I am An MD: Master of Determination


Very soon I will be guest blogging for Dancing with Fireflies. This blog is very dear to my heart as I appreciate the writing, topics, and challenges that come along with it. Having been sick the past few weeks I’ve been missing her Weekly Writing Challenge. Today, I am partaking. The question: what is your expertise?

I would love to be able to have an actual MD. The truth of the matter is I actually have a Masters degree in Counseling.

But I love to give myself credit as being an MD: Master of Determination.

My expertise is in never giving up. Life can hand me the most unusual, difficult, and emotionally draining situations and it’s my strength, persistence, faith, and determination that help get me through these plights.

It would take me an entire novel or memoir, pages and pages of blogging to explain every life event that I have gotten through and learned from. It would take me years, I suppose, to explain each of the ways I have gained strength from not giving in to the worst of experiences. I have not only become a wiser person – my ability, or should I say expertise, as a person who persists to believe in miracles, second chances, in the idea that failing at something does not make you a failure: it is a lesson learned to benefit from. Failing never makes a person weak. Failure is an opportunity to become stronger – to overcome (thus the purpose of my blog – to empower myself and others to never give up or not allow the curveballs that life throws at us to become strike outs – yet home runs).

So, my friends, in response to this challenge I give you a new bumper sticker idea…

(Sidebar for new followers: I love to come up with bumper stickers – I find the humor and creativity almost inspiring in itself.)

Imagine the back of my Prius with the following:

“I’ll be Back: I am the Determinator.”



The new trend: Complaining about Complaining


A note to readers:  I have been out sick for a while and am finally getting better, enough at least to be able to post again and update my blog. Not only did I get strep throat, I came down with a terribly painful case of Colitis.

Wait. Maybe I should not have revealed that last detail: Colitis. It seems that each and every time somebody complains about something, reaches out for support, says something happy on social media: all Hell seems to break loose.

Allow me to explain. I’ve noticed while being sick in bed for the past two weeks and observing the news, blogs, articles that there appears to be a trend in social networking and blogging as well as article writing – to target a specific brand of people.

Exhibit A: a recent article from Cosmopolitan about what engaged people do on Facebook that is annoying.

Exhibit B: A recently pressed article about the 8 reasons someone won’t be friends on Facebook with you in 2014 (see #6)

Exhibit C: An article written with regards to looking down on mothers who have husbands and children.

Allow me to retort. I wonder where all the negativity comes from that drives people to write such judgmental posts. I believe it is quite apparent that I am brutally honest. I have no filter. When I feel like talking – I talk. I do not care about the subject, and I certainly do not sift through my words to make sure they do not sound negative. I keep it real.

People constantly complain about complaining are beginning to become the bane of my social media existence. Granted, I am now issuing a complaint myself.  It is officially defined as “Facebitching”:


Sometimes there are posts that are happy. My feed is full of Facebook announcements of engagement, new babies, wedding dates. I see continuous love for a spouse to another simply posting “I love you” on their partners page. I find these things beautiful and fun to watch. I post my own. It is no secret that my battle with addiction was fought publicly on Facebook. There is not a day goes by where I say something negative because I have the freedom to do so – and because I find so much support in others who suffer the same things and offer their shoulder and ears to me for venting.

These are the people I appreciate. It has become apparent recently that the concept of social media is continuously on a down spiral over those who feel compelled to say “stop posting happy things” “do not make up your own hashtags” “you’re a stay at home mother and you have kids, your life must not be fulfilling…”

I’m joining the group now of people who complain about complaining on social media – but my complaint is for the people taking other people’s exciting moments, difficult times, jobs, choices they’ve made and making rude, bitter, snide judgements just because you do not fit the same mold. You could be single, you may have chosen to not have children, you may have a job and it annoys the bejesus out of you because some mothers do not have jobs and choose to stay home with their kids.

Sidebar: parenting is a job.

Have you ever stopped for a second and just simply given somebody a congratulations? If you can’t bring yourself to do it and it drives you insane when people post on Facebook (for that matter, I could say I just had the best chocolate ice cream – all of a sudden it’s people complaining about the so called Food Porn posts) – try the hide button. On Twitter, there is an unfollow button.

I am a very open minded person. I read others posts and ideas. I read through the complaints about happy people being the disgrace of social media – then their posts and articles change to – oh there’s a negative post -let me proceed to complain about the details they give of their life. A person decides to post on their social media account that they’re sad, please pray. Yet no details are explained. These are the ones where I reach out and say I hope you feel better, or I’m thinking of you. I do not persist to ask the reasons because maybe they are choosing to say it’s not really other’s business.

Unfortunately there’s a stigma on social media where you pretty much cannot do anything right. A person posts they’re happy: someone gets pissed off “shut up, we don’t need you to post to your spouse that you love them on Facebook, go tell them in person.” (I’m rolling my eyes) – or then theres complaints of those who say they’re sad and do not give details. When they finally do give details, people are annoyed that the details were too much information “please do not post every detail of your sickness, no one needs to read that.”

WHY are you on social networking then? I’m still lost trying to figure out where the disconnect is between those who are on the internet for freedom of expression and those who are on social networking to stalk others posts and find a reason to complain about it (usually their posts consist of “i have to work today and it’s snowing”. ) Okay – I find your posts boring, so? I prefer to read when people reach out, talk about their happiness, post photos of pregnant bellies and their children playing in the snow. A few posts down there’s always someone lashing out at somebody else for being so open “geez get a room you make me want to vomit from all of your happiness” “I’m tired of people complaining that their kids are sick, so what, there’s worse problems in the world”.

Of course there are. However, there’s where I fall in: I decided to become the type that is transparent and I am now reaching out to those who complain about EVERY SINGLE DETAIL of complaining. For all of the articles on social media that post the rules, or what not to do’s, here’s MY list of rules. I hate making rules. Here’s a few insights from a transparent poster who does give details (and by the way I’m a stay at home mother).

1. Stop complaining about complaining about complaining. If you do not enjoy social networking and seeing a diversity of personalities who express themselves differently – then stop reading. Press hide.

2. Stop complaining about Bit Strip comics in your Facebook feeds. Do not like them? Turn off the funny creativity then.

3. Stop making engaged, married, or pregnant people seem like the enemy because they are hitting life milestones they are excited about and they want to share it with others. Show some compassion – I mean really complaining about that shows jealousy and bitterness on your part, at least in my opinion.

4. Stop insulting mothers who are on Facebook complaining about their child peeing the bed, or projectile vomiting at the local restaurant. I find the people who hate these posts are not parents so they clearly have no idea what that is like. Stop judging.

5. Stop making rules on Facebook and Twitter. I can use hashtags if I want, talk about what I want, and give the details that I want. It’s social media –  it’s a way of connecting with people.

6. Accept a diversity of personalities that exist beyond yours. Please do not post on how people should act on social media – stop stalking posts and go do something more productive.

7. STOP MAKING RULES. I myself am making rules – but these are MY rules that I hope EVERYONE would at least TRY to understand – but to be honest, there really isn’t a written rule that says somebody cannot express happiness, show a picture of an engagement ring, talk about their day with the kids and the million diapers changed or how the child accidentally pooped in the ball pit at Chick Fil A.

If you cannot take heat – get out of the kitchen. Get off your computer and find another life skill more fulfilling than bashing those who use social media as a way of documenting their lives and finding peace in the support they receive from others. Allow social networking to be just that- social networking.

I am in no way judging you. I am merely ANNOYED with you – just like you’ve complained pretty much every two seconds about being ANNOYED with me for SIMPLY BEING ME!

Always be yourself. Follow your own guidelines. Do not filter because you are afraid of the naysayers who have decided to take it upon themselves to insult every single solitary detail of any given post. If it can’t be happy, or sad, if it can’t be about a medical problem, or a picture of food, or a dirty baby eating his first solid foods meal: then what is it?

Boring and a total defeat of the purpose of self expression. I’m sure you claim your posts are about self expression that you cannot stand people complaining – but you yourself are complaining.

So I admit it – I’m complaining about complaining but I’m also taking a stand for people who choose to be transparent and honest with others. I applaud that. While I applaud the efforts of the complainers to at least put time and effort into their thoughts of why they hate hashtags, engagements, childbirth, marriage, posts about sickness: I feel you could at least give it a rest and find the positive in people who are not afraid to share their live stories to connect with others. Maybe their life story isn’t yours but instead of concentrating on telling them how annoying they are – remember, you are annoying too.

Because you can’t just simply sit back, watch, and possibly learn from the diversity of personalities that exist in social media.


My Heart Unlocked: The Key


Love can teach you many lessons.

I have suffered with anxiety, depression, and self-esteem issues for many years. These issues date back to around spring of 1998. I have been through several major relationships – one of which ended in a broken marriage. Following divorce depression can become especially overwhelming. I had already been suffering for a year and a half prior to our separation due to postpartum depression stemming from the birth of my daughter in May 2009. The darkness I exuded brought so much despair that eventually – my ex husband decided to leave.

My life seemed to begin over again. Here I was living alone with racing thoughts and questions: how did this fail? I wondered had I ever really been in love – why had this gone so awry  … it was at that point that I said to myself, and believed, true love really did not exist.

In April 2012, on a chance encounter, I met my now husband, Joe. My heart was dead bolted. Locked. My soul was marked with a “No Trespassing” sign. I was still struggling with my esteem. I felt rotten, ugly, like I had completely been doomed to never feel the essence of true love. I was faced with a man that I instantly recognized had the type of strength I had always dreamed of. Here before me stood a Veteran, divorced himself, who had also survived cancer and had three children himself. His intelligence immediately sparked my interest. I consider myself a very smart and talented lady in a lot of respects – but his intelligence was not condescending. I was used to the type of man who would patronize me by making me feel as if my quotient of wisdom was stupidity, not knowledge.

Joe and I talked for hours each day. This man understood and got to the bottom of the deepest pits of my inner demons so quickly. I believe it was his kindness, his warm smile, his gentle voice that spoke to me with such caring generosity – that truly unlocked my ability to open up so immediately. It came out of nowhere. All of this time I had wondered if there was a man who was patient, kind, forgiving, understanding, hopeful, and loving – that would actually believe in me despite my emotional baggage.

Joe has never once left my side since. He has seen me through some of the most difficult times. We have braved my depression, anxiety, addiction, and health issues TOGETHER. He has taught me the meaning of true love. The value of his confidence in me goes hand in hand with his undying affection for each and every part of me. He never questions me. Every day I wake up and I’m told I’m beautiful. Little notes written on the steam of the mirror after I take a shower – “I love you, baby.” These are things I have never experienced before. In looking back on the past I realize that I never once failed anybody or anything when it came to love – I just had not yet found what it was truly supposed to be.

In my Prince Charming I have learned how to open my heart again. The key was in someone’s ability to grasp onto my inner imperfections and show me the light in each flaw – and that knowing that despite any days where I may cry for no reason, be moody, yell obscenities, need time alone – he still guides me and holds my hand through each moment. The key was finding somebody strong enough to not let go when the darkest hours present themselves in such perilous light – and instead, that someone would hold me through it and turn that into time together that just makes us both stronger.

He is my best friend. He is closest to me. He knows me better in 2 years than anyone has ever known me in all 34 years alive. He has brought me into that place of happiness and peace – he has taught me that the emotional catalyst to renewing my faith was simply in believing in myself – and to to trust someone else to do the same. I love him more than I could ever imagine loving another human soul – and in this lesson, I have become whole again. After being torn to pieces – his hands, his face, his smile, his heart, his hope, his soul, his genuine belief in my genuine self – has put me back together with a soulful thread and that missing needle in the haystack:

Undying, true, selfless, faithful:  love.

It does exist. We are proof.


Stop that Wrecking Train


It takes a lot to bring me out of my hole of sickness. When get sick – I get sick BAD. It’s been one year since I had my last case of any sort of flu or cold (I was pregnant with pneumonia – fun). January 2014 is no different. I am still on the mend and actually at the height of it – I’m feeling terrible. I’m on a lot of medication for the strep throat and for the ears to get them to drain. I am very tired.

Yet still, I felt compelled to come and write my thoughts with regards to an incident two days ago that touched me a little bit too close.

At the beginning of my blog I wrote an open letter to the Famous.

If you have yet to read this lovely masterpiece of my mind’s rantings – it embraces that famous people make mistakes and that I often thank them for what they do and being in the spotlight. Without a person who has overcome difficulties and pursued their dreams – we would not have our much loved entertainers, leaders, writers…. the list goes on. I mentioned in the article that I understood not all famous people were famous for a positive reason … thus the purpose of me coming out of my sick hiding hole to write today.

Dear Justin Bieber:

Here I see a 19 year kid. You are just that – a kid. You may consider yourself an invincible teenager because you are in the limelight. I know you have a plethora of money that goes as far as the ends of the earth. You can buy yourself whatever you want and prance around with your head in the clouds: nothing can stop you. Justin – something CAN stop you. Your money and fame cannot save you from hurting yourself or others by being swallowed by actions of stupidity. I know you will not read this. Odds are this will become lost in a host of tweets and fan mail that you will overlook all the same. I just have a few thoughts for you – wishes perhaps.

You have 7 years until you are 26. Today’s prompt is about the number 26. I want to see you live until the age of 26. You have such a bright future. You are a talented guy – your music often echoes in my head when I’m playing with my own children. My daughter, in her 4 year old high pitched off key yet cute voice, sings “baby … baby … baby …oh” – and it makes me smile. Yet, in this pattern of deadly activity you are showing – I cannot allow my children to idolize, or even listen to, a voice that perpetuates stupidity.

I myself fell into a pattern of addiction and acknowledged what I was going through. I sought the help of family and professionals to guide me through. The first step for you is not to be taking pictures of yourself and posting to Instagram that you are “The King” like Michael Jackson. It is not to tell your fans on Twitter that you appreciate their support and to never change for anybody. You need to let your fans, and the world, know you are learning a lesson. You must let everyone know you understand the fault of your actions and recent patterns and that you are seeking guidance to correct these inner notions that lead you to such abusive tendencies. Your music touches the lives of younger folks – those who claim you have “saved” them. These young minds embed the way you reflect yourself on society into their own brains – has it ever occurred to you that they are watching and learning from the impressions you make each day?

I am a mother, Justin. I am a wife and a friend. I am a daughter. I could never have gotten my pathway to freedom without reaching out to others and admitting I was going down the wrong road. I could not fulfill those roles knowing I was in too deep with the decisions I had made. Please, for everyone, set an example. Become a leader and a voice for those afraid to speak up that they may be falling into the same problems you are clearly showing you have. Your recent dealings that are spotlighted in the headlines show a person lost in the spotlight of famous freedom – unable to see the negative consequences of their actions. It is not too late, Justin. Do not let others who are in the same position, yet not famous, believe those types of actions are okay.

I can see you at 26 – happy. I can see you meeting your fans after a show and speaking with them about how far you’ve come – and signing their CD’s for the new songs you’ve just released that have given them more hope than they had before. Please step up to the plate. You can do this. You can grow and extend from these recent turbulent days. Instead of acting like you cannot fall into the trap of car accidents, overdoses, and addiction – remind the world and your fans that you are a regular human being too. The world is watching you – as a mother, I am watching you. I am praying you will find your own pathway to freedom out of the spotlight and you will seek the assistance of others that can help you through what appears to me as a difficult time for you.

You can reflect to the world that your career and copious amounts of cash make you happy and you are not the troubled young man I see. But I doubt this is true. I see a tortured soul who is afraid to speak up for fear others will lose respect – or stop buying your music. You are more likely to gain respect by being a voice. You will stop making music eventually if these patterns continue. You will be lost forever with the other souls in the arms of the angels that never sought help. In the face of the eyes of the world you could lose your battle that could have been won – and those who have always followed you and considered you their “savior” – will only find devastation and questions that could never be answered because you could not simply grow up and show yourself as an actual human.

Everybody makes mistakes. No one is immune from the consequences.

I’m praying for you, Justin.

Caution: Guilty Sick Mommy Blogger Ahead!



I need to start resizing my photos. The above says “I don’t get sick days, I’m a mom!”…

Ah, , the life of a mommy. I posted earlier that I was sick and therefore having a hard time catching up on comments and nominations.

I managed to brave the ice and cold and get to urgent care.

This mommy blogger is down with Strep Throat and a bad case of a sinus infection. There’s fluid build up in both ears that’s causing me a lot of pain – along with the sore throat.

Or shall I quote the urgent care doctor “THE ANNNGGRYYYY THROAT” 

I have been missing out on daily prompts and zero to hero the past few days – I feel so guilty! No, really, I do! I have so many different ideas I could do for this. I plan on playing catch up later. This blog has in fact become such a catharsis for me – I love doing it, I also adore the new faces that come in for a glance and maybe carry some inspiration with them – the new people I’ve met, and swapped stories with. This is fantastic!

Of course, along with that, comes the guilt that I cannot be as active the next few days. Truthfully antibiotics mixed with prescription strength Mucinex is really not my stomach’s friend – so we will have to add that lovely combination into my already horrendous illness.

I wanted to point out, however, that even as a mommy – I do get sick days. My husband is amazing. He has taken over baby duty so I can rest, and I love this man so much. He is my heart and soul and everything in it – what I’ve always dreamed of. Please look for more blogs soon with regards to how he has improved my life with Panic Disorder and Depression. He has also been a huge force in my Social Anxiety. I was Agorophobic before – I am getting so much better with this because of his support an the personal fervor I have to try harder each day to find coping strategies.

While blogging is amazing – I simply cannot keep up being this sick. I wanted to point out the nature of the illness so everyone knows I am going through my Reader, I’m seeing all of your beautiful posts and poetry, and I wish I could press more likes and make more comments – I appreciate you all so much.

I will BE BACK – my musings, rantings, updates, funny quotes, sarcastic humor, and new mechanisms for living in mental and physical pain – will all be back. I just need to break this fever and get back on my feet first. You all are lovely – and I have learned so much already in the just over 2 weeks I’ve been blogging in here. What an amazing world it is – but unfortunately, even bloggers need sick days 🙂

By the way, I’m contagious – if you read this post – wash your hands!