My Writings

~September Submission~
   Hello Family! Happy September!! By now, your babies have gone back to school and boy is it a transition. Gearing up for a new year with all the uniform shopping and then the supplies list was a strain and pain, but in the end so worth it.
            My munchkin starts Pre-K at the daycare the day after Labor Day. He will wear a uniform and then the homework will start. I didn’t know that I would have to buy supplies for Pre-K at the daycare. I was dumbfounded. I already pay $140/week at the daycare and then I had to come up with uniforms and supplies. In the end, I am grateful that I have a place to send my child and it is a learning environment. I have already noticed in the 3 weeks that he has been back at daycare that he has grown up some more! 
My little man wrote his name for the first time for me last weekend and I cried!

This was his first try!

Practice makes perfect!
I am so proud of my doodlebug and yet it is bittersweet. I thought I wanted him to be more independent and grow up, but man it is a hard pill to swallow when they make milestones like this!
In other news, I made a back to school wreath for his teacher. I was quite pleased with how it turned out.

I have found that crafting has been a good outlet and Justice enjoyed helping me paint the blackboard and the letters. It was a fun project for both of us.  I went to the community college and found out that I am just two classes shy of my associate’s degree. How cool is that?!?!??!! I will be taking the last two classes online and thank goodness they are just electives. So it looks like Justice will do Pre-K, Ashley (my baby sister) is taking her last two classes as a senior at college this semester and I will be taking my last two classes and be done with my associates degree! God is good, family! He works wonders!
            I got offered a part time job being a patient advocate for the company that did my Lap-Band surgery. I am excited. This is the opportunity for me to give back to my banded community and to learn and grow in the process. I am always looking for a way to give back and this will also help me along the way. What better way to learn about yourself than to share with others?!?!  I am feeling very blessed, loved and highly favored nowadays and I am honored to be able to give back and help others out.  I hope that I am able to teach this to my child so that he will have the same giving nature.
            Here is a picture of his haircut he got for the start of school.  My little man is almost 4 and looking 5-6! So handsome!
While we both are learning and growing, we are both so blessed to have the family and friends we do and to be supported by the Inner Child Family. Through the love and support I receive, I have become more self confident and thus know that I am able to do so much more than I have because I was only holding myself back .  Great things are coming in the months ahead and I am so honored to be able to share our ups and down and all arounds with each and every one of you!
Until next month, sending you blessings, love and light from Justice’s mom to you and your family.
~August Submission~
  Happy August Family! I can’t believe the summer is almost over. I took Justice out of daycare for the summer and he was able to go and have fun with his great aunt Donna. He got to go to the zoo, the park, ride his bike, go to the museum, he took swim lessons for a month, he went to Old McDonald’s Farm in Humble and he went to Chuck E Cheese! His summer was packed with lessons and fun. This was all in preparation while I was gearing up to figure out what school I could get Justice in to for the fall semester.

Justice is only 3 ½, so while he looks like he is 5, he still can’t get into public school. It turns out that I waited a little too long to get him on the list for this year at the private Catholic school and the Episcopal school around the corner. I have him on the waiting list at 3 elementary schools, so I am hoping that next year when he is 4 ½, he will be able to get into a pre-k program to stay on track with the other kids. It sucks that they won’t let him in to Kindergarten until he is 5 years old. By the time he gets to Kindergarten, he will be 5 ½.  It makes this momma weary.

I found a daycare that is right around the corner from work. I had been leery to put Justice in yet another daycare. With the private schools not an option, it was now on to either where he was going before or the daycare around the corner from my work. It turns out that the daycare he started on July 30th is also has a Pre-K program. Since he will be 4 in December, they have decided to bump him from the 3 year old class to the 4 year old class. I may be partial, but my baby is smart! They will wear uniforms when school starts for the public schools so that they get used to the idea of it for the next year. They will have homework once a week and also have a progress report with behavior stickers.  I am a happy mommy once again. This is just the structure that my baby needs.

With Justice gearing up to have a rewards and consequences plan in place, I have decided that I too will have one for myself. I do, after all, need to lead by example. Since having the lap-band procedure done, I have been slacking off on going to the gym. I figure it is about time that I treat my working out as a behavior and thus I will get rewards for going and doing what I need to do. I will get consequences for not going and making up excuses. I can’t wait to make the charts and then take pictures. I will have pictures posted as soon as they are done!

So, what will you be doing in the month of August? With school vastly approaching, I am sure that there are last minute vacations to be had. I know that Texas has a big Tax Free Weekend Sale coming up and that is always a blast. Packed, but when you get to spending a large amount of money on supplies, clothes, shoes and other things that are needed for the upcoming school year, it turns out to be worth it. I am looking forward to getting out there and finding Justice some uniform shorts, pants and shirts. It will be nice to not have to try and get him to agree to something to wear to daycare each day. Some times my boy can be such a diva when it comes to choosing his attire. Year 3 has been his year to flex his opinions and make decisions. I can’t wait to see what year 4 has in store for me.

I hope everyone has a blessed August! Peace, love and light from Justice’s mommy.   ________________________________________________________________________________
~July Submission~

           Happy July to all of you! I am so glad to share this month with you all. As a recap, last month I was gearing up for the Lap Band surgery and an impending child support court date. My child support court date was the 21st and then my surgery was on the 23rd. It was an exhausting week mentally, emotionally, and physically. I honestly can say that I was more anxious about the child support court happenings than the surgery. I know I said I would talk about the Lap Band surgery, but I’ll give better updates next month and even pictures!
            Child support court isn’t for the weak. I sat there on the opposite side of the room from my baby daddy. He sat over there talking to other dead beat men. They were laughing and talking about the situation they were in. How the court system is geared for the baby momma only and how they are all just getting screwed. Remember I said I was sitting on the other side of the room? Well, they weren’t quiet by any means. I got there at 7:30am and we didn’t get called until 12:30pm. By that time, I was exhausted mentally, hungry, and I could tell my sugar was dropping. I had been on the pre-op diet for 3 weeks and it was way past time for a protein shake. I wasn’t anxious about the actual court proceedings, but more so about having to actually deal with baby daddy.
            True to form, he tried to manipulate me in to agreeing to just get this over with before we actually got back in to the mediation room. When Justice was 3 months old, baby daddy bullied me in to mediation instead of going to child support court. He told me that if I didn’t go to mediation and come out with a solution that he would be nothing to Justice but a paycheck and Justice wouldn’t get to see his brothers. At that time, I really only wanted Justice to be able to know that other side of family. I wanted Justice to know his other grandmother, cousins and most of all his brothers. So, I agreed to agree to whatever we came up with so we could get out of there. We came up with him paying way less than he should and I still would have to keep insurance on Justice since baby daddy didn’t have a job and was on unemployment. He was happy on unemployment. He was getting $1400 a month in unemployment because he was laid off from his job he lost just a month before our mediation. I would sit on my fat butt too! Okay, no I wouldn’t because that isn’t in my nature, but still.
            When we got call in to the mediation room, we sat on opposite sides of the table with the woman mediator in the middle going over the numbers. The logistics of it all were crazy. What was crazier was that this man thought he was going to pay the interest of $34 and then only add $4 and I was going to agree to it. The reason we had to be in court was because baby daddy didn’t pay the child support because, and I quote, “I don’t want people telling me how to spend my money. I don’t want people in my pocket. Justice isn’t the one asking for money.” Crazy, right?!?! Yes, I sure picked a winner here folks. He then wanted to bring up the fact that Justice doesn’t have insurance through my job anymore and that he shouldn’t have to pay $150 a month in insurance support if I am not paying that to an insurance company. He wanted so badly for that woman to agree with him. Funny part is that we weren’t there for that. We were there to settle on an extra amount a month that he would be paying to get this back child support paid while maintaining a current status on the child support he is supposed to pay monthly. I can’t believe it, but I let his ignorance and rudeness upset me. We couldn’t agree so the mediator told us that we would take a brief break and she would go talk to the lawyer for the attorney general’s office. I got up and went outside to the hallway. I broke down. This man is rude and thinks he is going to get things his way. This time it wasn’t up to me. However, the part that made me cry was when the lady looked at me and asked me, “So, what do you want to do with him. Do you want him to go to jail for nonpayment or do you want him to be on probation with stipulations?” Why was this MY decision? How could you put this pressure on me? As if I don’t already have problems communicating with baby daddy, let’s just make him hate me more because either way my decision is wrong. Either way I am going to be the bad guy because this is my fault. Or at least that is what he pounded in to my head years ago. My answer, “while I should choose the jail sentence so that at least he would be neglecting all his boys instead of just ours, jail isn’t the right choice here.” Yes, it was beneath me to start with a jab, but at that point he had already made me cry once.
            The attorney came to the table with a firm attitude. He was not going to take baby daddy’s smart mouth and arguing. This was going to happen one of two ways, either he agreed to what the attorney was offering or he would go before the judge with a higher amount and the judge would make the decision. Baby daddy was, of course, being a butthead and so the attorney told him with all certainty that the judge would order accordingly. I was again asked if I wanted him to go to jail. I again said that jail was not the solution to this problem. In the long run, probation was the best answer. It would force baby daddy to be accountable for his own actions but under a watchful eye. The judge told him that I kept him out of jail this time by my own decision, but that if he missed one probation appointment, missed one payment or didn’t abide by the terms of the judgment, that he would be in jail for 6 months and then the judgment would be in force again, but with higher terms. Small victory yet I felt defeated.
            This by far was a victory for Justice and what was right. This was going to make baby daddy accountable. This was going to make him feel what it is like to struggle to make ends meet or work that much harder to get the money flow to support his household and child support. I don’t know why I felt sorry for him when he could care less if I have money to pay for daycare, shoes and clothes for Justice or even enough money to put food on the table. He doesn’t take in to account that child support helps to pay for everything. The roof over our son’s head, the lights, the air conditioning, the daycare, the clothes, the shoes, the food and the toys all for our son. Baby daddy made me feel like I was wrong for seeking child support. Our child was a miracle not a mistake. My child is the light of my life and it is baby daddy’s loss for thinking he is punishing me by not coming to get Justice on his appointed weekends. I guess I forgot to mention that I told baby daddy on more than one occasion that he was more than welcome to come get Justice any time he wanted, but not as substitutions for his allotted weekends. Because I was “telling” him what to do, he wasn’t going to do it.
            Based on the entire situation I just explained, I realized that I gave baby daddy power over me a long time ago. No one can make you feel inferior without your consent. I gave that consent when I decided that I would do whatever it took to get him and those people to be a part of my son’s life. That was the entire first year of Justice’s life. Now I live in the real world. Baby daddy does not control my household or my will anymore. Baby daddy said that he can’t come get Justice because he has to work longer and harder to make ends meet. I am failing to find my compassion and empathy for this man. I think I have finally broken his spell of control over me. Praise the Lord! Being a single mom is hard enough without the manipulation and words that demean and belittle all that I am and mean to him and our son. In the end, I am stronger than I was before that child support court date. I was able to go into gearing up for the surgery on Wednesday of that week with a little less pressure on my shoulders.
            The lesson I’ve learned this month is that I have the power to control my situation. I am stronger than I have ever given myself credit. Most of all, I have learned that I am a great mother and I am doing what is best for my son and myself. In the end, Justice will remember all that I have done for him and with him. He will remember and his father will have to answer the questions later in life as to why he wasn’t there and why he didn’t come get him. I still hurt deep inside because I was that kid a long time ago. I used to sit in on the couch looking out my grandmother’s window watching for my dad to come pick me up. Often I was disappointed. Often I cried. I didn’t tell my dad how I felt because of fear of rejection. He didn’t know how I felt in the situation because I was afraid that if I told him that he wouldn’t come get me next time. It was a crap shoot regardless. Every little girl yearns for her daddy’s love and approval. I am still that little girl inside. The exception is that my daddy tells me he loves me now and I talk to my dad at least once a week now. My dad is trying to be a part of my life and my son’s life. We have truly come full circle. I love my daddy. Loving him doesn’t take away from the love and hurt I have from losing my mom and sister. It was their losses that brought my dad and me closer.  Gosh it is hard to be a grown up sometimes much less a single mommy!
            Until next month, blessings, peace, love and light to you all from Justice’s mommy. 

~June Submission~
Hello again! Since I last wrote, I have had several “ah-ha” moments and revelations. I finally talked myself through the emotions of facing “that” picture. I finally have taken it as nothing more than a way for Justice to remember his father, stepmother and brothers. It really is a good picture of the boys. It took me to realize that this woman could have put up a fight about having Justice in the family picture and I needed to step out of my own feelings for a moment. This picture is sort of an admittance that BD stepped out of their marriage and made a child with someone else. What is done in the dark always comes to the light. Mind you, they were legally separated and living in separate houses when I got pregnant. Nonetheless, he ran right back to her to mend that situation once I told him I was pregnant. So, while I am hurt that he doesn’t treat my child like the other two, she has her own feelings towards the situation. I had to grow up a little and stop being selfish in my own feelings for just a bit. That’s all.
I am gearing up to have the Lap Band procedure done in a couple of weeks. I think Justice knows something is up. He has been really clingy and sleeping in my bed with me. I have noticed his need to have me within arms reach lately. He seems to not want to leave my side. I definitely have a mommy’s boy on my hands. I love him to the moon and back! So, what’s a mom to do? I have been making time for just me and Justice. I have been turning off the television and making sure that he gets my full attention so that he isn’t seeking it so hard. I have gotten too good at zoning out. Occupational hazard!
Reconnecting with one of my high school friends has been great. She has two daughters and they all adore Justice. Justice adores her daughters and cries when we have to leave to go home. I think he just has separation anxiety with everyone. I am finding that I have to be a little sterner with Justice. This makes my heart weary. I don’t want my child to fear me, but I want him to listen to the words that are coming out of my mouth and show some obedience. I know my child loves and that is all great, but I need him to follow instructions. Funny thing is that I know that I know that I know that Justice hears what I am saying and he just chooses to do what I am saying. Maybe I am requesting and not ordering.  How do we ride that fine line between being stern and being mean?  How do we get the message across without bribery and/or threatening?
I often wonder if I am failing as a mother since I have a child that is “out of control”. Wait, did I just … yes I did! Justice isn’t a rowdy kid. He is 3 and he is a boy child. So, already I have two strikes against me.  How do I tame this rambunctiousness? How do I get him to listen to me without me giving in to his whines and cries? I don’t want to be the punisher, yet I am the only one that is parenting my child. How do I not continue to be a push over and get the respect and honor from my child that I deserve? I don’t have the answers. When I don’t have the answers, I turn to God and pray. I am doing the 21 Days of Prayers for Boys lead by The Mob Society. It seems that when I get to this point of weary and despair, I just needed to hit my knees and pray. I just needed to get Justice to pray. We get so comfortable doing our own thing that when it is time for really praying together, I think I often forget how to and wonder if I am doing it right.
I look forward to sharing next month about the lap band procedure and how Justice and I are adjusting to this new way of living.
Until next month, I’m sending each and every one of you blessings, love and light from Justice’s mom! 

~May Submission~
Hello again friends! Life as a single mommy keeps me on my toes and even the best laid plans seem to some how not get accomplished. While I have been struggling to make sure that the bedbug situation was taken care of, it wasn’t until two days ago that I got Justice’s room somewhat together. So again, I am here to say that pictures won’t happen this month. I have had to take the bull by the horns and rid my apartment of creepy crawlers myself. If they aren’t paying rent, they don’t belong in my apartment!! Ok, Justice is the fruit of my womb, so I’ve got him covered.
This month’s struggle was one of my own. While I am sure I don’t share half as much as I should about my deadbeat baby daddy, I am sure by my loose lips you are able to tell that he is less than helpful and often seems to work my last good nerve. I have grown, in the last 2 years, to know not to be upset by what he does or doesn’t do. However, this latest thing really hurt my core.
Here goes the story. We will just call him BD so I don’t have to write out baby daddy over and over again. BD texted me asking if I could bring Justice to the barbershop on Saturday morning. Any other time I would say no, but Justice did need a haircut and I hadn’t been able to take him yet. Then he calls me at 645am on Saturday morning telling me that Justice needed to have something nice to wear and it needed to be blue as they were going to take pictures on Sunday. I sent clothes, but the meanie in me wants to tell him to go buy stuff if he wants something special, especially since he isn’t paying child support right now.  I dropped Justice off and BD of course had to flirt and be obnoxious as ever. Sunday when he dropped off Justice, he made sure to let me know that the pictures that they took were in the bag. He also made sure I knew that he went and got Justice a shirt to match all of their shirts. Oh, so that $3 you spent on our son was supposed to make swoon? Heck no! Do better mister man, or should I say little boy.
Part of me knew that the stepmother would be in the pictures, but I thought for sure that they wouldn’t send those pictures to my house. She is NOT my child’s mother. THAT picture of the happy family is a lie. That perfect picture of father of the year is a BOLD face lie and hypocritical. I am mommy and daddy 24/7. Perhaps I am just too sensitive. Perhaps I have just been slighted too many times by BD, but the fact that they sent a family picture to MY house really chapped my hide. I wanted to put my fist through the phone and slap the, well I don’t have to finish that. My guy friend told me that it sounded like I still had feelings for BD. I wouldn’t let BD touch me with a 50ft pole. He makes my skin crawl and if I knew then what I know now, he would have NEVER touched me. I have lost all respect for BD.  Not because he doesn’t pay child support. I make due with what I bring in and make sure that my son doesn’t want for anything. The fact that he can’t even come get our son on his delegated weekends baffles my mind. If you aren’t going to support our son monetarily, at the very least come and get him so that he can spend time with you and his brothers. I have lost all respect for his wife as well. If the shoe were on the other foot, I would make sure that my husband had a relationship with his son. I would make sure that I didn’t treat him any different. After all, what is done is done and while he wasn’t born to me, he is still my husband’s son and the brother to my own sons.  I guess that make me either the better person or the more naive.
I digress. Why does this picture irk me so badly and make me want to shank BD?!? It isn’t insecurity, because I know she will NEVER be mom to him and he will never love her like he does me. I feel like this perfect picture they painted should have footnotes and have a cliff notes book attached so that those people that see this picture know that this is just for show. So that they can know all that BD doesn’t do for our son. To know the struggle of the mother of that youngest child in that photo and that the BD in that photo makes sure that he has the upper hand in every situation so that the situation is in his favor.
I honestly can say that I got mad, so mad that I cried. This was beyond my control. This was something that I had anticipated and knew would happen eventually, but I thought for sure they wouldn’t be flaunting it to me. Send me the pictures of all the boys and the pictures of the boys with their dad, but don’t send me the picture with a greeting on it and labeled with the family name. Did I mention that BD still hasn’t changed Justice’s last name to their last name?? He is too cheap to even do that. I gave him 5 chances before I was discharged from the hospital to step up and come sign the paperwork and let Justice have his last name. He didn’t want it until he had the paternity test. I didn’t need a paternity test to know who the father of my child is.
            I believe I just needed to vent because now that I have expressed my feelings, I am so okay with the picture. I am sitting here looking at it and although I still find it down right deceitful it really is a pretty picture. Justice will appreciate it later in life when he gets to see at least 1 picture of him with his father when he was little. Thanks for letting me share my feelings and emotions. Single mommyhood certainly isn’t what anyone could ever say it is. Doing this alone truly is a trying, tiring, and heart fulfilling experience. My son makes my world go around and I wouldn’t change a thing.
Until next month, I am sending love and blessings to you and yours from Justice’s mommy.

~April Submission~
Single Mommyhood

I know I said last month I was going to share some helpful hints and tips that have helped Justice to become more independent, but I have almost lost my mind!
So, on top of being a single mommy, apparently I have made a wonderful home to a lot of bedbugs. Lucky me! Well, I sprayed, bombed and bought the bedbug covers for all the pillows and beds and STILL they came back. Did I mention that we moved apartments in October/November?!?! Apparently, my son and I are great meals and they just love us and don’t want to leave.
So, besides almost losing my mind and using sarcasm to keep from crying, what is a mommy to do? It is one thing to mess with me, but it is another thing to mess with my child! At my whit’s end, I finally decided to get rid of the beds and frames in Justice’s room.  I am OCD with cleaning. So how in the world did I get bedbugs?!?! Why am I being plagued with loss and NOW bedbugs??!! Well, I had to step out of my own story and decide NOT to have the victim mentality anymore. No more will I say “what next God?” because when you ask, you WILL receive. Whether you want it or not, you will get something. For better or for worse it will come. So the other part of me is looking for a “logical” or “tangible” reason why we got bedbugs. Apparently, one of the neighbors had them and instead of treating the entire complex, they just treated the one apartment and those little boogers hippity hopped over to our apartment and infested the wood bunk bed set that I just got for Justice so his brothers could come and stay the night and have plenty of room.
My dad came over two days ago and took apart the bunk beds and threw them out along with the two twin mattresses. I called my dad last night and asked him to come and take apart Justice’s loft bed and throw it out too. It is wood and metal. I got it from Ikea for $199, so it wasn’t terribly expensive. The mattresses for that loft bed were about $100 a piece so I feel like I am throwing away $400 when all is said and done with that bed. I also figure that Justice has had that bed for 2 years, so $200 per year isn’t so bad right? I’ve been talking myself in to losing that bed for two days now. I got it so that Justice would feel like a big boy in a bed he could climb up in to and then have the loft part under to lay and read books or watch television. It was his first real bed. Oh my, now I am getting sentimental about it. I am not a hoarder, but part of me wants to keep it because it was his FIRST real bed. How funny is that?!?! My first baby and I would keep his first poop if there wasn’t something utterly wrong with that! I digress. I am so thankful to God for blessing me with a daddy that helps me with the stuff like taking apart the beds and dealing with bugs. I am so thankful for being able to replace Justice’s bed soon. I often forget the many little blessings I have in my life each and every day, but I do stop and give thanks and praise.
When I have his room back together I will take pictures of all the things that help my doodlebug to be more independent and help momma help him.  I think I will take this extra time to paint his room and then really get it decorated the way it was before the move so he can have his learning and play room back!
Peace, love, light and blessings to you and yours from Justice’s mommy!


~March Submission~

Single Parenting with Amber ~ Single Mommyhood

So this thing we call parenting, it isn’t easy, but is so rewarding! Regardless of the parenting situation, we all parent differently. When I was gearing up to be a new mom, I got unsolicited advice all the time. I knew I wanted to parent different than I was parented. I knew I wanted more and better for my child. Even at only 3 years old, I see the potential in my child to do great things.

Now let me get to the real side of single mommyhood. This is the stuff you don’t see on the shows on TLC!

From the moment I found out I was pregnant, I knew I was going to be a single mom. Did I plan this? No. Did I ever want this for myself? No. I knew with every bit of my being that I was meant to be a mom and there were NO options for me once I knew I was pregnant.  I was 30 years old. I was in night school gearing up to finish my Associates degree from the community college. I have a good job and had been at my job since I was 19 turning 20, so it wasn’t like they didn’t know that I would eventually have a child.
I have come to learn a few things since delving in to this single mommyhood head first. I think most of all, that when you see a single mom you should say a prayer for her. It doesn’t have to be some elaborate pity prayer either. I think the same goes for single dads or siblings that end up having to play the mommy and/or daddy role. Every little bit of prayer helps even we don’t know that someone has prayed for us. You just never know what someone else’s situation is until you take the time to find out.  

I have found out a lot about myself in just the last couple of years. For instance, I would go shopping with my best friend and we would leisurely be strolling up and down each aisle. There was ALWAYS at least one child that was screaming and throwing a fit. My bestie would say, “If you train them at home, you wouldn’t have to try and train them in public.” I thought the same thing at the time. How dare that lady bring that bad child to the store and let that child make a scene. I am shaking my head now at my ignorance.
No matter how well your child is “trained” at home, they will always find some way to say something, act out or just plain disobey in public. Children aren’t dogs or puppets. They can’t be made to act a certain way without a lot of bribing, beating or a muzzle. I kid at the beating and muzzle part. There isn’t one trip to the store that I didn’t have to give in to Justice at least once to make the trip more bearable for everyone. It is only when the stars and moon align just so, the time of the day is right, he has had a nap already, he is well fed, and I made sure that I took him to the potty first that we can get through a shopping trip without incident. Even then, I end up buying some ridiculous toy that I had no intention on buying just so I can avoid that meltdown of embarrassment of a child being told no. Silly me for thinking that it is the parent’s fault for the meltdown of the child. Honestly, I get now why you should keep your opinions and judgments to yourself. I wonder often if because I was being so judgmental that I am in the position now to try and keep my child under control while out and about.

As a single mom, I find it very hard to implement the word no. I think I have a certain amount of guilt that my son doesn’t have that father figure in his life as much as he needs. My son doesn’t have my sister or my mom to be there for him either. I try to be “enough” for Justice.  I don’t know what “enough” is now. I am betting there are more moms out there feeling the very same way I do right now and they wonder about it just as I do. I stay exhausted and spent mentally, physically and emotionally. There are times that I just want to disappear for an hour or three. I love my child with my entire being. He is my reason for living. Just like anything else, parenting takes practice and work.

I wonder if there are other parents that have similar thoughts. I can’t imagine I am the only one that wants to be arrested and taken to jail just to have a day or two away from my situation and child. Justice and I just had this conversation a couple of weeks ago. I had changed him from the car seat to a booster seat since he is so tall. He was doing really well and then he started taking off his seatbelt while I was driving. I would have to pull over and make him put it back on. I would go through this entire explanation of how it wasn’t safe to ride without a seat belt and how the police would take momma to jail if he didn’t wear his seatbelt while I was driving.  I finally just screamed out loud, “please Mr. Policeman come take me and put me in jail!” I didn’t really mean it, but I was to the point of frustration and defeat that I wanted to escape. I find that my patience is wearing now that my son is 3 and he is testing me every chance he gets.

Another thing I can’t seem to fathom is the fact that I can’t even go to the bathroom without my kid right there in the door talking to me or wanting to sit down on the floor mat so he can be around me all the time. I’ve had friends tell me to close the door and take a bath. I get in the bath and my kid opens the door, takes off his clothes and decides that it is a great time to slip and slide down momma since she has a bath full of warm water and bubbles. Think about that for one moment. I am in the tub with my aromatherapy bath oil bubbles and have the neck pillow resting perfectly. I look open my eyes to my naked son getting in my tub only to put his butt on my chest and slide down me in to the water like I am the best water park ride ever! I wouldn’t trade any of it for one second. Am I insane? Nope, I just love myself and my son enough to take the hits and keep on ticking.

My mission in this is to find ways to work through the trials and tribulations of being a single mom. I am always looking for resources, helpful hints, and little tricks that are passed on from other mothers. I have found that stay at home moms are really helpful to the single mom. They are like single moms when they are with the little ones all day. Their husbands are off at work and they are left at home to do it all alone. I give applause to those mothers that have the patience, endurance and understanding to be able to stay at home. I think I would have to stick a fork in my eye or slit my wrists if I had to stay at home with my son all day long every day. Again, I say wholeheartedly, I love my son. His smile lights up my life and his laugh fills my cold heart with all the love and joy to sustain me.

Next month, I will share some of the short cuts and tips that I have learned to help my son be more independent and learn while gaining self confidence.  I hope my candid expressive tendencies will not offend anyone. For me, if I am not honest and freely writing my thoughts and feelings, then I am not being honest to who I am and the emotions, struggles, challenges, adventures and blessings that all surround this single mommy world of mine. 

I have started writing for Inner Child Magazine.  I am in the family section. It is just me writing monthly about being a single parent to my wonderful Justice. Trials and Tribulations set aside, I feel so honored to have been asked to contribute as well as being blessed with the words that just flow from my head to my keyboard. Special thanks to Janet and Bill for believing in me and thus helping me to believe in myself!                                              


 Full Figured Opposition
  In today's society women are expected to be thin, lengthy, and beautiful.  I have come to deal with the fact that I don't fit into all those ideals.  Not everyone is meant to be skinny.  I have been full figured, "thick" as I like to call it, all my life.  I grew up around friends who were skinnier, cousins who were skinnier, and a mother who didn't know why I wasn't skinny.  I didn't eat constantly or late at night.  I didn't eat oversized portions, yet from the fifth grade on I have been obese.  I can remember back to my sixth grade year in middle school.  I was the biggest person in the class.  I don't mean the twenty-eight or so kids.  I was the biggest of the entire sixth grade.  I got teased regularly.  There was one incident in particular that I can remember as if I was back there again.  Greg, the most popular boy in the class, made fun of me.  It was the time when Houston still had a blimp.  We were in math class and Mrs. Greenwood left the room for a minute.  Greg pointed outside and said, "Amber, what are you doing in here? I thought that was you outside flying in the sky!" I was crushed.  I fought back tears, shrugged it off, and waited until I got home to cry.  Greg and his entourage made regular work of belittling me.  I was call everything from hippo, Ms. Piggy, elephant, and cow to blimp.  My friend, Yvonne, told me that if I didn't love myself, then I couldn't or shouldn't expect for others to be able to love me. 
  I struggled throughout my adolescence with my weight.  I tried dieting, exercising, walking, and jogging.  My most extreme effort was when I got desperate and turned to bulimia.  I felt lonely, ugly, and overall really just felt as fat as a pig.  The cute boys didn't ask me out.  I didn't get invited to the parties.  I was okay with being obese as long as I wasn't secluded with it.  I struggled with clothing as well in middle school.  Clothing that was made for full figured women, was just that, made for women.  The clothes looked dated and were awkward for me to try and make work for middle school.  I went through phases of trying to find a happy medium where I was comfortable and I wouldn't be persecuted for my clothing.  Middle school was all a show.  What kind of name brand shoes and clothes you wore were indicative of your worth.  There was one time in March, just after Spring Break, everyone else was wearing shorts and I was in a thick long blue jean jacket.  It was my security blanket of sorts.  I thought that if I wore the big jacket no one would be able to see my butt and my gut.  Yvonne played a special role in helping me to grow and let go of that security blanket.
  I approached my first day of high school with much fear that I would once again be the biggest in the class.  Greg and most of his entourage was there, as was most of the eighth grade calss from middle school.  To my surprise, I was not the biggest anymore.  I was no long teased or tormented.  I still dealt with issue with boys. For various reasons that I can only guess or suppose about I didn't talk to or date any white or latino boys.  I ended up in the arms of a black boy who treated me like a queen instead of queen size.  Jamaal was my first boyfriend and he treated me with respect, love, and adoration.  He took me out and was proud to have me by his side.  He was the most wonderful thing to ever happen to me.  He made me feel loved and told me that I am beautiful no matter what size I may be.  All good things have to end at one time or another, but it was great while it lasted.  I had more crushes and boyfriends throughout the remainder of high school.  I am greatful and will always remember Yvonne because she was my crutch and best friend.  She gave me the words of wisdom that helped me to be able to move on and have that first boyfriend.
  I graduated with highest honors from high school.  I also graduated, personally, as a young woman who grew from being meek, timid, overweight, and self-concious into being strong willed and able to stand up for myself.  I came to learn that a person's worth isn't determined by monitary things.  Just because I am overweight doesn't mean I don't deserve the best in the world as everyone else strives to get.  No matter how my weight flucuates, I am still the same person inside.  These are all lessons learned, and I would scream it to the world if given the chance. 
  Eight years later, here I am telling of the trails of my adolescence.  I am still obese, but I have come to terms with it.  I can say that I am obese and not cry.  I know that I still need to make some changes in my life so that I can be healthy.  I also know that I should be loved whether I am skinny or fat.  I describe myself now as a young beautiful full figured woman with a wonderful personality and all the love in my heart to give.  I know I will never be "model size," but I hope someday to be a little smaller.
  Maybe someday the norm will change and there won't be pressure to be a size 10.  For now I just hold on to my belief that a person's true worth is more than just skin deep.  When I see other full figured girls I say, "Big Girl Power!!"  They laugh and I hope that they have some ease knowing that we are all in this together.  I look forward to what tomorrow brings and live day by day.   Each day is a treasure.


So, I haven't updated in a while. Suppose I didn't really have much to say. I have had so much going on that I haven't had the luxury of posting .. but today I certainly need to.
I find myself wondering why it is that it has got to be a roller coater ride. Why men can't just be .. what is the word I am looking for ... stable or consistant in their actions and words. I am so tired of the bullshit that I find myself wanting to just scream or cry. If I shed one tear its my own damn fault because it was my decision to deal with it again. My decision to chose a man. As if I wasn't hurt enough before, now I have opened pandoras box (my heart) to endless doubt. Its as if I need constant reassurance that what I hear and see and feel are real. It can only be expected really. Its his fault that things are the way they are now. Yet, I am the one that is feeling shitty. I am two steps from spiteful. The part that really pisses me off is that I don't have the time or the energy to even need to be feeling this way right now. With work, school and the gym .. I really don't have time to be wondering about where a man is or what he is doing.
Sad part is... I pray for him more than I do for myself. I made him my everything once before and when he disappeared... I was left with nothing. I lost myself in wrapping my heart around the idea of our relationship. When he disappeared it was like a balloon that had been popped. I was left empty and torn in so many pieces.
I saw in a movie once where a dude said "every woman has the love life she wants for herself" .. I wonder if that is really true.  I don't believe that I sit and tell myself that I want to be lonely and feel some desire for someone who isn't giving me all that I need. Or that I want to be so wrapped in one man that I turn others that could be something away. Then I wonder if I made the right choice.  Again, its the endless doubt. I used to trust this man, now I can't say that anymore. I can't say that I feel truly wanted, needed and desired. I can't say that I know that I am loved by him on a daily basis. I can't say that I am his and he is mine. Well I can say it all day and night.. but that doesn't make it true. I sit back and wonder how people find that special someone. How there are people my age and even younger that are in a relationship and its good. Here I am .. got offers .. but not completely what I want, need and desire or deserve.
I think its become a standard of what I believe I deserve. I can get dick .. no doubt on that .. I just believe I deserve more than just a piece every now and then. I am only cheating myself by giving up my goodies to a man that doesn't want or need more from me. Better yet .. to a man that can't or won't give me more than just a piece every now and then.
Ok, so thats my gripe for the day.