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Sunday, July 24, 2011

New Location

I have made the decision to condense all of my blogs into one place. So from now on if you would like to read about us you can find us Here. I will be blogging about our daily life, our home schooling adventures, and my photography journeys. We hope to see you there.

Monday, May 9, 2011

A Letter to my mother

I will start off by saying Happy “Mother’s” Day to you, but this will be the last time you get this acknowledgement from me. I no longer want anything to do with you nor do I want your lame attempts at being a grandmother to my children. They deserve better, as do I. I am tired of giving you the benefit of the doubt and waiting for your “teenage” years to pass. I realize that you lost a lot of that because you were busy supposedly being a “mother.” Well I have waited over 18 years for you to get out of this phase and I am done waiting for you to grow up and be the mother/grandmother that I was so hoping you could be. I gave up my “teenage” years to raise your sons. While you were out drinking and partying it up I was at home tending to 3 young boys instead of going out and enjoying my childhood. I should have been attending football games and school dances and having sleep overs with friends, but I couldn’t because I was too busy trying to keep our family together while you went out to have your fun because I knew that you had been tied down and not allowed to do anything after getting pregnant with me and then marrying dad. I thought it would last a year or two max, boy was I wrong. This is not to say that a mother should never go out and enjoy herself occasionally because I know that it is important to my sanity to get out every once in awhile with other adults to just have a good time. But, after that fun is all said and done, I come home to my children and back into my role as a mother to them. I was in the same situation that you were in at 16 years old but yet I have managed to be a responsible, loving, attentive mother to my children. I did go out and have fun after I left Ricky in a lame attempt to rebuild our relationship, little did I know that it wouldn’t work. I was so desperate to have a relationship with you, but I was not going to sacrifice my children for it. Our relationship just wasn’t, and isn’t, that important to me. I do not feel that you were EVER there for me. I mean you basically kicked me out after I got pregnant and then as I was giving birth as a newly 17 year old you were “out of town” with John, knowing full well that I was within days of my due date. You don’t think at a time like that having MY own mother there would have been nice? Thankfully Ricky’s mother stepped up to the plate with that. It’s pretty sad that she was more of a mother to me than my own mother and more of a grandmother to Kyley and Dawson than you ever were. For the 1st five years of Dawson’s life he didn’t think that I had a mother and he thought that you were “aunt.” What does that say about you? Not much that’s for sure.


I will not make this letter about all the horrific things that you have put me through because it’s just not healthy for me to relive it. I am finally at the point in my life where I am letting it all go. I know that our relationship failed because of you and your addictions and your lack of ability to love not because of anything that I did or didn’t do. I tried to make things work, I tried fostering a relationship between us and between you and my children, you were just unable and/or unwilling to allow it to happen. I am not sure why, nor do I care at this point because I am done. Completely. I do not want you to ever contact me or my children any longer. We do not want any of your lame attempts at saying that you care because we know differently. Yes even my children know. Do you realize that they place bets on how long you will stay when you drop something off because they know that it is a lame attempt on your part? They realize that your boyfriend who beats the shit out of you is more important than they are. They realize that you care more about grandchildren who you may never again get the chance to see (Hailey and Parker) than you do about them. So I leave you with these parting words from a very fitting song…”Perfect” by SimplePlan, as this sums up just about everything that I have been feeling over the past 25+ years.

“Nothing's gonna change the things that you said
Nothing's gonna make this right again
Please don't turn your back
I can't believe it's hard
Just to talk to you
but you don't understand

'Cuz we lost it all
Nothing lasts forever
I'm sorry
I can't be perfect
Now it's just too late and
We can't go back
I'm sorry
I can't be perfect”

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Judgment



There is nothing more that I hate than being judged for living our life outside the norm. I am not one to make a rash decision. I research and try to find what works best for our family. I never go into anything blindly, at least not when it comes to my children or my family. I do not put my children at risk, whether that is physically, socially or emotionally. So it goes without saying that I am pissed off now that I am being called out yet again for my decisions. Decisions that I did not come into lightly.

The kids' grandfather has yet again bashed my choice to homeschool the children. He is concerned that they are not performing academically as well as their peers. Yet I find it odd that they never bring this up to me. They only bring it up to the kids' father who is not really present in their day to day activities so he has no clue about what they are doing. I wish they would say something to me about it. I have no concerns over the kids academics, I know that they know the same, if not more, than their age-related peers in terms of the core subjects, you know those ones that are only taught to achieve AYP (adequate yearly progress) in public schools. In terms of subjects that public school children are not tested on, they know much more. I am so tired of being called out in regards to what they are learning, especially from people who rarely interact with them. I know that their cousins are never quizzed about their knowledge of what society thinks they should know and I am almost certain that their parents are not questioned or judged about the education the children are receiving in public school. Even when these children are struggling with the academic aspect of public school the parents are never questioned. It seems as if only my choices are condemned because we refuse to "walk the line."





Apparently another concern is the fact that Dawson has never been in school, and probably will never be in school, so to them that means that my children are sheltered and do not have any friends. For those of you that know us know how laughable that is. Dawson is a very outspoken child who loves adventure and has never had a problem making friends. In fact often times we have quite the opposite problem with him. He makes friends where ever he goes. Often times on the playground Dawson has a following of children that look up to him and want to play with him. He will interact with people of all ages without concern. So I do not see how I am socially stunting my children by keeping them home. We belong to a wonderful, secular, home school co-op where the kids are able to interact with other children, and honestly they both have fallen right in with their friends, as if they have been a part of that group for years. We also have an amazing family that we get together with every week so that our children can play and explore together.

The kids also attend classes at the various museums, where they have had no trouble making friends. They each attend a karate school, again where neither of them had any issues blending into group. Kyley takes theater classes where she has made numerous friends as well. Making friends has never been a concern of mine, at least not since pulling Kyley from public school. I will admit that Kyley did have some shyness to overcome in her early years, but during those years she was not home schooling, she was attending the local public school. Since pulling her she has really come out of her shell, so yes let's blame home schooling for all of the social awkwardness in children. I am not doubting the fact that there are some home schooled children who are sheltered, mine however are not. We are rarely home because we are always out exploring everything that our city has to offer.




I really wish that these concerns would be brought up to me so that I could put all of their concerns to rest. I have researched everything that our family does, whether that is the food that goes into our bodies, the medications that we take, or the education that our children receive. We are doing what works best for us and right now not attending public school is what is working best for us.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

I am THAT mom....

I am THAT mom, you know the one that slept with her baby (even in the hospital.)


I am THAT mom, you know the one that put cloth diapers on her baby's bottom and actually found it addictive to buy and/or sew cute little diapers for their bottoms.  


I am THAT mom, you know the one that breastfed all of her children until they were ready to wean, even though that was nearly 6 years old for one of them. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that never had a hat on her tiny little baby, unless of course they wanted one. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that never had socks or shoes on her tiny baby.


I am THAT mom, you know the one that wore her babies and barely ever put them down when they were under six months old. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that never fed her baby jarred baby food. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that allowed her baby to eat dirt. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that did not hover and tell her children that they could not do something because they were "too little."


I am THAT mom, you know the one that allowed her three year old son to get a mohawk. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that also allowed her four year old son to get his ears pierced and then gauged. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that allowed her twelve year old daughter to get her belly button pierced. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that took her seventeen year old daughter to get a tattoo. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that does not censor anything in regards to what my children listen to or watch. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that listens to her children's concerns and gives them advice without shaming or instilling fear into their minds. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that allows her children to have a choice in  how they want to live their lives, exploring, experimenting and learning from their own mistakes. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that supports her children's decisions even though they may not be in line with her own beliefs.


I am THAT mom, you know the one that refuses to hide behind embarrassment when we discuss uncomfortable topics. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that strives to live a life where I am not controlling my children's actions but often falters due to societal pressures. 


I am THAT mom, you know the one that wants to live a peaceful life but often falters and ends up screaming in frustration. 


I know that there are many aspects of my parenting that make people roll their eyes, like when my son walks out with shorts on, no shoes and no coat when it is forty degrees outside or like when I allow my children to pierce their bodies at "tender, young ages." My style of parenting definitely does not work for everybody, but it works for us. I am often questioned about my motives or my goals for my children as they grow. My goals and aspirations for them are just for them to be happy, healthy and confident young people who stand up for what they believe and know that no matter what I will love them regardless of their decisions and/or mistakes that they make. I, also, want them to know that they can come to me to talk about anything without feeling shamed and judged. I do not think there is anything more than I can ask for. 


I have witnessed parents who push their children so hard, wanting them to succeed in something that they feel will better their children's lives in some way shape or form. A lot of parents push their children so hard that it in turn makes them despise their parents and/or the activity that they once loved. I want my children to want to succeed in life because they are passionate about it, not because I forced them into it. I have always given my children the option to try out anything that they feel they would enjoy. My only stipulation is that if I pay for a semester or season that they do their best and complete it. If after that they don't enjoy it they can opt to not continue. Thankfully my children have been given the freedom to explore and have found activities that they are passionate about and excel at.

Opening Up



I feel so refreshed today. I opened up to somebody who is damn near a stranger to me, my occupational therapist. I cannot believe that I did, but I can honestly say that it felt good to get it out there. He apparently thinks I should write a book about the insanity that is my life. I have thought about it on numerous occasions, just have never put it into fruition. It is definitely something that I have researched and put much thought into, perhaps one day I will take the plunge.









This is actually a huge step for me, discussing such personal issues with a stranger face to face. I am an open person and will tell you almost anything that you want to know about me, however, most topics don't come up often, especially those that are this deep and personal. I think this experience is part of my attempt to let things go and keep it real.




In order to keep things real I need to come to terms with exactly why I am broken and vulnerable, why I am so closed off physically and often emotionally from the world, and why I struggle with allowing people to love me. I know this is a topic that I cover often in my writings here, but this is a huge part of a healing process that I am going through right now. I want to be free of this brokenness. I want to be able to receive the love that I know that I deserve and in order to do that I have to figure out how to accept love. Real love, not just the sexual "love" that I am used to getting, a true, honest and unconditional love.




My parents broke me. I am not sure if it was one more so than the other, but each of them broke me in their own way. I know that a lot of my struggles stem from the lack of love I received as a child. I received a love from my father that wasn't truly love, it was a self satisfying, warped sense of love on his part, but it was all I knew. I thought that in order to be loved I had to give a part of myself that was my most precious possession, my innocence. My mother on the other hand was so closed off from me and never offered any sort of love. I was never good enough, despite the fact that I excelled at nearly everything that I tried. Whether that was academics or sports, I always excelled. I struggled making friends because I wasn't sure what they wanted from me. I didn't feel good enough to have a friend because my mother never let me know that I was good. There was always something that I could do better. When I topped out on my grades, it went unrecognized, as if the excellence did not matter. I was either not good enough or too good. I think this created a lot of conflict as I aged. My mother couldn't stand that I was better than she was at life, and she still can't. I have accomplished more in my life than she could ever dream of and I feel that it really irritates her, even though we rarely talk.




I am trying to overcome the lack of support and encouragement that I have dealt with my entire life. I have built a wall. A wall that says 'I don't care what other people think of me. Or I don't need your approval. Or validation doesn't matter, because I don't need it.' when in reality I am screaming, 'Please like me. Please tell me I am good. Please let me know that you approve of the way I parent, or the way I write, or the way I photograph.' I thrive when people tell me what great mother I am. I thrive when people tell me what amazing photographs I take. I thrive when people tell me that they love my writing. I want to be liked, but I still don't know how to accept it. I have a horrible time accepting compliments because I am not use to them. When people say something nice about me I often think to myself, 'What do they want from me?' Why can I not just accept that people like me for me, not what I can do for them, or what I will give them. I am a wonderful person. I care deeply for my friends. I would do anything for them. Now if only I could get out of my own way and allow myself to receive the love and adoration that I deserve. It's a work in progress.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Unexpected Conversation

I feel so refreshed today. I opened up to somebody who is damn near a stranger to me, my occupational therapist. I cannot believe that I did, but I can honestly say that it felt good to get it out there. He apparently thinks I should write a book about the insanity that is my life. I have thought about it on numerous occasions, just have never put it into fruition. It is definitely something that I have researched and put much thought into. Perhaps one day.

This is actually a huge step for me, discussing such personal issues with a stranger face to face. I am an open person and will tell you almost anything that you want to know about me, however, most topics don't come up often, especially ones this deep and personal. I think this is part of my attempt to let things go and keep it real.

In order to keep things real I need to come to terms with exactly why I am broken and vulnerable, why I am so closed off physically and often emotionally from the world, and why I struggle with allowing people to love me. I know this is a topic that I cover often in my writings here, but this is a huge part of myself right now. I want to be free of this brokenness. I want to be able to receive the love that I know that I deserve and in order to do that I have to figure out how to accept love. Real love. Not just the sexual "love" that I am used to getting. A true and honest and unconditional love.

My parents broke me. I am not sure if it was one more so than the other, but each of them broke me in their own way. I know that a lot of my struggles stem from the lack of love I received as a child. I received a love from my father that wasn't truly love, it was a self satisfying, warped sense of love on his part, but it was all I knew. I thought that in order to be loved I had to give a part of myself that was my most precious possession. My innocence. My mother on the other hand was so closed off from me and never offered any sort of love. I was never good enough, despite the fact that I excelled at nearly everything that I tried. Whether that was academics or sports, I always excelled. I struggled making friends because I wasn't sure what they wanted from me. I didn't feel good enough to have a friend because my mother never let me know that I was good. There was always something that I could do better. And when I topped out on my grades, it went unrecognized, as if the excellence did not matter. I was either not good enough...or too good. I think this created a lot of conflict as I aged. My mother couldn't stand that I was better than she was at life, and she still can't. I have accomplished more in my life than she could ever dream of and I feel that it really irritates her, even though we rarely talk.

I am trying to overcome the lack of support and encouragement that I have dealt with my entire life. I have built a wall. A wall that says 'I don't care what other people think of me. Or I don't need your approval. Or validation doesn't matter, because I don't need it.' when in reality I am screaming, 'Please like me. Please tell me I am good. Please let me know that you approve of the way I parent, or the way I write, or the way I photograph.' I thrive when people tell me what great mother I am. I thrive when people tell me what amazing photographs I take. I thrive when people tell me that they love my writing. I want to be liked, but I still don't know how to accept it. I have a horrible time accepting compliments because I am not use to them. When people say something nice about me I often think to myself, 'What do they want from me?' Why can I not just accept that people like me for me, not what I can do for them, or what I will give them. I am a wonderful person. I care deeply for my friends. I would do anything for them. Now if only I could get out of my own way and allow myself to receive the love and adoration that I deserve. It's a work in progress.