to fill that empty spot.  But a lot of times I think it's like Dorothy said in the Wizard of Oz....."Everything you were looking for was right there with you all along."  You just have to put your phone down and SEE it.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

The moment I wake up....I say a little prayer for you

Answered prayers.....we've all had them right?  When I opened my spiritual page Chat with Your Angels in 2013 probably one of the most non-psychic questions I was asked was "Why doesn't God answer my prayers".....well, I would say He does answer your prayers, but sometimes the answer is no or not right now.  I always felt like God answered my prayers positively so I did struggle with having to tell people that.  Whenever I truly put my mind to praying for something the answer almost always came swiftly.  Was I blessed?  Did God like me better?  I used to struggle with that a lot.  When the darkest times of my life would loom I always knew that God had me.  I didn't worry I just trusted.  I think that was a huge difference.  Lately, being where I am on my spiritual journey I get SO irritated and annoyed and let's be honest, PISSED OFF when people come to me with worry.  Not concern, mind you or occasional nervousness or doubt-I'm talking anxiety and worry.  Especially if these are people that are devout religious people claiming to honor and love God.  Wellllllll then why do you worry?  That's like telling God you don't believe He's got you.  Right?  Think about it!  During my son's entire bout with cancer I only let myself think negatively once----and it wasn't that I didn't trust God, it was that I thought...what if God's plan and my plan didn't necessarily jive in this situation?  But I quickly was reassured that we were on the same page.  When my mother became sick in 2014 I knew it was her time.  I prepared everyone in my family as best as I could that this "was not going to end well".  My prayers were that God's will be done and that my mother was not to suffer.  There's the key.....its the way you pray.  Let me explain further using the most poignant example I have.....receiving my prince charming.

I was in Church yesterday and the Deacon was discussing how we need to pray without ceasing, not to become weary in our prayer.  He discussed the author of "Footprints in the Sand" Mary Stevenson.  I love the poem.  I struggle with the constant praying about the same thing, because I feel like God knows my heart and He heard me the first time I prayed and continuously praying for the same thing is similar to worry.  Not trusting that He will do what is needed.  The Deacon was discussing how prayer doesn't have to be spoken, God hears the prayers you utter in your heart.  Tears began to flow down my face.  I was so moved and so emotional I almost got up to leave.  I felt this peace and this knowing and my angels surrounding me at that very moment.  That was the answer.

I'm a very how and why oriented person.  My love often says to me "does it matter why?"  (Usually when he doesn't have the answer and the answer is "it JUST is").  I finally realized how God brought me the other half of my soul, the perfect match for me.  I am convinced that my mother was up in heaven in His ear petitioning for me and she finally got through to me in a way that she couldn't in the physical world.  She got me to relinquish my control so God could go to work.  I remember the day I finally gave it to God and said "Your will NOT mine be done.  I am open to whatever you lead me to do"  and I finally, after 50 years, MEANT it!  I felt this peace come over me and I could almost physically feel the swift current start moving, as if the dam had been broken.

Over the years I was never satisfied in romantic relationships.  There was always something missing, I was often disappointed and sad and there was an emptiness that could never quite be filled.  I was accused of watching too many romance movies or reading too many Danielle Steele novels, too much Young and the Restless...my expectations were too high I was told over and over.  I never really pinpointed what it was I wanted or needed I just knew I wasn't getting it.  I prayed for things to get better.  I prayed for my partner to change.  I prayed for patience.  I never asked for what it was I needed, probably because I didn't know what it was.  My heart knew, but it never told my head the specifics.  I never saw any couples that had what I was looking for (other than my parents) and that further solidified the fact that my expectations were too high in my mind.  I wanted the Fairy Tale.  The man who looked at me like I hung the moon and the man that I felt the same way about. I knew I wanted someone that made me feel whole and at peace and cherished.  Someone that would always be there for me no matter what and would understand my craziness and love me in spite of it.

When I became a mom my focus turned to my children and that fulfilled something in me that pushed the loneliness and sadness away for the most part.  It was still there, lingering under the surface.  When I decided that I needed to end my marriage formally it was because I realized that someday soon the kids would be gone and I wanted that partner I dreamed of my whole life to be by my side, the one I was told didn't exist.  The springtime day in 2015 that I released that control to God was the day that every prayer my heart never said out loud was able to come true.  God worked in ways that no one would ever believe to bring me the one true love of my life.  My very own Prince Charming. (honestly, Prince Charming could learn some things from my love.  He NEVER would have to walk around with a shoe, he'd recognize me if he was blindfolded, just sayin').

From the first moment he changed my life.  We were just friends at first.  We talked about everything and anything all day every day.  He became my go to guy.  I knew that I could tell him anything and he would understand and always know the right thing to say.  I've NEVER had that before with anyone in my life.  He seemed too good to be true, but we were just friends so what purpose would he have to hide anything?  Days turned into weeks and into a month and we decided to finally express the feelings that were building over that month.  He made a promise to me on that day and he has kept it every single day since.  I have often said that he is the answer to every prayer I've ever had spoken and unspoken and that is why those words in church yesterday hit me so hard.  He is my gift from God.  I am by far the luckiest woman in the world and I will devote my life to making sure that he knows it.  I will continue to thank God every day for this miracle and I will pray for the same relationship for each of our children, all 5 of them.
So, the next time you think that your prayers aren't being answered consider this.....are you praying for something that isn't in your best interest?  Perhaps give it all to God and let Him decide....He knows what's best!  I'm living proof....it's just a day in the life. <3 p="">

Thursday, October 6, 2016

The answer my friend is blowing in the wind.....

Well once again I'm going to be all over the place.  I've written this in my head about 50 times.  Every time it goes in a different direction.  So, here goes.

Hurricane Matthew is brewing.  Everyone and their mother is freaking out.  I am calm.  I am me.  I am looking at the good stuff, the fact that my daughter has no school.  I'm stuck in the house with my kids and nothing pressing is calling my name.  Some may call me delusional, I consider myself a woman of great faith.  Last week I took my daughter to church.  I haven't been in a long time and it was a magical experience.  The priest spoke about having faith "the size of a mustard seed" and the magical things that result from that.  My faith is so much bigger than that.  Does that mean I don't believe anything bad will ever happen to me?  Of course not, I'm not stupid enough to believe that, and hellooooooo my son had cancer at the age of 10!  My mother died of the same disease....I've had my share of trials in life.  However, I DO believe that nothing will ever happen to me that God and I together cannot handle.

 I have removed myself so much from any negativity in my life that this whole storm nightmare is making me physically sick.  I have a knot in my stomach and I'm jittery and anxious.  Not because of fear but because everyone I know is FREAKING out!  All across the country I have people contacting me, checking on me. It is very very sweet that everyone is thinking about me.  The problem lies in the alarmist mentality that everyone is spreading.  It is upsetting my spiritual balance.  I'm on the phone, answering texts and emails and messages and the more power I'm giving to these thoughts the more it's affecting me.  I need to remove myself from it all.  I went into meditation for an hour today to remove all the negativity.
I don't miss Arizona, however I DO miss the sunshine EVERY day and the fact that all this weather trauma was a distant memory for 12 years.  12 blissful years.  I've thought a lot lately about why the hell I moved to Florida.  But then my daughter gets in the car after school and says "I'm so happy we moved here and I LOVE the rain!"  My oldest son is enjoying his life more than he has in the longest time.  My middle son told me today "I DO love this weather mom".  Ok, maybe I'm the weirdo.  I miss never having to have a conversation with ANYONE about anything but how damn hot it was in AZ.  I miss my friends.  I miss knowing where EVERYTHING is and where to find information.  I miss feeling settled and a part of something.  Then all this hurricane hullabaloo and I'm ready to pack my ass up and run!

Then I think about all the good things about living here.  Someday I'll be able to go to the beach whenever I want (as soon as it stops RAINING!).  I'm closer to my family and I've seen more of them since I've been here than I have in 12 years in AZ.  I'm close to my daddy (but that also means shopping at Publix and being reduced to tears every time because I think of shopping with my mommy for the last 30 years)....I like not feeling like a freak of nature because I'm a New Yorker.  People are friendlier here for sure!  The restaurants are incredible.  We are now season pass holders for the Happiest Place on Earth and that means I can take my daughter there all the time.....lets discuss that shall we?

Last night I took her there for the first time in her life.  We had so much fun even though it rained (shocker) and it was packed and sooooo hot and humid.  It was so nice to know that we didn't have to try to cram it all into one day or two days, we could just relax and enjoy the day.  I thought, hmmm this is worth living here alone!  My son is going to attend college here next year for a fraction of what it cost him in NC as a Florida resident.  He always wanted to go to college in Florida and now he will be living his dream and I will have him only 90 minutes away.  Not gonna lie, I'm doing a little dance with that decision.

Ok, so was moving here a mistake?  No.  I know it wasn't.  I was guided to move here the same way I was led to move to Arizona without ever stepping foot in the state.  I know this is part of God's plan.  And I refuse to worry about any of it.  I know that everything happens the way it's supposed to.  If what I want in life doesn't come to me than I know that God has something bigger and better in store for me.  I realized that I was waiting for the next step to happen in my life.  Spending so much of my time preparing for the next phase, the next good thing, that I was missing what was happening in the current moment.  I refuse to do that anymore.  I've started to live my life again.  I feel like I've spent 2016 preparing for the move, preparing for my son going to college, preparing for other events that have yet to happen and may not happen for a long time.  I need to be okay with being here, in this moment, by myself and know that if that's the way the future is supposed to be than I'll be okay.  God has me and I am blessed far more than I deserve.
So, I'll leave you with this......when you worry it's like telling God that you don't have faith in His timing....in His love for us and in His design for our lives.  Do terrible things happen, such as the devastation brought on by Hurricane Matthew....yes of course it does!  God never promised our lives would be perfect, he just promised we wouldn't have to face it alone.  Trust in Him and please stop feeding into the frenzy and panic that is commonplace in this day and age. (and that INCLUDES the presidential election---oy vey)  Turn you eyes and your heart and your prayers upward and God will provide!