15
Sep

Five Minute Friday - support

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on support.
Go.

It actually means to bear the weight of something, to hold it up and enable it to function.
That's the actual definition of the word.
And that's our role, this entire time with you.
That's why the weight of family is so heavy because we are bearing your weight, we are holding you up.
We are your support.

It starts from day one, we can feel how heavy something, someone, so small is.
We felt it when you were pressed up against us, kicking your way into the world.
We felt it when you were here, and you would lay on our chest.
We felt it when we fed you, realizing how delicate you were, but at the same time, full of force.
We felt it with each milestone you had, the ones that made you more independent but still caused us work.
We felt it when you would propel forward, and we had to follow.
We are your support, here to bear your weight and hold you up.
We are your foundation, your rock.
We are your home-base.

Which is why, we too need support, now more than ever.
Because while we hold you up, we too need others to lean on.
We need comfort and someone that enables us to function.
We need support too.
Because we feel weighted down when we don't.
We no longer feel graceful, instead, we feel the heavy pressed on our chest.
Unable to breathe, unable to think, unable to function.
We need people who love and accept and propel us too.
We need comfort and the ability to unleash our crazy and someone that gets us.

We are always and will always be there for you.
We will keep you upright, we will ground you to rise.
And we thank and love our support systems for their comfort, their calm, their ability to carry us.

Stop.

1
Sep

Five Minute Friday - neighbor

Every Friday we unite for five minutes. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on neighbor.
Go.

How are we taking care of one another?
How are we lending a hand, an ear, a shoulder?
How are we listening?
How are we coming together?
How are we taking care of each other?
What do we do for our neighbor?

We build homes with fences to protect privacy.
We move into neighborhoods and hardly know those around us.
We build walls instead of welcoming those we live with in.
We wave across yards instead of opening doors.
We put up barricades instead of welcome signs.
How are we taking care of each other?
What do we do for our neighbor?

We look inward, careful to take care of those close to us.
We are untrusting, looking for motives.
We are ending gatherings, always too busy.
How are we taking care of each other?
What do we do for our neighbor?

We are quick to look away if it doesn't concern us.
We are quick to turn around, not look in the direction of someone in need.
We justify with statements like, that's not my concern, not my problem, not my decisions.
We forget all the help we received along the way, the priveledges we were afforded.
We forget that most parents make it because of community, and circles of trust.
How are we taking care of each other?
What do we do for our neighbor?

But the ripple effect is real.
And just as much as it can turn us in, the ripple effect can also create closeness and kindness.
Like how one person pays for another in a drive through line and the chain continues.
Like how one person helps a stranger and that love is carried on.
Like how we create love is contagious and so is community.
How are we taking care of each other?
What do we do for our neighbor?

If we want to build kindness and love and generosity in our kids, lead by example.
Let them catch you helping a stranger.
Let them see you feed someone in need.
Let them watch you talk someone up, not down.
Let them be a part of their community.
Teach them the importance of framily.
Show them love, not just for them, but for people.

It is time, we are at a pivotal point in our history and when you look back at this time of need and crisis, what will your story be?
Did you retrieve inward or did you open your heart?
Did you write a book of love or of fear and hate?
Now is our time, we are raising a generation, we are setting their path.
Remind them that it is up to all of us to take care of one another.
Be a good neighbor.

Stop.

28
Jul

Five Minute Friday - inspire

Every Friday we unite for five minutes to write on one word. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on inspire.
Go.

I find it in the quiet.
The time alone in the shower just the sound of water.
The time alone on a run, just the sound of my feet and the road.
I find it in the morning, just the dimmest light on and my thoughts, my work.
I find it on the rainy days that curl me up
I find it in a lit candle a moment of peace.
I find it when the noise stops around me, the noise in me too.

I find it when I write, when the words finally come.
The words I struggle to put together and the ones I want you to carry with you always.
I find it in my desire to keep you in the know of what this journey meant to me
how much these years with you changed me and how I will never be who I once was.

I found my inspiration for a forever, one full of happy, when you first smiled at me.
I found my inspiration to exhale and be as you made your way over to me.
I found my smile in yours.

I find it in love.
The love I am trying to spread the one I am learning to receive.
I find it the warmth and comfort we have created, the family I never knew I always wanted.

I find it at night when I peek in and see the rise and fall of your chest as you breathe.
I find it in the knowledge of the good we put forth that day
the love we shared.
I find it when you whisper to me from your dreams
the love letters you write directly to my heart.
I find it in your whispers.

I find it in beauty, in clean and in our home.
I no longer want a house but a warm and loving home.
I find it in the walls that have your eyes and smiles and laughter staring back.
I find it in the toys you love, the little that has exploded.
I find it in your childhood, my second chance.

It is in the quiet that I come alive
I find it in the stillness I need
the silence I desire.

Stop.

14
Jul

Five Minute Friday - comfort

Every Friday we unite for five minutes to write on one word. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on comfort.
Go.

I find comfort in the closeness.
In the love and projection of family.
I find it in the small and in the simple.
I find it in the whispers of love.
And I find it in you, the ones that gave me my second chance.
I find it in our traditions, big and small.
I find it when I can clearly see family time is important to you too.
And so, I created a life that celebrates our family and underlines the importance of us.
I created comfort.

I created second chances
I created little arms around my neck
I created little hands cradled in mine
I created time
I created comfort in us.

I created traditions
and I have so many of them.
Traditions are my parenting strength.
They are so important to me, but even better, they are so important to you.
You have no idea how much you fill my soul when you say "it's Friday...it's our family movie night!"
or as I am kissing you goodnight on a Saturday and you say, "tomorrow is pancake Sunday and we have a reading date!"
The smile and excitement that comes across your face.
The actual joy and comfort it brings you.
How much you look forward to all the small ways that we make you feel that this is important to us.
I created comfort in us.

And that's why I did this.
I wanted something that tied us together, even as you grow and want more and more independence.
I wanted something that made you feel that this time together is important to all of us, because we are important to all of us.
I wanted you to feel that this loved, in the smallest of ways, because you are loved from top to bottom.
I wanted something that reminded all of us how simple parenting is, how all they need is us, the rest is extra.
How little stress there is in this time, how loving it is to just be together.
How my worries melt.
How our childhood comes out.
How close we all get.
I wanted to define family for you,
in its purest form.
I created comfort in us.

I find comfort in the simple
in the love
in the gathering
in the close
in the second chances
in the quiet
in the cozy
I find comfort in us.

Stop.

14
Apr

Five Minute Friday - empty

Every Friday we unite for five minutes to write on one word. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on empty.

Go.

It's how the introverted mother ends her day.
It's how I feel at the hours you need me the most.
Which is unfortunate because when a person has nothing left to give there is no longer beauty.
There is only ugly words and feelings and everything is harsh.
When I am empty, I am without compassion
I am no longer loving
I cannot be kind.
Because continuing to run on empty cannot be sustained, something has to give.

And it's not you, it's me.
It's my too busy
it's my too many things
and it's my responsibility to find what fills.

And so, I started on my path to remember what fills me full
like the end of our day
like together
like our traditions
like our snuggles
like framily time
like dance parties
like when you whisper to me from your dreams
like my runs
and my breathing
like the love we all have.

The moments that empty, they will always be there.
Life is daunting
and tiring
but it doesn't always have to be so hard.
Hard is what I do best and it's time for me to find a new talent.
Because I want more in my life.
More of the things that fill my heart
like laughter
and hugs
and you
and us
and time.

Because I want more out of my life than moments that deplete.
I no longer want to pick just the things that take away.
I no longer want to live an empty life full of lists and accomplishments.
I no longer want to live an empty life full of busy but nothing real gets done.
I want more in my life than emptiness.

Stop.

17
Mar

Five Minute Friday - friend

Every Friday we unite for five minutes to write on one word. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on friend.
Go.

There are people you meet that come and go.
There are others that stay, others that make an impression,
the ones that touch your heart.

There are people that come into your life at the wrong time,
the timing is off and you cannot get along.
There are others that heard your need for them and arrived.

There are people who create circles that they call framily.
They are a part of your village, your tribe.
The ones that you can tell all your crazy to,
the ones that accept your crazy
laugh with you at your crazy
call you out on your crazy
tell you to wear that as a badge of honor.
There are people who become framily.

I was always lucky in friendship.
I always found a tight close circle
the ones I can count on
the ones that could count of me
the ones I could have fun with
the ones I could laugh at everything with
the ones that would hold my hand when it all crumbled.
I always found framily.

And the ones that owned my heart, were never after anything but a true connection.
As I got older, and kids were exhausting and my framily started to move away, there was a period when I just found myself, alone.
Unable to find that circle again and laugh again.
Always guarded.
Until luck found me again, and our circle grew again, and love found its way in, again.

This is the one place in my life I have led by example,
this is the one thing I do right...framily.
So follow me little faces.
See who I surround myself with, who I keep at an arms length.
See why.
See how I treat those that become a part of us
see how they treat us.
See the smile on our faces when we see each other
see the joy when we are around each other.
And find that.
Find genuine
find comfort
find talking until you can't stop
find silence
find good
find laughter
find real
find true
find love
don't stop until you find framily.

24
Feb

Five Minute Friday - slow

Every Friday we unite for five minutes to write on one word. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on slow.
Go.

Slow and deliberate.
On your own time.
Taking it all in, observing and then finding your own way.
These are the traits I hope you always hold on to, this is the real you.
Continue to find your own way
continue to be slow
make deliberate decisions
find your own pace.

Because I too am deliberate, I too overthink.
I too look at the situation from all angles and I too read a room.
I too connect with people, get them.
But in my life, I have learned to rush and be intense.
I have learned to run and win at racing about,
you are my reminder to relish in the slow.
This is who you are, my slow and deliberate girl.

Reckless and at times dangers.
Quick to jump in.
Never slowing down.
Always on the move.
Do first, think later.
All in, always all in.
These are the traits I hope you always hold on to, this is the real you.
Continue to burn down the path,
continue to not overthink, just do,
find your own pace.

Because your father was also reckless.
He too was always moving.
He too jumped right in, which is why he was able to walk right up to me and start talking like we knew each other always.
Which is why he is my balance.
Which is why we did a triathlon, even though I didn't know how to swim.
He is always challenging me, always connecting with people, always friendly and loving and all in.
But life has slowed him down and made him worry.
Fatherhood makes him see all the danger, all the things that could go wrong
But you are his reminder of fun, you are his challenge to bring him back to where he started.
This is who you are, my reckless little boy.

And you both are balance in our lives.
You remind us to ask all of the questions, to really think and process
and to jump, stop thinking, don't listen, and jump.
You remind us to enjoy our food slowly, savoring each wonderful bite
while also eating with your whole face, as fast as you can.
You remind us to slow down and pay attention to notice
while also run as fast and as hard as you can.

This is who you are.

Stop.

3
Feb

Five Minute Friday - BREATHE!

Every Friday we unite for five minutes to write on one word. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on BREATHE.
Go.

About two years ago, I started doing yoga.
Not as a work out routine, but as a practice.
And I learned to breathe.
I learned to pay close attention to how I breathe,
and to have my breath and movement be one.
I learned that my body can be uncomfortable, but not in pain.
I learned to push myself out of my comfort,
to trust in me,
to trust in my body,
even though it has let me down in the past
even though it fails me
even though a disease takes my body and movement from me
I learned to trust in that very body
because my breath would move me
my breath would make me strong
I learned to breathe.

I learned to close my eyes
to trust in time
I learned to let go of control but gain it back
I learned about me and what I am made of
I learned that I am capable
because I learned to breathe.

I learned, once again to redefine beauty.
Because I am not graceful
I do not look right
my body doesn't align and therefore everything looks wrong.
But, I have grace and patience, even with not being graceful.
And I have courage and love, even if it looks wrong.
Because I learned to breathe.

I learned in my practice that life is a lot like this.
That life makes you uncomfortable, but you can use your breath to guide you
you can use your breath to stop fighting yourself.
I learned that when life turns you upside down, you should go with it
I learned that in life, you should always breathe.

And although something each of us does naturally seems so silly to practice, the truth is
most of us spend our days holding our breath.
Most of us spend our time tense and tight and clinched.
Most of us spend our days tied to a list.
Most of us forget that we are capable of so much more.
Most of us forget to deeply, and with intention and purpose,
to breathe.

Yoga for me became a transformation of me.
A time for me to fall in love with me again
a time for me to accept my limitations and what my body is capable of and not
a time to remember that life has purpose and meaning
and it is not to cross off a to do
life has beauty and there is rhythm
and there is space when you make it
to breathe.

Because when I finally found my breath again
I found purpose
I found trust in me
I found love of me
I found me
every time I breathe.

Stop.

27
Jan

Five Minute Friday - control

Every Friday we unite for five minutes to write on one word. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on control.
Go.

This is my word.
This is my mission.
This is my calling, control.
The irony is that I left a home of control,
I left a home of feeling like I had no control,
and I took off.
What started as a stand that I was in charge and in control of me
quickly turned into an anthem of control of everything.
My life, theirs, the world, loss of control is so difficult for me.

And even though I met a person that allows me to feel as though I am in control, even though he is my partner in every way,
the more I want.
The more I fight for it.
The more I put on my fighting gloves and am in pain when I get knocked down from something out of my control.

This year, my new anthem is more.
And with that, I have to let go...more.
I have to let them go, more.
I have to let them decide, more.
I have to let them be, more.
I have to let them choose, more.
I have to let them figure out, more.
I have to let them conclude, more.

Because I am not in control of anything other than my reactions.
And I need to get a handle on those reactions, more.
I have to be their guide, their rock, more.
I have to be more of their joy.

Because the one thing I learned, the big lesson I took away,
was the more control you put on your kids, your life, your world, the more you are spun out of control.
The more the universe takes over.
The more your kids rebel and fight you, instead of turn toward you.
The more you lose, while trying to keep it all together.

And so, my little faces, it is time I give you the wheel and I turn some of the control over to you.
Because that clearly tells you that I don't just love you, but I trust you.
You've got this.

Stop.

20
Jan

Five Minute Friday - refine

Every Friday we unite for five minutes to write on one word. Only five minutes, that's all we get, that's all we have. And then, right where we are, no edits or second-thoughts, we publish those words. This week, we write on refine.
Go.

Small changes.
Remove the impurities and make a change for the better.
Baby steps to who you actually want to be
not what the stresses of life have made you.
Always start small because everything else is too overwhelming.
Start at the beginning.
With the two kids that didn't know any better but thought they knew it all.
And start at joy
and remembering joy
and what brought you joy
and why.

Purify your life and take out all of the vulgar
all of the coarse
all of the hard edges
and come back to the real you.

Because when you refine something
you make it better
you remove flaws
and you start living the life you want.
One with intention
one with purpose
one with love.

This year, my promise to my family was more.
More of me
more love
more joy
more reminders of joy
I promised them I would refine who I am
as their mother
as a partner
as a leader and role model
as their rock.
I would start with small changes in me so that our family can come back to soft.

Throughout your life, you grow, you change.
And those you chose to spend your time with, they should make you want to be a better person.
They should bring out the best in you.
They should push you to grow more, step out of comfort and at times leave happy behind to find greatness.
They should make you refine your life
in the smallest of ways.

Stop.

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