Monday, November 13, 2017

That time I got what I wanted...

I could remember the days of repetitious routines - The mind numbing constants... The early wake-ups, the around the clock feedings, and the midnight crying for more snuggles.

I could remember being pulled in so many directions that I swore I'd eventually break apart...

I couldn't even stand in one place long enough to have a conversation with my husband, because, something instinctual in my children was determined to cry at that very second.

And at the end of my long days, I'd sit motionless in the darkness for a moment, before it would begin all over again. And I used to dream of a time where I could hear the birds chirping outside, because my home was quiet...

It's a hard concept to comprehend how much changes in just a few short years. How, when you drop both children off at school and come to an empty home, where their toys are left in mid motion... The kindles quietly sit on the kitchen table, Wonder Woman is laying in the hallway, a Junie B Jones book is sitting on the kitchen counter, and the Xbox is still warm from playing Roblox minutes before school started.

My home is too quiet that it is actually uncomfortable...

I tidy up, make the beds, and prep dinner. But my soul is thirsty for the noise, the commotion, and the need.

And I'm still learning how to navigate daily tasks, without being pulled in 100 different directions.

But most of all, through my travels, I leave those scattered motionless toys exactly where my children left them. Because to me, it feels like they're still here. But as soon as I put them back in their spots, the feeling of me being alone will only grow larger.  

So I sometimes find myself wandering through my home, walking in and out of empty rooms, replacing the hollow spaces with memories from the past.

And that time I once dreamed of a quiet home, sticks through me like a knife cutting through butter...

And now, I sit in the quiet, counting down the clock until I see my larger than life personality ridden children again...

Friday, November 10, 2017

This is another side to Veterans Day...

Happy Veterans Day to all the men and women who have put their lives on the line to serve and protect us. I couldn't even begin to imagine the feeling of leaving your family behind, to be on foreign soil and participate in situations that wouldn't be the standard back home.

Veterans Day is very dear to me, because I have two family members who were so courageous enough to be part of America's military...

My poppy was a child of the 20s and a teen of the 30s. He never graduated high school because, he worked in the coal mines to help bring money home for his family. He quickly enlisted in the military on his 18th birthday, as the majority did during that era. They say the men of WWII were from a different mold and I'm sure they were. As my poppy lived in a fox hole, walked the front lines, and stormed Omaha beach in Normandy. As a child, I rarely heard him speak of the War. But when he did, he constantly spoke of the fear he had when he ran across that sand, his boots sinking into the earth, as bullets whizzed by his head. He often questioned why he made it to safety, when so many others did not.

My dad was drafted at 18 years old into Vietnam. He was a child of the 50s and a teen of the 60s. He proudly went to war to serve, as so many of his fellow brothers had done before him. He smiled as he waved goodbye to his loved ones, setting off to an adventure of the unknown. The stories I've heard from my dad, would make the biggest, baddest, man cry. And at almost 70 years old, all these years later, he sometimes is like that 18 year old boy who was drafted... He wears his emotional scars on the outside of his body and hasn't ever been able to shake the memories of those years.

My poppy and dad may have served decades apart, but what they both had in common, were the scars they brought back home with them... Not the visual scars you can see on their bodies, however, I'm sure they have them too. But, scars on their souls. Those smiling boys left the states as naive, trusting people, only to return as someone else.

Sadly, that's the problem with War... You never come back the same. Every man and woman who ever interacted in some form of combat will always be changed forever.

And for my dad, and I'm sure many other Veterans too, this day is a tough day for them. It's a day that brings those suppressed memories back to the forefront of the brain. It's a day that must have emotional anguish of being proud and sad at the same moment...

Something that none of us who haven't served, can ever imagine...

With that, I'll always appreciate every soldier (past and present) for their eternal sacrifice to keep us safe. Every solider will always hold a special place in my heart... And I'll never stop thanking a soldier when I see them out in front of me, or praying for their safe return... And I'll never stop praying for a Veteran soldier to overcome their emotional scars and get the help they need to be the person everyone knows they truly are inside...

So, happy Veterans Day soliders! This honorable day is for you!

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Mid Week Humor: Laugh and Cry. Duct Tape and WD 40...

The art of navigating early motherhood comes down to your ability to laugh and cry... Laugh, when things are funny. And cry, when they're not... It's like the Duct Tape and WD 40 logic of Motherhood.
The Happy Days Blog

Monday, November 6, 2017

That time my children became friends...


Somewhere between the arguing, the "get out of my room," and the "I can't stand you," a bond formed... 

... A bond stronger than any sibling relationship... 

Instead, this is a best friendship.

A friendship where, they don't even know where one half of them starts and the other half ends...

A friendship where, their love for each other is as natural as the sun rising -and is not forced.

It turns out, my daughter wasn't looking for a little brother, she was looking for a best friend to travel this journey with...

... And he couldn't be happier with his role.

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Mid Week Humor: The day after Halloween...

Today is, National Eat Candy for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner Day... Basically, eat the candy until you get so sick of it, that you don't want it again until next Halloween... Or, is this just me and my gluttonous ways?
The Happy Days Blog

Monday, October 30, 2017

The old notion of schooling...

When I was a child, school was this, "rite of passage," that we all attended. Like, it was written in stone that everyone must go through this journey, good or bad. And in the end, we all learned a secret handshake.

They said, school would help us grow, it would help us experience life, and help us understand the world. It was supposed to be a life lesson that everyone was in agreement that children needed to experienced in unison.

What wasn't planned, was the unnecessary branches that grew illogically from the roots...

What I remember from school, was this barbaric notion of evolution and the domineering food chain, but it didn't resemble real-life. 

In school, we were taught that the most popular prevail above all and being in that group, would get you far. So, most kids aspired to fit in that group. They went to great lengths to belong and tore down many peers in the process. However, talent and achievements were irrelevant in that category. And the "smarties" were mocked, bullied, and tormented, and were not considered an important member of society -Even though, those kids turned out to be the Mark Zuckerbergs of the world.

Children are bullied daily, some to the point of the ultimate sacrifice. They are tried and tested... And contrary to popular belief, children don't bounce back from that. They're not resilient, like everyone claims. Children just get torn down to a hollow empty shell and eventually re-shape themselves into someone different.

And the halls we imagined for ourselves, never quite measured up to the ones in Saved by the Bell...

We were taught to sit in single file desks and stare at a black board. We had little breaks throughout the day and movement was limited. We read out of textbooks and never did group work. And fun learning games were only a celebratory thing, never frequent... 

We were bombarded with repetitious acts to train our brains to recite, instead of understand. Because for some reason, memorization was more important than retention.

Standardize testing has never been used upon departure of school. All it teaches, is how to tear down your self-esteem. It removes the fun of learning and the ability to absorb the basic understanding. It is a pressure system that separates the calm and collective from the nervous and anxiety ridden bunch.

It's no wonder that children lose themselves in the process of schooling. They're told when to eat, when to use the bathroom, what to wear, and when to talk. By the end of their schooling, children are left to decide who they want to be for the rest of their lives. After over a decade, of not being allowed to make a decision... And most, lost sight of the person who once had so many aspirations and dreams. 

Because in school, dreaming isn't measurable and to educators, isn't attainable... 

This once, "rite of passage," has belittled the education system since new research has grown. 

We've now learned that we don't have to subject our children to the same bullying and barbaric education system that we were once a part of. Instead, we banded together and demanded more. 

We learned that kindness and acceptance of all, will create a better person. Our children are taught to stand up for others and help a fellow peer, and to always stand up for their own convictions.

We've learned that standing out against the crowd, is sometimes better than fitting in.

We learned that unschooling proves more promising and less structure in schools, actually promotes more positive results and compliance. 

We learned that tests and grades in elementary levels creates abnormal stresses and decreases confidence for future education.

We learned that children should move around more throughout the day and have more breaks and be outside multiple times a day.

We learned that respect should always be offered from not just the students, but the teachers and staff too. Because, how can a child learn to respect, if they're not being respected.

We have learned that children are more than just robots that can be controlled. Instead, they're these little humans ready to soak up any knowledge worth knowing, when it's being presented correctly. 

Schools have come a long way from my days of walking the halls... Thanks to the ones who demanded more for their children. The parents and educators who sought out the change and implemented the movement to help mold better humans.

But most importantly, we've also learned that school is no longer a rite of passage, but instead, only an option. If your school doesn't fit with your morals and values, then you don't have to subject your children to it. And until all schools reach these new standards, homeschooling is the safer option for your children.

Being at home is a scary concept for many, because it's different. But different isn't always bad. And in this case, you want to be different from the norm.

The most important part is, you're home with your child. You're experiencing life together. And, any problems that arise, can be faced with the love and security from family support. 

Your child isn't left alone, wandering their brain to find solutions for things they don't even know. They're not forced to compare their qualities with peers for acceptance. And they're not torn down and made to be reshaped into an unrecognizable person.

Schooling has come a long way over the years, but it still needs to move leaps and bounds more. And the only way we'll get there, is by parents becoming more educated on unschooling and demanding that their children be treated with the same respect, as you would treat another person. 

If we really want schooling to teach our children what real life is, then we need to start creating a school system that is life like -filled with choices and respect.

So, when our children graduate, they'll be kinder humans ready to soften this world. And, they won't have to spend their college years trying to figure out who they are, they'll already know...

Because our children deserve better than this...

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Mid Week Humor: Listening skills...

Me: Please, no running.
Kids: *running.
Me: Ok, thanks.

-At least I know that my powers of invisibility are still going strong...
The Happy Days Blog