Most people never disclose what’s going on in their marriage. For the better part of life, we pretend that every thing is picturesque and we hide behind our pain with smiles and laughs in front of others. Maybe in fear of judgment. Maybe in doubt of ourselves. Maybe in doubt of our abilities to be able to handle life. I don’t know what it is. Why we feel the need to front that life is great. That we are unbroken. That we are happy.
I think as we get older, we find a median. A middle ground of solace. A place of comfort. A place where we feel we fit in and are safe. I don’t know where that is for you, but for me… it’s wherever my daughter is at.
I love how people give glimpses of their happy moments. They post the happy pictures on Facebook and Instagram. And everything seems peachy-keen. They forego taking pictures of the temper tantrums and meltdowns because at those times, they are too busy dealing with the chaos than having time taking pictures.
Life. It’s not easy. And no one knows what’s going on in your life. At times, we feel attacked. At times, we feel judged. At times, we feel insecure. But knowing that we have a core group of friends who have our best interest at hand… should give us strength. And that in no way do we judge, do we mean you harm or pain, or that we believe we are in a better situation than you.
I am so fortunate to have such a great circle of women who have given me strength when I didn’t have enough on my own. I am so forever grateful to have people to break bread with and share the woes of life. Thanks, Netters, Jenn, Allison… life became that much simpler because of you gals.
What once was a leisurely activity of perusing aisle after aisle at my own pace… has now turned into a strategic, goal oriented mission. Taking a toddler to the grocery store poses many challenges, for me at least. First and foremost, it’s this cart!!! The one with the car!!! Why???? Why does it have to be at the front of the store???? Why, I ask??? In plain view, so you can’t even lie to your kid saying… “oh no babe, it’s not available today!!! Rats.” Haha. I’m a small girl. It takes brute force to maneuver these bad boys through crowded aisles.
Yesterday was no exception. Just the sucky part was I was sore as heck from my run. After literally going through every aisle looking for quinoa… I just wanted to plummet to the floor and weep. Like a cranky, whiney baby. I wanted to shake and stomp my legs and just let out a wail. I was just exhausted. I wanted to hang my head and just sob. And sob loudly.
Not only was my body sore, I had my little munchkin spilling things in the car, so I had to bend up and down numerous times. I had to continuously tell her to keep her head and arms in the car. I had to stop the cart every time she wanted to “look” at something. While I love my grocery shopping experiences with her, yesterday was an entirely different experience.
I love the laughs I got from the men in the store. The comments, “oh that looks like a lot of fun.” Really? “Then, why don’t you push this beast while I walk pleasantly next to you without breaking a sweat.” (That of course was my own internal dialogue with my irritable hamster running wild). There are the sweet, understanding people who just give you that look like… “girl, I feel you. Been there. Done that.” A nice, super buff guy was like… “wow, I feel you. I have to do that with my son. It’s hard.” It’s comedy when you think about it, but going through it was agony yesterday. I don’t know how many times I bumped into something. And the best part… when I got stuck like Austin Powers in the aisle because I put the cart horizontally. So here I am trying to squeeze past the handle and the shelf while trying to get the cart to turn around!!! Ahahahahahahaha.
You can tell too… the people with kids and without. The ones with kids…they smile and move out of the way in sheer empathy and comradery. The ones without… eye roll. Stand until YOU MOVE. Wth.
Anyways, all this was for the sake of making a new dish my BFF with four kiddos told me about. A healthy hamburger steak. I know. You hear HAMBURGER and think how can this be healthy. Well, we put in QUINOA (took me on a mission to find), kale, spinach, shallots, carrots, and celery. I always use organic meat and the leanest possible.
Here’s the result of all my effort while I maintain an inkling of sanity!!! It was delish!!! The best part… O just gobbled it up without knowing how many veggies were inside. The white leafy vegetable is white kimchi… made by my mom. O has now ventured to eat peanut butter sandwiches and white kimchi. Hooray. So now, lunches are getting easier to make.
I love this picture of O from behind. We went on an impromptu walk to Rite Aid and then on the way back we went to the park. What was supposed to be a quick trip turned into a 4.5 hour excursion. And it was pure bliss. Even with the scorching hot sun. I loved it.
Prior to our departure, I asked O what she would like to wear for our walk. I was thinking shorts and a T-shirt. But nope. Girlfriend said (and yes, she’s been copying me using the word “hey girlfriend… dude girlfriend.” Really, I need to stop talking to her so much… ahahahahahahaha)… “Momma, I need to wear my beautiful, wedding dress for our walk.”
I said, “Boo, we are just going on a quick walk.”
O: But momma, I NEEEEEEEED to wear my wedding dress.
How do you say no? You don’t. Actually, I try not to get too involved in her outfit coordination because it’s a freedom she should own. So even with the crazy hair pins and what not… I try to let it go.
Exhibit #1: See this…done exactly as the boss ordered!!!
Her dad, on the other hand, says… “don’t you think she’ll stick out too much? Draw too much attention and take away from the class?” Ahahahahahahaha. I’m sure she does to a certain degree, but I don’t care. It’s her freedom to express herself.
Anyways, I loved this day. It reminded me of what childhood is all about. To explore. To learn. To live without fear of scrutiny and judgment. I loved that she didn’t care if her pretty dress got dirty. I loved that she let go of her OCD tendencies to not like getting dirty and took her shoes off and ran into the sand. I loved that she looked exhilarated while throwing sand into the air. It was a moment of pure joy. And a reminder of innocence and love. I hope and pray I never forget this feeling.
This kid… she gives me so many gifts daily. Yes, headaches too. But I am so immensely thankful she walked into my life.
Side note: ****And a quick shout out to my sister for stepping up as a Cancer Survivor Mentor!!! Yay. My sis feels embarrassed when I say she’s a survivor. But she is. That’s fact. She down plays her cancer bout because she thinks she had the easy one. No one has an easy battle with cancer. Cancer (that bitch… ) is cancer. I’m so proud of her for becoming a mentor for a young 36 year old woman who is going through her own battle against this A-hole disease. It has spread from her thyroid to her lungs and hips due to improper diagnosis… please keep her in your prayers
One morning after dropping off O at school, I stared at my phone all morning and realized I was spending far too much time perusing other people’s lives on Facebook. It made me think, “man, everyone else seems so happy. What’s my problem?” Then later in the day, there was a parody about FB on some show saying, “Keeping It Real With Your Fake Friends.” And I thought, “Omg, who on FB are really the people that make a difference in my life?” That’s when I decided to deactivate my account. More than not, most of the people on my account are people I never interact with or talk to anymore, so why divulge my life onto them? Do they care? Are they smirking at me talking crap? There were some friends I wasn’t that close to in highschool that actually have become great confidantes through it… but that’s really rare.
I missed FB at first. The first few weeks were a bit challenging. But now, I don’t have the urge to look anymore. Of course during great O moments I want to shout it out to the FB world… but I don’t. I do have my O’s Momma FB page… but it’s not the same. I have 18 likes. Ahahahahahaha. But that’s ok, because it is another affirmation of who cares to be a part of my life and who doesn’t.
More and more as I get older… I know the difference between the fake friends who are “keeping it real” and my true friends. The real, true friends act and do… the fake just talk and say “yeah sure, I will support you” but never do. Even with my run, no one other than my sister and Julie donated to my cause.
I know I didn’t solicit much, but I did put it out there and no one helped. There will be a day when you or someone you know is suffering from a disease… and you will put yourself out there to help… and you will ask for support. At that time, remember if you were that friend that turned the other cheek and kept scrolling down to see what your other friends were doing. Or if you were the friend that took the time to stop and see if this cause was worth even a dollar. I truly try to support my friends and kids in their fundraising goals, it’s important for me to show that I care and support them. It’s the little gestures that count.