Self Project Day 12: This is me
We slept in today. No workout or meditation before kids woke up, so I'm out of sorts. I just dropped them off at the bus after running around like a crazy lady making four lunches, finding 8 socks that kind of matched, 8 mitts that definitely didn't match and homework that wasn't finished. I walked over to the studio, pulled off my sweater, and stood infront of the camera. I haven't brushed my hair in two days, I don't have makeup on, and I feel....happy. For the first time ever I look at myself and feel beautiful, but not for my looks.
I know I'm not for everyone and I don't pretend to be. My smart mouth, keen intuition and impulsive behavior will drive you crazy on some days. I admit that I often do and say things without thinking that only get me into trouble. I love hard. I want to fix the broken people around me, and wear wings around my neck as a reminder that flying is always an option. I told one of my highschool friends the other day that maybe I'm doing it wrong. Maybe I need to shut down and close off and protect my heart. He told me that that is one of the things that makes me amazing. That caring is who I am.
So here I am. Today I make a stand for myself. I don't care about your opinion of me. I don't care if you think I say too much. I don't care if you think I shouldn't be posting photos of myself and talking about my journey. I don't care if you think I should have stayed in a loveless marriage. I don't care if you think I'm doing it all wrong. I don't care what you whisper about me behind my back. I don't care. Because the ones that love me and find me worth it, I promise that my love, loyalty and commitment to spoil and care for you, will make it all worth it. So whatever opinion you hold of me, keep it to yourself. I don't care. I'll make you a promise, I will hold no opinion on you and the choices you make in your life - since we are all just trying to do our best - if you want to do the same for me. Because starting today, I don't waste my time on the opinions others have of me. Your loss, not mine. This is me.
Self Project Day 11: Free
I like to think that I have this all figured out, that I am steady and strong all of the time. My close friends know that this is a roller coaster ride. That some days I wake up ready to slay the dragon, and other days I wake up and think "what the hell am I going to do?" I think my saving grace, is that there are so many ways I am shown that this is the right decision. That there is no other way. I spent too many years involved in turmoil, and anger, and nastiness. Too many years fighting for a place in a family that wasn't worth the fight. I feel like I'm divorcing my ex as much as I'm divorcing his family. And the worst part, is all of those years I spent consumed in their bitterness. What a waste. Even now I hear whispers of a lawsuit for defamation of character. I'm not sure if this is true, but if it is, bring it on. I will not be threatened and bullied anymore. Sweetheart, and you know which one you are in the family, it's time you move on. Stop worrying about me, stop checking up on me, stop talking about me, stop letting me consume you still. It's not healthy for you. I promise I don't think about you anymore. Let that stuff go, and enjoy your life. I know that I have never felt more free since letting all of you go. All you do when you say these things about me to other people, is light my fire even more. You make me stronger and more confident. You make me want to rise up above you all.
I am greatful my children have wonderful grandparents who love them very much. But I worry about the role models they have in their lives. We all need to step it up a bit. Put our own issues aside and realize the four little ones that are affected the most here. You don't need to be so bitter. You don't need to be spiteful or angry. This could all be very different. But that is the choice you have to make. But just remember, I am a whole lot stronger then you think or ever gave me credit for. And when this is all over, I will be free.
Self Project Day 9: Ten Years.
I have struggled with heart issues for many years now. I liked to ignore it, I did not have time to deal with it. But four children in three years did a number, and at 26, I had to have surgery on my heart. Want an interesting experience? Be awake, while they operate on your heart. Have doctors explain to you as they burn sections out of your heart. I've never felt the flight or fight sensation as much as I did that day. This situation actually took a toll on my marriage, as my ex decided to go hunting during my surgery. In his defense, he has since apologized and admitted it wasn't a great choice, but this was something I never really got over. And track record speaks for itself. But I had my dad. He was there for me the entire time, wanted to sleep in the chair beside me, and reluctantly left after the nurse sternly told him to. 24 hours later I was home taking care of my babies. I am supposed to take my blood pressure twice a day, but I'm lucky if I do it twice a week, or even twice a month. I am the worst patient ever. My doctor told me to lose 15 pounds, well, that hasn't happened yet either. I have been poked and prodded, my chest sandpapered for leads, hooked up to machines and MRIs, run topless on treadmills more times then I'd like to admit. I would like to say I'm fixed, but I'm not. The problem now is that my heart is enlarged to twice the size. I literally have a big heart. My doctor says that I have ten years tops with it if it stays like this. The solution? Destress........ha. ha. ha. Destress? I asked him to come spend a week with me, and he would see how he's literally asking me to move mountains with my magic abilities. I have felt my heart more lately then I have in a long time. It is the most frustrating thing. To be held back by something that is supposed to pump life around my body. It is like my heart is saying, want a challenge? I will give you the hardest one there is. Luckily, I never back down from a challenge. Ten years? Nah. I've got too much life to live, there is no way I can fit it into just ten years.
Self Project Day 8: Family.
This is it for me. This is my core, my life, my heart. At the end of the day, this is all that matters. I never thought I would have four children, it was not something I dreamed of. My sister told me not too long ago that this was never the life she imagined for me, she thought I would be off on adventures, living free and wild. There are times I daydream about that, because she is right in so many ways. But then I look at these four. That one holding us all together, he made me a mom, and showed me what unconditional love is. Those two girls on each side of me, they showed me what strength was when they were three pounds and fighting for their life. That little man snuggled into me, he showed me how important it is to laugh and stand behind your feelings. And the four babies that watch over us, they showed me that grief can be overcome.
We aren't perfect. I make mistakes with them all of the time. But I love them with every bone in my body and breath in my soul. They keep me going when I don't always feel like I have the strength. If I raise my girls to stay wild and strong, and my boys to stay respectful and sensitive, I feel like I win. I am told by many how wonderful they are. How I am doing something right with them. Thank you to those that tell me this. Because most days, I question myself. Now more then anything, I wonder what they will learn from me. I wonder what type of a role model I can be for them.
This is my family, the five of us. My dad tells me that one day, someone will see us for the gift that we are. That someone would be crazy not to want to be a part of this. Maybe he's right, maybe not. And I'm ok with that. Because this is my tribe. And not only do I have these four, but a dad that is my pillar, and a sister that is my best friend. Life is good.
And to those friends that have stuck by my side, you are my family too. I love you all very much. What a tribe we are.
*side note: hardest self timed photo ever....I had 10 seconds to get from camera to them and set up....and I didn't yell at them once!! #selfproject#selfportrait#family#mytribe#proudmom#children#tribe#myfamily#love#mygift
Self project day 7: music to the soul.
I love music. Listening to it. Dancing to it. Singing to it. Playing it. I feel like I was born with music notes etched in my bones. I have learned the flute, violins, piano and guitar. Some are still a work in progress of course. I took lessons on this piano when I was very young, and now it sits, broken keys and out of tune...kinda like me.
I have this thing I do when I am stressed or just not having a good day. I sit down and I play. Nothing that is written, and I can only play one note at a time, that's the rule. I might sound like a toddler hitting the keys but usually it works. My mind stops, and I simply just play. Today is one of those days. I've sat at it at least five times already, trying to feel better.
I tucked away my artistic side as a teenager. I stopped painting and drawing and playing music. I took sciences instead. I stopped listening to my heart and pushed with my head. Now, when everything is uncertain I reach for what talks to my soul. I might not be good at it, but I don't think that really matters. I sit here, and I feel my mom. I can hear her humming like she used to and I feel the stress leave, even for just a little while. Before I have to go back to life and figure out what the hell I'm doing.
I had some pretty awful things said to me this week, things that would have crumbled me a few months ago. But instead, I play on.
Self Project Day 6: Mornings.
I find when things aren't going well, mornings are hard. Waking up and having to get out of bed and be a human and do things and work and eat and function....no thanks. I love my bed. I love sleeping. I love lots of blankets and pillows and soft sheets and books read in bed. Its my sanctuary.
When my mom died, I just wanted to climb in, pull the covers up and disappear. I never got to do this. Not one day did I get to wallow. I never grieved for her my therapist says. I just pushed through. These past few months I've wanted to just climb into bed, pull the covers up and disappear. But I haven't. I have four tiny humans that are watching my every move. That cry when I cry, and laugh when I laugh. So I have to show them that mornings are awesome. That we are lucky each day we have a healthy body to get us out of bed, and food to eat, and things to do.
I don't feel lucky every day. But I make my choice every morning. I choose to wake up and be positive. I don't want to hide under the covers and wallow. I know I have friends I can cry to when needed, not covers to hide under. It is so easy to sit in self pity and wonder why everything bad happens to you. Sometimes, life just goes to shit. Sometimes the path you thought was best for you, really wasn't, and the Universe had other plans. So it had to slap you up side the head and say...well you're not listening to my little signs, so I'm gonna turn your world upside down.
I might not like each day I am given, some suck a lot, but there is always tomorrow. The sun always comes out again.
"I hope you know that you deserve it all. The best, the most honest, the most beautiful and purest love in the world. Not only to be loved by others, but to be loved by yourself. To look in the mirror and think 'yes, I'm exactly who I want to be'. To speak up and be proud of yourself. To be brave and open. You deserve the nicest and most caring people to walk into your life. You deserve it all, you know. The whole world. And you should never forget." #macro#macrophotography#canon#canonphotography#jillianbphotography#cobourg#cobourgphotographer#flower#orchid
Self Project Day 6: beautified
One of my fondest memories growing up was watching my mom do her hair and makeup. I used to sit and watch her in awe as she curled and painted. When she was on top of her game, she felt that you should never go out of the house without putting some effort into yourself. Sometimes we were late because of this, but she always looked beautiful.
It's amazing what you choose to take and leave from your childhood. I struggle with this concept at times. I enjoy getting dressed up and "beautified" at times, it makes me feel good. But most days, I leave the house with a high bun and fresh face, pair of ripped jeans and a t-shirt.
My girls sit and watch me. They ask for makeup, I refuse, they pout. I tell them they are beautiful without it, and no amount of face paint will ever make them shine more then they already do. I try to show them to be comfortable in their own skin, which often means a lot of us in the house only sport underwear at times! I know that this won't last forever. But I hope that they can watch their momma do both. Take pride in the natural, and take enjoyment out of adding some color.
I used to feel like I had to "keep up appearances", and that couldn't be accomplished without my war paint. How exhausting it got at times. But it's funny when you get in a self accepting spot, that you no longer care about this, because you only have you to impress. That when I take the time to actually brush my hair, it's for me. And when you are happy, your soul shines through and no amount of makeup or pretty hair can top that. That when you quiet the people around you that you've allowed to make you feel like you aren't enough, you realize, you are more then enough. And that is beauty all on it's own.
Self Project Day 5: This is me.
I figure since it's my birthday, what better way to document it then in my birthday suit. 34 years in the making:
*I snort when I laugh really hard
*I will break out in dance almost anywhere
*I can't sing, but I love to give car concerts
*I am very stubborn and always willing to argue my point with you
*Giving to others and making them feel loved/special makes me feel very happy
*I adore my small tribe and would give the shirt off my back for them
*My dad calls me a Jack of all Trades because I am always wanting to try and learn new things
*my mom called me a wild child, hard to tame
*I hate feet....people touching me with their feet makes me cringe
*Don't mess with my kids/nieces/nephew because the momma/auntie bear comes out and it's not good
*I have a moms voice that will scare a grown man into doing what I say
*chocolate is my favorite and I HATE sharing it with anyone, including my kids
*I am impulsive, and sometimes regret my words and actions, but it's too late
*the ocean calls to me
*I'm an empath, so feel too much, and am affected by other peoples energies
*I love comfy clothes, better then anything else
*I believe animals have souls
*I care less and less what people think of me
*I prefer to cut toxic people out of my life then keep them around and be fake
*I wear my heart on my sleeve, and it often hurts me, but I prefer to see the best in people
*unicorn is my spirit animal
*I usually prefer to stay in and read then go out and be social
*I can trip over air and fall up the stairs like a pro
*I'm not a very good cook because I don't like food...vegetables are disgusting and should be banned
*I'm finally realizing self love is important
This is me. I won't apologize for any of it. Instead I'm learning to embrace it.
Happy Lifeday to me. May 34 teach me even more lessons then 33.