An Adventure Awaits

Dear future son or daughter,

I want you to know that I will always be here for you. I want to be able to come to me for anything and everything. I want you to live a full life of happiness. I want you to reach beyond that stars to achieve all your dreams and goals. There are so many things I already want for you and you haven’t even been brought into my life yet. But there are some very important things I want you to always remember from the hardest days to the easiest days, just always remember this.

1. Be Brave.

Don’t be afraid to step out of your comfort zone and try new things. Don’t be afraid to speak your mind and let your ideas and thoughts be known. Don’t be afraid to make new friends, don’t be afraid to step out on a stage for a performance or speech. “Be fearless in the pursuit of what sets your soul on fire.”

2. Take the time to enjoy your childhood.

One day, you will grow up. You will be getting ready for your first day at your first real job and I will be so proud of you, and I will probably be brought back to the day you took your first steps and the day you rode your first bike; I may miss the days when you were small enough to fit in my arms, but I will be looking forward to being a part of all the wonderful things you will accomplish in this world. There will be a day, maybe in your senior year of high school or your first day of college where you will look back and miss being six-years-old without a care in the world. So take the time to soak up all the memories and moments that make your heart smile; Don’t grow up faster than you have to.

3. Stand up for what you believe in.

Your opinion matters, your thoughts matter. There will always be someone in your life who won’t agree with you, and that’s okay. It’s okay to agree to disagree; However, there will also be those few who try to put you down for thinking/believing the way you do, and that is NOT okay. Your thoughts matter, your opinions matter. You want to grow up to be an astronaut?! GREAT! I will believe whole-heartedly that you can do anything you set your mind to. I will support you and back you up for as long as I can, but you must remember to stand up for yourself too. Because you matter.

4. You could never do anything to make me stop loving you.

You are going to make mistakes, you are going to do things that you know who shouldn’t and you will do them anyway. I want you to make mistakes, that’s how you will learn. Don’t be afraid to come to me when you do mess up. Don’t be afraid to talk to me when you don’t know what to do next. You will make me mad, you will make me cry, and sometimes you may even disappoint me. But those will just be moments in a lifetime of other moments. We will move on and I will still love you. We all fail sometimes, but I would rather you try and fail as opposed to not trying and never knowing what could have happened.

5. Don’t let society define you.

Society will tell you that you have to be straight, that you have to be skinny, and if you’re a girl, you should be sensitive, love pink, and must never break a nail. If you’re a boy they will tell you that you throw like a girl (whatever that means), you must never cry, and you must be super into sports and that school doesn’t matter if you’re a good athlete, and apparently you must be super muscular. SCREW SOCIETY. You be you and that’s good enough. Make society accept the real you, don’t change yourself to fit into society. “Let your smile change the world, but don’t let the world change your smile.”

“I love you forever, I’ll like you for always. As long as I’m living my baby you’ll be.”

as-soon-as-i-saw-you

 

Love,

Mom.

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A Thank you Letter to My Ex Best Friend

We were childhood best friends. Everyone; even us, said we would be friends forever. We did everything together, we told each other everything, and we told one another that we would be each others maid of honors and the god parent to each others children. We were best friends for 13 years. In the end we hurt one another, and I’m being completely honest; that was never my intention. It hurts me that I hurt you. Today we are on separate paths, building our families and making our dreams come true; and maybe one day our paths will join together again. But for now, I need to say thank you.

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Thank you for being my rock.

I never would of made it through my parents divorce without you. I never would of made it through my childhood without you and your mom. You were my second family and my second home. When my mom was in a drunken rage you were there, when my dad was too drunk to drive home after a late night of fishing you were there, when my dad decided he needed to be a dad when he was drunk and have a “talk” with my boyfriend when I was sixteen, you were there; because we all know my dad was an ass… even if he was a little right. You were there through almost everything. So Thank You.

Thank you for being my sister, my family.

I was one of those selfish friends and I didn’t like to share my best friend. You understood that and told me I wasn’t the best friend but the sister. I was family and you can’t get rid of family. You canceled plans for me, you planned on spending all of summer with me. You were the older sister that I always needed. You protected me and my heart when my mom was being a b****. You were there through the heart breaks and the high school drama. You knew everything about me, and I knew everything about you. And everyone always knew that they would never be as close as you and I were. We couldn’t be replaced.

Thank you for breaking down my walls.

You were the only person who I ever allowed to see the person behind all of the walls, and when my parents split and I put a few more up, you were the only person who was able to break them down. I was able to be completely honest with you and not once did you judge me, even when I was judging me. You were my other half and I miss that, but if it’s meant to be, it will be.

Thank you for proving that a child hood best friend is a sacred gift.

Not everyone is as lucky as you and to have a best friend that was there for your ENTIRE childhood, and into adult hood too. I never really realized how lucky I was to have you until you were gone. You knew every single part of me for so long; I always used the line of “I could never stop being your best friend, the bitch knew to much” (; I honestly believe that there is a reason we were as close as we were. It was fate. We both needed each other at different times for different reasons.205933_1981781340512_1204930_n

I miss you more than anything. I wish we were still as close as we once were. And I hope one day we can get back to that. You will always hold a special place in my heart and I will always hold all of our memories and inside jokes close. Because you are the family I chose and that will never change.

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XOXO

Emily

Failure

I grew up in a home where my mom basically did not accept failure. ESPECIALLY when it came to school and work. Anything below a B was not okay in her eyes. Because of this environment I am now terrified of failing in anything in life.

I have recently failed in a few ways and I am not feeling okay with it. Deep down I know it’s okay to fail, and that everyone does at some point. That’s how we learn; and really wish that I was truly okay with making a mistake. But I’m not.

 

I had a plan I was going to graduate early and I was excelling in school. I recently ran into a few challanges and because of it I failed a few of my courses and I started having panic attacks. I have never failed a class before. I know that I can retake them and it’s not the end of the world, but it completely throws of my plan.

I also recently had a miscarriage. I felt like a failure. Like it was my fault; and deep down I know there was noting I could of done, but my anxiety got the best of me and it was all down hill from there.

I was making mistakes at work, failing classes (something I never do), and I didn’t feel like I was being a very good wife. I felt like a nuisance to a lot of people. I didn’t feel like myself. I was failing left and right. I knew things would look up, but it just kept dragging on and on.

It’s okay to fail. I know that deep down. But growing up it was drilled into my brain that you can’t fail; it just wasn’t an option. So when I fail now as an adult I start having panic attacks. Anxiety kills me.

Just keep walking forward though. Because things will get better. They can’t go downhill forever.

Fall seven times, stand up eight.

XOXO

Emily It's Okay to Fail

 

 

I’ll Never Forget how She Changed My Life.

I remember the first time I walked past her classroom; her voice carried and she was loud. Extremely loud for how small she appeared. She was wearing a brown tennis skirt with a white t-shirt. I was a tiny freshman and she scared me, so much that I hoped I would never have to have a class with her. My sophomore year this nightmare came true. I found myself wondering into this very classroom only to realize it was the teacher I hoped I would never have.

She handed out her syllabus and began reviewing her rules and I began to realize just how much I was wrong. She allowed us to have phones out in class and we were able to bring food into her class and use her microwave to heat up such food. That stuff never happened in high school. I began to get to know her more and more. I opened up about my parent’s divorce and how I was walking to school everyday. This began a friendship I know I will have for a lifetime. She gave me her cell phone number and said to text her my address and she would pick me up and bring to and from school. We soon discovered she lived right down the street from my dad’s house which made the whole pick up thing even easier when I was staying with him. Sometimes she would bring me breakfast and other days we would go out lunch. She became the mom I always wanted. We exchanged Christmas and birthday gifts. I was in every class of her’s that I could be all the way through senior year. When the time came she requested to read my name at graduation and thismeant the world to me.

To this day her and I still go out to lunch and I go and visit whenever I get the chance. She loves my husband and knows how good he is to and for me. She will always be my guardian angel here on earth in a way.

Angi Verstraete, you made the biggest difference in my life. I don’t believe I would of made it through high school had you not taken me in under your wing. I am lucky you took the time to “see the diamond underneath and polished me until I shined”. But it wasn’t just me, it was anyone you saw who needed a helping hand. Sometimes it was the simple act of buying them the binder or notebook they needed for school. Or letting them eat lunch in your room when they had to much anxiety to eat in the cafeteria full of people. You deserve so much more than I can give you. I will always be thankful for you. Although I still can’t call you Angi; Mrs. V, you will always hold a special place in my heart.Dr. Seuss- Mrs. V

Budget Update: Week 1

I did the research and my husband I and finally sat down and created a budget; however, it is only week one so I still have a lot to learn. But what I have learned so far has been very eye opening. The moment we started budgeting it made me very aware of the money I was spending.

Save Vs Spend Two Way Street Signs Point to Fiscal Responsibility

The first month is a test month. It is used to see where you are spending your money, to make sure the money you are budgeting is a realistic amount. It shows you how much money is going towards bills and what money you could of saved instead of spending. I told my husband to save all of his receipts so we can keep and accurate documentation. Based on what we budgeted we should be saving about $444 a month, which is a lot more than I expected. We budgeted our money for when we go out to eat and when we go out with our friends.

We are now paying attention to where our money is going and we should be able to pay off my hospital bills and student loans without stressing about it.

When my husband and I first got engaged we had a conversation about money and bank accounts and what debts we were getting into the marriage with. He of course had no debt. I had hospital bills and student loans. We both agreed that money was one thing we never wanted to stress or fight about.

Money Stress

Because after all, no matter how much we wish it did; money does not grow on trees.

We are working towards our goal of not living paycheck to paycheck.

Money tree

 

 

Savings?

My husband and I have always said “This paycheck we are going to save money.” And while some of it does end up in our savings; much of our savings ends up paying our car payment and other bills.

I am currently working a part time job to attempt to help with all of the expenses we have, however it isn’t enough and soon I will have to quit this part time job because I will be taking on more classes at school in order to graduate early.

We are also talking about having a baby, and while we do receive more money for having a kid, it’s not a lot and soldiers don’t make enough as it is. So what do we do?

Currently we are living paycheck to 8 days (usually more) before paycheck. So I mentioned creating a budget. He wasn’t too enthused by the idea but I believe it would help us know where all of our money is and where it should be going; and hopefully help to  beef up our savings too.

Problem is I don’t even know where to begin when making a budget. There are so many bills that come across our table it can get stressful. But I am determined to put more money into our savings, because you never know when something can happen and with him leaving soon I know it would create some peace of mind knowing that if need be we have something to fall back on.

So here is my goal, every pay check I receive, I am going to put half of it into savings. Although it’s not a lot it is at least more than we have now.

Now I have to research how to make and stick to a budget.

Wish me luck! Weekly updates to come.Making a budget

Adulting.

In the recent months I have started to hear the term “adulting” more and more. “What is adulting?” “How do I adult?” “Don’t make me adult today.”

Obviously, today’s world is much different than the years and decades before it. My generation has the technology and knowledge that is supposed to make it easier; or so they say.

I got married young, and I continue to hear that I must of figured out how to adult pretty early. This is so far from the truth though. I was never taught how to make a budget and stick to it, or how to balance a checkbook (although I don’t have a checkbook so this probably isn’t the most important thing). I’m still trying to get ahead on my bills and make sure I have a good credit score… whatever that is.

We’ve decided to try to have a kid… how are we going to afford that? I don’t know but it’s the adult thing to do. I hate going to work. HATE IT. I can’t wait to graduate so I can do something I actually enjoy and have an interest in.

So many others are much better at adulting than I am. How? I have no idea because I still don’t know what I am doing. What does it even mean to adult? I mean my generation grew up so fast; all we wanted was to be adults. We didn’t want our parents telling us what to do and we thought we knew more than the rest of the world. So here we are; all grown up and we are completely lost.

Turns out we don’t know as much as we thought we did.

Maybe we never will really know exactly what ‘adulting’ is. Maybe it’s just about being a grown person finally taking responsibility for our actions.

So how do you make a budget? How do you save money? How do you adult?

adulting

 

Because The Times They Are A-Changin’.

Change.

That one word can throw many into a frenzy, while others welcome it.

Many things can change in one’s life. From small to big. Sometimes it’s the color or cut of their hair or maybe it’s as big as where they live. We go through life and are told to make so many decisions that things have to change; it’s inevitable.

In High School it might of been your group of friends or what electives you decided to take.

In College things get bigger. You have to decided what the heck you want to do for the rest of your life. Who are you going to be as you get older. You have to decide are you going to stay up late finishing your Netflix binge? Or are you actually going to sit down and finish that paper you’ve been telling yourself to do for the past week.

And in all of these stages of life, curve balls are bound to be thrown in; you may get a new job, you may get pregnant, your significant other breaks your heart, you get married… Etc.

As you get older the curve balls get bigger. The older I’ve gotten, the more change has been introduced into my life. From longing for a baby, having a puppy who has to be let out in the day which tends to change my plans.

I get older, I get more mature, and my problems tend to mature. How am I going to pay bills? Will I make it to class tomorrow? I have slowly learned that I obviously can’t slow down time, as much as I might want to. Things will continue to change and I just have to roll with the punches; learning to roll with the punches is key. Stop stressing and enjoy what is going on around you.

The times they are a changin

Breaking Stereotypes

For those of you in the military life (spouse or otherwise), you have most likely heard the term ‘dependapodomous’. The term we use to describe those who get involved with someone in the military, and there only goal is to marry that individual in order to get all the benefits and money (which few seem to know the military really does not get paid all that well.) I heard this term when my husband and I first started dating and I had no idea what he was talking about. I had absolutely no idea that there were ‘benefits’ that came with marrying someone in the military, or that they got more money just for being married and having a ‘dependent’ or the insurance or any of that. I just knew I loved the man that was standing in front of me and it didn’t matter, what he did or what came with being with him. He knew this, he knew that I never wanted to depend on anyone to get through life. I’m stubborn.

Ever since I heard this term I have been fighting hard to not fall under this category. I work 2 jobs and I go to school, it’s not just because I don’t want to depend on him, it’s so I can pay my own bills and pay for my own gas and help with our bills when I can.

I also want to be able to stay at home for awhile once we do have kids. I don’t want to have to bring my kids to daycare, I want to watch and help them grow.

I’ve met a few woman who say it’s the mans job to go to work and get his hands dirty in order to provide for her and this drives me up the wall. They sit at home. Have their Starbucks,  Kate Spade purses, and $200 jeans.

This probably shouldn’t bother me, but it does. Stay at home if that’s what works best for you and your family, but just because the army calls you a dependent does not mean you have to be 100% dependent.

I’m breaking the stereotype that a lot of  people see military wives being. It’s okay to fit this stereotype for some, but in my mind I never want to make my husband feel like he absolutely HAS to provide for me.

Stereotypes

Learning to Appreciate.

ap·pre·ci·a·tion
əˌprēSHēˈāSH(ə)n/
noun
 1.the recognition and enjoyment of the good qualities of someone or something.

 

appreciationAppreciation is something we all deserve to be felt; but how do you show someone or something they are appreciated? Do you go out of your way to make them breakfast or say thank you? Or do you simply just take there actions for granted because you expect them to do it or they do these things every day. I must say I am guilty of this; and I keep catching myself and I feel like a terrible person.

My husband is my best friend; but he is also the best at pissing me off, as I’m sure we have all succeeded in this area with our spouses and or significant others. Sometimes I forget to appreciate all the wonderful things he does for me.  So this post goes out to my wonderful husband; even when he annoys the shit out of me.

Thank you for waking me up in the morning to kiss me and say goodbye

It really is the little things that remind me he still loves me every day. Him waking me up in the morning before he goes to work is one of the small things I am really going to miss when he has to leave.

Thank you for the surprises

I get surprised with a number of things all the time; sometimes it’s a grand gesture like bringing me out on a surprise date, sometimes it’s something small like him doing laundry (which turns out actually seems to be a big thing). We’ll go to the store and he’ll purchase a movie I’ve been wanting to see or something for my baking just because he can. It’s the little surprises that keeps our spark alive (well it’s part of it). It’s his was of showing his appreciation for me.

Thank you for the Support. Always.

I recently went off my anti-anxiety and anti-panic attack meds, and because of this I have been an emotional wreck. I’m constantly questioning my ability and overthinking everything that is going on around me/us. He supports me by reminding me to breath in my panic attacks, telling me to make time for my homework because he knows how important school is to me. He supports me by making sure I have the transportation to school and ways to complete my homework. He is one of my biggest supporters and I wouldn’t of made into the National Honor Society without him.

Thank you for looking towards the future with me. 

There was a time where I know he wanted nothing to do with the future. He never planned on having a spouse or kids. He simply planned on living as the bachelor for the rest of his life. And he was okay with that. He knew I wanted a future  with someone but I really tried to never press the idea.. Until one day he said “Imagine our kids playing hockey one day and running around yelling mommy!” Pretty sure I cried. But from that day on he and I have had our eyes on the future, on OUR future, TOGETHER.

Thank you Patrick Bloyd, for being you, for being my best friend and trying to understand my obsession with dogs and elephants as I try to understand your obsession of movies. Thank you for choosing me as the person you want next to you for the many years to come. I promise I will always be your biggest supporter.