Thursday, December 8, 2016

Healed & Whole

I have been quite honest with this whole separation / divorce / single mom situation that I found myself in. It's hard and emotionally draining at times but I have to be open and honest in my little corner of the internet. If not for anything else... For myself. So I can look back and see how I was broken, but the Lord fixed me. To see where what once left me in despair,  I am now rejoicing. I want to share experiences and learning moments so I can look back and see hope -- no matter my situation. That is my heart . So even when it's uncomfortable and I'm still processing I will share.

I am currently in that "processing" stage with wholeness.

The other day I was talking to a sweet single mom friend of mine about being healed and whole. And for the first time I realized that there is a difference between the two.

I was thinking that they were one in the same. That because I felt truly healed that it meant whole too.
Now I realize I was wrong. So so wrong.

I can talk about my ex husband without wanting to scream. I can carry on a conversation with him without trying to find a way to be hurtful. I can say her name without a glimmer of jealously. I can talk about their engagement without that twinge in my heart.  I no longer say "divorced" with sadness in my voice. I am able to talk about my boys living in two homes without crying. I sleep on a dry pillow every night and my showers are no longer a place where I run to release the tears. I see the Lord working in my life and I have so much hope.
I. Feel. Healed.

But a friendship that quickly turned into a compromise showed me how not whole I am.
{Eek. Here is the uncomfortable honesty}

I told myself that I would NOT run to anything besides Jesus during this situation.
But I found myself lowering my standards because of loneliness.
I took comfort in a friend ... When I should have taken comfort in God.
I spoke with him instead of praying.
I rebounded. I KNEW there was no future and yet I continued to engage in this friendship.

Now I need to be honest on this blog. The good,. The bad, and the ugly. And this situation and how I acted was not my shining moment. But it's real.

I tried numerous times to cut things off and yet it never stook. The conversation was empty words and I was doing a terrible job of representing Jesus to this guy.

After a few days of amazing prayer and an empowering conversation with my mentor I realized I do this pattern over and over again.
I'm in a good place with myself and with the Lord and then some boy comes along and - poof - I'm gone.
I have all of these Morals and all of these standards that I desire to live by but for whatever reason I compromise and forget all about it. Doing things and believing things I told myself I wouldn't do or believe. And then I get completely lost.

Not this time!

Once i opened my eyes to that reality -- I could then make a change.

I want to be WHOLE too.

Where my steadfast love is unwaivering no matter my circumstance or marital status.

I know I am His and that is enough.

I will wait this time.

I will wait.

I will be healed and whole.

So I am taking some time for me. Some Bible studies and getting involved in my church. Taking a break from dating and guys. Working in being whole and satisfied in Jesus.
And it actually feels great !

Honesty, new beginnings, and love,

Saturday, November 12, 2016

A fresh start reminder

The other day my littlest mister was sick so we stayed home from school and work & had a mommy son day.
Besides the coughing and runny nose we had a great day!

Ran errands.
Had Chic Fil A for breakfast.
And my favorite - walked the Christmas section of target.

As I gazed on all the beautiful Christmas items I realized this will be my first divorced Christmas. The twinge of pain and sadness quickly rushed over me as I remembered previous Christmases.

Decorating the tree our first Christmas together and how exciting it was. The Christmas bulb I used to announce to my ex that I was pregnant with our first son.  Our first Christmas with Seth and seeing him stare at all the wrapping paper.  The Christmas I was pregnant with our second son and how  anticipated the following year of joy from having 2 children. And last Christmas. Both of my boys unwrapping the presents we got for them.

All the emotions and memories flooded me like I had fallen off of a boat into the sea and I couldn't figure out which way was up or down.

But as I walked each aisle and saw more and more ornaments and wreaths and ribbons I realized something.
Even though I am not married.
Although it will just be me and my boys on Christmas and the decorating will be up to me.. I am starting fresh.
Much like winter breaks way to the loveliness of spring -- my mourning will break way to a fresh new dance.

So, next week I plan to get new ornaments. New decorations. New stockings.
And rejoice in this new life and new journey that I am on.

Ornaments, Christmas trees, and love - Monica

Sunday, July 3, 2016

an open letter to the next woman to marry my {ex} husband #graceovergrief

dear next woman who is going to my marry my ex-husband,

 I know hearing from me may or may not be awkward.
And it is possible that I may or may not know you personally but you are about to embark on a journey that I once walked.

And our paths are now intertwined because of my children.

You are going to be their stepmother.
You will influence them, help guide them, love them, and nurture them.

 You will love their father and because of that they will learn from you.

They will look to you for support.

My biggest prayer is that love will be in the home.

Things did not work out between their father and I but I pray that things go differently this time. That he has found someone he meshes with, someone to spend his life with, and that the honor and respect that the two of you share will be evident in the children's lives. That they will always feel safe. That they will always feel loved and put first.

I pray that you and I can get along. That the past stays in the past and it doesn't matter what happened. We can put the children first. We can look past hurt, confusions, and problems and we can see the children. And as long as we all work on focusing on them, that happiness will be present in both homes and families.

I wish you both happiness, love, and extreme joy. Because when those 3 things are the foundation of a family then everyone prospers.

Above all.... thank you. Thank you for choosing my children. When you decided to marry their father you chose them and I am just thankful that they have someone else who will love them completely.

xoxo, Monica

Saturday, June 25, 2016

why I don't want to become your friend right now #graceovergrief

This season is a weird one for me.
One that I never imagined having to experience.

single mom.


figuring things out.

I know that I need to surround myself with community and not be a shut in... but its so hard to "put myself out there."

I don't want to explain why my children are not with me that weekend.

I don't want them to notice my empty left hand.

I dread having to explain to them that I am going through a divorce or that I need to leave so that their father can pick them up.

I want them to see ME and not the sadness. To experience ME and not feel like they have to walk on eggshells. Its hard enough for my friends who I have known for years... let alone someone I am barely getting to know.

I am still new to this state. At least I still FEEL new. I have been living here in the Midwest for about 2.5 years and yet it still feels like I pulled up yesterday. I still use GPS everywhere I go. I still have to google places around town and my connections are few.

Nobody really knows what to see when someone is going through this type of grief. Especially when they don't know you that well.

So, people I encounter, I DO want to be your friend. I do. I want hang out and build relationship. I want to tell you how I am doing and what is going on. I want to grab coffee and watch our kids play at the park.
But this season, this journey is strange. I don't know how to navigate it.

Friendships are hard. And with a divorce that you never imagined happening... it can also be embarrassing.

I am a mess. And I wish I could show you happy-go-lucky-always-smiling-Monica.... but somedays its mascara-running-ben-and-jerry-eating-Monica and other days its so-angry-I-could-scream-Monica. And occasionally I can go from one Monica to the other in the instant. And its hard to figure my way around that. I don't want to scare you or overwhelm you.

So thank you for enduring. Thank you for pursuing. Thank you for praying. And thank you for reaching out even when I don't reach back. Know that it is not going unnoticed.

xoxo, Monica

Grace over Grief

A tan line where a ring used to be.
A broken promise where a vow used to be.
A tear where a smile used to be.
A shattered heart where a dream used to be.
- . - . - . -

But the sun will cover the empty space.
The Lord will renew promises and extend grace.
God will turn my mourning into dancing.
And I will love and dream even bigger then ever before.

xoxo, Monica

Monday, May 9, 2016

someday I won't cry #graceovergrief

I think I have thought about writing this post a hundred and fifty times but I just did not know how to go about it.

I didn't want to write the words because maybe if I don't say them -- it wouldn't be true.

but it is.

Whether I accept or  not, this is my new reality.

With a heavy heart I write this post as a single mom.

A title I never thought I would hold but here I am.

It doesn't matter HOW I got here, who's fault it is, who did what, or what happened. And I will probably never address it here, on my social media, or to people in general... because really... it does not matter in the long run.

You know what does matter? My attitude. My heart. My faith in the Lord. My healing. My relationship with my ex-husband as the father of my children. And mostly -- my sons.

You will not see me bashing their father. You will not see me cursing him or wishing ill on him. You will not see me keeping the boys from him or putting evil thoughts in their heads. You will not see me fighting with him. You will not see me holding on to bitterness. You will not see me filling the void with other things besides Jesus.

You might see me crying. You might see me mad. You might see me accepting this new life... only to be crying again a moment later. You might see me praying and trusting God. You might see me moving forward.

This is not what I wanted for me and my family. It is not what I planned for my life but I refuse to let this be the end of things.
I will fight for my happiness and healing. I will give my heart to the Lord daily so that He can pick up the broken pieces and put them back together again. I will give my children a good life. I will co parent to the best of my abilities. I will give myself grace over grieving. I will share my little moments of glimmer in this sea of darkness. I will not give in to bitterness.

It is well with my soul.

'You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.'
- Isaiah 26:3

xxoo, Monica

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Jingle Vox box review [Influenster]


Something really fun I got to do at the end of 2015 was receive my very first Influenster  box to review.

Influenster is a website that you go to read or write reviews on so many different products. You sign up, link up all your social media, and review products. They will give you an "impact score" that could qualify you to receive products FOR FREE in exchange for your honest review.
After you get the "voxbox", Influenster will have a bunch of tasks for you to do and that can qualify you to receive another box in the future.

I am all about sharing different products and I have bought different items mainly because I saw someone on youtube, blogs, or social media share them! So I was absolutely overjoyed when Influenster chose me for their Jingle VoxBox!

I did a more detailed review on my youtube channel.

So, what did I get?? Here is a list and my quick little review!

• Pure ice nail polish (silver star):
I loved this!!! The color was a little different then I normally choose bit still fun. It dried so so fast which I love and it still hasn't really chipped and I have had in on for about a week.

• NYC 24 hr. Eyeliner (dark brown): this was GORGEOUS and so so smooth! It stayed on all day and didn't smear.

• Kiss false eyelashes (posh) and black liquid adhesive: These eyelashes were so so natural looking and fairly easy to put on. I am sooo not an expert with false lashes and it did take a few times but if I was more experience I am sure it would have been easy. The adhesive is black so if you're not an expert, be careful because it might leave marks!

• Hallmark Itty Bitty (rapunzel): so so adorable! This little stuffed animal is so so soft and so cute!

• Lotus Biscoff Cookie: yummy!!! And the perfect crunch to go with coffee. It was the texture of like a gingerbread cookie.

• ore-ida tater tots: I haven't tried them yet! BUT I will be posting a fun little recipe for them next week when I make them for dinner.

• Cetaphil lotion: I really liked this lotion! It's a nice thick lotion that wasn't greasy. I used it on my face after a shower and my face was so soft.

- . - . - . -
And that's it!!!

So fun right!!!

You can click here to sign up for Influenster
And make sure to click here to watch the review video and such scribe to see more!

Have a great weekend!

Reviews and love, Monica