Ode To Parenting

Parenting by Kay Dee (@i.am.kaydee)

Parenting is never boring! It’s the adventure that keeps on giving (even sometimes when you wish it wouldn’t. Lol.)  And if we’re receptive (have open hearts) we can learn so much from the experience.

Children, no matter the age, have this uncanny way of causing us to face ourselves…a humbling experience I assure you. They also have the ability to draw out of us a love so deep and so strong that the intensity of that love often surprises us.

Although there are a multitude of resources available on the subject of parenting, there is no one-size-fits-all formula for being the perfect parent. You will make mistakes. It’s just a fact. But, you will also do many things right. You will learn many lessons as a parent, so, be open to the process.  In parenting, you will learn to rediscover through your child’s eyes the innocence, the awe and the wonder of this world. You’ll also find that there are often times you have to:  eat our own words, apologize, be firm (though you may want to do the opposite), let go (as they grow), be supportive (even when you don’t agree), and spend thankless hours cooking, cleaning, driving (chauffeuring), nursing sickness, consoling hurt feelings or broken hearts, and so much more.  You will at times be too hard on your kids, and at times too soft (enabling).  It takes a while to find a balance.  Don’t be too hard on yourself.  At times, you will be underappreciated and overly stressed. You’ll wonder how you will make it through certain situations, but, hang in there.  Remember this is a marathon, not a sprint.

In their teen years, you may wonder what ‘alien being’ snatched your little love muffin and replaced them with a ‘meany-pants’ that you may often want to run and tackle for being mouthy or attitudinal. In these years you will re-learn what it is to love them unconditionally.  They will need that love (even if they act like they don’t). I promise your love muffin will return…but it will take some time, so, hunker down and gather reinforcements (i.e. other parents who can relate, fun hobbies to reduce stress, counseling, etc.) as you weather the teen years.  If you are fortunate enough to have an uncommonly pleasant teen, count your blessings and know that is not the norm. Lol. Teen years are an onslaught of hormones they’re trying to figure out how to manage, plus they’re learning how to assert their independence.  This is the season when much negotiating will go on.  Stand firm on some things, be more lenient on others.  Pick your battles.  Slowly begin to allow them to be independent people to begin to prepare them for young adulthood.

Lastly, sometimes there will be hurt or offense or misunderstanding between you and your children during this parenting journey.  But, there will also be opportunities to mend fences, apologize, talk, heal.  Take those opportunities! Do not let them pass by.  Your children will need you differently at different phases of their lives, but, they still need you.  Here’s to parenthood.  Much love!

~ Kay Dee

copyright 2018, ‘Ode to Parenting’ by Kay Dee for Life Together with Kaydee / and @i.am.kaydee IG

images: pixabay

Iron Sharpens Iron

xemenia and her mom 026.

“As iron sharpens iron, so a man sharpens the countenance of his friend” or one friend sharpens another.

I take this to mean – we need each other.  We can technically go through this separated from everyone, living like a hermit, but, what a lonely life.  We need each other to sharpen one another.  We can help one another.  We can strengthen one another.  Think about those friends, family members, teachers, mentors who have spoken into your life and made a huge positive impact on your life.  And think about those whose lives YOU have spoken into.   Sometimes we need that loving “kick in the pants” or that encouraging/uplifting word to keep going or to push us onto greatness.  Let’s face it my friends, you and I were made for greatness.  And that greatness takes on many forms.  It doesn’t necessarily mean ‘greatness’ in the form of great corporate success or Hollywood fame, though it CAN mean those things.  However, ‘greatness’ can be you quietly impacting others in your sphere.  Or greatness can involve being part of a grass-roots effort to incite change.  Greatness can be the way you raise your children to be responsible, loving human beings.  It can be a novel  you write that impacts its readers to make a difference.  Or maybe greatness can be you standing up for those who don’t have a voice.  But, be great! God has given you the ability AND he has given us community.  Let’s sharpen one another and move forward to impact the world, showing the love of Christ not only through what we say but how we live, and more importantly, how we love. Blessings.

Quote – Proverbs 27:17
Photo Credit – HERE

Open The Book

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You can look at people every day and you don’t know their story. You can look at people and assume things about them from the way they look, dress, talk…but you really know nothing about them. At some time or another, we all have probably been guilty of judging a book by its cover instead of opening the book to get to know the person as they actually are.

Today, as I went to the break room at my job to get some hot water for tea, there was another young lady getting her morning beverage as well. She always has a friendly smile and we always say ‘hello’ to each other whenever we see one another. What did I assume about her? Just that she was another person who works in Customer Service and makes an average living, etc. What didn’t I know? She’s has an incredible story! Let me explain.

We exchanged pleasantries, each asking how the other was doing. She said, “Could be better, but God is good.” To which I replied, “Amen,” and said a few other words, then I proceeded to leave the break room. Upon my exit, I felt the urge from God to go back in. Why had she said, “Could be better”? God impressed upon me to inquire. I had felt such urges before, and I’m not happy to report that although sometimes I have obeyed, sometimes I have made excuses to avoid such interactions (telling myself maybe God isn’t nudging me, and maybe I’m just making this up, or…’eh, it won’t be a big deal, I’ll see her again later’). Today, thankfully, I obeyed and went back into the break room under the guise of getting something from the cupboard that I had forgotten. I asked her, “You said ‘could be better’, how come?”. She informed me that she had a cold, but, also that she had been going through some major things in her personal life over the last few months. Her daughter had been in a car crash with one fatality. The other girl in the vehicle was thrown from the car upon impact and died. Her daughter, however, came through the ordeal only having to have some plates inserted in her ankle, but, otherwise she is fine and back to work. Her son recently got robbed, stabbed seven times and shot. He survived. He’s doing well now. However, a friend of her son’s recently got shot in the head and died. She said, every time something happened she PRAYED. And whenever she feels the unction or urge, she prays and “God is faithful.” She said that she didn’t understand how people could be without a relationship with God today’s day and age. She reiterated that every time she prayed, God was faithful to hear and answer her prayers. And that He never allows more testing or trials in our lives than we are able to bear at that time. If it weren’t for the trying times, she said, how could we fully appreciate the good times. And she mentioned that though her job was very stressful, how much of a blessing it is to even have a job in these economic times. She concluded, “Since you asked how I was, I just wanted to share that testimony with you.”

Wow! Wow! Wow! She didn’t know how much she was speaking to me. Though I have not been going through physical trials so much as relational and emotional trials involving family and other life situations, I could totally relate. I was immediately ashamed of the complaining that I’d been doing. She touched on everything I feel that God has really been trying to get through to me recently. TRUSTING that He’s in control and knows what he’s doing. Though difficult times come, and they do, He will not allow more upon me than I am able to bear, with His help. And even regarding my job (I’d prefer a new one), at least I HAVE A JOB in these times. Many people do not. I am able to provide for my family. I have everything I NEED. Notice I said “need” not “want”. God provides some “wants” as well, but, always makes sure, when we are in relationship with Him and trust Him, that we have everything we need. And sometimes, He even blesses us BEFORE we get to know who He (God) really is…or even BEFORE we believe in Him. And He really does know the best TIMING for things we’re asking and waiting for. He IS faithful. Completely and utterly. Amen.

If you don’t believe in God, I’m not trying to make you. You are allowed to believe as you desire. But, I will tell you from my own personal experience…He’s real. And I pray that one day you get to know and love Him. It’s worth it.

Toodles! 🙂 ♥

“Open The Book” © KD Corner 2013 – All Rights Reserved

Photo Credit – HERE

Being Human

Isn’t being human fun? Haha. I know some of you rolled your eyes…and others laughed. Define “fun” you say. Well, let’s just say that being human is definitely an adventure. We are unique and complex beings.  We are able to experience the world physically and emotionally.  We’re able to interact with others and express thoughts, ideas and feelings in various formats.  We’re able to create things.  It’s really quite amazing! What’s not fun about being human?  Disappointments, death, hurt/pain, sadness.  But, without the yucky parts of life, it’s harder to truly appreciate when things are really good.  When something good happens, you feel joy, relief, elation, etc.  Whether  you realize it or not, you mentally compare the good moment/experience/event to the bad one(s), and you’re extra thankful for the good.  Life is full of challenges.  Situations are challenging.  People are challenging.  Sometimes there are misunderstandings. Sometimes there is blatant harm.  But, whatever you’re going through or whatever you’ve been through, please oh please, allow it to make you better, stronger, more patient, more loving, more COMPASSIONATE, a better listener, a better giver, etc.  Bless others. 
 
To inspire you, I recently saw Alicia Keys perform a song on Katie Couric’s daytime talk show (I couldn’t find this clip but I found another performance).  The song is called “Brand New Me”.  It’s on  her new album “Girl On Fire”.  The song stopped me in my tracks.  This melancholy melody blossomed into a chorus of strength.  It seems to be about coming out of an unhealthy relationship, but, can be related to other things as well.  Please take the time to read the lyrics below and listen to the song here –> “BRAND NEW ME” (note: She does a piano solo at beginning.  If you want to skip this, the singing starts at approximately 2:50 minutes)
 
Brand New Me – by Alicia Keys
 
It’s been a while, I’m not who I was before
You look surprised, your words don’t burn me anymore
Been meaning to tell you, but I guess it’s clear to see
Don’t be mad, it’s just the brand new kind of me
Can’t be bad, I found a brand new kind of free
 
Careful with your ego, he’s the one that we should blame
Had to grab my heart back
God know something had to change
I thought that you’d be happy
I found the one thing I need, why you mad
It’s just the brand new kind of me
 
It took a long long time to get here
It took a brave, brave girl to try
It took one too many excuses, one too many lies
Don’t be surprised, don’t be surprised
If I talk a little louder
If I speak up when you’re wrong
If I walk a little taller
I’ve been on to you too long
If you noticed that I’m different
Don’t take it personally
Don’t be mad, it’s just the brand new kind of me
And it ain’t bad, I found a brand new kind of free
 
Oh, it took a long long road to get here
It took a brave brave girl to try
I’ve taken one too many excuses, one too many lies
Don’t be surprised, oh see you look surprised
Hey, if you were a friend, you want to get know me again
If you were worth a while
You’d be happy to see me smile
I’m not expecting sorry
I’m too busy finding myself
I got this
I found me, I found me, yeah
I don’t need your opinion
I’m not waiting for your ok
I’ll never be perfect, but at least now i’m brave
Now, my heart is open
And I can finally breathe
Don’t be mad, it’s just the brand new kind of free
That ain’t bad, I found a brand new kind of me
Don’t be mad, it’s a brand new time for me, yeah
 
Toodles ♥
 
 Image courtesy of stockimages / FreeDigitalPhotos.net
 
© “Being Human” by KD Corner 2012

A Gift

Hi y’all! First I want to thank all of you for the LOVE and support you’ve shown me over the past several days. I’m truly honored that so many of you responded with words of affirmation and encouragement to my most recent post.  I feel so blessed.  Today, I want to stay in the vein of thankfulness by talking about a Gift.  Let me explain.

I believe it is a Gift to be able to be a part of this blogging community. But also, it is a Gift to be able to express ourselves through writing. To be able to put words together in such a way as to convey thoughts, information or ideas to share with others is special. Each of us in our own way, has taken the leap of faith to begin sharing ourselves with the world through our words…through blogging.  Do you remember when the idea to blog became a reality for you? That day you decided to “go for it” and “see what happens”…. You entered the blogosphere with your very first post.  You may have wondered if you’d even get a response or reaction.  You wondered if anyone would care to read what you had to say.  Or maybe you are using blogging as a way to work through a difficult situation. It’s a release for you, somewhat cathartic.  Whatever got you here, I’m sooo glad you came.  I’m so glad to read others’ ideas, recipes, thoughts, encouraging words, stories.  You are amazing, brave, strong, creative…full of faith, hope, love, vigor, and so much more.

May we all see and know and understand what a great Gift we possess in writing.  It is both a privilege and a responsibility.

Toodles ♥

© “A Gift” KD Corner 2012

Image courtesy of fotographic1980 / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Make Time

Today’s post is short & sweet. Make time for those most important to you. So much of the time we are running around like chickens with our heads cut off, keeping up a very busy pace, always going-going-going. We go to work, meetings, social events, etc. But do we take time to make time for those most important to us…our families and those closest to us?

When your child asks you to play a game, or watch a show with them, or go to the store with them (a store you may not like)…. When your spouse, boyfriend, girl friend or best friend asks you to go to a certain event, or spend some time, but you’re not in the mood…. When your parents or grandparents want you to call or come by to visit, but, you’d rather not…

What do you do? Now, I’m not talking about going into any unhealthy situations. I’m talking about healthy, normal relationships. Are you going to look back on your life and say, “Wow, I wish I had gone to another meeting instead of spending time with my son/daughter.” or “That TV show was waaay more important than spending time with my friend/spouse.” Or “So glad I let my excuses keep me from seeing Grandma before she passed away.” No! Of course not.

Life is a gift and life goes by quickly. I just want to encourage you to make some time for those who matter most to you. Sometimes it takes a sacrifice on your part, perhaps doing something you don’t enjoy, but the other person loves. But when you look back on your life and the choices you made to spend quality time when it counted, you won’t be disappointed. 🙂

Toodles

Image courtesy of: FreeDigitalPhotos.net