Tag Archive | marriage

Moments of Weakness…

Remind me time and time again that for the most part I really AM a strong person. There is so much imperfection in the world, in our selves. Some of it is wonderful and amazing, like a broken dish put together with gold (a Japanese tradition I do believe) and other things (like the news recently) are broken and horrible and scary and impossibly dark and so much more rolled into one.

I have written extensively in a post about being the “healthy one” in a marriage and family where one member is definitely in the midst of a process that is ongoing and lifelong. There is a need and a drive to ALWAYS be the healthy one. The knowledge that if I DO get sick or somehow incapacitated the family does NOT go along its merry little way intact or even the least bit organized can be a point of anxiety.

Now I do have family and friends (close family in fact) that are actually diagnosed with anxiety and taking medication for this issue. This is not where I place myself on the spectrum of mental illness with any degree of concern, but then again, we ALL experience anxiety at some point in our lives. Years ago, before I had realized (well any of us including Ken) how ill Ken truly was events combined to create a situation where I actually experienced my first ever panic attack. It was scary and upsetting and all sorts of not want to experience EVER AGAIN sort of things… it is something that I can clearly remember, hiding in the upstairs with the kids in the downstairs on the phone with a friend that I could contact instantly in tears. But in that moment of severe weakness and stress I found my way through it. And afterwards I realized that I made it, I survived the experience, I found strength with the help of another and was able to continue on.

On a regular basis I am faced with my own personal weaknesses… one that I am sure most of you are familiar with… my lack of a license. This is a phobic level issue. The idea of driving and being in charge of a vehicle does literally make me want to just curl up in a ball and hide. The twins have already discussed how one day THEY will get their licenses and drive Mom around where ever she needs to go. BUT, I have taken that weakness, that inability and made it into an adventure. Now at least 3 times a week we are making the 2 mile (one way) trek to the local YMCA and we are spending hours there meeting new people, trying new things (Echo has recently fallen in love with Little Lotus Yoga) and creating an independent moment that is HEALTHY and full of together time for us outside of the classroom and the home. The lack of driving is now a strength.

At the end of the day the tally is out there… so many things in my life are beyond my control, but really, if you look at your life can  you really say that the same it not true? It may not be your transportation or your inability to work in the country not of your birth (not that I WANT to, but the ABILITY to would be wonderful… and will be in time) but we all have our weaknesses. The trick is to find a way to find strength right there in the face of them.

I think I will always worry about what would happen if I couldn’t run the house properly for a period of time (because really it is 6 vs 1 on the let’s live a clean and clutter free life some days), and the driving issue isn’t going away any time soon. I am always going to be too short to reach the top shelves and worried about people who I love and care for. BUT, I am always going to be an optimist, I am also going to be in the corner crocheting my heart out so that I have gifts I can pluck out of my finished pile and send to a soul who needs a pick me up. I am going to be me, weaknesses and strengths and I am going to show my children that we don’t always have to be strong, as long as after we fall down we get back up and continue one!

Maybe one of my weaknesses will end up being a strength I just didn’t realize was there? What do you think?DSCN1124

15 Years and Looking Forward to Decades More…

15 years later and the one constant in my life has always been Ken. With 5 children and a move to a different country under out belt things have definitely been an adventure, though not always the adventures we have expected. June 16th of 2016 marks our 15th year of marriage. It is hard to believe that those two college kids are now who we are today.

In a world where so much seems disposable and so many things change at the drop of a hat, this marriage has been a foundation and a constant for me. We have weathered our share of storms and railed against the “unfair” nature of things we could not always control… We have celebrated life’s joy and marveled in the gifts we have been given. There has been hope and conflict, love and good byes.

I am sure everyone is well aware that we have run the gauntlet with depression, this was not exactly an unknown for me in our marriage. We just assumed, in our naivety that Ken had been “cured” of his issues and he was able to simply follow the psychiatrist’s recommendation that he, “wean off them slowly” when he relocated from the US to Canada. Thankfully this ongoing experience and journey has created an even stronger bond between us than before. I have to admit, I was a little concerned that healthy Ken would find me less of a desirable partner than he did when he was ill and not knowing it. Well two events later and an amazing new plan and the people we are now are as attractive to each other, if not more so than those silly young things way back then.

We have experienced the lows together and come out stronger and more confident, now I can only image that the highs are going to bring us. (although we have discussed how maybe we emphasized the more difficult words in our vows a little too well… richer or POORER, in SICKNESS and in health… someone out there was listening a little too closely and has a rather rude sense of humour.)

So what can I share 15 years later? Well… we have both grown together and who we are now is most certainly altered from who we were then. Our long term goals have both stayed the same and changed and one of the biggest perks to our long engagement and intent need to discuss EVERYTHING is that we have never had that shock of OMG you don’t want the same thing… but I thought… that some couples seem to have. So I will put out there… talk about EVERYTHING, every little stinking insignificant thing… We knew from the outset that not only were we raised differently in different families but in different countries. No matter what the jokes are Canada is not interchangeable with the US. We found terminology differences, ideology differences, philosophies that did not mesh. So we talked and we talked and we talked. It was tiring at times and frustrating but it was WORTH IT.

Our love has changed, maybe not changed but… matured. Where we once had a “do it like bunnies you are so hot” mentality that I swear is common in most college age love stories at the very least… now we have a soul touching, mind melding love that is beyond the fact that he STILL is so hot to me. We love who we were, who we are and the potential there is to become something even more in each other. While so many people talked about how amazing it was for us to be together 15 years it feels like, to me, that we have barely been together a drop in the bucket. There is so much more time that we have to look forward to (world and life willing), the future is enormous and my travel partner a sarcastic, crazy, sometimes angry but loving American who has only become more amazing through out the years.

The biggest thing, I think, is that our marriage is our own. We are not dependent on our parents’ marriages succeeding, no one else around us’ relationships are detrimental to our own. That is not because they do not matter or on some smaller level affect us as individuals and as a couple, but no one else’s love has created restrictions or dimension to our love. Who you love or leave does not decrease my love for Ken or his for me. We feel sadness when someone’s relationship comes to a close and joy when we celebrate another’s love but our love, our connection is our responsibility and our choice. I chose everyday to reaffirm my relationship with affection and hard work. This comes from deep inside myself.

This does not decrease the amazing assist that seeing and being around other healthy relationships can add to my life. But, my compromises and tribulations are not a result of a turbulent marriage down the block or the fact that those two people across the state are in love. Rather it is the responsibility of myself and Ken to grow and strengthen our bond. Hopefully showing to our own children that love is a wonderful and fulfilling thing to find in your life.

So… 15 yrs later and I see no end in sight. I can only wish this sort of joy to the rest of you. Find someone that makes you happy and if that is not in the cards for you or even a priority (and for some it simply isn’t) find that within yourself, find something you love to do and do it! I hope everyone can find longevity in that be it a person or something else. Thank you Ken for finding something in me that is meaningful to you and making that a priority in your life. I love you!IMG_20160617_220542

Viscount’s Christmas Temptation… a Book Review

Sometimes those free books on the Kindle lists pan out… and sometimes… well… Viscount’s Christmas Temptation by Erica Ridley was luckily one of the good ones. A novella length Regency romance, this book is listed as Book 0.5 of the series The Dukes of War.

I love the blurb at the beginning of this story:

Certain individuals might consider Lady Amelia Pembroke a managing sort of female, but truly, most people would be lost without her help. Why, the latest on-dit is that rakish Viscount Sheffield is cancelling the fete of the year because he hasn’t the time for silly soirees. He doesn’t need time- he needs her!

The perfect recipe for a light regency novella… a managing female, a man who doesn’t know what hit him but can still turn the tables and Christmas! In search of a husband Lady Amelia is not looking to bag a Viscount… but maybe he will just have to catch her himself?

I am definitely going to have to look into others of the series. Short, sweet with a touch of temptation… there is a rake involved. I would greatly suggest if you enjoy a light regency romance to give this novella a try!51hSAli-AQL._BO2,204,203,200_PIsitb-sticker-v3-big,TopRight,0,-55_SX278_SY278_PIkin4,BottomRight,1,22_AA300_SH20_OU01_