Some days are great, others are not...but no matter what twists and turns I encounter, you can be sure I'm going to write about it!

Friday, September 25, 2009

Keep The Faith

A while back, I posted a letter (that I'm too lazy to link to) about a walk I'm participating in. The walk is for the National Alliance for Mental Illness (NAMI). The walk is tomorrow.
As of yesterday morning, I had raised zero funds...which is all fine and dandy. You aren't REQUIRED to raise funds, but my gut (and heart) felt very disappointed in myself. If I could afford to contribute monetarily, I probably wouldn't be doing the walk (who am I kidding, of COURSE I'd be doing the walk, I digress).
I turned to people who I rarely turn to for support...My family.
I put together a short email pleading for help, but telling them I understood that money is tight so as not to make them feel obligated. I hoped to get a response, but my faith was running on empty.

A little about the cause...
I grew up in Roseville, MN. It is nestled between Saint Paul and Minneapolis (AKA The Twin Cities)..Roseville is the closest thing to a metropolis without being a metropolis. It has a small town feel while maintaining a large population, great shopping, entertainment and restaurants. In a nutshell, Roseville is awesome.
Aaron lived less than a half mile from my home. We were never great friends, but we definitely knew each other. He was the boy every single girl had a crush on, with his blonde hair, blue eyes, and boyish (amazing) good looks. He was a prankster, and very intelligent. He was Aaron.
Last spring, Aaron lost his battle with Schizophrenia, a battle he had been fighting for a few years.
His death was the second death from my neighborhood in less than a year, as another Roseville native had passed away suddenly from acute onset leukemia seven months prior.
The mother of a Roseville native, and close friends of both families who had lost their sons, organized a team to walk in Aaron's name. She found a corporate sponsor, MelloSmello, to match ALL donations made to Team Johnson. She has kept us pumped up about the cause, and for this I am thankful.

Where is this long winded story going?

After I sent the email begging for support from my family, I heard nothing. Hours went by, and not even a phone call from a family member....nada.

At 10pm I received an email. It was from the NAMI website...I had received a donation.

$100.00 from an anonymous donor that left a message saying "Keep the faith". I broke down in tears.

I'll be honest, I know who the anonymous donor is, and I will allow the donor to remain anonymous...but the words left in that message will ALWAYS resonate in my heart.

So I sit here, on this gloomy Friday morning...Keeping the faith.

I know EVERYONE has a cause they love to support. Everyone is hit up at an alarming rate, being asked for donations to this fundraiser or that charity.

I don't expect anyone else to contribute, but if you have an extra dollar, it would really be appreciated. It's a safe, credible site. A little really does go a long way.

Happy Friday,
Keep the faith.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Step Two

I don't know where the surge of motivation came from, and frankly, I don't really care. What motivation, you ask? Well, the motivation to be a self advocate. To stop letting others make me feel bad. To put a stop to drama so I can expend energy on the positive things in my life.

I did a brash thing over the weekend. I unfriended every single family member on facebook (GASP! YOU DID WHAT?!). Yeah, you read that right. It's not that I really wanted to, but it's something that I had to do, and I am SO glad I took the plunge.

Why did I HAVE to unfriend my family members? Simple. I'm working very hard on reestablishing a healthy relationship with my mom...and I found out (over the weekend) that certain family members and friends of the family had taken facebook status updates out of context, and questioned my mom about them...making her feel like ALL I WANT TO DO IS GET WASTED AND family sucks at life rocks.

The drama is to be expected. If the drama in my family was put on a scale of 1 to 10, 10 being WHOA DRAMA, and 1 being no family would be rated at 1 Million. No lie.

I'm sure there will be buzz as to why I'm not friends with them anymore...maybe I'll actually get some phone calls for a change, but I can't be too sure, nor will I lose sleep over it.

Maybe I'm being dramatic myself...but I strongly believe that by weeding out people that are causing my life strife, I can focus my energies elsewhere...and that makes me really excited!

How do you feel about having your family on facebook? Would you (or have you) ever unfriended anyone?

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Thank You, Primetime

"If you don't walk out the door by the time I count to three, you're going to bed IMMEDIATELY when we get home."


"One more time and you will get a time-out!"


"I swear, you're going to make me freak out"

...Not the best or most mature dialogue to come out of my mouth. I'm tellin ya, toddlers are PRO'S at driving adults to the brink. I love little man dearly, but WOW has be been testing me lately.





and the latest....


Yeah...imagine hearing the previous...over and over and over again. Recollecting the dialogue between the two of us is enough to make ME cringe!!

Rewind to yesterday. We (little man and I) had experienced a challenging morning with one another, surrounding the amount of hats he could bring to daycare. I had told him he was going to bed immediately when daycare was over, and that he was frustrating me a LOT. I swear, the car ride to his daycare in the morning left me with a dozen unwanted grey hairs.

When I picked him up that afternoon, he had been good all day. A good report is enough to change my heart....hence, I did not send him to bed when we got home. However, when he threw a fit about WANTING CEREAL FOR DINNER I sent him to his room. I really don't like yeah.

While he was settling down in his room, I whipped up some homemade pizza (thanks to betty crocker just add water pizza crust, and other misc. ingredients I had laying around)...I baked the pie, and we enjoyed a delicious meal. When the meal was finished, we spent some time together, then I put him to bed (only to be met with resistance as is the norm these days..."JUST THESE MANY MORE MINUTES, MOM!").

After he settled in, I found myself channel surfing...only to come across Primetime. And what was the topic on "Primetime: The Outsiders"? Disciplining Children.

They followed three families; All raising a child/children alone. A single mom, a single father and a single grandmother (I was a bit annoyed that they didn't follow a fourth family that has both parents in the household, but whatevs). The single mom followed the time-out model....and she took it to an extreme that I could see myself doing, but I know I'm not THAT bad.

In a nutshell, I found it ironic that the day I had a blowout with my son was the same day this program aired. I'm glad I caught it, taught me new techniques (although some I was already practicing) like ignoring the negative behavior, and praising the positive behavior (even if you're frustrated...).

A happy toddler equals a happy Mama...and vice versa!!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Here's a Turn

I remember back to my childhood (it was a good one, in case you were wondering). I was afforded many riches; going to parks, participating in any sport I asked to play, regular family meals (until I reached middle-school, when meal time turned into fend for yourself..I digress)...You get the point.

My basic needs were met. I laughed with friends and family alike. Life was simple. Life was good.

Fast forward to high school, when my world crumbled before my eyes. My parents divorced due to my mothers' infidelity. My grades dropped. I lost self worth. I stopped laughing with my family...I basically stopped communicating with my family altogether.

The pain of watching my world collapse was part of a deep wound that never fully healed. Instead of confronting the issue I moved on, leaving the wound to fester. It would be brought up on many occasions in the years following, and was a stake driving myself and my mother further apart.

Little man came into the picture, and my mother told me she would be there to help. She was (initially) very supportive, and although she never stopped helping me, getting help from her entailed an enormous struggle on my end. Hours of begging, pleading and tears. It hasn't been fun.

Turning point:

My mom and I actually scheduled a time to meet, just the two of us, to talk about things. We went to a local restaurant, and enjoyed the patio together whilst sipping soda and sharing some appetizers. It took a while for us to talk about some of our major issues...but it was a great starting point. Hopefully we can heal some wounds from the past, and learn how to laugh together again.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Here's a Twist

I've finally come to the realization that being around people make me happy. Weird, I know.

I've always known myself to be optimistic, and others around me have constantly told me that I'm an extrovert...I usually just shrugged my shoulders and muttered "well alrighty then!" and moved onto the next topic.

At a time when you're supposed to get to know yourself (aka college) I was almost always drunk. I had many internal issues I didn't want to deal with, so instead of turning to self discovery, I masked my issues with booze...and a lot of it, at that.

Becoming a mom has extremely tamed my wild horses. However, the horses inside me still yearn to run wild, but in a different way than six years ago. They yearn for spontaneity, and adult human contact. They yearn to be included, and accepted amongst my peers. My wild horses crave laughter with others, instead of laughter in the solace of my home, alone. They wish I am able socialize (with adults) in a casual social setting apart from the workplace on a regular basis.

A large part of my life I am still adjusting to is allowing my horses to run free, but doing so as a mother instead of a crazy young single 20-something....and also the way the people who were in my life pre-little man react differently towards me post little man. I can't really blame them...I mean, I was the first to have a child....and children really do change EVERYTHING. I can imagine seeing me sober most of the time, and slightly less wild'n crazy has also been an adjustment for them...but that's just an assumption.

Me, getting to know me, has been an extremely interesting process thus far. There's still a lot about me I haven't discovered...The path has been traveled since the day I became pregnant with little man, and everyday since I've been enjoying the ride as much as I can.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Single Parenthood.

I feel like this is a bold, bold statement...but sometimes I think I make single parenting look damn good.

Let me be the first to tell you that being a single parent has presented me with an intense list of con's that have weighed heavy on my heart. Here's a pro, and a con;

I do (and deal with) everything alone - the only resistance I'm met with is my own subconscious (and that of a 3.5 year old).

I do (and deal with) everything alone - No second opinions for this chick. No ulterior way of handling an intense situation.

Coincidence that they're pretty much the same? I think not.

I'll venture to say I'm stubborn..and I RE-FUSE to let the con's prevent little man from experiencing a well-rounded childhood.

I came to the realization that I make single parenting look easy when I was browsing some pictures I had uploaded to shut your face facebook.

I have pictures of the two of us on the field of the Metrodome, of us ice skating at the excel center, of play dates at the park...Almost every single photo I've taken of myself and little man have been taken by strangers. I tell you this only to shed some light on my situation. Is it easy to ask a stranger to take a picture of you and your son? Nope. But it's worth the (slight) embarrassment to capture our moments together. By no means is this a pity party...just a small glimpse of my reality.

I know I've written about my struggle to remain an individual apart from being a mom...and in doing that, I haven't truly disclosed what I go through as a single mom. Sure, I write about little parenting things, about how I get frustrated when little man acts up...or how I feel like I don't fit in as much with my friends who don't have children...and don't forget my struggles to make friends with other parents...Maybe the majority of my thoughts are over shared musings because I yearn for someone to share the sweet (and bitter) moments with. All things considered, I get that I'm a "mom" now. I think know that it has been a change for the better.

I believe in "damning the man". If someone doubts me, I love proving them wrong. Maybe I feel like I'm doing a good job because I know how difficult the last three and a half years have been. I know I've had choices. I could've given up at anytime, but I didn't...and ya know what? It hasn't been easy. I've shed MANY a tear. I've laughed off much frustration...however, the struggles I've been faced with (and continue to face every single day) are absolutely worth it.

Dear Blogger,



Dear Long Weekend,

Friday, September 4, 2009


A while back I made a photo slide show of little man to the tune of Natasha Bedingfield's Pocket Full of Sunshine. On my drive into work this morning the same song was played on the radio. It's not a very popular song, and doesn't get a whole lot of play time these days...but it's a beautiful song.

I'll spare you all of the lyrics (because I normally skip over copied lyrics when I come across them myself) but if you're really interested, you can read them here.

The song lyrics got me thinking (scary, yes...), music can be SO powerful...and can completely make or break a mood. Some people are so versed in music they can declare one song as their theme. I, on the other hand, am NOT well versed in music. Instead, I'm a simple top-40's chick...who loves all most things played on the radio.

Where am I going with all of this rambling? I am in dire need of good music in my life. Music I can sing to. Music that makes me bop my head to the catchy riff. Music that moves me.

I'm not necessarily begging for you to make me mixed cd's, but I wouldn't be opposed to it either!!

What kind of music makes you groove?

Thursday, September 3, 2009

My Sweet Little Man

Little man is a 2.5 ft tall bundle of sensitivity...and here's why:

While watching a "best of" episode of So You Think You Can Dance (don't judge me, there's NOTHING on television these days), little man declared this after every slow dance:

"Mooooooom, that's AWESOME. Oh my gosh, I'm going to cry."

..Is it just me, or is he sweet?
...Is it just me, or does he need a serious dose of testosterone?!

I love him.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009


Have you ever googled yourself? You know you have. EVERYONE has. For me, it had been a while since I typed my name into the search bar. The last time I wondered what one could find out about me via the net was when I had an unpleasant fellow from the Internet find out my address....creepy, I know.

Much to my surprise, I found out a few things when I googled my name today.

1) I have a twitter account, and I am a hard-working single mama.
2) I ran a 5K at a 9.06 minute pace.
3) I am participating in a National Alliance for Mental Illness walk (NAMI) in honor of a high school classmate that recently passed away.

All of these things actually put a smile on my face. They are all small details of my life that I am pleased to find out the Internet discloses, although they are nothing I'd bring up in an everyday convo.

So, since we've already covered that you HAVE googled yourself...have you googled yourself LATELY? Did you like what you found?