A Bad, Horrible, No- Good Weekend Day

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I was looking forward to the weekend, until it just seemed to go not as I had hoped. And normally, two bad disappointing days could be just that. Two bad disappointing days. No biggie. But in today’s day and age where Covid has kept us from our normal lives, it’s harder to get past disappointment and sadness. It’s harder because we’re more isolated. And when I do speak to my friends, there isn’t much to say. I’m home most of the time raising my kid. Sometimes it’s easier to not talk rather than rattle on about the mundaneness of it all.

My daughter and I saw my parents outside for five minutes masked the other day, and could tell my mom didn’t seem herself, although she was happy to see us. Maybe this is just how it is when you are losing your memory. Whatever the case, it was just such a fleeting visit and how it has to be during these times. But it’s hard knowing I don’t know when I’ll be able to spend time with my parents again and how my mom will be cognitively at that point. My dad has taken over many things — things my mom once did. Noticing these things it’s like tiny moments of grief for me. Grieving I can’t call her and talk like we once did. Grieving I didn’t realize this would happen.

And as I write this, a family member is in the hospital recovering from a painful and emotionally difficult surgery. One that will take a long time to recover. Nobody can visit and honestly, right now is not the time to step foot in the hospital unless mandatory. The feeling of powerlessness that I can’t help this person is huge. The hope that finally, my family member will feel better after years of sickness, is what I’ve got carrying me through this, hoping she gets better. She’s a good person and desperately needs a break.
Some days I feel like the good people never get a break. We’re not appreciated. We’re not truly ever lifted up as we should be. But that’s how I feel today. Maybe tomorrow will be better. It’s a new chance. A new day. Maybe.

Today was just one of those days where I felt down, hopeless, upset and defeated. Where you’re down and just don’t know what to think anymore.
Then, I somehow hurt my back over the weekend and the pain radiated to my hip, making me feel a bit queasy. However, I pushed through and did everything I had to do today not asking for help once and I ended up paying the price feeling worse at the end of the day.
In the end, a heating pad, meditation, some ice cream and one of my favorite Curb Your Enthusiasm episodes, were my go- to’s to try and help me feel a little less down and a little less discouraged in mankind.

Did it work? Maybe. Not really. Not sure. That’s ok. Maybe I don’t know how I’m really feeling.
One minute, I’m grieving my daughter’s lack of normalcy and the next I am thankful for being healthy. A sore back is something I can take care of.
Another minute, I’m thankful for the good people in my life, and the next I am doubting my worth.

But they say it’s darkest before the dawn so I’m just going to hope things get better. The reality is nothing is permanent. Everything changes. At some point, there will be light! Meditation teaches us impermanence. Nothing stays the same. This moment is different than the next.

Breathe Deep,

Laura

6 Tips to Help You—and Your Family—Sleep Better During the Pandemic

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If your family’s sleep habits have been out of whack since the COVID-19 pandemic began, you’re not alone. Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the stress brought on by an infectious disease outbreak can lead to changes in sleep patterns, difficulty sleeping, and worsening of mental health conditions.

As a single mom, I can tell you first-hand that getting a good night’s sleep has been a real challenge for me these last seven months. There were many times I’d wake up in the middle of the night with worry and then struggle to get back to sleep. (Thankfully, my daughter’s sleep has remained mostly stable, with a few nights here and there of tossing and turning due to anxiety.)

Read More: 6 Tips to Help You—and Your Family—Sleep Better During the Pandemic

Peaceful Slumber,

Laura

Forgiving Yourself Is As Important As Forgiving Others

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Growing up with parents coming from two different religious backgrounds has so many pluses. One is it has made me more open to others’ viewpoints. At the same time, I don’t feel aligned with any religion really. I do find both Jewish and Christian traditions interesting and meaningful. So, I am spiritual but I’m not religious.

But for the first year ever, I thought about what Yom Kippur really means. Asking for forgiveness for sins and forgiveness of others. Supposedly, it’s the time of year where G-d decides your fate and therefore, you’ve got to make amends, and fast.

I thought about who I would apologize to, however anyone I may have wronged I’ve certainly apologized to. And if there’s anyone out there I offended, well, I am truly sorry!

But I think the person I am most sorry to is myself. For being so hard on myself.
The way I’ve talked to myself and about myself.
The way I’ve judged myself and compared myself.
The way I’ve doubted myself and criticized myself.
The way I talk to myself is most often, much harder than how I’ve talked to anyone else!
It is like I’m in some competition where the goals to be fabulous are so high and not obtainable that I beat myself to death for not being enough.
But if there is one thing I am, it is tenacious and persistent. I try so hard to be my best self. To be better. To do better. Be a better mom. Person. Partner. Friend. Worker. Etc.

Here is what I don’t do: give myself a break. Be kind to myself. Compliment myself. Believe in myself.

So here is a huge apology to myself for being so bad to myself at times.

Lovingly,

Laura

4 Things Thoughtful People Always Do

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There are certain things that thoughtful people—friends, lovers and family members — do on instinct and also, well-crafted thought. It’s very easy to tell when someone is particularly thoughtful: that person makes us feel very cared for and loved. Special. We feel safe and also, able to be our true selves, vulnerable and all, when someone is so thoughtful.
Here’s why:

Thoughtful people take action considering your feelings first.

Someone who really cares about you doesn’t make a move without considering how you might feel first. This is the person who knows how nervous you get when going to the doctor’s and in turn, calls you before and after an appointment.
The thoughtful person delivers both good and bad news in a way that considers the other person’s potential comfort level and response first.

Thoughtful People Love to Show You How Much You Mean to Them.

Thoughtful people enjoy expressing their feelings for you whether you’re their best friend or their spouse. When your birthday comes up, that person will be the first to plan a celebration for you. When you get a promotion at work or accomplish a goal, your thoughtful person will be right by your side to celebrate you. And if times are tough, that same person will be there to hold your hand and tell you how much you mean to them.

Thoughtful People Know Their Strengths and Weaknesses As Much As Your Own.

Thoughtful people know their own limitations, as well as the things they excel at. They are able to create a good network of people that complement these strengths and weaknesses, and they are very aware of their loved ones’ flaws and good traits.
In the same vein, they never make their loved ones feel bad for these flaws but instead, help the people they love to get stronger each day and also, support their friends, family members and romantic partners, knowing that somethings are harder for them than others.

Thoughtful People Pay Close Attention.

Thoughtful people are very attentive. They remember things about the ones they love, and try to tune in to their partners and friends emotions and feelings. They work hard on their listening skills. Let’s be honest: many of us are not good listeners. It really is a work in progress for all of us. Thoughtful people try to listen and keep their eyes on the ones they love. They do their best to give them focused and genuine attention, rather than being constantly distracted.

Thinking, Doing, Loving,

Laura

11 Things That Make Me Happy During the Covid-19 Outbreak

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It probably sounds ironic to mention the word happy next to Covid-19, but if you’re home social distancing … you’ve got to find some semblance of happiness or you’ll go crazy. And that’s ok,too: losing your mind at times is pretty normal also.

With that said, you have to find the silver linings in all of this or you won’t ever be “ok.”

For me, it’s the following things:

Tyson Chicken

A friend brought me a bag of this crispy Tyson chicken, and I just love it. Even when I’m not hungry due to stress, I’m always in the mood for more CHICKEN.

Tea and a Good Book

I love chai tea and I love to read. These two creature comforts make me feel more relaxed.

Sweet Messages

My one friend always makes a point to send me positive messages, telling me I’m doing great taking care of my little lady or that he thought I looked great and am working hard during a virtual workout.

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Do Kids’ Sleep Products Really Work?

Photo by Dakota Corbin on Unsplash

From the moment your child is born, all you want is for your kid to just sleep. Not only do you desperately need some peace and quiet, but you also know that adequate sleep is key to your child’s growth and development.

So you do your research and ask other parents how they managed to get their kids to sleep—and you discover that there are a countless number of products designed to help babies and young children get the shut-eye they need.

But just how effective are these products? Here’s what you need to know.

Read More: Do Kids’ Sleep Products Really Work?

Hush Little Baby,

Laura

COVID-19 Should Make Us All Realize What Is REALLY Important

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Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash

No matter where you are in this world today, most likely your life is impacted by this scary novel Coronavirus. For me and my girl, we are socially distancing and homeschooling/working. It’s challenging and isolating to say the least, but we are not alone. For us in particular, lacking adult and child/peer contact is difficult. But it’s for the greater good, society and our health. It’s not a “should we,” but a “we must” kind of moment.

During the day like many parents I am sure, I get snappy or annoyed. I feel like I can’t really focus on anything or, like I need to escape. Single parenthood doesn’t allow that escape. There are no other hands “on deck,” to change that for me.

But one positive thing from all of this is how clearly this virus points out what is really important in life and what isn’t. After this is all said and done, consider how many of us will “exit” this part of our lives and enter the next stage as a different person. Yes, some of us may leave financially devastated, anxious and depressed, but hopefully  all of us will realize now what really matters to us in life.

Love. The people in our lives. Our health. Happiness (mental health).

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3 Things That Affect Whether Someone Trusts You or Not

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You may be a trustworthy person, but if you’re doing the following three things … your love interest and or partner may not trust you as much. It may even be unintentional completely, but small things can build up over time to affect how someone trusts you. If you’re unpredictable, not available or distant, you could end up causing someone to feel as if he or she can’t put all his or her faith in you.

Unpredictability

If you’re not reliable or can’t be counted on whether in general or suddenly, your partner may start to feel anxious around you. Instability doesn’t lead to trust and comfort. It leads to anxiety and distance.
Be consistent.

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Watching Your Parents Grow Old Is The Hardest Thing Ever

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Photo by Micheile Henderson on Unsplash

My grandparents died before I turned 2. I didn’t have the lucky privilege of having them around. So. watching my parents grow older is the first time I’ve truly seen people I love … grow old.

Recently, my mom fell and got emergency hip replacement surgery. Seeing her in extreme pain was horrible. Worrying about her recovery now– although she is improving– is hard.

No one warned me how hard it would be to watch your strong capable parents grow into more vulnerable people.

No one told me how hard it would be to sit and stroke your mom’s hair as if she were a child. Not the other way around.

Between work and caring for my daughter full-time, trying to get to my mom as much as possible has been challenging.

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What Are Your Real Priorities? Check Yourself (& Others)

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Priorities. We all have priorities in our life. When people tell me they’re too busy, I secretly add in my head “because it’s not important.” When people decide something is important, they do it.

The same goes for you. If someone decides you are important, he or she will commit to you. The person will make time for you. The person will want to be with you. The person will have no lame excuses  as to why he or she isn’t available.

The same goes for “things.” If being healthy is important, people will make time to be healthy. If being kind is important, people will be kind.

Actions delineate priorities. This makes it easy to see who really cares about you.

People who would rather be with you then be with many partners or alone, care about you.

People who say they’d rather be alone or with many people, don’t give a flying f*ck about you.

Friends who show up when you need help, care.

Friends who reach out and want to connect with you, care.

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