Welcome to My Corner of the World

I hope you find humor, inspiration and something worthwhile on this blog. I plan to be as candid as possible. Life is hard. I know, I've overcome a lot (and still have a way to go).
It doesn't help others if the rough things are glossed over.

I will no doubt fill this blog with stories of my achievements as a mom as well as my personal struggles.

I have an incredible husband whom I call "my sanity." I have two great kids with strong personalities. I struggle with anxiety and depression and I have had a colorful childhood.

I also have an addiction to Gilmore Girls, A&W Cream Soda, and Starbucks peppermint mocha.
I have recently added biking to my list of hobbies and also love to read, knit, and play tennis.

Welcome to my little corner of the world!

Monday, November 25, 2013


  I know how blessed I am to have my husband in my life, but every once in a while a moment will come along that makes my heart smile and I think to myself "that's the man I married!"
  Yesterday the Hubby had the lesson at Church and he spoke about thankfulness.  One of the points he brought out made me think about my blog post a few posts back.
  The Hubby was talking about the children of Israel complaining, even though God always provided for them.  The began to lose perspective until they actually wished they were slaves again just so they could eat different food!
  How ridiculous does that sound?  
  Then I thought about my post and how I talked about how simple life seemed 10 years ago.
  Talk about putting things into perspective!

  As I mentioned, I have been doing a lot over the past 5 years to improve my emotional health.  Something that 10 years ago was very unstable.
  I've been able to recognize my growth over the years.  There are times I  lose perspective and question what I'm really doing.  But I've been able to bounce back to reality more and more quickly over the years.
  Now I'm even able to see positive change in my journal entries.  Instead of seeming to be hopeless, a bit lost, and pessimistic, they now have hope, direction, and show an underlying optimist!
  The funny thing about me looking back on my past and being tempted to think "man, life was easier when I was [enter age here]" is that my life has never been easy.  This isn't a pity party, and I'm not saying my life was miserable.  I am saying that every age I can think of was met with some challenge at some point.
  Now that I'm adult, the focus of those challenges has shifted from being about me to being about my kids and my family.

  So the positive take away?  This time it's very simple:  I'm becoming an even more well-adjusted adult than I could ever have imagined.  Yay!


Thursday, November 21, 2013

Tough Call

  I've been babysitting for a while now.  I've been blessed so far and have had some kids who really fit well with my family and our routine and whose parents I enjoy working with.  All the kids I've worked with are great kids.  Some are easy going, some are challenging, some fall in between.  Even the challenging ones I've been able to connect with, if even just a little bit.
  I'm currently keeping one who I am having to say good-bye to.  There are hundreds of times in a day where I think "this is So hard! I can't keep him anymore."  And other times through out the day when I think "Man, I could really help this kid."
  The truth is that I really could help him.  All the strategies I've employed with A over the years are perfect for this little boy (whom I will call IV).  This morning I had IV and Bug.  I was about ready to pull my hair out.  But I took Bug to school and for the past hour and a half it's just been me and IV.  We've done really well.
  I haven't had to physically restrain him (which I have done at least once every day this week). He's had a few behaviors, but I've been able to work with him and help him through them.  We've been able to connect and he's calmed down lots.
  This totally could work.
  The problem? The Hubby and I have made the decision to home school A.  If IV was the only kiddo I had during the day (no other babysitting kids and none of my own), I'd be able to help him immensely.  
  But he's not.  Home schooling is the best thing for my family right now.  Not keeping IV is also in my family's best interest.
  So, as much as a part of me hates to, there's a bigger part of me that is able to see the bigger picture.  
  This instance has shed some insight to my own childhood.  I've often wondered over the years how in the world my mom was able to keep me.   Why didn't someone along the way see how she took care of me and call child services?  Why didn't some teacher step in and try to help?  Of all the adults who passed through my life, why did no one do anything?
  Then I have to deal with this situation.  It's made me realize that perhaps there were several people in my life as I was growing up who desperately wanted to help me and/or Mom, but for whatever reason, they were unable to.
  As much as I don't want to, I understand my family has to come first.  Being an adult is hard.
  So, I will do what I can while I have this precious soul in my care, and then I will pray that he will be able to make the best of the life he's been given.

  Again, I like to end my entries on a positive note.  While this one kind of has "sad" written all over it, I have been able to see that (at least for now) I would Love to (and be pretty good at it, to boot!) work with kiddos like this.  Perhaps at Karyn Purvis's camp for kids.  Perhaps just through babysitting.  Perhaps as a consultant of sorts.  Who knows what will be available for me in 15 years?


Thursday, November 14, 2013

Parenting--takin' it to the next level

  I have been changing and maturing over the years.  I have done lots of self work, have sought therapists and professionals to help me overcome my emotional struggles, I have ended toxic friendships and nurtured positive relationships.  I have grown as a Christian, a wife, a mother, and a daughter.
  Over the past few days I have discovered that I am entering another level of parenting I never knew existed.
  As I have discussed on this blog, I am constantly looking for ways to help my kids. I take A to counseling appointments, psychiatrist appointments, I  read books about childhood anxiety, I have set a strict (for me) routine for our days so she doesn't feel overwhelmed.  I have become an expert on SPD, building my relationship with A, and loving her in the way She needs to be loved (instead of the way I think she should be shown love).
  I make sure Bug is allowed to be a boy.  I try hard not to cringe when he makes a disgusting mess.  I let him have the opportunity to run, jump, and rough house.  The Hubby and I have done what it takes to make sure Bug gets to go to preschool.  I push him out of his comfort zone within reason.  I do my best to make sure he knows it's OK for boys to cry.
  I have endured some uncomfortable counseling appointments in order to be a better mother, wife, and person.

  So what else could there possibly be to parenting?
  I've been getting bogged down lately with all the negative things going on in my life.  I keep thinking back to when I was in high school and how simple life seemed then (in hindsight, of course.  In reality, I was stressed out then and handling things much worse than I do now!).
  The more I thought, the more I realized that it's this parenting gig that's hard.  I see friends on facebook who are single parents and are trying their hardest just to survive life.  Their lives are not what they would have envisioned for themselves, and yet here they are.  Struggling.  Plodding along.  Doing their best for their kids, so those children may have a better chance of living the life they want.
  Everyone says a parent's life changes when her child is born.
  Of course my life changed when we had A.  I had a precious child who was dependent on me for everything.

  Now, however, I'm discovering that I'm no longer living my life for me.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not blurring the line between where A stops and I begin.  I'm not pushing my fears and dreams on to her (or Bug for that matter).
  My life is no longer necessarily about what Alexis wants to do.  It's about weighing what is best for my entire family.  I don't feel that I've necessarily been selfish up to this point in my life, but I do feel that my perspective needed some tweaking.
  The choices I make now impact me and my children (and my husband, too).
  I can make bad choices and I can reap the negative consequences.  I also leave my kids with that bad example to reference as they grow up.
  Or, I can make good choices, and A and Bug can have that positive influence guiding their thoughts as they go throughout life.
  Of course no one is perfect and over the span of my life I will make some poor choices.  However, I pray that my soul will be humble and willing to do what it takes to make things right in the sight of those around me, as well as in the sight of God.

  Looking at parenting and life from that perspective makes me smile.  Sure it's hard, but my kids, my life, and our souls are worth it!
  So instead of focusing on how hard life is right now, I think I'm gonna look at what an amazing person I have become because I'm a parent!