When I look at my life and the struggles I have faced as a teenager and young adult I have noticed how I always had to WORK for the things that I wanted. My parents constantly told me that “nothing in life is free” so I lived my life by this saying. I always knew that if I wanted it then it was up to me to make sure that I got it. If I wanted certain things that I knew my parents wouldn’t buy, it required me to save up the money to get it for myself. I enjoyed working and spending my own money. When I got my first job (Pizza Hut) at 16 I knew that money and working made me more happier than school ever had. I thought that getting through life with just working was all I needed to do to survive.
When I became a mother at a young age I didn’t value the word parenting. I mean how could I? I was a 17 year old single mother who still wanted to live out her teenage years. I didn’t understand that in the early years of parenting, what I decided not to make a priority would later come bite me in the behind. Things like credit, saving money, or building a foundation for my child didn’t really matter to me much. I just knew that if I went to work and got a paycheck then we would be fine for the next two weeks until I got paid again. I worked 40+ hrs a week and had nothing to show for it. I was content with where I was in my life. I was doing better than most of the teens my age I would tell myself at least.
It wasn’t until I became a mother of three when I finally realized that all the struggles I’ve been dealt with has come from lack of knowledge, income, & never having what I needed handed to me. Most of my adulthood I have been “learning from my experiences” which to me means doing whatever it was I thought was right at the time. After giving birth to my twins it opened my eyes to things I hadn’t noticed before. Like how whenever I needed something it was left up to me to get it or how I was struggling so bad financially and had no one to turn to for the financial help. I was paying out rent when I really should have been paying a mortgage. I had multiple cars in the past but only truly owned one. I couldn’t afford to go straight to college full time and not work because my son relied on my income.
I want more for my children. I want to be so financially wealthy that my boys won’t ever have to know what struggle is like. My vision is to make sure they have cars that are paid off, a house where they don’t have to pay rent, a couple of businesses that their father and myself have passed down to them. I want them to have everything they need to make them successful black men. The broke college student will never be their title because before they graduate they’ll have a savings in place for whatever goal or vision they have for themselves. I want to put my children in a position to win. To be able to win at life and success. As Dj Khald say’s give them the key. When they go off into life it’s already set up for them. They can actually build their credit, they won’t have to worry about student loans and paybacks. When they step out into adulthood they will be ready to conquer anything and if they fall short their dad and I will be there to help them out.
Putting them in a position to win is my goal. The reason I wake up everyday with a purpose. I may be nothing in this world but my children will be everything God wants them to be with my help.
“You show the twins more attention than me” when my 8 year old said this to me my heart broke. It was the words I never wanted to hear him say. I swore my entire pregnancy that I would show all of my children the same amount of attention for this very reason. I even got offended when people would say “Now you know you’ll have to give Ayden extra love since the twins are coming” like who do you think I am? I am his mother. He is my first born. How could I forget to love him? There’s no way the twins will get more attention. It truly didn’t dawn on me that our lives were about to take a major turn. I never realized how much of my time would be limited when splitting it between three.
See, growing up I was the baby of the house. I didn’t have any younger siblings and I only had one older brother which means I didn’t have to share or worry about the attention. However I do remember how my brother would say I got more stuff than him. My brother took care of me though, like leaving his class early when I first started school to make sure I didn’t miss the bus care of me. When I became pregnant with Ayden at 17 I knew that things were no longer about me. I knew that my limits were cut short because I had to provide for a child now. I didn’t have a choice but give my all to him because he didn’t ask to be here and I was his mother. My entire life revolved around Ayden. Everything I did was always for him. I lost jobs, friends, money, self providing for my son.
When we found out we were having a baby it wasn’t a surprise to us, however we didn’t really put thought into how it would make Ayden feel. He had mentioned before about wanting a brother or sister but not too often. When we told him he was overly excited he had to tell the world, it wasn’t until we found out it was twins when his attitude towards being a big brother changed. Everyone was reminding him how things were going to change and how he would have to grow up. I was constantly nagging him to do things I never made him do like clean his room, pick up after himself, get on a routine schedule. When people would ask him if he was ready to be a big brother he would say no. He would sometimes say mean things about his brothers but deep down he had a soft spot for them. When I would be hurting he would always make sure I’m okay. If I had to call the school to tell him something or if had to be a car rider his first response would be “Is my mama okay?” He worried about me a lot during my pregnancy. I loved that. He knew I needed him just as much as he needed me.
After I gave birth to the twins it was a real eye opener for all of us. Looking back, we truly were in denial the whole nine months. We didn’t realize how much time and attention both babies would need. Our whole lives revolve around these babies since the day they were born. It’s not an easy job and whenever we have free time all we want to do is just rest. Before we would go to the park, go out to dinner or brunch, watch movies, and just overall spend time together. Lately it hasn’t been like that and just as much as he misses it I miss it too. I miss the days when it was just us. When I only had to get him and myself ready. I miss being on time to every event and now getting places an hour late is on time for us. When we could actually sit down as family and eat dinner with no interruptions.
I had to explain to him that we have to learn to adjust to our new lives and we were blessed to spend 8 good years together but now we have to share our love. I had to remind him that before it was just me & him for 4 years then God sent us daddy. We had to adjust to it being three of us instead of two and how hard it was for him but 4 years later he can’t see his life without his step father. Now that the twins are here we have to adjust again and it won’t be easy but we will get through it together. I also explained to him that the twins can’t do anything for themselves so that’s why the require so much attention. When he was their age he required a lot of attention too but only differences it was one of him and two of them. We spent a whole weekend together and I really just let him open to about his feelings. We bonded in that moment which was something we both needed from each other. Some days he acts out but it’s only because he is still adjusting but I will continue to be hard on him because at the end of the day you can’t make excuses for your actions.
Parenting is not always easy breezy. I have truly learned that these past few weeks. Your children will say things that will hurt you but know they don’t truly mean it. We also have to remember that each one of our children are individuals who require different ways of love. They need one on one time with you alone to feel loved and wanted. Remind them that everyone is equal and your love for them is the same as their siblings. Build a bond with them. Allow them to be able to talk to you when needed. Life always seems to get in the way but don’t get so caught up with the everyday life that you forget the importance and value of family and love.
“You can’t pour from a empty cup, take care of yourself first”
Every once in a while we have to take a step back to focus on our mental and physical health. We put so much time and energy into work, our families, & businesses that we rarely have the time for ourselves. We have people depending on us for almost everything. The kids need help with homework, dinner has to be made, grandma needs a ride to the doctor, the car broke down so it's only one car to get everyone where they need to go. Life is still kicking our a** and it often feels like we can never catch a break. We fall short of self care and coffee becomes the best friend. It becomes harder to wake up in the mornings and it takes a little more make up to brighten you up. Your mentally and physically drained. Well I'm here to tell you, your cup is empty and it's time to refill.
I'm going to give you 5 tips to refilling you empty cup:
1. It's time to say "NO!"
It's okay, I know it may be hard for you but in order for you to be able to refill your cup you are going to have to tell some people NO. I say this because your cup is empty, you truly have nothing else to give and people have to understand that. It has to be a limit for what you do for others so that you can make sure you do for yourself. How can you give someone something that you don't have? No one likes the word no but some people have to be told this because if not then they will always expect you to say yes.
2. Find your peace
When it comes to refilling your cup know that your peace has to be protected. When you are mentally drained it becomes hard for you to maintain daily life. Your peace is your everything, nothing should take away your focus. Make time to find your peace. Try reading, yoga, listen to a podcast, or mediation.
3. Be honest
People only know what you tell them. If life is becoming too much for you open up to someone so they know what is going on. You should never have to fight a battle alone. Support is our greatest weapon. If someone can't understand or empathize with your situation then you don't need them aound any way. Allow yourself to be vulnriable in this time of healing. When refilling your cup you have to be able to grow enough to over fill the cup. You won't be the same once the cup is already empty.
4. Self care
Say it with me! "Self care is important." We need it, we love it, we must do it! We cannot go without our self care. Your cup is empty because you forgot about yourself. You put so much time refilling somone elses cup that you forgot to fill your own cup. You cannot help others if you are not your best self. You can't put so much time into someone and then cheat yourself. When I say self care it can be as simple as taking a walk, listening to your favorite song, going to lunch with a friend, eating that junk food. Do something that makes you feel good. You deserve that happiness.
When your cup is empty that is the perfect time to just unplug from everything and just focus on self. Take a break from social media, cut your phone off before 7pm, put DND (do not disturb) on the group chats. Take the time to soley focus on you. Pray and talk to God, Allow him to be your friend. Listen to his word. Take a step away from the outside distractions and make time for you. You can't keep giving what you don't have, You need time to recharge. Your mental health is important.
You can't pour from an empty cup. Every once in a while our cups become empty and we have to remember to take time to refill our cups. We can be super moms but once the battery dies we have to recharge. Make time for God and yourself. Protect your peace and be open about your situation. Self care is your best friend and it's okay to simpy say no. You are in charge of your mental health unplug if you need to. Always rememeber in order to be our best selves we have to be at our best selves 💕
How honored I am to be able to share 25 of those years with you. The light of my life. My moon and the stars. My balance of peace and dedication. The woman I strive to be better than but some times falls short. The listener, teacher, spokesperson, chairman. The glue, tape, and the staples. The fixer. You have all the answers and even if you don’t you’ll figure it out. My mother, my queen, my best friend.
Today the world rises and sets on you. I want to say THANK YOU for being whatever I needed you to be at any given moment. Thank you for being my therapist if needed. Thank you for molding me into the woman and mother I am today. When I’m falling short you are there to pick me up and remind me who I am and my purpose. When my life is falling apart you are there to help me fix it. When I need wine after a long day of work, you have the glass ready.
See.. My mother is my best friend but it has it’s limits. She’s the type of best friend that you can’t really do everything with her but when you need her she is always there. We talk on the phone daily, some times for hours. We laugh together, cry together, & spend a lot of time together. She is there for me in some of my worst times. She knows the real me from inside and out. She knows my heart, attitude, & abilities. When I first became a mother at the young age of 17 my mother didn’t encourage the situation but supported me. I didn’t have to be afraid to come to my mother, she actually came to me. She didn’t make me go to appointments alone, she held my hand. I didn’t have to go through labor alone, she scrubbed up, and told me everything was going to be fine. My mother taught me how to be a survivor. She taught me to remember that “Tomorrow is Tomorrow” so I never had to worry about it.
I can never pay you back for all that you do for me and my boys but I promise you when I’m able you’ll never have to work again. I hope when I’m 50 I’ll be looking half as good as you.. Happy Fabulous 50 Queen💕
Have you been struggling trying to make ends meet? You work every day, get paid, and your check is gone before it even hits your account? Have you ever been so low that you’ve had nothing and could do nothing but drop to your knees and pray for a better situation, to be able to make it through the rest of the week, for a blessing or a miracle? Have you ever went to bed hungry so your child could eat?
It’s been a long, stressful, hard four months for me and my family. After giving birth to my twins I was off work almost 8 weeks with no pay. My boyfriend worked 16 hr days for six months before having our babies so when they were born he decided to quit his job so he could be home to help me especially since I had a c-section. Our original plan was to save money from our taxes but life hit us on a rainy day so we had to make other plans. I worked until I was 37.5 weeks pregnant (5 days before my scheduled c-section). We needed to pay a few bills up since we knew I wouldn’t be getting paid. We were doing fine.
It was not until I went back to work when things began to take a turn. My first check I was to receive after being back at work did not come for a whole TWO weeks causing me to fall short. Rent was due, lg&e was due, car payment was behind (they truly worked with me) and my insurance had canceled. I had to make choices on the bills I needed to pay. My top priority was rent because I have way to many babies to be homeless. So I let the LG&E go without being paid thinking I could make it until the next week. Well I didn’t make it to the next week, lights were off. It was at this moment I knew I had hit my lowest. I was embarrassed and ashamed all I could do was cry. I knew that I was going to have to do something I truly hated doing “Ask for help”. I didn’t get paid for another week and my babies could not be with no electricity. My mother helped me but also had me go to one of those churches for assistance. At first I was like “Hell no, ain’t nobody going to catch me begging”. She put me in my place real quick. She explained to me that it was not about me, it was about my children. It takes a REAL mother to step aside and ask for help. She made me realize that I was never too good for help. So I went down there and got my assistance. It just so happened one of her long term friends worked there and got me every kind of assistance possible. It helped me but it didn’t fix my situation completely.
I am still struggling to this day. Some days I have $0 until I get paid. I can’t always afford gas and my refrigerator is sometimes empty (I don’t get food stamps) so we eat at my parents, boyfriends grandma or we eat out. I don’t always have lunch to send my son to school with like he use to. The bills are still coming and some are still behind. I may look like I have it all together but in reality I don’t. I am a work in progress though. Somehow I always seem to make the ends meet. My boyfriend is a stay at home dad/college student. I work two jobs so he can finish school. While I was in school I didn’t work and he handled everything so now I’m returning the favor. It’s not always easy and some days it’s hard for him to see me work so hard but I remind him that we’re doing this for him and his future.
We’re doing just fine. We see the light at the end of the tunnel. God has always been on our side. We could have lost everything but we didn’t. We know there is people in worst situations than us. So we wake up humble ready to accomplish each day. God has to break us down to build us back up. I never knew what it was like to be struggling with three kids because I only had one, but I’m glad God is showing me because I know it’s a feeling I never want to feel again. We have our children to keep us going. Tough times don’t last forever, tough people do 💪🏿🤞🏿❤️
In today’s society there is so much talk about mothers and how they manage their social lives. As mothers we are expected to handle everything. We are the ones who our children look to the most. Between work, school, cooking, cleaning, after school activities, & more we often don’t get the time to go out and have a good time. It’s more of a hassle to go out for drinks & enjoy the little free time we do get.
I’ve seen way too many posts about how mothers should be home with their children instead of going out every weekend (like we’re not home with our babies everyday during the week). Some mothers are single mothers with no help from the father or any other outside support. Most of us like myself are young still in our 20’s or 30’s although we are mothers we still deserve to have a social life. I remember a time I thought that if I wasn’t working, at school, or taking care of my son then there was no need for anyone to see me out. I felt like I was not handling my responsibilities if I was out partying with my friends (most of my friends didn’t have children). I felt my life had to revolve around being a mother and that only. I was so wrong.
It’s more of a double standard especially in co-parenting families when it comes to situations like this. Why is it that fathers can go out with no one complaining and mothers are criticized? Fathers can play part time parent while mothers are required to be there 24/7? Why is it fathers feel like they are “babysitting” when it’s their own child? A father can walk away from his family and go make a new family, but let a mother decide she’s done and walks away. Oh how the world would stop and she be the worst person on earth.
Mothers deserve a break. We are the ones who keep everything together. If mother is sick then who covers for her? When she’s tired who covers for her? Mothers are superhero’s but even superhero’s need to recharge. She needs those times with her girl friends to have a drink or five. Those nights away from the kids to feel young again. She can let her hair down, act crazy, dance, sing, & just be free for one night. ONE NIGHT is all we ask for. She shouldn’t have to feel guilty for having a good time or worry getting dirty looks for others. If the bills are paid, house is cleaned, babies have everything they need & she handled all her responsibilities as a mother than I say YES MAMA! GO HAVE THOSE DRINKS AND DANCE THE NIGHT AWAY.. I’ll meet you there ❤️
One day I was scrolling down my timeline on Facebook and I came across a post from Tia Mowry about her struggle with losing her postpartum weight. She explained how her insecurities would get the best of her when she looked at other moms bodies who shrunk back down to normal size after child birth. She was seven weeks postpartum and she still looked like she was still carrying a baby. It was her second C-section and both times her body didn’t shrink back down to her body goals.
I can totally relate to how Tia feels. Both of my pregnancy I had to have C-sections and both times I weighed over 150lbs. My first pregnancy it took me a few years to lose my postpartum weight. I felt my stomach fat just wouldn’t go away. I gained more weight after having my son Ayden due to being on birth control. I was wearing a size 16. It caused me a lot of insecurities and depression. I was young and didn’t feel beautiful anymore. My body was changing and I didn’t understand why. It was a long rode to self discovery for me. I had to learn that I was beautiful on the inside and outside. I had to love myself for who I was instead of who I thought I seen in the mirror. I became the home body who never wanted to go hang out with her friends and all I did was work.
When I looked at other moms around me who were my age or older I would see them have their babies and their bodies were SNATCHED, looking amazing and I couldn’t understand for the life of me why my body didn’t do the same. My body doesn’t allow me to lose weight fast like others. It’s a process of eating healthy and working out for me but as a working mom I don’t always have the time to do both. So I have to embrace my right now, my situation, my body, myself as it is right now. I know my body goals will be what I want it be but not right after giving birth.
I had to make myself realize this past pregnancy that 1. I had just given birth to TWO healthy big boys. 2. I have to give my body time to heal on it’s on. Instead of worrying about how I look I should enjoy and reflect on the beauty of being a mother. How I was not like most moms, I got to experience carrying two humans within my body. So whatever happened to my body after labor I would embrace it and love myself. I’m not saying it was easy, that first look in the mirror was depressing in my eyes. I complained a couple of times but my boyfriend, the father of my children reminded me that he loved me regardless of how I looked or felt. After that I told myself I would never look down upon myself again.
Pregnancy is a beautiful thing. It’s something that should be embraced and a happy moment for new parents. When you see a mother who had just given birth remind her that she is beautiful. You never know what she may be going through. Battling with herself on self love. Motherhood is not defined by how we look, but how we love and provide for our children. They love us and feel we are beautiful to them. Love yourself as you are right now and make the changes when the time is right. Remember, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL JUST THE WAY YOU ARE MAMA 💕
At what age did/will you sit your son down and give him the “talk”? I’m not talking about the “birds and the bees” talk but the “Being a black man in America” talk. I am a mother of three handsome African Americans boys and I know that one day the time is going to come where I am going to have to sit them down and have this talk with them. The sad thing is they won’t understand why we have to have this conversation until they get older and experience it on their own.
My oldest son will be turning 8 years old come October and it wasn’t until my mother reminded me that the time is coming to sit him down and have the “talk” with him. On how Philando Castile was shot and killed while his girlfriend and daughter were in the car, how Alton Sterling was killed in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and the police who shot him were never held accountable for his murder, or Eric Garner who was choked to death while saying “I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe.” I will have to teach him that everything is not equal. He doesn’t get to go out and act a fool. He can’t do the same things as some of his white buddies because the risks are too high for him to be killed. He’ll have to understand that he was born a target, this is not something that happened over night. He comes from a long list of black brothers who’ve had to experience the same fears. When the police pulls him over he can’t talk to them any way he wants. To protect his life he will have to keep your hands above his head or on the stirring wheel. He will have to ask before he grabs his licenses and registration because the color of his skin is portrayed as violent.
The subject is touchy, uncomfortable, and heartbreaking. It’s the raw truth us as black parents have to face. No parent should have to fear for the safety of their children all because of the color of their skin. l know it may not be fair, but I would rather have my sons humbled than harmed.
I grew up in a predominantly white neighborhood and I seen how hard it was for my only brother to realize that it wasn’t because of who he was that he wasn’t able to do the same things as his white friends but because of the skin color he was born with. My sons will know that when I call their phones they HAVE to pick up because I worry about them not making it back home. They will always have to work twice as hard to be treated half as equal. Statistics show that the older they get the more likely it is they will become victims of violence. They will also be seen as a suspect, but for no other reason than being a black male. That hanging out with one or more of their black friends outside will be seen as “a gang" rather than friends hanging out. It will depend on who's watching them, if they will be considered "a threat" or not.
It frustrating as a black woman because I often feel I don't have the right to display my outrage at the wrongdoers. If I yell at them to protect my sons it will be portrayed as the angry black woman not as the mother who is fighting for equal rights for her children. Being a mother of three black boys, I have to be extra in making sure they understand how their presence can make others feel threatened, while at the same time help them understand they have value and a purpose. I have to have a conversation with them about how they will be considered as "fit the description”. Sometimes the reason for being pulled over is because you're just driving while being black. As parents our goal should be raising a boy in America, not raising a black boy in America. We live in a world where our sons will be presumed guilty the moment he is born.
I realized that it’s a harsh reality and something black parents have to face every single day. It will be uncomfortable to talk about but the only way we can grow is to be uncomfortable. Yes, it’s heartbreaking that the “talk” has to even happen but it's the world that we live in. We have to protect our sons and protecting them means having these hard conversations with them. Our sons and daughters are the future, we need them, we love them, we know them.
Dear Young Queen,
I know often times it seems like the weight of the world is on our shoulders. We have constant battles with ourselves about who we are and who we want to be. We’re young, trying to live, & find ourselves all in one chapter. We’re rebellious to the thoughts of anyone trying to control us or make us less than who we are. We are defensive with our hearts. We often feel love doesn’t exists anymore or we have to sell ourselves short to please the ones we love.
Well I’m here to tell you something.. YOUR CROWN DOESN’T COME OFF! It may tilt or need to be repositioned but it DOESN’T come off. You don’t have to settle for less than you deserve. You don’t have to wake up feeling hopeless or alone. We are QUEENS who are in this together. We are meant to rule the world. Our power as women is stronger than any force that come against us. You don’t have to go out looking for love, open your mind & heart to love yourself. Be confident in who you are and where you’re going. Don’t spend your days longing for something that left a long time ago. Trust in God and yourself to mend your broken heart. People won’t always see you for who you are but sometimes for what you have. Don’t let anyone take advantage of your heart.
Love even when it hurts. Don’t let the actions of others stop you from having a loving, caring heart.
You’re crown does not come off for the negativity, hurt, lies, or battles you may face. Face your fears with your head held high and your crown sitting pretty. You are the Queen so act like one. The Queen doesn’t come off her throne to address a peasant throwing stones. Playing it cool does not make you a fool.
I know the struggle of being young and being a mother. The confusing of feeling like your not doing enough. Just know you’re doing everything right and even if you’re not you’ll figure it out. Don’t get discouraged by seeing other moms who “look” like they have it all together, because it reality we’re all losing our shit! Keep striving to be your best self for you and your family.
Ask yourself, what areas of your life can use improvement? How can you change your current situation? Take baby steps if you need to. Pa renting doesn’t come with a blueprint. You learn from experiences. Always remember, YOUR CROWN DOESN’T COME OFF!
It’s a feeling that is frustrating to explain because it doesn’t make sense to me some days. I can be fine one minute and then before I know I’m biting my nails, heart racing, hot, sweaty, and irritable. My mind starting going crazy and it becomes hard to focus. I find myself worrying all the time. Are my kids okay? Will I have the money for the rent? What if I lose my job? Does he still love me? Why can’t I stop worrying? Some many questions and concerns that I have no answers to. I don’t even know why I be thinking some of the thoughts that be going through my head. I’m constantly freaking out over things that I know I can’t change. Like the fact that I just had twins and was on maternity leave with no pay for 8 weeks. I know that times was going to be hard for a while and once I got back working I was going to be playing catch up but yet and still I find myself overwhelmed with thoughts of how I’m not doing enough when really I’m doing the best I can.
Some days are better than others. I don’t think about harming myself or my children. I’m happy 85% of the time but yet and still I feel off balanced. Yes, I cry sometimes but I blame that on hormones. So what is this feeling I’ve been feeling? Well I did some research on postpartum depression and came across a post about postpartum anxiety. It’s not as popular as postpartum depression but at least 10% of women suffer from it. I want to believe I am included in the 10%.
Unfortunately, postpartum anxiety isn’t the disorder that's talked about most, so many moms, such as myself, aren't sure what to think once they start experiencing these worrisome feelings. Postpartum anxiety can cause changes in eating and sleeping. Dizziness, hot flashes, rapid heartbeat, and nausea can all be signs of PPA, as well as the inability to sit still or focus on a particular task at hand. All these things I’ve been experiencing these past three months.
I haven’t been able to talk to anyone besides my boyfriend about it in fear that people will judge me or say I’m over exaggerating but I know that the only way things will get better is by opening up and talking about my problem. I’m still figuring it out but I know I cannot do this alone. So I’m writing this post to raise awareness about postpartum anxiety in hope that some mommy is out there struggling with the same thing and we can help one another. Let’s keep reminding ourselves to keep going and have faith that God will change our situation.