Stepping Out As Stepmom

I’ve being writing on Monumental Moms for a year and a half now, and I’ve managed to write about everything except one of the main challenges for me as a mother, wife, and woman. I’ve avoided writing about this topic, because I felt that it was unfair to other parties involved. It is one thing to write about difficulties or suggestions for my son who I birthed, or my husband who I married, because it doesn’t impact any others besides me and them. When it comes to be a stepparent, I tread very lightly, because that involves children that are not just my own and other adults. I would never want to offend or hurt anyone. I have also never wanted for either of my stepchildren to read something and feel troubled by it, so I have carefully tiptoed around it. 

This week, it has been heavy on my heart to write something though. Why? Well, because most stepmoms feel alone. We feel like we are fighting for rights to exist in  families that under-appreciate us and can often misuse us. Most mornings on my way to work, I talk to a friend who is also a wife and a stepmom, and we laugh about how we need a support group or some type of 12 step program. It’s a joke that’s loaded with so much truth. So, today; I decided to start my journey into peacefully and carefully walking into occasionally blogging about being a step mom as well as a biological Mom. I know there are those moms who believe that there is no difference between the two, and to them I say: lucky you. For most of us there is a difference. The difference is not a terrible thing, but a natural reality. A lot like Oranges and Tangerines, we enjoy the sweetness of each of them and they appear to be alike, but are nonetheless different.

I will be honest and say that I’m nervous, because I fear the judgement. Where I adore being a mom and rave about it in every post that I write, being a stepmom is a dissimilar experience for me. It’s often times full of stress and anxiety. I once believed that It was just me and my family, that all other blended families, somehow blended easier. To any mom struggling, know that they don’t. It takes both work and time, and still may never be perfect. With my introduction into this topic of step parenting today, I want to provide a few ways to cope and that I plan to discuss in further detail over time.  

  1. Remember that “You” matter too
  2. Pray ALOT
  3. Find some positive outlets for yourself
  4. Don’t take it personal all the time
  5. Confide in a trustworthy friend
  6. Cut yourself some slack

No one ever said it would be easy, but there is nothing that us Moms and/or Step-Moms can’t overcome!

Kristina – The Stepmom

 

Motivational Monday- Make it Monumental

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“Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart, all ye that hope in the Lord.” (Psalm 31:24)

Guess what today is…… it’s Monday!!!! No matter where you live, run and hide, or what you do; we all have to face the start of the week. Each and every Monday, the week is going to restart, that is just how the week works and therefore, how our lives are run. It is however, up to us to decide how we are going to deal with, each week when it arrives. I see people drag themselves into work every Monday, and dread it. They appear to hate work, and everything else that comes along with the start of a new week. I am sure that if Monday was a person, she/he would be depressed with all of the negativity that she/he receives! Monday’s aren’t that bad. Plenty of great things can happen on Monday’s, we just have to create the atmosphere for it to manifest its self. Here are a few suggestions for making Monday’s great again:

1. Pray as soon as you wake up! Prayer absolutely changes things.
2. Get a workout in. Start your week off right, by taking care of you!
3. Set a goal for the week and start working on it today!!!
4. Ban all negative thoughts!! Negative thoughts do you absolutely no good!

Monday, is like birthdays. It’s the birth of great new possibilities every week. We just have to decide if we want to take them or not. This week, I urge everyone to decide to make Monday’s great again!

“Success is to wake up each morning and consciously decide that today will be the best day of your life.”

Ken Poirot

– Kristina

Don’t Judg Me

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As parents, we all know that children can go from 0-10 in a matter of seconds. These kids have a way of pushing your patience and bringing out the worst in you by testing your limits, especially while in public! Kodie is definitely no exception to this; I think that he waits until we are in public to try me! One day I was putting him in his car seat and he was talking back, so I yelled at him. When I turned around my neighbor was standing across the street with his dog and I could feel his gaze and judgment! I waived and kept it moving, LOL.

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In my opinion, the people that are the most judgmental are the ones who are not in the same situation as you. The older people who are all judgmental haven’t raised kids in decades and maybe they have forgotten how frustrating the whole process can be. The people without children just don’t have a clue and think that their kids will either be perfect little angels or they have the misguided belief that they will be in control of the tantrums, outbursts, and the screaming. You can tell when you are in the company of other parent’s because they barely even look at you when you are disciplining your child in public. In closing, don’t let other people’s judgments and opinion’s impact you. If people are really concerned then they can offer to help you instead of judging you and your parenting tactics.
-Kristle (Kodie’s Mommy)

Momma’s Boys

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Hi, My name is Kristina and My son is a Momma’s Boy. Kristopher, is three years old and loves me more than anything else on this earth and the feelings are very mutual. He wakes up in the morning and immediately calls for me. If my husbands goes to him first, he will ask for Mommy in a matter of seconds. In the mornings when I drop him off to school, we have to share at least 5 kisses, 5 hugs, a secret and, and say I love you at least 3 times. He falls to sleep the best when he is able to lay directly on my skin and typically likes for me to be around him the majority of the time. With out question my son is a Momma’s Boy and I have absolutely no issue with it.

Despite popular belief, that in no way makes him weak, girly, or too attached to function on his own. The stereotype of a “Momma’s Boy,” is crazy to me. My son is one of the most sociable kids in his preschool class. His teachers have complimented him on how mature he is for a three year old (shares well, rarely throw tantrums, and follows directions well). He goes to playgrounds and plays with kids his age, younger and older without any issues. After dinner he places his own plate in the sink, and brushes his own teeth. He is also a pretty rough little guy, daring and adventurous. Where he is attached and loves mom’s presence, he is still extremely independent. Kristopher, enjoys discovering, fixing, and accomplishing things on his own.

I absolutely hate the stereotypes and negative talk about “Momma’sBoys.” How often do we hear negative things when people say…. Awwwwww, she’s a “Daddy’s Girl?” The answer is never! Society just eats that up. It’s great to be a “Daddy’s Girl, but bad to be a “Momma’s Boy.” I decided to create a list of a few great things about “Momma’s Boys!

1. They are gentlemen: My three year old loves to rush and open doors for me, and even to try to pull my chair out. He’s going to be a great husband in the future.

2. Empathic: He’s in tune with my moods. He knows before anyone else when I’m happy, or sad. “Momma’s Boys,” learn quickly to read emotions, because they watch their moms so closely.

3. Loving: “Momma’s Boys,” can’t help but to be loving people. They spend so much time loving their moms that they are just full of extra love.

4. Respect Women: Being raised by a woman, they often have great respect for them. My son believes that I can do anything. The pride I see when he looks at me makes my heart melt.

5. Gentle with Girls: I’ve noticed that as rough as my son can get, when he’s playing with little girls his size, he’s careful not to knock them over or run into them too hard or often.

6. Super Happy: Just as any other kid is, “Momma’s Boys,” are just as happy. Being a “Momma’s Boy,” doesn’t make them any less happy!

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I hope that this blog helps mothers of “Momma’s Boys” feel a little more comfortable in raising their sons. Ignore the myths and opinions of others and keep right on loving your son with everything that you have inside of you.

Kristina – Kristopher’s Mommy

 

Motivational Monday – Intuition

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I can do all things through him who strengthens me.

Philippians 4:13

I have always believed that womanhood comes with a gift of intuition. We as women seem to naturally have a sixth sense for knowing things that are often beyond our knowledge. Have you ever just felt something in your gut? Sensed something was about to occur and it does? It is something that we all appear to posses, but often ignore in ourselves. We will know something doesn’t feel quite right, yet go for it any way. We will sense something is wrong and ignore all the signs and look back with regret at the end. Or we will feel something is perfect and allow fear to convince us otherwise. Today’s post is about trusting your gut. I urge everyone to start paying that intuition just a little more attention. I’m not suggesting allowing it to run your life, but to allow it to have more of a role in it. Start trusting yourself and your feelings more and stop ignoring that inner voice attempting to direct you.

This week I encourage everyone to listen to themselves. I ask you each to take a moment out to sit down and listen to yourself. Try to figure out what you have been trying to tell yourself, but ignoring. Remember you have the power to change your own life. You just have to trust yourself.

I believe in intuitions and inspirations…I sometimes feel that I am right. I do not know that I am. – Albert Einstein

Kristina

5 Tips for Being a Happier Mommy

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As mothers, it is imperative to maintain a sense of self and find moments of peace whenever possible. It’s hard to find balance with full time jobs and busy schedules. I’ve compiled some tips that have worked for me when I began to feel stressed and overwhelmed.

1. It’s Ok to Say No-When you’re overwhelmed with kids, work, husbands, etc. don’t pile any extra stuff to your to do list. As women we tend to over extend ourselves by trying to please others. Sometimes it’s important to do what’s necessary but say no to things that aren’t essential.

2. Take Mental Health Breaks-Our mental health is essential to our well-being and it’s just as important as physical health. Sometimes you may need to take a sick day to focus on your mental well-being.

3. Don’t Exert Energy on Other People’s Business-It’s really important to mind your own business! It takes a lot of energy to consume yourself with matters that don’t concern you and yours.

4. Have Fun-At times it can seem like we are caught in a rat race! We are always busy and rushing. It’s important to still have fun. A happy mommy= a happy child. Our kids feed off of our energy and they know when we are stressed, sad, and happy.

5. Practice Gratitude-It’s important to appreciate what you already have before you can rise to the next level. You might not have as much money as you want or the job that you want but be grateful for what you have. Just think, some millionaires would spend their entire fortune to have good health or be cancer free. So if you have good health, it is definitely something to be grateful for!

~Kristle (Kodie’s Mommy)

Motivational Monday – Be Thankful

“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.”

1 Chronicles 16:34

There are days where we all feel like we are coming up short. In those moments it’s difficult not to dwell in the the things that we currently don’t have; however, those are the times that we have to be the most thankful. It’s easy to look at what you are missing, rather than seeing all the things that you have. It is imperative to remain thankful in life no matter what your circumstances are, because your thankfulness is what leads you towards positivity and the opportunity to do better. Thankfulness is a form of positive energy and a way of remaining humble and appreciative no matter what your circumstances are.

This week, take a count of all the great things that you have in your life right now. Look at the positive stuff you have coming up and make yourself a plan to thank someone who has done something meaningful for you. Above all know that you always have something to be thankful for.

Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.
Oprah Winfrey

– Kristina

Motivational Monday – Calling All Friends

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Most days we feel like we are running a race. Up early preparing the kids for school and then off to work we go in the mornings. Once we return home it’s homework, dinner, and time to hear all about our partners day. Typically the phone call that we planned to make to our friend has been forgotten and by the time we do remember it, it’s way too late to call and check on them. Once life gets moving, our friends sort of become harder for us to keep up with. We’ll play phone tag for days and plan girls nights that may get cancelled twice before we ever make it out. Where we used to spend nights talking on the phone, we can hardly fit 10 minutes in without someones kid having a meltdown and causing us to hang up. The reality is that we need our friendships, just as much as we need all of the other relationships that we have in our lives.

This week, call a friend that you have been meaning to call, but the two of you have just been too busy to catch up. Plan a brunch out with your college girls, or just a girls day in to just catch up on laughs. The goal is to not just plan the dates, but to stick to them!

“True friendship multiplies the good in life and divides its evils. Strive to have friends, for life without friends is like life on a desert island… to find one real friend in a lifetime is good fortune; to keep him is a blessing.”

– Kristina

Regain Your Control

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The other day I pulled up to my job and just sat in my car for a few extra minutes trying to get myself mentally prepared to enter the building. I sung along with the radio, read my daily devotional, and even wrote my FB post for the morning before getting out of the car. It was not that I did not want to go to work, but that I couldn’t remember the last time that I wasn’t doing something. As a wife, mother, full time employee, part-time employee, and daughter of a parent with health concerns life seems to always be going. No matter how many vacations I take or days off I get, I still always feel as if my light switch is clicked on. I’m sure that there are many other moms that can relate to this.

I was laid in bed thinking….. how can busy women realistically switch off? It’s easy to say take regular breaks, but breaks could break our households; especially for single mom. Many women don’t have time to walk away for even a day, so we have to find reasonable ways to steal ourselves small moments to have to ourselves.

Here is a list of a few ideas of things you can do alone:

1. Take a lunch alone
2. A mid day movie on your own
3. Find a yoga group to decompress at
4. Take extra time in the car between pickups and drop offs
5. Read a book for pleasure
6. Find a hobby you can enjoy on your own
7. Go for a walk
8. Window shop
9. Get a massage
10. Bike riding
11. Fitness classes
12. Take a fun class at Community College

If you noticed, all the above suggestions are things that you are able to complete on your own. That’s because it’s very important for you to find time to connect with yourself. We spend most of our day connecting with everyone else. It’s imperative to do things that we can do no matter who doesn’t show up, or agree with our choices. No matter how much time you have ladies, build in a little extra time for yourselves.

– Kristina – Kristopher’s Mom

Where There is Darkness There Is Always Light…..

“Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word happy would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness. It is far better take things as they come along with patience and equanimity.”- Carl Jung

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In a world with so much despair and darkness, why not be a light? If you pay attention to what’s going on in the world then you know that violence is at an all-time high. Natural disasters such as hurricane/tropical storm Harvey have wreaked havoc on Texas and we could go to war at any moment with North Korea, however, one of the great things that has come out of the devastation from Texas has been people volunteering to help others in need. I raise the question, why not be a light?! You never know how just a little positivity such as a smile or asking someone if they need help can go a long way.

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One of the keys to finding true happiness is being grateful and humble. It’s also a big deal when you have the ability to be happy for other people! You don’t have to dim someone else’s light in order for yours to shine bright. Why not celebrate other people’s accomplishments? It takes less energy to be positive and it makes you feel good versus being negative and unhappy. Instead of trying to compete with friends, family, coworkers etc. be happy for them and let them inspire you to reach your dreams and goals. Trust me, your light will shine a lot brighter when you glow from within.

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Life is stressful enough with being a woman, mother, wife, and employee or entrepreneur. Don’t put other people down, especially another woman, when you can help, encourage, and inspire them to reach their full potential. I want all of my friend and family members to do great things! Someone else’s success does not limit my success. Timing is very important and everything happens when it’s supposed to. Right now it might be someone else’s time to shine bright, but don’t worry your time is coming. Always remember to stay positive and shine bright through the darkness.

-Kristle (Kodie’s Mom)