What motherhood means to me

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Motherhood can start from as early as the womb.  From the moment you conceive and start taking the necessary steps to care for your unborn child the journey begins and continues long after they are born.

Motherhood is more than just giving birth to a child.  It is a responsibility that you often accept without knowing the full details of what is required and you do it anyway.  It is a promise that you will do all you can to ensure the well-being of your baby.

However, there are a lot of women out there who did not give birth to the children they are caring for.  Some of these women treat the children in their care with so much love and affection that they deserve recognition and appreciation for all that they do.  Whether the kids are through marriage, adoption or through mentoring – I want to tell you all a heart-felt thank you!

The world is a better place with people like you in it.  My sister has no kids at this time but the way she treats my kids you would never know that.  She is truly a beautiful person and I believe one day she would make a great mom. I want to thank her for all she does. I consider her a second mother to my kids.  I know she has their best interest at heart and that  means so much to me. We’re truly blessed to have her apart of our lives.

Those of you who aren’t mothers yet I won’t lie to you motherhood has its difficult moments but there are also the rewarding and happy moments too.  No one has all the answers and many of us learn as we go as well as through the guidance of the more experienced mothers around us.

Motherhood should be cherished and never taken for granted.   Being a mother has given me some lessons in patience, understanding, selflessness, sacrifice, unconditional love, forgiveness, responsibility and the importance of family.  It has also shown me how strong I am emotionally, spiritually and physically.

To all the mothers out there I want to urge you to keep supporting, protecting and working with your children. Don’t give up on them, love them and pray for them.

May God give us the strength, patience and wisdom to execute our responsibilities in a way that is pleasing to him.  May our children take comfort in knowing that we are always here for them.

Stay strong and blessed.  Thanks for stopping by. 🙂

Fuel Your Fire To Succeed

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Do you know what Oprah Winfrey, Stephen King, Richard Branson, Thomas Edison, Jay-Z and Steven Spielberg have in common? Let’s get to know them a little better first.

Oprah Winfrey – was repeatedly molested as a child. She ran away from home. She in her early teenage years gave birth to a baby boy who unfortunately died.  Although forced to endure unimaginable circumstances in her early childhood, Winfrey persevered.   She excelled as an honour student and eventually secured a full scholarship to college.  She is now one of the most successful and richest people in the world today.  According the Forbes, Winfrey is worth an estimated $3 billion.

Stephen King – had his first novel “Carrie” rejected 30 times by publishing houses. His wife encouraged him to try one more time and he was eventually able to get it published.   King sold over 350 million copies and even had it made into motion pictures.  According the The Richest, he is worth an estimated $400 million.

Richard Branson – despite the difficulties and challenges posed by his acknowledged dyslexia, Branson used his personality and business talents to become the success he is today. According to Forbes, Branson is worth an estimated $5.1 billion.

Thomas Edison – failed a number of times before successfully creating the lightbulb.  The exact number of tries has been debated but some say as much as 10,000 attempts. Can you imagine? His perseverance paid off and bought us not only the lightbulb but the phonograph as well.

Jay-Z -had big dreams to make it big as a rapper. Unfortunately, he had difficulty convincing record labels to sign him. This however, did not deter him in fact, he persevered and now owns his own record label.  Jay-Z is not just a rapper but a businessman who has investments in clothing lines, real estate, sports teams, record labels, and more.  According to Forbes, his estimated worth was $610 million in 2016.

Steven Spielberg – was rejected twice from the University of Southern California (USC).  Spielberg did not allow this rejection to crush his dreams. He went on to attend California State University in Long Beach.  USC eventually awarded him a honorary degree in 1994 and he even became a trustee of the university in 1996.  According to Forbes, Spielberg is worth an estimated $3.7 billion.

The commonality among these people was a burning desire to move pass the obstacles in their lives.  They did not allow a scarred childhood, disappointment or repeated rejection to prevent them from achieving the success they wanted for themselves.  They all chose to look beyond their circumstances and worked hard to secure a better life for themselves.

They are just a small number of successful people who overcame obstacles in their lives to be where they are today.  Some other people who persevered and came out on top are: Bill Gates, Albert Einstein, Jim Carrey, Benjamin Franklin, Henry Ford, Walt Disney and Sir James Dyson just to name a few.

They are proof that no matter how bad things might look in the moment; no matter how many attempts we might have to make to get it right – we can overcome the obstacles.  We just have to want it bad enough and we must work for it.

Our past will always remind us where we came from.  Some people however, choose to use their past as an excuse; while others may try to use your past against you or  as a means to discourage you.  Let us instead choose to be the exception – let us use our past as a motivator to propel us into greatness.

Don’t allow any negativity from the past or current situations to keep you from achieving your dreams.  Although our past may influence some aspects of our future it does not control it. We do! 

Whenever, you feel like giving up or you feel defeated remember some of these people we looked at today and all the obstacles and failures they had to overcome to make it. Never give up on yourself! Let their stories give you hope and fuel your fire to succeed.

Thanks for stopping by.  🙂

 

 

 

Helplessness

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For the past two days I have experienced some technical difficulties with my blog that had me going through a phase of helplessness.  This feeling  triggered other emotions such as frustration, annoyance and anger.

Some of you may know the feeling, that sense of there’s nothing you can do to fix the problem you’re facing no matter how hard you try.   That feeling you get when the people around you can’t seem to understand or fix the problem you’re going through.  The feeling of helplessness can pop up at any time and at any stage in your life leaving you stressed.

In my most recent dilemma, I sought technical support from various avenues because I was not sure where the problem I was facing had originated from – talk about frustrating! At one point, I was locked out and unable to use my blog and this had me very concerned to say the least.

I was eventually reconnected and this made me happy again.  I did not realise just how much this blog meant to me until the fear of possibly losing it.  It is an extension of myself that I am now able to share with people all over the world and I am very grateful for it.

That feeling of helplessness that I experienced humbled me because it reminded me that I do not have control over everything no matter how hard I try.  The good news is, I don’t give up easily!  At various points during this period of restlessness, uncertainty and fear – I had to talk myself down emotionally.

I had to take a deep breath okay a few deep breaths 🙂 to calm my thoughts and my emotions so I could think straight and not let my emotions continue to run wild.  After all, behaving like a crazy woman would not have resolved my technical issues so I had to be analytical, diplomatic and do some trouble shooting of my own until I got the results I needed.

Thankfully, it paid off but it was not easy.  I had to be patient, I had to trust and rely on someone else to do their job and do it well.  This experience if nothing else has reinforced for me a couple of things:

    1. Helplessness can only be overcome with perseverance.
    2. I will continue to back up my data regularly.
    3. Knowledge is power – where you don’t have the answers – look for it!  Seeking to understand the various aspects of my blog prior to these events made it easier for me to understand and follow the instructions given.
    4. Patience is key and thus doing things in anger and hastiness should be avoided when possible.
    5. Be your own emotional coach. Take deep breaths and clear your mind don’t let your negative emotions drive your actions. When no one else is around the only person you have is YOU.
    6. Don’t focus too much on the problem –focus your efforts and energy on finding solutions.
    7. It’s okay to not have all the answers.
    8. It’s wise to get help.
    9. Sitting back and doing nothing is definitely NOT the answer.
    10. See the situation as an opportunity to learn.

 

It feels good to be back. Thanks for stopping by.  🙂

Living in denial

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I close my eyes so I would not see

I cover my ears  hoping to drown out my fears

I stay silent not to seem defiant

I do not want to rock the boat

Where else would I hang my coat?

So I make myself numb as I listen to the beat of his drum

Maybe this state of  denial  is doing more harm than good

Maybe I should speak up and not just sit here like wood

This illusion, this fantasy, is so far from my reality

How many more sleepless nights?

How many more unnecessary fights?

I’m so tired of  pretending

I’m so weary from constantly defending

My pillow is no longer used for sleeping

It’s new purpose – to conceal my weeping

Things aren’t getting any better

Inner strength I must foster

To improve my life and make it better.

By: Cherylene Nicholas

 

 

Do you dare to laugh?

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Have you ever noticed that as adults some of us don’t laugh as much as we used to when compared to our younger selves?  Why is that?  Some blame “the pressures of life” for taking the wind out of their sails.  Then there are those who believe it’s because “we take life too seriously“.   What do you believe?

I recognize that as adults we have commitments, responsibilities, jobs, families and all sorts of other things that we have to deal with on a daily basis.  However, laughter is not the enemy.  In fact, as adults I believe we need to laugh even more than we did as kids because of all the added responsibilities we now have.

This brings me to my observations about being an adult thus far:

  • We are often frowned upon when we try to enjoy the little things in life and may have our actions labelled as childish sometimes;
  • We are not allowed to make mistakes as this is a privilege only afforded to children;
  • We are sometimes criticized when we try to ‘lighten up’ because for some this would mean that we don’t take life seriously;
  • Laughter it seems is a delicacy only for the young and carefree among us;
  • The people looking on at us and passing judgement need to laugh more than  we do.

Can you remember the last time you laughed so hard you fell off a chair?  What about the time you laughed so hard you almost wet your pants? Do you remember the time you laughed so hard you cried from laughing so much? It brings a smile to my face just remembering those moments hopefully it did the same thing for you.

Benefits of laughter:

  • Laughter is healthy.
  • Laughter is a stress reliever.
  • Calm your thoughts.
  • Helps you relax.
  • Makes you feel good.

Life can be tough sometimes I can’t deny that but it also has its good moments too. We should find joy in the little things.  Go to the amusement park, go on a fun ride, go to the movies or a comedy show (hire a babysitter for the night to watch the kids) just do something fun every once in a while and make it a “thing” that you do for you.  If you wish to share it with the whole family even better. 🙂

Life is too short for us to just go through the motions day after day.  Don’t let life’s challenges keep you down.  Free up a little, relax, create new memories and laugh every chance you get.

I dare you to laugh and not feel awkward about it.  🙂

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What lies beneath?

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This morning I find myself here thinking about people and how we can never really know someone.  What are you really thinking in that complex organ called the brain?

The eyes it is said, “are the windows to the soul” but they do not always reveal how much hurt, pain, resentment and anger a person is carrying around.  Many of us have learnt over time how to mask what we really feel and safeguard what we really think out of fear or embarrassment.

When I read the newspapers or look at the news locally and internationally the issue of crime seems to be a constant problem for all of us.  It’s clear that there are more people than we think out there with mental disturbances that cause them to hurt others but not all of them present themselves to the world the way they really feel. The version of themselves they choose to show society is different to who they really are behind closed doors.

Hence, sometimes you might hear a co-worker or neighbour of theirs say, ” He was always such a nice guy.  I had no idea he was capable of doing something like that.” or “She was always very friendly and helpful. I can’t believe she would do such a thing”

These are very scary realities for some.  The sad thing is more often than not by the time the truth about an individual comes out he or she would have either hurt themselves or someone else.  The teacher is not just a teacher; the priest is not just a priest; the kind old man down the street may not really be the “kind” old man down the street; and the student is not just a student.  I can go on and on but I won’t.

I say all this to say, that we can no longer take people at face value or make assumptions about them because of the positions or titles they hold or what we perceive them to be. People at the end of the day are still just people.  Regular, imperfect human beings with issues and challenges just like the rest of us.  No better or worse.

The times that we are living in make it unwise to blindly trust people and make assumptions about who people are because we really don’t know.  All we really know is what they choose to share with us. 

My aim today was not to scare you but just share my perspective on what is going on in society.  There is a lot we don’t know.  I honestly don’t believe a lot of us have the stomach for what is really going on out there. I know the little I read is enough to make me sick.

So please be safe and vigilant. Don’t take anything or anyone for granted.  Respect and value life!!

Do you agree with the saying, “what you see is what you get?”

I would love to hear your thoughts below.

 

Thank You

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I would like to take this opportunity to thank each and everyone of you for reading and subscribing to Living vs Existing.

I am often amazed by the global reach of this blog. When I log in and see readers from countries like USA, Ireland, India, Oman, Canada, Turkey, Portugal, Grenada, Singapore, United Kingdom, Switzerland, Jordan, China, Sri Lanka, Brunei, Philippines, Spain, Qatar, Nigeria, United Arab Emirates and of course Trinidad and Tobago I feel so proud and honoured.

What was only a dream for me has become a reality. Your support via your feedback and ‘likes’ help to motivate and encourage me to do better and be better.

Thank you for investing your time in me and what I have to say.  May God continue to bless us as we go through life not only learning but growing wiser each day.

May we find happiness in ourselves.  May we find the courage to pursue our dreams.

Thank you for being my inspiration.

Make today a great day!