An Open Letter to: My Kids

There are a few things I hope you learn just through the example I set for you. Here are a few of them for you to remember.

Learn how to forgive. First, forgive yourself. Then work on forgiving absolutely every person you hold a grudge against. Life is so much easier when you let go of these burdens that are not yours. God is faithful and just, let Him do His job.

Learn and live The Serenity Prayer. Allows it to bring you comfort and inner peace.

Love completely. Yes, you will get your heart broken; cherish the lessons and love again.

Find your passion and don’t let anybody keep you from it. You will wake up smiling everyday when you are living and following your dreams.

Never, EVER have I questioned your love for me. Part of being a kid  is hating your parents for something eventually. If you were never angry at me I did it wrong. We’re good-I promise.

There will come a time when I leave this temporary home and go to dwell in the house of the Lord.

Don’t define my life by the moment of my death. Instead remember the life I lived. Remember my big mouth and loud laugh, my ‘no cars in the living room’ rule, my love for God, my quest for a full life, my lessons on budgeting, my dislike for cleaning,  my terrible driving, the way we acted silly in public, the way I loved to sing, and most importantly…never forget…there are no witnesses in the van!!

You are stronger than you know and smarter than you believe.

I love you more than pork chops, rainbows, Nutella, earth worms, sleeping in, morning coffee, vacations, laughter, bubble baths, books, fishing, snowmobiling, s’mores, Little Debbie snacks, and hockey.

—love you more.

Love & Hugs,
Mom

P.S. Tag, you’re it!!

An Open Letter to My Daughter

I don’t even know how to explain this one…not here, in words; not to my heart. It’s just not an option.

Oh hell my heart…

Dear Miss Bug,

If I didn’t believe in my heart of hearts that you are going to be okay, eventually…this would kill me. You are young. You can get through this…you WILL get through this.

PTSD, Major Depressive Disorder; they are mere labels placed upon you to enable the medical community to care best for you. They do NOT define you. YOU are a smart young woman.

Please allow those around you to support your good decisions and to question your questionable ones. That’s our job. Do not push away those who care. The negative ones who cause or feed drama just to watch the aftermath; ignore them. They are not worth your time, your energy, your sanity, your inner peace.

Understand that the rules in place now that I am enforcing are MUCH harder to enforce than I make it look. While I tell you that you cannot stay with me, it is with a heavy heart. My heart aches to watch you walk the path you are on.

I know how you feel kid…twenty years ago, I was you. I was in almost the exact same shoes. The difference is, I allowed myself to make decisions out of desperation and fear.

You deserve better. Do not allow fear to prevent you from doing what you know is right. Being alone sucks, being with somebody who leaves you lonely…even worse.

Stand up to your fears…what is the WORST case scenario…seriously. Figure those things out. Figure them out on your terms.

I love you more than Nutella, Skittles, playoff hockey, and Little Debbie Swiss Rolls combined…seriously.

As I told you in the message I sent you last night, “I do love you Miss B and that will never change. I’ve been where you are. SLOW DOWN. I know, easier said than done when you are hurting and lonely and only want somebody to love you…that is not love though. You need to love God first and then yourself. You need to turn your will and your life over to the care and control of God and trust that He knows what He is doing.”

Spend your time in prayer little girl. Study the Bible, allow it to bring you peace. If you need guidance finding scriptures that fit your situation call Pastor Jeff. Call your photographer (she’s awesome at this kind of thing). Pray for peace, courage, and wisdom.

TAKE NOTES. When you find a piece of scripture that speaks to your heart, write it down. Carry it with you, in your phone, your iPod, your damn pocket on a napkin of Bubba and Bum’s snot if you have to.

Spend time in thoughtful prayer. Pray for yourself, for your family, for your friends, for your enemies. Your brothers both love it when people encourage their faith; pray with them. Teach them how to talk to God, how to walk with God.

FORGIVE those who have hurt you. Holding on to the pain is not hurting them, it is only holding you back, weighing you down. Remember, when you choose to forgive you are not granting them freedom, you are reclaiming yours.

Never forget that you are worth the effort people put in to helping you to live a happy and full life. You are young. If people are willing to put the effort out, ALLOW THEM. Do not push away those are trying to and can help. Although the easy path is filled with people who are more than willing to lead you astray, don’t take the short cut. Trust me, it’s not worth it.

You’ve seen the hard work that goes in to walking the high road…guess what, the scenery over here is amazing. The sites, the sounds, the experiences; you cannot get this on Easy Street.

Lean on me, my girl. That’s what my shoulders are here for. I’m a big girl, I can take it. I can also hold you accountable…and will continue to do so; and will do it out of love.

Take Care Miss Bug, I’m right here.

Love,

Mom

An Open Letter to My Heart

Dear Heart,

I see you struggling with so much lately. Thankfully I am able to calm you down most of the time; don’t think I don’t notice when you are overcome with grief and fear. When you are feeling alone and wondering when things will settle down, I’m right here.

I know you feel as though I’ve abandoned you when you are in those dark places. The truth is, I allow you to feel that way so you can recognize all the great things in your life. I’ve let you feel lost so that you can know when you are found.

Think about it. How else were you ever going to discover how truly amazing you are? How else were the boys going to learn the true meaning of love? Some of these things can only be learned through adversity.

You took that adversity, and you owned it. You never let it own you. You stayed strong even when you wanted to give in. You kept beating. You knew the best was yet to come. You still know that.

Just know that I’ve got your six…we’ll get through this together. Between the two of us we’ll get through this. One challenge at a time, one triumph at a time, one set back at a time.

With love,

Brain

An Open Letter to the Judge

Your Honor,

I understand you are a busy man; I can not even begin to know the hours you put in to your job. I am asking only for a few minutes of your time. To be able to trust you to do what is in the best interests of the children I need to know you have heard me.

Mr. Ex has, for all intents and purposes, abandoned the boys on my door step for an undetermined amount of time. This is the same man who was asking you to grant him sole custody and to not grant me even supervised visitation because he had such great concerns regarding my mental instability and their safety in my care.

Since convincing you that he is, at least temporarily, the best parent for these kids they spend more hours between daycare and babysitters than with him. I understand this is his right to parent as he sees appropriate, I only point this out as I am concerned that he is not addressing their social/emotional needs at a time when they need the most love and guidance. He is also not addressing the medical needs of Boy1. When I was ordered out of the marital home I told him that Boy1 needed to be seen by an orthopedic specialist for a hip condition. He has not yet made that appointment. This needs to be addressed sooner rather than later for the best possible outcome for Boy1.

As far as I know, Mr. Ex has not yet completed the required Parent’s Forever class. It is my sincere hope, that once completed he will better understand the needs of the children and work towards meeting them.

As stated earlier, the boys have now been in my sole care since June 2 and Mr Ex continues to extend the length of his absence. They have adjusted well and are not showing any regression at this time. We have sent cards and such to dad while he is away.

We are attending church on a weekly basis and they are forming a bond with our Pastor and other members of the congregation. Boy1 attended Safety Camp put on by the City Parks and Recreation Department and both boys are signing up today for the summer reading program at the local library.

With the short notice I was afforded, the children are spending their days with my girlfriend who used to be a licensed child care provider. She has three children of her own and her family is like family to us. Her father-in-law even took one of her boys and Boy1 fishing this week…both my boys refer to him as Grandpa. Daycare spots are a premium in this town.

In addition to the above concerns, I would like to make you aware that due to the fact that the boys do not technically live with me, I am not eligible for any county/state/federal assistance. I am fulltime employed, but making 20% above minimum wage and having to start from scratch in a new home has not been easy.

I respectfully request that you reconsider your earlier decision granting Mr. Ex temporary custody. These children need and deserve the stability of a schedule and their needs being met by a parent as opposed to various caregivers. I am only asking you to revisit the custody issue at this time. Mr. Ex. can continue to live in the marital home until that issue is addressed at trial in September.

I also request that you order a child custody evaluation as well as parenting capacity studies for both parties. It is my opinion that this is the only way to ensure the needs of the children are met effectively.

Thank you Your Honor.

Sincerely,

B1 and B2’s Mom

An Open Letter To…The Man of My Dreams

Dear The Man of My Dreams;

I know one day we will meet. Although I’m hoping it will be fireworks and love at first sight, I’m much too afraid of how that ends to even let myself believe that to be possible anymore. Please, if you see the fireworks, stop pointing at them, stop trying to show me how wonderful they are, stop talking about them…I’ll acknowledge them when I can no longer ignore them. Please be patient.

I look forward to building a relationship with you…and as sure as I want that to happen; I am also scared silly. I had forever once and it didn’t end well. I want forever again. I am not interested in serial dating…I don’t have the time, energy, or courage to even attempt that. If you aren’t interested in a long term commitment, please don’t waste my time.

I have kids, they mean the world to me. I would give my life for them without a second of hesitation. I don’t know if you have kids or not; if you can’t understand this we are not a match. I don’t know when you will actually get to meet my kids, but you will definitely hear about them often. You will come to know them long before you meet them, I will openly share every aspect of our lives with you…when you finally meet them, you will have no doubts who is who and you will giggle at the accuracy of my descriptions of their personalities. You will love them long before you meet them.

You will also become a co-parent in their lives. This is the only way to give kids the stability they need to become independent adults. You will have to deal with their father on a respectful level at all costs. I will not tolerate you belittling or vilifying him in any manner to the boys. As much as he sets himself, it is not for us to judge…he will pay the price for his sins in God’s time.

Speaking of God, it is my sincere hope that you attend church services with us regularly. My faith brings me such comfort that I would like to share that with you.

I’m am not a financial wizard by any stretch of the imagination, but I like to live within my means. If you have not figured out how to do this in your own life yet, we are not compatible. I have no problem with delayed gratification when it comes to buying things or doing things. I have no problem being a homebody to save up for an amazing trip or wanted item. If you have the resources to pay for those things, great. If not, what sacrifices are you willing to make to your lifestyle or hobbies to attain that which you want? If you have more ‘means’ than I do, we compromise…we compromise about a lot of things. That’s what makes us work…we grow as a pair.

Your family, is close knit and crazy…love them dearly but damn you drive each other insane, and you all know it. The relationships are healthy and have appropriate boundaries. They are okay with, and don’t try to guilt trip you into spending every holiday with them. I’d really like to be able to make some of our own traditions as well as fitting in time with both of our families. It is my hope, and expectation, that your family will embrace my kids as you do.

I know this is a very basic outline…we can fill it in as we go. Like writing a novel, start with a basic outline, fill in the details as you go.