“It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air.” -W.T. Ellis
“It is Christmas in the heart that puts Christmas in the air.” -W.T. Ellis
No photography today, folks. Or what seems like for months. But occasionally I feel inclined to share a random musing every now and then. I’d like to consider myself a deep thinker, I have a lot of time to think. I’m sure that during this thinking time, I could be snapping away, but I am still in that blind funk where I just can’t seem to see things as artists do, but I digress…
A couple of months ago a friend came to see me at work. She was picking up a consent form for my son to attend a week long retreat with her church. My friend is actively involved in her church and also happens to be the mother of my sons half brothers. Along with the two, she hosts a brood of 4 other children in her household. In that brief period of time when I handed her the form, I noticed she had chopped all of her hair off! It was now in a pixie cut. She asked me if I liked it, to which I replied, “I love it! You look like a mom!”
She was taken aback. “Um…thanks?” She said. I was confused at her response, and second guessed my compliment. “I just mean you look Great, Mon.”
I guess I just let it go, as did she. Since then, we have seen each other numerous times. And to be honest, she is more than just a friend to us, she is like family. My son wanted to spend more time with his brothers so she began inviting him to their youth fellowship events and eventually, it led us to begin attending church with her family on Sunday mornings. Normally, my son and I take time on Sunday mornings to visit my dad, but my mother was relieved when I asked her if we could instead attend church again. We now visit Saturday mornings 🙂
Being that today was Sunday, we took our places in the front row this morning at service. During the choirs morning song, I turned in the pew and got a really good look at her, my friend, my sister in spirit. As her daughter lay curled in her lap, I noticed she had gotten her hair trimmed recently to maintain her pixie look. It made me remember what I had said to her that one afternoon and I thought about what my words really meant.
“You look like a mom…”
I didn’t mean that she didn’t look like an individual. I didn’t mean that it made her look older. What I meant to say was,
Your new haircut makes you look so well-put-together, like you have all the secrets and hints on how to make it through each and every day without losing your shit. You look brave, like nothing in the world could scare you away from being exactly who you are. It compliments your eyes in the way they light up when you see a familiar face or when you meet a new friend. And it completes the look of relief that flashes across your face when you see me walk towards you, knowing that you will be able to speak adult for a short time before settling back into story time and nursery rhymes. You look caring, as one does who wipes noses and kisses boo-boos. You look a bit tired and it shows that you woke up early this morning to make breakfast for your family, helped dress them to get them where they needed to go for the day. And it brightens your smile, so that even though you may be a bit tired, you’ll never let on or complain about it for one second, knowing that some may not be as fortunate. It makes you look happy, like the confidence that radiates because your life is exactly the way it’s supposed to be and it makes you look like a force to be reckoned with, when anyone or anything crosses the line and disrupts the harmony of your family. You look like you love hard, and fight even harder to make sure everyone is well taken care of.
You look like a mom…and it’s so beautiful.
So, we are going to get a dog. Not this one, we opted for a much smaller variety.
Tiger, see photo above, happens to be my friend’s dog. I’m not sure if you read any posts prior to this, but I had a ton of practice with the two greyhounds I had when I was married. My ex took them as his house and yard is much bigger than my teeny, non-fenced patio apartment. Do I miss them? You bet. But to be very honest, I had always wanted a small dog. One that didn’t actually try to push me off of the couch or steal all the covers at night. I tease, I didn’t mind sharing much.
The personal part of my post is where I explain that I had always pushed aside everything I ever wanted to make everyone else in my life happy. Sure, they may have been little things here and there. But piles of small things measure up to big things after long periods of time. After realizing too late that my then-husband and I didn’t have the same goals in life, among many other things, I finally made the decision to make some very necessary changes.
Most people expect change. Most people expect their significant others to change. Marriage, Babies, Careers, First Time Home-buying, Funerals…these are all major life altering events that many families go through. And at each one of these points and any other time really, one person changes and the other one does not. The sad truth is, unless both parties are changing and growing together, it can lead to a lot of resentment and disappointment. My case was very unique. Different. And not any smarter than the above party mentioned, waiting for their others change to come.
I chose to try to change myself in order to fit relationship I was in.
How crazy is that, huh? Pretending to be someone you really aren’t. You guys must think I am completely psycho. But I truly thought my needs were insignificant and selfish. I truly thought I could be everything this person needed to be even though this was not who I really was. A small example. When we had first been married, we both came as package deals. Me with a 7-year-old-going-on-15 son and him with a 98lb. extremely hairy, German Shepherd/Greyhound mix named Oswald. And we made it work. When Oswald passed of old age, the house seemed too empty, so soon after we began the discussion of what breed of dog to get next. And of course, I gave in. Don’t get me wrong, I loved them, they were the best dogs I ever had. But it seemed like I was always giving in. Always putting my wants aside to allow others to have their way. As sweet and as kind as that sounds, I started to resent it, because it wasn’t being reciprocated. And after a long while, you start to feel stupid. What in the world have I been doing to myself? How long did this need to go on before you realized people were walking all over you? Taking advantage of you? Taking you for granted? Where is your sense of self-worth? I thought the silly things that really meant something to me, I didn’t really need to survive. Isn’t that what love is? Putting others ahead of yourself, even when your wants don’t seem to matter. Please understand that this is an extremely small piece of a much much bigger puzzle. No, I did not separate from my husband over a choice of dog.
I am rescuing a Yorkie. I have already put in the application and have already spoken with the foster parents. I am serving myself, thank you very much. I hope that there is a future man for me out there who won’t mind having a Son and a Yorkie as a package deal someday.
Realizing that these shots don’t have anything to do with my past marriage or my newly soon-to-be adopted Yorkie, I don’t care. Here is another picture of Tiger. Have a nice day. 😛
It has been a long and hectic couple of months. I am still here, still shooting, but honestly haven’t been into editing much. I think I need to get my monitor calibrated and the spyders are ridiculously priced for a hobbyist. Summer is soon coming to an end, school will be starting at the end of the month before Labor Day instead of after. My son will be stepping into his sophomore year of High School and I can’t help but feel the little pang of nostalgia when I remember what it was like watching him walk into preschool for the first time. He never looked back and I was so proud of him. Yes, we have hit those “I know better than you” and the “you don’t understand, you don’t have any idea” years, we are still going through them, but I haven’t lost hope that one day he will realize his potential and become as successful and hardworking as his Grandfather. Now days the need for hugs and kisses have long gone, the nights begging to be tucked in before bed have since put themselves to sleep. Now camera shy and awkward, we have come to this wall of parent/semi-adult and this territory with which I am so unfamiliar. When I could chase away sorrows and hurt with arms of love and affection and ice cream, now hide behind locked doors and on smartphone screens. I realize he is has grown so much, and so have I. 🙂
I know February just started, but I am already ready for this month to be over. We’ll be closer to March and is one month closer to Spring than we are now!
I don’t know why one sleeve is rolled up and one is not. Maybe one side was warm and the other cold? I don’t seem to notice these things until I get them up on the computer and embedded in the post draft. Oh well, here is my I heart selfie. Let’s move along February!
Life can sometimes be hard to balance. Work, fun, motherhood, cleaning, friendships, relationships, family… Some days, I just want to throw my arms in the air and scream Eff it all! I have always been such a people-pleaser, all I ever wanted to do was make the people around me as happy as I could. What I didn’t realize in all of this, was while I was nearly killing myself to make others happy, deep down inside – I was not happy, I was miserable. Don’t get me wrong, serving others is very dear to my heart, and understandably, serving without the expectations of receiving is as selfless as one can be – that’s actually what I was striving for. But not being able to serve yourself because you are always serving others is a daunting and exhausting task. Sometimes you need to ask for help and just hope that maybe, it will be given back to you.
I have learned so much this past year. I learned that in the end, sometimes you just have to stand up for yourself. I learned that the only person in charge of your happiness is you. Life is only what you make it to be, and that you shouldn’t or can’t depend on others to make you happy. I learned that Gary Chapman’s “The five love languages” only works when both parties are willing to fill each others love tanks. I learned that life is so fleeting and ever-changing, you never know when something life altering is going to come into play. I learned to be diligent in my goals, knowing that if I didn’t follow the proper steps, I would never reach them. I learned that life can be so beautiful if you take the time to appreciate it. I learned that I was strong enough. And more than that, I learned that I deserved happiness.
I hope you all had a great weekend and my challenge for you this week, is to find YOUR happy.
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