Motivational Monday – Dealing with Difficult People

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This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.

                                                                 John 15:12

Unless, you are some rare person who resides in a secluded fairy tale land, you have encountered some difficult people. We frequently have to deal with difficult people in our offices, Churches, during our day-to-day activities, and even in our homes sometimes. Difficult people are anyone that drains you, has negative energy, and simple just makes basic things hard. One of the most common characteristics of difficult people is that it’s impossible to make them truly happy. Trying to please a difficult person can cause you a tremendous amount of stress. We will all have to deal with them in one way or another, so we have to each find techniques to handle them. When it comes to difficult people, the number one rule is to not allow your joy to be stolen. Negative energy has a way of transferring from person to person. Difficult people will turn your good day upside down if you allow them to; DONT!!! It is also important, not to feed their negative energy either. Smile, and be as understanding as you can. They made need to steal some of your positive energy.

This week when you have to interact with someone whose being difficult or negative, just be polite, and hold on to your positivity. Sometimes, people can be a little too negative. When you engage these types of people get in and get out! Don’t stay around difficult people more than you have to. Create as much distance as possible, if you are unable to keep your peace, or handle their chaos!

“When dealing with people, remember you are not dealing with creatures of logic, but with creatures of emotion, creatures bristling with prejudice, and motivated by pride and vanity. “

                                                                                                                               Dale Carnegie

 

Kisses and Smiles, Kristina

Guilt and Glass – Kristopher’s sight Pt 2

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Life is difficult, and has many twist and turns. Kristopher has had the privilege of learning this lesson early.  He has learned early in life, that we are all a little different. At such a young age, wearing glasses is different. Thankfully, he has taken wearing glasses like a champ! I don’t have to fight him to keep them on, he rarely takes them off, he hasn’t lost a pair yet, he hasn’t broken a pair, and he actually askes for them if we somehow forget to put them on him. Along with learning that people are different, he has learned a great deal of responsibility at a very young age. My son is a very rough and active little boy. I just knew that he would break 20 pair of glasses a year and lose another five pair, but he hasn’t. At night he knows to take them off and in the mornings, he will ask where they are. The secret is…. He needs them. His doctor told me that the moment he realizes that he sees better with them, he will wear them without any issues, and he has since week one.

It’s been easy, but I get alot of crazy questions:  “Are they personality glasses,” who puts personality glasses on a one /two year old? LOL. “Does he have a disability,” I’m still lost on the connection between him having glasses, and therefore having a disability! “Can he see with them on,” nope, I just put them on him to watch him walk into walls! I have learned that adults are special people. However, the question I never get tired of is, “How did you know that he needed glasses?” That question makes me smile, because it provides me with a chance to educate another parent, and potentially help another child. I first noticed that something was a little odd when Kristopher started crawling around. At about 4 months, I noticed that everything he wanted to look at, he got super close to, to see. It was concerning, but people told me that’s what all babies did. It nagged me a little, but I eventually let it go. At about 16/17 months while driving home from daycare, I looked back to admire my little one as I always did. He was staring out into nowhere, and it was then that I noticed his right eye shift further right, without his left eye moving. It freaked me out!!! I asked everyone if they had noticed it, but no one else had seen it. My family assured me that he was fine, and not to worry. Other moms just assumed that I was overreacting. I almost believed everyone, but the unsettling feeling in my stomach would not allow me to. About two days later, I saw it again. I couldn’t take it. I cried to myself in the car and called his pediatrician.

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Here’s what happened after that:
Step 1: Contact your child’s pediatrician

Your child’s pediatrician will typically be the main doctor that your child will see the first years of his/her life, and is familiar with an array of children issues; including vision issues. Our pediatrician gave us an immediate appointment and tested Kristopher’s eyes. Of course his right eye stayed perfectly aligned. No matter what the doctor did, he couldn’t break his alignment. I became EXTREMELY nervous. Not because I was embarrassed, but because I was afraid that he would recommend nothing when I knew that I was right. His doctor stopped, looked at the fear in my face and said, “Mom, if you saw it, it is there.” I wanted to cry and hug him at the same time. He explained to me that most children don’t receive vision correction until they are school age, because parents usually miss it. He said however, when it typically is discovered it’s usually a teacher or mother. He reminded me that no one knew Kristopher, as well as I did. He wrote me a recommendation for a Pediatric Ophthalmologist. I left the doctor’s office scared, yet determined.

Step 2: Don’t waste any time and research

As parents, we can be big procrastinators. We do so much daily, that we forget the basic stuff.  Please never wait when it comes to the health of your children. The first thing I did, was researched the recommended doctor. The reviews about his skills were phenomenal; however, the reviews about his office service were not. People complained of long waits and delayed appointments. I still called the ophthalmologist, because he was rated as one of the best. After calling 3 times with no answer, and then being told they could squeeze us in a month later, I was over it. Good or not, I couldn’t wait a month, and I’m very inpatient with extended waits. I started researching other good pediatric ophthalmologists in the area; I read a multitude of biographies and testimonies. Within about two days, I found the perfect doctor, and scheduled an appointment.

Step 3: Be prepared for anything

When going to appointments, set aside emergency money for prescriptions or whatever else may pop up. I had to purchase Kristopher a prescription to take home, because his eyes wouldn’t dilate in the office. We had to use the drops for a week, and it gave him an allergic reaction. I didn’t expect any of that to occur, but it had, and I had to roll with the punches. Kristopher was diagnosed as being severely nearsighted. His doctor informed me that he had probably never seen clearly, and that everything since birth has been a blur for him (I cried a million tears again). I asked if he would grow out of it, and she said that it was unlikely.  I was crushed and felt like a failure. My mind told me, that I had allowed my child to walk around without being able to see clearly for 17 months. I had major guilt.

Step 4: Congratulate Yourself

After, we received Kristopher’s glasses, I let go of my guilt and found the brighter side of things. I now think back and smile with pride. I am proud of myself for discovering this early, and even more proud of him for being such a good sport. It also helps that he is super cute in his glasses!

Kristopher’s Mom, Kristina

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(First time in glasses)

Motivational Monday – “Your Calling”

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For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Jeremiah 29:11

We all have something that we were made for, something that we are great at. It’s that one thing that makes us special, noticed, and appreciated. It seperates us from others, and gives each of us our own platform to stand on. I’m not referring to our talents, or the hobbies that we’re good at. I’m talking about what we are each called to do. I remember believing that I didn’t have a calling. Then one day, I stopped focusing only on what I wanted to do, and started focusing on what I was phenomenal at doing. I started paying attention to the things that I did that impressed others. I started taking heed to the areas others praised and complimented. Each of us has a calling. We each have that special gift that the world needs from us. That amazing thing, that is unique to us.

I know that our lives are full right now, but we can’t really live our lives until we have answered our calling. Write yourself a list of things that you enjoy doing, things you know that you are good at, but afraid to do, and things other people say that you excel at. Look for the areas that overlap. Try to determine what your calling is in life and start blessing both yourself, and the world with it. For those that know what it is, but are afraid to walk in it…. stop allowing fear to manipulate, and control you. Decide to take the step into the unknown and go. Find your way to living in your place of advancement and opportunity!

Whatever your calling is as a service, follow it- that’s beautiful.

– Hill Harper

Kristopher’s Mommy, Kristina

Tales & Tantrums OF A Toddler

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There is never a dull moment with a toddler around. These days, Kodie plays entire baseball and football games all by himself! He will start out playing football and finish the game with a home run, LOL. Sometimes, he will include me in the games but mostly in the middle. He will randomly yell for me to catch the ball, even if I have no free hands so I’m constantly ducking and dodging random balls. The toddler tantrums have definitely reached their peak! Toddlers and their tantrums go hand in hand. Lately, Kodie has been having tantrums about the craziest things!

This morning Kodie had a 30 minute tantrum and refused to walk downstairs because he wanted me to pick his blanket up off the floor. It was too hard for him to bend over and do it himself, LOL. I’m sure my neighbors thought that someone was torturing him, smdh! He screamed and yelled for me to pick his blanket up over and over again! I ignored him and ate my bagel and drank my coffee in peace, LOL! I was finally able to convince him to come downstairs for breakfast but guess what…? The blanket remained in the floor! Ten points for Mommy! I just refused to give in to his demands!

While I was driving on the highway last week, a tantrum broke out of nowhere! Kodie got upset because he was finished with his cup and wanted me to magically pull over and take his cup from him. I explained that I was driving and pointed to the cars. Well he still yelled and screamed that he was done with his cup while also telling me that I wasn’t driving but he was driving, LOL! He kept saying “No, I’m driving mommy take my cup.”

Lately, Kodie has been asking, no actually, demanding to go to the market. When I asked him what he planned to get from the market he said a football. After I told him that they don’t sell footballs at the market and they only food, he proceeded to argue with me and told me otherwise, LOL. I guess after he thought it through and figured out that I knew what I was talking about he said he wanted a peanut butter and jelly sandwich from the market!

Last night Kodie asked if I was hungry and I said sure. He said that he was going to make me some chicken. Once he was done cooking he said “here eat it”. I pretended to taste the items that were in his bucket and said “wow, that’s some good chicken!” He looked at me like I was crazy and said that it’s not chicken it’s a blanket, LOL! I said I know, but you said that you were cooking chicken! He said no I’m not cooking, so I said OK. Five minutes later he said “here taste this” I said “no, I don’t want it”, LOL. He then tried to force feed me with his wet nasty blanket that had been in his mouth saying “eat the chicken, eat the chicken.”

-Kristle….Kodie’s Mommy!

Motivational Monday – Respect

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This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.

                                                                 John 15:12

To truly respect others we must first learn to respect ourselves. Respect, is very important in the lives of each of us. You will notice that people frequently judge each other, on how respectful we are to ourselves, and the people around us. If we fail to respect ourselves, how can we expect others to respect us? To those that don’t feel that we deserve to be respected by ourselves or anyone else, know that, that is furthest thing from the truth. No matter how bad, or unpredictable our lives are at the moment, we must hold our heads high, because we are still each worthy of greatness, and therefore still deserving of respect. Respecting yourself should be your daily mission. Each of us should strive to think highly of ourselves, dress respectfully, and carry ourselves respectfully. A little respect, can take us a long way in life.

For those of us who struggle with respecting others, keep in mind that we are all human with flaws, and that each of us will make mistakes. Not respecting someone is basically saying that we view them as inferior. In our minds we have labeled them as undeserving of our respect, and we should do that sparingly. Granted, there are people that we will lose respect for, for good reason, but it is our mission to forgive, and to still remain respectful to everyone that we encounter. The respect that we show to others is a direct reflection of who we are inside. Always remember that positive people lead positive lives.  Monumentals, let’s be sure to treat ourselves, along with everyone else well, and with the respect that we each deserve!

“Respect for ourselves guides our morals. Respect for others guides our manners.”                                                                                                                                                                                Lawrence Sterne

Kristopher’s Mommy, Kristina

Kristopher’s Sight – Part I

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When your 5 year old goes to their eye appointment, and needs glasses it’s cute,  people see them in their glasses and say….. Awwwwwww, look how adorable he/she is. When your 17 month old goes to the doctors and needs glasses, cute is not what comes to the mind. When people see babies, and toddlers with glasses, they stare, and arkwardly ask what’s wrong?

This month a year ago, I found out that my 18 month old son, Kristopher had vision issues. He doesnt have the cute kind that you can just toss some glasses on him to read with, but the everyday, all day, no other option, but to wear his glasses vision problems. A problem that will need correction for a life time.

What I realized quickly is that, I didn’t know alot of other mothers who had experienced this. I would try to talk to some moms, but it wasnt much help. I knew that they meant well, however, it didnt ease my worries. I did appreciate the few friends that I shared it with, because they reassured me that he would be happier with them, that he would learn to wear them, and that everything would be fine. I was still left with so many questions, feelings, and worries.

The one person I spoke with, that had experience with this was my cousin. Somehow, out of everyone I forgot her. She hadn’t just dealt with this once, but multiple times with her young children, and the conversation with her was so different. She didn’t suggest that he would grow out of it, or say how cute he would be, or act as if ppl wouldn’t notice glasses hanging off of his 1 year old face. She told me the truth. She said yes, people are rude, and will ask ignorant questions. She offered pediatric ophthalmologist referrals in case I needed another opinion or more help, and explained to me the process that lead each of her young babies to glasses. Most importantly, she uplifted me as a mother. She told me that I noticed it early, and acted quickly. Her telling me that I was a good mom remimded me that, that’s what would help Kristopher wear his glasses proudly.

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A Few Terms to Know:

Nearsighted: when close objects appear clear, but far away objects are difficult to see.

Farsightedness: when far objects are clear to see, but close objects are blurry.

Astigmatism: Imperfection in the curvature of the cornea.

American Optometric Association

Tips for Moms Who May Suspect Vision Issues With Their Infants or Toddlers:

1. Act quickly: If you notice any thing out of the ordinary, or off about your child’s eyes or vision DONT brush it off, or be brushed off. You know your child better than anyone else in the world!

2. Make an appointment with their pediatrician: For small children you want to keep your pediatrician in the loop. They can often also offer great referrals, and wonderful insight.

3. Select a good Pediatric ophthalmologist: Having someone poke around an infant/toddlers eyes is not easy. It is often uncomfortable and unsettling for most adults. Select someone who is efficent, friendly, and patient. The more comfortable they have your little one feel, the better the exam will go, and the more they can learn about your childs eye sight.

4. Educate Yourself: Learn as much as you can about your childs vision, and have plenty of questions prepared to ask their doctor.

5. Talk to other moms: Speak to moms with experience. They can offer you information, comfort, recommendatons, and encouragement.

6. Educate your child: Explain to them the purpose of their glasses. Purchase books and find pictures of other children proudly wearing their glasses! You will be surprised at how much they actually understand.

7. Congratulate yourself: You got your child the proper help that they needed to correct their vision. Rather than stress over the issue, find peace in the resolution, and correction process.

Please check out Part II, of Guilt and Glasses, on October 27, 2016. I will discuss, Kristopher’s adjustment to glasses, his eye condition, and offer more useful infomation.

Thank you for reading,
Kristopher’s Mom, Kristina

 

Motivational Monday – Smile

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And work with a smile on your face, always keeping in mind that no matter who happens to be giving the orders, you’re really serving God.

Ephesians 6:7-17

There will be plenty of days that cause you discomfort and stress. There will always be people who attempt to devour your light. No matter what comes your way, never let anyone take your smile!!! I’ve always believed that the best way to improve your attitude, is to change your behavior. If you walk around frowning, how can you expect to feel happy? When you want to feel good on the inside, you have to make the adjustment on the outside. Smiling, is one of the simplest things to do, but also the most powerful. Smiling is good for both your mood and face. There are days that we all get to work and feel drained. However, the moment you walk through the door, put a smile on. It’s not phony, but just you deciding not to be miserable. Smiling can transfer positive energy from one person to another. Your smile has power! You never know what another is going through at the moment, but your smile could be just what they needed to keep moving.

This week, let’s pass on some good energy. No matter how down you feel, smile. When you see someone else frowning, remember to smile at them.  Smiling no matter your culture or language, is a form communication that everyone understands, and appreciates.

Smiling can:
Make others happy
Helps reduce stress
Increases confidence
Helps you live longer
Reduces wrinkles
Boost immune system
Makes you feel better
Helps to make new friends

“Let my soul smiles through my heart and my heart smiles through my eyes, that I may scatter rich smiles in sad hearts”

Paramahansa Yogananda

Kristopher’s Mommy, Kristina

 

Breast Cancer Awarness

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October is breast cancer awareness month. Cancer is something that we hear about all of the time unfortunately, it’s becoming more prevalent. Too many of us have been directly affected by cancer. The word “cancer” actually gives me anxiety, particularly breast cancer. This post has been literally a year in the making. I started writing this October of 2015 but couldn’t finish it. My mother was diagnosed with stage 3 triple negative breast cancer on June 22, 2015.

According to the triple negative cancer foundation http://www.tnbcfoundation.org/
It is now commonly understood that breast cancer is not one form of cancer, but many different “subtypes” of cancer. These subtypes of breast cancer are generally diagnosed based upon the presence, or lack of, three receptors known to fuel most breast cancers: estrogen receptors, progesterone receptors and human epidermal growth factor receptor 2 (HER2). The most successful treatments for breast cancer target these receptors. A Triple negative breast cancer diagnosis means that the offending tumor is estrogen receptor-negative, progesterone receptor-negative and HER2-negative, thus giving rise to the name Triple Negative Breast Cancer.

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This type of cancer is more prevalent in African Americans, is highly aggressive and more likely to reoccur than other subtypes of breast cancer. My family doesn’t have a history of breast cancer so for us this was a devastating blow! About a year and a half before my mother was diagnosed, one of her mammograms came back as abnormal. Upon further testing, she was told that she had calcium build up but there was nothing to worry about.

Fast forward about a year and a half later and she was diagnosed with stage 3 cancer. The plan was for my mother to have a mastectomy in her left breast after receiving chemotherapy. My mother went through 15 rounds of excruciating chemotherapy and it took a devastating toll on her body, but she handled it like a champ. She had just ONE more treatment left before having her surgery. On October 29, 2015 my mother was admitted to the hospital for “failure to thrive”, which means that she was extremely weak, exhausted, and all of her levels down to her sodium, were extremely low. After she received a blood transfusion and fluids, she started to feel better and was her usual talkative, busy-body self (LOL). Unfortunately, a few days later she went into respiratory distress.

The doctors performed X-rays, biopsies, chest x-rays, bronchoscopies-you name it and they tried it. My mother was eventually moved to another hospital that had a lung specialist and lung specialty unit; however the cause of her lung decline remained unknown. My mother lost her battle with this horrible disease on January 5, 2016. She was 57 years old. Although this has been an extraordinarily difficult year for me and my family, I’m hoping that my story can at least spark some awareness in someone.

Too often we are preoccupied with the future and focusing on trivial things that in the end really don’t matter. As mothers, wives, and women in general we tend to put everyone else’s needs, wants and desires before our own. It’s important to be in-tune with your body, perform your own breast exams and mention anything that may seem abnormal to your doctor.

~Kristle (A monumental mom like my mom!)

 

 

Motivational Monday – Bad Habits

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Sorry, for the delay Monumentals!!!

To put off your old self, which belongs to your former manner of life and is corrupt through deceitful desires, and to be renewed in the spirit of your minds, and to put on the new self, created after the likeness of God in true righteousness and holiness.

Ephesians 4:22-24

The hardest habits to break are the bad ones, they are usually the ones that we have an abundance of, and that we are the most attached to. It’s difficult to break a habit that you have been repeating over, and over again. We all have a few bad habits, wether they are eating poorly, not exercising, over spending, lieing, selecting the wrong significant others, biting nails, smoking, drinking, cursing, procrastinating, etc. Bad habits, exist in each of our lives. Every year, New Years arrives and we start making resolutions to break those habits; as if New Years holds a magical power over our habits. The only person that can break them, is ourselves. We have to stand up, and decide to live better, and to be better. Habits, hold us hostage. They force us to run in the same circles, and can prevent us from living to our full potential.

This week, let’s write down our habits and begin to elimintate them one, by one! We have no need to wait until the new year, our birthday, or until the holidays are over. We must start today. To start, we must set a plan, commit to it, and starting working at it each day.

“Your net worth in the world is usually determined by what remains after you’re bad habits are subtracted from your good ones.”

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Kristopher’s Mommy, Kristina