I just couldn’t wait

Life is fleeting – this is my favorite of all time.

I know that when I die many things will happen ::  the world will still continue for all but a few.  Those few will certainly grieve for me.  They will feel a void, they will feel cheated, and not ready.  The will feel as though a part of them died as well.  They will want more time with me.  I know this from losing those I love and grieve for today.  Knowing this, I want to teach you, teach you how to remember the past but, live in the now.  My time with those I love, that time, those memories are finite and fleeting.  So l pass this knowledge on to you before too much time passes & I am no longer here.

If you have lost anyone you loved, anyone you wish you had just one more day with.  Think of that – that pain – that want – and don’t waste another second not filling the time you have even if just 30 minutes with those who you love and if time was taken away you would say, “I wish I had one more day”.  Make  today count.  That way there are no regrets.  In death you can embrace life instead and cry with tears of happiness and tears of joy for the gift of having them for as long as you had them … until you meet again.  Make your seconds matter, share yourself with those you love.  Do not squander that time – it will pass and you will have regret.  DO NOT spend your time on those who don’t make an effort or time for you – who mistreat you or don’t appreciate you.

LAUGH/SMILE – smile and be happy – stop allowing others to make your day better – you control it.  If you constantly argue or have someone who is wearing on you and taking that smile away – remove them from your everyday.  NO ONE should have that power over you.  It is yours to keep.  USE that power wisely and SMILE; life is so much better, I promise.

SARCASM – Don’t take everything so seriously, mock many things in life & enjoy it but, be serious when you need to be serious about serious situations.

DECISIONS – really get to know yourself, and once you do.  Make decisions about your life and your happiness based off of you and who you really are.  Don’t compromise who you are for others.  Make decisions that will lead you where you want to be.  You are the only reason you don’t succeed.  Sometimes you have to think about a decisions before you make it, if you are struggling with it.  Talk to God & also write down the positives/negatives and help yourself make the decision.  But, it’s okay if you make the wrong one.  Sometimes they are hidden gems that lead you to a place you never thought of.  LEARN how to do things yourself.  Check the oil, change your tire, and a little maintenance.  Read the directions you can build it, you can cook it.  DO NOT QUIT – allows follow through, always be a person of your word….character is what defines you.  Don’t smoke if you do quit.  Your body is a temple and this will destroy it – I promise.  If you choose to do illegal things, know the consequences and pay the price.

PROCRASTINATION – don’t procrastinate – make time for things – one thing at a time even, finish them – a project or hobby.  Today is only here today.  I’m trying to catch up on mine – I started too many.

THINGS – remember things are just that, things – over priced – replaceable.  Spend your money on yourself and those you love for fun and memories.  But, make the gift worth your money.  I’d rather have one really nice necklace I can wear daily than 40 cheap ones.  Because one is all you ever really need.  (but, trust me I have 100 because I’m cheap) Just remember to buy the things that you really want.   The other things just collect dust and end up being sold for a $1 at a garage sale.  Make GIFTS, put thought into the gifts for the people you care about.  Don’t be afraid to shop at goodwill (or coupon and sale shop) for clothes and know you can look FINE as hell.  I rocked many goodwill dresses and outfits.  Spend your money on what makes you truly happy.  For me, it’s vacation!!!

LOVE – This is not negotiable!!!  You MUST love yourself first.  If you don’t love yourself, you will never truly be happy with anyone.  If you aren’t happy with yourself – fix what you don’t like.  I don’t mean just the physical parts, I mean emotionally, mentally, spiritually.  Make yourself strong, love yourself – even your flaws.  Make your flaws work for you, not against you.   if you aren’t sure you are in love – it’s not love.  When you know – you know.  If you are willing to give up everything and I mean everything for one person it’s true love.  That doesn’t mean you have to give it up because if they love you – they won’t allow that to happen.  There are many different levels of loving someone, don’t be afraid of any of them.  But, when you find REAL TRUE love with another – hold onto it & remember it is better to have loved and lost then to have never loved at all.  (this goes back to appreciating what you have) even when it’s taken away.

FORGIVE – forgive yourself for any mistakes and pain you may have caused others, even yourself.  Forgive those who have caused you pain.  Forgive them … when you forgive you will feel free.  Just because you forgive doesn’t mean you will forget.  Use your mistakes to learn, use others to avoid making the same.

ALWAYS GO WITH YOUR GUT – if it says this isn’t right, it feels wrong, believe it.  If it says it’s unsafe – get out – don’t wait!!!  Your intuition is just that it’s almost never wrong.

FAITH/HOPE – ALWAYS have faith, find something bigger in you to believe in.  Prepare for the worst & hope for the best.  This way you are never truly disappointed.  Know that anything is possible, good or bad.  Learn how to cope, how to deal.  You have to find healthy ways to deal with life, changes and sadness.  Don’t make things bigger than they are.  Things take hard word & patience.  There are so many healthy ways to deal with life and sadness, don’t self diagnose and don’t always take a pill to fix it – the world today is too offended & blames everything on a “diagnosis”.  It’s called life – FIX the things that cause you all the bad emotions.  If you do need medicine make it temporary, remember to look for healthy home remedies too.

DON’T BE AFRAID – fear is only fear if you don’t face it.  If you live in fear you are never truly living.  Try new things, try them more than once, we change as we grow.  Expand your pallet – taste new foods, taste them more than once, our taste buds grow too.  Know the difference between “I don’t like the way that taste” and “I don’t really like the thought of liking that”.  Really TRY it.  This isn’t just about food.  Don’t be afraid to dance, to sing, to be silly, to laugh.  Don’t be afraid to be HONEST, to allow your partner to have friends of the opposite sex (you either trust them or you don’t – if you don’t you’re wasting your time with that person).   It’s about a job, a career, school, staying at home, being a friend, having friends, sharing, helping a stranger, giving, taking, asking for help, driving, flying, boating, sking, parachuting, being a sibling, a child, a mother, and grandmother, an Aunt, a Godmother, it’s about EVERYTHING.

LOYAL & HONEST – lying will only cause you more pain, more lies, and more drama.  A relationship can never be built on dishonesty.  Avoid temptation, if something is tempting you & it’s bad “avoid it, them”.  Don’t be afraid to walk away from it.  Always tell the truth!!!!  Always – in the end truth always wins.  If you have to hide it – you aren’t suppose to be doing it.  We all have a moral compass, we direct it.

FIND THE FREE THINGS – find the free things in life – the library gives a pass to one state park for free.  Find out when you can go to places for free, discounted movies for free.  Some of the best things in life are FREE.  You just have to take the time to find them.

TRUST – trust yourself – trust that you will figure it out, trust that you can do it alone, trust that you picked a good partner, trust that if it doesn’t work you will find a way  to make it work (even if on your own), trust those who have proven to you they will never turn their backs on you, trust that the only guarantee in life is CHANGE, trust that there are no promised tomorrows, trust that in life you can either survive in this world and be a victim your entire life or you can LIVE life to the fullest enjoying everything the world has to offer.  If you don’t like your job, find a new one.

When you become a parent, let your kids sleep in the middle sometimes but, mostly in their bed, say yes more, be strict but loving, guiding and affection, sit back and just watch them, soak in the moments in awe & know that you created that.  Watch them, let them choose sometimes, most importantly ALWAYS FOLLOW THROUGH.  There are consequences to actions, they must know this.  Don’t sway or feel bad, no means no, it’s not up for negotiation.  Don’t parent from guilt.  Parent with enforcement, honesty & love, don’t allow them to disrespect you or others, don’t give them everything they want make sure they hear NO, make them do chores & know how to survive on their own, teach them life skills, and how to be good human beings.  SHOW them by leading them with your example, teach them about money.  Make time for yourself, make time for each child individually.  Embrace their differences but, love them the same – never have a favorite.

ENJOY IT – have fun, enjoy everything life has to offer, make acronyms, write poetry, do whatever you want.  Learn to carry a tune or play an instrument.  GIVE back, volunteer especially with the elderly.  Listening to them is therapeutic.  Read a book, go for a walk, a run, use your imagination.

Last but, not least TRUST that when people show you who they are believe them.  It’s simple really, don’t make it difficult.  This one is the most difficult for people to believe but, it’s true.  Do things because it’s the right thing to do, you know it’s deserved, appreciated and not because of guilt.   Listen to music and let it change you, dance!   Don’t complain about it, find solutions and fix it. We only have one body, one life here on Earth make it the healthiest and happiest!

Know whether you are my child, my surrogate child, my niece/nephew, my surrogate niece/nephew, my relative or my friend.  I choose for you to be in my life – because I am blessed.  Know that I LOVE YOU.

LOVE YOURSELF FIRST                        Keona Michelle Shelley Stidham   10-28-2017

~ Be strong, but not rude.  Be kind, but not weak.  Be bold, but don’t bully.  Be humble, but not shy.  Be proud, but not arrogant. ~ Jim Rohn

~ Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal ~ Richard Puz

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Today

I’m kind of obsessed about specific things.  Once a thought pops into my mind, it always comes back – maybe not today but, it does return.  One of those obsessions is being prepared “today”.  Being prepared for whatever comes my way, being organized, being somewhat flexible but, mostly prepared for today – which for me is always tomorrow as well.  For I don’t look back, I always look forward.  While I can’t prepare or plan for everything.  The things that I can plan for, I will.  Some call it OCD, I just call it responsible and prepared.   My friends call and ask, when can you pencil me in.  I love being busy and filling my schedule.  It means I’m not missing out – that I’m able to fill every important second with important people, places, events, memories and moments.  Please listen when I say … THEY ARE ALL IMPORTANT TO ME.

In that preparation, I think about death – often.  It may seem strange to you but, not to me.  I have had a will since I was 20 & since I have aged, that has grown.  From a will, to a living will, to a medical will, to life insurance policies, to a list of gifts for specific people, to writing my own obituary, knowing what I want for my services, to even picking out the songs.  I of course will leave room for others to add their own music or photos and clergy but, I have my desires listed (I will haunt you – if not followed).

Back in the day when I first decided to travel without my children.  I found it somewhat risking to possibly die at the same time as their other parent.  So, I even opted to fly separately if the children weren’t with us.  This inspired me to write them letters.  Letters for graduation, wedding, birth & so forth in case I had left the Earth prior to said events & milestones in my childrens lives.  I still have those letters.  Then I decided to write letters to all of my nieces/nephews.  I often bring up death and if people have a plan and have paid for their services.  I don’t find it odd, I find it responsible.  I don’t want to leave behind any burdens for my children or significant other.  Therefore; I have the life insurance to pay for my wishes & leave a little something behind to help my children not struggle so much financially.  (No you’re not getting $100K).

So, to the point – somehow it came up with both my parents, they have a plan and are prepared so I am not left with a financial burden.  It has also came up with my Aunt Jamie who has my mind processing things even one step further THANKS!  Then there was this day with my niece McKenna.  I told her about my preparedness and my letters and it shocked me but, she wanted to read my letters now and not wait.  Me being a stubborn person of course told her not today, she had to wait and she would receive them once I passed away.  Then my niece, Kyree lost her Grandpa on her mothers side & my nephew, Gage mom posted about the loss of her brother 7 years ago.  These specific things come up often in my head and today I began to remember conversations with others about death.  My mother said, “whatever you want to give someone in death, you should give them now”.  Well, that’s her way.  I’m still stubborn and won’t give away the letters I wrote for when I pass.

But, I did take something from what my mom told me.  Last year I gave all of my nieces/nephews & children an elephant of mine.  They were the first things I ever collected.  I wrote them a paragraph with it.  I copied the paragraph (and gave all of my nieces/nephews one that actually said, LOVE MOM and it had stuff about them being born.  It’s funny because even when trying to be prepared I make mistakes – this is a perfect example of one.  I know that when they opened those gifts, it meant more to me then them.  But, I took my moms advice and I wanted them to have it now – not later.  I also decided that I needed to write them a letter – a letter about life – advice – just words and share it with them now if they are old enough about TODAY because tomorrow will be our TODAY and I don’t want them to wait until I die to hear most of these words of encouragement and wisdom.

I’m going to post the letter on my blog so they can all see it when they want to, when they are old enough, when they need words of encouragement, or just want to hear it again.

These are some of the topics that will be in the next post.  Death, Smiling, laughing, sarcasm, decisions, procrastination, things,  love, forgiveness, faith, fear, truth, loyalty & trust.

TODAY (is your yesterday, your today & your tomorrow)
2013 Chris Fuller & Evan at Lucas Oil Stadium football.jpg

How Do You think
By Anonymous

If you think you are beaten, you are;
If you think you dare not, you don’t!
If you’d like to win, but you think you can’t,
It’s almost certain you won’t.

If you think you’ll lose, you’re lost;
For out in the world we find
Success begins with a fellow’s will;
It’s all in the state of mind!

If you think you’re outclassed, you are;
You’ve got to think high to rise.
You’ve got to be sure of yourself
Before you’ll ever win the prize.

Life’s battles don’t always go
To the stronger or faster man;
But sooner or later the man who wins
Is the person who thinks he can!

Mine is different from yours

My Mother’s Day doesn’t start like yours.  I work night shift and therefore; have the luxury of receiving the earliest of Mothers Day wishes from my eldest son at 3am.  While you are tucked away sleeping, I receive a phone call from 1,087 miles away.    1997 Eian 2 and Evan 3 months

He’s now 21 and living in Coloroda and in the US Army.  He hasn’t been at home for almost 3 years now.  He is a smart, genuine, handsome, athletic, faithful, caring but realistic and determined young man with dreams.  He tends to stay to himself, he doesn’t like attention and he is very passionate.  He is strong willed and focused.  He has thick skin & doesn’t let much get to him.  He works hard and he plays hard.  He and I grew so much closer once he joined the Military & I will never forget “that letter” he wrote while in boot camp.  The letter was written of his own persuasion & from the heart.  It was like I felt the ink drinking onto my heart from each and every word he wrote.  He also gave a shout out while he was in Qatar on Facebook one year – and when he posted it.  I thought to myself – damn girl you got it right – motherhood.  He stated that it was the little things he missed the most and that he didn’t take things for granted and he missed my hugs.  He is absolutely one of a kind and I am so proud to have shared the firsts with him in Motherhood.  Technology obviously makes it easier for me to see him but, there’s nothing like seeing him or hugging him in person.

My phone has yet to ring today from Evan.  He is my 19 year old spunky, spirited, humerus, loud, stubborn, not easily embarrassed center of attention, creative, talented fly by the seat of your pants son.  He will be the life of the party and light up every room he walks into.  You are somehow drawn to him and his personality.  He has a caring soul, he is sensitive and wears his heart on his sleeve.  He finds his own road and determines every direction based from today – there is no planning.  He is unorganized and the risk taker.  He cares what others think and he wants to help everyone and see everyone else happy.  He’s a giver.  He was my baby boy and we were close when he was little & it held up until right at 18.  As he started to take on the world as an adult – we began to clash. I was too nosy, too involved.  He is right, that’s exactly the type of parent I am.  As he started his Senior year in HS, his invincible attitude lead him into a few rough patches.  He struggled to finish that year but, he did.  It wasn’t easy – I know as I was the one calling, emailing, checking in, helping and yes even doing sometimes.  He had no desire to be in school as he felt he wasn’t understood.  Luckily, there was one Teacher who did understand him.  Mrs. Hale came to his open house & I could see the respect in his eyes and the adoration in hers.  I’m so thankful she was there for him in HS.  This young man is unique in every way & I adore him.  I have been blessed to have him as the 2nd child.  He is the one I experience everything last with.  I am so proud of that.

Now, before you think – son call your mom.  I have to say it’s not his fault.  He is at boot camp for the US Navy.  I’m hoping that they will allow him a phone call on Mother’s Day so that I may hear his voice but, if not I’ll hold on to the memories before and that will suffice and push me through.  However; I think those who are in charge have mothers and know their mothers would say – let them make the call 🙂  I have been blessed 3 times while he was away for very short (no more than 2 minute) phone calls.  Most of it was scripted and we didn’t really get to talk.  He spoke, I listened.  The first call was horrifying for me as I could hear it in his voice – he hated it.  The 2nd call, I felt better as he sounded more relaxed.  The 3rd left me smiling because he sounded more like the Evan I know.  I am very proud of this young man and I can say there was no need to send a card or post anything on a media site.  I got what I needed & that was confirmation in his voice the last time we spoke that he GETS it.  He understands why I was rough on him and pushed him and while he hates it now, it will pay off in the end.  That he loves me and appreciates me undoubtedly.    Click below

You’ll Be In My Heart Always

 

With all the above stated, I must say, “it’s different”.  This is the first year where both of the boys are gone.  My nest is empty for sure but, they are not even in the same stateas I am.  It’s the first time for them both to be not in Indiana at the same time and it’s been a bit rough.  The house isn’t just quiet, my day is quiet, my phone is quiet (no text), the town is quiet.  You see my boys are very well known to my friends and we all spent lots of time together.  So, my friends would text and say – just ran into Eian or Evan.  So, it’s all a different feeling for me to accept.  TRUST me when I say I love the quiet, the no interruptions to my day, not being late, not tripping over the rug my son rolled up with his foot or being woke up after just falling asleep in the afternoon to answer a simple question.  I also must say that I MISS those exact same things.  I have every intention of embracing it all and sitting on the sidelines watching and waiting for them to call or contact me.  Instead of being sad or thinking how much things have changed.  I will allow their memories to make me smile & drive me as I enjoy all the little things life has to offer.  I’ll pack my bag and hold them in my heart every single mile of the road ahead.  For today for Mother’s Day – I am headed South for a full weeks vacation.

I’m also lucky enough to have a boyfriend who cares.  Who tries with everything he has to make the transition of the boys both being gone a little bit easier.  He checks on me, he sends me notes, text, brings me drinks, cooks for me and yes today he even purchased me a bottle of wine, a thermos, cactus and balloons with a touching card – even if I’m not his mother.  He’s a sweetheart and it doesn’t go unnoticed.

I have a beautiful, inspirational, passionate, caring, kind hearted and extremely loving and sensitive mother who is still a very big part of my life.  For that I am grateful!!  I worked some OT today allowing others to have time off for Mother’s Day & Bob purchased my lunch, such a nice thing to do.

I have always said I am not just Eian & Evans mother.  I wear many other hats and am my own individual.  Now it’s time to let that shine!!  I want to see the world and all the beauty it has to offer.  Happy Mothers Day to each and every one of you who give it your all and do what needs to be done.  Extra hugs to those who don’t have their mothers here to help them in their time of need.  Remember her, tell her story, share.  For our legacy is our children.

“Being a mother, it is the greatest gift”

“Many people are passionate, but because of their limiting beliefs about who they are and what they can do, they never take actions that could make their dream a reality” – Anthony Robins

“The most beautiful people we have known are those who have known defeat, known suffering, known struggle, known loss, and have found their way out of the depths. These persons have an appreciation, sensitivity, and an understanding of life that fills them with compassion, gentleness, and a deep loving concern. Beautiful people do not just happen.” – Elisabeth Kübler-Ross