It’s the First Day of Fall

I’m so excited. It’s the first day of fall and it’s a beautiful 82 degrees here in Maryland. I wish you many cool days and cool evenings with the leaves blowing at your feet. I wish you apple cider, cinnamon scones, pumpkin patches and a scary Halloween. I wish you a beautiful season where all your cares are minor.

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Today is the International Day of Peace

I saw this when I started loving photos on Facebook for my friends and seeing these beautiful bursting hearts. I was amazed. It was love everywhere…

 

Cute huh? So, I searched the internet to find out more about International Day of Peace was established by the United Nations. They have established 17 Sustainable Development Goals. But, let’s talk about some of them now.

  • Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
  • Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education
  • Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls
  • Make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable
  • Promote peaceful and inclusive societies, justice for all, and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions

 

800+ Thank You’s

I would like to thank you all for following me. I recently told Mr. C that I had 720 WordPress followers and I hoped to get 800 by my birthday January 3rd. He said, “Babe, you’ll get that in no time.” I didn’t believe him.

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You know what? He was right? As of right now, I’m at 805 WordPress followers and the list keeps growing. Thank you so much for following this divorced and dating mama who loves Jesus and her baby and will discuss everything from relationships to parenting to social injustices. You are truly appreciated.

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#Momlife Monday|Raising Positive Kids Part I

Check out this wonderful post from Niki over at The Richness of a Simple Life. I needed help with keeping Munch in a positive mindset instead of a negative one. Here’s what she said…

This post comes by request after Tikeetha read a post on perception determining your reality. She asked for tips on shaping your child’s perception when they tend to focus more on the negativ…

Source: #Momlife Monday|Raising Positive Kids Part I

Releasing Expectations – Part II

In continuing with last Friday’s post about my expectations when it came to co-parenting my ex and I had another issue that came up…

Issue #2 – The Tutoring Program

The second week of school I had received a flyer in Munch’s book bag about a tutoring program in Math and Reading. The program said 12 weeks for $150 for children in K through 5th grade. I put it to the side and said I would call them to learn more about it.

We went out of town and I forgot about the flyer. I pulled it out last week and called the name on the flyer to learn more about the program. The gentleman that I spoke to was really nice and told me to come to the first session. He explained the program and that the first session is testing to see where the children test and then we have curriculum to support their learning.

I agreed and began the long task of speaking to my ex-husband about the program. Mainly because it is on Friday evenings from 6:30 to 8 pm. We transition Munch on Fridays. His dad gets his haircut every Friday evening and when Munch is due for a haircut he will usually schedule that as well. However, this educational opportunity was affordable and we needed to make sure that Munch stayed current with math.

So, I had to talk to my ex. I was thinking that this would be an awesome opportunity for us to help our son with his struggles in math before the year ended. Munch’s old tutor was a freshman in college and although he was local, he was trying to figure out college before jumping back into tutoring. He asked me to give him until November. I agreed. I understood what it was like to be a college student.

I talked to my ex about the program and he said, “No, that’s our time. That’s when we get our hair cut.” I paused. I asked “Can’t you change your appointments until another day? It’s 12 weeks.” We went back and forth with him saying no repeatedly. I offered to take my son every Friday and meet him after the session to exchange Munch.

The answer was still no.  I was hot. These haircuts are not more important than your son getting the help he needs in math. We were at an impasse.

I had thrown off the gloves and took the stance of take me to court and see if you will win because no judge will side with you on haircuts and a track record of math issues with me paying for tutor and the grades improving because he went. I was angry and heartbroken. Why in the heck was this man making my life miserable? What kind of father makes the decision to go and get haircuts instead of tutoring.

I was doing a f*uck You and everything you stand for stance. It was stressful. I couldn’t believe that my ex was acting like an ass. A big ole’ hairy ass. But, then I stopped to reflect. I wondered was the issue deeper than the program or more about the fact that we had a failure to communicate? It was easier to walk away from this man and just parallel parent instead of co-parent, but the ramifications to Munch would have been horrific.

Munch would be caught in the middle between two adults who can’t seem to get their stuff together. Was that fair to him? Was our inability to reach common ground going to destroy the best thing that ever happened to us? I sighed.

I hoped not. I gave it a few days and then revisited the subject in another phone call the day of the program. We needed to talk. I started off by reminding him that when we initially go together it was our values and morals that allowed us to align our spirits and become husband and wife. I told him that those same desires allowed us to become parents to Munch. He agreed.

I reminded him that if we share similar values and morals why couldn’t he understand that I wasn’t trying to take his son from him? Why couldn’t he see that no matter what I only want the best for our son and I know that he does too. I explained that we can’t allow extracurricular activities to impede his academic success. We need to make changes. However, we can. We both need to do it and I was willing to do it as well. I asked him to let me check out the program and I would let him know afterwards.

He agreed. I smiled. We had reached a decision that was beneficial to our son. I didn’t feel like I won and I’m sure he didn’t feel like he won. This battling was exhausting and we both needed to work on our communication. But, for the time being Munch was winning.

Which is why I realized that I can’t say “f*uck you” to my ex husband. I had to release my expectations and try to find a happy medium. I can’t just write off the other parent (even though I wanted to) out of frustration. My Munch would suffer. I couldn’t let that happen. I released my expectations and came up with the conclusion that for the next 8 years this would be my normal. I would have to find ways to communicate and reach a happy medium for as long as possible. If for no other reason that I didn’t want to see my Munch hurt by the foolishness of his parents.

 

Just an update: This math program is sponsored through the University of Maryland at College Park (my Alma Matter) and is led under the direction of a geology professor and a CPA who coaches the soccer program too. Their purpose for founding this program was due in part by the lack of Black and Latino children who were ill prepared for college and then when they got there and were not able to sustain at at Division I school. It is held weekly at the University of Maryland at College Park and gives children an opportunity to attend class on campus. I love it. I was walking the campus and showing Munch my dorm room, the library, my class building and the building where I graduated.

This program rocks! I’ll keep you updated

 

Motivational Monday Moment – 9/19/16

Happy Monday Folks!

Today’s Motivational Monday Moment is meant to inspire you to pray. I’ve had an exhausting 24 hours. It was stressful and I allowed some things to stress me when I shouldn’t have. I know.

It’s my fault.

I was disturbed in my spirit and trying to get my emotions under control. I wish I could tell you that I have all the answers and that I’m not easily stressed, but I don’t. I’m human. I make MANY mistakes.  One of the many mistakes is getting sucked into the drama and issues of others.

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I’m emotional. I need to learn to not get sucked into drama and just pray. It’s hard though. I want to fight and argue and make a case for my side when you know what? It really doesn’t matter. I can’t change someone’s mind. I can only control my actions and me.

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I don’t owe anyone anything. I just need to be the best person that I can be. I need to keep my head in the game and stop feeling the need to validate who I am and what I am doing. I owe nothing to no one.

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When I am stressed beyond belief I forget how to pray sometimes. Has that ever happened to you? When there is so much noise in your head that your head is pounding and you forget that the only way out is to pray?

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I do. Been there. Done that. Multiple times. Even when I was alone, I knew that I was truly not alone. He was right there with me. Waiting patiently for me to come to him.

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However, I want to remind each of us how easy it is to pray through our problems. You are never alone. Just call on Him. How do you call on Him? Just by doing this…

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Call on the name of Jesus. Sometimes all you can do is just say “Jesus” and you can start to feel His power working in you. He wants us to call Him. Why? Because there is power in the name of Jesus.

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Trust me when I tell you that all you have to do is call on His name because there is power there. I know because this morning I was all out of sorts…angry, defensive and frustrated. I felt alone and I needed to get my mind right before coming into work.

You know what it was? I broke my normal routine. I usually wake up and pray and read devotionals and have prayer with Mr. C. We didn’t do it this morning. He changed his work hours and I got Munch into before and after care at school so our schedules were off. When he called me I was trying to finish up and get out of the door.

I got in the car and told him about a situation that frustrated the heck out of me. I was angry, perturbed and frankly stressed out this morning. He tried to calm me down. He said “Babe, you need to pray”. I responded “Yeah, I need to pray.” It was in a snarky town because I was in a snarky mood. We were not getting along well this morning.

But, you know what? He was right. I needed to pray. My mind was out of sorts and I was not being as I should be. I owned it. I allowed outside things to change me. I needed Jesus. I needed to pray. I needed to have my spirit renewed and refreshed. And you know what it worked.

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I started to feel better. What did I do? Nothing. I just went before the throne this morning. I owned my mood and said  a prayer…

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Dear Father,

Hallowed be thy Name

Help me this morning Lord.

I’m coming to you asking for help

You know what I’m going through

You know the pains that are disturbing my spirit

Help me to erase the pain and know that all things

work according to Your will.

That if it is in your will it will be fine.

Allow my spirit to find peace in your words and my mind to be anchored in you

Let me remember that you are sovereign and that no weapon formed

against me shall prosper

Jesus.

There’s nothing like calling the sweet name of Jesus.

Dear Lord please give my weary spirit rest. Help me to forgive those that mean me harm

Teach me how to seek peace and understanding for those who trespass against me.

Teach me how to pray for those that wish me harm.

Dear Lord you are the only true God

so it is in you will that I want to humbly reside.

Bear with me Lord.

I am weak.

I am human.

Renew my mind and renew my spirit.

Amen.

 

Releasing Expectations – Part I

This is a long post, so I’ve decided to split it up into two parts. So much to tell you. So little space. LOL. But, here goes…

I have to tell you how God is always aligning me with things when I’m least expecting it. Like last week when I was catching up on my posts, I read this great post by KE Garland entitled “Saying “F*ck you” versus Releasing Expectations as a Way to Deal with Rejection”. Long title I know, but this post was right on time. I needed to read it when I read it.

Why?

Because I was going through a co-parenting struggle. I was trying to get my ex husband to see the benefit in some things. Mainly…me meeting his new girlfriend and this new tutoring program that I wanted to enroll our son in. Here’s where the article came into play…she was reminding me that I should release expectations and not just say F*ck you baby daddy!

I was expecting my ex husband and I to agree on ALL or 99.99% of the things that have to do with our son. Okay, maybe that was a little delusional, but at least 98% of things. Was I being fair? Nope. He’s entitled to his opinion, I just wish his opinion was mine. LOL.

However, it wasn’t. That was frustrating as heck and I was feeling like “every time we take three steps forward in co-parenting, we take ten steps backwards”. It was a never ending cycle of bad communication. I was at the “F*ck you and I will do what I want point”.

Don’t judge me. You’ve been there too.

We all have.

We all want what we want when we want it. Fact of life. But, that really doesn’t work in marriage and it really doesn’t work in divorce. Add to the fact that you’re trying to co-parent and you are really screwing yourself. I didn’t want the screwing to continue so I tried to have a conversation with my ex husband about some things.

Issue #1 – The New Girlfriend

Please don’t be confused by the title. It’s not an issue. I’m ecstatic that my ex has found love again. That means that we didn’t damage each other beyond repair (which is definitely a good thing). However, he decided that he would like his new girlfriend to pick up our son from the bus stop one day because he had a conflict. I didn’t feel comfortable with this. Why? Because I don’t know her, never met her, don’t have a license plate number, last name or telephone number for her.

Some people would say do you really need this? To which I would reply loudly “Hell Yes!” I have only one son. Munch is the light of our lives and I don’t allow people to drive my child around that his dad doesn’t know without me in the car. It has never happened and it never will. Heck, my own mama wouldn’t allow my son to be picked up by someone (male or female) that she had never met from her house. So, why would I allow a total stranger to me to drive my son around?

Do you know what he responded? She’s not a stranger to Munch. Munch knows her and really likes her. You know it took everything in me to not respond “Munch is 8 and he really likes and knows about butterflies, but you won’t see me allowing a butterfly to drive him around.” But, I said a quick prayer and asked the Lord to bridle my tongue. I explained that I would never allow someone he’s never met to drive our son around.

I wouldn’t. End  of case. I explained to my ex that if he’s at the “letting her drive our son around stage” then she needs to meet me. Introductions are a must. I explained that I would never allow my friend to pick up our son and drive him somewhere without me. Why? Can you imagine for a second a total stranger (to you) picking up your one and only child and then getting into a car accident (no fault of their own) and your precious 8 year old ends up in the hospital and your ex spouse calls to tell you this. What do you think would happen? Let me break it down for you…

All hell would break loose. I would be cussing and fighting her and my ex husband. My family would be doing the same. The police would be called and I would be in handcuffs. The news would report it and I would lose my good job. Why? Because mama don’t play that. Not today and not with my Munch.

We had a LONG conversation about this and he was cool. He said “Okay” and will be setting up a meet and greet in the next couple of weeks. See, that was a win-win for both of us. I get to meet the woman he’s introduced to Munch and she gets to meet the neurotic mother of a charming little 8 year old.

But, guess what he then asked? He asked could he meet Mr. C.

Hold up! What a minute!

What? Why?

Mr. C has only met Munch once. I don’t have him around Munch all the time. I know it’s been almost a year, but I am a protective mama and he’s respecting of that. We’re taking it S-L-O-W! Why my baby daddy got to be meeting Mr. C? I was feeling some kind of way. Is that wrong?