It physically pains me to think about the bullying, the mean words, the hatred and ugliness I won't forever be abIe to protect my daughter from. I'm angry and hurt at some very cruel things I've read lately on social media - indirectly directed at others and now even at myself. I'd be lying if I said I didn't want to stoop to their level, comment back, defend myself and say equally if not more hurtful things in response. Yes, I want to be ugly.
But as I sit here, taking deep breaths while writing this out I am realizing that the only thing I can control is my reaction.
The only thing that I can be sure of is the person I'm being for my daughter to see. I can react 100 different ways but the way I will choose is to teach her, to set an example for her, to the way that she will react someday herself. That is the only thing I can control. The way I respond will be my lessons in hope that I can show her how to react with kindness over hurtful words. With patience over attack. To show compassion instead of judgment. Yes I will pray her w h o l e life that she chooses kindness even in anger. And that she will show empathy even when others are cruel.
I feel defensive when it comes to my own beliefs - not that my political, religious, marital or parenting views are that of anyone's business || but should someone care enough to take the time to ask me they might know a little more about my heart instead of making cruel assumptions.
Those things I am defensive for yes. But I will go to the ends of the earth in defense from ugliness when it comes to my daughter - my husband - or my family.
I am not sorry for sharing the wonderful moments of my life on social media. I've never portrayed my life as something that it is not. We are all guilty of posting more good than bad. Is that not what social media is for? To share in our joy and happy moments? Yes we all tend to share the good over the bad but that does not mean my good is not truthful of its reality.
Everything I share is one hundred percent real. But the hard things, they are there too.
-The fear that comes with facing the reality of losing my father to the incurable cancer he was diagnosed with. I battle myself daily over mixed emotions that include denial, regret, sadness, and hopefulness. I want to fix something I have no control over. I want more time. I want time back. I struggle to prepare for something inevitable, something that for everyone is a part of life - but still I ache with emotion so complicated to explain.
-The post partum anxiety I suffered during the first few months of my precious daughter's life. The way even someone else holding Sawyer caused enough stress to bring on a panic attack so severe I was absolutely unable to breathe or form a sentence. I felt embarrassed - as if something was wrong with me for being so attached to my daughter. Motherhood was the most amazing experience I'd ever been thrown into yet still at times I felt paralyzed. I felt everything good and bad at once. But I spoke about the good. I shamed myself for not being able to talk about how post partum counseling brought out the best of me and healed my fears- taught me who I am as a wife and a mother and showed me it was okay to be vulnerable. It's always okay to be vulnerable.
-The ache I feel when I think about Callie on the occasional day that my grief surfaces and finds ways to consume me even years later. Once in a while over a simple memory, sometimes over a big memory. My best friend. My other half. Her loss, her death - it has both taken away a part of me, and it has become a part of me. My grief for her is permanent; it is ever changing but constant. The most joyful and wonderful days of my life have been experienced since she’s been gone yet still I've missed her through them. Such a complicated emotion for a grieving but thriving heart.
- The stress and fear my husband and I have over the major life decisions we are making that affect not only just us but also our baby. We ask ourselves terrifying questions all the time. Sometimes we argue - sometimes I yell and sometimes he shuts down. Yes we pester over small things and we cry together over big things but we always. always. come back to one another making sure we've communicated what the other needs to hear to feel loved. understood. appreciated. He chooses me everyday and I choose him. We share our fear but it doesn't mean we don't have any. We ask each other was moving our whole family for med school the right decision? Have we saved enough? Are we making the right choices? What if we haven't saved enough? What if this doesn't work? What if what if what if?
What if it's hard? Wait- what happens WHEN it's hard? What if it's TOO hard?
Yes these are the things that keep me up at night.
And then there is this:
The inability I have to be unaffected by what others say about me. It's true- I am sensitive and I care - I'm tender hearted and I am so much softer than I sometimes seem and words DO hurt me. Because I'm a human, because I'm a mother and a wife and a daughter and a friend and sister and an aunt and I'm a hundred things that are just like YOU and because no matter how hard I try not to let it bother me- words still hurt me. Mean words hurt me- intentional words hurt me. Words aimed at others | on purpose or not. They hurt me.
At the end of the day I'm married to a man- who fiercely and whole-heartedly loves me for every bit of who I am. He is as generous, loving, patient, and romantic behind the doors of social media as I make him out to be on the Internet. His love for me is real. It's hard and it's constant - and I will not apologize for sharing it and shouting it from the rooftops because of who he is.
I will never deserve him - the husband and father he is. I could live a thousand lifetimes and never deserve him. I love him more than anything. Cliché or not. I love him infinitely, endlessly.
The hard things in life are real for everyone. The days I feel exhausted and empty completely dry and tapped out from everything motherhood and life takes from me - they are hard. I question my parenting choices, some days I snap and lose all patience. But still I write about the good. I share the joy and I share our happiness because it’s all. so. real.
I know that all that really matters are my people || my loving family and dear friends who care to know the hard stuff - who care to not pass judgments and assumptions. Who care to share in my joy and heartache. Who love me. Yes, they are who remind me why I can't care about those words.
I am ashamed, humiliated, angered, and saddened by the words in a post so angrily directed at me. I am so many emotions but I am not BROKEN by her words. I can only pray for this person who doesn't have the ability to see that what we are all fighting for is the right to have our own opinions and beliefs heard- understood- respected. I can only pray harder that someday she isn't taken to putting others down so that she can feel better about herself. I will pray God softens her heart.
I know that God loves her and everyone. God loves me. God loves you and the asshole across the street. God loves the person who annoys the hell out of you on Facebook and God loves every person that you love. He loves president Obama and president Bush whether you love either of them or not. God loves you if you're a good mom or a struggling mom. God loves you if you're not a mom. He loves you when you say ugly things and he loves you even when you don't do the right thing. That is what is so wonderful about God.
I choose everyday to see the glass half full. My life is beautiful. It's been painful and heart aching but it is wonderful and I will continue to share its Joys. The good parts are real. My love and my faith and my marriage - it is so very. very. real. And the hard things. They're real too- but they'll never take away from the good.