Visions of my life

As a little girl and even as a teen, I somehow knew my future. I pictured myself as a single independent woman. Not with a husband who was my best friend or a husband I fought with. I pictured myself with 3 children, two girls and a boy and I even knew I would have my daughters first and my son would be my youngest. I pictured a big white house with a big yard and a couple dogs, small children running in the grass. Since I bought this house 5 years ago I’ve tried to figure out who those small children are. 
Along the way I tried to prove my vision wrong. Falling for a couple guys I told myself it was possible my vision was wrong. Each and every time I was left alone regretting ever thinking they could be the one to prove myself wrong. 

The first one blessed me with my twin girls and the realization that I could only count on myself. He taught me that I was much stronger than I ever could have imagined. I was quickly pushed into single motherhood at just 19 with two beautiful babies on welfare. I was sure I was doing everything wrong but devoted to doing my best. I think back and am amazed at myself. I honestly don’t think I would have fought so hard to become who I am if not for those little sets of eyes that melted my heart. I was sure I could never love anyone or anything as much as those girls. They stole everyone’s hearts and made every kid jealous wishing they could be them. I wanted to make those girls proud and give them a good life full of happiness and love. They gave me purpose.

The next guy took me from myself for a long time but in the end he taught me all about the strength of a mother’s love and forgiving myself. Along came my son, this amazing little boy who I was sure I couldn’t love, but he became the light of our world. Those girls were instantly in love with him and his little hands and tiny toes. He had this beautiful smile and he glowed when he saw me or his sisters. As much as he wanted to love his father, he knew he was not a good man. My son feared his father because of the abuse he witnessed. When that man was done with everything he put us through, it would have been easier for me to down a bottle of pills to escape the reality of what I allowed, and not one person would have blamed me. He put us through a living hell. But those beautiful kids that god blessed me with, I owed it to them to fight. To keep going even when I was sure I couldn’t do it. A mother’s love is the strongest thing in this world. And I had to try my best, even if it wasn’t good enough and even if I fucked up along the way, I could not leave them. And although I still struggle with forgiving myself, I do believe my children forgave me a long time ago.

After that I spent nearly 10 years focused on my kids and myself before dating and getting in another serious relationship. That one taught me how big my heart is and to accept my vision. As much hurt and disappointment I’ve lived through, I still have a great big heart ready to love. I still want to believe in the good in people, even when they don’t have good intentions and my instincts warn me. I want to believe my doubts are wrong. Stupid maybe, but maybe it’s also my big heart and that’s not a bad thing.

In my vision I wasn’t alone and miserable. In fact the sun was shining and I’m laughing. I’m filled with warmth from my life, I felt surrounded by peace and happiness. I knew I lived a comfortable life, not fancy but stable and strong. I knew that I had survived a storm, but I felt the calm of where my life was. I felt love, love for myself and for the journey to get me there. 

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I can’t lie

I was fighting for something that wasn’t even there. The beautiful ideas he painted, the empty promises he told and false hope he planted. He couldn’t have been any clearer with any words he said than what his actions said. I’d be lying if I said I didn’t hate him now. 

For me, he was my best friend. I shared my world with him, confessed my deepest thoughts, vented about my frustrations. I was generous to him and his children because I loved them all. I saw a future growing old together, sitting on the porch in our rockers. I accepted that he was not a “go-getter” or ambitious because of all the other great things I saw. Correction, all the temporary great things. Again once he settled in, it all stopped. Back came the eggshells and arguing. Me purposely staying late at work to avoid being around his irritability. Me avoiding interacting with him because I didn’t have the energy for the drama. It seemed no matter what I said or did, it upset him. My frustrations grew while he again found a way to stop working and that made him unable to function and crippled with depression he said. I tried, I tried so hard. It all changed so fast and for the first time it felt like I was watching a movie, not living it. 

One night we went to bed for the night and out of no where I started crying, balling and I didn’t know how to tell him why. I knew in my gut where things were going. I knew he had changed back and this man was not who I thought he was. I knew all the kids would be hurt, how much harder this would be for everyone this time because of the hope we all had. I knew what was happening and it literally broke my heart and filled it with disappointment. I had given so much of myself and I knew in that moment what was happening. I could see him clearly and god how that hurt.

He lied with every breath he took. He started sleeping on the couch, I think for attention while he sulked in his “poor me” routine. I reached out to help him, even to his mom for guidance how to help him. All I was told was he was fine and for a short time I felt like it was me. That I brought out this ugly person in him. I filled him with misery because how else could he fall apart again after I did everything for him. I became uncomfortable around him. I sat and watched him more, listened to his words and mannerisms unlike I ever had before. I became so cautious about everything I said or did around him because he was annoyed by everything. He began spitting insults at me, things that were untrue but said to hurt. Every conversation revolved around how I made him feel. He didn’t talk to me anymore unless it was to lash out or complain. Soon enough I couldn’t stand to look at him anymore. I resented him for falling apart again. Eventually I didn’t even want him on my couch. I became disgusted by this manipulating useless man who obviously played me. I was humiliated that I gave him everything and again he fucked it up. I became overwhelmed by the disaster he created in my home and the expense of trying to put it back together while supporting everyone on my own. I was appalled that he thought any of his actions should be acceptable. He began trying to intimidate me to fear him as he stomped around MY home. He laughed at the thought that I could make him leave. This was his BIGGEST mistake of all. To carry himself thinking he was in control. I have been through to much in my life to ever allow a man the power to control me, in any way. Bringing police to my home with my children here caused my daughter a full blown panic attack all because he thought he could force me to continue supporting his lazy ass… there was no going back after that. He fucked up to the point I saw him as a complete stranger.

To him, I was a joke. A meal ticket he thought he could manipulate so he could sit on his ass avoiding responsibilities. He spent so much energy lying about what he did and who he was, I was exhausted for him. In the end, he was the ugliest person I knew. He knew what we had been through and he came and broke our mended hearts anyway. 

 Now I realize, I never really knew him at all. 

Life is good



Apology to my children


1- I am the one who ignored his red flags. 

2- I am responsible for bringing him in my children’s lives. I took the risk with all our hearts and time by bringing someone in who I should have known was capable of having a negative impact. I was selfish in not considering how it would affect my kids to see me so close to an unhealthy man again. 

3- I pray my children forgive me.

4- I have completely closed the door.

5- I will again show you that strong independent amazing mom who makes you proud to have. Our lives will only continue to get better, be better and fulfilling.

I am a rarity 

I have said this most of my adult life. I know there are not many, if any, in this world like me. 

Today is literally independence day, coincidence?

I can feel the changes inside. My soul is whispering “you are strong and wise beyond your years. You have so much to teach your children. Keep the warmth inside your heart, don’t let life turn you cold and bitter. Be brave and continue to love. You my dear are a priceless gift. Continue to use the pain and disappointment to strengthen yourself. It will teach you appreciation. Take the lessons life is offering and absorb them in your core. Share your wisdom with the world. Stand tall, proud and confident.” 

I am Heather

I keep thinking about the last 2 months. How quickly you changed once you moved in. The eggshells we all walk on around you, your miserable attitude and hate for life. I keep thinking about our last deep talk on the couch and how psychotic you seemed, how evil and cruel. And I keep asking myself why am I helping you? Why am I letting you stay one more minute here.. you put yourself in this situation and you knew exactly what you were doing. This time it’s not about your selfish world crashing. Its about you trying to destroy mine and my kids world, for continuing to scar your kids. Its about you refusing to grow up and be a good man, a father your kids can depend on and be proud of. Its about all the god damn deception. 

Am I hurt? Absolutely. But it’s a different hurt. I don’t miss you, I miss what you said it was. I miss the (always temporary) admiration you have for me. I am disappointed in myself for believing you, for giving you a chance, for loving your kids, for believing we were a team. I’m disappointed in myself for letting you lie to me and for knowing better but wanting it to be true. I’m angry for you disappointing my kids and yours, all who have seen enough disappointment in their young lives. I’m angry you want this repeating exhausting cycle, since for over 2 years all I’ve heard is how you want better and will do it. Truth is you are in no better a place now than when we met. I’m disappointed I fell for all your bullshit. I’m disappointed in myself for ever believing you. I’m angry that I am being nice to you. I’m pissed you reminded me why I stayed alone for 10 years. I’m disgusted you make everything about you and your mental state, sulking when anyone has had enough of your shit. I’m sad you make your life you needing, taking and depending on others when you have so much potential to be a great man. I’m sad you have no understanding of loyalty or integrity. Mostly I’m sad I ignored it all for too long. 

BUT I am grateful for my strength. Proud of the person I am and the love I have to give. Thankful for all the struggles and pain I’ve been through and my determination to be better each and every day. I’m proud of my hard work and what I have achieved on my own. I have walked away from everything and built my life better than before. I am proud how I push myself to succeed and that I won’t accept failure. I am Heather, and yes I know I’m one amazing badass filled with greatness and I’m done allowing you to mooch and suck out my energy. 

Please find it in your heart to stop using this amazing woman who is a single mom. It is not my job or responsibility to finacially provide for you, nor is it your parents or ex-wife’s. The fact that you have absolutely no where to go should tell you what you have been doing isnt working because everyone in your life has had enough. You need to figure it out and stand on your own. Stop feeling sorry for yourself and every scar you have gotten in your 38 years and ask yourself “how can I see this differently?”. 

Focus on all the love around you. 

Your parents go above and beyond for you, that’s a gift. 

They are alive and healthy and not only able to be there, they choose to, gift. 

Your girls crave seeing you happy, stable and strong because they love you and want you in their life, gift. 

You have an amazing friendly personality that is so much fun to be around, gift. 

Sarcasm and humor, gifts.

You are a jack of many trades, able to do a wide variety of things, gift. 

You are physically stronger than a bull, gift. 

You have a beautiful smile and gorgeous eyes, gift. 

You can work a room, manipulate even the wisest of people, gift in sales.. Lol

You are smart and your mind is constantly spinning, gift.

You are a kind, loving and caring, gift.

You can be level headed and a great friend to talk to and give advice, gift.

Stop letting yourself drown in self-doubt and just fucking do it all! 

12 things I learned from my mom

Today I woke up to the news of a friend’s mother passing. They were very close and I cannot even imagine the pain that she’s feeling. I can’t help but fear how will I handle that loss. This made me realize that I need to tell my mother how I feel about her.  Not how much she drives me nuts and annoys the hell out of me sometimes. I need to tell her the amazing things that I see in her, the amazing things that she taught me and how grateful I am to have her as my mother.

  1. You’re always there for family, no matter what. 

Growing up my family was very chaotic and dysfunctional but one thing was always for sure, no matter how angry you were at each other when trauma or hardship fell on a family member my mom threw it all aside and was there, even if it was her worst enemy. No matter how crazy my mom’s sisters are, that’s one amazing thing about them. 

  2. Her never-ending ability to be there for me and my kids.

I was 18 years old, alone and single, pregnant with twins. My mother was my Lamaze coach, bought me nearly everything I needed for my babies, and stood next to me during delivery. Five years later I was pregnant with my son, again alone from a failed marriage. My mom’s husband’s uncle had committed suicide, and he was like a father to her husband. The next day I went into labor, my mom came rushing and stayed with me, held my hand and fought the doctors to keep me safe. She helped raise my kids when they were young, giving me the needed breaks for my sanity. She was a cheer leader at their school and sports events. She is the best grammy, devoted and loving. 

  3. Strength.

My mom is the strongest woman I know, both physically and mentally. My mom has lost everything and stood strong and rose from the ashes, dusted herself off and was ready for more. She proved a woman can do anything a man can. She taught me to never depend on a man or anyone else. To be independent and strong. 

   4. No matter how hard it gets, you are mom.

I’m sure my mom had many days she wanted to run away, abandon all the responsibilities of raising kids and live a different stress free life. It’s hard work and too many times you feel unappreciated. You’re always on duty and your life revolves around what the kids need. You want new shoes? Too bad, kids need them first. My mom taught me to sacrafice my wants for my children, that they come first. And you work as hard as you can to give them a safe and good life.

 

 5. Even moms get weak and that is okay.

All the stressors of life gets heavy, even for a super-mom’s shoulders. The load sometimes becomes too much to bare and you fall. You get off track, you get a little selfish and want to put yourself first for a change. This is normal. It’s okay to fall. It’s even okay if you need a little pill every day from your doctor to help deal with the stress, as long as you get back up. You cannot stay down. You must regroup and get back to doing what needs to be done. No if, ands, or butts.

   6. Home-cooked meals are the best.

There is absolutely nothing like a home cooked meal made by my mom. Even as an adult I think my mom’s food is better than mine. It’s the love and memories from all the years she created full course delicious meals on a very limited budget while running on fumes. Everyone sat down to eat and chatted about their day, together. It kept us close.

   7. Have respect for what you have.

My mom came from a poor family. Her father’s parents came to the United States as immigrants from Croatia. Her mother grew up right here in South Omaha on 13th Street. They had 7 daughters in a very small home and it was normal for my grandmother to take in neighbor kids or relatives who were in need. While they didn’t have much money, they appreciated what they had. The small home was well kept and always clean. Growing up my mom was this way as well. We didn’t have much money but anyone on the outside was always impressed with our immaculate yard and home. Laundry & dishes done daily, vacumming and sweeping. No one came to our house messy, ever. 

Once my sister spilled red kool-aid on our new cream colored carpet in the living room. Quickly she tried to clean with bleach to remove the stain before our mom had a chance to see it. Long story short we all had to spend a whole weekend bleaching that carpet to match that stain, with windows open and gasping for air. My mom was raised to respect and take care of what she had, to take pride in yourself, your home and your family.
 

 
   8. The kids are a reflection of the parents. 

As kids, we were always clean and had nice clothes. Me and my sister’s hair was always braided or in pig-tails. We were taught respect and manners. It was obvious my mom worked hard at being a mom like she had with the many stories she shared about her childhood. She took pride in that and made sure to carry on those values with her children.

  

   9. Work hard.

My mom always worked too much. Probably 60 hours a week or more, whether it was with one job or spread out with two or three. She strived to have nice things but knew the value of hard work. My mom was never afraid to get her hands dirty. Whether she cleaned apartments for side money, or took on projects like a rental house deal, she never cut corners and always cleaned everything so it was fit for a king. And she never let the long hours at work affect her home. That woman would run on just a few hours of sleep. She never slept through the night, she would get up to switch the laundry over and fold the finished load through the night.  I’m sure it would have been easier to cut herself some slack, but she never did.

   10. Most importantly she taught me the importance of tradition. 

The Easter Bunny and Easter egg hunts

Santa Claus 

The tooth fairy

Holiday dinners with close family and friends

Family vacations

It was not uncommon for a last minute invite from my mom to one of our holiday dinners. If she found out that someone she knew had no plans for the holiday my mom instantly opened our home so that person would not be alone. My mom would stay up all night baking pies, up at the crack of dawn to start the turkey, everything from scratch, everything amazing. When I hear of other families memories, I think yours could not compare to my mine. When I come across somebody whose family does not celebrate; on one hand (now that I’m the parent hosting these dinners) there’s a bit of me that feels jealous. Like that would be so nice to just sit home and relax on that day off. But if they have small kids, if they have little children, my heart breaks. The loss of those memories those kids are missing out on makes me sad. 

    11. Be silly, be you and laugh

I love my mother’s laugh. It’s contagious. She’s comfortable with who she is and doesn’t worry about what others think. She is who she is and I love that. She taught me to love myself and not give a shit what other people think. 

   12. Sometimes be impulsive

When you have the weight of the world on your shoulders, it’s easy to forget how to have fun. You get stuck focusing on all the responsibilities you have, bills that are due, groceries to buy, appointments to make. You forget to live life. Sometimes you need to buy yourself those shoes, or do something crazy like get a tattoo. Sometimes be spur of the moment. 

   I’m so very grateful for my mother. She taught me so many wonderful things about being a strong person and a wonderful mother. Because of her I have raised great kids who are thoughtful, loving and kind. She taught me to believe in myself, to value who I am and to be proud of what I’ve accomplished. On a rough day at work I can hear her telling me how smart I am and how impressed she is with me. That helps me regroup and get back to being my fierce self. She reminds me to know my worth and never settle. She has become my voice of reason when my frustrations cloud my emotions. I could not be who I am without her.

Mom, thank you for being you. 

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