17
Jan

Tomorrow

We lived the whole of our early lives under the rule of postponement: life was not in the present, it was always ahead of us. Somewhere in the future we would be the people we intended to be. - Diana Trilling - The Beginning of the Journey

Isn't it strange...how we live our lives for another day?
I was the best of the best at this. I always thought to myself, I need to get through _____________.
This month, this quarter, this week, this year, these next three years. Three years of waiting on happiness.
I always thought, put it off...whatever it was...put it off until you're older.
Save the trips for retirement, save the money for a rainy day, see the world another time, save for later.
Save all you have, someday you can use it. What if something were to happen and you needed it?

Isn't it strange...how we live our lives for another day?
And then I saw how quickly life passes you by.
I saw so many important people around me waiting.
I saw how little our window of time with our littles really is - how little time we have to be just us four + puppy.
And then I saw, there was nothing to wait for, we have now, what are we waiting on?

Isn't it strange...how we live our lives for another day?
I saw people wait to enjoy life until after, and then I saw that time taken from them.
I saw them robbed of their tomorrow.
I saw how difficult things are when you get older, and how many things get more difficult with age.
I saw us planning, me planning, always waiting on the future us.
And then I saw, there was nothing to wait for, we have now, what are we waiting on?

Isn't it strange...how we live our lives for another day?
And then, I stopped. I stopped waiting and I stopped looking forward to tomorrow only.
I am not saying that I am in the present all of the time.
I am not saying that I am never in a season of hard.
I am not saying that I do not get weighed down with heavy or worried.
But I have stopped waiting.

Isn't it strange...how we live our lives for another day?
It's a strange thing to have gone through the pain of walking your parent to their final days.
It's a strange thing to have lived your life buried in work and everything feeling too heavy.
It's a strange thing to define yourself by your work and feel unsatisfied with it.
It's a strange thing to start over, to redefine your terms.
It's strange to have terms, your own terms.

Isn't it strange...how we live our lives for another day?
I created something that makes me happy, whole, and balanced.
I created something that gave me back my time, my power.
I created something that I no longer allow to define me, but I do still love.

Isn't it strange...how we live our lives for another day?
I started adding more and more balance to my life.
Walks to walk.
Snuggles and naps.
Working out to feel good.
I fall asleep listening to the rainfall.
I take really long baths.
I spend time with my kids.
Time with my person.
Time, I gave myself time again.

Isn't it strange...how we live our lives for another day?
We travel, we see things now.
We slow down and at the same time, we do things that make us smile.
We talk a lot more now, we examine if we are falling back into old habits.

Isn't it strange...how we live our lives for another day?
I am no longer interested in tomorrow.
I am no longer going to get through a time/season in my life.
I am no longer waiting.



10
Jan

Hi.

Hi 2023.
I have lots and lots to write to you.
I have lots and lots of feelings for you, about you.
But, I also want to be realistic.
I do not want to put too much pressure on you, me, or us.

As usual, I have a word for us 2023.
I have something that I want to guide us along the way.
Respect.

I want to live a year of respecting myself.
I want to live a whole year in which I have self-respect.
A year where I remember my worth.
A year where I remember my strength.

A year where I speak gently, to myself.
A year where I go easy on myself.
A year where I will forgive myself.
A year where I limit access to my heart.
A year where I set limits.

A year where I will expect more - but I no longer push for more.
I will expect more out of myself, but I will not die for my expectations.
I will expect more out of those that I allow close to my heart, but I will not beg for love.
I will expect to lean on my partner, but I will not expect minds to be read.

A year that I will not feel empty, but I will embrace space.
I will breathe in that space. I will breathe that space in. I will remember that I am privileged to have space.
A year that I will not feel alone, but I will embrace solitude.
I will remind myself that being cocooned is necessary at times.
A year of not always feeling. Not always connected and connecting.
And a year of connection.
Intentional connection. Welcoming in the new and making some quick decisions.

A year of realizing I am strong. God-dammit I am strong.
I live through a disease. A disease that I fight and I win every battle and every war.
I have mothered. And I mother you with my heart, my mind, my body, my soul. I try, I show up and I love. That all takes strength because not all days are easy.
I am a strong spouse. I love with all that I have. I think of you all of the time. I live to see you smile. I always want to feel connected and I put us first. I am your biggest fan and your sharpest critic. I am your friend, your home, your family. I live to love you, I am my best version with you.
I have driven an agency through thick and thin and gave it all of me. All of me.
Then I started something from nothing. I built an idea in my head and I grew it. I embraced the fear and the changes being thrown at me. I don't deal with fear and change well and I took it and ran with it.
I learn every single day.
I work hard, I play hard, and I love even harder.
I prioritize my health, and my body, no, I prioritize everything.
I run, I lift, I learned how to swim to do a triathlon for fuck sake.
I carry you, your feelings, your days, your memories, and our scars.
I look at my body with such disdain but look what we have done. Look what we do! Look at all we do together and we're not done.
I speak of it so poorly but time and time again, my body reminds me that we are not done. Not even close.
I have forgiven - with intention. I have forgiven those that haven't even said they were sorry.
I have loved, even those that did not gain my love, I gave it anyway.
I work on myself, and I learn from my mistakes. I take the time to learn about other people too, so I judge less.
I walked my father, lovingly, gracefully, and with dignity and respect, to his death.
I carried our scars too. I put our past behind us. I focused on what I learned from you and in the end, missing you was my greatest comfort.
That's strength.

I call myself meek. I am comfortable with my lack of self-confidence, but my lack of self-respect, that stops this year. It ends. It starts and ends with me.

Hi 2023.
I know it sounds like a lot.
I know it sounds like I've already put too much pressure on us.
But all I want is a little respect and I want it from me.

19
Dec

Superpowers

I have one superpower...one.
My ability to love.

I love to love on my people.
I am good at loving my people.
I am loyal.
I am a good listener.
I think about them.
I hear what people are saying, I really listen to them.

I love learning from my people.
Hearing how and why they do things.
I love learning tricks and different routines.
I love hearing their why and finding out what is important.

I love telling my people something I have been struggling with and learning how to improve myself.
They make me a better person
A better mom
A better bride
A better leader
I love learning from my people.

I love hearing back stories.
I love knowing what makes my people happy.
I love complimenting my people, reminding them of their superpower, their ability to be them.

I love my people.
I know right away if you are.
I love knowing your struggles and listening to you.
I love letting you know that you are not alone.
I love making you feel necessary, seen, heard, and believed.

I love laughing with them.
I love making them feel good.
I love being around them, I take comfort in their presence.

I love being real with them.
I love crying with them and talking about my marriage and parenting problems.
I want the world to know that we all struggle...that is the secret that no one talks about.
Struggles are real, and there is nothing wrong with you or me that we are in the middle of one.

I am good at loving my people.
It is a superpower and I take the responsibility very seriously.
Because to see a person's heart and hold it that close to you is serious and I don't play around with it.

With a superpower, comes kryptonite.

Like all superpowers, I too have a weakness and my very own kryptonite.
My kryptonite is my superpower.
It too is my ability to love.

I love hard and to a fault.
My expectations are always too high because my self-expectations are high.
And I get hurt, as all people get hurt, but I hold on longer than most.
The pain, let's just say I am taken by surprise...every single damn time.
I am bewildered and that's when I lose my voice and my power.
I can feel beat up. I am often surprised by how harsh humans can be.
I often take way too long with people...way too long...years too long...before I find my voice and my self-respect.
I have kryptonite.

Lovies, your mamma has been through it recently.
Just know I am quiet because I am thinking.
Just know that I am sad because I am regrouping.
Just know that I am lost in thought because I am working through the blame.
Because I always start with blame; blaming myself.
I'm the common denominator after all. There must be something I am doing.

Or...
Could it be that when you love like this, it is easy to pile on?
Could it be that I may be easy to dump on AND I take love too seriously?
Could it be that I am one that forgets herself and her self-worth and just goes quiet?
Could it be that I need to look at my life, how I am leading it, and who I am allowing to have access to me?
Could it be that it is time for me to look at the life I am leading?
Should I take a look at what I am doing?
Should I make some changes?
Should I learn to love a little differently?
And then start again...start loving again.

I find myself at a crossroads and at the end of another year. I have some figuring out to do, that is for damn sure.

But the way I love on you...
Littles, if my superpower is my ability to love, I do it best with you.
I am super at loving you.
I set a strong foundation for us.
I am real with you.
I am empathetic.
I am on your team but I set standards for you because I believe in you.
I see your heart.
I have nicknames for you...many many many nicknames.
I have cute ways of telling you how much I love you...many many many ways.
I set family traditions that you look forward to and love love love.
I create memories for you and for me...good ones.
You gave me my second chance at childhood.
I gave you your first.
You give me warmth.
I give you a safe home.
You give me snuggles.
I give you my heart.
You give me smooches.
I give you all of me.
I shine brightest at loving on you my loves.
It is my superpower.

12
Dec

The power of gray

Rich colours actually look more luminous on a grey day, because they are seen against a somber background and seem to be burning with a lustre of their own. Against a dark sky all flowers look like fireworks. - G. K. Chesterton - "The Glory of Grey"

It snowed today. And although not our first snowfall of the season, our first all-day snowfall.
Although it was messy and very sloppy, I took a slow and deliberate run in the quiet gray.

If you love to run and it's a part of your routine and identity, you have to find a way to continue to do it in this kind of weather. Living in upstate New York gives you very few "perfect weather for running" days so you have to make do with what comes your way.
So, on this very wet and sloppy kind of a mess, I took a very slow and deliberate run.
In the quiet gray that surrounded me.

There's something so special about running in this weather. The streets are empty. You can see people inside their homes. You can see fires coming out of their roofs and you can see the glow of TVs and lights already on because the gray is taking over. Everything is a little slower.

Every once in a while, you'll run into someone shoveling their driveway or out for a walk. You'll catch a dog trying to figure out what is happening to its grassy patch of earth, but most of the run, it's just me and the sound of my feet. It's me shaking off the snow so I don't feel too wet. It's just me and the gray, all around me gray.

And it's gorgeous. The quiet is gorgeous, the sound of nothing. The white trees are gorgeous, the way they get heavy. The cold is gorgeous, you notice your each and every breath.

When I get home, the fireplace is on. The puppy is snuggled and cozy. The warmth takes over and the colors of my home come to life.
"...because they are seen against a somber background and seem to be burning with a lustre of their own..."

There is power in gray. There is a deepness and richness to it. There is a quiet that is needed and a slowness that is desired. Things take longer when it's gray. Time slows down to a more appropraite speed. I feel calmer in gray, more able to rest my body and my thoughts.
There is a power in that.
There is power in gray.
27
Nov

The answer

You were the answer to my wish upon a star.

Lovies, it has been a flipping year and a half.
That is for damn sure.
I am not sure how many more hits this mamma of yours can take but here is what I do know...
as much as I am impacted and floored, and processing the blows, I'm still
grateful...
thankful...
and lucky...
to have met you.

You were the answer to my wish upon a star.

I know you know this, but this mamma of yours wanted no babies.
Not a single one.
Dad knew it and get rolled the dice on me.
I knew he needed to be a dad and I rolled the dice too.
He won, and thank god he did.

You were the answer to my wish upon a star.

I had no idea how much I was missing you in my life.
I had no idea that you were a part of my purpose, my reason, my life.
I needed to be your mother. I needed to mother you both.
I needed to have babies and they needed to be you.
I needed to feel your heart beating, I needed to carry you.
I needed to rock you to sleep and bathe you.
I needed to read to you and get excited about your amazing milestones.
I needed to mother you both.

You were the answer to my wish upon a star.

Your smiles, your warmth, your excitement.
Your belief in magic, your desire to be good, do good.
Your mistakes, my mistakes, your lessons, my lessons.
Your love of love, my need for more and more love.

You were the answer to my wish upon a star.

Time is marching on, you're both getting so so big.
But in this house, not much really changes.
The foundation, the strength, the commitment to love, the traditions, the unit, the desire to be together,
it all stays exactly where it is.

Time is marching on, you are both getting so so big.
With more than "play dates"...now you have "plans".
With more than a little kid game...now you have a real team to show up for.
With more than what to wear today...now there are outfits and routines.
With more than friends...now you are creating squads.
Time is marching on, that's for damn sure. But you were and still are my answer.

You were the answer to my wish upon a star.

As you walk this planet, have desires, have some plans.
But be very open to change.
Be very aware of how giving in to something you always feared may make you forever grateful that you did.
Meet family, and surround yourself with family in every way.
Remember love, make memories, make something.
Be you, the wonderful incredible you that I had this incredible wonderful front seat at watching.
The answer to a question I never wanted to ask.

You were the answer to my wish upon a star.

21
Nov

What we see

You see a kitchen.
I see us writing happy hearts every week and I see pancakes and I see pizza and I see a family all in one spot.
I see where your highchair was and all the entertainment you gave me from it.
I see you falling asleep sitting up when we changed from 2 naps to one.
I see us going over sounds animals make while I fed you.
I see us singing.
I see all of our moments...I see all of us.

You see a bedroom.
I see where I read to you. Where I rocked you. Where I held you. Where I fed you.
I see where your crib was, I see the look on your face when I entered your room after a nap or a deep sleep.
I see a sleepy baby, ready for bedtime, after a bath, smelling perfect.
I see where we introduced you to Mia. I see her smelling you and not knowing what this life now meant for all of us.
I see all of our moments...I see all of us.

You see our front room.
I see the room we first brought you home to.
I see where you rolled over, where you walked, where you played.
I see where you hung out, I see our first family movie nights.
I see our red chair, the one we snuggled into. The one dad held you all night while you were sick in.
I see our fireplace and our love for warmth.
I see Mia's happy face when we were all there together and I see her trying to climb up on top of me when dad watched sports.
I see all of our moments...I see all of us.

You see a bathroom.
I see your first tubs. The ones that you were so small you needed a tub inside of a tub.
The ones where you were sitting up and would play.
I see us writing with the letters that stuck to the walls together.
I see you squealing.
I see you moving from a tub inside a tub, to a sitting child, to someone that bathed alone to someone that takes showers.
I see us fighting you to brush properly.
I see us fighting you to keep it cleaner.
I see all of our moments...I see all of us.

You see our backyard.
I see you making fun of me about how small the pool we put in is.
I see you and dad playing ball, any ball together.
I see you playing basketball by yourself.
I see your swing set - the one you loved and would smile so big on.
I see your baby pool, the one you loved until you were way too big for it.
I see summers outside.
I see our firepit that we all gathered around.
I see Pearl running from one side to the other. Her gallop is so beautiful as she chases the newest smell.
I see us playing fetch and ball with her.
I see her amazing smile when we're all together.
I see all of our moments...I see all of us.

You see a house.
I do not.
I see the home we created, with such unbelievable intentions.
I see our traditions.
I see our love.
I see our family.
I see the beauty in our lives.
I see and feel our memories.
I feel the warmth that was built here.
I see all of our moments...I see all of us.

7
Nov

Showing up.

I show up.

For my kiddos.
For my husband.
For my body.
For my health, for my life.
For my work and my career.
For my employees.
For my friends, for their hearts.

I show up.

As a mother, a really proud one.
As a bride, a really caring one.
As a dog mom, a really loving one.
As a boss - a badass boss.
As a friend, a damn good one.
As a runner and a woman that puts strength first.
As a writer.
As a giver.

I show up.

For you.
For him.
For them.
For me.
For love.
For strength.
For family.

I show up.
I don't know how not to and I don't want to figure it out.
I show up because I want to and because I have to.
I show up because I love the people in my life.

I show up.

30
Oct

Soulmates...nope.

This lover of love.
This sap.
This cryer at commercials.
This woman with one superpower, loving others, does not believe in soulmates.
Does not does not does not.

Lovies, dad is the love of my whole life.
I think about my love for him all of the time.
I think about how I could be loving him better.
I think about him and his heart and if I am taking care of both.
But, I do not think we are soulmates.

Lovies, dad is the love of my whole life.
When I met your dad, everything hard melted.
I met my family.
I met happy.
I met easy.
I met the start of forever.
I met my forever and always.
But, I did not meet a soulmate.

Lovies, dad is the love of my whole life.
But love and marriage and parenting and forever and always IS hard and I do not take that for granted.
I do not take our marriage for granted.
I do not believe that something else out there is keeping us together so we can neglect our relationship.
I know we have to work on it, us, all of us all of the time.
We can take a day off here or there, but every time we take too much time off from us, nothing but us brings us back.

Lovies, dad is the love of my whole life.
But, I do not think we are perfectly suited for each other in every way.
I believe that he is my balance.
I believe he is my counterpart and I do believe that I need his energy.
But, I do not believe that he understands all of me.
I do not believe that we were born to meet.
I do not believe our souls were connected and that he would be lost without me.

Lovies, dad is the love of my whole life.
When we started, I was drawn to him.
For the first time in my life, I wanted something easy and to find someone happy.
Full of actual joy.
We happily fell into love and joy.
Years later, we have continued to add hard here and there and have to continuously check in.
We have to keep each other in mind.
We have both changed and we need to make sure that our entire foundation hasn't crumbled.
We have to make sure as we grow and change we are doing it in the same direction, or else it won't work.
No matter how it felt in the beginning, it won't work.
Our history won't keep us together.
That first smile won't.
That first kiss won't.
They will keep you warm when things get cold but they will not keep you.

Lovies, dad is the love of my whole life.
Not my soulmate but the love of my life and I will do all that I can to keep that love strong.
I will work on keeping us because I know that nothing else will.

Do not read this to think that I will huff and puff at you believing in them.
Do not read this thinking I will poke fun.
But, do not wait thinking someone perfect is out there either, and do not walk away when it gets hard.
Even soulmates have to work at it.
But I do hope you find the love of your whole life.

18
Sep

A gift.

When I was 30, I was presented with a gift. And not one I had always imagined. Not one I ever thought I would want. Not one that I knew my whole life I would one day get and cherish. But just the same, I was presented with a gift.
It came in a little package, all bundled up. It was shiny and brand new but somehow familiar.

I never thought I would describe mothering, motherhood, or parenthood as a gift, but that is exactly what it is. My littles, you have been a gift. Not always wrapped in pretty ribbon and bows, and sometimes we are all frayed, but a gift nonetheless.
When I unwrapped the package, I saw his eyes, my soul, his face, my love.

The last thirteen years have not been a blur for me. Although they have gone fast and fierce, they have been so intentional and deliberate. I have watched and held on to so many moments, so many days. The memories that flood my mind are what bring such an intense smile to my face. When I look back at our pictures, our moments of us, I cannot help but feel this rush of joy. Your life, these memories, they have been such a gift.
When I first laid my eyes on what I was gifted, I knew in my soul this is exactly what I was always meant to do, love on you.

Our first year together was a year like no other. Only filled with love and intention. Only filled with a heart so full and warm. It quickly became our little world, you quickly became a significant part of mine. I watched you turn into a person in 12 months. You went from a bundle to someone I could make smile. You went from a gentle warm snuggle to someone I could make laugh, someone who made me laugh. You went from not being able to lift your head to crawling, standing, and talking. Your first words were so precious. You loved the people in your world and were cautious with the rest.
When I spoke to you, I would get close, as if to whisper. I would soak you all in, your smell, your warmth, your smile, my smile staring back at me.

Watching you grow into who you are, who you will one day be, but who you always were, has been the greatest privilege of my life. The most precious gift. I get this incredible front-row seat. And I thank you for it littles. I thank you for allowing me to still be involved for as long as you need. I thank you for realizing that we are always here, even when you do not need us. I realize that we will not always have this front-row seat. I realize how limited our time is, but for this very moment in time, I am gifted with you.
When you are gifted something so precious, you want to make sure you take very good care of it, and I tried very hard to take good care. However, you do not want it to feel fragile and breakable. You want to make sure the gift is fully realized, and I tried very hard to make sure you knew your potential.

You have filled my home with joy.
You have given me a second childhood, you gifted me childhood and I got to work on protecting your little.
I do not shelter you, but I do protect my gift.
I do not keep you from growing up, but I do ask you to walk slowly.
No is not my favorite word, but you know our boundaries.
I know my gift is so delicate and fragile, but also built with such incredible force and strength.
The gift has such warmth. It created warmth in my home.
It was exactly what my home needed. Warmth and joy and mess and craze. My home was missing you and I didn't even know it. My home was too quiet and I didn't even realize it. My home, my life, my heart, it needed the gift of you.

The little in my life is a gift. Christmas mornings, traditions, ice cream for dinner, Cape summers, beaches, toys, Legos, and puzzles. Balls and games. Music and dance parties. Friday night pizza and movies. Binge-watching shows. Reading dates and snuggles on top of snuggles. Hand holding everywhere and all of the time. Puppy kisses and walks. Walks on top of walks on top of walks. Pictures, all of the pictures. Waffles and pancakes. The weekend mornings that are slow. The nights that are filled with whispers of love in your dreams. My gift, you have been my gift.
And so I thank you for this time, this little window of time. I want to thank you for my gift. The one I unwrapped so many years ago. The one that had his eyes, my smile. His joy, my serious. His newness, my old soul. His love, my love, together, we unwrapped a gift.

11
Sep

Summer of 2022

The summer of 2022 started with a significant loss. All of us lost my dad. After 13 really hard months, he was no longer with us. It's an adjustment we are all making and dealing with.
The loss was immediately met with the love and support of family and friends. It was a beautiful reminder of how much life goes on. How hard people love. How much they want to be there and want to love and support you.

The summer of 2022's middle was a celebration of a wonderful wedding. A wedding that was filled with warmth. Simple love. A couple that just wanted to share this moment of commitment with their family. A couple that is so amazing, so caring, so ready for a lifetime of love. I got to watch these two share moments so tender and loving, that you couldn't help but feel filled with joy. They are joy.

The summer of 2022 ended with a continuation of years and years of tradition with a trip to the Cape. The best week of the entire year. A week of summer. Beaches, eating, coffee, drinking, laughing, watching TV, runs by the ocean, puppies so tired they are falling asleep anywhere, just a week of us. One more amazing week of joy and the definition of childhood.

If I am being honest, the summer of 2022 had this quiet linger of sadness that grew louder as we rolled into fall. I don't know why. I can't explain it. The sadness I felt for my dad brought me such comfort and love that I don't think that's the only reason why. I'm not sure if the bustling of the house was too much at the end. I'm not sure if it's because we didn't do a lot of the things I had hoped for. I'm not sure if it's because my littles are getting bigger and therefore growing up right in front of me. But, there is something lingering in the shadows that I cannot ignore.

If I'm being honest, the summer of 2022 also had these incredible bursts of love and joy to it. Just like I needed. And the moments of amazing were just that, amazing. Every time I felt a heaviness on my chest, I would be bombarded with love. Every time I felt this feeling of loneliness and a pull, I would be brought back to the reality of care and comfort.

So, we were able to see family and friends. We were able to connect with parts of my life and people in my life that I have missed so much. We were able to swim and enjoy our backyard. We were able to host. We were able to go. We traveled. We swam. We ate. We did fancy track days. We brought people back into our home and hearts.

Summer of 2022, from beginning to end, you were a reminder of love, family, friendships, care, and comfort.

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