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The Year Two Thousand & Eighteen Notables

“Think through each month, and make a list of all the notable moments, the treasures of 2018.”  (Grit & Virtue)

 

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January – We got to see the baby! For an entire month, I was a nervous wreck! Every ache or pain I felt, I just knew it spelled trouble. We knew there was a little life growing inside but we had no idea if it was okay or if it would stick. In January, we got to have our first glimpse of the newest addition. What a beautiful, amazing sight!

February – I got to meet all of Young Gun’s family and I got to witness how one long, loving life could affect so many people. The unfortunate part was that I was unable to meet the man behind the long, loving life, but the number of people he touched was absolutely unbelievable.

March – We found out the baby was a girl. My husband wanted a little girl and God saw to it. Although, I still believe when my mother-in-law got to heaven that week, her first order of business was to put in a good word and God obliged. March was also when for a brief, sparkling moment, my beautiful friend and I put away everything heart-heavy and became husband and wife.

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April – The Boy’s baseball career started to buzz! He was in the paper, his pitching was amazing and colleges were peeking in to see what he had to offer. It was a blessing to see something blossom right before our eyes. He has been dreaming of playing baseball since before he could read well, and to see it growing before him was amazing.

May – Mommy and I chucked the deuce to an item on our bucket list…JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE!!! We had amazeball seats and the show was a-mazing! We had been waiting years (yes, years) to see him in concert and we finally made it. I still owe her money for my ticket, but the debt is soooo worth it.

June – BABY SHOWER! Oh my goodness what a wonderful, beautiful showing of love. Friends, old and new, the family from out of state, Mommy, the kids, and even The Ex and his person were there. Cookie received so, so much that we barely had room enough to receive it all.

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July – The Mother/Daughter Team was back at it in Atlanta, but this time it was Sam Smith. What a surprisingly wonderful show! We had such a great time. Me and my 8-month pregnant waddling self hung in there. Cookie had a great time too!

August – Both of my girls had birthdays. Earlier in the month, we welcomed Cookie into the world and two weeks later we celebrated a beautiful young lady and her Sweet 16. School started too and we had a Class of 2019 man in the house and a fresh Junior (Class of 2020). What a year of extremes…

September – Young Gun and I went on our first date post-baby and we chose to celebrate with a Childish Gambino concert. I surprised him with floor seats. He was so stoked. We almost got within touching distance of Gambino, but security blocked us (booo). It was an amazing show. To top it all off, big Bro and Sis got some baby watching action in.

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October – Me and my girls went out for brunch one morning. The Girl and I were awake and Cookie woke up too and I just said: “Let’s go to brunch.” We left the boys snoring in the bed and had a wonderful mid-morning. I didn’t have a ton of cash, but the little I had, we used on yummy pancakes, waffles, hot chocolate, and tea. Time (and money) well spent.

November – Cookie went to daycare for the first time. At first, it was bitter, but seeing her progress in such a short time helped to turn the bitter sweet. Seeing just how well cared for she is and the fun she has is wonderful. And (as much as I complained about it), it was actually nice to get back to a semblance of a routine.

December – I found my voice (and breath)…again *swoon*

~SM

A [Voice] Is A [Voice]…No Matter How Small

“What promises has God revived in your heart to trust him for and believe again? What has He whispered to your heart?” (Grit & Virtue)

I have been trying to answer this question for a week now and nothing has jumped out. Thankfully, the fog I have lived in recently is lifting, but it still hasn’t cleared completely. Perhaps once it does, I can hear. But with the little peace and sunshine parting the icky weather, I can hear something. A [voice] is a [voice]….no matter how small (smile).

Horton, one of the world’s largest creatures, is a gentle giant who happens to hear the smallest voice. The voice was so small and so quiet, hardly no one could hear it. But, here came along a large, loud being open enough to hear what others would not…could not. Despite ridicule and some bumps, he listened to the voice and vowed to help whoever was behind it. He listened. He allowed himself to believe it, and his heart was big enough, open enough to receive it.

Taking a lesson from Horton, I am listening to the little Who in my soul. I cannot speak to the promises God has revived in my heart. I can’t hear that at the moment. If I turn everything off, close my eyes and tune in I can hear ‘peace’. Amongst the static in my ears, just under the current of thoughts, I can hear peace.

Perhaps that is all I am meant to hear at the moment.  God knows I have had enough to listen to this year. Maybe to absorb the goodness of the small voice, He’s giving it in tiny baby doses. Just a small voice, willing to be heard amongst the big, loud world.

With peace comes so much for me. It is pregnant with endless possibilities. With peace, I gain vision, voice, confidence, love, and courage (to name a few). From peace, the birth of a better, tamer, wiser me is inevitable.

I definitely will not complain about not knowing or hearing it all right now. Instead, I will hold the little speck of peace and carry it with me keeping it safe. When the time is right, the voice will be heard loud and clear.

~SM

Finding Him In Reflection

My sister-in-love forwarded an email that gave me pause. The email was from a journal company (my weakness, besides planners) speaking on reflection of 2018 and moving forward toward 2019. I typically stay away from all of the new year’s resolution hubbub because it does not seem genuine (IMHO). If change is what a person is really after, they will tackle it any time. Why wait for January 1? Due to how 2018 started off and ended, I plan on being a ginormous hypocrite and being a part of the hubbub. And I think I will start with the email.

I am far from a heathen, but I must admit, God and I have been distant lately. My fault entirely. I allowed a lot of the important parts of my wellness to get swallowed up by other things happening around me, and my relationship with Him was one. When all else fails in my life, faith is the one constant saving me every time. Today, it has faltered and I have no doubt it is because I moved farther away from the source. When I read the email, it painfully reminded me of how far I have wandered. But, thank God for His mercy and grace. Even if I have wandered far from Home, He continues to keep the light on…just for me.

In order to find my way back Home, I have got to stop going in the other direction. I can’t front and say I haven’t been hiding. More and more I have been cutting my circle closer and closer, allowing it to dwindle down to nothing. I have been ducking my head and being passive because parts of me preferred not to even deal. But if I am going to take this upcoming journey and if I am going to get better, I have to turn around and open my eyes. Nothing is ever as scary as the thought of something. The real thing might be hard and a little intimidating, but it is the thought of it being something more than it is that creates hysteria. Instead of playing the scary-thought loop in my head, I need to uncover my eyes, about-face and stare it down.

For the next nine days, I will take a look back at these past twelve months and reflect on the wins. The bad stuff is easy to point out, but there was good. There was great. The first order of business in shrinking the scary is measuring it up against the good. God is in it all, but for me, it is easier to see Him and understand Him in the good. So, I will be intentional when I look back and reflect. I will seek understanding. I will seek goodness and light. I will search for Him in it all.

I can’t say I will be a completely different person when I reach the other side, but I can say that I will be on my way. There is no magic pill to finding your way. There are no ruby slippers to click or fantasy tornadoes whirling about to carry me Home. There is only courage and dirty work, and, if I have nothing else, I know I have the courage to put in the dirty work.

~SM

Finding 40: A Journey of Fortunate Events

The big four-oh. To my sixteen-year-old self, this is twenty-four years past old. To my thirty-nine-year-old self, it’s just another chance to get right. In six months, I will be celebrating a few milestones and I have plans and emotions for each of them…. Except…well…forty.

You would think the woman with five 2018-19 planners (probably a sickness) would have a solid plan for her big year. I spent the last year in my dirty thirties dealing with some major extremes, so naturally, you would think I would spend the first year in my forties shedding it all and dancing in the sun.

Here’s the problem, and it could be the mind/body/spirit-numbing Novocain 2018 talking, I can’t think of anything worth the energy. I want nothing. No lists. No buckets. Nada. Nope. Nothing. I suppose this means I will quietly allow myself to slip out of thirty’s armor and into the satiny little number of forty. I will most likely just keep my feet on the ground and lazily power through. I have spent forty years making mistakes, pushing, goaltending and climbing. It is okay to stop and not force myself to smell a rose, start a business or rebuild. I can just be….right?

Unfortunately, I can’t. There is no way I can sit back and watch life pass by. Trust, I want to. I am tired. I don’t have the energy to deal with the bucket listing and such, but I can muster up a lil’ sumpin. I also can’t say I have must-do items I am looking forward to because honestly, I don’t. What I do have is a red-dirt dusty, slightly bumpy path ahead with dim light overhead. I don’t need lists or big goals. Hell, making it to work on time is goal enough for me. I need no demands. I just need a good pair of shoes and the permission to go.

All of those previous lists and plans were always about finding who I had never really known. All of it was about validation. Job well done! I wanted to hear. You look great! I wanted eyes to say. She’s amazing! I wanted people to think. I can finally say, I don’t need it or want it. I found myself years ago and I like her. We became friends. We found our way to love and joy. We want for nothing. However, we never made the journey to a specific set of coordinates. This will be new. Together we are setting out on a journey to find forty and see what it is all about. The adventure and the discovery along the way is everything. Hope she’s ready…this should be fun.

~SM

Planners, Paper, Pens…Oh my!

Paper. All types. Pens. All kinds. Planners. Every one. If it is an office supply, I am drawn to it. It has been like that always. I have journals, notebooks, planners, pens, stickers, labels, folders, markers, crayons, post its, pencils, paper, dividers, rulers, calculators, tape, binders and page protectors in various locations (neatly) tucked away. If I get stressed, I go to the store in search of the perfect notebook. Sometimes, I just stand and hug a pack of filler paper. *sigh* Don’t judge.

When B2S time comes, I start making lists in July. This past August I had a carriage full of school supplies and The Girl just shook her head. “Mommy,” she said with amusement and slight pity in her eyes, “we’re in high school. We really don’t need all that stuff. Just get paper and binders. That’s it.” My eyes fell on the carriage full of boxes of crayons and markers, several notebooks and binders, construction paper, two types of glue, pencil pouches and the like. I smiled sheepishly as I started releasing the booty. For most of my issues, I know the source, but this? With this, I was clueless…until recently.

Overly excited about the discovery that Michael’s had a one day sale on planners, Young Gun sat staring at me.

“What?” I asked baffled by his look of…hmm…no.

“No,” he said.

“No, what? I didn’t buy one,” I protested.

“Good! You have a drawer full already that you don’t use.” Lies. Those, people, are lies. Each planner has a purpose and I use them all the time. He just doesn’t pay attention. “Why do you like paper so much,” he asked. I shrugged. That was a good question. I had no idea.

“I don’t know why I like paper stuff so much.” Silence filled the air as I put my brain to work really trying to understand. After about a minute had passed and my puzzler was sore, I said, “Well, take the planner, for instance. There is something so exciting about it. The way it smells, the cleanliness of it all. There’s so much possibility.”

Ah-ha! And there it was.

For thirty plus years I have been in love with paper and pens (and anything closely office related), and for the better part of twenty, I have felt like a weirdo for the love affair. But here, hanging in the air, was the answer to why this moth is drawn to that particular flame. There is so much possibility. The same can be said for pens and pencils, crayons and markers. The potential is enormous!

 What can be created within the pages of a journal? What life-altering words can be written on paper? What power can be wielded with the pen? Billion dollar businesses have been formed from thought spilled from a pen. Lives have been forever changed by what was poured out onto a blank page!  *swoon*

Anyway, I ended up not buying a new planner. Even though I had a better understanding of why it all meant what it meant, I also had an obligation to myself to be a responsible human being and not hoard…and, uh, also, I couldn’t make it to the store in time.  But, hey, at least I put a face with the name on this age-old love affair. Perhaps now I can put it to good use and actually create something on those marvelously beautiful blank spaces.

 

An Open Letter: Thank U, Next

I’m so #$%&ing grateful for your mess. Tis true, Ari didn’t quite say it like that, but that is how I carry it. It is the only way I can put you and your crap to bed. If I had things my way, I would be pushing you into angry bees nests and running my car through your front door, but thank goodness I cannot.

You have made what should have been sweet, bitter and rotten. Your nasty words managed to soak to the bone what should have been good and clean. You built a house with walls of sorrow and unworthiness and crammed in all of the innocence you could find, locking the door behind you. You single-handedly crushed love and replaced it with a great, unwavering disdain. As far as I can tell, you sir/madam are a monster only here for the amusement of everything ugly.

Believe it or not, I don’t hate you. Actually, as I stand here, talking to you, I feel sorry. I am sorry you are so clueless. Sorry, you will miss out on greatness (oh if you only knew). I am sorry you were used as a tool to tear open and poison. I am so, so sorry for you. I can see you wearing your unhappiness like a heavy coat, your head hanging low when no one is looking. I can see the lack of love like an open, festering sore. The secrecy of your lies weighing you down. The smell of the dead bodies you buried oozes from your pores and no matter how much you cover it with beautiful fabrics or flowery fragrances, you still smell it.

I am sorry you felt you were in the right. I am sorry you felt entitled. I am sorry you stumbled and fell. One too many ill-fated cards atop your house will make it all come tumbling down, sooner rather than later. And when it does, I will not have shelter to share. You will have to weather the storm alone.

I thank you for your mess. I thank you for allowing me to see you for who you really are. I thank you for allowing your mask to crack and the truth spill out, if only for a moment. I thank you for the words aplenty and the blame. I am grateful because, without you, there would be no me.

Isn’t it funny how that works? (C’mon. It won’t hurt. You can smile. It is funny.) You spend your days being wicked, and the end result is your misery, yet those who have had to bear the brunt of your abuse come out shiny and new.

I want to shake your hand. Yes, the one that stirs the pot housing your witches brew. I get to go off and be shiny (aren’t you excited for me). I get to be newer and greater and better than you will ever be. I get to witness the moments you only wish you could. I get to stand tall and pretend you don’t exist.

For that, my friend, I say Thank U…Next (wink).

~SM

Do Your Boobs Hang Low?

Can you tie them in a bow? I can’t quite do that, however, if I am laying just so I think I can toss one over my shoulder. Hey, listen, age happens. Things drop. Hips hurt. Knees remind you you are definitely mortal. Of course, there are always plumpers and fillers, doctors and knives to fix those sort of things. But why bother? I figure, if it hangs low—let it. If you can throw it to and fro—do it. Its all temporary anyway.

Acceptance. It is the first stop on the journey to find 40. I cannot be flip with everything in life, flicking a boob and middle finger. There are some aspects of life I have to accept, and the most important item on the list is my body. Like, for real this time.

This soft ol’ gal has helped me run twenty whole, real (slow) miles (and crawl the other six). She has held three kids and spit out each one healthy. She has looked the other way when Patron shots were aplenty and she has kept on pushing when the tank was below E. She has endured weight lifting, Insanity, hiking, biking, and running when the scale (and knees) said it probably wasn’t a good idea. She has kept me when day turned to night turned to day and no sleep was had. She has fed babies and barely fed herself. She has managed to continue to love and provide for me and those around me when all I could do was point out her every, miniscule flaw. She wore the white hat. She was the gladiator when I couldn’t be. She kept me standing in the sun.

Looking back, it breaks my heart to remember the things I thought/said about myself. I was always so busy trying to look how I thought beauty and comfort should that I neglected what was already wonderfully made. I was so worried about revering what I didn’t have, I neglected who I had.

On this first leg of the journey, I have got to carry as little as possible. I have got to step onto the path with only the necessities in hand. I cannot possibly expect my body to carry burdens never meant for her to carry. She has enough to handle. She will have her hands full, anyway. She’s got to learn how to tie these boobs in a bow 😉

~SM

Trusting My Lonely

This has been…eventful to say the least. So many parts of my life, our lives, have been rearranged that it is dizzying to think what may happen next. In the span of a year, I have gained and lost. I have managed to swallow pain and grief whole to push forward and I have regurgitated brokenness. However, on the same hand, I have welcomed love—complete and rooted—with open arms. I have recognized that I am not okay, but I have stood ready for the fight. With only 4 weeks left until this whirlwind of a year is over, I’m unsure if I have anything left.

But…I do. I do have something, a mustard seed, of strength left. Each morning, I manage to keep my sanity intact, my unraveling in check and my heart open. I find moments to dance foolishly, laugh deeply, heartily, and exhale shaking off the dirt and grime. That counts for something, right? So, as the end looms overhead, I have a choice. Only one choice. Find my footing.

It won’t be easy, not with the people in my life I must stand tall for, but I can shed this version of myself—this beaten, bruised, tired, unhealthy, guilt ridden, negative, angry version of Me behind the scenes. I can start over. I have do it on my own, just Me & Me.  I cannot look outward for what is needed inward. No friend, no husband, no new age guru, no book or job can give me what I need. I can give to myself what is necessary, when it is required.

Life, as I have learned, is short. It is messy, complicated, emotional and it is but a small portion of something too big to comprehend. It is all we have. It is all I have. I have to breathe. I have to live. I have to shed the insecurities, the worry, the anxiety and breathe. Unfortunately, I can’t do that in this space. This strange version of myself isn’t working any longer. I love you, I do, but I think it’s time for a new step in the direction of anew. It’s time we go our separate ways and I take this leg of the journey alone.

So, I say to you, Me, “It’s time I let you go. I made the mistake of writing your name on my heart. Cuz your colors show…I’ve been your doll that you poke for fun too long. So, you should go. Don’t look back. I won’t come back. Can do that no more….Go get your praise from someone else. You did a number on my health. My world is brighter by itself and I can do better…I gotta trust my lonely…(Alessia Cara, Trust My Lonely)

It will take time, I know. I have certainly been here before, and that is okay. There is no shame in re-evaluating and pruning what isn’t growing. There are some things I must relearn. There are some places to mend. There are some new rules of thumb. There are so many parts of the world left to see and there’s more than one way to get there. There are some people I must let go, some places I cannot return, some grieving to be done and some crosses to carry but I can do it. I know I can.

~SM

Happy Anniversary Sadie May!

Whelp…we made it. We made it through The Split, The Boy’s and The Girl’s antics. We made it through the confusion of Life and the possibility of New Love. We moved out of our old home and tipped our hats to good times. We had discussions about sweaty armpits and naked vaginas. We grew a little stronger as time passed. We learned that thinking too much is definitely not a good thing. It has been a fun, full ride. We made it.

A lot can happen in a year. It is safe to say not only did I manage to pack away a marriage, but I also opened myself up to love again. I managed to grow up a little and be okay with who I grew into. A lot can happen in 365 days.

Kay, a good running buddy of mine, suggested (well…pushed is more like it) I write in this arena. I am so glad she did. She said it would do me some good to get it all out. I can’t say she was wrong. I am pretty sure you don’t always want to hear about what goes on in my life. There are real life tragedies happening out there everyday. Reading about random things like what to wear on a first date or wearing The Boy’s deodorant is not exactly life changing. But just knowing that you stuck around to take a peek anyway means the world.

So, cheers to us because we made it! Here’s to another 365. Who knows what will happen next 😉

Yours Truly,

Sadie May

What IS This, Exactly?

I am not one for a bunch of emotion. I think these past two years have been the most outwardly emotional I have been in quite some time (or maybe ever). I know what those look/feel like. I know what fear looks like; I know what joy feels like; I know what anger says….but as of late I am a walking cesspool of butterflies and smiles. WTF is that???

I caught myself smiling at the ceiling at work one morning–lost in thought. I found myself battling butterflies and squishy insides one afternoon. I called Brooklyn yesterday and literally screamed in her ear for no reason other than just to get whatever this crap is out. What is happening to me?

I left my car keys hanging in the car door. I left my office keys hanging in my desk drawer. I can barely string together a sentence or comprehend what people are saying because my brain is like scrambled eggs (gosh that sounds good right now…I’m starving…see what I mean…lost focus). My heart skips beats and I swear I blush about 50 times a day. I am a walking, barely talking skin bag full of squishiness and fog.

Even now I sit with butterflies in my belly, floating from one end to another. Do I have some sort of disease? Is it Shingles? I have had chicken pox, you know. Scarlet Fever? The Flu? It’s not crabs because my gentiles don’t itch. And, no, I am not with child–this uterus is on lock down. Perhaps the Zombie Virus is a real thing and my body is fighting it with a vengeance? Whatever is happening, it feels funky but it feels good. I feel like I am floating beyond Cloud 9.

~SM