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Summer Break? Part 1

I’m only a week overdue for posting the update I promised! Summer has come and nearly gone, but the moms out there trying to mom mental illness, mom it solo or even semi-solo, mom through it all, no matter what. We’ll ALL moms know breaks are for everyone else, but you rarely catch one. For me breaks are few and far between. Sometimes, you would consider a psychotic break comforting. After all, it means disassociation, detachment from reality, some sleep, and three meals per day where YOU didn’t have to think about it. Then there is that whole meds, people wondering when the next episode is, and everything that would be left undone. Nope, not worth it!

Summer Breakdown?

I am proud to say that, no, my threefold and I, nor ‘E’ or my bonus kid have suffered from any major breakdown nor has there been setbacks. That’s right! It’s been a rough summer for my threefold. More difficult than I had hoped for, however they have progressed in ways I never thought I would see. I couldn’t be more proud and relieved to know that we hit a very bad time, but we were able to see it through to a path that didn’t involve inpatient or injury to self, property or some major crisis. However, that hard time was the closure of a chapter for all.

Summer Bucketlist

I wanted a Disney movie wonderful summer of family fun and kids enjoying marking items off of bucket lists. I wanted us to enjoy our lives after I had watched my aunt bury 2 of her sons at 33 and 29, my cousins, 2/3 brothers, the kids I grew up with and people who hadn’t even had the chance to have their own family yet. We needed to remember that while we still have life. We needed to live it.

I wanted my threefold and I to spend some quality time together without the stress of the previous school year. I needed to have those memories and I thought that’s what they needed too. I had hoped for vacation time and for all of my family to reconnect on a level that said “this is the good life.” As a response, life said my plans were not the same as life’s. Apparently we needed something else to overcome. {eye roll}

Summer Broke

This summer was hell and I don’t mean just the heat, these demon bugs we call mosquitoes, or the fires that were sparked by my anger, anxiety or my agitated mood. I had too much going on and my focus was not in the home. It was definitely not on me. It was not on ‘E’. BOTH of our vehicles broke down. Financially we were still trying to recover from February and March’s medical bills of the over 10 weeks of inpatient and partial hospitalization we have already had between #2 and #3 of my threefold this year. Not to mention the 17 weeks we were still working on from the previous. As it always seemed to be we were struggling.

I was stressed to the point I wanted to snap. I was impatient with my threefold, sitting and scheduling my life away from them while home, and so out of my depths. My focus was frazzled, fried, and finally furious at the circumstances I was in. I felt I was being oblivious to an obvious problem, overworked, overwhelmed, overlooked and finally I was OVER IT!

Summer Burn

I was ready to say “I’m done!” As my workload increased to that of a person expected to wear every hat of each position like a seasoned executive who wrote the rule book. I was trying to do the job of my superior, my support staff, be my own assistant, trainer, lead designer, sales superstar, the best, and I suddenly hit a wall. I decided to resign.

I had a staff who was overworked and overwhelmed. I had great people. In addition, they were trying to help . I asked myself why was this becoming such a nightmare. and it hit me. I was trying to save a boat that was sinking and everyone was about to jump ship. Why?

We have had high turnover for a minute now. My people didn’t quit. They grinder it out. They liked me…right? Well, I am likable, funny, driven, and have the memory of a person that will never forget about things that are really important. I’m just trying to hard or doing something wrong. I was trying to make people happy. It wasn’t the job. It wasn’t even me. It was the chaos that had come over the castle. I was merely coordinating chaos, and not correcting the issues causing it. Maybe, if I resigned it would be the white flag of surender saying I can’t manage the mess.

Summer School

My fairytale summer was shattered with my DIY crash course that I called “combat training”. I was battling the war at work and not only just promoted to a role as assistant manager in March, but I hadn’t been trained on how the processes to correctly handle the job. I had no idea that I was making things worse by constantly covering for my missing commander and chief. My loyalty and love for him and my livelihood depended on me finding the fix to any problem and showing my people I was the company woman who could handle anything. Even if I was I second guessing my every move. I knew my confidence would see us to calmer coexistence we all needed. I lied.

Summer Cold

My stress was making me sick. I had lost another ten pounds. I was not eating, not sleeping well as my mind raced at night wondering what did you forget. In addition, my usual routines all halted. Self care was non existent and my tolerance for other people’s problems went to the bottom of the list. However, I kept pushing. Something was going to have to give.

I decided to part ways. I was ready to resign. It was obvious that I was allowing yet another person take advantage of me. I wanted to give back what I was given, but I was becoming someone I didn’t like. I was becoming an angry person who hated coming to work because I was going to have another day of covering for someone else I cared for, covering for the man lying to everyone, and someone refusing to admit there was a problem. I was watching my past repeat in a work environment. I couldn’t allow myself to be broken and to become cold living in a hell I could escape from. I needed to stop the insanity. I was at peace with that.

Summer Escape

I had come to terms with my decision and turned in my resignation letter with a final lie. My lie said I had found employment that would allow me to be home more and present for my threefold. It is the only lie I felt believable enough that they wouldn’t put up the fight for me to stay. My tears had poured out of me writing that letter. I was devastated that it was a chapter that I never thought would end. At least until I funded my life as a freelance writer, designer, marketing guru, Facebook money mogul in the blogosphere of moms or whatever other dream that will one day create independence from a standard 8-5 job.

I loved this job. It was my break from my personal issues outside of there. I am awesome at this job. I am too good, actually. I am overqualified and I’m beyond grateful for that. I loved everything about my job. That was until I took the place of the man who walked out of this position before me. Red flag, maybe, but I saw my opportunity to step up. In that opportunity I sacrificed the thing I said I would not overlook again with a promise of more and a hope for the future we deserve. My threefold.

Summer Stolen

I had worked my butt off, literally, for this company. I felt I owed them after they moved mountains for me last summer to make it where I could be a mom and also have the place I could put that part away just for a bit and do something I loved. I was ashamed of my behavior. I was saying we needed more money than my own family needed me. A struggle any single mom knows.

Instead of staying with #2 at the hospital and going to the inpatient facility where I was needing to admit her again, I left her room in tears as she said “mom, it’s ok, you can go. You have to.” Did I? Well I needed to be in two places actually three, but I needed to not lose a promotion due to my personal life, because money had to become a larger factor.

We all need this to happen. I convinced myself I was doing the right thing. I know now she will always tell me what she thinks I need to hear in moments she thinks could be a burden. I was just blinded by a loyalty to a person who would use me and then replace me to save themself but I had no idea. As I was leaving I thought if I don’t get this promotion this will be enough to make me leave. I’m sacrificing more than I ever would, but hoped it would be better if I could have more control of the chaos. I could calm it as I could change the climate and bring the commander of my crew back.

Summer Storms

I got the promotion. The promises of change once our mid year inventory was over and the crisis at work calming down were as empty as any promise before. After deciding not to get blindsided by the brother who was thriving at this company, the man I fell in love with at this company and a few coworkers who had weathered this long hard season with me I was ready to make the move. My boss put up no fight or said any words of why I should stay. Instead, I was left thinking maybe he wanted me to leave. It was easy and unemotional. I was a mess about this, but me maybe I was just “replaceable”. I promised to help the next person as much as I could before the end of my notice in two weeks and was relieved. July would be the month that made our family reconnect and we could have some real quality time as a family. Again another storm brewed and I wouldn’t allow us to chase it anymore.

Summer Breakthrough

Little did I realize it was only the end of June and the chaos was fixing to get uncovered and everything was about blow up. I couldn’t have a summer break, I couldn’t afford a summer breakdown, we weren’t going to get a summer vacation that involved connecting and making the good memories of a life we were building and we had sacrificed for. This wouldn’t be the summer we deserved. It would be the summer that I found a way to breakthrough our barriers. It was the beginning of the new life. First we just needed to commit to weathering this summer storm and that was hitting us right at home.

TO BE CONTINUED….

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Parenting Hacks for Raising Teenagers

In case, I haven’t said it recently, mommin’ ain’t easy! If I’m the judge I think I would take the stinky diapers, tantrums, and baby proofing my whole home over raising teenagers! This level is hard! However, as a mom to my threefold <my three daughters> and the bonus mom to another, I have a few parenting hacks for raising teenagers. Yes. That’s right! Honestly, I’ve probably been lucky so far, but I have my days. In fact, there are days when I am screaming my head off while pulling out my hair!

Mommin’ Ain’t Easy

If you have a teenager you know! The truth is, raising Teenagers is hard work! If you have a rocky relationship with your teenager I know how you feel. On the other hand, if you have an awesome relationship with your teenager, I also know how you feel. Furthermore, if you have a relationship that could go either way from one day to the next, I’ve been that mom too. That’s the curse and the blessing of having four girls. Honestly, if one acts one way the other two act differently and with girls there is always drama! If I’m not in the middle of it, the cause of it, or have to fix it then that’s my idea of a good day!

The Mommin’ Manual

If you know me, you’ll know, I’m the mom who repeats ‘I love my kids. I love my kids. I love my kids!’ Obviously, I do, but this is my mantra as when I am increasingly irritated and want to fly off the edge of patience into momster mode. I didn’t get a mommy manual. Furthermore, the mom/daughter dynamics we hear about and see seem to be made-for-tv BFF bullshit or rivalry and rebellion. There is rarely an in between.

Real talk. We all have our own parenting styles and that’s ok. I’m more of the overly involved, anxious, pushover but with rules. In the end, I want my kids to come to me if they have a problem, not be scared. However, am I right in being that way? Hell if I know. I’m winging my mom life, remember?

Parenting Hacks for Raising Teenagers

No, I don’t have a mommy manual and yes, I’m winging it as I go. However, winging it has helped be successful even it hasn’t gotten me any mom of the year awards. As a momma to three girls and a bonus daughter, who all range in age from 10-18, I’ve had to learn a few parenting hacks to save my sanity and my relationships with these four girls.

Hacks and Hand Me Downs

  1. To start, my number one hack when I need to figure out how to handle my teens is to remember to be the mom I needed when I was their age.
  2. Next, I remember what being a teenage girl was like for me. Even though, it was over 20 years ago!
  3. Another way, I parent is that I listen before I react or respond. 9/10 a thoughtful response goes further than a screaming match ever will.
  4. Wifi passwords can change. I have fallen in love with the app that controls our wifi that I can pause from wherever. I can assign devices and the kid who hasn’t acted right can have their service suspended, Meanwhile, the others can continue living with the luxury of access. Best invention ever!
  5. I gave my kids prepaid phones, no contract. That phone has become the best and worst thing in our lives. It is a wonderful tool if needed. Yes, I resort to bribes when necessary.
  6. In addition, if you miss school you do not have a social life. Don’t say you are sick and then ask if boyfriend or bestie can come by. No.
  7. If my kids want something from me, then they better be willing to work for it. I’m not rich, if they want me to flip the bill for their movie night with their friends or birthday gifts, then they need to do their part. After all, nothing in life is free.
  8. In my opinion, one thing has helped us connect is my threefold and Ione on one time. We do what they are into. Since I have three, I usually aim for one day each per month and one family day all together.
  9. Something else we’ve done is family dinner. Sometimes, this ends in frustration and irritation. Mostly, it end with laughs and communication about the highs and lows of each child’s day.
  10. Like most teenagers, my threefold need to hear the good things about them. Do they make faces and huff when they don’t want to do something, absolutely. However, I do too!
  11. Cut them a little slack. No they can’t get away with skipping school or failing grades. But, hey, if they get a C or even a D on a test, it happens! If they say they need ‘a day off’ and that’s not a regular request, let them. It’s not the end of the world!
  12. Stop holding kids to standards you as an adult can’t reach! If I was graded for my job, I definitely wouldn’t have straight A’s. My attitude is sketchy sometimes. I don’t want to get up in the morning either. I don’t clean my plate. I don’t watch my mouth. I’m not going to make my child feel like perfection is attainable. It’s not.
  13. Finally, let them be themselves. If they can’t be comfortable at home then where are they supposed to be? Honestly, don’t allow your short sidedness hinder them feeling able to be exactly who they are. In addition, know that as a teen that identity will change multiple times.

How My Mom Skills have Helped Me

#1

I know nearly everything my 18 year old does, not because I read her messages or track her phone location, but because she tells me. In fact, I would say she overshares with me at times! When she knew her and her boyfriend of 2 years were headed towards the main event when she was 17, she came to me. We talked about it and took the necessary actions.

#2

My 14 year old has always lacked a filter, but at least she is honest {mostly}. However, as she has begun to mature, her communication got better. For example, when she came out and said she was attracted to other girls, I was able to process the information. This led to more inclusivity of her friends and others. In addition, as a family we were able to support her and boost her confidence in sharing her once secret with others in her life.

#3

This child of mine, she is still young , at only 10. Not all of my methods work for her yet, because she still has less independence. However, I do know that my patience and consistency are key to her feeling heard when she expresses herself. In addition, validation and not feeling like perfection is necessary to please me allows her to feel more comfortable to be herself.

#Bonus

As for my bonus daughter who is 16, I feel my not being overly critical has made us closer. If I have an issue, I will address it mostly with her dad before her. However, we have some heart to heart conversations as well. I don’t try to be her parent, but I try to treat her like my own. That’s a hard balance. In a way, I’m not overstepping but I’m making sure that she is invited and involved in family days, outings, and our routines when she is with us.

Hacks for raising Teenagers

No Method is Perfect

My methods have worked out for me in many ways on this journey. It’s far from perfect and I screw up sometimes, too. I’m going to keep doing me, and you can do you! There isn’t a one size fits all parenting style.

My teenagers test me with their smart ass mouths {that sound just like mine} and quick comebacks quite often. At the end of the day, I know that my threefold isn’t afraid to talk to me. That’s the beauty of it. As always, stay positive! We’ve got this! ☮️❤️😊~M psss: follow My Threefold on Facebook

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19 Truths about Raising Teenage Daughters

Mommin’ ain’t easy y’all! Raising teenage daughters is comparable to being a personal assistant that is on call 24/7 and has an unappreciative and entitled employer. I wasn’t prepared for many things when I became a momma. This level is harder than I anticipated! Moms walk this fine line of love and hate with their daughters.Honestly, if you have a teenager it’s like all the rules change. Anyone who thinks boys are harder, well they haven’t spent a day with my threefold.

Daughter

Teenage Daughters…(sigh)

I was a teenager, ya know, once upon a time. My mother and I weren’t the mother/daughter duo of tv sitcoms. To be honest, we barely tolerated each other and I never wanted to have that relationship with my threefold. When I became a mom, I was determined to be a better mom than my own. In ways, I am but in some ways I can see why my mom was the parent she was too.

My mom wished threefold upon me before #2 of my threefold was born. {thanks again mom} After my mom passed away I was only 23 and had no preparation for what motherhood would actually be. What I have found is that it is the hardest job on the planet. The truth is that a mom is equal parts of feeling like you are never enough and feeling like you are always doing too much. All. The. Damn. Time.

Moms do their best

You Are a Good Mom

In case no one has told you lately, you’re a good mom! You are doing a great job and you are appreciated. I tell myself that when I am kicking myself in the ass for yelling at my threefold or stressing over all the things that moms worry about. However, it’s hard to see the appreciation through the eye rolls and sighs of discontentment we receive from our offspring. It’s there. Even if it isn’t said.

I know what my threefold love {and hate} about me. I know my strengths {and weaknesses} as a mom. One thing that has come to light as my threefold have grown is that they each need different things from me as a mom. They are unique individuals. Mommin’ isn’t a one size fits all gig. Even so, all we can do is give our best everyday and hope our best is good enough.

Hot mess mom

Raising Teenage Daughters

I didn’t receive a guide for raising my threefold. I didn’t even have a person to go to and ask about this whole mom thing. My parenting style is just me winging it, almost as much as my daughter wings her eyeliner these days. Most moms think they know what to expect, but you definitely don’t. If you did then I would argue that you should write that guide for the rest of us moms who are out here running on caffeine and chaos!

For the moms who are just starting out, the newbie on the mom scene this list is for you. May the odds be ever in your favor. Stay strong, like that coffee you will be drinking in the morning to fuel your motivation for motherhood. To the moms who are in the trenches raising teenagers, I hope this gives you a sigh of relief that you aren’t alone. This list will make you laugh, cringe, and maybe even shake your head. Whatever your reaction, just remember, we get threefold what we gave to our parents…and so will our children get that too!

Mom life

19 Truths I’ve Learned Raising Teenage Daughters

  1. Hoarding. Yes I said it. 2 out of 3 of my threefold seem to be hoarders. I have a mine field on two of the bedrooms of our home. Not cool. Afterall, trash goes in trash cans, not under beds. It’s like going into A Marshall’s department store. You just go to browse, but you leave with a bag full of clothes, a random set of cutlery, some dishes, and a headache.
  2. Wastefulness. The amount of food I find wasted is obscene. The drinks left half full and you hear the same thing. However, they want to blame everyone else except themselves. You wonder why you have a grocery bill that is equal to a mortgage payment each month and then to see the waste. It’s infuriating!
  3. DRAMA. This one! Wow. I don’t remember being this dramatic when I was a teenager, but I’m sure I was. If you want to strike up a conversation with a teenage girl just ask how their frenemy is doing. The result will have you lose an hour of your life with this one question.
  4. Know it All. They always say ‘I know mom’ but still manage to not know. Regardless of what they say, ‘I know’ in teenage talk means ‘shut up’
  5. The Switch. When it’s just us we are comfortable and safe to be ourselves. It’s inappropriate and hilarious. The result is us acting goofy and silly. Once a new friend is over, and I’m still me, but they switch on the exasperated embarrassed and too cool persona.
  6. So Gross. If it’s gross I have encountered it throughout motherhood. You expect that to change as they get older, but it doesn’t it just becomes a different gross.
  7. Hygiene. Why do teenagers want to smell like the back of a Chuck E Cheese in the middle of July and McDonald’s onions? This is one thing I will never understand. Just shower! I could fry chicken with all the grease in their hair! In addition to that, that breath is rank. There is a bathroom with a sink AND a shower in addition to that toilet that is often abused.
  8. Dating. Yes you expect this, but what I didn’t expect was the different types of dating. You have talking, going out, crushing, and commitment. I mean what happened to you are dating or you’re not?
  9. Speaking in code. Have you received a text from a teenager and spent an hour just decoding the message? Then you know what I mean. It’s just emojis and random abbreviations. Idk…SMH.
  10. Bathroom Banter. I thought farts and talking shit about your shit was a boy thing or something small children giggled about. I was wrong! Descriptions including size, color, and smell weren’t on my expectation list, yet I still get the updates.
  11. Sex. Yes we know this will happen, eventually, but once you open Pandora’s box and you have open discussions to address questions for your teenager shit gets real. In fact, you may find yourself with a pen and paper taking notes. They know a lot more then we did at their age. Thanks google.
  12. Meanagers. Teenagers are assholes. They are mean, selfish, rude and disrespectful at times. If you didn’t expect to hear loud sighs, see eye rolls, or hear a loud ‘you are ruining my life’ then think again. In all honesty, I don’t know any mom that has not heard the words ‘I hate you’ at least once.
  13. Expensive. We expect our mini me masterpieces to cost us a small fortune, but I didn’t expect raising a teenager would be like paying for a house in cash. Consequently, keeping them in name brand clothes, Nike shoes, make up, hair products, events, extracurricular activities, and the list goes on. It all adds up! The end result is that I feel like I work these days to fund my threefold’s ever growing needs.
  14. Insecurity. I remember being a teen and hating my body and having negative self talk. I just didn’t expect my threefold to have that warped self image. Furthermore, being a teenager is hard and being confident as a teenager is even more difficult. If only they saw what we see.
  15. Mental Health. It would be easy to assume that because I struggled with mental illness starting at a young age that my threefold would too. However, I didn’t expect to be Mommin’ mental illness on the daily. Nor was I prepared for the level of care needed for myself and my threefold.
  16. Guilt. How much mom guilt do you carry? An average amount? None? A lot? I didn’t expect to feel guilty as a mom. I do though. All. The. Damn. Time.
  17. Inappropriate. I have always been pretty inappropriate. Afterall, I didn’t stop using the f word just because I had kids. For example, my jokes containing ‘your mother’ and ‘that’s what she said’ never ceased to be hilarious to me. I didn’t expect that my daughters would have the wildly inappropriate sense of humor they do. It’s true you’re a product of your raising and I’m ok with that.
  18. Individuality. If you were expecting that because they are all girls and all siblings must mean they are similar…WRONG! They may have similar characteristics but they are so different. Therefore, they also need different things from me.
  19. Love. You will never expect the love that comes with being a mom. You will find, that as they grow so does that love. Moreover, you may not always like their behavior, but you will always love them more than anything or anyone else.
Got it from mom

Breathe

In the meantime, relax a bit and enjoy this crazy ride. Besides, soon enough they’ll be off living a life that isn’t reliant upon you. These teenage know it all’s with their hoarder tendencies and inappropriate senses of humor will be raising their own little minions. You’ll be flaunting your bedazzled velour running suit and they’ll be the ones wearing the yoga pants that have never been worn for actual yoga.

I’ve already said it once, however, its worth repeating. You’re doing a great job. You are a good mom. One day, you’ll be laughing and wishing threefold on them. Guess what? They’ll get it. In the end, these mouthy teenage girls will become women bitching about their own little crotch goblins that they created. What about you? In the end, you will be laughing and saying I told you so. The final result will be you saying “Mommin’ ain’t easy is it? That’s right I bought that t-shirt. You can borrow it!” In the meantime stay positive! We’ve got this! ☮️❤️😊~M PS: Follow us on Facebook!

teenage daughters
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Adulting {ish}

Today is #1’s 18th birthday. It’s been a weekend full of partying, celebrating and more reality checks than I wanted to face. Today, my oldest is legally an adult {ish} heavy on the ish. When they say time flies and in a blink of an eye they grow up, it’s true. I barely remember sleepless nights anymore, but it still seems like it wasn’t 18 years ago that this tiny, red headed child was coming into the world. It’s crazy how fast it went by, and even though it’s not like it’s over it’s like grieving a loss. She isn’t a child, she’s an adult, a grown woman capable of making decisions that could change her life. I’m just a bystander, an onlooker, and a resource that she can choose to listen to…or not. That’s scary as hell!

I’m confident that she has been raised to know herself and her path. I’m proud of her for a million reasons. I’m not worried about her, I’m worried about the world around her. She is loving, giving, accepting, inclusive and people pleasing. People take advantage of the nice ones sometimes. They walk on people like #1 then call them naive for seeing the best in people. She is scared to let others see her as someone who has an opinion. She is hard on herself and she thinks perfection is an attainable goal. #1 hates conflict and doesn’t want to disappoint others. Her inner voice is very much her biggest obstacle. I believe in her, but now she has to believe in herself.

My girl, is a strong person who has overcome challenges. She doesn’t see that side of her. She has had trauma, but still has a bright light that she shines on those around her. So much has been stolen from #1, but still she gives without hesitation. She is full of love and a genuine sweetness. That innocence and faith of a child that has never been hurt, but she has been hurt. That amazes me. She hasn’t allowed that past hurt to make her cynical or bitter. She is warm and endearing. She chooses her attitude. She isn’t perfect, and never will be, but I want her to be her. Regardless of who that is I will love her unconditionally.

I’m sad and happy today. I’m sad to know my baby, the first of my threefold has officially graduated into adulthood. I’m happy because I know this means she is going to embark on the adventure she chooses for herself. She is a beautiful person, inside and out. Her light will guide her on this path forward into her future. Mommin’ ain’t easy, but I have to pay myself on the back today too and say I’ve reached a milestone as well. I’m the mom of an adult {ish}. One down, two to go! Stay positive! I’ve got this! ☮️❤️😊~M

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This is YOUR Journey!

I’ve seen the mommy blogs with the cute craft projects and the vegan recipes. I’ve read the posts about connecting with your kids and loving them through bad behavior. I’ve read books about how to be a better parent and even paid for a parenting coach. I’m not one of those moms who can pretend that that mom life is easy. It’s not easy. We’ve established that. There wasn’t a rule book handed to us when we peed on the stick and found out that two lines means two people. Basically, we are all out here raising tiny humans hoping that we don’t screw them up completely. All we do is the best we can.

I definitely don’t have all the answers. I’ve got teenagers and preteens. I’m amazed that I’ve survived this far. With #1 about to turn 18 and graduate high school, I’m realizing I’ve successfully raised one kid to adulthood somehow. Hell, she’s even going to a fancy university with scholarship money and a future goal for life. That’s more than I had at 18, I was not that kid. I must’ve done something right, though I’m not sure what that something was. Ive got two more kids to get there and honestly, I’m not sure how the first one has gotten here. It’s been a hell of a ride. One I won’t be getting off of anytime soon.

My threefold is my heart and soul. Theses girls all are so uniquely different and they all need different things from me as their mom. I’m just winging it. Sometimes I hit it out of the park. On those days I feel like I’m super mom and that no one can top my momma magic. Other days, I’ve been told ‘I hate you and wish you weren’t my mom’ or ‘you are just like dad!’ Those days make me feel like I’m a momster. Kids can make us aim to be our best and they can also bring out our worst. It’s a balancing act.

I have learned a few things from the moms who have it all together. I have implemented a few plays from my parenting coach that have won the day. I also gained a little insight from the books and posts that I found helpful in my mom journey. I’ll save you the money you would spend and give you my informal reviews of some of those that stuck with me through the years.

  1. “You can’t pour from an empty cup”
    • My interpretation: take care of yourself. Self care is NOT going to the Walmart alone to get groceries, stop acting like it is!
  2. “Even the best parents lie to their kids”
    • This is so true! Telling your child your food is spicy because you don’t want to share is a lie. We all lie to our kids to save our sanity, at least a little bit.
  3. “You’re the boss”
    • We wrap our worlds around the needs of little people. At the end sometimes we forget who runs the show. Hold your ground. Don’t negotiate with tiny terrorists.
  4. “Maybe in mom language is ‘no’, but for kids it’s ‘yes’. Don’t get that twisted.”
    • We’ll see and maybe almost always means no or a lack of decision for a parent. Kids however, turn that maybe into a blood oath. They will take that maybe as a way to pester you to the yes they want. Kids know how to manipulate you. It’s better to just say no if you don’t want the harassment.
  5. “Master the art of blackmail and bribery”
    • I can already hear the comments of how little Timmy doesn’t have to be bribed and how we shouldn’t be bribing our kids to get them to do what we want. It’s consequences and rewards. Simple as that blackmail=consequence and bribe=rewards. If little Timmy doesn’t clean his room he doesn’t get ‘x’ if he does clean his room he gets ‘y’. It’s just the sugarcoated version of that. Learn what works to motivate your kids and use it.
  6. “Presence trumps presents”
    • When your child grows up and is looking back at their childhood what do you think will stick out more? The parent who bought them (fill in the blank) or the parent who played barbies on the floor? There are few things that I remember that stand out in the gift department, but I remember the Wednesday night ritual consisted of takeout, watching ‘Survivor’ with my dad just hanging out and laughing.
  7. “Perception is reality. Validation required”
    • Feelings are feelings. They may not be based in truth, but they are uniquely the interpretation of an experience. Being a parent means being understanding and compassionate of a child’s feelings an perspective even when it’s hard to see how they got there, they did. Accept it and help them navigate through their feelings. They can’t be changed just because you disagree.
  8. “You are their advocate and their voice”
    • Speak up and standup for your kids. Sometimes they aren’t able to do it themselves. Show them it’s important to stand firm in what you feel is right. You fight their fights with them.
  9. “You can be their parent and their friend”
    • This one is so controversial. I remember seeing this and it went against everything I had ever heard or thought about parenting. You have to parent them, not placate them. Then I thought about my real friends. The ones who stood by me in the thick of it. They didn’t just coddle me and hold my hand. They told me the truth. Even when I didn’t want to hear it. They smacked sense into me when required. True friends don’t tell you you are right and make you feel better all the time. Sometimes friends make us see how we’ve contributed to our own mess. If you’re a true friend to your child you can parent and be their trusted friend too.
  10. “Every great mom thinks they are screwing it up!”
    • If you are thinking about screwing it up, chances are you’re doing pretty damn good. The fact that you’re worried you aren’t doing well shows you are a good mom who wants to be great. Keep going!

Whether or not my threefold make millions of dollars, become the first woman president, marry a king, or become a famous TikTok influencer means nothing in the way of success. Not to me. I just want my threefold to grow into strong, confident, brave women who know their worth in this great big world. To me, that’s successful parenting. It’s a journey. Last piece of advice…stay positive! We’ve got this! ☮️❤️😊~M