A Letter to My Preschool Graduate

To my preschool graduate,

You did it. You made it through the first part of your education. The part where you learn some of lives most valuable lessons. To follow direction, share with others, colors and numbers, creative play, how to make friends, compromise, to be kind, how to stand up for yourself, how to clean up your own mess, say sorry. All things some adults still struggle with.

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 You’ve blossomed so much this year. I loved waiting for you in the pick up line and seeing your class file into the classroom in a double file line, each of you hand in hand with a special buddy. Without fail, you’d shout “MOMMA”, and it instantly put a smile on my face. I knew you were happy at school, and equally happy to come home. We really worked on “using kind words” and that good ol’ golden rule. We had a bout with bullying and many nights we would role play on how to stand up for yourself. You learned that friends don’t always want to do what you are doing and there is a fine line between individuality and compromise. You thrived in all things artistic and would be over the moon on days you received the class favorite, “share can”. You learned how to write your name and had the most loving teachers that spoke right to your heart.

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Our little preschool has been your little safety net. With all the changes you’ve gone through in the past two years, your school always remained the same. That alone leaves your momma with bittersweet emotions as we venture off to kindergarden.

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 The one phrase you are guaranteed to hear as a parent is “it goes so fast”, and boy is it true. In today’s society, kids are forced to grow up so fast, so my hope for you is you remain little. Pick flowers for your momma because they are pretty, eat dessert after every meal, wear bows the size of your head because you can, put bandaids on boo boos that don’t even exist, and let your biggest worry be how many bites you have to take to be finished with your dinner.

You will forever be my special girl. You made me a momma and have a place in my heart no other could replace. You remind me so much of myself, yet have so many of your Dad’s characteristics. I love you for that. I love that I will never have another just like you.

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Happy Preschool Graduation Landyn Noella. You are my whole world.

xo
Mommy

On fear

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photo credit: Bows & Arrow Photography

I’ve come to realize that fear is something I struggle with. Fear of the unknown. Fear of death. Fear of what other people think. I was sitting outside yesterday afternoon watching Landyn play and it hit me like a ton of bricks. I am so blessed. I have my health. I have a beautiful home. I get to be home everyday to watch my daughter grow up. I don’t have a boss to answer too. I have the most supportive boyfriend that loves me unconditionally and makes me a better person with each passing day. I have parents that people only wish for. So if I have so many blessings in my life, why the hell do I let fear hold me down? Why do I let it rob me of joy? Why can’t I live in the present and trust goodness for my life?

I truly believe that the only way to have complete peace in your life it to have a relationship with God. Me and religion comes in waves. I believe, but I am disconnected. I want to find my place in a church, but I am not sure where I fit in. Some of the people I admire most in this life are Godly women. They radiate joy and peace. Their inner beauty shines through. I envy them truly. I wish I could be half the women they are.

I tend to convince myself that I am the only person on this earth that suffers from panic attacks. That I am the only single mother entrepreneur trying to provide for her and her daughter. Should I go back to the corporate world so I “appear” more stable? That I am screwing up as a mother. That because I am a single mom I need to compensate elsewhere by being super model skinny or financially successful.

Where do you draw the line? When is enough enough? I waste so much time talking myself down from fear and worry. I know exactly how to calm myself and the power of breathing and exercise. So why does this stuff continue to paralyze? Why can’t I let up on myself?

I wish I could end this post with all the answers. But the reality is, I have none. I think this is why I have been so distant from this space. If I am going to share, I believe I must have some sort of resolution. I know people out there struggle with similar feelings and want answers. I know that the 30,000 page views a month aren’t just strangers. They are family, friends, acquaintances at my daughters preschool and dance class, my boyfriends family and friends. I fear appearing weak in their eyes. Blogging can be a very vulnerable place. And because of that I wonder at what point will I close the book all together. Do I want to embark on this next chapter of life and let the world in on it too?

For now, I am going to come here and just let my raw emotions unfold. Sometimes my thoughts might be jumbled or sentences won’t be complete. I apologize in advance. Maybe I’ll throw a cuss word in here and there. But I’m working on being more open about my fears because they are real and we all struggle with them.

Why isn’t it the things worth saying that we are most afraid of?

xo

Where I am at as a blogger

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photo c/o Bows and Arrow Photography

I realize I haven’t been the best about updating you on life happenings. Like everyone, I’ve been busy keeping up with life and I haven’t taken the time to document much. Truthfully, I am trying to figure out which direction I want to take with this blog. To be a successful blogger, is a full time job. It’s having your camera ready to document every single event of your day. It’s taking time away from your family or pausing a moment so you can share it with the world. You made a killer egg salad sandwich? Let’s blog it.

I am struggling in this area. The blog world has become completely oversaturated. When I started this journey over 4 years ago, I was a big fish in a small pond. Now it’s quite the opposite. I don’t feel the authenticity anymore. Just like in real life, blogging has cliques. And cliques are something I shy away from. In fact, they make me very unmotivated to share my story. When I first started this journey I had my hands in everything. Maybe it’s the single mom in me and the pressure I put on myself. My theme now, is very different then most girls blogging out there. I find it hard to relate. I am not growing my family, writing on my faith, coordinating blog conferences, or homeschooling my children. Yet on the other side of the spectrum I am not traveling the world, buying designer brands and attending fashion week…one day.

My theme is unique to me and sometimes I feel like it’s a narrow one. And because of this, I have shyed away from a lot because of the vulnerability. My heart wants to have a fashion only blog. I am debating if I want to start something from scratch or rebrand this place to fashion with sprinkles of my personal life.

I’ve started to make this space more about me and less about Landyn. She’s entering her school years and I’m not sure I want to publicize her life to thousands of people every day anymore. I’m not sure I want everyone at Landyn’s school to know about my struggle with anxiety and my insecurities as a parent. These are all very valid feelings that have been swirling around in my head…

I’ll get off my soap box for today. LOVE you all. Thank you for always supporting me no matter what direction I take.

xo

and a little peek into our lives lately via my iphone…

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My first mammogram at 30

I am a worrier by nature. If you know me personally or have followed my journey here for some time, you’d know that I have an anxious heart. I tend to take things to the worst case scenerio and work myself up over little things. I am a total work in progress you guys…

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A few month back I felt a lump in my right boob. Me doing what I do best, I ran to my doctor. She examined me and called it fiber cystic breasts and told me to cut back on my caffeine. While I truly trust my doctor with my life, every time I go in there for something, I assume the worst. Even though she was not concerned one bit, in the back of my mind I couldn’t get cancer out of my mind. Every time someone would hug me, or I’d hit my chest against something, I would be reminded, and my mind would shift into overdrive. The lump would get bigger around my monthly cycle, and then go back down. I was told this is a good sign but my mind wouldn’t back down.

Why can’t I just trust the process? Why do I try to diagnose myself? Why can’t I just trust my doctors?

I may never have the answers to those questions. But having dealt with anxiety a good majority of my life, I can tell you that peace of mind is a beautiful thing. If you can find it, DO IT. I don’t care what it costs.

The American Cancer Society recommends women get yearly mammograms starting at age 40. But with my doctors approval and some family history, I went in and got an ultrasound AND mammogram. You guys that whole “get your boobs squished” phrase is NO JOKE. I most definitely was the youngest gal in there, and people definitely asked “why are you here”. I got an appointment, exam, and results all within two hours. I know this isn’t the norm, so thank GOD for good health care and a few great connections.

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All is good. I am completely clear. My doctor was right as always. My mind is at ease.

 The reality is, my anxiety has shifted into overdrive since becoming a single mom. It’s all me all the time. Many days I want to just focus on being a mom, not worry about bills getting paid or growing a business. It’s reality though. Knowing how much Landyn depends on me is overwhelming at times. I ask myself what she would do without me. It’s one of my greatest fears.

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photos: Bows and Arrow Photography

And the thing is, I have it so good. I have so many things to be thankful for. I’m sure there is another mom sitting out there that is really struggling. Maybe she has no dad involved or has to work two jobs to get by. Maybe her husband lost his job and isn’t sure how they will feed their family.

I thank God for my blessings everyday. My beautiful home. My supportive boyfriend who supports my dreams and picks up so much of the slack. My health. My parents that are my backbone. My beautiful daughter that reminds me everyday of my purpose in life. Getting to have this space that helps to support my family as a single mom.

We are all fighting a hard battle. I think the older I get the more I see everyday as a gift. And for me, being proactive in my health is one thing I truly believe in. I’d rather hear the “I told you so’s”, then have to loose sleep worrying.

One of the things I am really working on, is learning to put my oxygen mask on first. As mom’s we are so inclined to meet our child’s needs first when it should be the complete opposite. Healthy momma means healthy child. When in doubt, always go the safe route.

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Thank you for following my journey and always letting me open my heart to you on this blog.

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xo