Summer Is….

The bright sun beating down on your back as you mow the lawn. Sweat pouring down your face as you just walk from the house to the mailbox and back. Warm rain storms and puddles to splash in. Bright fluffy white clouds and laying on blankets arguing over what each one looks like.

The smell of charcoal grills and propane grills firing up all kinds of goodness; hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken, vegetables. Your mom’s potato salad that you don’t really like but you eat because you love her and don’t want to hurt her feelings. It is cherry jello and ice cream with sprinkles (jimmies as they say in Philly) and lots of whipped cream and a cherry on top. It is water ice and pretzels with mustard.

The loud bang of fireworks bright in the sky, twinkling as they fall and disappear. It is a sweaty hand intertwining with another sweaty hand as you walk the boardwalk. It is the pounding of the ocean waves, the smell of pizza and popcorn as you walk down the boardwalk. It is mini-golf, tag, kick the can, and sweet first kisses that you’ll never forget.

The brown skin of my Italian husband and the red skin of my Irish/Polish skin. It is SPF- 100 suntan lotions and sprays. It is the smell of salt and sand and coconut lotion. It is the soothing balm of aloe at the end of a day spent swimming and splashing with friends. It is the best sleep all year because your body is warm and has been soaking up sand and sun all day.

The crackle of bonfires while camping at the lake and eating smores. Ghost stories, late nights, cabins, and finding God. It is the best fruit time and corn on the cob with butter melting down your face time. It is family and friends and a coming together of people who matter most to you. It is lawn chairs and beach chairs and book after book. It is the songs of summer and wearing the coolest shades you can find.

It is a feeling, it is a memory, and it is indescribable although I’ve tried.

 

Super Explosive Glittery Happiness

Today I did something that was really difficult for me. I sucked up my pride, my anxiety, and my terror and went to see a Nurse for Diabetes Education and a Dietician today because my Diabetes/Health/Blood Sugar/Mental Health are all out of whack at the moment and I feel that I am in a place where I am finally ready to do something about it besides whine, make excuses, and generally beat the crap out of myself about it.

I sat in this office from 1:15pm-4:30pm asking every question I had about my medication, testing my sugar, complications I have been experiencing, which foods I thought were “bad,” and mostly my feelings of failure every time I test my sugars and it’s not where it should be. I had honestly given up trying to test because it felt pointless and demoralizing to see that number every day.

THESE WOMEN WERE AMAZING!!

They listened to my concerns, explained my medications, explained certain symptoms, gave me suggestions, told me all my next steps, gave me samples, gave me REASONABLE expectations for eating, and just generally made me feel like a good human being again. PLUS!!! They said I was not eating as bad as I thought and that I actually have A LOT of muscle mass despite my insistence when I came in that I was 99% fat mass.

I left that office very tired but also feeling like a super glitter bomb of happiness just exploded inside my chest! I have not felt hopeful about my body, about my weight, or my ability to manage this illness in YEARS!

heart explosion

I want to sincerely thank those women for giving me back hope, for giving me an action plan, and also for treating me with dignity. It meant the world to me.

My advice is no matter how many crappy doctors, specialists, or experts you encounter you should never give up. It took me years to find the right people who believed me, saw me as a whole person, and listened to what I had to say. So please if you are reading this, don’t give up. Keep fighting and keep trying. You may be one appointment away from

Super Explosive Glittery Happiness!!

To My Best Friend Who Just Had A Baby

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You, my best friend, had a baby on Friday! She’s tiny, gorgeous, and perfectly healthy. A new life born to do good, bad and everything in between. You are one more in a string of friends that have recently had babies. Everywhere I go, I am surrounded by adorable pictures of adorable kids doing adorable things.

Outside I coo and I make cute noises and I could just eat up every single one of them. I snuggle the few I’m allowed to see. They are each beautiful in their own unique ways.

Inside I cry, I rage, and I beat the hell out of myself for not doing this thing that is the epitome of womanhood. I can already feel you drifting away from me. It started with you telling me not to come see you at the hospital and then not to visit until you are “ready.”

I get it. You want some private time with the new love of your life. You want grandmom and grand-pop to come and snuggle her up and make her laugh. You want close family to come and adore this life you created and celebrate with you and your husband. The same husband who STILL did not build the crib for her (I seriously want to hit him for that). She’s been alive barely two days and already you are so in love you can’t imagine life without her. I get it. I really do.

But I miss you. I miss our long talks, and our laughter, and our friendship. I miss being able to call you up and get and give comfort. I miss our passion and our absolute faith in God. Did you know I’m struggling right now to know if what I believe is true? How could you? We barely see each other as both of us settled into our careers, me a Social Worker, and you one of the best damn middle school History teachers out there.

I miss all of my friends that have joined the Sisterhood of Motherhood. It is a club I am excluded from. And I am so happy you got in because you wanted this for so long. But I wish I was there too. I wish we could have our kids grow up together and marvel at all the small miracles like when they first roll over, or crawl, or walk, or say that first precious word. But the door has been firmly shut in my face by friend, after friend, after friend and even a few family members. It’s not that you shut the door unkindly. It is just a space I don’t belong and can’t understand because I am not a mother.

So congratulations my dear friend. I am so thrilled about the journey you and your husband are now on. I will miss you but should you need me, I will come running. After all, that is what best friends are for.

 

toes

The Best Part Of The Job

I complain about my job a lot. I know I do. Long hours, not enough pay, definitely not enough appreciation from anyone.

BUT…

There are days like today that make it all worth it. This week was brutal with parents screaming, canceling visits (after I had already confirmed with them the day before), and generally telling me I suck in every way possible. But it all melted away today.

Today I met with 3 of my little guys who have been quite challenging for their mother in regards to their behaviors. When we first started, mom could not even talk to anyone without getting beat up by all 3 boys. Punching, scratching, kicking, hitting, pulling hair, etc. Today it has been about 6 months since we started services. The kids were able to tolerate the treatment team talking to mom for over an hour without having any major meltdown. The one little boy, when he wanted to play a game on mom’s cell phone said “Tap, tap, tap” as he tapped her arm, then he politely requested the phone. This child normally would have snatched the phone and slammed it on the ground or run around with it. Instead he took the phone, sat on the couch, and played games on it.

I was absolutely FLOORED!!

I know most people would say “big deal” but to me and the people working with him it was a HUGE deal. I wanted to pick the kid up and swing him around and tell him how proud I was of him (but I didn’t because I think I would have scared everyone and the kiddo). I LOVE THESE MOMENTS!! The small progress, the small successes are so treasured and so appreciated in my heart. I love seeing mom feel hopeful again.

Maybe you aren’t meeting all of your goals (I sure am not) but that’s okay. Please take a moment to celebrate those small successes. They mean so much!!

small victories