Q and I spend New Years Eve differently than most folks, but we do most everything differently than most folks…so no surprise there! After putting the girls to bed, we pop the tops of our San pelligrino – Blood Orange is the best – and crack the well worn spine of my planner. We flip to the back, lovingly grazing our fingers over coffee stains, juice stains, children’s artwork, messages and this mom’s daily life. We make it to the back where LAST year at this time we wrote out our goals: health, personal, family… and we talk about it. And we reminisce. Somehow we ALWAYS end up at our first year of marriage, and then two, and so forth.
Q and I are planners. We plan everything. Surprises aren’t always welcome and change, have mercy! We all know how I handle, or don’t handle change. 2013 can be summed up in one word CHANGE. I felt like that cartoon character where someone screams CHANGE I’ll give you change and slaps the guy on the cheek with a dead fish, and then the other cheek and so forth. You think you are in control? You aren’t.
Family – I spent the first half of the year surrounding myself with judgmental women. My house was never clean enough, organized properly, hair done, make up on, jeans worn, styled properly…enough. Listening to negative talk caused me to pull quietly away until I would cry in the evening and Q would brush my hair and tell me that I was MORE than enough for him. For our daughters. For our family. And I KNEW I was enough, I was strong, and I had goals, but they weren’t HER goals or Her goals, or Her’s. Who you surround yourself with matters. Choose wisely.
Parenting – Have you heard that song “On Display, On Display, On Display” from the Real Housewives of New Jersey, Melissa? Well those are my girls. Just today a stranger selling Hummus took a picture of Sooner, without consent, and gushed and gushed about how cute she was and snapped away. EVERYWHERE we go we are a walking show. And recently a woman ran up saying my “halvers were so cute!” At my look of confusion she explained that “halvers are mixed kids, you know, black and white!” Apparently hearing that my kids were sooooooooooooooooooo adorable was supposed to erase the sting of having my daughters called halvers…where they can hear. And this type of thing happens all the time. And I’m tired of people, friends, telling me to get over it. To embrace it. To take joy in it. Gooner spends a lot more time with my Mom since she is located in the states. A lot more skype time as well, but truthfully Gooner identifies most with her Grandma – Nana in Africa. Why? In her words, “I love her, she’s black like me Mom.” And I’m ok with it 100%. So you out there, don’t go confusing my daughter. I’ve got my own fish to fry explaining these things to her. She didn’t come with a bi-racial manual so calling her a halver TO HER FACE makes it difficult for this Mommy.
“Buuuuuuuuuuut you asked for it when you married a black guy.” That was one of the dumber comments of 2013. Honestly it is the same thing as anything, like high school, marriage, childbirth, parenting – you have NO idea until you do it. And I wouldn’t change it. I’d still marry him. And I’d still have brown babies. Speaking of babies…
#3 will make his/her debut in the Spring. That was a shocker. Being as le bebe was a surprise we figured on keeping with that theme and not finding out the gender. We also didn’t tell anyone. Remember this was the year of change, and we had a lot going on. The baby quickly made his/her presence known and I’ve been sick just about every day since.
Health – Halfway thru the year something clicked and everything changed. Instead of sleeping in, living off coffee and stumbling through my day I set an alarm. It went off at 5:30 wherein I woke up, got sick in the bathroom – thank you bebe – and stuffed myself in spandex. I then relived my glory days working out to, The Firm or going for a run. I was/am happier because my day is more organized and my disposition is sunny. I’m a better wife and Mom.
2013 threw a lot of punches, but what a time of growth. It is one of those years that we survived and are the better for it. A time of picking yourself up by your boot straps and dusting yourself off. A time of realizing that fighting isn’t worth it, and to move on. A time of loving and serving your friends when you feel like you having nothing left to give because her husband is dying from cancer. A time of loving your mother in law because she spent the best years of her life raising her son, your husband, and he is amazing. A time to hug your Mom and Dad and feel so thankful for them.
As I look back I feel blessed. But looking forward I feel excited.
The girls each got a hold of the ipad and each took a self portrait…