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Parents & Teenagers & Unspoken Words

I worry. I worry consistently about my children. I know they don’t share everything with me. Probably not even half if I am guessing. I find it so strange, then I look back to confiding in my Mother. I guess for some, it just doesn’t happen. Even if we think we are close to them and we know it all, we don’t. We never will and this terrifies me.

I want to be there for them when they are sad, feeling broken, happy, maybe they have met someone new. It doesn’t always happen. I feel like I am pulling teeth and they are giving me a painful look when I ask them about their day, their friends, their relationships, anything. I feel hurt. Maybe I’m selfish? Selfish with wanting them to be happy 29 out of 30 days a month. I want to see them smile. I want to know they are okay.

Don’t get me wrong, I believe I have a strong relationship with all of my children. I know that they love me. They tell me they love me daily. Kiss me good-bye and good night evey day. I take great care of them in all of the “Motherly” ways. I just know there is more to it than that. More going on with them, than what they give me willingly.

I go to bed terrified at night when I haven’t seen one of them smile all day, or even make an effort to talk to me. I can’t stand the distance. Especially when I know something is wrong. I can see it in their eyes, their body stance, the way they hold their mouth. I have a right to feel terrified. I am their Mother and I feel noting but love for them and want to keep them safe in any way that I can.

Some humans don’t discuss what is on their mind, because they don’t want to feel like they are overly talking about themselves, being self-absorbed, complaining, or whining. Sometimes we do it because we don’t want someone to feel sorry for us, feel like we are a burden, or weak. I’m sure I could list a hundred more reasons why we don’t talk to others about our feelings, our thoughts, or what has happened recently in our lives that has made us feel off. Sad. Alone. Even miserable. We’ve all done it. What we forget is, we are not alone. There is always someone who will just listen. The problem is, we are afraid.  Don’t want to seem incapable of handling our emotions. Frankly, it sucks!

We need to talk, we need to express ourselves, we need to vent, we need to cry, we need to wallow, we need to work it out. If we don’t, then it sits in a deep pit. A dangerous pit that the only way out is to climb out of that damn pit yourself, or let someone help you. To grab onto their hand and let them pull you out.

Today I am in worry mode. I have been for several months now. We moved to a new State. It’s been 9 months. I don’t feel in my heart that anyone has really adjusted well. Especially my 4 teenagers. They miss their friends. They miss the ease of our old neighborhood. They miss their daily routine. I bet they even feel like life has been stagnate here, like not much has moved forward.

Sometimes in life you do things for your family, because you think it is the right thing for you all as a whole. California housing prices were sucking us in. Living to just pay for the house you are living in and the bills to keep that house alive, are just not a way to live. Children don’t know that though. They see a well-oiled machine and then their parents just threw a wrench into the engine and broke it.

I never realized it would take this long for them to adjust. To feel happy again. With social media today, I thought that it would be easier for them to keep in touch with their friends. Unfortunately, I believe it has been just as much as a hinderance. Especially with how things are today.

Social media started out as a way to keep in touch. Connect with friends and family and sometimes make new friends. Today it seems that it breaks more relationships than it keeps alive. Especially for our children. Posts and words are taken negatively, texts are misconstrued. Someone is always feeling defensive. People that are being honest are taken as liars. The liars are getting away with causing so much pain and the honest ones are the one’s suffering. Some suffering more than others. It truly breaks my heart.

I remember when we communicated a lot over email. Even our emails started to get taken the wrong way. We all know that 5 people can read the same email and if asked about that email, we would get 5 different interpretations. Imagine that with the short simple texts. It can be hell, I’m sure. It always seems when something is read these days it is deciphered depending on the readers current mood. It’s interesting and detrimental all at the same time. Especially with our teenagers. It scares the hell out of me.

It all dwindles down to the way we communicate with each other. I’m for sure a talker. I want to talk about everything. Know everything. I love honesty and truth. I love having a conversation of the heart. I always ask a lot of questions. I love to learn. I love having a conversation about the weather. I love having a conversation about the color of the dirt. I love hearing about your day. I love hearing about your successes for the day. I love hearing about the argument you had with your friend. I love hearing about what your plans are for the weekend. I love hearing about how your girlfriend pissed you off. I love hearing about how dumb you thought that kid was in your class today. I love hearing about what scares you. I love hearing about what made you angry today. I love hearing about your job. I love hearing about your dreams. I love hearing about it all and I just want to talk to my kids and Husband all day long.

I want them to need me. I want them to want to spend time with me. I want them to know how much I care about them. How much I want to listen to them when they are hurting. I am always here. Unfortunately, it doesn’t happen. Then I am back here hoping, wanting, poking, prodding and begging them to let me in.

I am their Mother, so I know they don’t want to tell me everything, but I would hope that they would let me in a little. Show me the honesty and sharing that I have taught them. Come to me when they are happy and when they are also feeling down. Let me help them. Give me a chance to tell them that there is always another wonderful road to explore, even though sometimes we take a wrong turn.

The unspoken words are the ones that worry me. No, they truly scare the hell out of me. xoxo

Exhausted Mother and it’s only 7:47 a.m.

Waking up my chilthe_secretdren is the least of my concerns in the morning. Wanting them to leave with a smile on their face is a whole different concern in itself. Maybe I shouldn’t say concern. Maybe it is more like a need that I have?

We all worry about our children’s happiness. Well, I hope as hell you do! I do. Every single moment that I look at them, I want a sign that they are happy. It’s in me and I can’t help myself.

When I hear negative words out of their mouthes, no matter the subject matter, see a sad face, eyes watering up, I worry. Plain and simple, it affects me.

Last night I downloaded an app that allows me to “pause” my children’s phones. It simply makes it so that they can only make, or receive, a phone call. All of the rest is paused, until I un-pause it.

After putting it on my oldest Sons phone, apparently it moved some of his apps all around and jumbled it a bit. He freaked out.

A little background on my oldest son. He is the sweetest kid you will ever meet. He is loving, sensitive, honest to a fault, highly intelligent, if you are a friend of his he super committed to that friendship. I could go on and on. Not because he is my Son, but because I like to see the beauty in everyone and I just think that he is just an all around amazing person. Period.

He is also happy, sad, outgoing, introverted, smart, skeptical, trusting and untrusting. Just to name a few. When he is in one of those pessimistic moods, all I want to do is hug him. Tell him to smile. Ask him to work on his happiness. Remind him that he is so loved and there is no reason for him to be angry or feel defensive.

He is my one that I tend to worry about the most. The one that I hope that I am not screwing him up in some way. The one that I want to take any pain away that I feel like he has in his heart, and just make it all better for him. I try, but I know deep in my heart that I can not.

He was bullied when he was younger. This already sensitive soul, was bullied verbally, and it has affected him deeply. To a point that now when sometimes you make a suggestion of something, point something out, ask him to change something, he is super defensive. To the point, that if you ask him to not wear his beanie to school today, he feels like I am picking on him. Even though, I point out that he is super gorgeous, because he is, and that I just thought that not wearing his beanie today, because it is going to be 83 degrees, would be a better idea.

I’m coming to find out, that I just need to let him be. Let him be who he is. Let him wear what he wants. To be his own person. Which, I think I have been pretty good about, but I am still his Mother and always want what I think is best. Even though, it isn’t what HE thinks is best. I am truly finding that balance.

Back to last night and the app that I installed on mine and their phones to “pause” them. When I gave him his phone back, and it looked a bit disheveled, he lost it. He cried, explained why he was upset and I felt terrible. He felt betrayed. He felt untrusted. He felt like one of his lifelines (his phone that he reads on every single day) was now not going to be the same. It broke my heart to hear his words and see how upset he was with me. When is Brother told him, “it’s just a phone”, he went into how lonely he is and how his social life is not like his (as in his Brother that he was talking too), that his life is through reading and the stories that he enjoys so much. It made me so sad, but it made total sense. Especially since I know that he is still hurting from losing his best friend a bit over a year ago. She was having her own personal issues and just cut their friendship off all at once and he still hasn’t recovered. He hurt him to his core.

I called him into the privacy of my room for us to chat. Explained what I was doing. That I wasn’t invading his privacy, that I trusted him with all of my being, that this was to simply pause them, when and if we needed too. Frankly, because there are times when I wish their computers and phones were gone. I feel like they are too highly used and an expansion of their lives. Too relied on. I also explained to him that I never meant to hurt his feelings, to make him feel like I would be betraying his privacy, that I trusted him and I never meant for him to lose any of his reading, or music, that I know he feels like are a lifeline and stress reliever for him.

Once we talked and looked over his phone, everything seemed to be there. I hope that he went to bed knowing that everything would be okay and that I loved him. I really did feel awful. Being a Mother is hard sometimes. Really hard other times and amazing the rest of the time.

This morning, after he thought money was missing from his wallet, because he thought I had given him $20 last week and the change wasn’t there this morning. I reminded him, that I had only given him a 5 or a 10 dollar bill and not a 20. That would explain why there was less in his wallet then he was thinking. Well, before I told him that, he had already gone down the wrong path. This is a good example of the hardship that he puts on his brain and his soul. He is now upset, clearly. The whole house can feel it. I put my hands on his shoulders and asked him to do something for me. Not only for me, but for himself. To go on a mission. A mission to only laugh, smile, think good thoughts, admire others, make positive comments, to make a change. To feel good. They say a change takes 3 months, right? That it is scientifically proven. Well, I told him that. I told him to see what happens when he does it, how he can watch his life change before him. He grunted. He’s 16. I’m a Mom that tries too hard. Ha! Well, at least I try. I try only out of love.

On our way to school I told him a little about myself when I was young. I told him that when I was somewhere between the ages of 8 and 10, I did ‘t like what I was seeing all around me. Arguing, infidelity, drug addicts, lying, fighting, all within my home with my parents and brothers. I didn’t want to be like that. I wanted to be happy. I wanted to have positive things in my life. I wanted to laugh, smile, hug, have fun and bring happiness to my life. I told him that I work hard at it every single day. It isn’t always easy, but there is no reason that I can’t keep trying and doing it for myself. It is what he need, or else we will down in all the crap. That I strive to be happy every day and I know that he can do it too.

What it all comes down to, is keeping my children safe, hoping that I can help them always be happy and helping them in anyway that I can. I would do anything for them. It doesn’t change the fact that I get sad too. I get sad when I feel like they are sad, or lonely. I feel it all.

My children are the loves of my life. 🙂

xoxo

P.S. Thoughts and comments would be appreciated here at the WordPress site, rather than on Facebook, or Google+.  Thank you!

What is my definition of success?

On to Day 2 of The Self Love Revolution series.

At the end of the video they asked… “What is your NEW definition of success where you can always win? OR, in times of binge eating, what are you really hungry for and what can you do to remedy that?”

Isabel Duke spoke a lot about binge eating.  I don’t have a problem there.  Thank goodness!  I do think that a have a problem with completing tasks for myself and not being a goal finisher with my own personal self.  Being that said, I’ve been trying to work on this.

What this consists of for me is… getting out the door for a walk, finishing tasks on my to-do list, cleaning the house, complaining that something doesn’t get done, but not doing it myself, doing the laundry, making appointments for myself, setting aside time for myself to blog, to paint, learn something new.  Stuff along those lines.

I like to think that I am already tackling this.  25 pounds down the past year. Setting up dates to hike with a friend. Taking ‘ukulele lessons once a week. Keeping my room cleaned up. Keeping my children on task with their chores. Crossing things off my to-do list in a more timely fashion.

What am I going to do to keep going? One foot in front of the other. Just do it, don’t wait. Don’t wait until later. Don’t push “snooze” when my to-do, or reminder, pops up on my phone. Get out the door. Pick-up the phone. Turn on the vacuum. Carry that laundry downstairs and get it going. Good stuff like that.

The big thing for me is though, to keep it up.  To keep doing these actions and moving forward each and every day.

I also wanted to talk about what I decided to do about Day 1. Day 1 was about me setting up 2 new daily “Rituals” for myself. Have I done that yet? Um, I don’t think so. Not in the way that I understood that I am supposed to. To set one up in the morning and then another in the evening.

The thing is, I think I already have established a pretty good routine of rituals for myself lately. In the morning, after I get the kids to school, I make myself a nice breakfast and I sit and just relax for a while and enjoy my breakfast. Be that on my computer cleaning out my e-mails. Checking on Facebook. Reading a news article on-line. Doing bills. No matter what it may be, it’s me time. After that, I move on to what I have in mind next.

In the evenings I have been plopping my fanny on the couch to get in some relaxation time.  Watching a show that I have on the DVR. If I’m not doing that, I have been getting my family to play a board game with me.  I also read in bed, or watch a show that I have on the DVR in my bedroom.

This is all acceptable to me. I think that I definitely find time for myself.

Some things that I would like to see change are… getting out for more walks and spending time with my Husband, and setting up more family time. Three things that I really miss.  🙂

xoxo

Missing The City

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FullSizeRender 9 “The City Bathed In Orange” Original Untouched Photograph by Kathleen Shelfer

Last night I attended a Birthday party on the Zinfandel Yacht out of the Alameda Harbor. It was fantastic! I never even fathomed that we would be going under the Bay Bridge and having the most amazing views of The City.

It was 6:30 p.m. and the sun was going down. We all boarded the yacht. With it being such a hot day, we went immediately up to the top deck to cool off and find a seat. As the Birthday Boy boarded the boat, we headed back downstairs to say our hello’s and Happy Birthday.  Big hugs too.

I don’t really want to get into then whole logistics of the party.  What I really want to talk about is the views of The City.  The memories it carries for me and how much I enjoyed remembering them last night.

As I watched the sunset over the Bay I realized what I was looking at.  The Bay Bridge with The City in the background. I was in awe.  Frozen to the amazing view.  I found an open window and just stared.

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I am still a little baffled at how to exactly explain how I was feeling.  I was happy. Excited. Calm. Just to name a few.  Even a little sad. I had memories flying through my head of the great times that I have had there.

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San Francisco is the first City that I had fallen in love with. It’s as pure and simple as that. I am so happy that I was able to experience the views of The City at night from the Bay again.  It had been too many years. The last time was with my friend, Taylor, one 4th of July when I was 27, or 28. What a night that was! Another story, for another day.  😉

xo

 

Brilliant!

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This really stuck with me today. It can’t express how I feel any better.  It also reminds me of what I need to do in my life. What I think about constantly, but don’t follow through with. That I need to just speak and not walk on eggshells. That I need to do more for myself and what makes me feel good.  

I want to thank, Rachael, a friend on Facebook. One of the very few friends that I have on Facebook, that I have never actually met in person. I adore your drive for life. For peace. For health. For education.  ♥

xo

A spotlight, or the Moon?

The second night in a row last night that I was woken up by a bright light over my bed.  Part of my roof is made of windows.

Sometime between 3 and 4:30 in the morning the Moon is so bright and shines on me like a spotlight.  It was so bright last night that I snapped a photo while it blared at me.  Of course the photo is not great, but you get the idea.

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It woke me up at 3:00, then again at 4:22 a.m.  The second time it woke me, I was having a crazy dream about being in the dark and looking for my house in the light.  Too strange to explain.

Let’s see if the Moon lets me sleep tonight.  🙂

xo

 

Painting

 

 

 

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Some days I really want to paint. Lately I haven’t.  Actually, not in several, several months.

I started painting, because I thought I would try another artistic outlet for myself since I am not good at any other artsy things. Every time I do paint, it is like I am learning all over again. It is different every time and I love it.  It relaxes me. Focuses me. Brings me calm.

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I have the images in my mind, but as that image goes through me and down my arm and out my hand with an art utensil of any kind, it usually looks like a kindergartener did it.  Seriously!

Some days I think of selling some of my paintings.  Well, the ones that I actually don’t hide in the closet, which is most of them.  I do show them to friends when asked. I mostly just give them to friends as gifts.  If someone likes one, it is usually going home under their arm.

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I do have a couple that I really liked, and those went to special people in my lives.  If they hate them, I guess they can hide them in their closet too.  LOL!

My Husband has had a request in for some time now of an Arizona stormy sunset. I have several photos, just haven’t tried it yet. I’ve never really taken the clouds on and they seem a bit intimidating.  I really need to do it just for him.

Sometimes I paint something, because it reminds me of someone.  Like sunflowers remind me of my Niece, Jennifer.

I thought that I would share some of my paintings today. They are all oil on canvas.  Some you may like and others you may not.  Same as me.  I am my own worst critic. 🙂

xo