Tag Archives: Family

About a Girl



Hey you,

It’s been a while.  I think it’s been at least a couple of years , but to be honest, I have lost track of time.  I really don’t think you will ever read this, but sometimes, just sometimes, the internet does crazy things.  You may be sitting there one day, somewhere, maybe having a cup of coffee, and you may see this.

Sixteen years ago today, we sat together, in a hospital room.  It’s almost right on the dot of when she was born and I had my first look at our daughter.  Our first child, and at 21, I remember joking saying now we were on a time limit and I would have to have another child in two years.  We did it, too.  Crazy.

I want to tell you about our daughter, though to be honest, I will refer to her as my daughter from here on out.  You see, you maybe had two years with her, maybe three (though I am truly not sure how present you were in those years and I don’t mean that in a bad way.  We’ll get to that later), before we went our separate ways.  You missed a lot, and I know you know this.

She is really amazing.  She sometimes will do something, a look or a mannerism, that reminds me of you.  It blew my mind the first time that I saw it because it was you.  Don’t get me wrong, over the last sixteen years her and I have had some differences, but I can also say we have a great relationship.  She watched Sailor Moon with me, and Fruits Basket. She loved all the geeky things that I did and she has an inner strength that is so admirable.  In sixth grade, she dyed her hair rainbow.  I would have never had the courage to do that.  I’m proud of her courage and inner strength.  She can do some things better, like the dishes, but if I got to check off the things that I would want out of her for her life, I would put inner courage and strength above dishes.

She draws.  She draws so well and I don’t know how she does it.  She is so talented with what she can do in such little time.  I remember you used to draw a lot, and I think she probably got that genetically from you.

She’s funny, too.  I remember you had a way with words, and could make these boring stories really interesting.  I would give you credit for that, but I happen to think I am pretty funny and a decent storyteller.  I am taking the credit for that.

She is smart.  She may not give herself enough credit in this area, but she is.  She is also in Colorguard in the Marching Band in high school.  She does halftime at the football games, marches in parades, and last year they were the State Champions.  I still have the newspaper clipping on the refrigerator.


I could go on forever, telling you about everything she is, and how brilliant she is to be around, but I imagine you don’t have much time.  I am going to take some time for me to talk to you, and please, finish it until the end.

I can’t tell you how angry I was when we split.  It wasn’t because of the ending of the relationship, that could be seen from a mile away, but more angry about you leaving them.  I tried everything, even court, to have you just be present. It was never about the support, because let’s be honest, you and jobs weren’t really a thing, but more to put visitation on paper.  I thought then that they would get to know you, but you found ways around that too.  I may never understand why you did other things, or decided to just not be, but I have stopped trying to understand.

The last time we talked, you told me it was my fault that they didn’t want to talk to you.  You wanted me to sign some paper absolving you of financial responsibility, but I wouldn’t.  I won’t take you back to court.  I am not one for wasting my time and I know what happens.  When you told me it was my fault, I saw red, I yelled, and I honestly don’t know what I said after that.  I’m sorry.  I’m sorry I yelled, and I am sorry that I got angry.  I have been over my anger for years.

You see, I spent years, many years, doing just the opposite of what you said.  I covered for your extended absences, I covered when you would show up for a few weeks and then leave.  There were times you would say you were picking them up and they would wait, just wait, and you wouldn’t show.  I would come up with the excuses, and sometimes have their anger put on me, but I understood.  The last time, when you wanted to write to them, I gave them the option because they were old enough to make decisions.  They made that call, not I.  It wasn’t my fault.  I think they just didn’t feel the need to communicate with someone who never really made an effort to communicate with them.

Please don’t think that they are sad, or anything.  Oh, they lead awesome lives.  They smile, they laugh, they have so many friends and so many people that love them.  M and I may not be together anymore, but M’s family still treat them as if they were blood.  They dropped things off for her today, and M’s mom made dinner (something that she makes that L loves).  They are so loved, that someone is moving around the world to be with all of us.  That is how amazing, how wonderful, of a person that she is.  The boy’s post is coming in a couple of weeks, but he is also included in that. Imagine that, how incredible, that someone loves us all so much that they want to leave things behind to come here.

I’m not angry anymore.  In fact, thank you.  Thank you, because even though it is her day for presents, I really have the best one of all and I couldn’t have done it without you.  Thank you for helping me create them, create her, because I couldn’t imagine life without her.  Thank you as well, for leaving, if you couldn’t be what they deserve.  Sometimes I wonder if I am good enough, if I am doing a good job, but I know I do the best I can.  I hope you have a wonderful life, and find some happiness, as I have.




September 25, 2014 · 10:13 pm

The Easter the Almost Wasn’t

I almost lost myself today, friends.  Today was Easter, and I decided to have it at my house, even though my mom’s house is now open.  I figured since it was K’s first meat day, we could celebrate here with all the meat and not just ham.  I am not too much of a ham person, to be honest.

I woke up before Girl2, but not before K.  Girl2 came down and sure enough, we had chicken for breakfast. Girl2, the Boy and Girl1 and went through their baskets (the Easter Bunny was a bit lazy this year so there was no basket hiding).  We had chicken and potatoes for breakfast and the prepared for the day ahead.

The reason we have had holidays here is not due to tradition, but rather a falling out has occurred that has made the family not all be able to gather together.  I won’t get into that here, but it is a point of the story for today.  My mom told me she would be here at 2, so I figured 2:30-3.  See, I was planning the cooking around this as well as the planned activities for the children (yearly Easter egg hunt).  So as it got closer to 3, I had K give a call on over to see when they would be here.  She talked to my mom and she said it would be some time, because she still had to go  to my brother’s house first.  

I cannot lie to you.  I was angry.  This wasn’t the first time that planned activities have been held up because of going to my brothers house.  J’s last birthday was a prime example, where she was late and almost didn’t come, and when she did, it was much later than I wanted.  Now, my brother has cut himself off from the family, except for my mom, and that’s fine; we all make our choices.  However, I don’t like being on hold, and not just me, but everyone else in the family as well.

I was doing my rage thing, when K told me, “You know, other people have far worse Easter Sundays.  Some don’t have baskets, or dinners, or anything.”  I think she was explaining it more to Girl2, but I also think it was meant for me. 

I decided there and then that I wasn’t going to let this throw me off. I was going to do what we had planned.  We hid eggs, Julie found them.  Then Julie and I hid the eggs and everyone else found them.




It was like The Hunger Games.  The Boy pushed Girl1 into the bushes for an egg.

We started our cooking, I had potatoes, K had meat.


And a beer

We got dolled up and took pics!





Posing a threat!

They came just in time to eat.  We carved some meat, ate the meal, my mom brought over like 100 more eggs.  Really.  This was how tired I was of hiding eggs:


I got really lazy.

The kids (and Uncle Sal) had fun finding them and it was amazing.  There was much laughter, tears from laughter really.  And some great pictures.




This is just epic.  Look at all that radiating beauty.

Here is the point of all of this.  Holidays don’t need to be on a schedule.  They happen when they happen.  I am lucky enough to be able to be surrounded by people I love, people who love me, abundance of food, and it all happens when it is supposed to happen.  It was a beautiful day, as it was a meant to be.  There was no need for any anger.  Love heals.

“Groove is in the heart.” – Deee-LIte


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Chasing Memories

I am going to preface this by saying that this will be all over the place.  I apologize to you for that.  I usually like to have an idea and just write it out and see where it goes.  Tonight though, I have so many things in my head.

Today was somber and beautiful.  It was wonderfully warm, windy, but a warm wind.  Today we laid my Uncle Bob to rest.  Girl1 came with me; she had never been to a military funeral.  Uncle Bob served for over 20 years, so it was no surprise to me that he would be buried with military honors.

There is a beauty to it; a beauty that breaks your heart.  As soon as the guns salute, the bugle plays, you feel it deep inside.  The flag ceremony and presentation is somber.  It seems like such a contradiction that such a beautiful day such sad activities were going on.

It was a beautiful service.  I am honored to have been able to witness it.  I won’t write too much more about that since I have posted my homage.  

While we were there, my immediate family did stop at my Grandparent’s grave on my mother’s side.  They are also buried there.  We set off, and I found it right away.  

Oh, my Grandmother.  A complete force to be reckoned with.  She taught me how to shuffle cards and play Boggle.  I remember countless hours of just playing cards, or games of Boggle and her winning every single time.  I asked her once, “Why won’t you let me win?”.  She just looked at me and put down the cards.  Her answer was this, “I won’t let you win.  One day you will, and when that day comes it will be because you beat me and not because I handed it to you.”  This, I still carry with me to this very day.  If I want something, I will have to work for it.  I did beat her one day and I was so proud of myself because she was untouchable at Rummy or Boggle.  I can also still shuffle a mean deck of cards.

My Grandfather, well, he was also someone who taught me a lot of things.  He taught me that very manly men could get very much into soap operas.  Also, he introduced me to many of the wonders of the game shows.  He loved word searches and crosswords, and though I never picked up the crosswords, I still enjoy word searches.  He made dinner every night, and I remember many times of him helping me with my bike, teaching me to put my chain on.

When we were leaving, we saw one gravestone that had rocks on it, with a card tied around it.  It was a windy day and the card was open.  It said “Happy 55th anniversary, I love you.”  My sister cried, and I held her.  I understood, the overall emotion, the simple beauty of love that would have someone tying a card to a gravestone, because to them it isn’t just a gravestone.  It is their love.  It is their Uncle, it is their Grandparents.  

Tonight, I will unwind after the rest of my day, which involved working.  I had the perfect project for today though.  It involved calling people and connecting.  One woman made me cry (which wasn’t hard today) because she told me that I made the difference for her.  I had an email in my mailbox from an agent who spoke to their Insured and they were so grateful that a large company could have so much compassion.  Today was all about compassion, humanity, and understanding that we are all one.


image from http://downdogyoga.net/ 


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To Kingsholm!

Hello, my dear friends!  It’s time for a total geek out post because it has been far too long.  My Tricksy and Most Gentle DM is preparing for her upcoming wedding in June and I thought to myself that I should start a game.  I have never Dm’d before, so I must admit I was a bit nervous.  I think of the job as a very serious one.  You are in control; how the players feel about the game could have a lot to do with how the DM is doing.  It’s storytelling, and a need to push things along at a certain pace, to keep them entertained.  Basically, it’s Morgan Freeman.  I also wanted to do the Tricksy (and Most Gentle) DM justice.  She has schooled me in D&D and I love playing with her.  I figure though that if I can get my skills honed, I may be able to give her a break and allow her to just play when she is ready.

Also, before I begin (and I admit, this may be a longish post), I would like to say a few words about how D&D has really brought a lot to the table (literally and figuratively).  Playing this game has given me something to do with my older children, and my youngest is going crazy trying to find ways to play.  In fact, she helped me with the prepping of this, but more of that later.  There will also be a lot of pictures.  So, let’s begin.

About a month or so ago, I decided to throw this together.  I found an adventure online, purchased the pdf (it’s the first in a set of 3) and decided we were going to play.  K, the Boy, and Girl1 were in, and I decided to also ask one of Girl1’s friends who I am very fond of to join us.  He agreed and everyone (including Tricksy DM) came over to play a mock session to help Pedro build his character and do a one shot on how to actually play it.  It was a good time had by all and Grace was able to make an appearance.  Oh, that cheeky girl.

So, once that was done, I assigned the homework of everyone sending me their backstory, so I could put something together.  You see, I wanted there to be a purpose for their traveling to this one specific town.  I didn’t want them to just show up there, all separate.  From what I have learned from my D&D sessions is that they tend to be more involved when you feel a connection to everyone, or at least someone at the table.  I decided they would all receive letters instructing them to head to the town, all for a purpose, which may not be the same.

The week before, I decided I would map out traveling times.  The Boy, being from a Monastery, would have the longest.  They are usually in far away secluded areas.  Next would be K, who is living in a Celestial grove commune of hippies, then the Elves, their village was closer to the town, and they had a trade agreement, so they had the shortest.  I made a graph with the nights of travelling and whether there would be encounters.  This is where Girl2 came in.  She rolled and based on her rolling, would determine whether the encounter would be a high or low roll for the PC.  Except one, that one she rolled a 20, so one PC was definitely getting something.  (It was The Boy).  Then Girl 2 and I mapped up some monsters for them, so I would know what they would be fighting.  We finished up with just some one on one combat between Ana my Cleric and she played my brother’s Barbarian.  Here are some pics, and I think you can determine the winner:




She rolls true.

So, onto yesterday.  Everyone was here and ready to do (and we had a guest, Girl1’s other HS friend), so we began.  Please hear Morgan Freeman as I narrate from here on out.  Even if I am a girl.

Everyone has a place in this world, and a job to do.  Five people learned yesterday that though their goals may be different, their paths may intersect.  The town of Kingsholm has had some trouble recently, and being a small town, do not have the forces to send out to investigate.  To Jea-Tei-Jin, this meant leaving his home to discover his inner strength.  Petrilly had received a message from her God, Obad-Hai, instructing her to find this young monk and assist him on his path.  Vadania needed to aid the town to help secure the elvish trade was cemented, as her village depended on this income.  Lia, her sister, needed to find her voice in the world, to sing the songs of her people and learn new ones.  Hephestus received a scroll from someone who could be a relative from his family; on the father’s side that abandoned them.  


Yes, there were scrolls.




Then set out they all did.  Jin set out through the forest (I put on forest sound effects) and had to battle alone on his first few nights.  On the third day, he came across and stepped on a halfling.  She was not too pleased at being stepped on, but as soon as she know it was the monk she was searching for became very excited.  Together they battled hard and won, and together I think they will both learn much.


The elves had their own journeys to start and off they went. It wasn’t long before they also met up with Petrilly and Jin.  They headed to Kingsholm, just a day away.  Once they made it to the town, they were greeted by the Mayor’s assistant.  She told them they should head to the Tavern, as they were expected.  She went off to find the Mayor, to alert him that he would be needed, and our heroes set out to the Inn, for some rest, food, and entertainment (Jonathan the Bard was in town that night!)



What is the first thing you do upon entering a town?  Use a hula hoop, throw a football, and dance!

When they entered the Inn, a very excited waitress named Alexia seated them.  You could hear the music in the background, an excellent night for entertainment.  She presented them with the day’s choices:


Yes, I made a menu.

And started them off with appetizers, to whet the appetite.  My humor knows no bounds.


They were told to enjoy their dinner, all vegetarian fair, as the cows had been taken and slaughtered.  Depending on who you ask, it is thieves, ghosts, wolves, or Thom.  I bet it was Thom. Or Kevin.

They met with the Innkeeper, the Captain of the Guard, and the Dwarf who runs the General Store.  They gave them the information of what was going on.  There was three missing humans, and two missing sentinels.  No one knows why, but they can’t send anymore to find them.  They asked them to do the favor, to see what could be happening and they would be handsomely rewarded upon return.  The Mayor offered a high price, as he was only expecting two people (the monk and the Elvish representative), and honestly, does not think any of all will return.  They agreed and the bar erupted into cheers for the “Champions of Kingsholm!” The best Ale (or sparkling grape juice) was brought out to celebrate these brave adventures.




And so this is where it ends for now.  Next session will be getting them to where the need to go and actually starting the adventure.  I very much look forward to running this show, as I found I had an excellent time doing it.  I found youtube to be an invaluable source to create environments.  They have sound effects for everything on there!  When K fought a dragon I put on dragon noises.  When they were in the forest, there were forest sounds.  I have found rain, dripping water for dungeons, wolves, bears, forest and night and campfires.  It is going to be much fun.  There won’t be a menu every time, but I figured for this one, who knew when they would be in a tavern next.  I need to find more props, things to make it more alive.  I almost made them walk over to the actual hiking path close to my house for the adventure, but I will save that for another day….

My blessing to you is may the 20’s be plentiful and your journey well met.

You can stop hearing me as Morgan Freeman now. 


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Preparing for Adventure!

So, today I shall begin my newest job as a DM for Girl1, Boy, my girl K, and Pedro.  Others may join us at other points in time, but for now it is the four of them.  I am excited and nervous, all rolled into one!  I so want to go into everything I have already done, but I can’t because I want to keep it a surprise.  

This weekend is an absolute geek weekend at my house.  I came home from work last night after a longer than normal day (I am working on a project which captured my soul.  I wanted to ensure that I was able to finish it up this week), and Girl2 wanted to play some video games.  I really wanted to unwind with some FFX, so I decided to combine the two.  We sat together and I taught her the most important lesson of the RPG.  Grind.  Grind, and grind, and then grind some more.  Playing the game is fun, but the most fun thing for me is to sit after a long day and just run around in circles in fights.  I also want to ensure that I have enough money to pay off O’aka, that cheeky bastard.  The first grind I had over 5k gold, which I gave to him, and now the next time I see him I will give him 5,002 gold, which will earn me 30% off his wares.  I have done this in the first two towns.  So, for those that just go through the games, that is fine too, but for me, there is nothing better than being in the same spot.  For hours.  

I also got to teach her some fundamentals, like making sure everyone has a turn so they can have equal XP.  Everyone gets a turn.  So as it should be in real life.  She learned about elements and opposites.  She learned that sometimes some people will have some skills that are better suited than others, but others will have skills that are different.  If you work together, you find that all the skills are equally useful.  Ok, really, she learned how to run in circles and fight things.


Look at her, playing her first Final Fantasy game!  It brought tears of joy to my eyes.

Now today, she is off to her father’s and her Aunt Wendy is coming to visit so she will have a very exciting day.  But maybe not as exciting than us!  An adventure awaits for our brave souls, and they already have one this against them.  I am the DM.  To show how serious, I am coming in with the intimidation right out of the gate.  I am wearing a glow in the dark Dalek shirt.



I think they will rise to the challenge, for it would be a shame if they can’t make it to the town!  I have a lot in store for them…


They may need all of these dice.

Until next time!


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The Table

Yesterday began with a fight, today with a passing.  Uncle Bob passed away after a long battle and he was one of the most fierce warriors out there.  I remember quite a few times being told that he wasn’t doing well, and the odds were not in his favor, yet he kept going.  I hope I can apply as much strength and fierceness to my battles as he did his. 

A few months ago, maybe around 6 months or so ago, Uncle Bob moved to a facility where he would spend the rest of his days.  He had left behind a fully furnished apartment and bestowed upon me a gift.  He gave me a table.  When I first moved, I had procured myself the Wal-Mart special table.  I remember it was kinda of comical because there were 5 people at the house, but the table only fit 4.  Someone (and yes, it is me) did not think ahead to maybe purchase a table that everyone could sit at together.  So we have a stick out counter, and a stool like chair, and 4 people would sit at the table, while one took the time out chair at the counter.  We rotated positions, so not one person was in time out every day.  


Seriously, this existed.

He gifted me with his table.

This was a table with an insert.  It had 6 chairs.  That was one more than even needed!  A whole extra chair!  No one had to sit at the time out counter again, or wouldn’t if everyone was home for dinner, which always doesn’t happen.  Still, a whole extra chair!

I never realized the importance of a table.  How one thing can be such a hub of activity.  Especially when it is big enough to fit everyone.  The table has already hosted a Thanksgiving and Christmas, and not just any Thanksgiving and Christmas, but the first ones I have put on in my home.  


Here is Uncle Sal, at the table, enjoying some quality time at Thanksgiving.  He isn’t in the time out chair.

It has hosted hours of artwork.  Sequins, and glue; flowers and cards.  Girl1 even made news at the table when she made a card for a girl who just needed support.  She made some art, shared her soul, all at the table.


Girl1 hates this picture and it keeps coming up.  I love this picture because it is love.

This table is not like any other table.  It isn’t just a flat surface.  It has been mountains, villages, dungeons, campfires, as well as many other things when we gather around to play D&D.  People joining us at this table to leave the real life behind for a few hours and go on adventures.  The last adventure we were kidnapped and the table was a gladiator style arena filled with people looking for a good show.  We didn’t disappoint.


That is 10 Orcs!  10 agressive orcs!


The elixir made her voice like sunshine rays.  She inspired us to victory!

It is a place for long conversations over cups of coffee.  A place to come home and just fold your arms on it and put your head down after a long day.  It is a gathering spot for all occasions, happy and sad.  Some days it is the place you put on some Pandora and just connect with each other.  It was the spot for puzzle building.



Still isn’t finished yet.  We’ll get there.

When is a table not a table?  When it is where you connect with your family, friends, and loved ones.

Uncle Bob, you didn’t just bestow upon me a table.  You gave me a spot where everyone has a chair, and there is always an extra one for whomever needs it.  You gave me and the family a place to connect, to laugh, to cry, to be comforted, to be loved.  You gave our home a center for a hub of activities, and it will continue to be so.  Thank you for that gift, and for always being someone who would smile, give a funny sarcastic comment, and teach all that knew you that life deserves laughter.  We will always have a chair ready for you.




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Margins and Bullet Points – My Messy Beautiful

How could I not do this?  A simple request from someone who I have never met, but has given me so much.  I will probably never meet her (I missed my chance when she came to CT for a book signing, but it was farther away and I had to work) and that is one of my regrets.  Glennon, over at Momastery.com, invited us to say hello, to share our stories, and not just any stories.  Our messy stories.  The ones that hide deep in us, that we may be ashamed of.  I was intrigued when I saw the rumblings on the page, I stared when it went live. I wanted to write it all out so badly, but I was scared.  I was scared to show my messy.  I don’t know why this post, more so than others, really scares me.  I have written about divorce, eating disorders, troubled families.  This shouldn’t.  So I am showing up, world.  I am showing up for Glennon, and for you, dearest reader, and for me.  It’s time to not be scared.  Maybe it is time to be scared, but do it anyways.  Monumental things happen when you face your fears.

So, now that I am here, I don’t know where to begin.  It would be easier to write about what isn’t messy, because I can’t think of one aspect of my life that isn’t.  So I will start with something that made it all make sense and go from there.

I got the sweetest comment on one of my old posts.  Girl1’s friend (and my soul son) discovered my blog and had commented on one particular feelsy post about how he was happy that he found my blog.  To him, it was nice that someone who was close to him had these same feelings, who have gone through similar things, someone gets it.  It almost brought me to tears, because my heart overflowed with love and hope.  That someone found my words and it comforted them.  The way so many other’s words do for me.

So onto my messy.  I am a single parent of 3.  That’s pretty messy.  I have a job I mostly enjoy with people I adore.  And my ex husband is there too, a stone throw away.  That’s rather messy, but it is my messy and I deal.  I have battled eating disorders, have Celiac’s, Chrones, more allergies than I can tell you.  That’s pretty messy.  How do you fit all of that into one post?  You don’t.  Instead I will just tell you about today, because today was very messy.

I woke up to a text from the ex asking if he could come over.  Within 5 minutes he was there and the arguing ensued.  I knew it was coming, and even what it was about.  I had been waiting for this argument for a few days, actually.  It was the same song and dance, and although I could spill the details here, I won’t, because it isn’t just my messy.  The hard part wasn’t as much the subject, but that it was happening within 5 minutes of my waking up.  Then when we left the house for work (separately – he finally got his own car), I went to get my morning coffee and my card was declined.  It happens when you are a single parent, raising three kids, and going from a 2 income to 1 income household.  It’s the truth, and sometimes it means you don’t get the coffee because your bills got paid on auto draft and you forgot which day it was.

I made 4 different resumes in one and a half hours.  I was told 4 different times it wasn’t good enough.  Once because it wasn’t bullet pointed.  Once because some of the margins were off.  Once because I didn’t sell myself enough.  The last because I wrote too much. I wanted to take the word doc and erase everything and put one bullet in.  That one bullet would say:

  • I woke up this morning and fought with my ex-husband for 45 minutes, drove in my car, was denied coffee, still showed up.  
  • The last bullet should sum it up.

Okay, so maybe two bullets.  

I work long days.  9:30 AM to 8 PM days.  I sometimes come home and I am lucky if my children aren’t in bed yet.  My youngest, I only get her for 3.5 days a week, because we are all about equality.

This is my truth.  This is my messy.  This is also my beautiful.

I have three beautiful children.  I have a job.  I have the money to pay my rent and bills (mostly).  I have a best friend who sits with me and loves me and lets me do what I need to do.  She isn’t just my best friend; she is my soul sister.  I have other best friends who will drive long drives to play games with me and my children and who will listen.  I have someone who loves me who is on another continent.  He doesn’t even get to see me daily, but daily he is there in some form.  I am lucky that he lets me love him too.

I feel everything, too much sometimes, but I can feel.  I can take it all in, and just love the hell out of it.  I can connect with people, with my surroundings, with my life.  I have enough, more than enough even, because there is so much love.  I love the things I didn’t even know I love yet, but it is there waiting.

I always made my choices, knowing some of them would be harder than others, and there would be struggles at times.  I am not giving up.  I just woke up.  My life may not have the right margins, or it may not be able to be stuck neatly into bullet points, but it is mine.  I wouldn’t change my messy beautiful for the world.







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