Showing posts with label relationship. Show all posts

Vacation Recap: Paradise at Paradisus Punta Cana

Hello everyone. I’ve been waiting to share this one for a while. It’s the recap of our trip to Paradisus Punta Cana! It’s been three years since we visited the Dominican Republic, three years since we stopped by Paradisus Palma Real (see that post here). This time, we invited my brother and sister in love and their spouses. Yep, S.’s brother and his wife and his sister and her husband joined us for a really beautiful trip, a couples’ vacation that we will definitely have to repeat in the future.

The lovely walk outside our room

Mental Heath/R&R Break

Hi guys! Thanks for checking in. We’re stepping away from the keyboard for some R&R. We may interrupt it here or there, but for the most part…SILENCE!

 Don’t worry! We’ll be back soon with all sorts of interesting shares including (but not limited to) back to school, FET plans, and life in general. In the meantime, we hope you all have a blessed day. 

Talk to you soon!


Proper Spouse Communications and Loving when You Don’t Even Feel Like Liking

Oooh, ya’ll! God just handed me all kinds of chastisement for a conversation I just finished having with S. It wasn’t a nice conversation filled with roses and love. Nope, this was a frenzied, whispered conversation with high octaves and impatient sighs. It was step outside the building. It was lower the volume and look around cube walls to make sure you are alone. It. Was. Bad. AND It was stupid. Seriously, it was the stupidest thing that I could have ever been concerned enough to argue about when I honestly didn’t even care. I could have stopped the conversation at any moment, but I’m a debater…and I’m stubborn…and I like people to see my point even if it isn’t always right. Ugh.

The subject of this one doesn’t even matter. At its core, the issue becomes communication. It was the result of a lack of communication that S. and I tend to display to one another unintentionally. I’m being candid because you all know I try and keep it completely earnest with you. The fact of the matter is listening more and talking less would have prevented me from sounding like a disgruntled nut on the phone. Seriously, guys. There is plenty of room for blame, but this one leans heavily on me. 

A Letter to my Husband on our Sixth Year Anniversary


Hello my heart,

What an amazing thing it was to wake up this morning and know that we are celebrating six years of marriage together.  I don't take that lightly as our marriage has truly been a journey.  We have walked together through so very much.  There have been these soaring high mountain experiences that took my very breath away.  There have been crushing valleys that left me sitting in parked cars praying for wisdom and direction.  There have been moments of pure passion as I see you walk into the room after a long day, crisp shirt and dress slacks looking ever so handsome.  Moments of absolutely beauty as I watch you play and giggle with our children.  I am so thankful to God for you.  I am thankful that you pray for our family and our children more than you pray for yourself.  I am thankful that you love God so very much and that there is never hesitation in prayer, especially if I call and say that I need you to do so.  I love you, your drive, your tenacity.  While I never pretend to understand every choice, every decision, every moment, I do trust that you make them with the best interest of our family in mind.  I trust that you love us, that you love me.  And I love you too.

It's been a year, my love.  We loved your mother, my mother in love together.  We made sure to address her needs as well as we possibly could.  You did so much more, being there every step of the way.  You are an amazing son.  When she went home to be with Jesus, it was your strength that aided the family.   This year we welcomed a new daughter into the family.  You were wonderful during labor.  You were there, by my side, encouraging me, pushing me, letting me know it would be okay.  When she was born, delivered, and placed in your arms, you looked at her and my heart melted all over again.  You are such an amazing father.

With you I have learned patience.  I have learned grace.  I have learned partnership and teamwork.  I have learned self reflection.  I have learned the importance of me time and the importance of quality time.

Today, I am thankful for six years and pray that God blesses our union and the ministry that is our marriage with many, many more years to come.  And if He chooses not to do that or if our journey goes astray, I will always love you and will always be thankful for you, my husband.

I love you.

Previous Anniversary Posts:

Our 2015 (3 year) Anniversary  | 2015 Anniversary Recap | Our 2016 (4 year) Anniversary |
Our 2016 (4 year) Anniversary Reflection | Our 2017 (5 year) Anniversary

Weekend Recap: Of Winds and Nights Out

Hi everyone.  This weekend was pretty power packed.  All week long, the meteorologists were predicting a pretty serious wind storm.  I was skeptical.  I mean, it wasn't a hurricane.  It was a wind event and really couldn't have been that bad. 

Weekend Recap: Birthday Behavior

Hello everyone!  I hope your week has been absolutely amazing!  Mine was rainy and cloudy and blah looking outside, but SO much fun and enjoyable for the family.  Sunday was S.'s birthday.  We decided that we would do a private date night on Saturday with just the two of us and then celebrate with the family on his actual birthday.


I had quite a few ideas of things we could do for S.'s birthday.  He's big on new experiences and I was all game for some small thrill events like hot air ballooning or indoor sky diving.  It turned out the weather was forecast to be too yucky for ballooning.  The nearest indoor skydiving facility was an hour and some change away and our childcare arrangements couldn't cope.  So, I was thinking...what do we do.

Fortunately for me, S. has had an interest in trying out the Escape Rooms that have been so popular in the area.  We looked on Groupon for any deals and sure enough there was a pretty good one for a couple wanting to do the adventure.  We purchased, called and made an appointment, and were booked for the same evening.

We arrived at the Escape Room and were very impressed.  The lobby by itself was awesome!  Because the attraction has such a shroud of secrecy, I won't share too much about it, but we were paired with two other couples to solve a buried treasure riddle.  Oh my goodness!  We had so much fun!  Unfortunately, we didn't figure out the last riddle in time though we were SOOOOOOO close!  UGH!  But it was still a great adventure.

Happy birthday!

Wishing my amazing, awesome, sexy, handsome, hard-working, good providing, God-loving, God worshipping, God-following, wrapped around his daughters' fingers, our son's buddy, my HUSBAND, my MAN...a VERY GREAT  BIRTHDAY!!!!

Love you, S.!

Midday Musings

"...Looking back now I think God saw that if I went too long without love that it would become increasingly difficult for me to submit to the authority of a husband after being set in my own ways."
-Tiff Hornton

I read this in a post this morning of a young woman in the public eye who is receiving backlash for re-marrying a couple of years after her husband died in a car accident. People were calling into question her love for her first husband and her need to move on. The entire post can be found here. I love the post she wrote, but the line that spoke to me the most was the one that I placed above. I was a single mom for several years. I also grew up in a household where fiercely independent and self-sufficient Godly women were my normal. They did it on their own without husbands in the household. They never threw shade to men, never disrespected the idea of marriage or of men, but they did it by themselves.

When I became pregnant and initially did it solo, I developed a “us against the World” mentality. It was my son and I against everything and everyone else. It became my norm. Everything was he and I. My rising. My fall. My thought process. My motivation. My reason for breathing became him and him alone. He kept me going. Literally. When I didn’t want to get up or move, he was the one who kept me up and running. Eventually it became an evident truth that I didn’t care if I ever got married. I was fine in the time and space that I was in. Yes, I was lonely at times, very lonely at times, but I was focused on raising my son and I couldn’t see any man understanding or making space in that. I mean every move I made was calculated to ensure that he had amazing experiences and an amazing life. It was easy to become stuck in my role of independence. I knew I could do it solo. My mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother all lived without the influence of a husband and raised their children. I felt sure I could too.

It's my anniversary

Hello everyone.  Today is my fifth wedding anniversary.  Wow.  That five years came quick and yet it feels like I've been married for so much longer.  There have been a host of good times in my marriage, and more than a few rocky, painful, and uncomfortable moments as well.  If I'm being honest, and I definitely try and keep it open and transparent with you all, there were times that I didn't know if my husband and I would see number five.

Weekend Recap: Date Night Revamped and Food, Glorious Food

Hello everyone and happy Monday!!  I hope you're having a great day wherever you are.  I'm determined this week is going to be amazing just because I'm claiming it as such.

Monday will be awesome.  This week will be awesome.  Claiming it!

Date Night!!

Oh my goodness! I’m so excited. I mean it. I’m adolescent preteen excited lol. Tonight, my husband and I are going on a date!
So, you may remember that S. and I found that we were having a lot of trouble communicating. Everything seemed to be about #ttc and then being intimate (not intercourse, but intimacy) just wasn’t happening. Holding hands, compliments, flirty looks, were all out the door. We were, quite honestly, in a not so great place. Frankly, it was a horrible place. While all marriages have their moments, it seemed like the frustration of not being able to conceive was weighing heavy on S. It isn’t lost on him (nor I) that sperm counts and morphology can have a pretty big impact on the male psyche especially when they aren’t doing what they are supposed to. I’ve never once cast blame or treated him harshly because of it. But I know it has to hurt his pride when he is the only married one in the family who hasn’t conceived a biological offspring. Add to that the confession of wishing to be able to increase the family by at least two and you know he is a bit distracted by this journey.

That’s why I’m so excited about this evening. Tonight, S. has booked a couples’ Swedish massage with aromatherapy followed by dinner for date night. We haven’t had a couple’s massage since April of last year. It was such an enjoyable experience and very relaxing. I hope this one will bring the same experiences. 
Have a wonderful evening and we’ll check in with you soon!

The Real

Hello everyone. I’m back again on cycle day 4. I was pretty bummed about Aunt Flo’s visit this time even though I knew it was a serious possibility. I have never had a cycle run as late as this one did and I was pretty annoyed by it, but it is what it is. This cycle has been pretty tame in comparison to others I’ve had. Still crampy and light to medium flow, but I am okay with it.

S. and I had a quick conversation yesterday about a longer conversation we need to have tonight. S. thinks it is time we go forward with attempting to lock on IVF financing. I would love to, but I think there are some other conversations we need to have first. As some of our #ttcsisters and #ttcmisters have shared in our beautiful #ttccommunity, trying to conceive can certainly take a toll on relationships. The fun and spontaneity of being intimate with your spouse or loved one becomes replaced with timed intercourse, basal temping, cervical mucus tracking, ovulation calendars, and more medical professionals than at a medical school. It can get overwhelming. Combine that with a cyclic interaction of grief every time a pregnancy test reveals a #BFN and it can be a bit much.

My husband and I both love each other very much. There isn’t a doubt in my mind of this. We are both also devoted to God’s path for us and our marriage, but we need to reconnect. We need more than to reconnect. We need to focus and build from scratch. I’ve recently felt like I’m pushing so hard to give him the experience of being a father from conception that I’m negating the experience of fatherhood he has received through interactions with our other two children. While he has been an active part of our son’s life since he was two (child from a previous relationship), I felt he missed out on the phase of newborn to one. While he has been there since the early weeks of our daughter’s placement with us to her bubbly toddler self today, I felt that he was robbed of pregnancy. That wasn’t or isn’t my assumption to make.

The truth is we love our family and every experience in it. We love being parents and we would love to be parents to more children one day. But, recently, in the space of trying and miscommunication to no communication, it’s been admittedly difficult. It is my personal belief that we need to stop for a while. We need to spend some time being S. and K. We need to spend some time being husband and wife. We need to spend some time being friends. Our being mommy and daddy will be even more enhanced just by that.

Admittedly, this conversation will be a hard one.  But it's needed.  I can't remember the last time things just flowed.  Everything seems to be strained and while that is part of any relationship, communicating is core to making it work.  Painful or not.  So, I'm praying God's grace and peace over our future conversations and decisions.

Anyone else getting back to basics before continuing on your journey?

His facade is slipping (the birthday episode)

I'm so sorry that I've been out of pocket!  The last couple of days have been very busy in our household.  S. recently celebrated a birthday.  I made sure to shower him with all of his favorites and his birthday wish list.  He wanted a special breakfast that morning.  Granted.  I made sure to capture his favorite fruit and have it available for lunch.  Granted.  I went to his favorite bakery and procured his favorite birthday cake...twice when the baker got the order incorrect...Granted.  I got his favorite ribs and his favorite over loaded sides.  Granted.  Much desired gifts were given.  I made sure that he received gifts that he both wanted and needed.  At the end of the evening, S. was very happy.

The very next day, our baby girl celebrated her birthday.  I made sure cupcakes were present at the daycare, gifts were ready to be opened when she returned, her birthday candles blown out on her birthday cake.  Later, after everyone was sleeping soundly, S. and I took advantage of it also being #ttc week for me and celebrated with each other with an impromptu in home date-night.
Yep, it is the week of ovulation.  Because my body does it's own thing, S. and I know only that it occurs this week and the suspected spike of actual ovulation days.  But my body (and my trusty app) has let me know that this week is go week.  And S. knew it.  S. has done everything possible to ensure conception.  He's raising my hips after we baby dance.  He's placing pillows and having me lie very still.  These are all things we've heard of before, even implemented occasionally, but now it seems hard wired into him.  Today, we were catching up on our favorite sports show and he had his hand resting on my stomach and would occasionally rub it to "talk to the baby".  I hope above hope that this is the month for us, but I do not want S. to be disappointed.

I would wonder why now does it seem so strong, so necessary, but I think I know.  I believe that birthday hit him.  It reminded him that we've been trying for a while and that he has still yet to conceive a child naturally with me.  Our beautiful children are amazing and wonderful.  There are no "step" anything in our family nor any other designation.  But, it does remain that our children are those conceived from a previous relationship and adoption respectively.  I would love for him to know the joy of being there from the very beginning, from the moment of conception, from the first heartbeat, and first inutero kick.  I'd love for him to know the joy of new and wonderful development stages.  I think this is what is driving him this week.

And I want it for him.  S. is an amazing father.  Amazing!  He is so kind, so sweet, so patient.  I would love to carry his child.  I just don't want to see the look of sadness in his eyes if it doesn't happen this month.  I think it will be a stronger blow than usual.  I truly think conception is his birthday wish.

Sigh.  So, what does that mean?  Well, for now, it means that I do the same as I always do.  We will continue to try and conceive.  We are still trying to do so naturally until we can afford an IVF cycle, which our RE believes if our best option to conceive.  I have said it before and will continue to say that I don't understand why our jobs allow for coverage of abortions, but refuse to cover the costs of infertility treatments.

Hope everyone is having a great evening.  I'll do better about keeping you apprised.  Talk to you soon.


Because he's such an amazing father...

I'm a few days late in posting.  My apologies.  It's been kind of stressful in our world.  S.'s mom was recently diagnosed with a terminal illness that required hospitalization and some very frank conversations.  S. was at the hospital and in the company of medical professionals more than he saw the inside of his home.  It's been very stressful to say the least.   But I admire so much the strength, grace, and faith in which he has handled everything.

He is the go to person in his family.  Both of his parents and all of his siblings depend on his clear head and God-given wisdom.  It is apparent in the way he carries himself that God is truly with him. I believe it is a comfort to his family just knowing he is there.  It also helps that our entire family's core is built on nothing less than faith, prayer, and obedience to God.  Still, our prayers have constant for healing and restoration.

This week, I've watched my husband play chauffeur, legal analyst, technical writer, and interpreter for all of the various tasks that fell to him.  He handled them well, though I saw the strain that others did not.  Tonight, my mother in law rest comfortably in bed at home, full of smiles and peace, released from the hospital with a plan of attack for the foreseeable future and things have, for all intents and purposes, returned to a semblance of normalcy.

This weekend, the normalcy was babysitting.  I came home from work yesterday to find the delightful joy of a house FULL of children.  My nephews (both preschoolers) and niece (elementary aged) were visiting for a sleepover.  Their parents had an out of town engagement and S. and I agreed to watch the kids for them. It's been a blast.  Our children are around the same ages as my niece and  nephews.  When the kids get together, it's nonstop action and a lot of squeals and peals of laughter.

One of the things that was so striking in this visit is witnessing S. interact with his nephews.  My husband really is a great father.  I don't tell him enough, hardly ever, but my goodness.  He's really good.  I mean.  I know that already.  He's been amazing with our children.  Our son, mine from a previous relationship, is truly his son in every way except biological.  And though our son's biological father is active and supportive in his life, our son reaps the benefits of having S., his bonus father, in his life as well.  The same is to be said about our daughter, whose adoption was only recently finalized.  S. is amazing with her.  It is like he was put on this earth to be a father.  He is patient beyond all fault, fair in discipline, and purposeful in his actions.  Even when I don't agree with some of the execution, I have to acknowledge that S. is really being a great dad.

But this weekend, he has been amazing.  He's kept them entertained with all sorts of creative games. He has given baths.  He's taught the little ones that they "can" do something when they believe that they are too little to do it by themselves.  He's made them laugh.  [And]  When they have been a bit too active, he's gently guided them to an appropriate level.  He has been awesome.

There is no wonder that I desire to see him continue being a great father to a child conceived during our marriage.  We both have a strong desire for more children--both through adoption and biologically.  It would be a wonderful blessing to see S. cut the cord for a child or see the heartbeat flutter on the screen of an ultrasound.

So, I'm thinking of having a conversation with S., after our guests return to their home, while we are able to spend a bit of time by ourselves.  I think I want to try another IUI.  I know.  I know.  The chances are slim with S.'s count, but I've been doing research.  There are things we can do naturally that may increase his sperm numbers.  The endocrinologist said there was nothing that he saw that readily explained S.'s low numbers and that it could have been that he was simply "past his prime". So, I'm thinking about getting some of the fertility vitamins I've been reading so much about and taking them as well as having S. take the complementary male vitamins.

Maybe the numbers will improve.  Maybe another IUI would work.  Maybe an IVF wouldn't be necessary.  Since, we're not in a position to do an IVF right now, an IUI would be a more easily attainable goal.  But do I try it especially with all that is going on right now.

There are a bunch of doctor appointments that S. will be attending over the next few weeks.  There will be a bunch of doctor appointments that I would like to accompany him and my mother in law to over the next few weeks.  Where would RE appointments fit in with all of that?  Could we do it?  Can we do it.

It appears it is time to have a discussion.  Let's see where this road leads us.  I'll check in with you guys later and let you know what we come up with.

Have a great evening.

Love, Live, Laugh--Date Night

Well, that was quick! In my 35 by 35 post, I mentioned that I would like to have monthly date nights with my husband. I haven't even mentioned this to him yet nor am I even certain he reads this blog, but God grants us the desires of our hearts. Last night, my husband and I had the opportunity to laugh out loud and be a bit carefree as we went to see Kevin Hart, one of our favorite comedian/actors perform.

Now, to know me is to know that I have a love of Kevin Hart. To know my husband is to know that he enjoys laughter (and magic). For his birthday (February), I surprised him with tickets to the Kevin Hart show which was coming to DC in August. I thought I’d purchased tickets for Friday only to realize rather quickly that I purchased them for Thursday instead. Not a big deal as I am certainly up for mid-week excursions. But I have to admit that, as I write this a day later, I am exhausted.

Why We Can't Sweat the Small Stuff...

Today was a day that threw me completely for a loop. I was creating a document at work when I stopped to check my personal email. The first email was from our church clerk announcing via email the passing of a church member. This particular church member is one of the sweetest, kindest, and most genuine persons I've ever met.  She and her husband have always been so loving towards me even when it was just my son and I.  The thing that shocked me the most was the fact that I just saw this woman on Sunday.  She was happy and looked so healthy.  She spoke pleasantly.  I hugged her.  She was fine.  Today, she is gone.  And I am shocked.

It's been with me the rest of this day,partly because FatherWinter and I recently had a disagreement that had me keeping to myself for a couple of days.  I purposely avoided conversation because I didn't feel like speaking.In hindsight, it was a very selfish way of thinking, but I didn't care.  I felt like I preferred to keep to myself instead of speaking to my husband.

Today, I was struck by the thought of what if God decided to call me home as quickly as He called this dear woman.  Wouldn't it be a shame to pass and the last moments I had with my husband were moments in an argument?  Life is so short.  We have no idea when our last breath will come.

I certainly hope that I am allowed to grow up and happy with my husband.  I hope we get to have grandchildren and great grandchildren and even great-great grandchildren. I want to travel more and smile more. I certainly hope God allows that.

Tonight,  I came home and sat with my husband, glad to see him, and said a prayer. My heart and prayers are with the husband and children of our lost friend.  But we know we will see her again.  I know she is in Heaven.  Wow, to see what she is seeing right now.  To have the fellowship she is having.  Wow.


Paradise at Paradisus

Hello everyone!

We're back.  FatherWinter and I just had an amazingly awesome trip in the beautiful Dominican Republic.  We spent 8 days and 7 nights celebrating our 3 year wedding anniversary and the great things that God has done for us on this journey.  The setting was the beautiful Paradisus Palma Real. Hands down, it was an amazing trip!

View from the lobby stairs

We arrived on a Saturday morning and, after receiving our bracelets, were immediately directed to the one of the restaurants to enjoy the buffet while they prepared our room.
Our all access pass for the week

Happy Anniversary!

It's our anniversary!!!
How blessed we are to see this day.
There is such an amazing journey in it.  Such love.  Such raw and earnest emotion.
Our every day hasn't been perfect.  That's what makes us genuine.
We've had to climb mountains.  We did it together.
We've had to walk in the lowest valleys.  You held me in your arms while we sobbed in unison.
We've had to learn how to speak...and how to listen.  
We've had to open our hearts ...and embrace our minds.
But the beauty in our journey remains
Our path has three distinct imprints--Yours, Mine, and Our Father in Heaven
We have sojourned together and together we always will.
I bless God for you now and always.
I love you!!
Happy Anniversary and may we be blessed with many, many more.

Early in our marriage, someone close to me told me that marriage isn't work and that the people who say it is go into marriage with unrealistic expectations.  I was taken aback because I certainly felt (feel) like marriage was work, not draining or unsatisfying, but work nonetheless.  In the course of time from that conversation to this day, I can assure you marriage IS work.

My husband and I have been married three years today.  Sometimes it feels like quite a few more and that's not a bad thing.  It's amazing to think that three years ago we were just beginning our journey into marriage.  We both came in with expectations of what marriage was going to be.  We'd had countless conversations and even attended premarital counseling.  Well before there was a ring or anything of a ring, we were attending Marriage Ministry classes.  So, we (well I) went in with the expectation that we, who both love God so much, would naturally fall into a perfect rhythm.  Not so much lol.

In our marriage, we have worked together  to embrace two different individuals with different experiences into one flesh.  We two individuals each possessed something so real and so important to God's plan that He allowed us to marry and work together to fulfill His purpose through us.  That's pretty deep.  In some things, it seems quite easy.  In others, it take a little more finesse. But we have continued to love one another and move together with God's guidance in our marriage.

We've faced infertility, two failed adoption matches, a court battle to keep and ultimately adopt our daughter, and the uniqueness of a blended family.  Still, every day I find another reason to love my husband even when our life experiences seem surrounded in darkness.  It is because of that love and God's grace and mercy, that we've been blessed with some really amazing memories and journeys.  

We purchased our first home.  We've managed to put smiles on the faces of my in laws with acts of kindness, love, and appreciation.  We've taken amazing trips.  We have seen the blessing of our son as he grows into his purpose and takes on the adventures of life.  We've been blessed with our daughter when there were times I felt like Hannah in our fertility journey.  We have survived medical scares and times of frustration.  We've had each other's back in ways that would take too long to write about. We've also been imperfect with one another.  We've been weak with one another.  We've been emotional with one another.  But we have remained in love with one another.  We've continued to pray for one another.  We continue to pray for one another.  We love one another as God has loved us.

Three years ago, I walked down a carpeted aisle holding my father's hand staring at this man of God who was ready to vow to me and in front of God to love me with all of him.  I saw this man, my husband to be, and was ready to vow to love him and support him with all of me until God called me home.  I meant that thang (as my girlfriend likes to say).  [And] I always will.

Love you, sweetness.


I walked down the aisle to Chrisette Michele's Golden on our wedding day.  I have loved this song from the first moment I heard it and thought it more than appropriate for us.  These are the lyrics.

Take me back in the day when loving was pure
Love ain't going away, love is always secure
Life's not always perfect but love's always forever
Let's let true love connect lets try lasting together

I'm so ready to love, I'm so ready to promise my all
I'm so ready to give 'til the day that my life is no more
I'll be everything that this woman can possibly be
Cause I'm ready to be like the olden days when commitment was golden

Be the man of my dreams and get down on one knee, love
Say you'll be all I need and then ask me to marry you, my love
Lets take two golden bands and lets walk down the isle, love
I'll say I do and you'll say I do, make a golden commitment, oh

I'm so ready to love, I'm so ready to promise my all
and I'm so ready to give 'til the day that my life is no more
I'll be everything that this woman could possibly be, yes I will
Cause I'm ready to be like the olden days when commitment was golden


For she who weeps...

We walk around like strangers
Barely speaking
Barely acknowledging the other's presence
Words spoken become discourse and we're both tired of that
I'm told we should pray
But I can never seem to get the words to come out anymore
I find myself adrift in a time and space further than ever I've been
This isn't what life is supposed to be
How do you wake up with such a yearning in your heart to love and be loved
To be happy and bring happiness 
Only to have it denied over and over again
Words get thrown around now that should never be uttered
The gift of language is both a blessing and a curse
My tongue has cut deep but so has the other
There's not even an attempt anymore
We simply walk away
Grin in public
Cry alone
The new routine
Always hoping for peace
For friendship
For love
We walk around like strangers.

Author's note:  I wrote this for a dear friend who is as much me as I am her.  We've shared so many counseling moments.  This poured from my soul.  For her. 

Because Daddy Has My Back...

My family is a family in every sense of the word.  We have good days and not so good days.  Days where we laugh so hard our tummies hurt and days where I cry so much my eyes swell.  It's the nature of life.  You experience the trials and tribulations of life so that you can appreciate and praise God for the great and wonderful things in life.  It's simple.  So many people take health and strength for granted until they can't get out of the bed one morning or are given a terminal diagnosis.  That is life.  So, I shouldn't have been so surprised when my dear Superbug decided to go outside his norm and act out.

Superbug rarely has bad days.  I can tell him to do something and he does it with a smile.  Even when he doesn't quite understand, he will ask about a decision in a respectful manner and then continue to get it done.  Usually.  This past weekend, I took Honeybee and Superbug for a visit to my hometown to spend time with my family and one of Superbug's siblings who will is relocating.  Superbug was very excited to go and couldn't wait to get there.

We packed everything up and started on our way.  However, during the trip we had to make a stop at the rest stop. Business done and ready to return to the road, I noticed that Superbug neglected to close his coat. It  was very, very cold and windy outside.  I asked Superbug to zip his coat to keep back the wind.  That request turned into a two minute discussion, with him speaking in a tone I do not allow, about how the jacket was already closed with velcro (despite clearly not being so) and he didn't want to zip it.  I finally dropped down and zipped his coat myself much to his 8 year old embarrassment and made him don his hood to walk out the door.  In the car we had a discussion about how the tone in which he spoke was inappropriate and not allowed and how a repeat would be cause for discipline. We continued conversing for a bit and I asked him a question.  "If your father had asked you to zip your coat, would you have zipped it on the first time?"  He answered in the affirmative.  That hurt.  I was angry.  I was disappointed.  I explained that it should not matter who gives him a direction--FatherWinter or I.  He needs to follow it because we are asking him to do something for his good. He said he understood and we continued on.  But I remembered the conversation.

Fast forward to his grandmother's home where he played with his sister for an hour outside...with no coat. Yep, he doffed the coat, went out the back door when I didn't see him, and when it was time to go, there he was without a coat in 30 degree weather and wind.  Sigh.  We went on to my aunt and uncle's home where he played with cousin, enjoyed a yummy home cooked meal, and got to be an eight year-old hanging out with his nine-year-old cousin.

Sunday morning, Superbug decided he wasn't too fond of my home church.  It is quite a bit smaller and less lively than the church he has attended where we live.  However, the word of God is the same universally and I was looking forward to receiving it.  Superbug decided to be..not so engaged.

Without going into specifics, the service ended and I was ready for us to return to our home.  I couldn't believe it.  I asked Superbug if something was wrong, if there was a reason he felt the need to act so unusual. He assured me nothing was.  I was left scratching my head and feeling particularly discouraged.

Once we got home, I sat down with Superbug and explained what was inappropriate, told him I would be discussing his actions with FatherWinter, and that he was subsequently on punishment for the remainder of this week.  We have Mommy-Son night's every month.  Because he was disrespecting the Mommy-Son relationship and couldn't seem to show respect, we were canceling Mommy Son night for this month.  It was supposed to be Friday and I was looking forward to taking him out for a night of bowling and talks over burgers and shakes.  Now, we won't have that as we don't reward bad behavior.

This morning, FatherWinter sat down with Honeybee, Superbug, and I for breakfast since it became a snow day for us.  After confirming that morning chores had been completed, FatherWinter asked Superbug how was his weekend.

Superbug was honest in his answer and shared that he could have been more respectful to me on the trip.  FatherWinter listened and then explained to Superbug in a kind, calm, and gentle voice that the bond a mother and child have is special.  He explained how moms sacrifice so much from the moment they find out they are pregnant.  He explained how they sacrifice sleep, have pain, gain weight, etc. just to make sure the child is born safely and healthy.  After birth, Moms continue to sacrifice to make sure the child has food, shelter, love.  He did a very great job explaining the bond.
He then told Superbug that it was very wrong of him to speak to me the way he had and to disrespect me the way he'd chosen to do.  He followed up bu asking if Superbug had apologized for his actions which Superbug had not.

FatherWinter was genuinely disappointed and upset at this and reminded Superbug, without raising his voice,that it was horrible to treat his mother that way when it is I who goes so often above and beyond to make sure he is taken care of.  He then told Superbug to clear his dirty dishes from the table and go to his room and think about what had occurred and he would be up later to continue the conversation.

After Superbug had left the table, I waited a bit and then thanked FatherWinter for chastising Superbug in such a way as it showed how important it was that he not be disrespectful to his mother. I recognize that I have been used to doing things solely on my own as a single mother and sometimes I forget that I don't have to do it all alone anymore.  It was truly a blessing to have someone else make it clear that such behavior was not acceptable.

Later, after having lengthy conversations with FatherWinter, Superbug came into the nursery where I was, apologized with downcast eyes, received a hug, and tons of love.  He has still lost out on Mommy Son night for the month, which had a two-fold purpose.  He is still without TV, games, and fun for the rest of the next two weeks, but I think he gets it and he has learned a lesson.

Disrespect and deliberate disobedience is never okay; and that his parents have each other's back.