25 Random Things That Parenthood, Age & Experience Have Taught Me

Parenthood, age and experience have taught me the best life lessons.  It doesn’t have to be perfect to be good. 

  1.  I can’t plan every little detail out. Instead I set attainable goals.  Life means sometimes my perfect planning will go ary. 
  2. I’ve lost my ability to whisper.  
  3. It’s easy to find Reislings to drink.  Oops I meant reasons.  I come from a long line of bad habits so I don’t keep it on hand.  I’d hate for my children to paint a picture of me holding a glass.  That’s not how I want them to remember me. 
  4. I like structure, order, neat and clean.  Now that I’m older I’ve realized my rigidity can cause severe eye twitching anxiety.  So I’ve created a chore board to get the kiddos engaged in helping me keep the house clean and I pay them well. 
  5. Secret signals fly over my head. I’m talkin’ I miss them like an idiot misses the point.  I don’t have time to play charades.  Just give it to me 
  6. Nature is one of the greatest healers.  
  7. Parenthood doesn’t come with a manual.  We all do the best we can with the knowledge and resources we have available to us.  Not a single one of us is a perfect parent. 
  8. I pray a lot. For everyone, even for the clients on my massage table.  Prayers of thanks and gratitude make me happy. 
  9. I love and appreciate my husband’s mind.  He’s got a big beautiful brain and a heart to match.  When you’re young, you take things like intelligence for granted.
  10. As long as I’m doing my absolute best at everything, I feel fulfilled and productive. 
  11. I admire all of the people that stay home to care for kids or work from home. I’m not one of them. I’m not strong enough to.  I believe that requires a special person with much self discipline.  
  12. Music is still one of the most powerful languages, escapes, motivators, and mood changers out there.  
  13. Being able to read nonverbal cues from others is a gift. 
  14. Although I love company, I crave to have my family alone. 
  15.  I really could survive in the wild out of the contents of my purse for at least a week.
  16. Time goes by so much faster the older you get. 
  17. Depression can happen to anyone. 
  18. Don’t collect things.  Collect love. 
  19. I now understand what my mother meant when she said “Now I know why some animals eat their young.”
  20. There are fallacies in using work as an escape. 
  21. The stresses of balancing family, kids, work, school and spouses are real.  Just because it seems under control doesn’t mean it is. 
  22. A minimalist lifestyle is so much more appealing the older I get.  Seems like shedding years of weighted clutter is much more fulfilling than filling blank walls.
  23. Your sense of smell never lets you forget anything. 
  24. Children manipulate you way faster than you could ever manipulate them. 
  25. Life is too short to leave important words unsaid. 

I’d love to hear random tidbits from you

Letting Nature Heal. Pedernales Falls State Park.
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The Silent Women: Have You Fallen Silent?

It was an exceptionally busy week for me. I had a great time at work and had some very interesting conversations. This week got me thinking about the silent thoughts we have as wives and mothers, and perhaps women in general.  I wanted to bring attention to women, depression, and marriage ruts that are so easily fallen into.  I wondered if we are all silent wives.  I wondered if we all fall silent.

While our children sleep peacefully we fall asleep praying for them. Silently begging and pleading for them to always be well, thanking God for every last second with them. While our husband’s or partners are at work we manage to maintain a job, home, kids and everything else that comes our way. We silently ignore our own needs to ensure that everyone else’s are met and satisfied first.
While our parents find activities to occupy their retired time, we silently weep and take in the bittersweet beauty of watching someone we thought was invincible get older and celebrate the great moments we’ve had with them.
While people mistake our kindness for weakness and sacrifices for stupidity, we lay awake at night silently hoping that everything we’ve done is right and worth it.
While some of us wander through life completely oblivious to the battles and sacrifices we make, taking life in stride. We stand silently enduring the struggles of depression, carrying with us the secrets of our partners indiscretions, the burdens we feel of not being able to communicate the weight on our shoulders.
We, the silent women bear the weight of smiling to make it through another day without letting anyone know what we’re really feeling. We, the silent women maintain our composure while our other halves work ridiculously long hours because keeping up with the Joneses has taken over our lives. We don’t mention the pressures of staying fit and looking well for our other half while they take for granted the effort and time it takes to shave our legs, wax our unmentionable parts, manage a home, take care of children, work and muster the energy to be intimate.
We cry quietly on the inside waiting for someone who knows us well to recognize the fact that we’re exhausted, That we can’t make excuses for an absent spouse anymore.

We silently endure in our relationships what others would call abuse or negligence of a spouse in order to fulfill our promises to our children and other halves and avoid anything or anyone that may rock the boat we’re on.
We quietly accept to take on even more responsibilities as our children join more and more sports and activities; as our spouses request more of our support so that they can further their education or take that promotion.
We smile and downplay the severity of our emotional distress so that it appears to just have been a rough day although if you leave us alone we weep on our way to work as an outlet for the stress we feel.
We quietly carry on with the strength of a 550 horse powered vehicle, quietly but with much ferocity, humming through the streets not ever letting anyone know what’s really under the hood.
We, the silent stand humbly awaiting a moment as rare as a Sasquatch sighting, for someone to ask us ‘is there anything I can do for you?’
To all of the silent women out there, please know that I pray for you all on a nightly basis. I pray for you to speak up, to know that is okay for you to ask for help, I pray for strength and courage for you, I pray that you make yourself a priority. I pray for you ladies. I pray that you take a moment for yourself and that when you do, you can rest at ease knowing that I’ve heard some of your silent cries, that some of you have come to me to let go, and I’m happy to listen and continue to pray for you.

Have you ever felt like you’ve fallen silent?

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Rebel Without A Cause

 

Wild Woman

Have you ever felt like a rebel without a cause?  I’m talking, “I am woman hear me roar” rebellious.  More and more I’m finding myself to be more rebellious the older I get.  I’m not sure what’s happening here.  I’m finding that I’m challenging things that have been placed in front of me, questioning authority, pushing myself a little harder and not backing down for the sake of argument anymore.  I suppose it isn’t rebellion so much as growing up.  Although, most of the time it feels as though I’m rebelling.  Maybe, finding my voice; is a better choice of words.  I’m sure many would argue that, that has never been a problem for me.  I will agree that there was a point in my life where I had no filter on my mouth. There was no censoring of what I was feeling. I’m not sure why that stopped. Some would say that I matured, some that motherhood changed me.  Maybe it was a little of both. I remember at one point feeling that there was no use in stating what I felt because it fell on deaf ears.  Now, I feel like I should say it, whatever it is, for my own sanity; for the sake of not bottling things up, for the reason that I don’t want to return to feeling that what I say falls on deaf ears.  I’m not afraid of arguing anymore.  I’m not afraid to fight anymore.
I think of my grandmother a lot when I think about how my life is changing, about how I’m changing. I think about her wild spirit and how my grandfather always tried to tame her, to tame it.  Is this what happens with age?  With maturity?  We end up reverting back to the freest version of ourselves?  I should hope so.
Prayer of an Anonymous Abbess:

Lord, thou knowest better than myself that I am growing older and will soon be old. Keep me from becoming too talkative, and especially from the unfortunate habit of thinking that I must say something on every subject and at every opportunity.
Release me from the idea that I must straighten out other peoples’ affairs. With my immense treasure of experience and wisdom, it seems a pity not to let everybody partake of it. But thou knowest, Lord, that in the end I will need a few friends.
Keep me from the recital of endless details; give me wings to get to the point.

Grant me the patience to listen to the complaints of others; help me to endure them with charity. But seal my lips on my own aches and pains — they increase with the increasing years and my inclination to recount them is also increasing.

I will not ask thee for improved memory, only for a little more humility and less self-assurance when my own memory doesn’t agree with that of others. Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I may be wrong.

Keep me reasonably gentle. I do not have the ambition to become a saint — it is so hard to live with some of them — but a harsh old person is one of the devil’s masterpieces.

Make me sympathetic without being sentimental, helpful but not bossy. Let me discover merits where I had not expected them, and talents in people whom I had not thought to possess any. And, Lord, give me the grace to tell them so.

Amen

by  Margot Benary-Isbert

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A Day In The Life Of Monica

Funny story: Yesterday I ate a piece of cake that was sitting out on our community table at work. I asked everyone in the break room if it belonged to anyone. I was told no. That everyone had gone next door and picked up goodies for everyone to share and it must be out and up for grabs. Like the girl I am I opted for the sliver of chocolate decadence. I swear within a few seconds of devouring it a co worker walks in and is visibly upset. When I asked what was wrong she asked if I’d seen a piece of chocolate cake on the table. Although my first instinct was to want the earth to open up and swallow me whole, I said “yes, I just finished eating it. I’m sorry, I asked if it belonged to anyone and I was told no.” Just then, I was informed my client had arrived and I left the room. 

My Doomsday Chocolate Decadence

AWKWARD!

As I left for the day I was telling my husband and friend what I had done. As they laughed with mass hysteria and teased me they said “this is why I love you!”

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Freaky Friday 


Don’t you just love the way men think? I wish I’d been blessed with a one track mind that solves everything with sex.  Unfortunately, I came out an over analytical, neurotic, Type A, worry wart whose last concern is with sex when it comes to problem solving. 

This is an ode to my husband, who finds the best way to get to the root of a problem and find resolution is through sex.  I don’t know how he does it! He’s able to find the humor and perfect timing to make his pitch for sex at any God given moment. He’s slick about it too. His come hither eyes seem to be turned on as he so eloquently makes his case. That’s a gift ladies! A true marksman that never misses his target. 

How is it he was given this gift of charismatic charm that works in his favor every time? I feel like I’m so far behind him on this subject.  For example, Today, he came home from work, our little one had a bit of a rough day. As I was explaining all the things that had gone awry today he says to me, with full confidence in his voice and his playful yet understanding tone “You know, it’s Friday the 13th today. Maybe we should join her and let ‘Freaky Friday’ work it’s devilishness on us. That way she’s not the only one afraid of things going thump in the night.”

I started cracking up. I could’ve died laughing. He was serious too. He made his plea for sex. He’ll get it too. He always does.  

There are days when I feel I’ve lost my sense of humor and then he comes at me with his sexual innuendos and all worry dissolves bringing me back down to Earth. He’s right, I’m just being mom.

So to my dearest,  I’m sorry it feels likes this for you. 

      

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Toddlers: Untamed Hearts

I’ve been told many times that my life should be recorded, or that I should do stand up comedy. Hardy-har-har. Probably because the joke’s always on me right? So, I’ve mentioned a few times that both of my girls have my wild untamed heart. It’s true. They’re both wild in their own ways as am I. But my little one, oh boy is she giving me a run for my money. You know, I haven’t quite figured out why I’m being punished. 

My mom tells me I was a good girl. Excellent in fact. I ate everything she made me, even told her what a great cook she was, I spoke in clear complete sentences by the time I was a year old. I took my naps, I was early to rise and early to go to bed. My kindergarten teacher Mrs. Stephenson told my mom I was the best napper in class. I was a bit of an over achiever if you ask me. 

My little one on the other hand is on a mission from God (I believe this to be true with all my heart) to allow me the opportunity to test my better judgement or just straight up see if I can live the rest of my life in martyrdom. 
Anyway, we were out buying some scratch off lottery tickets a few weeks ago. It was a warm Texas day. I was wearing my green cropped muumuu. So it wasn’t an ankle grazing one but cut to the length of the knees. My little one has had a love-hate thing going on with Disney’s Frozen. On this particular day she was loving it. She was singing and swaying the back of my dress from side to side as we waited in line. Despite my many pleads to get her to stop playing with my dress, she continued to ignore my requests and sing. As I got to the counter and I finished paying she was simultaneously ending her rendition of Queen Elsa singing Let it go; Coming to a close while belting out “The cold never bothered me anyway” she made her grand finale by lifting my dress over her head and shoulders exposing my granny panties to everyone waiting in line behind me. 


This would’ve been livable if I had great legs or nice rump. In my mind it should’ve played out like the woman pictured above. 
Instead, as I swatted my hand onto my dress to clamp it down and hide my granny panties, whilst speaking through gritted teeth and telling her we were leaving. I turned to face this. 

The cashier stood frozen, hand covering her mouth and the woman in line behind me shut her eyes and began nodding her head side to side keeping her lips tucked into a tight line where she was fighting off the laughter that was threatening to bust out if she took one look at me. 

I quickly bustled towards the door with my little one close behind and as I reached up to push it open my little one had taken a few steps back into the convenience store to eyeball some hotdogs and announce she was now hungry. I had no choice but to look back and face the people I was so desperately trying to leave behind. 

All I could see was the line of people behind me staring and laughing hysterically. Thanks Pumpkin. Nothing on earth is quite as exciting or humbling as being your mom. 

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Beautifully Imperfect

I’m writing this today because tomorrow isn’t guaranteed.  Mario, read it as is!

Dear Friends and Family, I’m writing my own eulogy today because I want you to know that this day should be a celebration of my life.  I want to journal what I want to be said.  I don’t want anyone of you to be sad, or mad.  Like Winston Churchill said

I am ready to meet my Maker. Whether my Maker is prepared for the great ordeal of meeting me is another matter.

To my sugar bug (Lizard): When you were born I vowed I was going to spend the rest of my life teaching you what life was about.  As luck would have it, it was you that taught me more.  I never dreamt  that what felt like a hefty 9 pound sack of  potatoes was capable of turning my life around.  That’s right my love.  You were 9 pounds of pure perfection.  Don’t get me wrong, you literally tore me a new one the day you were born.  Nonetheless, I forgave you for that.  Although I had to keep reminding myself that you were a blessing every time I sat down to pee and just FYI, I didn’t poop for two weeks because I was afraid it’d be worse than pushing you through my birth canal.  Sugar, I want you to celebrate our lives together.  I want you to remember all of the moments we shared and all of the lessons I taught you.

When you were 5 years old, I asked you to clean your room.  I walked by to check on your status and I saw you kicking your toys under the bed.  Seeing that just chapped my ass.  I thought to myself: what an ungrateful child I’ve created.  So angrily, I walked into your room with a large black lawn trash bag and I made you dig every little toy out and we pieced them all together and put them into their boxes and bags.  When you asked me what we were doing, I told you we were donating your toys to the less fortunate.  I told you never to ask me to buy you another toy again because you had no idea how hard I’d worked to give you everything only to have you kick my sweat under your bed.  I stuck to my word, we donated your toys and I never bought you another.  You were allowed books, crafts and movies.  I know it seems cruel.  I was angry and I was going to teach you a lesson you wouldn’t forget.  And you know what?  You learned.  About a year later you were visiting Mamita and Papito for a week in Cotulla.  When you met the next door neighbor’s daughter Lupita, you called me and asked me to pick you up.  I picked you up and when we got home you packed up the vast majority of your clothes,toys and dress up clothes that you’d collected from birthday and holiday gifts.  You gave them to Lupita.  I remember asking you if you were sure about what you were doing.  You said to me “Mom, if I don’t give this stuff to her, she’ll never have it.”                                                                               I knew at that precise moment your golden heart was way bigger than I’d ever imagined.                                                     I want you to remember that you taught me to be a bigger, better person, a better mother.

Emma (Punkin): Dear God, I knew I was getting two handfuls when I had you.  You were feisty even in the womb.  I remember when you had your first “boyfriend” Jeremy.  You two were inseparable.  Well at least up until he puked in front of you.  You were on a play date with ‘Pa , Jeremy and Jeremy’s grandma.  As you two strolled along hugging each other Jeremy suddenly threw up.  As Jeremy stood there crying and his grandma frantically tried to clean him up and calm him, you turned to ‘Pa and said while pinching your nose, “Eew. That smells!! ‘Pa take me home.  Bye Jeremy.”   My little Miss My way or the highway.  In a world where you can be anything.  Be kind, especially to your daddy and sister!

Mario, my love.  I will come back to haunt you like a raging poltergeist you’ve yet to see in one of your favorite scary movies if you don’t take care of yourself or the girls.  I don’t want you to be alone.  I want you to remarry if you find someone worthy of the blissful love you’ve given me.  Make sure you warn her that you’re kind of a pain and she’s gonna have to ride your ass like sea biscuit because let’s face it dear, that’s how I rolled.  By the way, if the girls don’t like her pay attention to that.  They’re telling you something.  And if they won’t tell you they don’t like her, I will 😈.

In all honesty, I really would like you to find a companion.  One that’s willing to wipe your ass if I’m not there to do it.  You may not return to an old flame.  Don’t be desperate.  She was a fucking twat waffle.  Besides, I’ll make your life fucking miserable even from beyond he grave.  I will not let you love them, because they couldn’t love you like you deserve.  Viejas panochudas!

My dad will probably still be around and she has to be willing to put up with all of you, as the family you are.

She has to have my strength Mario. She’s going to need it and so are you. You guys are a tough crowd. 😘 I’ll always love you. You were my everything.

“There was too much inside us. Maybe it was love or maybe it was something else. We had a light, a brilliance we tried so hard to ignore and all our faults had little significance to the story we were not willing to let go.”

Excerpt From: Robert M. Drake. “Beautiful Chaos.” Lulu.com, 2015. iBooks.

Remember to tell the girls all of the good, bad and the ugly about me, you know I always loved hearing you make fun of me with my double standards. Example: “Mario, we have to buckle down, we have to stop making these late runs to sonic!”

You: “Monica, you just said you were starving.”                                                                                                                           Me: “I really am hungry. I’m not talking about right now. But, yes in the future, stop me. Why are you going along with me?  Stop cooperating with me.”                                                                                                                                         You: “You said you were starving!”                                                                                                                                                     Me: “I’ll say anything for snacks. You have to know when I’m lying or not.  But, yes I really am hungry right now.  Not starving anymore, but I was when we left the house.”                                                                                                           You: mimicking me in a whiny voice “I’m starving. Let’s go to sonic!”

Remind them, like they can’t already tell that I was beautifully imperfect.  That my voice carried, I had a sailors mouth, I was always feisty, neurotic most of the time, extremely over analytical, high strung, total type A, sarcastic, brutally honest. Remind them that in all my craziness I was also very happy, considerate, caring, helpful, nurturing, a pretty good cook if I do say so myself, loving, funny, adventurous, and sympathetic.  Tell them all of the things I was, good and bad.  Keep me fresh in their minds.  And keep me fresh in my mothers and sisters minds too! I will not tolerate any of this moving in on my man shit! Babe, I’ll allow you to elaborate on this if you want.      Anyone tries anything funny and I’ll make sure all of you shit your pants. That’s a promise bitches!

“With open eyes, I see the world.  With an open heart I see the souls.  and with an open mind I see it all differently.”

Excerpt From: Robert M. Drake. “Beautiful Chaos.” Lulu.com, 2015. iBooks.

I will always be with you all as long as you keep my memory alive in your hearts.

“You will be the clouds and I will be the sky.  You will be the ocean and I will be the shore.  You will be the trees and I will be the wind.  You will be the stars and I will be the moon.  You will be the sunset and I will be the horizon.  Whatever we are, you and I will always, always collide.”

Excerpt From: Robert M. Drake. “Beautiful Chaos.” Lulu.com, 2015. iBooks.

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The Ties That Bind

I’ve been wondering what direction my blog is taking.  It seems to touch on many subjects.  I like to think its multifaceted kind of like myself.

Lately, my focus has been on the great powers we hold as women.  I always say to my female clients l that we were built to last, to endure.  I find the things we’re capable of fascinating.  Have you ever met another creation as divine and diverse as a woman?

We are hunters and gatherers for our families. We work both inside and outside of the home.  We are just as much the protectors of our assets as men.  We are the encourage the fallen, we are guides to the proper path, we are fighters for the weak.  We are all multifaceted, with layers upon layers of experiences and ideas and creative thinking. We are the home.

The vast majority of us are nurturers by nature.  We are the ties that bind families and friends together.  We are capable of generating life, giving light in times of darkness, lifting and carrying the heaviest of burdens.  All while doing what needs to get done in order to keep everything and everyone functioning like well oiled machines.  We are sisters, friends, mothers, daughters, lovers and partners.  We’re movers, shakers, adventurers and memory makers.

We are women, hear us roar!
My final thought; I think we should strive to bind closer together. We can be pretty harsh with each other sometimes. We’re sisters, fighting the same battles, the same devils on different levels.

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