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Mending a Broken Heart

Another emotional week is coming to a close for my threefold. ALL three are home. Hopefully for a long time! It’s been up and down around here. I’m just trying to ride the waves of emotion and be the support my threefold needs me to be. It is a hard job, this mom thing. I will be tending to broken hearts and broken promises for the foreseeable future. Being a teenage girl is hard too.

#1 experienced her first big love over the past year. Her boyfriend {we’ll call him ‘J’} and #1 have been together for about 16 months or so. This is her first long relationship. Many of her firsts happened with ‘J’. She has been in love and it’s been beautiful to watch that young love. I actually really like ‘J’ and know he has been a good support for #1 through a very tumultuous year.

Tonight though, ‘J’ called it quits with #1. Her devastation and complete breakdown was heartbreaking for me to witness. I watched and tried to calm my sweet little girl as she hyperventilated and cried uncontrollably. I wanted to hold her, but during panic attacks she has increased sensitivity to touch. instead I sat on the cold floor with her hushing calmly and telling her that she would be ok, even if she wasn’t ok in that moment, she would be. I felt helpless I wanted to fix it, but there are no magic words to mend a broken heart. Instead, I did the only thing I knew how to do. I tried to calm her insecurities and her feelings of worthlessness.

Instead of sitting on the floor we drove to the gas station down the road. We have chocolate. We have funny tv shows and movies and we have a little heartbreak hotel set up. My newly appointed adult daughter will be sleeping in her mom’s room tonight. She will be comforted with chocolate and inappropriate humor. We will ride the wave.

As I sit writing this little dramatic comedy in the making, I am stealing away my moment to cry knowing this pain will linger with her for a while. I know that the first love and the first heartbreak that usually comes with it will be forever etched in her memory. She is tough. My stick of dynamite in a tiny 4’10” body. She has grown so much and has a bright future ahead that is bound to include more love and more heartbreak. This love will be the beautiful high school story she tells one day to her own child when they experience that first love…and the heartbreak that will break hers to watch. I’m loving her through this one knowing that life goes on and that she won’t allow the heartbreak to break her completely. I’m staying positive because I know she’s got this. I’ve got her…and I’ve got this! ☮️❤️😊~M

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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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Don’t Shame Me for Seeking Help

🚩⚠️ Trigger Warning⚠️🚩

This is my Threefold. This is my threefold. That’s the resounding thought in my head as I sit scared out of my mind because # 3 of my threefold {my youngest daughter age 10} is currently alone in a strange bed. She was admitted early yesterday morning to the psychiatric children’s wing. I am beside myself with anxiety. She is only 10. I can’t be with my baby. This is too surreal. This can’t be happening…again. I’m not ready and she is too little. She’s just a child. She is my baby.

If you have been following for a while you’ll recall my post regarding #2 🚩⚠️ My Child is NOT Attention Seeking. My Child is Seeking Help 🚩⚠️ trigger warning ⚠️🚩 {please do not click this link if you are triggered by self harm or content pertaining to suicide.} this post described my experience with admitting #2 of my threefold {my middle daughter, 13} to a crisis intervention center. Here I am again speaking about the same content and a different kid. I am dealing with the same situation. I guess this is just another day in the life of the trauma drama bipolar momma bear. I am Mommin’ mental illness. I’m here to tell you, this job is hard. I’m not prepared or I’m overly prepared. Either way, this is the really hard part about being a mom. Getting help when you start realizing that you are not able to give your own child the help they need. The worst part is watching them suffer through the pain of their mental illness. They are too young to understand what is happening.

#3 has had a really rough time trying to adapt to my divorce. She is the youngest of my girls and was only 8 when I left her dad. She had begun acting out more prior to the separation. She was running away, displaying anger and struggling dealing with the pandemic. Virtual schooling, lack of interaction with peers and isolation only compounded the underlying issues that were left untreated. I’m sure this is true for a lot of children. I attributed many of her symptoms to the ‘Covid Crazy’ diagnosis. {My personal term for what we were all experiencing during the shutdown}

I was wrong. Her grades fell dramatically with virtual school. I left my husband. I couldn’t continue watching my threefold and I suffer from the actions and inactions of my ex. I needed to get out of that toxic cycle and show my threefold another way. Pro tip: don’t marry a narcissist and if you’re already in that relationship…LEAVE.

#3 had no help with school and with untreated ADHD it was nearly impossible to keep her in her room or in the living room with a laptop listening to some teacher talk about things that were of no interest to her. It was torture for all of my threefold, but she was in 2nd grade and lacked any self-discipline. It was obvious she was missing fundamental learning. It wasn’t until later I would realize that her education had been hijacked and her foundation building years of reading, comprehension, writing and math were stolen from her when her education went virtual during 2nd and 3rd grade.

When I left my ex, I sought therapy for my children and I. I was aware that my divorce would have a massive impact on their mental health {no diagnoses for my threefold yet other than #2, who was diagnosed with ODD and ADHD at the time which was untreated} I knew I would also need a sounding board myself to vent my frustrations and work through my personal feelings on leaving that relationship and the implications that decision would have on my threefold. We have maintained that therapy throughout these past couple of years. This led to psychiatric evaluations and medication therapies to help my threefold and I balance out our brain chemistry.

My threefold did deteriorate more post separation, but for reasons that I didn’t expect. I was right. They had needed treatment and therapy earlier, but due to my own untreated mental illness and the psychological abuse we endured, we swept our issues under the rug. They had needed help for years, but we all were too scared to ask for it. We knew how that conversation would end. A dad-diagnosis and more hell to deal with. It wasn’t until I got them help and they were safe to express how they always had felt that the trauma begun to unravel and the symptoms became more prevalent. They had been forcing themselves to cover the mental illness as a way to keep the peace in our unstable lives. I will forever have guilt over not seeking help and leaving sooner.

Currently, #3 is diagnosed as having depression, ADHD and Oppositional Defiance Disorder. I am familiar with the nuances of these diagnoses. I’m sure ODD will change into disruptive mood dysregulation disorder {DMDD} but what I don’t know for sure is if she will be saddled with the diagnosis of bipolar disorder that her sisters and I have been told we suffer from. At her age, that is unlikely even if she is presenting at this age just as #2 did. Same diagnoses and same behaviors. I should’ve known this would happen. I was in denial that all of my threefold would be cursed with my genetics. what I hadn’t prepared for was how difficult it would be to see my threefold spiral into periods of depression that make them feel like they need to hurt or even delete themselves to fix their problems. Life isn’t supposed to be this hard at ten, thirteen or seventeen.

#3 is a spunky girl who loves riding her bike, playing outside, jumping rope, TikTok, martial arts, doing crafts and stitch {from the Disney movie.} She has a hard time with making friends, because she is extremely bossy and territorial. She isn’t scared of a fight. She is pretty aggressive when she is upset and angry. Punching, hitting, kicking, throwing and screaming are her go to behavior when she gets upset. She is destructive when she is angry. These reactions and outbursts are mostly disproportionate to the situation. A simple request for her to go to bed, take medication, clean a mess or her room, and going to school can spiral into a knock down drag out fight from #3. Then after the aggression is the comedown. Tears, guilt, shame and regret mark the feelings from the fallout. It’s hard to parent, but I can only imagine it’s harder for her to understand what is happening inside her brain. She ends up feeling like she is just a bad kid, that this is just how she will always feel, she can’t be helped, and that she would be better off if she was no longer here.

These past couple of years have been quite the ride on the bipolar express. From #2’s struggles for nearly a year to help her get back on recovery road. A lot of issues with #1. More therapy hours than I can count and a million other issues that have come up 2021 was a hell of a ride. I was looking forward to a bit of peace and to be swimming in calmer waters. Instead I’m back to drowning.

I guess because I knew what to expect after the inpatient treatments that #2 underwent that I would be better equipped to handle #3’s admission. It’s strange, but this time it’s worse than before. Before I didn’t know how difficult that road to recovery would be. I didn’t know what I was up against. I was forced to take the uncertainty and roll with it. Sometimes it rolled over me, but I made it. More importantly #2 made it. This time is different.

I am more anxious now knowing what happens when your child goes to inpatient care. I know now that it’s a long and hard process. I know now that quick fixes don’t exist. I know this next week or two will not be the only time we need a higher level of care. I am uniquely familiar with the amount of time and energy that will be needed to make sure we are getting help. More than anything else, I know the toll it will take on my threefold and I as we walk this path again. I know that we could have the domino effect that results in relapse. This all makes me even more scared.

Before you go to judging my child and I let me tell you some facts. ADHD and ODD are marked by impulsive behavior and an inability to regulate emotions properly. My daughter doesn’t need to have ‘her ass beat’ or ‘taught a lesson’. She doesn’t need to be told, nor I that she is ‘a brat’, ‘a terrorist’, ‘spoiled’, or that she is ‘attention seeking’. She is not going to get better by being told how bad she is. I’m not going to parent better because I’m told that I’m screwing it up or how this is my fault. I am perfectly capable of beating myself up, I definitely don’t need the outside help with that.

I am sure there are a million things that I could do differently, but the fact that my child will suffer from mental illness won’t change. Fun fact. My parenting didn’t cause my child to have a mental illness, my genetics did. I’m positive that my actions and reactions can exacerbate her symptoms if I don’t handle it properly. I will be the first to admit that I have mishandled and missed the mark on occasion while mommin’ mental illness. After all, my handbook on the rules of parenting was just as nonexistent as yours.

I have sat patiently and responded with calmness while being screamed at by my own child about how much she hates me and wished I was dead. I’ve been cursed at, kicked, hit at, and had things thrown at me. I’ve questioned my own parenting skills and abilities to manage my threefold’s mental illness. I’ve held my child after her outburst and told her it would be ok as she cried and apologized. I’ve taken tv’s, tablets, social outings, and the millions of other things she enjoys. She doesn’t care. She will tell you herself that those consequences don’t phase her or make her want to try to better. I get notes home from school about behavior and lack of effort. She doesn’t care. She has been in therapy for 18 months but I can’t make her participate or use the skills. It doesn’t work for her. Not when she is emotional and can’t regulate those emotions. She just does, without thoughts of how it will work out later. If you remind her of the consequences she will scream that she doesn’t care. So you can tell me I’m not hard enough on her. What do you do when hard doesn’t work, soft doesn’t work, and suddenly it’s like a ticking time bomb you know could go off at any time and you can’t change it?

I’ve tried everything from attention to ignoring, rewards and consequences, behavior charts, parenting coaches, family sessions and a million other things. I’m not sitting back just hoping this phase of life is just that, a phase. I need to find a solution but I need help. I can admit that. I can see this is beyond my own abilities. I don’t offer the help she needs. It’s time for drastic measures. Even if that wasn’t what I wanted to admit. Even if I tried amongst the recommended higher level of care. I just didn’t want this for her, not this young.

For those that are thinking I couldn’t handle my child and dropped her off at a facility to allow someone else to fix this problem for me. Think again. I was told she would need to be assessed before she could return to school after she had an outburst in class because she was frustrated with feelings of not doing an assignment correctly. It wasn’t by choice that I was in that same waiting room with #3 as I had been with #2 only 15 months prior shortly after this whole journey began. It was not my intention to to have my daughter admitted for defiant behaviors followed by suicidal ideation. Mental illness doesn’t discriminate based on age, it only presents differently. I knew she needed help, but I didn’t expect that they would be admitting her to the children’s unit of the psychiatric facility that my middle daughter had been a patient of during her first admission.

This battle of bedtime, cleaning up messes and reasons I couldn’t understand that seemed like nothing at all, resulted in these explosive outbursts. The behaviors have been increasing since she was 8. What once happened only a couple times per year has now been a couple of times per week for months. I didn’t throw my hands up and decide I couldn’t deal with her behavior anymore. Though believe me I’m not going to lie and say it hadn’t crossed my mind to do this or something else sooner.

I could write for hours and spit statistics at everyone and bore them with the details of the diagnoses from the clinical perspective. I don’t do that not because those facts don’t matter, but because it’s more personal and real than the statistics will give. Instead I share my personal story, the stories of my threefold. I don’t share for sympathy or for attention. I don’t share because I want people to feel sorry for us. I share our lives and our experiences because we have lived in the shadows for too long. I share because the stigma surrounding mental illnesses is that we are weak, lazy, attention seeking, and use our diagnoses as excuses. I share not to make myself or my threefold vulnerable to that type of scrutiny. I share this for the other parents caring for children suffering from mental illness who feel like they are alone in the fight. I share for the people who suffer. The isolation and the hiding our struggles doesn’t make this journey easier. I don’t want to feel like I’m not allowed to seek help for my threefold when they need it because people around me will judge me. There are too many parents who have the shame of this stigma surrounding their lives that their children are suffering silently. That shame will not make us more likely to seek help. I can only hope that sharing our story and struggles can help stomp out the stigma. We can’t keep silencing those that suffer. The stakes of that silence are too high.

Stay positive. We’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

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Goal Getter: December

I’m mixing things up a bit this month and setting the bar high! December is the final month of 2021 and that leaves exactly 31 days to finish up this year and I plan to finish STRONG! I am excited about planning this month’s goals and I’m excited about closing out this final month of 2021 with a BANG! The momentum and excitement for this month is all leading up to the amazing year I will have in 2022! I’m ready for that new chapter, but before I start planning the new year I need to wrap up this year with my December Goal Getter plan of action. Are you with me? Hell yeah!

First things first! Download my Goal Getter Workbook to create your own plan of action for the month!

December is a time where we usually get wrapped up {no pun intended} in the hustle bustle of the holidays and forego all goals, agendas and anything that we had set our sights on. I believe that it should be the opposite. This should should be when we are amped up the most to achieve those goals we set 11 months prior, because when we reach them we can have that feeling of accomplishment and the satisfaction that comes with seeing a goal to completion. I really don’t know a much better feeling than the feeling of setting a goal and reaching it! It’s a feeling of self satisfaction and contentment. It’s pride, confidence, hope, and accomplishment that comes together making you see yourself as the ultimate bad ass you are. What better way to end this year than to end it with that?

If you chose to download the workbook, AWESOME! That workbook will be handy to use throughout the year. If not, well you’re on your own. {just kidding, you can make your own template and follow along} December is the perfect time to go back to those big goals you made 11 months ago and see what you’ve got left to mark off that list. Some may be old news if you haven’t looked in a while. Others may be completed. Some may need some scaling adjustments. Some may need to be completely erased as irrelevant. Regardless if you have 1, 5, or 10 goals you want to accomplish it’s possible to start here and go after them!

My Personal Plan of Action:

At the beginning of the year, I will be honest and say I was in ‘survival mode’. Goals weren’t my “thing” and I was more of a yay it worked out or , damn it it didn’t! I didn’t really put much intention or thought into how my actions could give me more yay moments and less of the damn it moments. I was on ‘auto-pilot’ just hoping for the best. Guess what? That wasn’t working for me. It hadn’t worked for me in the past 37 years and it wasn’t going to start working for me anytime soon. So I made a change. In June, I decided to become more intentional with my day to day actions and began setting small, attainable goals that I could reach. Slowly I began to challenge myself to reach greater heights and chase my dreams. Thankfully, over the last 6 months my life has nearly done a 180• from where I was starting out the year. The person I can thank for that? Myself. Ultimately, you are the only person in control of your actions, attitude and aspirations. {Having positive influences and people supporting you is definitely a bonus!}

In July, I made my goals for the remainder of the year. 6 months after those around me. {Fashionably late, per usual} You can actually look at that first goal getter challenge I set out on here: Wellness Challenge: July 21 Days to Positivity I never thought that this one month would change everything I did from that day forward. It did. It changed my life. The goals I started with are still relevant to how I now live day to day. My threefold would probably tell you how boring it is to ride with me in a car since I’ve traded in my music most days for motivational You Tube compilations and TedX Talks! Something I would’ve thought laughable in years past. Or how I meditate and force them to meditate with me sometimes. Even how I fully believe in the power of visualization and manifesting your best life. Yep, I’m not going to lie, I’ve gotten pretty encompassed in all the ways to get my goal getter get up and go…well going.

My list in July was extensive. Four handwritten pages of goals kind of extensive with all the things I hoped to accomplish the remainder of the year. My success set up to become a happier and better me. I broke them up into these categories:

  • Attitude
  • Creativity
  • Career
  • Family
  • Romantic
  • Health
  • Financial
  • Personal/Self-Care

Out of four pages of goals here is the list that I have yet to accomplish:

  • Attitude – 5/5 Goals Achieved
  • Creativity – 5/6 Goals Achieved
    1. Monetize my blog/social media
  • Career – 11/12 Goals Achieved
    1. Get rewarded financially for performance
  • Family – 6/8 Goals Achieved
    1. Quality time spent with my threefold
    2. Schedule a family night event twice per month
  • Romantic – 3/6 Goals Achieved
    1. Spend quality time with ‘E’
    2. Overthinking/Assuming
    3. Holding Grudges
  • Health -3/4 Goals Achieved
    1. Quit Smoking
  • Financial – 1/4 Goals Achieved
    1. Budget
    2. Save
    3. Donate
  • Personal/Self Care- 9/10 Goals Achieved
    1. Free myself from my past guilt and move forward into the future.

If my math is right this shows I had 55 goals I wanted to accomplish by the end of the year. So far I’ve accomplished 40 of those. Not too shabby for a girl who didn’t even have a plan last January! However, this leaves me with 15 that I want to see through to completion by 12/31/21. I’m exhausted already! No. I’m not, I’m pumped! I’m a goal getter! I’ve got this! So now it’s time for the plan. Time to break these goals down into chunks of doable and actionable pieces that will see me to the finish line!

I can mark the one off my list for creativity. Today I launched my first download for the Goal Getter Workbook! This is my first real money driven effort for my blog! Profitable or not, it’s an achievement and an amazing way to kick off my month! The next is not totally in my hands, but I’m looking forward to a raise in the coming weeks at work for all the bad-assery I’ve displayed this year! So that will be something I can check off my list this month too! As for the Family goals – I have a couple things in the works planned for my threefold and I to have some QT as soon as we get over this Corona Virus infestation that has kept us cooped up in quarantineville for the past week. I also think I can knock out my romantic goal of some quality time with ‘E’ that isn’t just Covid cuddleupits while cat napping watching crime documentaries, although that has been a highlight of quarantine! The deeper of those 3 goals are resentments, grudges, overthinking and assumptions. This is something that will take constant effort and mindfulness on my part. My anxiety tends to lean towards catastrophizing even the smallest disagreements and distorts them into these out of proportion reactions. I have come a long way with this but I know that improvements can be made and I will definitely work to stay mindful of rational and irrational thoughts. The dreaded ‘quit smoking’ this isn’t something I have wanted to do. That’s just plain honest. It’s my vice. My coping mechanism. My reward. My appetite suppressant. My stress reliever. BUT as much as it’s been my crutch for the past 15 years {yes 15 years} it’s time to pack it up. I went three days without a cigarette while sick with the ‘rona. The longest time I’ve not smoked in 10 years. Sure, I could’ve said ‘haste la vista’ then but I wasn’t mentally prepared to say my farewells. My mind wasn’t in it. I’m there now. That first cigarette after 3 days tasted like burnt coffee creamer, stale crackers and old mints. I’m over it. If I can thank Covid for anything it will be that it may have ruined my love for the taste of a menthol cigarette forever. I haven’t openly put out there that I’m a smoker, but now that it’s here in black and white I can’t deny it. If I can end this year as a non-smoker then I will be so proud of myself. I’ve tried before and failed, but I haven’t had a blog post to hold me to it. Here’s to that! Financial goals are tricky for me, especially this month with Christmas being my holiday. I love getting the gifts for my threefold and watching their faces as they light up with excitement. This year has been a struggle financially in general due to all of the unforeseen medical expenses and bills, divorce, new home, lost time at work and general life maintenance. I am resourceful if nothing else, and stubborn so I have those two things on my side. It’s best to finish strong. I’ll put my $5.00/day that I would purchase my cigarettes with into an account for some rainy day savings to start. I’ll make a budget and formulate a doable plan to stick to. For donations, we will find a way to give to those less fortunate by way of volunteering time at a local charity. That final one in personal/self-care is tricky. I am working on manifesting my desired result in finally settling a peaceful resolution and tie up the loose ends of my past. I am also working through my feelings in therapy and finding ways I can let go of my resentment and hurt from my past, along with my personal guilt. I will continue to do both. In addition I will work on not giving my energy, positive or negative, to my past. I will allow whatever feelings and thoughts to surface and rise but not allow it to dwell in my headspace or overpower my reactions. I will acknowledge and dismiss. No lingering. That’s tough, but it will be awesome to see how much more positivity can grow when it isn’t being stomped out by the negative weight of the past. And that’s a wrap! That’s it, folks! That’s my plan of action for December! I hope you have downloaded My Goal Getter Workbook and choose to end your year with as much hope and positivity as you started it with! ☮️❤️😊~M