15
Apr

Finally grateful

What I once took for granted, I have found gratitude.
What I once saw as a burden, I now see as a gift.
In my year of different, I have found a way to be thankful for my life.

Thankful for things like
each night, we get a couple of hours of "us" time before we head to bed
on Sunday mornings, she would crawl into bed and read while we still sleep off the exhaustion
the kids are so healthy that they get to be crazy and drive us crazy
we still hold hands, still touch toes, after all these years
we have really amazing three day weekends
I am good at my job
we have friends that have become framily
snow days
family movie nights
slow Sundays
I sometimes get to steal 30 minutes alone in a coffee shop while my daughter is at piano practice
I sometimes get to spend that time with my son
vacations and not making school lunches
we make little getaways special and fun filled
a tired Pearl after a good day of play
finally learning how to ask for help
a handy husband that pours all of him into our house turned home
great classes at our inexpensive gym
traditions and making time stand still for just a few moments
coffee dates with good friends
hosting holidays in our new home

What I once saw as the wash and repeat, I now stop to recognize as special.
What I once felt was boring, I now see as time slowing down.
What I once carried as a heavyweight, I now see as my life, unfolding and I am putting my baggage away.
I am finding the room, the time, space, to reflect and be grateful for all I asked for and received.
This is my life and I am all in.

13
Apr

Five Minute Friday - other

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 other.
Go.

I have options.
I stood at this place in my life
a place of blue and hardship and I took a step back.
I looked at things from afar, tried to give myself some space and distance and I quickly saw two lanes, two roads.
I had to pick...one or the other.

One path looked foggy and had lots of obstacles and trees down, things in my way.
But it also looked so familiar, almost comforting because I knew every twist and turn.
This path has been all of me, I have built a life on this road.
I can see the younger me fighting for a way out.
I see all the things I put in my own way.
I see my home, my family, it's calling me to come back.

The other looked clear, it had more sunshine but was also brand new to me.
Newly paved, new trees planted, new life.
But all the same, new, and not at all familiar.
There was no same old same old on this path,
nothing for me to fall back on because I always fall back on old faithful.

I had a choice to make and it was time I treated that choice like a gift and not a burrden.
I am lucky enough to have options and choices in my life.
I am lucky enough to be afforded that space but I had to pick, one or the other.

Was I going to go down the path that was full of fog, steeped in it, so difficult to see but also so familiar that I could navigate it in my sleep?
Fog or no fog, this path knew me and I knew it.
Or would I choose to move through the new, the shiny, the sun, the light, the fresh air, the full of life but still...the other?
After almost forty years on this earth, where would I go, how would I live?

I stood at the crossroads
longing for things to be different and realizing that means I have to be different.
I was ready, no longer wanting to dip just my toe
I was ready and in my year of different,
I was ready for the new, the unfamiliar, I was ready for the other path.
And so, I took my first step in.

Stop.

9
Mar

Five Minute Friday - tired

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 tired.
Go.

I have MS.
I was diagnosed when I was 23 and yesterday was my 16 year anniversary of getting the call that confirmed my fears.
It has been 16 years.
I can't even say they have been long years
because we have been "lucky".
We caught it early
we got on meds right away
I have setbacks here and there but all in all, we are so "lucky".
Fatigue is my biggest challenge, I am so damn tired.
Mom tired.
CEO tired.
Starting a business tired.
Having a disease that makes me tired tired.

Yesterday was also International Women's Day, is that a coincidence?
A day to celebrate our strength, our grit, our determination.
So let me start by saying I wasn't "lucky".
This is my year of different so let me say, I am good at this.
I fight this.
I battle this.
I look at it in the mirror every day and I tell it to go to hell.
I caught it early because I knew something was wrong.
I advocated for me when they told me nothing was wrong.
I fought for all the tests.
I called every day to find out if there was a cancellation for the MRI, I refused to wait the 5-month time frame.
I got on meds early because I didn't mess around.
People were good to me and opened doors for me because I connect with those that I care about, and people wanted to help me.
I cried in his face telling him I can't do needles anymore, he looked at me and reminded me that I'm strong.
I took the meds every day. I fought and battled all the side effects.
I had the flu every week for three solid years not because I was lucky, but because I was strong.
I had bruises all over my arms and legs for 2 years not because I was lucky, but because I was strong.
I had 2-hour treatments once a month not because I was lucky, but because I was strong.
I lost my hair for 9 months not because I was lucky, but because I was strong.
I did get tired of it, I did want to quit, but I kept going, not because I was lucky, but because I was strong.
I fight fatigue, a tired I cannot explain, not because I am lucky, but because I am strong.
It isn't a silent disease to me, I look at it, I worry about it, I connect symptoms and I battle on.

I did what so many women do, I told tired that it doesn't have a chance here today and I womaned up!

2
Mar

Five minute Friday - regret

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 regret.
Go.

We all have many, don't we?
I regret yelling at you
I regret my response
I regret my reaction
I regret how I let you get to me
I regret that decision
I regret.

But what if for today, because it is my year of different, I talk about all of the things I don't regret.

Like meeting you
like how much we loved Mia
like becoming your mom
like saying yes to this life
like how you pour yourself into our home
like how much I pour into all of us
like how much effort I put into being a good mom
like how much you see for their future
like running that marathon, all by myself
like learning how to swim so I can compete in tris
like becoming a CEO
like starting my own business
like how you took a chance on you for once
like how much I love working
like how hard I work on myself
like how good of a friend I am
like how kind and amazing you are and how everyone is attracted to you as a person
like how loyal I am
like how good I am at traditions
like how good you are with their activities
like how I won't allow us to ever stand still
like how you won't allow us to ever walk away

There are many decisions I regret
there are many things words actions I would take back
there are lots of do-overs I wish I had
but this is my year of different and I am using all I know to change to grow.
And there is so much I wouldn't take back.

Like how in one week is the anniversary of you asking me to take on forever with you
I will never regret saying yes
Like how much we just love them
I will never regret deciding to bring them into our lives and the love we have built.
Like who we spend our time with
I will never regret who we love, what we all mean to one another, what it has done for our soul.
Like how much we care about
I will never regret the fact that we are good to people, good to those we love, good to those we know need a gentle heart.

There is so much of this life I do not regret.

23
Feb

Five Minute Friday - beauty

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 beauty.
Go.

There is a lot in this world that can only be described as ugly.
Hurtful words, messages, language, actions.
There are so many examples of things we can point to and say they are just plain ugly.

There were so many times in my life that I felt ugly.
I felt like I was never good enough, strong enough, reaching a level of beauty.
And then I had you and it stopped.

Not only because it had to stop, but also because you made it stop.
You, sweet, amazing and gorgeous daughter of mine, you changed me.
You were and are my connection to beauty.

And it started as soon as I could tell that my words were being heard.
I stopped comparing my waist,
I stopped looking at my belly
I stopped wishing I could look different
and I started on health.

I started working out because it feels good for my body
I started saying thank you when you told me you liked what I was wearing
I started telling you that my scars were a part of our story and I love them because they brought me my family
I started looking at myself differently
I started looking at you, really looking at you
and how could I look at something that gorgeous that came from me and not think there is so much beauty in the world?
You were and are my connection to beauty.

Because you changed everything.
You brought me motherhood
and the day you looked at me and our connection clicked is the day that I realized what the word beauty and gorgeous means.
It has to do with connection
it has to do with love
it has to do with the kind of deep and connected love that wakes you up, lifts fogs.
You were and are my connection to beauty.

There is still so much of this world that is ugly
there is still so much that is wrong, there will always be.
Because everything in life has balance.
You can't really enjoy how gorgeous things are if you don't have the ugly to compare them to.
That is how this life goes.
But even in the ugliest of times, the human connection can be seen and it is so gorgeous.
I will forever remind you to look there, to be comforted by the fact that beauty will live on and on.
You were and are my connection to beauty.

Stop.

18
Feb

Humor me

You know that I and milestones are not exactly best friends.
You know that the kids hitting a new phase of them breaks me a little.
I try and be strong
I put on a brave smile
I, of course, am thrilled for them...
but for you dear husband, you have to humor me.
You have to be the one to watch me crumble a little.
You have to be the one to pull me up, you have to listen to it because I cannot put that burden on them.
I know it does not mean or feel the same for you, but you have to humor me.

Traditions are our foundation.
I love them
you love them
you ask for them
you are disappointed if we have to change them (you look for how to rearrange it).
Traditions have become exactly what I had hoped.
But, there will come a day when you will want to go out instead of pile on the couch and watch a movie.
There will come a day when seeing friends will rank higher.
There will come a day when a sleepover keeps you from pancake Sunday
or when studying for a test will mean you can't make family dinner on Sunday night.
And when the nights start adding up and up and up and our time is more and more limited
I will ask you to humor me dear little ones.
I will ask you to please put it aside, please stay tonight.
Our family needs this right now, so find your way back to our foundation and humor your mom.

You know that with my intense and overwhelming love comes what can only be defined as crazy.
You know with my loyalty comes my emotions.
You know with my protection comes my fears.
So humor this mother of yours because she humored you too.
Humor your bride because you promised her she could rely on you.
She knows she is too much, she knows she is all in, she knows she is all consuming.

But, that is what real love is don't you know.
It's all consuming and crazy and overwhelming.
It's beautiful and awing
it's wonderful
and this woman who never thought motherhood would be her story is in awe.
She is in love
she is trying just like all mothers and fathers do
and she needs to be humored.

So, when I am singing as loud as possible in the car, humor me.
When I am dancing in the morning and insisting on a family dance party, humor me.
When I tell you we are going out for ice cream dinner and you feel you're too old for that stuff, humor me.
When I am crying because he/she/both of them are doing something new, humor me.
When they are far away and I can't remember how hard some of the years were, humor me.
When I insist on that last kiss good-night, even if your body is tall and lanky, humor me.
When I ask for a little guy smooch from you at 16 Monkey, humor me.
When I tell you I carry your heart on your wedding day Bella, humor me.
Because this mother and bride and person in your life, she needs to be humored.

2
Feb

Five Minute Friday - agree

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 agree.

Go.

You need me to be more present,
I agree with you.
You need me to reverse roles for a while and be the joy,
I agree with you.
You need me to be a happier mom,
I agree.

When you spend every day of your growing-up years fighting and proving someone wrong, I agree does not come naturally as an adult.
You still have that instinct to fight.
You still have that need to be right.
You hear I agree and think lose vs win.
Even though I thought I had put down my fighting gloves a long time ago, turns out I came out of retirement for a few more rounds and I want to be done.

Because creating a family and a life with someone is the most courageous and gorgeous thing I have done.
And I surrender.
To a life a peace and calm.
To a happy family.
To one that has a mom and brides that listens, is in-tune with needs
and agrees.

So you need me to spend time with you and I agree.
You need me to put things away and exist with you, I agree.
We need to spend more time as a couple and I agree.
You need more and less from me and I agree.
You need me to come up with all of the traditions and I agree.
You need more hugs and I agree.

Stop.

31
Dec

Yesterday's over

"So let's start another story tonight..."

It has been a wild ride these past few weeks turned into months.
Things have been a blur.
Luckily, the organizer in me got all of our holiday obligations out of the way in November
so December has kept me grounded and present with our family.
I adore having December be a time of calm and love
traditions that make me feel full instead of the hustle and bustle.
But work has been, wow, just wow.

Which has led to tears
and tantrums
and exhaustion
and stress
and tired
and lack of patience
and so much anger
and resentment
and lack of time
and loss of love
and blackness
and blue
and empty.

"Let's start another story tonight..."

One in which I find a gracious loving heart
which is the way a family should be living together.
Words should not be biting
patience should not be gone before we all come together.
Love should be at the forefront of our hearts.

I have set on a path to be different in 2018 because I have lost my hum and I need to find joy again.

"And it still feels like, like the very first time, saw the world like a kid
Yesterday is over, let's write another story tonight."

I write a lot about how our lives are stories.
Books that we get to write a new page each and every day.
So many of my pages have been mixed up, so many times I have felt I don't have control of my pen
but the truth is, I am the only one holding it.
I am writing this story and I determine my ending.
So as I sat in on so many doctor appointments this week fighting back tears when asked simple questions like
"how are you?"
"any pain?"
"how is work?"
"any new symptoms we need to talk about?"
and then statements like
"I think it's clear to you that you have to stop"
"eventually you will be sick"
"I don't think this is anything other than you are ruining your life"
"so in summary, you are too stressed, need to change things immediately and get yourself back on track"

2017 didn't bring about the more I was looking for.
I didn't fulfill my word, I wasn't locked in.
In order to have things be different, I need to make actual changes, things cannot be the same.
I cannot continue down this path.
It's time Sabrina, it's been time for a while now, but honestly, you have to make a change.

"And it still feels like, like the very first time, saw the world like a kid
Yesterday is over, let's write another story tonight."

I also write about my second chance at childhood
and getting to see the world like a kid
for the very first time.
I, and I alone am allowing that time to vanish.
I am letting it slip through my fingers.
I, and I alone am allowing myself to be tied to things that don't matter.

Because in the end, the only thing that matters is time.
How I decide to spend it
who I decide to spend it with
what I no longer allow to take up my time
obligations I still will have
ones I will let go.

"I saw the world from the hill,
let's write another story tonight
I saw the world like a kid,
let's write another story, write another story tonight"

15
Dec

Five Minute Friday - different

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 different.
Go.

I am looking forward to the new year
I think I always do
I see it as an opportunity
a chance to change
a chance to be different and act differently
a chance to make a difference.

And so, I started thinking and planning and really outlining how I want my life to look.
The changes I absolutely have to make
how I am on constant repeat
how I am responsible for most of the noise.
I started reading about how healthier, happier calmer people live.
What they hold on to, what they hold close, what they don't allow near them.

And so, I have started my list, my plans (which is very like me) and one of the things I am going to do differently is to use how I do things to my advantage, and no longer feel badly about them.
No longer feel less than but proud of my style and use it to work for me, not against me.

The first change, how I eat.
When I get stressed, tired, overwhelmed, one of the first things to go is eating.
I forget to eat, I run out of time, I get home and am starved because I have been depleted.
I am going to eat differently, create a healthy routine and eat more often.
I am going to work to find out what foods bring me energy, what foods bring me pleasure, what foods keep me going.

The second change, I am going to upgrade my tools and my life.
I always put me last and end up sacrificing so much time because I can just deal with it.
Everyone needs something when you are a parent and so things like your computer, your bags, your shoes, your suits, your stuff take a back seat.
I am going to go through my home and office and find the time crunches and I am going to upgrade my life.

Third, gratitude.
I am going to physically write down what I am thankful for.
I am going to focus on the good and joy of my day, the happy.
I am going to spend days/weeks/months not complaining.
I am going to help my family through this process and remind each of us, how lucky we are.

Fourth, the positive argument.
I am going to stop being resentful of "all I do" and I am going to make lists of things that others do for me too.
I am going to remember that my priorities, my desires do not match anyone around me, that does not mean they do less, they focus on different things.
Things that are not important to me, but are still needed.
Whenever I feel resentful, I am going to sit down and make the positive argument for those that I love.

Fifth, self-care.
I am going to focus on my quiet time.
Meditate
do yoga
find space
journal
write and pay attention to my blog.
Grab a cup of coffee alone
buy a shirt I want
buy a candle
make small changes to my own self-care.

Sixth, forgiveness.
Of myself.
Forgive my mistakes
do not stop breathing because I made them.
Do not feel them in my toes and make me shake.
Make an effort on focusing on the change I need to make next time and putting it to bed.
That means I have to face the mistake head to head
I have to really concentrate on my part, take responsibility and move on.

Seventh, connections.
I have close friends all over the place and I will make a concentrated effort to connect more.
With them
and my family
and my person.

Eighth learning more about me.
What is working
what needs changes
what about me can work to my advantage
what motivates me
what are my strengths/weaknesses
what can I use to move me forward?
How can I use that with all the people I encounter during my day
can I read them quickly too and figure out what makes them work and accept them for who they are?

Ninth pride.
I will write down and feel full of my accomplishments.
They are not random
they are not by chance.
I work hard, I will continue to find ways to work smart
but I sacrifice a lot to get to my goals and I will acknowledge them.
I am running two businesses
I am a mom of two
I own a house that we renovated and are turning into a home
I run long difficult races
I do triathlons
I run half marathons
I train alone
I volunteer
I take care of my community
I write a blog for my second chance at childhood
I document their childhood
I protect childhood, fiercely
I love my kids and connect with them
I set traditions that are their foundation
I show love
I should be proud of myself and stop the self-ridicule.

Tenth, a gracious and loving heart.
This one I stole from a friend that reminded me that all marriages should start and end on this note.
Your person puts up with your crazy and your lazy as much as you put up with theirs.
There is so much they are forgiving without an apology
so much they are letting go
so much they are trying to let roll off their back,
you have to have a graious heart sometimes and do the same.
You took them as is
you will grow together
the trick is growing in the same direction
growing with love
growing with a gracious loving heart.

Different, I am working on me this upcoming year and I am working to make things different for my life, my heart, and my soul.

27
Aug

He's the one

He's the one you call for.
He's the one that signs you up for all of your stuff.
He's the one that gets you ready every. single. morning.
He's also the one that tackles night time routines.
He's the one you love two claps.
He's the one you look like.
He's the one that worries most about you.

He's the one that asked me out.
He's the one that got down on one knee to ask me to join him in forever.
He's the one that puts up with my crazy.
He's the one that has embraced my family's crazy.
He's the one that worries the least about us.

He's the one that sets schedules for you.
He's the one you spend your summer with.
He's the one that plans our vacations.
He's the one that plans our days.
He's the one that loves adventure.
He's the one that needs big breaks.

He's the one that celebrates your milestones.
He's the one that is never sad anything is over.
He's the one that loves your first and your last everything.
He's the one that asked for you, he's the one that realized we were now a complete family.
He's the one that wanted this life, always and forever, you were always a part of him.

He's the one that had the hardest time letting Mia go.
He's the one that I got to watch fall in love with her.
He's the one that adores Pearl, and I got to watch them fall in love too.
He's the one that walks her, he's the one that is so patient.
He's the one that realized we needed to wait and heal.
He's the one that also realized I couldn't live without her.

He's the one that won't let any of us walk away angry.
He's always the first to apologize.
He's the fixer, he's always putting us back together.
He's the one that built our house.
He's the one I see in every corner of it.
He's the one that is always trying to make us happy.
He's the one that loves us, so much he can't see straight.
He's the one that laughs, his job is to be silly.
He's the one that has so much joy, naturally sitting in there, and we're the ones that need to remind him of that.

He's the one you get your eyes from
he's the one you get your childhood joy from
he's the one you want to make happy
he's the one you really adore.
He's the one we can count on.
He is the one I count on.
He's the one that knew we were it for him.

He's the one that is more simple.
He's the one that doesn't question much.
He's the one that hasn't met someone he doesn't like.
He's the one that sees the good in everyone.
He's the one that has a good heart.

He's the one that forgets a lot.
He's the one we love.
He's the one that needs constant reminders that all of this is crazy messy goofy love.
He's the one that needs constant reminders that this is childhood.
He's the one that needs constant reminders that this was his childhood.
He's the one that needs constant reminders that this was him, always him.
He's the one that needs to be reminded that he will never be loved and needed this much again.
He's the one that we love.
He's the one that we love.
He's the one that we love.
He's the one that won't ever let us give up.
He's the one that won't ever walk away.
He's the one that expects you to move mountains.
He's the one for us, he's the one for me, he's the one that put this family together.
He's the one that we love.
He's the one that we love.
He's the one guys.

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