There’s No Way I Can Pay You Back But The Plan Is To Show You That I Understand You Are Appreciated

Today I learned/taught myself a very valuable lesson.

Over the past few days I’ve overheard my kids conspiring together about their great master plan for today. The great previously dreaded Mother’s Day. But as I let them go off in secret together to plan whatever it was they were planning, or even to overhear them plan about meeting later to plan, since let’s face it, a 5&8 year old aren’t the best at being secretive or quiet when it comes to surprises, it made me smile. Their time together gave me time alone yes, but it also helped a bond grow between them, which could come at no better moment since the bickering between them has been at an all time high. Through this great secret they held together without me, They created their own sense of teamwork on this great adventure to surprise me on my special day.

This morning came and unfortunately I heard them up and at it bright and early which is something I’ll remember to gently make known next year is a no no, but their excitement was palpable. I couldn’t hear exactly what they were up to, which was nice, since lately all that goes on between them is constant bickering, so to just hear quite footsteps and the occasional whispers was something new, although it would have been more appreciated later in the day. Anyway, the soft knock at my door came a few minutes later, followed by them sneaking in proclaiming Happy Mother’s Day bearing all their brown paper bags from school and day care along with coffee and a cinnamon bun left over from our company last night. To see them so happy and excited to have me open their gifts and working together was enough for me to not bitch them out for waking me up early on the weekend (a previously well established rule they just broke) and actually get up to participate.

The gifts were everything you’d expect, tons of fingerprint flowers and copy/paste poems, but that wasn’t the important and valuable part. The moment that made the impression on me was when I realized that I could enjoy my “special day” with just my kids. That we could be happy with just the three of us. That I can find joy in the fact that they love each other and me. That I’ve taught them to be caring and sensitive enough to value these special moments and so they recognized that and took time out of their Sunday morning cartoons to make my day important. They didn’t need a dad to lead the way or money to buy expensive gifts. We only needed each other and love.

It made me happy to understand for myself that as a family we can succeed on our own, even in the seemingly crappy moments that have been structured to support a family with maybe another parental figure that could lend to the planning of more elaborate activities. I have the most amazing and valuable support found in my kids and I appreciate the fact that they learn what I teach. This just means I have to be aware of what lessons I lead them through, as well as what thoughts I lend them to build their lives upon. But from what they exhibited this morning, the selflessness and teamwork was an excellent start.

Definitely made me one proud mama. Best Mother’s Day yet.


-Tupac Shakur/Dear Mama-

Advertisements

Welcome To Existence Everyone’s Here / Everybody’s Watching You Now Everybody Waits For You Now What Happens Next?

Today an ad popped up on my Instagram about preparing wills.

This is something I have been purposefully avoiding my entire life.

Not because I’m afraid to die because of death and all that jazz, but because in my will, I will undoubtedly have to name a Guardian for my kids. And I have no one who I would name. At this point in my life there is not a single person or couple that I would want my kids to be raised by other than with me.

My parents are out of the question for many reasons, part being the strained relationship my mother and I currently have. But also, they’re old. I want my kids to have a fun fulfilling life and my parents don’t have it in them to be sitting at soccer practice once a week and dance recitals/school plays all the time. They’ve done the discipline thing (horribly) and I don’t want them (my parents or kids) to go through that ordeal. They are just not the right fit. Sure they’re fine for a visit here and there and I trust my kids with them for like a sleepover, maybe even a weekend or something although that’s never happened, but anything longer would just be to much of them. And I know what to much of them turns into. Been there done that got the postcard and all the bills from therapy type situation.

My older sister R has 4 daughters of her own and as much as I’m sure Z would love being surrounded by sisters (or hate having less attention focused on her) I would feel uncomfortable for Little E being put in a situation like that. Plus they are super strict and highly religious and I’m just not on the same page regarding their beliefs about god or many other things in life, and therefore wouldn’t want that for my two children.

My younger sister N just had her first child last summer. I will admit it has changed her attitude towards life for the better in my opinion. It’s not so much all about her anymore which is nice to see, but the way her and her husband D live is just chaotic. They both love my kids but they have no sense of organization or discipline and they struggle so much with finances that I just can’t add this kind of thing to their life. It would be a lose/lose situation for everyone.

And that’s it. Those were my choices. I thankfully have sole custody of my kids, and they are OBVIOUSLY not going back to E. But I have no friends that are close enough to even consider for the possibility. And you can’t prepare a will without having that plan ready to go to put into the will. Like what am I going to do? Write a will but say ‘ oh I’m not a responsible enough person to have decided who my kids are going to live with so just either let my family decide or make them wards of the state’? Cause that’s basically what I’d be doing so what’s the point.

You can’t name someone Guardian in your will, without discussing it with them first. Like at least make sure they’d be willing and able to do it. I have no one to have that discussion with. I live my life independently from everyone, which as a result has ironically enough left me independent from everyone. So now, I have these two precious children to care for, and I do care for them. So much that right now in my opinion, no one else is good enough to care for them if/when I die. So I have to just not die until they’re old enough to care for themselves. Oh but C you say, what about accidents? What if you get run over by a car tomorrow?

DUH!!!!! So now you see my motherfucking problem. I have to make a will! I have to pay off my debts. I have to plan for them. Z still has 12 more years to go until she’s 18. 12 more years. I’ve only been a parent for 8.5 but I’ve made it this far. First I had to get through the divorce. Now, it’s time for me to actually start looking ahead. Planning for the future. Something I haven’t ever really done before. Everything was just get me through this day, this week, this marriage, this divorce. And now? Well now I need to be able to say get not only me through this life, but my kids through theirs.

So I’ve got to start planning ahead. But how do I plan another parent for my children? Seems like trying to get the past and the future to merge as one. I already picked a dad when I made them, and that didn’t work out well as we all know. As you can see I’m quite hesitant to try again. I don’t want to utterly fail my kids in the parenting department twice… or more.

So needless to say I won’t be writing a will anytime soon.

As dumb as it seems, it seems more logical than wasting time and money on preparing a will when I don’t know what it should say.

-Switchfoot/Dare You To Move-

I Wake Up In The Basement Iā€™m So Hungry/ I Must Be Here Sleepwalking

How to explain the unexplainable.

Sunday night I made homemade spaghetti and meatballs with ceaser salad for dinner and the kids loved it. Everything was all good. So I decided to send the leftovers with them to daycare for lunch the next day. I asked Z to get out 2 containers for me to divide it up for them. She made a big deal about her getting the green lid one and Little E said he wanted the green one too, leaving the blue lid unclaimed (seems like a stupid detail but just wait). I ignored them hoping they would forget about it by the morning, a pick your battle kinda situation and just closed them up and made my salad in my own Tupperware, with a red lid for anyone keeping track. Then I stacked all three in the fridge, thinking nothing more about it.

Skip forward to Monday morning when I tell Little E to get their lunches ready and he says there’s only one spaghetti container in the fridge. I yell from the bathroom to look harder KNOWING I just put it in there last night, three Tupperware one on top of the other. You can’t miss it. A minute later he calls back saying it’s not there.

So I’m thinking he’s just being lazy and not seeing something that’s surely right in front of his nose, and I stomp off to the kitchen prepared to whip the door open and prove him wrong and find the green lidded container that had most likely dropped behind something and go one with our day. I open the fridge. I look. I can’t find it. I LOOOOOOK hard. It’s not there. I look in the freezer. It’s not there. I check kitchen cabinets. Nope. I look in the damn garbage. Nothing. I call Z thinking she might’ve possibly hid it in some secret place to ensure she got the green top. She has no clue. I might’ve gone over board on my interrogation techniques, because seriously wtf could it have gone, but I could tell both the kids had no clue, and as a mom you know if your kid is lying. So I let it go as far as them lying went.

Then, since I was running out of options I even went so far as to check to make sure all the outer doors to our house were locked (lol I know) to make sure no one came into our house in the middle of the night and indulged on my fantastic spaghetti and then left leaving everything else untouched. Locked, obviously. So now I’m left with sleep walking/eating? And I’m like 100% sure it’s not my kids since I hear when they get outta bed to use the washroom. Little E is in a metal bunk bed that makes hella noise when he moves let alone gets in and out. And Z just doesn’t understand how to open a door quietly. So was it me? Like honestly did I eat or hide this stupid container? I’m not sure about anything anymore.

So I give Little E my salad since we’re running out of time and I have to get to work. When we got home I started a mass hunt for this thing. I looked through the fridge thoroughly again, under couch cushions and beds. Double-checked all the cupboards and drawers. Backpacks and purses. Everywhere and anywhere I thought of I searched and I can’t find the stupid Tupperware. And I know I used it because it’s not in the cupboard clean. It’s not in the dishwasher. I remember the kids fighting over it.

So we have some proverbial fairy stealing pasta making me go crazy. But I honestly have no idea what happened to it, and I don’t want to find it in a week or two based on the rotting smell coming out of somewhere.

And if someone in my house IS sleep walking? Well that’s just a whole other level of stress I don’t have patience for.

– Alice Cooper / The Awakening –

I Wish I Could Be Every Little Thing You Wanted All The Time

Last night Z nearly broke my heart.

I was washing her hair, which could be considered a full time job, although we do it on average once a week if I’ve had enough coffee and sleep, when she made the comment that she doesn’t like her hair and wished it was like all her friends hair, which is in her words ‘smooth’.

Z has the most fantastic Afro, which I’ll admit at first I didn’t at first know the first thing about dealing with for obvious reasons, the main being I never had hair like that so why bother learning right? But over the years as her hair grew I realized it was getting more curly and thick and I would need more insight on how to care for her crowning glory to do it full justice, I started researching what the better quality products would be to use. I learned all about a wash n go and wet plopping and deep conditioning which to be honest were all very helpful for my hair as well since I also have curly hair, although not to the extent of Z’s 3c/4a curls. I learned not to use drug store brands that contain sulphates and other harmful chemicals that will further dry her hair out. I learned how to trim her hair myself to maintain it and get rid of dry, split ends on my own without spending a fortune on a hairdresser. I will admit though that I still cannot plait her hair, but I have learned twist outs and how to lay her edges so I’ll just take that as a win for now. One step at a time. šŸ¤·šŸ»ā€ā™€ļø

But when she was upset last night because her hair wasn’t ‘smooth’ like all her friends at school my heart fell into my gut. I can only be so much of a roll model for her in this area. I wear my hair as big, full and curly as possible, because I honestly feel the bigger the better, and I truly think natural hair is better. I’ve straightened my hair maybe once a year since finding out all this information about hair for Z. Little E wears his hair pretty close cut because he just has no interest in keeping a style and prefers it practically shaved, and even when he does grow it out, it’s not as curly as Z’s, it’s more of a thick bigger curl. Her dad maintains a bald head although they don’t see him often (as my regular readers know 3 visits when we went back at Christmas and before that it was February last year). So I guess my point with all these “examples ” is that she has no natural hair role models as far as her hair texture. I’ve shown her on places like instagram woman with beautiful hair like hers and how they wear it even bigger than hers. For reference, her fro averages between 6-10 inches but I don’t fluff it out on the bigger side often. She prefers to style it pushed back with a headband or with a few clips or two pigtail afropuffs. Which is for the best because those are the only ones I can pull off half decently.

Anyways this is a very roundabout way of saying I hurt for her. I want her to be proud of every part of her, but this is a way I can’t directly be a role model for her. Yes, I can wear my hair naturally and I do, but her hair is distinctively different, not only from mine, but from the streets of Kelowna and even where we were before and heck even in a Kenya because of the mix, and others notice. I think it’s fantastic and beautiful and many others do as well. We constantly receive compliments while out about how nice her hair is of which I reminded her last night. I told her that her hair is original and beautiful and she should never want to change who or how she is. I was detangling it and showed her how long it was while wet and stretched out and she was so impressed, since it reaches to her elbows. So after the bath, I did one long braid for her down her back and she was much happier and kept mentioning how long and smooth it looked. Albeit it only lasted about 15 minutes until it was completely dry and shrunk up to her neck but it made her happy in that moment.

I’m just wondering how to move forward from here. I’m WELL aware that my kids should have strong black role models in their life, but if there aren’t any around… I can’t just produce them out of thin air.

My in laws are not an option, her dad is out of the question. The black community in Kelowna is to be honest practically nonexistent (trust me, I’ve looked). But I know that it will be something they need to become the fullest version of themselves they can be.

I guess that’s the most frustrating aspect of this experience. Knowing I can be the best mom I can possibly be. I can make all the healthy lunches and arrange all the play dates and study up on all the hair care and do all the sex talks, to name a few examples, but facts are facts, and facts in my situation is that my kids are half black, there’s no denying that, and I would never want to. And that culture is not something I can provide them, and they desperately need it.

It makes me feel so inadequate.

Knowing no matter what, I’ll never be enough. And I can’t do it on my own.

And what’s worse it that the right people are not offering to help.

***update***

Just stopped at Walmart and saw this ironic and timely display showing Robert Munschs books on display

All had been picked through except the braids book (which Z owns). It’s a book about a girl with hair like Z’s and how she doesn’t like to have it braided since it takes a while and hurts. Etc. But anyways it’s literally just shows how no one in Kelowna has that culture in their life nor is trying to pass it on to future generations here and I’m on my own with my kids. šŸ˜‘

*Z with morning bed head for reference*


-Dishwalla / Every Little Thing –

I Guess There’s Certain Dreams That You Gotta Keep ‘Cause They Only Know What You Let ‘Em See / They Don’t Care Like I Do Nowhere Like I Do

Google can suck my non-existent dick after they’ve shoved it up their ass.

How’s that for sexual content?

A little while ago I monetized my site with Google Adsense. I figured it’s here, you’re here, Google ad’s are there. Why not connect them all on my site for an opportunity to make a few extra dollars a month? Logical right.

So I spent pretty much a whole Saturday afternoon trying to figure out how to change the coding here on my wordpress site to allow the ads to display semi-decently, something I’m sure would’ve taken someone with experience 3 minutes. But I’m not experienced so I struggled with it and after a few hours persevered.  Then I waited while Google took over a week to approve my site (meanwhile it says it will take only a day or so to do it). I finally emailed once to see what was up, and magically it was approved later that Friday go figure. I watched over that first weekend as nothing happened on Friday, no change on Saturday, but when I woke up on Sunday to check my stats, I saw the most beautiful thing.

You my readers throughout the world had viewed ads enough times to earn me $2.94.

And I cried. Honest to goodness tears of joy. Not even three dollars but it was the most valuable 3 dollars I had ever earned.

I set this site up almost 2 years ago. On a computer that I bought with my own money. I created the name and content with my own brilliance and suffering. The blogs are FILLED with my own spelling and grammar errors, but more importantly my life. I have NO BOSS in this endeavor. It wasn’t a job that paid me. It was my outlet and in some cases my savior.  This brought me joy and relief and satisfaction because it was all mine from start to $2.94 finish. And now, in that $2.94 I saw potential for freedom from much more.

Then a few days after I got an email  from Google stating they would not be allowing ad’s on my site until I complied with their terms. The item in question? Sexual content. The post they were referring to? My sex talk with Little E.

Seriously Google?

You think an educational talk that a mother is sharing with her child is dangerous and offensive sexual content?

I FIND THAT OFFENSIVE!!!

That you think you can sensor me and my parenting. Was I sharing pornographic videos to my child to teach him about the birds and the bees? NO. Did I link those videos here? Even more no! So, for you (Google) to yank my ads and therefore my money making abilities here, because I choose to be a good involved parent, is so much of what’s wrong with the world. You want children to be ignorant? You want parents to be afraid of speaking about these things to their own offspring? Well that’s not me.

I will not pull my post for you. I will not amend it in any way to bend to your sexual content codes. I will continue to teach my son and soon my daughter when she’s old enough (so you can expect another raunchy extreme x-rated sex filled according to Google post then) because I am a good parent, and my kids will be advised, aware, conscious, caring, loving SEXUAL humans.

So keep your money Google.

It wasn’t as valuable as my children’s lives anyways.


-Khalid Ft. Kane Brown/Saturday Nights-