Serenityville

 Aside from my Fiance and my children, I am surrounded by some extremely strong personality types.  From relatives and friends, whom I see quite often, to co-workers and an ex, I am pretty meek comparatively.  I went from being the shy girl, to finally speaking up.  But, there comes a time where you have to just let some things roll.  This I have learned, but sometimes we all don’t get the same life lessons.  So, here is what I do to cope.

I go to Serenityville. 

It’s the little place I find in my mind where I kind of wipe all of the negativity out.  Whether I need to picture the beautiful landscaping at my favorite parks, to picking up a good book and just losing myself in it, I find Serenityville in my mind. 

When I say those around me have strong personalities, sometimes it goes a little bit further than that.  Sometimes, I don’t just don’t agree.  When I don’t contort to their views, they drill and drill and drill their opinions into my head, hoping I will budge.  Maybe in the past I used to, just to appease them.  But, I think that once you become a Mom, it is so important to hold on to YOUR beliefs.  Not theirs.  Do I need to be rude?  Not at all.  Instead, I tell them I understand what they are saying.  When they don’t stop the texting, the calling, the e-mailing, the repetitiveness or the talking, I find my place in Serenityville and hope they move on to the next person.

Why argue?  No need to fight.  Let it go and find your zone.  They can talk and talk all they want.  You don’t have to fight back to show that you aren’t backing down.  What’s the point?  Let them stress themselves out over nothing.  They can worry about the stress it puts on them.  Don’t let them put it on you too.  

Sometimes your best defense in a fight, is the ability to walk away.

Take a deep breath.  Find some serenity.  Ask yourself if it will matter a year from now.  If it will, then stand up for yourself.  If it’s just the strong-willed people around you doing what it is they do best, just think of that peaceful place and smile. 

The weakest are often those that use their voice and power to try to be heard.  The strong are those who can turn the other cheek.

xoxo,

Stacy 

 

 

 

 

 

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Post-Divorce – Become Friends With Your Ex

If you are going through the start of a divorce right now, you are probably wondering, “What is this woman thinking!?”  Divorce is painful, hurtful, and while you are going through it, you vow to never speak nicely to your ex again.

But, I promise, in most situations, it does get better.  (NOTE:  This is coming from a person who went through the mother of all divorces, no lie).

I have posted before about how rough my divorce was.  We hated each other.  We didn’t even like each other before the divorce, let alone during and for a short-time after.  But, after almost 4 years and a lot of letting things go, I have learned to be a better person.  Not only for the sake of nerves and stomach ulcers, but for the sake of my beautiful daughter.

If I spend the rest of my daughters childhood hating her Dad, what is that going to teach her?  If I speak poorly of him in front of her, how is that going to make her feel?  Instead, I grew up.  I did a lot of growing.  I find the good.  Do he and I always agree, HECK NO!  We still bicker and get on each other’s nerves, but we can try to work things out for her sake. 

No child needs to grow up in a home where a lot of fighting happens.  Divorced children do not need to grow up in homes where constant parental bashing happens.  Let them grow up in peace. 

Don’t let your child feel jaded before they even start their lives!

Last night, my daughter and I made a diaper cake for her Dad and his fiance’s baby shower.  She is going to feel so proud walking into that shower with something she made for her new baby brother.  I don’t even want to imagine me trying to pull her away from the situation.  My other two children, ages 2 and 3, even helped roll up some of the diapers.  My daughter is and was so excited.  Just because her new sibling isn’t any relation to me, it’s her brother.  I am so excited and happy for her.  And she knows that.

Maybe they didn’t do that for me when I had my two children after the divorce, but it’s ok.  I feel great about myself and I feel great about the example I set. 

Never follow the lead of anybody else.  Make your own path.  In all aspects of life, even divorce. 

Children watch us.  They learn from us.  Never forget that!

“Let your past make you better, not bitter.”  ~ Unknown

xoxo,

Stacy

The Misery Trap

Sometimes you find yourself surrounded by negativity.  Constant negativity – Constant misery.  You try so hard to fight through this, using your positivity as your shield.  Then, suddenly:

BAM!

You’ve been captured by the misery trap.

Misery hunters often act in the same way as animal hunters, although animal hunters usually hunt as a fun hobby.  Not misery hunters.  They lay out their bait to try to capture their prey.  They feed off of your misery.  This is not for fun.  This is only because misery loves company.

No matter what you do, misery hunters always have something negative to say.  It could be the happiest day of the year, but they would find something to complain about.  You could offer to do things for them, but they would find reasons to complain about what you did.  You don’t do anything right.  They have to do everything because that is the only way it will get done correctly!  It’s a lose-lose situation folks!

YOU

JUST

CAN’T

WIN.

You can’t fight with a martyr.

It’s hard not getting stuck in this misery.  It acts just like quicksand.  You can conquer it though.  Trust me.  It can be done.  When they start going on the misery rampage, block your ears (not literally, but you know what I mean.  Block your ears and then smile and nod. 

Smile and nod.

That’s it.  When they see that they are not getting to you, it’s going to do 1 of 2 things. 

1) It will irritate them and make them even more miserable.  You will hear the mutter and grumbling even louder than before.  They aren’t getting to you and it is going to drive them crazy.

OR

2) They may catch your positivity.  Even if it’s for a split second, your burst of positivity may act like a net being thrown over that misery.  

Either way, just let it roll.   Let it roll right off your shoulders.  Try and fight back as hard as you can.  Don’t sink to their level and fight in a negative manner.  Fight ’em with your positivity.

Smile and nod.

xoxo,

Stacy

 

PAGING ALL HAPPY PEOPLE! Are Any Of You Left?

I’m happy.  I whistle.  I smile.  I laugh.  I sing (terribly, but that’s not my point.)  I like being happy.  I like being around happy people.  I like being excited for a holiday or even just a weekend.  I like finding things to be happy about.  But, why am I finding myself surrounded by such unhappy people?

Can anybody help me out?

Yes, the economy is bad.  True, raises at work have not been handed out in years.  Gas prices are crazy.  Holidays are a lot of work.  Families can get a little crazy this time of year.  Money doesn’t grow on trees.  I could go on and on and on.   But, honestly, is it really THAT bad? 

It probably isn’t.   

It’s so easy to be miserable.  I could fill pages and pages of things to be miserable about, but guess what, I don’t.  I try really hard to find the good in each day.  I try really hard to look forward to fun things coming up. 

It is easy being miserable, you want to know what isn’t easy?  Trying to stay happy surrounded by CONSTANT negativity. 

And that negativity is everywhere.  It’s everywhere!  Moaning and groaning about little things.  Imagine how you would do in a third world country?  Imagine what those people live with everyday?  I bet they aren’t posting about all the aches and pains on Facebook or Twitter.  I bet they deal and I bet they find reasons to appreciate what we are given on this Earth.  I’m not a Saint.  Things upset me, I vent.  There is a normal amount of misery every human encounters.  It’s normal.  What isn’t normal is consistent misery and anger.  Feeling entitled or deprived constantly.  That shouldn’t be the norm in the world today.  The norm should be all the happy people of the world. 

Misery should not be the new little black dress.

I have said things like this in other posts, but I do appreciate life.  I appreciate the fall colors.  I appreciate how beautiful Christmas lights look in the streets.  I appreciate high gas prices, because you know what?  Last year at this time, I didn’t have the van I have now.  I didn’t have gas prices to complain about.  I am much happier with my vehicle than without it.  I am THANKFUL for all I have. 

I am thankful for life.  Without it, we wouldn’t even be able to complain.  Imagine that all my fellow Scrooge and Grinch friends?  No complaining?  If that were the case, you may actually have to smile and be happy!  SCARY!

Please, try to be happier each day.  Positivity is contagious.  Unfortunately, so is negativity.  It is really hard to push through the day only hearing the bad.  Just a little effort will go a long way!   😉

xoxo,

Stacy

Debbie Downer Come Down From Your Pedestal.

Debbie Downer sits up high on her pedestal.  She can see above everyone.  She can see every mistake you make.  Anything you do is a mistake in her eyes.  Anything you dream is wrong.  Anything you hope for will never happen.  She knows everything, she does everything better than you can do.  She knows you will never go anywhere.  

She knows she is so much better than you.

If you have a child out-of-wedlock, you are automatically a loser.  If you didn’t go to college, you’re even more of a loser.  If you work beside her, you don’t do half as much work as she does.  If you are her neighbor, your life is dysfunctional.  If you are her friend, her opinions are the only ones that matters.  If you are her children, if you don’t do things her way, you will go nowhere in life. 

Wait, there’s more.

If you give up a child for adoption, you are a loser with no values.  If you are adopted, you aren’t a “real” member of your family.  If you file bankruptcy, you are cheap and could have paid your bills. If you collect from the State, you are a moron with no real ailment.  If you have State Insurance, it’s unfair that she has to pay for your bills.  If you’re wealthy, you probably had everything handed to you.  If your marriage fails, you have no class.  If you don’t bring in a lot of money, you must be on welfare.  Another loser.

Debbie Downer can make you feel like you are only an inch tall.  She talks and talks and talks until your heart starts to hurt.  You see, Debbie Downer does not care who she hurts with her words.  She doesn’t think before she speaks.  She has such a narrow mind, any idea that you throw out there is intercepted by her negative thoughts.  She cannot open her mind.  By not having an open mind, Debbie Downer is a very miserable person.

I feel sorry for her.

Debbie Downer could never have a heart filled with love.  She could never wish somebody luck without thinking something negative right in her next breath.  She really needs to realize that everyone around her does not look up to Debbie Downer. 

They look away from her.

It’s hard to talk to somebody who only believes in their opinions. 

 Why would your children come to you and talk about great news if you are only going to point out the bad?  They just want to be loved.

People who want their children to have a better life give them up for adoption.  That’s love.

People who are adopted grow up with their family.  That’s it.  Just their family.  Not their real or fake family.  Family is love.

Friends who may have job opportunities don’t want somebody to tell them all the reasons they won’t be hired.  They want to know all the qualities you love about them.  They want to know why they WILL be hired. 

Debbie Downer, please come back down from that pedestal.  Come back to reality.  Maybe after you accept us all for who we are, even if you don’t believe in our thoughts and opinions, maybe you will find some more positivity and love in your heart.

Who wouldn’t want to feel more love?  The only thing negativity does is bring you down and it brings down everybody around you.

Debbie Downer, love and be loved back.  You’ll love, love.  I promise.

xoxo,

Stacy

 

No Kids For The Night! Um, Now What?

It doesn’t happen often, but once in a great while my parents will keep ALL 3 of our kiddos for a night.  Usually we go away for the weekend, but this year it was different.  It all happened last-minute.  When everything was sorted out, we had a Saturday afternoon and night to ourselves.

We had no idea what to do.

It’s so easy with the kids home.  We can go home, play games, go to Chuck E Cheese, go apple picking, color, etc.  But, time for just us?  No diapers for a night?  We were actually lost. 

So, after about 20 minutes of, “I don’t know, what do you want to do?”  We ventured off to the city for dinner.   We went to a buffet and it was a beautiful thing.  We ate our food and it stayed hot.  We held hands, sat a table for 2 and took our time.

We missed the kids.  It was too peaceful!

We were right next to the mall, so hand in hand, we went mall walking.  We went into 2 stores.  That’s it!  Nothing interested us!  We walked out with nothing, but full bellies.  That only killed 30 minutes. 

Now what?

We went into a few more stores, ranted about rude people who don’t say thank you when you hold the door open for them and then headed back to town.  It was 6pm and we were contemplating going home and getting into our jammies, or even going to pick the kids up.

We decided to reach out to a few friends that we hadn’t seen in a while.  They were home!  Yippee!  Adult interaction! 

We were so excited!

Between the 4 of us, we couldnt’ think of anything to do.  So, we went to the grocery store, grabbed some pizza and headed back to their place for a few hours.  Just sitting there and gabbing with grown ups was so refreshing! 

Still though, we missed the kids!  The next morning, we were both so excited to have them back.  It’s amazing how much your life changes when you have children.  Nights out on the town mean something completely different now.  Life has meaning.  It’s a beautiful thing. 

Once in a while, my Fiance and I need a night for just us.  But, for the most part, I will take Candyland over Poker any day now.  I wouldn’t change it for the world. 

xoxo,

Stacy

Everybody Loves Love. Everybody Needs Love.

We were falling in love in this picture. 🙂

I had given up all hope of love.  I didn’t believe in it anymore.  In my opinion, all love came to a bitter end.  It was make-believe and we were taught as children to hold out hope for a fairy tale that would not be a case of happy ever after.  I was just a ray of sunshine.

I was incredibly jaded.

Married at 20, divorced at 25 was not how I pictured my fairy tale.  I envisioned growing old and gray with the love of my life, raising our children and having a happy, long life together.  I didn’t picture getting married because of a pregnancy.  We lived on separate floors for a few years.  Nobody knew these things on the outside.  From the outside, we were the all American family. 

The fighting, the games, everything had to end.  There was no way we could raise a little girl in that environment.  You hear people say, “we stay together for the kids.”  That is really no reason to stay together.  My daughter is so much happier now than she ever would have been, had she grown up listening to fighting and not seeing us be in love. 

She deserved better.

I left and I left quick.  I left behind the home that we purchased when I was only 19 years old.  It was a perfect little home with a white picket fence.  We had a golden retriever, a few cats.  That home held my life.  But, I looked down at my daughter who had become my life.  She deserved more.  She deserved so much more.

After a terrible divorce and custody battle, we put that phase behind us.  We went to a co-parenting, high-conflict course.  We put our daughter before anything else.  Of course we don’t agree on everything.  But, we can go places for her and we can chat like old friends.  There are no lingering romantic feelings between us.  It’s a friendship that evolves around our daughter.  I can honestly say I don’t miss anything about that relationship.  It wasn’t a love relationship.

I had to let go of the anger from the marriage and the divorce.  I held onto this for a while.  I was bitter, jaded, just so angry.  I never wanted to think of love.  I didn’t need love.  Love wasn’t real anyway.  The only love I believed was the love I had for my daughter.  I didn’t need any more than her.

And then I met him.  Him being my now Fiance.  I messaged him one day on MySpace (I wasn’t into the Facebook scene yet), just to say “hey how’s it going?”  We went to school together and I had seen him under the “friends you may know” part of the website.  It was small talk, “good, you?” “Lets get the kids together.”  A month or so passed after that conversation and I got a text. 

“Hey kid, do you get texts?” 

It was him.  From that point on, we texted constantly.  We were both feeling jaded, alone, never wanted to find love again.  We instantly bonded and become friends.  We never really spoke in high school, so it seemed so odd to be such good friends.  But, it happened.  And after the friendship happened, love happened.

We didn’t fight it.  We embraced it.  This was the love I dreamed of.  This was/is real love.  There was romance, real romance that I never had before.  He brought me flowers, he still does.  We laughed, we cried, we were inseparable. 

4 years, a step-daughter for both of us and two little boys later, we still have the same love we had in the beginning.   The only difference is the strength.  We are so strong together.  We still have the romance.  Most importantly, we still have the friendship.  We will be sitting together in our rocking chairs when we are older, probably beating each other with our canes.  (All love comes with some bickering!) 😉

Never, ever give up on love.  Everybody loves it.  Everybody needs it.  And it is the most amazing feeling in the world.

When you do find it, never let go.

xoxo,

Stacy