Love Does Make the World Go Round

Yes, I have been absent. For a very, very long time. Let’s just say that horrible, and not-so-horrible, things have happened in the time I have been gone. And at this moment? I am happy. Truly happy. Even with a sick baby (fever and refusing to eat, which may be due to teething) and missing work, I know it’ll be okay. It’s been rough, and there has been ups and downs, but I have to say that having someone who loves you makes it all bearable.

But of course, then comes fear. The fear of it ending. The fear of being hurt. The fear of being betrayed. It is never fun to even think about these as they’ll make your stomach twist, your skin break out in a sweat, and a glaze of pure terror slide over your face. But, is it worth it? After being broken, I swear no. But now? Once I have it? It is. It is worth it one thousand times.

I have been waiting, patiently and not so patiently, for a year. A year I have loved from a distance and watched others being chosen. A year, in which I have had my heart broken by him twice. But now? Now that he is mine and he is there for me? Worth it. Worth it a hundred broken hearts and a million tears shed. The ups and downs? I am looking forward to them. The laughs, shared moments, and memories to come? Something I yearn for. It is never easy. It is never perfect. But I know that because I refuse to give up or back down, I will not give it up. But…once again the fear comes creeping in. What if he does? What if he walks away? What if he decides I am not for him after all? Ahhh, but we must try. Because a life of what-ifs is almost harder to bear than trying and failing.

Toughing It Up

Oh, look! It's Cousin It!
Mama lost her shit

Kids, being sick on and off for three weeks, have me exhausted. Drained. Weak from hunger and dehydration as I neglect myself, and emotional.

I had all six this past weekend and was so happy to have them, but the sheer exhaustion and stress was almost too much for me.

I ended Sunday evening naked, screaming and crying in front of the bathroom mirror, while attempting to brush my hair out as days of neglect had tangled my two and a half foot long hair into a ratted mess that I was ripping through with my brush. In a fit of pure rage and a mad rush to get this OFF OF ME, I bundled a towel around me and ran into my bedroom. Snatching up the scissors, I dashed back to the bathroom, discarded the towel on the floor and flipped my hair over. Chopping through my hair ferociously, tears streaming upside down and into my hair line, I watched it fall to the tile floor.
A brief moment of fear and a thought, “what have I done?!” flitted through my mind. Then I took a breath, placed the scissors on the counter, and stood up straight. I glanced briefly into the mirror, then climbed into the tub of hot water and soaked and scrubbed and washed it all away.
Not until I got out and looked did a smile go across my face. No, it doesn’t look great, but the pure relief of that burden, both emotional and physical, finally lifting off and giving me a chance to BREATH…that was unforgettable.

And though we are still all sick (I with a fever and chills and a nasal infection) made into town. To work and to school. To daycare.
Holding on until three, when I can finally leave, is what I am just holding on to. The thought of a messy home, diapers to change, a meal to make, crying children, fever and chills and doing it all alone makes me shudder. But at least I will be home.

Making a Million

One of my favorites from her collection!

I think we all dream of it. Finding that niche, that job, that way to make it.
Obviously it has been a thing of mine lately and something I am set on. The entrepreneurship of it all. A way to creatively make a living for us. It’s being driven by the lack of work for me lately, and a desperation to get myself out of this hole.

And guess what, I am now home for another week with sick kids. My three year old last night, so I arranged a babysitter for him. At 11, I get the call from daycare concerning my other two who are now sick and I have to go pick them up.
So between diapers, wipes, gas, paying the babysitter and my time…I came out over $100 short today. The days where you spend more than you make (and not by choice) are always hard. Needless to say, there were a lot of tears cried on my way to pick my three year old up and on the way home.

I don’t even know what to do. There are answers out there, but not any new ones. I have read blogs, websites, talked to people…and it seems like unless you already have the capital to invest, there are no opportunities.
I wish desperately I could come up with something new. Something creative and fun and bright and something that people want, but unfortunately it has never been my strong suit.

But here, enjoy these amazing creations and I hope you can find it in yourself to support this mother and wife and her beautiful creations!

https://www.facebook.com/MaeBellaCreations/

What’s the next step?

This is real

Okay, you held it together. You quit your job and got your GED. You are in college now. You have a good part time job that you really like. But you know it’s temporary. You know it won’t last and, more importantly, it won’t get you to where you want to be.

If you want to buy that home, buy that rig that isn’t 20 years old, want a yard and a dog and an office/library, you know you have to pick yourself up again and soldier on.
And this time, though it isn’t as hard mentally, emotionally or physically, is trying in it’s on way because now it’s just time. Waiting to finish your education. Waiting to see what opportunities you can dig up for yourself. Waiting for the education and knowledge you need to be able to find something that will get you to this next goal. And you know, realistically, it is a lot of time. Just a waiting game until you are capable enough to move forward. And it is almost harder in some areas as you have come so, so far in such a short time and yet, still have so far to go.

So, bide your time. Listen to Black Veil Brides. Do birthday’s and the flu and cleaning and laundry and figure out and balance bills and rent. You are surviving now. It’s miraculous now to even do that with almost ease compared to what it was like last year.
Wait for spring. For something amazing to happen. For a degree. For a job. For the kids to get older so it is a little easier. Take a step back and look back. Reflect. Enjoy the now (as hard as that is) because just LOOK. Look at YOU! You did it. You are making it. You have a home and a van and enough money to even buy a few gifts. Take a breath and cherish this sweet, fresh day. The birds actually out for the first time in months. Those little hands grasping yours. Take a breath and love it. Because you are fearfully and wonderfully made.

Grit Among Desperation

There are so many single moms who struggle and fight and never give up. There are so many who pray, cry and stay up at night brainstorming for a way to make it. Just to provide homes for their children, food, a reliable vehicle, and the necessities. And they view that as being “comfortable” and even well-off.

So many people never realize that many single moms make less than $2,00o a month. My income caps out at $1,300. I pay rent, a court fine, my phone, internet, child support, buy diapers, wipes, toilet paper, laundry soap and quarters to wash clothes and am so, so lucky if I have $20 at the end of the month.

I am sure you have searched frantically on Google, Pinterest, read websites and blogs on how to “make it” as a single mom with children and just feel overwhelmed and defeated. You know those “Here’s How I Made 6 Figures In A Month As A Single Parent…”, all the “tips” for starting your own business, how to save up and invest by not buying those $5 coffees every day (HA! Like I have even a dollar to spend on coffee every day!) and they all just seem to be making fun of you because you don’t have a clue, or an extra $10, to invest in anything. You have no marketable skills. No training or knowledge. And see no way of ever becoming that success story. I am right there.

Today is my 27th birthday. I have been single two years. I don’t get child support. I own a 1994 Plymouth Voyageur that was donated to me. I live in a two bedroom apartment with a crotchety man living above me who stomps his feet on the floor every time my children play loudly. I have no yard. I owe 3k in back child support. I have no credit. I work part time for minimum wage while going to college. I have six children total. Three I see every other weekend, three I have full custody off and who have no father at all in their lives. I have to borrow money to pay rent this month.

What do I do? Now that you know the highlights of my story. How do I make it in a town of 1,600 people? How do I become a success? How do I make it through this and provide a wonderful life for my children? I need an answer. And if you are reading this, I hope you have one or, if you need one, that you get it.

I am not giving up. Because I can’t. But I don’t know where to turn or what to do. I will keep on. I will try to take one moment at a time. I will try to keep breathing and loving and moving forward in hopes that one day things will be wonderful for us.

WebMD, Help Me!

It’s been another rough week. Like, right from Monday. I tried. I have really tried.
It’s been some stuff at work I have been dealing with, but also this uncontrollable fury just bubbling and boiling out of me. Frustration. Rage. A set jaw, the devil in your eye and an itching and clinging feeling crawling all over your skin.

So, experts of the interwebs, what is going on with me? I feel like I am going to have a violent and vocal outburst because of what I am feeling. And I really, really can’t afford to do that. Is it depression? Stress? Being cooped up with children, work, school and never any down or me time? Is it the winter and cold? Lack of sun? Some one has to have an idea of what I could do or get that could calm this bitter rage just festering inside of me.

I am miserable to be around, I am about to the point where I am going to tell my boss to fuck off (even though there is no way in hell I can afford that) and just do something else entirely. I am even struggling to maintain interest in school, even though it is the one thing I look forward to and love. I am beginning to resent it and get so frustrated at it.

Maybe a break would do me well. But I can’t exactly afford one. Time or money-wise. I feel like I need to just eat and sleep and rest and have fun and dance and let go a little of everything that is keeping me wound up and so anxious.

Stronger than I think

It’s been rough. Really rough. It’s been a while since I had a genuinely bad time and going through another one has made me think back on how I have survived so much.

Everyone always tells you that being a single mom is hard work, that I am so strong and brave and amazing for working, going to school and taking care of my children. But I can’t say I ever really believe them.

Because they don’t see the tears I cry. They don’t see me losing my temper. They don’t see me struggling just to keep the living room picked up. They don’t see me sobbing at my filthy apartment because I am too tired to clean it. They don’t see me struggling to come up with a healthy and filling meal for my children while I go hungry because I am too tired to eat.
I know that those struggles and the fact that I keep showing up at work and school every day, that my children are still healthy and fed and loved means I am succeeding. That I am strong. But I always feel that I am failing. That I am falling further and further behind. That I am not doing all I should or that I can do to make life as good as it could be for us.

I feel like I need help. I am drowning, and can’t do it alone. Though I know I have been through so much worse and this is nothing in comparison.

When we struggle, how we struggle, and how we deal with the struggle makes us who we are. It’s just facing it that takes the most out of us.