Friday, July 17, 2015
Tuesday, July 14, 2015
Monday, July 13, 2015
Irwin: Yo Janet (although my name is Janice)
Me: What Irvin?
Irwin: I was wondering
Me: I hope thinking doesn’t hurt your head.
Irwin:Oh haha btw (by the way) you look nice today.
Me: You haven’t seen me today!
Irwin:Yeah, but I bet you dressed good today.
Me:What are you wanting?
Irwin:Can I not have a conversation without me wanting something?
Me:Not a conversation telling me I look good. Come on son spit it out, what are you working up the nerve to ask?
Irwin:Well, you see, Rico wanted to know if I could hang out with him today, youno what I’m saying homie?
Me:Isn’t Dad home? Are all your chores completed, your room clean, are you wearing clean underwear?
Irwin: We are about to clean the kitchen and I’m washing my sheets. Clean underwear, Get out of here!
Me:If that stuff is done then I don’t care if Dad doesn’t care. He may even take you over to Rico’s if you ask him to do so.
Irwin: Ight thanks homie G.
Who is Homie G? And why is my son texting me when he has a perfectly good parent at home? I shared this conversation with my coworkers and was told it was because I’m the easier mark for Irwin to get what he was wanting. That’s probably true too! Pamela is a daddy’s girl so she goes to David while Irwin comes to me. However, if I call him a “Momma’s Boy” he seems to think that’s a bad thing as if it makes him a powder puff or something. Why is that?
I raised four older sons and they didn’t seem to mind being Momma’s Boys. What is it about this generation that they don’t want to admit the obvious? From the beginning of time there has always been a special kind of bond between moms and sons. My sister and I would always ask our Dad if we wanted to do stuff. We felt he would be more likely to say yes than our mother would have. However, our brothers were just the opposite. We were definitely Daddy’s Girls and we didn’t mind that at all.
There was no question that Mom and Dad loved us equally. They loved both their sons just as much as they loved their daughters. The same way goes for me and David. We love our children. Although there are times as a parent when your children, at home or grown, do things that doesn’t make you like their behaviors very much. As parents we tend to think people are judging us by the behaviors of our children, even as adults and living away from home for many years. Why is that?
I loved raising sons when my three older sons were little. I remember sitting in my hospital bed after I gave birth to Austen on Super Bowl Sunday after 16 hours of hard labor. We didn’t have epidurals then and so labor was wrought with severe pain. It wasn’t like it is today where you get a shot and actually feel no pain during the delivery. I remember holding him in my arms and realizing that I was now responsible for a human life. I was his only source of food, shelter, clothing, and emotional support. The very life of this little guy rested upon my shoulders. Then along came his brother, Jorden just two years later. Another two years passed and here came sweet Dalten. Two years after Dalten’s arrival Gordo showed up. These boys were my world!
As a single Mom I saw my boys hit high school. I remembered the old ladies saying, “enjoy them now honey because they’ll be grown before you know it!” And sure enough…it happened. One day Dalten looked at me and said, “Mom, what are you going to do when you are all by yourself? Ouch! That hit me like a ton of bricks.
First Austen went off to Oklahoma State University and I tried to remember that to give him wings I had to release him. I did give him some advice however, and told him that “Mom’s don’t need to know everything!” Jorden graduated and joined the Air Force and was stationed in Guam, which seemed like a million miles away from Oklahoma. At one point I was forced to not see him for 18 LONG months. Being a military mom wasn’t something I relished because I was not used to being away from my son. But, he was teaching me something that I would have to learn well because Dalten and Gordo both joined the military and there have been several deployments since my experience with Jorden.
I’ll also never forget Jorden coming into my office when I was a Paralegal at Stephen P. Gray & Associates. It was an afternoon and I thought perhaps he was coming to beg lunch from mom. However, that was not what was on his agenda. This handsome blonde young man looked at me through those gorgeous baby blue eyes and said, “Mom, I joined the Air Force!” My answer was a question, “Why the Air Force?” My son gave me an answer I really wasn’t expecting but was not at all surprised to hear, “because the Air Force has better looking women!”
manila envelope one day. I opened it and it was a bib that said, “Grandma’s Girl.” Abileyne has since taught me to be a grandma, with Ashlyn to follow, then Sophie, and now Jasmine and JJ. Being a grandma is the greatest gift God bestows, I really believe that. I also think that if you truly love your child, and you have parents that aren’t drug addicts or criminals, you would be very selfish to not allow that child to have a relationship with a grandparent. Grandparents are God’s way of giving us extra special treatment while still knowing there is a place where we have to learn to behave and do our chores (Mom & Dad’s house).
Our adult children sometimes disappoint us with the decisions or choices they make in life. Sometimes their choice of inappropriate language, tattoos, piercings, and behaviors land far from the tree known as the parent.However, just because they make choices that are different from ours, or choices we wouldn’t make, it doesn’t mean we don’t love them, after all, we spent those years when we were young and energetic and poured our time and hearts into raising them. I love my children, everyone of them and I’m glad God allowed me to raise them, even if the child didn’t always appreciate the sacrifices and hardships we faced along the way.
I have also noticed that sometimes our adult children like to blame Mom for self-created issues. For instance, "mom is always in my business" yet they bring their problems to mom to help fix. Don't take mom your issues if you're going to go right back to that that caused the problem, then blame your mother. Also, don't blame mom for your inappropriate behaviors or habits which are NOT what she taught you. Those behaviors were your own doing, not mom's doing. And lastly, when you're an adult, stop telling mom she is no longer your mom because she spends what little time she has among a lot of people and responsibilities. Everything is NOT about one person in this life.
Moms also deserve happiness, tranquility, and respect because she raised you to be a good human being. Try to remember you are here because of her.
Sunday, July 12, 2015
As many of my readers know, I have had some pretty serious medical issues over the last several years. I fought a battle with cancer several times and cancer was definitely out to get me. But....CANCER DIDN'T WIN! In addition, I also found out that my esophagus was in pretty bad shape and if something drastic wasn't done I would be looking as esophageal cancer within the next 1-3 years. In addition, being extremely overweight added additional issues to my health such as Sleep Apnea, Diabetes, and high blood pressure. Along with Diabetes I also suffered greatly from Neuropathy. My body hurt so bad at night that I barely slept. Not sleeping then affected me during the day. It became misery on top of misery.
I had often thought about getting lap band surgery and in January 2013 I began seeing a doctor to do so. However, my insurance required I go to the doctor every month for a year. It became a drugery and required I take time off work to do so. In addition, there would be times when I'd have a 1 p.m. appointment and still be in the waiting room waiting to see this doctor at 3:30 p.m. Once, I was there past 5:00 p.m. I realize doctors can get busy, but this was not a surgeon nor anyone that did rounds at the hospital. Why on earth should I wait for this long? If doctors had to pay for our time the way we have to pay for theirs, they would keep to their schedules. I realize that things come up or happen medically. However, waiting hour after hour is too much!
I had decided not to have the lap band after a surgical nurse told me that some people have problems with the band, or end up having a different procedure later because the weight loss was not very significant for them. I actually decided I just didn't have the time available off work to do any surgery. Then entered the fabulous Sharyn Roberts!
I met Sharyn Roberts on a cruise in 2013. We had a big adoption ceremony for Pamela & Irwin and then took them on a "familymoon" cruise. We ended up meeting a group of people on the same cruise from all over the world. Sharyn Roberts from Melbourne, Australia, was one of those wonderful people. Sharyn is a gorgous lady from the other side of the world. She was petite and had such a glow about her. As a result of this cruise we started communicating and became like family. This group of people just had that fit together. The bond has grown into something absolutely heavenly! In fact, I don't believe I could have kept my head up during my last round of cancer treatments had it not been for my NCL Family. They are so precious to me.
We met Sharyn & Andrew Roberts, along with Warren & Linda Smith for a second cruise in 2014. However, we didn't take the kids on this cruise so we could have adult time so desperately needed. On this cruise while I was getting a wonderful, and cheap massage, at a glorious beach side resort, David was sitting at our table with Sharyn, Andrew, Linda & Warren. While I was enjoying my massage, Sharyn shared a photo of herself prior to her having had weight loss surgery. When I got back to the table David looked at me and said, "Sharyn showed us a photo that will change your life." Wow, looking at the photo she was sharing was a huge contrast from the small, gorgeous blonde standing under that shelter on the beach in Honduras. Sharyn sharing her past opened up the window to my future in a way nobody could even imagine.
When we arrived back home from that cruise I was determined to have the surgery. Once I saw the surgeon and some pre-surgery testing was done, I learned that if I didn't do something drastic, and QUICKLY, I wouldn't be around to see my youngest Granddaughter, Sophie, begin Kindergarten in a couple of years. I have adorable grandchildren, and two teens still at home, and the surgeon made it quite clear that I was standing on the edge of life. I could do nothing and go over the cliff or I could bite the bullet and live a life that I would find had much more meaning and happiness. Not to say I was unhappy but just incredible unhealthy.
The type of surgery I was going to have was now the question. Sharyn had the lap band, but there were also other types. The Roux-N-Y is what I chose because I'm one of those people who has little or no will power. As such, I knew I needed to have consequences if I pushed the envelope too far. The recovery time was the same for each of these surgeries so I went for the Cadillac of weight loss surgeries. As it turned out, someone from the office donated me all the extra paid time off I needed beyond what I already had, which was a huge blessing. I took off work on February 17, 2015 to get things together for what I felt would be a difficult recovery. Surgery was on February 18, 2015, and for some reason I was truly afraid I was going to die during surgery. I was only off for 9 days, then returned for half days on March 1, 2015.
People tend to think that weigh-loss surgery is an easy out. Don't be so quick to make those judgments! Its the hardest work I've ever done. It is very difficult to cook for a family when the very food you're cooking may not be among the items you can consume. My husband, David, and youngest son, Irwin loves Fettuccine Alfredo. However, pasta is not immediately back on the menu for me. It takes months before someone having had this surgery can consume such things. I learned to endure Tuna, Salmon, Basa, low-fat Cottage Cheese, Refried Beans, and protein shakes.
In addition, as a mom we can't just remove everything we can't eat from our lives because our children and/or spouse still wants those items. It is darn difficult to drive up to Sonic and watch as your teens and spouse devour Oreo Cookie Blasts. I have removed a lot of junk food from my pantry. Instead, when I get the kids some cookies I make them take them to their room, or get them out of my sight. I may have had the surgery but I still have the will-power issues. Surgery is not a cure-all from our learned behaviors.
Today is a day of celebration in our home. In five months I have gone from a size 5X to a size 16. I hit my first BIG goal today, 100 pounds lost. It didn't come easily either. I workout every day except Sunday. When I hit the wall a few weeks ago, and the weight loss stopped, I called on my cousin, Danna Spohn, That girl should truly be a fitness trainer. She has helped me so much to get over the hurdles that have stood between me and the scales.
It just amazes me the people God puts into our lives from places we don't really think about. I've had several people become very important in my journey. Having lost 100 pounds brings with it other issues, such as sagging skin, LOTS OF SAGGING!! My daughter-in-law, Shelby, has helped me greatly with that issue. She advised that I needed to exfoliate my skin then apply a moisturizer so the skin could get back some of its elasticity. I did so and it has made a difference. Then, I began researching skin tightening. I came across a video of a plastic surgeon in Beverly Hills who has developed such a cream. I've also received advise and help from sweet Shelby with my hair. When the body experiences these changes hair loss can become a problem. Shelby has been extremely helpful. Those of you in the Tulsa area; Shelby can help you look beautiful at Ihloff Salon & Day Spa. Call for an appointment and you won't be sorry you did. You'll feel amazing!
I watched the video twice. It really got my attention and the way this plastic surgeon educated during the video kept my attention. The cream costs $75 a 1.69 ounce jar. Wow! I had just gone through Fat Girl Thin at a cost of around $35 and it didn't last me two weeks. Now, this jar was even smaller and at twice the cost. Would it be worth it? If you could see all the sagging of my body, you would understand that this is a very important issue to someone who has lost a lot of weight in such a short time.
Monday, July 6, 2015
Summertime can be difficult with teens wanting to stay up late. However, they still need to understand that just because they don’t have to be up for school, parents still have to be up for work. Therefore, allowing them to stay up all night is rather ridiculous and truly is not what kids at any age need to be doing. Sleep is important and that means sleep for everyone in the household.
Sometimes I think other parents have lost their minds. They allow their children to stay up all night and then sleep away the next day. Seriously, these are the types of parents that make it darn difficult for those of us who are seriously trying to be parents, instead of merely our children’s friends. In what world is it in a child’s best interest to have a normal sleep pattern completely reversed?
In addition to the sleep pattern problem, there’s also the issue of common courtesy. Mom and Dad work so why then is it okay for kids to stay up all night disturbing sleep for them? Allowing a child to disregard common courtesy to others is not doing your child any favors. This has become a generation of entitled teens and it is because parents just don’t teach their children common courtesy or respectful behaviors.
We allowed a girl to live with us from the time she was 18 years of age, through her last full year of high school, and until she was nineteen and a half. Her step-father had allegedly raped her and according to the young lady her Mother absolutely refused to believe it. A fact was that this same mom had began a relationship with a man she herself accused of raping her while still married to this girl's dad. It was never really clear if the allegation was truth or just a lie to cover up moms infidelity. But, either way, the daughter swore, and still does to this day, that step dad had sexually abused her, and therefore she spewed hateful, vulgar statements about her mother. We had to constantly be addressing her foul language and the respect issue. She didn't care how she spoke in front of other people or children either. It was horrible and embarrassing behavior.
This girl constantly disrupted our sleep on work nights. Her behavior was unreasonable and she had no manners or courtesy whatsoever. We would even have to tell her not to text our cellphones after 10 pm and she NEVER respected that request at all. Furthermore, she didn’t care that we’d ask and ask her to please be respectful of what others in the household had to do the next day. She was truly a product of how momma had raised her. This child was allowed, and encouraged, to speak to the other parent (dad) in a disrespectful manner. In fact, the more disrespectful the more Momma liked it! It was as if she’d get off on it. The child was even told “that’s my girl, that’s my good girl!” This parent however didn’t seem to get it that once a child is encouraged to talk about, or speak to a parent in that manner, it is just a matter of time until both parents, and anyone else that comes into contact with that child, is shown little or no respect whatsoever. Then, the child grows up into an adult that nobody can stand for very long. Their relationships end abruptly or are rarely long term. But, that’s what this child was taught and therefore that’s what everyone now has to deal with or be forced to stir clear of the young, disrespectful, foul mouthed, young adult.
While this girl could sleep until noon, and did, the rest of us had to be up at the crack of dawn. When we’d address the issue we were spoken to as if we were just completely unreasonable. We set the rules of our house and made sure they were clear. Even doing so did not phase this out of control teen. She wanted what she wanted and that was THAT! We would explain over and again why there were bedtimes that needed to be kept and the common courtesy to be quiet at night allowing other people, especially those with sleep disorders, to get some rest without being awakened. Meanwhile, the adults would drag themselves through the day just exhausted from the teen antic of the prior night. Being 18 doesn't mean someone has matured. In this case she was old enough to take care of herself but was raised to feel so entitled she would simply not show up for a job and then it was all the employers fault. I saw this girl blow through MANY jobs in this manner as well as beauty school after high school. I've never known anyone before that's been thrown out of beauty school!
Once school was out for the summer for Irwin and Pamela, we again found ourselves addressing this issue. Their reasoning is that “everyone does it” or “school is out for the summer” or “we are on summer vacation.” SO WHAT!! The adults are NOT on summer vacation and respectful behavior, common courtesy, is expected at ALL TIMES. I don’t care what other people allow in their homes, this is our home and WE make the rules here. I don’t care what other kids do or don’t do, I do care what MY kids do. It’s just that simple.
Now that we’re on the subject lets also discuss children calling or texting into other people’s homes late at night or in the early am hours. Again, common courtesy seems to have gone out the window with a lot of today’s parents. For example; last summer there was a boy calling our teen daughter at 2 a.m. We had parental controls on our phone plan and use them devoutly. However, with Wifi Facetime can still be used as can imessage. We finally had to put a password on our Wifi server to stop this. We tried talking to his mother and her response when we told her that her son was Facetiming our 13 year old at 2 a.m. was “well, he’s like me, he’s a night owl!” There was not one redeeming quality about that response. Instead, it showed us why the child felt entitled, bad parenting! The parent simply had not done her God given job in teaching this child about common courtesy or even manners. This type of parent makes it so hard on those of us who want to instill courtesy, respect, and common manners into our children. These types of parents make good parents the bad guy to our children while adding to the entitlement of their own children to do whatever they want no matter who it affects. This is bad-parenting 101.
I’m not saying I’m the perfect parent. I’d never make such a statement. But what I am saying is that I want “those” parents to teach their children simple phone manners and common courtesy. Good manners goes a long way. Bad manners, or no manners at all, foul mouths and disrespectful behaviors will get your child nowhere in this life. I’m tired of kids that think life is only about them and nobody else’s wants, needs, or desires matter. Again, bad parenting! If you’re going to have children, do society a favor and teach them common courtesy and manners. It is basic parenting that many are failing at doing.
My two teens tried the all night think last night. I kept getting woke up by noise and laughing. At 4:30 am I dragged my tired body out of bed, through the house, and down their hallway. Lights were on in both rooms. I turned the lights out and told them that being up at that hour was absolutely ridiculous and there would be no sleeping in for them. At 7:40 they were woken up and told to do the lawn. By 9:00 the lawn was done and it was on to more chores. They will be so tired tonight that them sleeping won't be a problem at all. Then, we will ALL sleep!