Simply

Just another manic Monday


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What I know…

I know that these last few months have been some of the most trying, full and enjoyable experiences of my life. Maybe it has something to do with how I’m viewing myself through this process. 

In November I thought the world would be better without me, or at least my pain and agony would cease to exist. What I know from that is, it would end for me but continue on through the people I would leave behind. During those dark moments you can’t see that. All you see is that you are alone, you are less than and that you are in pain and you would do ANYTHING to stop that pain. 

In December, I made the conscious decision to tell someone what was going on in my head. And what I mean is that I not only told my counselor, I talked with my doctor, I talked with my husband, I talked with my kiddos Godmom. I told friends and I put it on my blog. I asked for help and THAT was the single most hardest decision I have ever made. Things like that thrive in secrecy. I’m so glad I choose to reach out. I can’t say I loved the process. Because let’s be honest, I am an independent soul and I felt like I was being told to tell people my every move. I had weekly, sometimes daily check-ins. I had to give up things that made me feel safe but could also harm me. What I can say is there is power in support, positive thinking, and prayer. Thank you! 

In February I welcomed a baby niece and a few short weeks later I was given another niece. I love them as much as if they were my own.

One half of JZ

The other half of JZ

 JZ are absolutely perfect in every way. My heart was full. But… it also bought up that little thing that likes to pop up every now and then. Wanting another baby of my own. I know, I know. I joke a lot about not wanting to be pregnant again or going through labor again or even sleepless nights. But joking is also my coping mechanism. The urge to want to have a baby didn’t come around until after we had to give up the twins and their brother. In my heart I know what we did was best for us. Three was a LOT of work, at times I was overwhelmed. But it opened up in me the reminder that I couldn’t have another one of my own. The thought of going through what I did with Marie’s birth seriously gives me heart palpitations and anxiety. We almost lost her, I’m not sure I wouldn’t have that fear and stress in the back of my mind the whole pregnancy. And so because that was so traumatic, shortly after she was born I asked Ike to get a vasectomy. And he did. At the time it was the best decision and to be honest, I feel like it is still the best decision. But it doesn’t change the fact that my body aches to have a baby to carry and love and nurse. I’m slowly figuring out how to navigate those mindfields. For now I do it by getting some much needed snuggles from my beautiful baby nieces. I might or might not spoil them, but I can’t confirm that. I do want to add, we’ve had (Ike and I) that conversation. And we both agree that unless it’s meant to be (as in I get pregnant), we will not be taking in any infants or toddlers through foster care. Even though on occasion I ask him if he is absolutely positively for sure… What I know is that I can hold the sorrow of not having my own AND the joy of being an auntie twice over all together and still be happy. That is truly amazing to me. I’m learning and growing daily!

March came and went so fast, I’m still trying to figure out where it went. But what I do know is that I Love my husband more today than I did yesterday, or even ten years ago. And I say that because we just celebrated our 10th wedding anniversary. 

Happy 10th Anniversary


It was truly magical and everything we wanted. To be surrounded by friends and family. To have the same feel as our wedding and to be enjoyed by all. I’ll share pictures and more about that later. I also know that if I hadn’t learned even a little about making MYSELF happy, no one else would be able to. And so to be at this point is huge for me. We were close to being divorced on a couple of different occasions. The thing that helped us was taking each moment, hour, day, week, month at a time. 

April has been a time of slowin down, enjoying the quiet moments and spending time with family and friends. We celebrated the 5th birthday of our extra baby. 

Celebrating with classmates


Watching her be loved on and celebrated was absolutely adorable and so amazing. To see the pure look of joy and excitement in receiving was something I will cherish forever. To have something that is hers, and hers alone made her so incredibly happy. Im happy we got to see and experience that. What a gift! 

April has also been a full month, the group I was in has been cancelled because by the end I was the only one showing up. So I have to find and get comfortable in another group. I have a story about that too. Lol! We will be leaving next month on a six week roadtrip, yes I said six whole weeks! I am beyond excited. This trip will be epic. 

This is us filling out passport paperwork


It will include Canada, and the East Coast. With lots of time with friends and family along the way. Which leads me to add that our oldest daughter will be joining us in week two and stay with us through the end. I am excited for Ike and the kiddos. They get to spend some much wanted and needed time with an older sibling they didn’t get to grow up with. And I am lucky enough I get to watch all of it happen! 

For now that’s all I have, maybe I’ll finish those other stories and schedule them to post over the next few days. 

Namaste my Friends!

I

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Kind of silent share

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So we have a lot going on, I have a lot to catch you up on. But I feel bad that this site has kind of fallen to the side. I swear, it’s coming back! I love to post pictures with my commentary and for some reason I don’t have enough space to do that. Lol! So I’m working on updating and getting my other site up and running. I’ve actually had it for a few years now, just had it connected to this one. Because…. too much work. More on that later, for now. Enjoy this adorable photo of D-boy and mKK watching the girls play soccer this past weekend. 
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Happy Thursday Folks! Iiona


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The shoulder to cry on…

So, I have this friend who is in the last leg of getting a divorce. She has a ton of stuff going on on top of that and so we’ve been talking a lot lately. I guess I’m her ear, it can get heavy.

She was in an abusive relationship. She finally got out. And at some point our conversation last night ventured to her stating she felt she made a big mistake, she misses her best friend, life was great with him and that it couldn’t be any worse then what it was currently. I think I might have made a sound that was the combination of a choke and a chortle. I said did you just say what I think you just said? I instantly went into a spiel of what she possibly forgot when she was missing this dude. You know, mainly the ass whooping a he would hand out on a regular. Or the multiple times he had forced himself on her. Or the time CPS became involved in their lives. I said it rather harshly and with much judgement. Because I felt it was my duty to make her see the err in her thinking. Dammit! I had been talking her out of this relationship for over 4 years & she was finally out. But wanting to go back. I was HOT! 

Let me explain to you why I was so pissed… I had been in a relationship that was abusive before. I knew where she was coming from and I said the things I wished I had someone to say to me back then. But I wouldn’t have heard them back then. I thought I deserved what I got and so I dealt. Even as I flashback to those moments in time. I can feel what I felt and how I thought he loved me. Isn’t that how someone shows you they love you? For me growing up love looked like abuse and taking advantage. Love looked like him choking me and telling me I was a bad girl for what I had done earlier. Love looked like me begging for relief so that I could just breathe. Love looked like me being scared to go home but having nowhere else to go. Love smelled like desperation and sweat. Love felt like tears streaming down my face and constant pain. Love tasted like the blood I would swallow after biting my tongue or getting hit. Love was not kind, it was rough and hard. It didn’t care what I said or how hard I tried. It would look at me and laugh. It would tell me over and over that I was ugly & that no one would ever want me…

  

Love… But I couldn’t live my life at that time without it. It was what I knew to be true and consistent. Love never lied, I always knew how love felt, what love thought and how I turned love on. I knew without a doubt love would feed me, clothe me, and fuck me. These three things I knew for sure. The one time I got away from love, I ran back to him. Because I thought love was the only way to make it in this world. And that night I cried and screamed and begged love to leave me alone. He simply looked at me and told me I was his and he didn’t have to stop. And then he fucked me, beat me and went to bed for a good nights rest. I did all I could not to kill love. He deserved it and more. But I would be no match to him if he woke up. So I stayed in the bathroom, huddled in the shower and at first light I left love for good. I left Minnesota and returned to Wisconsin.  

My ego was crushed, my spirit torn but I was happy. I had survived. And as I thought about all of that while I talked to my friend. I realized I needed to be gentle with her. I needed to let her talk and listen to her. I needed to be still so that I may hear the message that I needed to hear. I also realized I needed to be kind and gentle with myself. I wasn’t mad at her, I was mad at myself. I was upset for allowing a man to another person treat me like garbage and being ok with it. 

I am not in that time or in that place. But I needed to go back there to know how to be here for my friend now. I hope she can hear what I’m saying or not saying. I want her to be able to talk without judgement. Because I was never allowed to talk with anyone. I didn’t have a friend to call and cry my eyes out to. I was my own shoulder. And sometimes I still feel like that. I am learning how to be ok with being strong for myself. Because if not me, then who? What I’m saying is more then just the basics. It’s the knowing. And what I know for sure is… I am always here. The voices in my head, they are always here. But people, people can be flaky. Myself included. And so I don’t hold my breath, I learn to breathe even when it feels as if my whole world is caving in.

And so tonight, be gentle, be kind, call that person whose been on your mind and let them know you are thinking of them. You never know, it could save someone’s life. 

And most of all, if you are reading this… I care deeply for you and wish you love and light!

Namaste


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About last night…

I feel like I should be telling you about all of the bottle we popped last night, instead of my first experience in a SA group therapy session. Yesterday right before I left to attend the session I had a small meltdown. It really isn’t funny, but it is freaking hilarious. I mean it was small and quick and once I moved past it, it was fine. So as I was getting Mouse, daddy and Marie ready for volleyball practice I needed to change into some less restrictive clothing. And as I looked in the mirror and fixed my hair, I literally said… “I can’t wear this to a SA group! What the heck am I thinking? Oh, my gosh this is so stupid. Why am I freaking out over wanting to be comfortable? I can’t handle this right now, I’m leaving!” And that was that. So yeah, I’m laughing at that small meltdown.

I wished Mouse goodluck and told her to talk daddy into coaching the team, he had already told me he was just a transporter. I figured once he got to the gym he would change his mind. I hopped in my car and sped off down the road to the highway. I needed to talk to someone and so I called my sister. I call her that, but she is really a person I’ve known for over 16 years. We met when we started dancing in a group together. We clicked instantly and she went from being my best fren to my sister. She is family, I’m not sure I have friends and that is where I was at when I said a few days ago that I didn’t know how to be a friend. Because we are either acquaintances or we’re family, I don’t have an in-between and I’m learning to work on the in-between. I need in-between, not everyone is meant to be in your family and that’s fine. It takes a village to raise a child and I like a solid village.

Anyways, she is currently having some personal issues so we talked about that and how she was feeling about it. I chuckle because I said something to her and her response was, “Did you and Re-Re talk today? Because both of y’all said the EXACT same thing word for word.” I told her no, it just meant that was the message you needed to hear and I’m just repeating it. We talked some more, I mean, I had at least a 45 minute drive, so I had enough time to chat. We started talking about how I liked Texas and when I would be back home. Being honest I told her, I love where we live. I wouldn’t change it for the world, this is what we needed. But I miss having my best friend down the street and my support system 10 minutes away, its hard and somedays I am ok with it and other days I hate it. She is so funny because she asked me have I found a best friend to replace her and I responded with a, “Now BITCH! You know your ass can never be replaced.” and we chuckled. We then got into conversation about what the group session would look like and I told her I was actually really nervous and I wished that she was here with me so that we could go together. I could have truly taken her and the both of us would have been able to start the healing process. What connected us was our past, we had both been sexually, mentally and physically abused. Our conversation energized me and I felt more then prepared to go into this group sure of myself and my intentions.

We hung up on a laugh and I took a deep breath. Told myself that my main goal was to breath. Everything else would come. I walked into the building and waited for the group to start. As I sat there in those chairs waiting for 6:30pm to arrive, I talked to myself, I tried reading a book and when that didn’t happen I resorted to play a couple games of candy crush. LOL! Hey, in a pinch it is the best attention grabber. 6:29pm rolled around and my head started hurting, I took a deep breath, a long drink of water and told myself to figure it out. 6:33pm rolled around the lady who ran the group came out and grabbed everyone. One by one myself and 3 other ladies stood up and walked over towards her. She stopped and introduced herself to me, I was the new one in the group. I found out later a couple of the ladies had been attending the sessions for a while. We filed in the back, one behind the other like we were in a line going to the principals office. Or maybe that was just my perception… By this time my chest is tight and my heart feels like it’s about to fall out of my chest.

We walk into the room, find a comfortable chair and settle ourselves. Rules are given because I’m new to the group. Just as we are about to say who we were and how we were another lady walks into the room. It’s my turn and I say, “Hi, I’m Iiona. This is my first session and I’m unsure. This is different and I’m just… you know, nervous…” Every head nodded in agreement and I was told I took the first step and that’s the most important. I think I visibly relaxed after that. Well at least for another 10 minutes and then everything else kind of gets blurry. I just know I spent a good portion of time breathing, focusing on deliberate deep breaths that slowed my breathing down. Because I felt myself hyperventilating on a few occasions.

 

What I can say is that at one point I felt like I was being stripped down bare naked and forced to deal with the consequences of not having clothes. I remember the clock was exceptionally loud, each tick was like a small bomb going off. I remember holding back tears, I remember feeling as if I was being confined in a small room that was sound proof so my ears popped and everything was muffled. I think at one point I even thought about leaving, but I stayed. I argued with myself a lot, telling myself that I was here in 2016. Sitting in a room with 5 other women and that the flashes I happened to be seeing wasn’t happening at that moment. At one point the lady running the meeting seen that I was about to say something and stopped myself. And she said, “Iiona, did you have something you wanted to add to that?” I’m sure I looked like a deer caught in the headlights of a car and I said, “Shit you caught that huh? Yes….” After that I focused on keeping the parts of my body that kept tensing up to relax. I guess yoga is coming in handy to help with things like this. Anyways, the session was ended with a great tradition and we left. I still felt like my ears were clouded and things were slightly blurry. But because I still had a 45 minutes drive back home I focused on staying present to the moment. I’m not sure how I managed it, but I did. I just know when I finally made it home I was so relieved. I was beyond exhausted and I kept getting flashes of things that I had forgotten about and I was just overwhelmed.

I came in, ate something quick and told everyone goodnight. My head was pounding, my vision was blurry and I was just exhausted. I had forgotten I had told my sister that I would call her after the meeting so that she knew I was ok and made it home. As I crawled into bed, my phone rang and I swore. I was like REALLY! I can’t, but I picked it up and she said I just wanted to make sure you made it home and that you’re good. I told her Thanks, I’m tired and I have a headache but yes I am good and I would call her tomorrow. I laid in bed and begged for my dreams to be free of any more flashbacks and woke up this morning around 4am in tears.


My heart hurt and I couldn’t stop crying. At some point I remember saying I don’t understand why I have to keep reliving this stupid shit. I can’t handle this today, I just want to be free of it all. I finally got up and hopped in the shower. Considered staying up but really needed more sleep, so I slept off and on until 6:30am. My intention for the day was to stay in my pjs and sleep. But I really wanted to go to yoga as well, so I quickly got dressed, grabbed my mat and ran out the door for the 8:30am class. Let me tell you, I was exactly where I was supposed to be this morning. If I ever doubted myself, today, today was the day that I couldn’t quietly tip toe past it. Every thought and feeling that I felt was exhaled as I pushed my body into positions that I’ve never attempted before. Holding them longer then I should have been able to, letting go of the tension and the anger and just realizing that I can do anything I put my mind to. I swear the yoga teacher was there speaking directly to me and I couldn’t move. By the end of the hour I am positive I had cried through several positions. I am sure glad most people practice with eyes closed and the only one who could see the tears streaming down my face was the instructor.

The flashes haven’t stopped, some extremely intense. But today I am breathing through it all. Tomorrow could look different, hell even tonight. I just know right now in this moment, I am ok.

 

“You are the designer of your destiny. You are the author, you write the story, the pen is in your hand, and the outcome is whatever you choose.”- Abraham Hicks


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Friendships 

I’m literally laying in bed listening to the sounds of our house sleep. Wishing I was asleep as well, but being completely wide awake. The cruel cruel world of insomnia. I’m sure I will pay the price tomorrow. As for now, I sit and contemplate life. My life to be exact. I’m not sad, just in a stage of contemplation. Sometimes the things I analyze aren’t all that happy, but it takes getting through those things to reach the other side of happiness. If I can’t find happiness within myself, no one else will be able to offer that to me. I’m learning to be happy from within first.

Lately, my mind has been static on friendships. Those I have lost, those that are there and those that I perceive to be there. Friendships are tricky. They are or can be an emotional mind field. For instance, I had a friend who died while we were both in high school. I was devastated. I couldn’t comprehend why someone so special could die so young. For me, she made an even bigger impact on me. 

Another instance, I had a bestest best friend tell me I was too much for her and that she needed a break from me forever. We spent so much time together, she was my ying to her yang. Virtually inseparable. I was crushed. Life moved forward without me for awhile. Looking back at it, I was in the midst of a severe depression stage and I just needed someone to tell me I wasn’t crazy. It wasn’t her, I eventually got that answered and I slowly started treading water again. But it was never the same after that. 

She was the proverbial straw that broke the camels back. I still love her, she was a huge part of my survival into high school years. When we get together it’s as if no time has passed. I truly miss those types of friendships. It’s hard to come across those now. 

What I have realized is that because of that first deep hurt from my friend I don’t trust nor believe in those types of friendships anymore. I’m good at playing lip service, but let’s be honest. Your first instinct is to protect yourself from being hurt like that again. I have many layers, it took years to build them. They have worked. And then two people come along and start knocking cracks into the walls. And here I sit contemplating how to seal those cracks back up. Not because I don’t want true friendship, but because I no longer know what it means. My definition is so skewed I don’t know which way is up. I panic when people start to see the real me. Only I can see her, she is not for anyone else’s eyes. It throws me off my game, I’m forced to play it off or say take it or leave it. This is me. And typically people say leave it when faced with a choice. 

And so I build another wall, but this one thicker then the last. Until I don’t even recognize myself when she comes out to play. And so here I sit, learning to like my true self again. Learning to recognize her and what makes her tick.

Anyways, I’m going to force myself to go to bed before I reach my point of no return.  

 
And with that, I bid you goodnight!