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Mandee

Belief in 3 Words:  #LiveYourTruth

Belief in 3 Words: #LiveYourTruth

Hello there gorgeous. 

I am sitting in the Charlotte airport awaiting my connection to one of the most beautiful places on Earth.  Turks and Caicos.    This is actually my 2nd time heading to this gorgeous land and really the first time I'm coming with set intentions.  

This year has been an interesting year to say the least.  I put my business on hold because I wanted to be apart of something bigger than myself.  So I committed wholeheartedly to a conference in NYC. Needless to say, it wasn't anything what I signed up for and I knew it wasn't what I wanted to be doing with my time.  And honestly, it wasn't giving me that real life experience and ability to give more of myself to something bigger than myself, ya know.  So, I resigned pretty quickly after the event was over.  From the end of July on, I really took some personal time.  I picked up some hobbies that I totally missed out on and really thought about what it was that I really want to get out of my life.  And really the type of people I want to surround myself with. 

After about 6 years of trying my hardest to help other women use this blog medium to grow themselves and their lives, I decided to walk away from them.  Most of them, that is.  I found myself not able to enjoy blogging anymore and very jaded by many of the so-called 'mom blogger' behaviors and honestly, I wanted nothing to do with it anymore.  Nothing.  NOTHING.  Stealing products from brands at conferences (off their tables) was a bit of a tipping point for me.  Yes. That happened.  At the conference I produced.  And honestly, it is rather embarrassing when someone asks me if I'm a mom blogger and when I tell them NO, they start in on what kind of entitled - annoying - selfish people are in the mom blog space.  

And that's enough for me.  Totally enough.  In fact, I heard it yesterday while on a call with a brand I work with.  For many years I stuck up for them.  Told brands that mom bloggers are clearly just misunderstood.  That there really are amazing women in the influencer space that can really dig deep into the growth of a brand when they are used in conjunction with their digital plan. 

And here I am... Six years later already DONE with that.  After paying them nearly $50,000 for campaigns over the years - I won't pay them a dime outside of managing a traditional blog ambassador tour that they have to sign a contract to participate in.  I realized I was freaking nuts chasing my tail to pay women who only want to hurt me and not grow to be a better person within themselves.  

This year, I had a cartoon written about me by a blogger (if THAT's what you want to call her. She has posted TWICE in a year - one of them a full blog post blasting me in a cartoon she really actually drew.  Yeah.)  Others actually STEAL from me not once but twice.  The first time, I saw it happen and I internalized it as if I deserved it.  Yeah - NO.  The 2nd time, I knew that she had to go.  And a few others apart of their posse-who totally got off slandering me.  Making me feel like I was a horrible person. 

And I ACTUALLY worked my ass off for these pathetic women to totally torment me?  AND I PAID THEM MONEY TO DO THAT?  Yeah... NO.  No No no NO NONO. Never. Ever. Again.  I will not let another human being bully me into feeling like I deserved the pain and sadness that they gave me.  

I actually made that decision in July.  Right after that conference I resigned from.  And can I tell you since making that decision - my life has been filled with such joy.  SUCH JOY.  Happiness that I haven't felt in MONTHS.  Hell, years if I want to really go back in my mind.  I stopped chasing my tail for others and focused on ME.  On what really is important and what I HAVE to live with in my heart.  I WILL LIVE MY TRUTH.  I will be who I really am and not what others want me to do. I will forever not allow another person to dictate my heart.  NEVER.  I will not allow another person to bring up the past and use it against me.  It doesn't matter if it's my real life sisters or some evil wanna-be-bloggers who have hate in their hearts.  NO ONE WILL EVER MAKE ME FEEL THAT WAY AGAIN.  

So, my awesome and amazingly talented friend Meredith Sinclair who is one of those 'behind the velvet rope' friends has been such an inspiration to me in so many ways.  We've been friends for years and I've just watched this woman take off in everything she does.  She's a star contributor to the Today Show and she JUST so happens to be married to Jon...one of the amazing star producers for Oprah and the Own Network.  She posted something last week that really came at a perfect time.  She was sharing her proud wife moment with her talented hubby in NYC at the premiere for the show Belief.    Meredith is such a class act. And she really does have such an awesome story.  Be sure to grab her book that comes out VERY soon and visit her site where she talks about ways in life to live well played. 

“Belief” narrates this often-ignored but startling story: The age of top-down religion is over. That age is being replaced by an age in which even people who faithfully maintain distinctive religious identities are engaging in do-it-yourself spiritual journeys that often lead in remarkably similar directions of love, healing and justice toward a God (or gods) close at hand. *The Washington Post

You just read that quote, right?  That is exactly what I have done to move into this 'post-babies' life that God has given me.  With all the adversity God has given me - One thing has been consistent.  My JOURNEY.  And the truth in it.  

You see, I started this blog RIGHT after having Boston who is now 7 years old.  I blogged through the scariest time in my life.  A time when truth be told.... I wanted to die.  I didn't want to live.  And I went through the days begging my life away.  Waiting for night and darkness to set in.  This went on for almost 2 years, sadly.  Those two years trying every kind of drug on the planet till I finally said to my husband 'I have got to get back to the basics.  I want to go somewhere that makes me feel whole.  Gives me time to look at my journey to death and make it my journey to live.  

And that was the awakening for me.  That journey to a place in middle of nowhere Tennessee where I talked to cows on a ranch, colored like a child, got massages and mental exercises till that crazy-brain of mine was awaken.  And from there - I started to Live My Truth.  

Today I'm sitting in an airport waiting to visit a land that changed my thinking a year ago.  And I can't wait to see what this trip brings.  Aside sitting next to my crazy girlfriend Sandy who became my 'Mandee' in my adult years.  It's gonna be a trip.  

I promise to share here as I go along and remind you AND me to #LiveYourTruth.

10 Goals for a Better Life

10 Goals for a Better Life

 

Ok. Well, I didn't lie when I said that I'm going to make goals to move forward positively in my life.

So...humor me, k?  =)

These are things that I'm lacking the most and I really want to make it better.

1.  GET HEALTHY.  

I'm tired of saying 'lose weight'.  I did lose weight.  30 pounds.  A year and a half ago.  And that fell out and hit the dirt.  Seriously.  And it's not just that I gained weight.  It's that I'm NOT healthy for my family.  And damnit I refuse to become one of those moms that can't sit in the floor and play with their kid comfortably or one who can't chase after them outside as they play.

2.  UNPLUG.  

Refer to #1.  I've got 'blogger butt'.  Not only is it affecting my butt.  But it's affecting my family time.  I've done much better over the summer.  But I also want to make more time for friends.  Step away from hard work I've put into Real Mom Media and reap the benefits a little bit.

Wordless Wednesday - Remember

Ok. So I have a ton of words to share on here today.  But I wanted to share this pic.

I love Mandee. She's so amazing.

And I love remembering my wedding.

What a fairytale.

Feelings of Bliss

Here I am.

9:15 on Tuesday evening.  Central Time.

And I just ate a brownie.  DONG IT!!!!!!!!!!!

(That's what Boston says..I taught him that...instead of a bad word. Fun huh? haha)

DONG IT.  For real!!

I'm in TN...at Blissdom Conference.

I'm thrilled to be here.  It's my 1st blog conference.  And I have to say-it's about time!!!

My girlfriend Mandee came in to pick me up this morning...and we spent the entire day together.  We shopped.  And ate.  Shopped.  And ate some more.

Ugh.  I'm a bloated mess.  And the conference hasn't even officially began yet!

I swear.  I have GOT to get this eating under control. 

Ok-back to happy thoughts.

Yes.  Mandee was here.  I hadn't seen her in a year.  BAD. Bad. BAD.

But we had a great day.  Much needed for us!

Although...I feel really bad.  She was going to stay  the night in my hotel room-but because she heard that was bad weather coming...after we ate dinner she decided to head back home.  Yeah..I was a bit bummed-since I'd have loved to see her longer...but I also totally understood.  I didn't want her to get STUCK HERE.  (I mean, I wouldn't have minded it-but she's got a man and two kiddos to tend to!)

So she just called me.  And she's stuck on the side of the road. 

Bigtime DONG IT.

I guess the weather is bad in Kentucky.  I'm at the hotel-and it's like being in a bird house.  I don't see anything on the outside!

But we sure did have fun together.

I think Boston & Matt are having a good time too.  Eating ice cream.

This I Know.

I feel like I've been neglected this little blog lately.

Not really stopping my mind and business lately to really share 'me'. 

Or maybe I have and I'm just annoyingly emotional like my husband says! ha.

Thankfully I can do that.  I'm a girl damnit.  We all are.. some more than others, k?

Anyway.

Last week my best friend was in town.

She is a glorious woman. 

She, I can say proudly is the STRONGEST WOMAN I have ever met.

4 years ago, today... she was dealth with the hardest blow of her life.

Her husband died.  He had a stroke....and God asked him to come home.

God must have needed him more than she did.

Or.. God knew that if there was any woman in the world - that he had the most faith in - knowing she was strong enough to conquer and prevail... Mandee Coursey was that woman.

Once again.. God was right.

She was left with a 7 week old..and a 16 month old.

((This is what they looked like at that age))

As I'm sure you know, as a parent.  Being left with that is unthinkable.

A divorce is one thing.. but to be more in love than any other couple.. and losing your spouse...

And they were. 

I myself was this rediculously wild Chicago Radio Morning Show Host that partied my nights at Gala's - chased around with a hot little body (that at the time thought I was fat-DUMMY) hob knobbing with celebrities and a life that any 27 year old would love to have.

I remember the call.... it was the Friday before the Super Bowl.  My boyfriend (now hubby) was at the Super Bowl for work... I was on the radio at 9fm - in the studio by myself... when my cell rang.

I thought- what on earth is she calling me so early for??

And as I said hello - having no idea that Jim had a stroke 2 days earlier-and was on life support - I could hear it in her voice. 

She said with a quiver in her voice and tears in her eyes "Joey, Jim's dead."

I was dumbfounded.

"What do you mean?  I didn't even know he was sick?"

And.. well.. not to relive that conversation-that I hear so plainly in my ears right now-and tears in my eyes...

I jumped on a plane-rented a car-and was there by the end of the day.

She was surrounded with so much love... so many people that I had no idea she had known.. were everywhere.

You see.... Mandee and I have been best friends since college.  We lived together in Kentucky for the 9 months I was on the radio there - then I moved to Virginia... and she stayed.. she wouldn't admit it... but she met a guy.. (I didn't like that dude cause he was TOO OLD for her.. ha.)  Little did I know. She wasn't messing around.. She was in love with that 'too old' guy.

She later married him.  Now..mind you, when I say too old - that doesn't mean that in a few years-it would be his time to go.  He was 39 (I think) and she was 26 (I think-give or take a year).

I went on chasing my career being wild-jetsetting all over the country.. meeting stars-partying with my boyfriend-on the radio in a major market-all in my 20s.

She however, was doing the exact opposite.

She was becoming a housewife-living life with her 'real' best friend-and a mom. 

Tears run down my cheeks as I think about how selfish I was... I kinda shunned her thinking we were just 'too different' now... but that is always what she dreamed of.

Fast forward... to today.

It took her some time to move on... how she did it.. God only knows.

She has a 5 year old and a 4 yr old and they are cuties.  She's done one heck of a job so far.  She's been threw a few losers men.  But those are just experiences for her to find her new 'Jim'. 

She will never be able to replace Jim...but I know she will find someone who will grasp her beautiful children..and give them the father they never had.

So this I leave with you.

I am the biggest culprit to forget.. but when I see her smiling face-I'm always and greatfully reminded.

Love your family.  Love every. Single. Day. of. Your. Life.

No.  Live, Love, Thank, For every Single. MOMENT. of. Your. Life.

 

 

A good friend of mine-sent this to me this morning... loved every second of it.

Surely puts life into perspective, doesn't it?