The man I call my hero….

 

This has taken me days to complete. I have stared at the computer screen endlessly thinking about where I would start this story. It’s very hard to put into words how much I love my dad. Anyone that knows us knows we have a special bond. It took us many years and many upsets to get to where we are today. I never really realized how much our relationship meant to me until that day……that one day that changed our lives forever. The day that no child is ever ready for. The day you realize there will be one day that you will have to face life without your parent’s. It’s hard to think about that but that day I had no other choice.

I came home from work to find my father sitting at the dinning room table. It was early afternoon which was weird because my dad never finished work till after 6pm. For as long as I could remember. Even if he was sick he was always at work. So I questioned him and really didn’t get a response. He stayed briefly and then said he was going home to rest and he would see me in the morning. I didn’t quite understand but moved on with my night as usual with the kids hoping I would get an answer in the morning.

The morning came and as I was getting the kids ready for school my dad walked in and sat down at the table again. Once the girls were gone he grabbed the phone and said to me ” call 911 I’m having a heart attack and I’ve been having it since yesterday afternoon!”  I was stunned! I couldn’t’ believe what he had just said!  My whole life flashed before my eyes. Not only was I scared but I was furious that he waited to get help! It became one of those selfish moments where I thought “how could he do this to me!” Then I realized how scared he must have been and that was what I saw in his face the day before. I should have known something was wrong. I should have picked up on it! At any rate it seemed like time slowed down. When we were waiting for the ambulance all I could think about is how am I going to live my life without this man! He was my backbone. He was the reason I kept going in life. He was the reason I was able to take care of my girls…… I couldn’t imagine my life would be worth anything if he wasn’t here to make sure of it.

Once we were at the hospital time slowed down even more. The tests he was put through. The obvious pain he was in. It was all too much to go through at once. You have to understand I always looked at this man as indestructible. I wasn’t always the best kid, and trust me when I say I pulled out all the stops when it came to being a bad teenager. No mater what I did, and no matter how many times I did it, he was always there to fix everything. He wasn’t always around as much as he would have liked to have been and he knew I resented him for that but it wasn’t until this moment… the moment time slowed down at the hospital that I realized how much of a hero he was to me for all that he was and all that he did for me. His sacrifices, his pain, his love, his friendship, his heart…. the man he was and the woman he raised me to be…  I didn’t expect to have to think about all I was thinking about so soon. To me he was a young man still… he was barely 60. 17548703_10158317775350304_795232007_o

Telling the girls was by far the hardest part. Not only because they were very close to their grandpa but because we still had no idea what was happening. Between all the tests they were performing and with no answers I didn’t know what to tell them and that was even harder for them to accept.

We went through all these thoughts and feelings together for about a week before we had any answers. He did have a heart attack but with the medication they gave him they were able to stop it. He suffered from what they called “unstable angina”, so no surgery required but from then on he would be on all kinds of different medications to help make sure he lived with the condition. We had no idea what we were in store for but at least he made it. At least he didn’t leave us.

Things definitely were not over once we left the hospital. He went through all kinds of medical emergencies, too many to even begin telling you about, but all of it made me realize how much I love my dad. He had taken care of me and my girls for long enough. It was time for me to grow up and be the kind of woman he raised me to be. I asked him to move in with me and the girls. I wanted to take care of him. It was my turn. He was going through so many things at once. His health, his career….everything being questioned at the same time and I didn’t want him to be alone. He’s  strong enough to  handle it but sometimes you don’t realize how much you need someone until all your strength is gone at once. I watched him go through all of this still with his humor and love and courage and it made me know in my heart that this was all going to work out for all of us. I would be able to take care of him better than he could on his own. And my girls would be able to see their grandpa the way I do. A hero first for putting up with me but also to teach them the way he taught me.985e8c8c305bbd97944dc73d5701a29a

As much as we all went through and as much as things had to change, as a family we made it through. The event that could have destroyed us was the moment our lives changed for the better. I was able to realize how much my dad meant to me and how much he was my hero. And now my girls are going to be able to see what I see. A man who did whatever it took to make sure I had the best life possible. A hero of a father that any daughter would be proud to look up to. It may seem weird and unorthodox but living with a parent at my age has been a blessing. I would never have thought it would work simply because of our crazy relationship but not only is it working, its been the best time of our lives. We are the best of friends and he has my back no matter what. This whole situation brought us so close together and I get to enjoy the remaining years we have watching my girls have a chance to see him as he hero he is and always be to me. e9ed9375b816656ae7f001f96a38a0f7

 

 

Advertisements

Mother Daughter DIY project…… gone wrong?

Last week Julia came to me with this idea she had to do a DIY project for our cats. She had seen this 5 minute craft video on how to create a sort of jungle gym for the them. As I knew March break was around the corner I thought yeah why not. It would be something we could do together and it may even stop the cats from scratching everything else. I watched the little video and it seemed simple enough. All I would need was a box and a trip to the dollar store. Easy right? Well at least that’s what I thought.  project7

After stopping at a storage place to purchase a box, which was $6 dollars, and spending $25 dollars on our trip to the dollar store for our supplies, we went home to get started 🙂 I laid everything out and went over the instructions with Julia on how she wanted the final product to look. We were both pretty exited at this point. We taped the box and cut out the holes perfectly and started painting it together. We were having fun! It looked like this project was going to be a quick success. project5

We quit for the night to let the paint dry. The next day I knew that it was going to be more MY participation as we had to use a glue gun to glue the rope on the sides of the box. At first I thought well this isn’t so bad… the rope I have should be enough for all sides. Well wasn’t I dead wrong!! I had one spool of rope that I paid $ 4 dollars for and it was enough for only one side! And not to mention it took me sooooo long to glue it on! I had one side on and Julia was laughing because I thought I would have enough. Well I wasn’t laughing. Not only did I have to go back to the dollar store to get 3 more spools of rope but that was another $12 I spent on this project! So back at it I went. It took me 2 days to finish it all. project3

Once I had calmed down about the rope and we started figuring out how we were going to decorate it, it became a fun project despite my doubts…:) There were a couple of times I wanted to give up but I saw things through to the finish line. Obviously the best part of this whole experience was being able to come up with the project with Julia but seeing her bring this whole thing together and complete it showed me how smart she is and that makes me the proudest mom ever!project2

Once the project was complete we sat back and watched to see what the cats would do. Going into this I had a suspicious feeling they would not give a crap what it was they were going to continue to scratch my furniture like the good loving cats they are…..and guess what happened?? They sniffed it, looked at it like “what the hell is this and who are you trying to impress” and walked away.  I looked at Julia and said” aren’t mother daughter DIY projects so much fun!!” We had a great big laugh together, then grabbed all the chocolate we could find in the house and watched the voice like any good mother daughter duo should 🙂 🙂

 

My recycling nightmare…..

Any other mom’s out there with kids in school have gone through the days where your kids are taught everything about recycling at school and decide they want to “do what they can for the environment”  at home! Well as you guessed it this is where my nightmare began. For weeks I heard all about what is recyclable and what isn’t and how even just doing our little part at home we are saving the world!! I was described in detail how I need to rinse everything and break all the boxes down and wash off  all the labels….blah, blah, blah…

So I did what any mother would do. I listened ( to basically shut them up!) , and I bought a recycling bin and started “doing my part”. You can imagine with a family of 5 that we had a lot of recyclable stuff. Definitely more than one bin could hold and way more responsibility then I wanted to take on but worth seeing how happy it made them. And….don’t tell them…but I actually began to see a difference in how much garbage we produced. We went from 6 bags a week to 3 but at the same time the recycling TOOK OVER my kitchen!  So even though it was a rough start we managed to be able to do our part as much as we could. Then one day we put our recycling out to the curb. It was all neat and separated and I dare say the best looking recycling bin outside and I was confident the recycling men would be pleased with our efforts!

Imagine my surprise when the recycling truck came and went WITHOUT taking my bin! I was astonished!…no pissed is more like it! All that went through my head was ” do you people know what I went through to make sure my family recycled!!??”. All my confidence from earlier had gone out the window. I sent the kids out to pick up the bin cause I couldn’t even look at it. When they brought it in the house it had a sticker on it! The sticker said “please sort”. I was beside myself. How much more could I have done with only having one bin??

After I screamed and yelled and calmed down I looked up the recycling website to see what the actual rules are. It says that I was doing everything right. Literally no reason they shouldn’t have taken it. Being the smart ass that I am I thought ” well if you want it to be all sorted them maybe you should provide me with as many bins as I need to have it separated the way you like!” I’ll need one for glass, one for paper, one for plastic, one for cans and one for boxes! That’s 5!. As much as it would take up way to much room in my kitchen I’m all about making people HAPPY!  After thinking about it I was going to email them and request my free bins and just as I’m looking up the email address I see (in the fine print of course) that your only allowed 2 bins for each household! Well you can imagine how upset THAT made me! How dare you not take my recycling and put a sticker on my bin that says tax payers pay over $250,000 a year for people to sort it for you! All of us mother’s who are listening to our children who want to save the world WE destroyed take the time to sort it and look what happens! You don’t take the recycling!  And then complain that WE pay for people to sort it! All I have are solutions… provide me with the 5 bins for free and eliminate your $250,000 a year 🙂 Its pretty simple. Office-Recycling

Needless to say I have yet to receive a response to my email but I’m not surprised. I may have sounded like a crazy person but dammit I have a good point….lol. For the time being it was actually the girls who came up with a solution of using recycling bags to sort everything properly so we don’t get stuck with last weeks recycling again.  It’s worked so far but has added to the ongoing hate I have for recycling. Thus continues my nightmare but hey….as long as the kids are happy !! 🙂 🙂

 

P.s If it ever happens again one of 2 things will happen, 1. I will throw my recycling bin at your truck or 2. I will stop recycling all together and you will be held responsible for killing the dreams of my innocent loving children!… balls in your court 🙂cta_recycle

 

Laundry vs. Hydro…..a stay at home mom’s nightmare

The other day I was doing laundry…. as usual. In the middle of folding the dry load I had a realization.  I do most,  if not all of my laundry during the day when the kids are at school. If I didn’t do that not only would the laundry pile up but I would never have the time to be doing it at night. With all the after school activities, dinner and homework, I’m beat by the end of the night and the last thing I would want to do would be LAUNDRY! As a stay at home mom I’m always scheduling things. I like to think about ways to make our lives easier but I also like to have alone time at night and have a bubble bath with a giant glass of red wine on ice lol…..So during my realization I weighed the pros and cons of trying to do my laundry at night which according to the peak times hydro provides is the CHEAPEST time to do so. All I could think about is where the hell does hydro get their information. There are a lot of stay at home mom’s that have the same routine as me. Can you imagine if we all stayed up really late to do laundry because its cheaper?? Not only would we be useless to our kids because of lack of sleep but we would never be able to fit in time for just ourselves. Every mom needs alone time. I am not prepared to sacrifice my adult time to save a few bucks. Why wouldn’t hydro realize that the majority of people do their laundry during the day ? It would  make it cheaper and it  would cut down all these crazy costs they keep saying they will cut down for us working class people if they realized how much it would help families with a stay at home mom to make it low peak time during the day or flat rate.ontario-hydro-prices

I don’t usually get involved with all the media controversy and emotions that surround the issues with Ontario Hydro but all I kept thinking about was how stupid can they be? I mean really…. something so simple as flat rate hydro times can get THIS stay at home mom thinking then why can’t THEY realize it?? At any rate it was a serious realization for me that it doesn’t matter in the end. I will stick to my routine of afternoon laundry to keep not only my sanity but my family’s too. They need me to have my own time at night as much as me 🙂 Don’t get me wrong it would be amazing to save a few bucks but what I have to say about it in the grand scheme of things doesn’t really matter. Hydro will keep rising. No matter who we elect or what people think can be changed or bettered. We live in a time where people use way too many things that need to be plugged in. We rely too much on it. We have lost ourselves to technology and there are not a lot of people realizing it. So the only thing I can do is rant about it. I’d like to think that what I have to say will change the world some day with all my opinions lol…. but the only thing it will do is help my kids realize it. I guess the whole point to my rant or ” realization” is that I have got lots of things on my plate but laundry at night isn’t one of them!!……..:)maxresdefault

 

 

 

The choice to be a stay at home mom and how we all made the decision as a family……

Well as I mentioned before, I am currently a stay at home mom. It hasn’t always been that way. I had my first child when I was 20 and my second when I was 26. I was also their sole provider so I had to work in order to provide for my kids. I always ended up working go nowhere jobs that paid minimum wage. All that did was pay the bills and help me provide as much as I could for my girls. It never made me feel worthy of being their mom and I felt like I was going no where. Until one day I was offered a dream job. A job that would pay me well and offer benefits for the girls and endless possibilities of moving up. I submerged myself into everything work. I was gone from the house all day for 6 days a week and it was starting to take a toll on my family. I started caring more about work more than what my girls were going through. I noticed their grades were slipping, they were talking to me less and it felt like we were loosing our relationship. I would try to balance things but all I would hear from the girls was ” why do you care…. it’s not like you’re ever home!” Hearing that was like a jab at my heart. I knew I had to change things immediately or things were going to start getting worse. I started trying to be home more and leave work at work but things were just falling apart. One day I went into work and was told that I was being laid off from a job I had for 4 years. The job I had always wanted. Even though I knew it was probably for the best, like an act of intervention from god, I stared worrying about how I would provide for my kids. At some point in everyone’s life you question “what’s the next step? how do I move on from this?” well the simple answer for me was I was going to do everything possible to figure out how to continue providing for them but also be home more to be here for them as a mother and help guide them. I had some advantages as I had regular income from other sources. All I had to do was make sure everything was paid each month and try to do as much as I could from home to help provide for our family. Whatever I had to do to achieve this I was prepared to do. As this revelation had hit me I also did realize that my children are older and attend school daily so I did have time to get a part-time job. My boyfriend was so amazing at this point. This all happened around the time we had begun dating and he knew how many changes that were happening and the emotional time I was going through. He watched me apply for job after job and get no where. I was so depressed. I felt like I wasn’t good enough, that no one wanted to hire me. It started affecting all aspects of my life. The girls were amazing during all of this too. They could tell I was struggling but they would continually express how happy they were that I was home more. I tried focusing on other things to help get me out of my rut. I have always been into arts and history so I started researching things. I started doing art and DIY projects at home, either alone or with the girls. I felt like I was opening up again. Like I was finding a way to deal with other issues I was having with employment. Until one day Steven and I had a conversation that would change everything. We had a genuine heart to heart talk about responsibilities and expectations regarding our family and bills. We both have our own sources of income which pay our portions of our bills and although Steven is in a better position to save money I am able to save what I can when I can. So after discussing all of that he did the most amazing thing. He looked at me and said ” we are able to be a functioning family only because of you. We would all be better off with you staying home and spending the much-needed time with the kids and taking on the responsibilities of the house. I will go to work and that way we have the best of both worlds.” I couldn’t believe what he was saying. He was encouraging me to spend time with my kids and follow some of my dreams at the same time. I am finally able to be an active parent in my children’s life. I am now able to not only take care of all the household duties but to be involved in the girl’s education and extracurricular activities. I have begun to write which to anyone that knows me has always been a passion of mine, and I have also developed an interest in design and been able to produce some great art as well. Our lives function better now then they ever have. I know some people might say that’s so old-fashioned and not socially acceptable to which I say if you were in my situation would you not do the same thing? I am able to do all this because of the amazing family I have. They support me more and more everyday. I am honored to be able to have this chance. This is the path I was supposed to take. I can feel it……:)

 

Definition of a great man ….

A few years ago a great man entered our lives. A man who has changed the dynamic of our family. A man the kids and I could finally trust completely.  I would like to share our story because I think its important for other single mothers who are raising their children alone to know that you are not alone. There are fears every woman has about allowing someone new into their kids life. Like in my case. I have 2 children from 2 different fathers. Both children do not see their fathers for different reasons and its mostly been all their lives. I haven’t  always made the best choices when it comes to men in my life… its a mistake most women make. I didn’t always understand my worth or my children’s worth. Until a few years ago the men I did allow in our lives were not nice to me or to my kids. They tried changing us and it pulled me and my girls apart. I could never understand how these men could treat my amazing kids this way until one day I realized that not only was I the one allowing it to happen but my children were suffering and I was letting them grow up under a strangers rules and feeling unloved. I realized that we needed a change. We needed to be able to spend time together just us… getting to know each other again because we had lost our connection. We moved into a very nice new house and I forgot all about having a man or someone else to help me raise the girls. I believed in myself that I was going to create an amazing life for all of us. And that is exactly what I did. I have a very strong relationship with my girls. So when I met Steven I was in a very good spot in my life. I was more confident in myself and what I wanted and did not want in our lives. When we started dating each other I knew from the moment we met Steven was going to change my life for the better. I had learned a lot from the previous mistakes I had made and decided it was time for me to get to know him without the kids involved. I needed to make sure that if I was going to allow someone into our lives it was going to be someone who was worthy. And so it began. Not only did I fall in love with him more and more each day but he became my very best friend. I have never been in a relationship like ours. We compliment each other in every way. He is so kind, generous, loving and warm and I couldn’t believe how much I had been missing in my life. After a year of dating we both decided that we were definitely in love we were ready to introduce the girls into our lives together. I was very worried….not in the sense that he was going to be bad for them, but more worried about the girls feelings. As I had said they had been through a lot because of the mistakes I had made and the last thing I wanted was for them to be upset about my decision. I did have a very strong feeling that because of the man Steven is and how he treated me that the girls would see he was different. And I was right. From the very first moment they met him I knew they were going to be close. And that’s exactly what happened. We started spending lots of time with them together. I could see that they were developing a very strong bond. We would do things together as a family. Steven would have a couple days off during the week and on those days we would always be doing something with the girls. As a man that works as hard as he does you would think that he would go hang out with his friends or want to do his own things as a man who lived on his own with few responsibilities but as each week came and went he focused all his time on me and my kids. We would talk about it and I would say to him how much I enjoyed spending time together as a family and he would always say if we are going to be a family all together one day then we need to make sure we all get to know each other and he would say how much he wanted to take care and love all of us. He would go out of his way to tell the girls how wonderful they are and how much joy they have brought to his life and I would watch them together and I could literally see their eyes light up and their hearts opening up for him. Pretty soon all they ever wanted to do was see Steve. They developed an honest to god friendship with him that has become so strong it has added so much joy to our lives. He stepped into our lives knowing all of my faults and past mistakes as well as knowing how hard we had fought to be happy and did something no man has ever done. He has always told them ” I may not be your father and I’m certainly not going to be your disciplinary parent but I am going to love you and take care of you and be your friend forever”. And that is exactly what he is.  He treats them with such respect and admiration and that has gained their trust and respect in return. We are all so happy. Even when it came to moving in together we wanted to be sure the girls were included in every decision and that’s exactly what we did. We have all never been happier. Steven has taken on big responsibilities when it comes to our family and it takes my breath away that he has done all he has done for my girls. I have never met someone like him. He is what I have been looking for my whole life. A man that not only is my best friend but a man who loves my children as much as I do and treats them with the respect they deserve. Everything that led up to this point was a test or lesson or mountain I’ve had to climb to get to him. I know now that we will be happy forever, as one big family filled with love, laughter, joy, happiness, and trust. Together we will raise OUR children the best way we can. And oh how sweet it is for the girls to finally have a step dad that they love and trust and can go to for anything. I know that this great man will love them and cherish them always. And that… that is the definition of a great man !

 

 

 

What happens when there is a 6 year gap between your kids…….

Having 2 children is hard enough. Having 2 girls is harder. Having 2 girls that are 6 years apart is literally the hardest!! My oldest is 15 and youngest 8. They fight like cats and dogs. The oldest hates having more chores, hates playing games with her sister, hates snuggling her sister, hates being in the same room as her sister, hates breathing the same air as her sister… blah, blah, blah, blah. The youngest hates that her older sister wont read to her, hates that her older sister has more sleep overs, hates that her older sister goes out with her friends, hates that her older sister wont bath with her.. again… blah, blah, blah, blah. So you see in this situation nothing they ever do together is pleasant. 90% of the time I end up separating them.  This is not how things played out in my head when I imagined them growing up lol. Not at all. In my head it was all ” I love my sister and we are best friends” but in reality each time they are in the same room I feel like running as fast as I can lol.  Being a stay at home mom gives me a birds eye view of all things sisters. Watching them sometimes I say to myself ” maybe I made a mistake… maybe they are too far apart. Will they ever really love each other?” I find myself sometimes yelling at them more than enjoying how great they are. Come on other mom’s out there… you know you have been through feelings and thoughts similar to mine before. Sometimes you think ” this is it… how long till they move out and I finally get some peace and quiet!!” But as much as they fight and argue and disagree, and as much as I think they hate each other, there are those rare moments.  Those moments that happen with my birds eye view that I cherish. They don’t happen often but sometimes I will walk past one of their rooms and hear them reading. And there’s the off time I catch them snuggling on the couch, or the best is when I hear them say ” I love you”. Those moments melt my heart. They make me realize that as much as I may think they don’t love each other, they are sisters. Sisters will always love each other. Love comes in all forms. And even though I get to see how many different forms that could be in one day I know that at the end of the day its more me then them.  I find as the years go by my need for perfection blinds me to what is actually happening.  Even though my girls are 6 years apart and even though they fight like cats and dogs at the end of the day this is what true sister love looks like.