28Mar/17

Why Do Teens Think Family No Longer Matters?

 

I find myself these days getting overly upset about the relationship with my teenage son or lack thereof should I say.  I mean I knew it would change as he got older so that is not the issue.  I did not even once think it would mean that he would not really want to have any kind of relationship with me at all and spend zero amount of time with me.  Why do teens think family no longer matters?
I raised my son from before the age of 3 until age 12 as a single full time mom.  Dad was in the picture with his regular visitations but when we separated and later divorced I was his full time parent.  I took him to his sports games and practices.  I was there at the school for every award ceremony and play.  We went to eat together and watched television and movies together.  We did a lot together.  Even once he got a bit older in those preteen years where he was so busy with friends we still had the night time.  When it was time to come in at night and wind down for the night that was our time.  We had a whole mess of television shows we liked to watch together.  We would sit next to each other on the couch watching them and talking about them.  He would sometimes hug me or lay in my lap when he was tired.  It was just the little things and small chunks of time but I enjoyed it and he always seemed to enjoy them as well.  Even up until last year at the age of 16 we still had one show we watched together on a regular basis.  Sometimes we would watch others but we always watched that one and in fact he would get rather upset if I watched it without him.  One day he went into a rant of how watching television was stupid and he was too old to be watching television with his mom.  He was “16” he would say and now he is “17” he says as though I don’t know his age even though I gave birth to him.
I have always known that things would change as he got older.  That alone is no shock to me.  It is the basic nonexistence of a relationship that I cannot seem to grasp.  He still hugs me and tells me he loves me when we are not fussing back and forth but any dedicated time for just he and I does not exist.  Even talking to him is a task in itself.  He doesn’t want me to speak to him with friends around and they are almost always around.  He does not like me texting too much and he certainly has made it all too clear he does not want to watch television with me.  I have even asked him to go to dinner or a movie as our family empowerment counselor has suggested but I get an “I don’t know” or “I am busy”.  Besides all of this what is so wrong with just sitting together and watching television together for 30 minutes.  I think the whole point of this is that family should still be important and we should make time for each other no matter what age we are.  I hope when he is 30 he will not have dinner with me because he is too old.  I cannot make sense of it all and as a mom who has always had her son at the center of her world to have a basically nonexistent relationship with him is devastating.  I feel like he is ashamed of me or just cannot be bothered with  me.  I gave birth to him and brought him into this world and have always tried to do everything I can for him but he cannot find it in his schedule to give me 30 minutes or more a week.  It is unfortunately very hurtful to me.  Why must age mean we don’t do anything with our parents or family anymore?  Isn’t family always family?
I struggle daily to deal with this and hope for a balance here somewhere between his teenage growing pains and making family time important.  I continue to try even though some days it all seems pointless.  As long as I know I try to have a better relationship or a relationship at all with my son I can look back and know that I tried.  Family is important and I think this day and age it seems our kids try to grow up way too fast in this ever changing fast paced world.


14Mar/17

Medication Does Not Cure Mental Illness

 

I always see these articles about anxiety and depression that list some of the things that people who have one or both of them wish others knew.  All of the common signs and symptoms are listed there but I have found that one thing that is rarely talked about is the fact that medication and/or therapy do not end all of your symptoms and cure your mental illness.  Medications and/or counseling and therapy are there to help you manage the symptoms of the illness.
Any of us that have these conditions have probably had someone more than once ask us if we forgot to take our medications.  Maybe they ask seriously or maybe they even make a bit of a joke out of it.  People are uneducated or maybe they don’t care to think about it.   They say things like that and maybe they really do think it.  We wish they wouldn’t because when we are in that moment of an anxiety attack or dealing with a depressive episode we don’t want to hear anything that even resembles criticism or judgment.
A few weeks ago I was in a war with my teenager because he really does not like to be told no.  He follows me around and argues with me.  Sometimes he leaves the room but always comes back.  Sometimes he even changes the argument to a new topic to keep it all going.  He has his own issues.  I was trying to continue on with what I was doing.  I kept folding the laundry and walking around the house picking things up just as I had planned.  After this had gone on for a very long time I finally began to lose myself a little.  I wanted to just sit down and work and let him go cool off and he continued coming in my office.  I had my moment of “losing my shit” after so long.  He began telling me how I was so much nicer and better when I took my medications.  I then pointed to my two medications I take for my mental illnesses and the other I take for something else and explained to him that I take them daily and that is how I stay as regulated as I do.  He then begins to mention the other pill I take sometimes when I have an anxiety attack or am about to have one.  I explain to him that my reactions have nothing to do with taking a medication.  They help manage it but that is it.
One night I was trying to hurry (because my anxiety was telling me I had to do all these things) and take out the trash so we could go out and get our Pokemon stops because we do that as a family.  I realized my sock style house shoes had gotten wet when I went out on the porch to dump the trash.  I began taking them off while I was still near the door not realizing my hand was very close to the door and my pinkie ended up stuck in the door as it shut on its own.  I began to scream because it hurt so bad and also because I had looked back and saw it happening and it did not look good.  I managed to get it out of the door and was still screaming loudly with my husband having no clue what I had done and I could not get the words out to tell him.  I tried getting in the bathroom to get a band-aid because I was also dripping blood and my stepson was in there so I quickly ran back in the living room.  My husband got me some ice wrapped in a paper towel but my finger was just throbbing.  I could not speak and I could not catch my breath.  In the middle of all of this going on I had went into an anxiety or panic attack.  I screamed repeatedly and breathed hard and fast.  It is a scary feeling to not be able to control yourself or your breathing.  My husband could not find my anxiety pill I take for these kinds of moments so I continued while trying desperately to control my own breathing without it.  In these  moments I almost feel like I am dying because the feeling can be that scary and it is not at all fun to lose control of yourself and your reactions.  I finally took the pill and eventually calmed myself down and had a band-aid on it.
A few weeks ago while in a heated moment with my son over the phone where he had not been listening to anything anyone had said to him.  I was trying to talk him out of making a huge mistake.  I finally began to scream repeatedly.  This is not something I normally do when I have an anxiety attack but this night I did.  It just felt like I had to get it all out and I really did not have control over it.  It was embarrassing to think about after it happened.  I later used Google to look and see if that was a normal response to anxiety and it was in fact a definite normal response some people have.  I think I have probably done it on a way smaller level but never like that.  I also ended up vomiting which is also something I have never done with one of my anxiety attacks, but apparently is also common.
I could tell a million more stories like these and some would be way less than these.  Sometimes it may just be me sitting in my car not wanting to go inside a store because I know there will be so many people which can also trigger my anxiety.  Sometimes it can be me just having trouble breathing a little heavier than normal.  Some people either in my life now or in the past have called me dramatic.  I have even been told to stop doing it as if I had purposely chosen to be short of breath and lose control of myself.  There is no on or off switch for anxiety or depression.  My depression has many symptoms.  I get a lack of motivation a lot.  I get decreased energy often.  It does not always mean that I am crying but sometimes I do for seemingly no reason at all or maybe it is because I just finally had the time to think about things and let it all out.  My mind sometimes will not stop thinking it seems and things run over and over in my  head like a broken record.  Some mornings are a definite struggle getting out of bed because of it.  There are so many symptoms I cannot name them all.

 

I take my medications every day.  One of them I have had increased several times and I am now on the top dosage after going through various hard times over the last few years.  Major life events definitely trigger my mental illnesses.  I recently had the second omedication added because I have a lot of stressful situations going on in my life and also some medications can lose their efficacy after so many years.  My third one I really only take when I have to.  I don’t take it when I just have the little bit of trouble breathing because not every time but sometimes it can make me sleepy and sleeping is not always an option.  I definitely try not to use it as a “crutch”.  Here is where we get to the part where people don’t understand when they say things about me or others and ask if we have not taken our medication is that it is not or they are not miracle drugs.  Taking medication and even therapy does not mean you are cured and will never have symptoms.  Medications are there to help keep you regulated to a more normal level.  Therapy is there to help you cope better and work through things.   Even those who do not have anxiety and depression are still going to have times they get anxious or depressed.  Medications help us to be more like those people on that normal mood level. I always think of the cartoon picture that floats around sometimes with Foghorn Leghorn that says something about how you have exceeded the limitations of my medication.  Well that could not be more true.  Sometimes people and situations exceed our medication.  They produce an anxiety attack or a depressive episode.  We are not being dramatic.  We are having a genuine issue that exceeded what our medication helps us with.  Everyone has their limit.  I just ask you to be mindful of this if you have someone in your life that suffers from these issues or any mental health issue.  Mental health issues are just as hard to deal with as any other physical medical issue and many times harder due to the fact these illnesses are unseen.  Unfortunately, so much stigma surrounds mental illness.  To those of us with a mental illness what we experience even on medications and with therapy is very real and we just need your support.
*****If someone you know is in emotional distress or suicidal crisis please call the suicide prevention hotline.
07Oct/16

The Smartest Way To Schedule Pins on Pinterest

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The smartest way to schedule pins on Pinterest is Tailwind!  I have just started using it but so far I am amazed and very pleased.

Save Time: Multi-board pinning, bulk upload, drag-and-drop calendar and many more shortcuts built with your busy schedule in mind.

Maximize your Reach: Automatically optimize your pinning schedule based on when your audience is most engaged.

Measure Success: Get deep insights on published content to see what’s working and what’s not.

Schedule like a Pro: Our crafty Browser Extension lets you easily create multiple pins from any site with a single click – even repins on Pinterest!

Affordable for Small Businesses, Extensible for the Enterprise

Click below for your free $30 credit…that’s two months FREE versus the usual one month free trial!

 

Take Me To Tailwind!

07Oct/16

Finally, Real Help Without the Hype for Your Direct Sales Business

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We’ve all seen it.

A Direct Sales dream story where the work-from-home lady makes millions and travels the world on her own schedule without ever having to miss her kid’s soccer practice. We wonder if it is really just a dream?

BUT we’ve also seen…

The woman working what seems like 24/7, not making much return on her effort, always posting desperately on Facebook and then her friends start avoiding her. We wonder if all of the direct sales opportunities would become a nightmare like that?

For many women, Direct Sales is the answer to real life challenges. Maybe they:

Have a job they can’t stand but need to replace the income
Need to contribute financially while also caring for the kids or for aging parents
Have a child with special needs or an illness that requires more days off than a traditional job would allow
Have an entrepreneurial spirit and thrive on the freedom of building something all their own
Have debt they are committed to paying off once and for all and want to speed up the process
Had an unexpected life change through a spouse’s death or a divorce
Needing to retire but don’t have enough money saved to do so without drastically changing their lifestyle
Direct Sales can be a great solution to each of these needs! It offers freedom, a level playing field regardless of race, gender, education level, background, or track record. When Direct Sales is done right, it can change lives, help people achieve their dreams, and make it possible for them to give generously to others.

But you also know that one day you can see the vision and the next day, after a “no-show” or just a rude “no” you’re tempted to throw in the towel. It can be TOUGH building your own Direct Sales business. Don’t make it any tougher than it has to be!

Join me for a training where we will learn from the TOP Christian women leaders in Direct Sales. Why make our own mistakes doing it the hard way when we can learn from THEIR mistakes & successes and build our business much faster?

iBloom Direct Sales Marketing Webinar

Click HERE to sign up for FREE!

Learn from the top Christian Leaders in the Direct Sales world.

Monday, October 17th, 2-4 PM ET

If you are in Direct Sales (or hope to be someday), come learn from the BEST and save yourself LOTS of unnecessary hassle & hustle. These women have built success on their own schedule…and YOU can too!

Recap: (Check which one you want)

______ Go slow by figuring it all out on your own, possibly taking years off of your life

______ Go fast by joining me at the iBloom Direct Sales Marketing Webinar and learn from the TOP Christian Women Leaders in Direct Sales

I really hope you’ll join me! Oh, and if you know someone in Direct Sales who could benefit from this FREE training, please share this post with her. The more the merrier!

 

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05Oct/16

My Review of JASTEK Multicharging Cable

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I absolutely love this charging cable. I am a big electronics user. I have a lot of items to charge. I have tons that use micro USB such as headphones, mouse and more and there are two micro USB cords on this. I also have an iPad and iPhone for the lightening cord. This is super handy to be able to charge some of them at the same time on one item. The clip is awesome as well. I can clip it to the inside of my bag or purse and take it with me. This is so convenient for me. My life is super busy and I take my items with me everywhere so it is so nice to have this all together. I did receive this product for free and am giving my honest review but I attest all statements made in this review are made from me based on my personal use. I am including an affiliate link below to view and/or purchase this cable via Amazon. You can also view my Youtube review of this product.

25Sep/16

My Influenster Back To School VoxBox

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This is me holding my very first VoxBox from Influenster.  I qualified for the Back To School VoxBox.  Influenster is a great site that uses your social medial presence to determine when you qualify for certain boxes.  The items in these boxes come to you for free in exchange for your reviewing the products.  After you qualify you then can apply to that particular campaign.  Once you are accepted and get your box you can earn points that help you in the future along with your social media presence to earn more campaigns in the future.  You earn points for using the products and doing various things on social media with your box and the products contained within it.  They have an app as well so some actions are easily performed using various things within this app.  For example there is a photo booth within the app and I earned points and a badge for posting a photo from that photo booth on Instagram.  It really is that easy!

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I got some pretty great products in my VoxBox.  I got some Pilot gel pens and I love pens!  I got two pens, one is black ink and the other is a kind of turquoise blue.  They write great and I am super happy about getting to try them out!

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I also received a coupon to try out Country Crock butter for free and Snackers from Land O’Frost.  These were given as coupons since they are refrigerated items.

A packet of Tide PurClean was also included in the box along with a coupon for $3 off.  Now we can all use some good laundry soap right?  The great thing about this Tide is that it is made with 0% dyes and 100% renewable electricity.

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There were also two packets of Plackers for dental flossing.  There was one packet of fruit ones which are great for the kiddos and a package of mint ones for mom and dad.  These things are great to use especially if you are on the go a lot.

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The last item received was three samples of coffee.  There was Chock Full O’Nuts, Hills Bros. and Kauai Coffee.  This is great for my hubby because he drinks coffee while I do not.   There were also some amazing coupons for these coffee products in the box as well.

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If you are interested in signing up for Influenster I am including a link to do so.  It is totally free.  You can also go to the link and just learn more to see if it is something you think you might be interested int.  Just sign up and be sure to link all of your social media accounts because the higher your score the more likely you are to qualify for the Vox Box campaigns that come around.  Also, go through and take all of the surveys available to you.  This is yet another way they determine who will qualify for what box.  You can also search and review products you are already using to increase your likelihood of being chosen and perform other tasks such as referring others to earn points.  I have also included below my YouTube video of my box.

Influenster Sign Up!

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24Sep/16

Having Depression And Anxiety Can Be Pure Hell

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Sometimes I debate on what I will post or write about when it comes to my depression and anxiety issues but tonight I just feel like I need to be real.  I am always open that I have them but don’t always go into a lot of details.  There are a lot of sayings out there about having them both and let me tell most of them are probably true.  Having one is bad enough but having depression and anxiety can be pure Hell and that is the honest truth.
There is so much I have to say about it all and where and when mine started, where and when it was actually diagnosed and so much more but now is what I want to talk about.  I have gone through a lot in my life that has had a definite reason to impact these two mental health issues.  I have gone through a lot in the past few years alone to flare these two issues up for me in major ways.  I have suffered a loss of both of my dads at young ages, had a hysterectomy, had a wreck that left me disabled from my career and in a lot of pain nobody understood, had some serious family issues and parenting issues and a whole lot more.  I mean just what I have been going through these last few months had my most recently counselor reveling at the fact that with these issues I have I had done as well as I have.  Someone like me going through the issues I have while dealing with depression and anxiety is not easy.  Everything is sort of heightened for me.  As a counselor once tried to explain to an unsympathetic man I was dating and lived with anxiety is like when someone without anxiety almost hits an animal with their car and we feel that “phew” moment, but with someone with anxiety they don’t get that “phew”moment.  The anxious feels stays with us.  No matter how irrational the issue causing us the anxiety is we still feel like it is a major ordeal.
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Right now in my life it is just a lot of little things that are overwhelming me that have me feeling both my anxiety and my depression a lot more than I would like.  I sort of thought once our wedding was over that things would just be so much better.  Now don’t get me wrong I am happy to be married and happy to have my family together now, but life just has those same problems and even a few more.  I deal with parenting issues on a daily basis that are sometimes so difficult I feel like I just cannot do it anymore.  The anxiety causes me so much angst and then I get depressed about it all.  I am criticized and judged by others but nobody judges and criticizes me worse than I do myself.  I replay every little thing in my head.  I lie awake thinking about it all, think about it in the shower, think about it while working and pretty much all the time.  I worry about finances of course because that just has not been easy and honestly lately I have a hard time balancing everything to work the extra that I need to that will help us get caught up.  Truth be told it is not just the balance of it all but it is my depression.  It leaves me feeling like it takes every ounce of physical and mental strength just to barely function and do the minimum I have to do.  My depression also affects my body and makes it tired and achy.  My motivation waxes and wanes.  I have so many hopes and dreams for myself and for our family and those in it but sometimes I just can’t make myself go.  I want to spend more time with friends and family but just working and getting by with my household duties is almost too much.  Combine this depression with the fact that my anxiety is tugging at me about the things I need to do as far as working more hours, doing more around the house, working out for my health, working on my life goals, etc. and well it is like I am having a war within myself every single day.
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My family and close friends and even my followers on social media either know or could very easily know that I have these mental health issues but sometimes I hide it well or they may not get the depth of it at any certain time.  I don’t always understand it myself.  I can tell you that I don’t like having it.  I don’t like feeling the way I do.  I don’t like this depressive slump I am in, but it is a part of who I am.  I get by the best I can.  I have good days and bad days.  I gather up my strength and put on a good front when I need to.  I guess in that manner I have learned to sort of manage it.  I do what I need to get by and then I deal with my issues often alone and quietly.  I try to sleep it off, meditate, use oils, etc. and these things all do help at certain points in certain ways, but it does not and will not go completely away.  I write this because it is therapeutic and to promote an awareness for mental health issues.  If you know someone who deals with mental health issues try to be understanding.  It is as real as any other medical condition it is just mostly unseen by the average eye.  Don’t tell someone to “just get over it”.  That does not help and in fact makes it all worse.  If you think I like feeling this way or anyone else does you clearly are clueless and unsympathetic.  Have an open heart and an open mind with your friends of family.  Love them for who they are and respect that they are going through something very real.  Your love and respect may make all of the difference in the world to them.  I know it does me.
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19Sep/16

Do They Think I Am Super Woman?

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Most of us have seen those memes or ecards that talk about the husband going to bed and the wife picking up all the toys and things after he is in bed. Well what about those of us whose children are older but we still suffer that similar scenario? Why are women expected to do so much more? Do they think I am Super Woman?

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Now my hubby started a new job so I will give him that he is getting adjusted to working again after being unemployed after an oilfield layoff but still. He has three days off. I generally have maybe one day off. That is a strong maybe. I work at home and I usually work at least six days a week. No it is not physical labor but I still work and work hard. I am a Medical Transcriptionist so I am responsible for people’s legal medical records for goodness sake! Not to mention I have had a lot going on in my personal life with issues with my son and his schooling and my grandmother being in the hospital and sick. With all of this in mind I love my hubby but like a lot (okay, most) men he just kind of leaves a lot to me. This is my disclaimer that we do not fight and never have in the over three years we have been together but it does not mean we do not disagree on things or have those come to Jesus moments.

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So tonight after I get off work after having worked a full day I sat down to relax a bit and watch television with the hubby. Then, we head to bed and he crawls right in and probably before I much got out of the room to wash my face he was snoring as usual. I run into his son in the hallway who wants to know if it is okay to have a drink since he woke up thirsty. Of course he can as long as it is water. I then journey to the kitchen and figure out that he did cook a quick dinner but all of the mess is still out and all of the dishes are in the sink not rinsed (something I am trying to train everyone to do to help out). I hurriedly clean it all up and load the dishwasher and get it going. I then decide to check my laundry I started and of course it is all still where I left it. I switch out the laundry and start another load. I then decide even though nobody else seems to smell the awful smell in the bathroom I will at least pull up all the rugs to be washed and pour some stuff in the toilet and clean it out (house of all males and male friends of the teenager were here). The dogs also need water so I do that too. Now here I am finally in bed a bit irritated at the day. Now do not get me wrong my hubby did run some jugs to my friend to borrow and run back up there to get my phone so he was not a total loaf today. I appreciate all he does but it is totally underestimated what us housewives do.

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Now here I am wired with a busy day ahead of me tomorrow of gathering school records, working and who knows what else and I have a sudden urge to just clean everything because I am irritated. I know better because it will bite me in the butt if I do but seriously I ask myself daily if anyone else sees the pee on the sides of the toilet that I did not do as I am a female, the only female in my home, and there is no possible way pee would get on the sides of the toilet from me as I do not have to AIM to pee. They all say “it wasn’t me”. Does anyone else see that the trashcan in the bathroom is overflowing as they put that empty toilet paper roll in it. Do they not see it hit the other stuff and bounce off into the floor? Am I the only one who sees that the kitchen trash is overflowing or do they just loose their minds when the have to put something in there and it is overflowing? Do they suddenly go blind? Why is it that the dogs come stare at me and jump on me and my chair when they are hungry, thirsty or need to go outside? Oh that is right they are males too and they know “the mama” is the do all be all and she will do it or have someone else do it. I feel someone has lied to these people and told them that I am Super Woman! Don’t get me wrong I come pretty close but I am not her.

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With all of this said I love the men and boys in my life but if someone could please tell them I am NOT Super Woman that would be just peachy! Now I must retire and wait on my cape to be washed for a new day, a Monday at that!