A Mind Like a Sponge I Tell You

Sometimes I forget just how ripe and absorbent the toddler brain is until my son who is now nearly 3 years old reminds me by wowing us with his superb memory and absorbed knowledge. Time and time again, Jacob will prove to me that sometimes when we think he is not really listening to us….he truly is.

A few weeks ago Jacob was watching me clean the bathroom and asked if he could turn the water on to wash his hands. I gave Jacob the green light and he tried and tried with all his might to reach the tap but alas the poor kid was too short to reach. After a few attempts to reach on tip toe he turned to me and said “Mommy I can’t reach the sink” and I quickly responded with a very adult response that went something like this: “Well Jacob is you can’t reach the sink, I think we have a predicament”. I can remember the exact moment that Jacob’s face turned from the frustration of not being able to reach the sink to the curious look as I used the word “predicament” so I wasn’t surprised when he responded to my statement with “what’s a predicament Mommy?” I didn’t know what else to say so I quickly spit out that “a predicament is when you have a problem and you don’t know what to do”…to which he simply stated: “oh ok”.

I have to admit that I wasn’t shocked by this type of questioning because we get it quite often from Jacob but what I didn’t realize at the time was that this very conversation would be used against me in the near future. Yesterday, it was well past the time that Jacob generally takes his nap so I said to him as I usually would that it was time to go upstairs, lay down in bed and take a little rest….and instead of the usual obedience what I got shocked me and made me laugh at the very same time. I watched as Jacob too a very thoughtful breath in, turned to me quietly and said “Mommy we have a predicament!” and when I pressed him with “Oh really? What is the predicament boo (as I often call him)” he responded “the predicament mommy is that I don’t want to have a nap right now”.

Uhh huh, that’s right…..that’s what I get for offering a truthful explanation! That little man never ceases to amaze me – and I tell you people, he is definitely smarter then his parents already!

But please, never fear…Mama Melissa never gets outwitted by that little man – well at least not this time. I quickly reminded him that if we were in a predicament then we needed to figure out how to solve it – and after a few moments of quick problem solving, he was snuggled up in his bed with his monkey and blanket, not even realizing that I had out smarted him yet again.

I’m so glad I don’t really swear because I could only imagine the mouth this child would have with his sponge like mind……and then I imagine…

We’d really be in quite the predicament.

A Toast to Tummy Time

Jacob was a lover of tummy time from a young age which I think had a lot to do with his time spent holed up in one of those N.I.C.U. incubators.  I remember when we’d visit him and I’d say to the nurses “why is he on his belly, aren’t babies supposed to sleep on their backs?” and they feed some story about how it was sage in there because of all the leads and monitors, blah blah blah….I shrugged it off, believed that they wouldn’t steer us wrong and when I took him home I cursed them…he would NOT sleep on his back, end of story.  As a result of being a tummy sleeper, we then became “breakers of parenting rules” and allowed him to sleep on his stomach, which in turn made him a champ at performing during tummy time – he never cried and hung out for an hour at a time on his tummy….simply chilling.

I guess I imagined that tummy time would go as simply or as wonderful with Violet as it did with Jacob but as it turned out, I was quite certainly mistaken.  The odd think about our little Diva is that she also enjoys sleeping on her stomach now and then but put that child down on a play mat on her belly and she will loudly and quite extravagently inform you of her displeasure. As most of us know, we humans respond to apprehensive/dangerous/maddening situations with either a fight or flight response and I suppose in a way Violet has chosen the flight part of that idea…..heh.  It’s kind of like her own way of telling us off and showing us who’s boss I suppose, but when we put her down for tummy time, Violet can easily just flip herself back over…as if she’s telling us:  “you lose, I win”; she’s just like her brother already, smarter then us.  It starts the same every time with her throwing a mini fit before she remembers her new found skill and free’s herself from the agony that is tummy time.

PRETTYGIRL2

The thing is, little Miss Diva doesn’t quite realize that her Mama is a stubborn old thing and time and time again I’m going to put her down on that darn belly and then when she least expects it she’s going to suddenly realize that she loves it….I’m sure of it. Just yesterday it seemed the Diva was coming to her sense when she allowed me to snap this picture….

DSC_0194

Please don’t tell her I posted the picture of her in all her focused cross eyed glory….heh…she might retaliate and it might involve poop, stanky running diaper filled to the brim poop – did I mention she’s starting to have that 40 year old balding man look?

The Circle of Life

“To everything there is a season, and
a time to every purpose under heaven:”

It’s after 10 pm and I’m sitting here breaking all the rules about bedtime that exist in our house because I’m having one of those days where I want to breathe in every ounce of energy that my children give out…..taking a long drink from their cups filled with new life. Jacob is eating Dora fruit snacks, drinking blueberry juice that is not watered down, and playing with his infamous Wonder Pets – all things that are not common activities at 10pm in our house. Violet is laying on the couch next to Mike, giggling, cooing and getting overly excited at the fact that she can bring her hands together over and over and over again – and I am inhaling every moment of this because today I became painfully aware that before we know it, our ticket is pulled, and its our moment to leave this earth….

“A time to be born, and
a time to die;
a time to plant, and
a time to pluck up
that which is planted;”

Someone I know quite well, but not well enough sadly, passed away last night after a short but courageous battle against a Cancer that had invaded his body. I am not a member of his “family” in the literal sense, but I have grown up with this family – he was the grandfather of my closest friend who I’ve known nearly 26 years. I often referred to them as my “weekend” family…he was to my friend her Opa (grandfather) and that is what I have always known him as….simply Opa; I wish I could have known him more, but over the years I have had only surface types of conversation with him but regardless our conversation was always kind and enjoyable. When someone close to you, loses someone close to them, it’s an incredibly strange process of grief because you are saddened about the loss of a good person from the world, but you are also saddened that your dear friend has to go through a painful process of mourning.

“A time to kill, and
a time to heal;
a time to break down, and
a time to build up;”

I read many blogs, but recently someone referred to our time here on earth as “just passing through” and I really hold strong to that belief…that we are just passing through this life to get to the next life, where we can exist with our families in heaven, and closer to God then we’ve ever been here on earth. I don’t often talk about faith or religion on my blog, I rarely mention that I do believe we have a Heavenly Father that loves us and wants us to return to Him some day…but I feel urged to today. I am thinking of Opa, a good strong Man, who is gone today but some day he will be reunited with his loved ones in a place that is so wonderful and decadent. I guess, what I’m thinking about this “just passing through” thing is that we’re here to do more then just “passing through” I guess….we have some work to do while were here, an impression to leave, and love to share….it’s why I’ve spent the day soaking in the joy of my children….because its such a remarkable idea that as one person leaves this life, another person is being born into it – perhaps it is also because children have a light that comes from them that gives us strength during difficult times – they are resilient, care free, loving, curious, and ecstatic…all the things we hope or wish we could be.

“A time to weep, and
a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and
a time to dance;”

Indeed we are not just passing through, we are doing our work, leaving our mark so that one day we can get to that “ultimate all inclusive vacation” with our loved ones and God.  We’re going to the traditional wake and funeral services this week and I’m choosing not to bring Jacob along with us, not because I don’t think her’s ready to understand (which I don’t think he’d really understand) but because I’d like to spend some time remembering with Opa’s loved ones, being a shoulder to cry on for a dear friend…..and it would be hard to do that when you’re spending your time trying to prevent your preschooler from stuffing straws up his nose (he’s never done that, trust me I’d know….but it could happen right?).

“A time to cast away stones, and
a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and
a time to refrain from embracing;”

I confess that I do not cope well at funerals, they are perhaps one of the most difficult things that I have endured in my lifetime.  When I am at funerals I suddenly start to lose control of my thoughts and anxiety creeps in to shake me up a bit…..within minutes of being there I am thinking of the people closest to me and how I would feel if all of a sudden I couldn’t be with them, talk to them, feel them near.  Somehow over the years I’ve become terrified with the idea of death and today I started wondering why it was so frightening to me and I think its because death is just so normal…..it happens every day, sometimes without notice or when we least expect it….and so we become terrified of it, knowing that in many ways it is one thing in life that we unable to control – it always takes me a few days to recover from a funeral.

“A time to get, and
a time to lose;
a time to keep, and
a time to cast away;”

Someone leaves the world and someone enters, the circle of life continues as it should and probably will for a long time coming….

“A time to rend, and
a time to sow;
a time to keep silence, and
a time to speak;”

And I hold my children a little closer, love them a little more profoundly….and I express my gratitude for what I have, right now, on this day, and in this very moment….

“A time to love, and
a time to hate;
a time of war; and
a time of peace.”


Because Turning 3 Months Old Wasn’t Special Enough….

On the day that she turned 3 Months old, Violet rolled over from her tummy to her back for the first time. I caught it by accident really…she had been asleep on her belly in her bassinet for an hour, maybe two, and from my chair I saw the familiar shaking motion that generally alerts me that she is stirring from her nap. Being the good Mama that I am, I murmured a moment about how unfair it was that she was waking up already, stuffed the last piece of my lunch into my mouth, chewed, swallowed and made my way quietly to the side of her sleeping place. I peered down over her at the exact moment that she started pulling her legs up into a tight tuck, her little bum pushed high into the air. and she started that determined rock from side to side that I remember so vividly from the brother that had come before her…the rock that is either going to result in a roll or a loud screaming frustrated baby; I clenched my teeth together and braced myself for the wail that would surely escape from her wee mouth at any moment.

It was only a few moments of real determined effort and then she was over and onto her back, peering up at me with her big gray-blue eyes and a look of shock on her face that was probably close to my own. I wiped the disbelief off my face, smiled at her, and delivered a proud exuberant “you did it Violet!”….she smirked back at me as if she was saying “Oh yes I did it and now it’s party time Mum”. I’m always so excited when my kids hit a new milestone, no matter how big or how small, because to me the first smile or roll is just as important as the first word or first step….so I scooped Violet up, grabbed the phone and called That Daddy Guy to tell him the news; he was as I suspected disappointed that he had missed it and then did his usual questioning…”isn’t that early?” I have no idea what the norm is, but it’s early compared to Jacob who lazed around like a lump on a log until he was 4.5 months old….only to start crawling at 6.5 months….so I spewed out some regurgitated nonsense from Baby Center, hung up the phone, and reminded Violet that this was not an excuse for her to start doing other exciting things, like sitting up, and crawling.

With Jacob, I eagerly and anxiously awaited every milestone because I was so excited…I couldn’t wait for him to sit, I was ecstatic for him to crawl, and desperate for him to take his first steps; now that I am on my second child, my opinions on all of the above are so different. I want Violet to be her own person, to do things in her own time, when she’s ready and not according to some checklist in “What to Expect: The First Year” (have I mentioned how much I hate that book?). I totally do not feel that kids should be measured and assessed based on these “lists” that are out there, which by the way are different from book to book, from website to website – I think kids just don’t deserve the pressure…

Besides, once Jacob started moving, really moving……I could no longer take a pee without having to strap him into some baby device or plunk him behind the walls of his playpen….because if I didn’t, he would surely eat the cat food, and he’d probably go back for seconds.

Yes, Violet can take her time all she wants….

Even though at this point the odds don’t seem to be in my favor, but then….they never are.

Terrible Twos or Three’s?

It never ceases to amaze me how full of surprises, enchanting, exciting, and DECEIVING being a mother can be. When you have a baby for the first time, everyone warns you about those pesky “terrible twos” and when your child hits two you brace yourself, armed with tactics and the tools you think you need to survive…hoping that you can make it to that third birthday with all of your hair still in tact and a toddler that’s still….breathing. I was more then prepared and as The Dictator’s second birthday approached and then passed by, I patiently waited for it all and eventually as month after month zipped by, I started to think that I got the broken child, the one who was just so compliant, peaceful, calm – I was the lucky one, the one that got to skip all the terribleness…YAY ME.

I had only just begun to celebrate, to rejoice that we “ours” wasn’t so terrible and suddenly like an earthquake that hits without warning The Dictator started moving towards the age of three. We’re only just over a month away from the next birthday, the one that was supposed to free us from the “oh so terrible and frightening twos” and suddenly The Dictator is full of ideas, wants, needs, and thoughts that quite simply don’t align with my own. Just moments before I sat down to write this very post I had asked Jacob if he would prefer an english muffin or regular toast for his breakfast, to which he replied that he most assuredly did NOT want the english muffin – because I know better, I asked him a second time, this time adding a very stressed ARE YOU SURE????? to the end of my question and he responded that he was sure. I made the toast and gave into his request to have peanut butter (for more on the peanut butter fascination read this) and I sliced the toast diagonally across before putting it onto his plate with a piece of fruit and then I heard it…..

“I DIDN’T WANT MY TOAST CUT INTO TRIANGLES, I WANTED IT CUT INTO RECTANGLES!!!”

From the kitchen I take a deep breath and head back to the table with a sort of smile on my face replying that “triangles are fun! look how fun those triangles are!” to which The Dictator assures me that triangles are not fun, triangles are bad and toast should be made into rectangles, always…no matter what. Now, I can assure you that while this conversation doesn’t seem too annoying at all, try to imagine it in the most screeching whiny voice that ever escaped your child’s lips, coupled with a look of real tragedy on his face – oh yes, I’d rather listen to fingernails scrapping down a chalk board. Somehow, I managed to convince him that triangle toast tastes just as delicious as rectangle toast and that he should give it a little try…he gives me a look that says “you’re so wrong, but I’ll humor you” as he takes a bite and remarks in a voice that is just as whiny as it is profound…..

“I DIDN’T WANT TOAST, I ONLY WANTED AN ENGLISH MUFFIN!!”

Oh yes, the terrible two’s were not so terrible….

I’m pretty sure it’s the Terrifying Three’s that we should all be warned about.

Dearest Violet: A Letter at 3 Months

To my sweet angel face,
My darling Violet Grace…..

You’re a whole big 3 months old today and gosh you’ve changed so much since that very first moment when we met back in January. I should probably start off this letter by apologizing for giving you a bad “rep” when you first came home from the hospital. I thought that you were going to be one of those babies that demanded a lot of attention, that constantly cried, and never slept at night but you’ve definitely proven otherwise in the past two months. You’ve definitely set out to prove to us that our opinions and ideas about you were completely wrong because in the last little while you have been such a beacon of sunshine.

EASTERWEEKEND10

I got to thinking the other day about how you were almost taken away from us before we even met you. I think it’s a good story for you to know one day, about how your dad and I knew that you were safe in my tummy all snuggled in for the journey of being born, despite what the ultrasound technicians had to say….they told us that you were not there, that you had not developed, that we were in fact losing you…..they told us you were most likely what they call a “blighted ovum” – they were wrong….so very wrong and just before they wanted me to take those darn pills that would make it all be over, Mommy and Daddy made sure we got a second opinion. I was so hopeful that we’d find you there, growing and thriving, and I was sad that I might never get to meet you, but Daddy was the source of my strength, telling me every day that we’d find you and that he just knew you were there waiting to meet us too. I wept with joy and relief the moment the ultrasound technicians (it took two to finally find you) turned the screen to show me your tiny little beating heart…I will never forget that moment, ever because not only did I know that I was going to meet you one day, but I also got a strong feeling in my heart that day, that you would be a girl – I felt instantly bonded to you, I knew that I would love you forever.

IMG_0798

There is so much to love about you already but what I am loving most these days is the way your face just shines when you smile so wide, as if your face was made to do it. You have this way of smiling with your whole face that makes me melt and I have no choice but to return the smile….we could go on and on in this exchange of smiles all day – You are definitely full of life, to that there is no doubt. Over the last little while I’ve also been enjoying our conversations and while its just sweet ohhs and ahhs that escape your lips, I’m inhaling them as if you’re telling me the most important tales of your life – I’m so enraptured by everything that you do, every sound you make, and every spit bubble that you release from those tiny lips of yours. Recently, you really started taking a keen interest in the things that surround you…you’ve reached for toys and have been able to get them into the grasp of your curled fingers, perhaps by accidents but it’s been important nonetheless. Every now and then I’ll lay you down for a moment beneath the mobile n your crib, and you react when you look up with your giant eyes as you do with most things, with a giant smile; I think the mobile with its dancing flowers of pink, white and green is perhaps your most favorite thing right now.

DSC_0249

Your brother has suddenly fallen head over heels in love with you, and any time that someone jokingly suggests taking you off to their house to live with them…he will actually cry real tears of worry that he might never see you again. I’m looking forward to watching as your relationship with Jacob grows over the next few months and years even – I just think you’re so lucky to have him as a brother, the same way that I feel lucky to have both of you as my children. Over the next couple of months you’re really going to get to know him and I hope you enjoy every moment.

DSC_0326

I recently fell in love with a song byJim Brickman and Lady Antebellum that speaks clearly about some of the wishes and hopes I have for you and I plan to share it with you one day but for now here are a few lines from the song – please know that I wish all of these things for you Violet, and so much more, so very very much more…

May the angels protect you, trouble neglect you, and Heaven except you when its time to go home.  May you always have plenty, your glass never empty and know in your belly…you’re never alone.

May your tears come from laughing, you find friends worth having, with every year passing they mean more then gold.  May you win but stay humble, smile more then grumble, and know when you stumble you’re never alone.

Never alone, never alone….I’ll be in every beat of your heart when you face the unknown.  Wherever you fly, this isn’t goodbye…my love will follow you, stay with you, baby you’re never alone.

Well I have to be honest, as much as I wanted I’m not going to promise that cold winds won’t blow..so when hard times have found you, and your fears surround you, wrap my love around you, yo’ure never alone.

I think I’m pretty lucky to have you as my daughter…it’s just been such a great ride already that I cant’ even imagine what’s yet to come.  Keep on being you, every day, no matter what….
DSC_0526

I hope you always keep that beautiful smile.

Chin up and eyes open sweet girl, the world is yours.

Love Mommy.

Feel Better Kiddo…

Jacob is sick.

I have always hated when things in my life felt out of control and I never realized before I had children just how often I was going to feel that way. When my children get sick, it’s like something inside of me feels so broken for them and I feel this instinctual urge to make it all better as fast as possible. Earlier in the week Jacob started spiking these totally weird and out of the blue fevers that would come hang out with us for a while and then they’d saunter on their merrily way after a few hours…by Wednesday night the fever was bad enough that it needed an intervention in the form of tylenol to help it hit the road. That Daddy Guy and I noticed on Thursday that Jacob seemed out of sorts, he was drowsy and lethargic, and his eyes had deep gray-pink circles around them but when questioned Jacob always responded that he was feeling ok. I guess the part of taking care of a sick child that is the most worrisome or disheartening is their inability to properly explain to you what is going on for them.

On Friday evening Jacob had a lot of congestion, was sneezing, and the fevers continued so we trying to be pro-active we started him on his Flovent Inhaler (steroids for the lungs) so that we didn’t end up in the emergency room this weekend. When Jacob gets a cold or virus, Mike and I get very worried, there is no other way to explain it aside from undeniable fear and worry because he has a very reactive form of asthma. As an infant, Jacob was taken to the emergency room several times with what they called “reactive airways”….basically the call it this and after so many episodes of reactive airways you can pretty much assume that your child has asthma. Over a month ago now we finally ended up with an asthma diagnosis, the reactive type – meaning that Jacob’s asthma is only triggered by illness…the last time we took him into the emergency room his skin was retracting and his oxygen saturation was at 88% – it was in one word….frightening. So far, it seems that our intuition to start the meds before the breathing struggles appeared seems to have done a world a good and while the mild symptoms are lingering – we have avoided the emergency room.

I think the emotion of worry is one that will just always go hand in hand with being a mother because I can recall that from the moment Jacob was conceived the feelings of anxiety for his physical, emotional, and overall well being were always present. I remember my mother telling me that you will always worry and wonder about your children for as long as you live….I have a distinct memory of seeing my mother’s face during my never ending labor with Jacob – and it was in those days and nights that I could see that even though I was 28 years old, she still had concern and worry for me….no mother likes to witness their child in pain, and no mother likes to see their child sick…it’s just how it is, there is no other explanation except true love. From time to time over the past few days I’ve fond Jacob with tears in his eyes, it’s obvious that he doesn’t feel too well, but he doesn’t complain and in those moments when I see him so obviously unwell, my heart hurts – I can’t stand it.

I cant’ stand it one bit.

But, as a mom…it’s my job to keep going, help him feel better, and hold his hand in comfort when it’s taking a little bit longer to get better….

And because worry is a what I consider a big person emotion, something that children really shouldn’t have to deal with….I look at him with a smile of reassurance on my face, letting him know that everything is going to be better soon, and keeping the worry to myself for now…

When he’s older, he’ll have his own worries, but for now – he can just be his little near 3 year old self and save the worry for his Mama.

Feel better kiddo.

Adult Coversation…How I Miss Thee

I spent an hour on the phone the other day talking to my co-worker and our boss, which if you know me well at all, means a lot because I’m just not a phone person. It was one of the first opportunities since Violet was born that I have had to really sit down and connect with the people I left behind at my awesome workplace over 5 months ago. I’m quite fortunate that I’ve been able to work with a good core group of people over the years at my job and there is still four of us from way back when I first started….in my field having four workers stay so consistently over the years is practically unheard of. I have had days on my maternity leave where I really miss my job and I think it has a lot to do with the lack of adult conversation in my life these days. I’ve been trying really hard to have a good balance of family and adult interaction but I find that when I am with friends or family the conversations still seem to center around children, mine or theirs. Please don’t misunderstand what I’m trying to say here, I love my chldren and I do my fair share of the usual mommy banter and chatter but I also have a personality that includes other things as well.

I feel like some people are cool with only being defined by their mothering abilities, and I can wholeheartedly appreciate people who are like that, but it’s just not me. I know that i am so much more then just a mother and sometimes in the busiest, most exhausting moments of mommyhood I find that I am craving or aching for a conversation about politics or music theatre instead of childrens activities, park adventures and poop. I love my job because I feel like I’m good at it, excel at it, and that it was something that just always came naturally too me (counseling) whereas I feel that being a mother, a good mother, took a lot of learning, growing, and many days I wonder if I’m more confident in the work I do with teenagers and their families then I even am at rearing my own family.

I love being a mom, but I also love being Melissa and while on most days the two go hand in hand, there are some days where I long for those days at work where quite frankly nobody really cared if my son was constipated or if my daughter was up all night screaming we all connect because we have the same career and there I am able to talk about travelling, current events, television programs, politics, music that is not sung to the tune of yankke doodle or twinkle twinkle little star and sometimes I still get to share a story about my little people at home…..waiting for me to return from my day at work – and usually everyone laughs or reminices about their own children but then we are quickly turned back to other topics.

I can honestly say that since I’ve been on maternity leave the adult conversation is for the most part absent – talking to my coworkers reminded me about how important it is for me so somehow I’ve got to find a way to make it a part of my life again.

There’s Something About Her

DSC_0557

When you’ve loved one child only for so many years, you can’t possibly fathom loving another human being as much or as perfectly as you love the first, the one who gave you the gift of motherhood….

There’s just something about Violet, our little Diva, that is remarkable to me…something about her that makes being her mom so easy and wonderful. We had the past three months of her life to get to know each other and every day she is showing me a new and vibrant side to herself – she is silly and happy and full of smiles more then any other baby her age that I’ve ever met and every time she greets me with that great big giant grin of hers in the morning my heart melts the same way it did when I experienced new life from her brother.

DSC_0556

This girl. this perfectly made girl, has a personality full of character….I can just feel it radiate from her at all times of the day. Our first month together, I was so certain that she was going to be a baby that cried all the time, that was grumpy, had colic, and complained often but it could not be more the opposite these days – she is none of those things (unless of course you put her in the mean old car seat contraption….evil parents we are). Once we had all the feeding struggles sorted out and the reflux diagnosis things have only gotten better and better with each passing day.

DSC_0550

I’m totally soaking up all of her love and happiness and I’ve decided I’m not going to waste an ounce of it ever because as most relationships between mom’s and daughter’s go, someday she might be really mad at me for a while and as long as I can hold onto these memories, these sunshine moments of every day – I’ll always have my Violet and even if the 15 year old Violet is all grumpy and full of estrogen and pms…..well, she’ll still have me in every beat of her heart whether she wants it or not.

DSC_0551

Sorry Angel, You’re stuck with me – I like you too much. (Insert great big cheesy smiley face here).

Fat Friday

So there’s chocolate in my house and I can’t stand the thought of it hiding in cupboards and on top of the fridge like some form of ancient torture device. I never was a chocolate girl (my snack of choice was always something salty like potato chips) but when I was pregnant with Violet the idea of anything sweet was just to delicious. During my pregnancy with her I craved a lot of fruits but I also indulged in more chocolate then I probably should have and so now I’m finding myself having all sorts of internal conversations about how bad it would be to just have one piece, just one tiny little Easter egg can’t hurt right? The thing is, I know it can hurt, it’s sort of like a recovered alcoholic that has just one taste of alcohol thinking that they could never go back to how bad it use to be…but I’m pretty smart, and I know that food (especially chocolate) tastes pretty darn good and that if I indulge in one piece it’s going to lead to another, and perhaps another, and then it’s all downhill from there – so I did my best to refrain today.

My battle with weight has been an almost lifelong struggle, or perhaps it just feels like it’s been a lifelong battle because its been so hard. It makes me sick to my stomach to hear someone speak of an overweight person as someone who is simply “lazy” or when they say “she’d simply lose the weight if she tried”. I imagine if you’ve never lived a day in your life as an overweight woman you might never understand what it feels like to hear those comments, because while I can’t speak for others, I can honestly say that as a plus sized woman I don’t ever recall a day in my life when I woke up and said – today I think I’d like to be “that fat girl” or “today I don’t care if I can’t shop in the normal size sections of stores”. Come on people?! I know that a lot of people are not educated but I would think this one was easy enough to understand – I never wanted this for myself just so you know.

I can’t remember the exact moment that weight struggles came into my life but I do remember that it was at a time in my life when I felt out of control, confused, and perhaps lonely – during that time weight struggles crept up on me like a cat creeps along the grass before pouncing hard core onto that mouse it was to capture…it hit me and entangled its wretched fingers around my neck before my eyes were open wide enough to see it there – and before I knew it, I was captive. I’m a different person now then I was back when I was 15, 16, 18, 20 years old, because I’m wiser and more experienced now and I can see that life is much more then the tragedies or struggles of the past but I’m still stuck – frozen in those bad food habits that captured me so long ago – I’m fighting to break free, and its hard – I want you to know its really hard, but I try…not because of the worlds ideals, or because of my children even…..I try, and I fight because life, MY LIFE, is important to me.

i met Michael at a time in my life when I felt the best, my career was going great, I had come to peace with parts of my life that previously were too hard to accept, my friends were fabulous, I was traveling, and I had lost 50 pounds….the most weight I had every successfully been able to lose. Now, the years have passed and 2 years later I have a lot of those pounds if not all of them back…I watch those shows on television about people in hospitals or trapped in their homes because of their weight and I feel frightened, my heart races, and I weep for them because I understand perhaps a little what they might be feeling – they did not chose that hospital bed and I’m quite certain they didn’t say “one day I want to be 1000 pounds”. I weep for them because I understand in some way their pain, and I weep for them because I can not imagine what it might feel like to know that you are most likely going to die, at any point, of any given day, because your body can not handle the weight it is inflicted with. When I watch those shows, I can imagine the perfect diet, the weight falling off my body, the changes I’m going to make because of these people….but the next day it is the same struggles I have face since that day weight struggles first pounced on me like a cat to its prey.

I’m glad you my stalkers readers are here on my team, uplifting me, helping me to keep that chin up as this slow process unfolds.  It’s a painful process for anyone to endure I think, to examine yourself in a way you’ve never examined before, admit you have a problem, and then turn around and do your best to try and kick it out of your life like you toss your trash to the curb.  For this week I’m encouraing you to think differently when you see an overweight person this week – instead of turning to a friend and saying “oh my god that person is disgusting” try imagining what that person might feel when they wake up in the morning knowing that when they go out somewhere, someone is going to stare at them or call them a name, and then imagine how impossible it would be to ever have the courage to make frightening difficult changes in your lifestyle – when people dont’ care anyways.

I’m sure my friends and family would advocate for me – I’m more then just a person with a weight struggle.  I’m a great loyal friend, daughter, wife, and an awesome mother.  Take this journey with me to look at yourself in a different way, even if you don’t have a single pound to lose – I’m guaranteed there something in your life that can be discovered, improved, unravelled….whatever you want to call it and whatever is it – we can do it together….we are all more then the problems that exist in our lives, so much more.

Join me in reminding the world about that…

One hard earned pound off at a time.

Just so the logistics are still here….this weeks goal is to drink more water.