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Common Ground

I ran across this photo for an assignment I had to do for school last week. And it really spoke to me.

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My husband said, “you should write something about that.” And my initial response was, “no.” It was too deep. Too deep for those who wouldn’t quite understand. And that frustrates me sometimes. I kinda expect more from people. I forget sometimes, that they just don’t get it. Or perhaps, they can’t. But, as I thought more about it, for women like me, we ABSOLUTELY get it!

I had a speaking engagement last week. And afterwards, so many women came up to thank me, and express their condolences, and tell me that they knew exactly what I had went through.

And that’s when it clicked, I have to share it…there is such common ground that so many of us stand on. We have to learn to be there for each other; try to help someone, even if it’s just one.

So, I was this photo.

My body made me feel insufficient. I was not capable of doing what God designed me to do. I had failed my children.

And I sat in this “funk” until I found some women that stood on common ground with me. And we talked, and shared, and cried, and encouraged our way through SUCCESS! Yep, after being broken, we successfully carried AND delivered our rainbow babies!

This is just to say, that the Potter can too, put you back together again!

And, you are NOT ALONE. Medically, I can’t help you. I can’t advise your course of treatment. BUT, I can tell you what I did, how it was for me, and how I made it through! That’s what SHE CAN is all about! Sisterhood.

Be Blessed!

-Stacey

 

 

 

 

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Check Your Fruit!

14361441_10207303657973731_5800048426670530859_oI jotted this in my notebook about 10 months ago. I am compelled to share today.

My father lived to work! All his life he has. And he is hurt, and broken, and saddened that he is no longer physically able. And I continue to watch this generation of “entitled-ers” sit back and EXPECT to live with their parents, so that THEY can continue to take care of their able-bodied selves. OR expect the government to continue to HANDICAP them with the BARE NECESSITIES. OR there are even the ones that feel like “dammit, I want, so I’m just gonna take it” from someone else. It’s so frustrating.

But, we can’t just blame them. We have to blame us too. What are we doing, or not doing differently than what our parents did? My God, I know it’s easy to blame social media, the internet, blah, blah, blah; the world is different, it’s a new generation…I GET IT!

Here’s the thing though folks, THE MESSAGE DIDN’T CHANGE! Let’s change the method, let’s get on their level, let’s understand where they are coming from, BUT DON’T STOP PARENTING! You can not tell me that, that’s not what has happened.

This microwave generation man…everybody wants it NOW. Your half-grown children expect to live like they did at their parents’ house…have what they have (furniture, food, cars). The parents wanting what the Jones’ got going on in their house not knowing that they worked and saved all their young-adult life to obtain it. Seriously, are instant potatoes better than homemade? If you think so, you probably have never had any, and oodles n’ noodles are a delicacy.

Bottom line…

The reward is so much greater, when you’ve done the work yourself. When you’ve earned your keep. When you can say “I did that!”

Parents: Check your fruit. Your children are a reflection of you.

-Stacey

Don’t You Hate, Haters?

Well, I don’t “hate” them, but I become quite frustrated with them.

First of all, I kinda hate the term “hate.” Simply because most times the correct word to use, is JEALOUS. Now, sometimes the folks that claim they have haters really do not have them at all, trust!

Sometimes folk simply don’t like your ways, your clothes, the food you post on social media, that hairdo, or YOU in general. Everyone is just not gonna like you. That doesn’t mean in any form or fashion that they hate you. They actually probably could care less that you seem to need someone else’s validation.

Buuuuuut…

Every now and then, you will run up on that one that finds themself jealous of you. And there’s two sad parts to that. One, it’s usually someone that is really close to you, and two, the majority of the time they have nothing to be jealous about.

People get jealous of what others allow them to see.

Most times, they have absolutely NO CLUE what it has taken for you to have what they think they want.

That cliche about “the grass being greener on the other side…” Well exactly! A higher water bill, right? Or more maintenance? Maybe even a lawn care servicer?

Unless you live in someone’s home with them (cause being around them all the time is not enough) you DON’T HAVE THE FIRST IDEA as to what they are going through; why they are the way they are nor what they did to get there.

You don’t know how alone they feel even when they are surrounded by others; how they are afraid to even leave home to go to the grocery store; that their house is clean because it makes them panicky to be out of order; how up-keeping their appearance is a struggle because they barely want to shower; how their loving husband is frustrated with them because they are numb to love and intimacy; how every cough, ache, or fever from their children makes them think the worst; that regrets of their past hunt them daily, YOU DON’T KNOW!

Quit being quick to judge these people. Quit being quick to think negatively of them instead of releasing positive vibes into the universe on their behalf.

Stop YOUR hate.

You may just see things change for you. You may just receive the desires of your heart.

Let’s share and spread LOVE. Then we all win.

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Forever In My Heart

            Blood in my underwear is not what I anticipated when I excused myself from our executive meeting to go to the restroom. Having to pee for my hundredth time of the day from the extra pressure on my bladder is all I’d expected. It simply meant that the life knitted in my womb was growing. My prior pregnancy had terminated with a seven week miscarriage and I was nearing my fifth month this time around. I was assured that the risks of that happening again, significantly drop or go away even once you make it through your first trimester. So I knew that we were out of the water with that, but was baffled of my findings and wanted to get it checked out right away.

            I threw on my Dreamgirls soundtrack that I, and my peanut too because it was active when I played it, enjoyed and drove to meet my husband at my doctor’s office. We arrived shortly thereafter and sat in the cool-colored, warm waiting room filled with baby-bumped mommies for my turn to be seen. I was called back by the nurse practitioner, whom I had just seen the previous week, into the much more confined and medicinal space of the exam room. “Alright, Stacey,” she said playfully, “you probably have a UTI, get up on the table.” I uncomfortably crunched around on the parchment-like, generic paper roll covering they use. The nerves had set in and I wasn’t much in the mood for the puffy, white clouds that adorned the sky blue ceiling above me, so I looked at my concern-faced husband sitting in the chair to my right.

            There was no pain at all when she slid the cold metal speculum inside me. The violated experience that many women often feel presented itself, but no pain. Within seconds she quickly withdrew it and slid backwards on her stool away from the table. She stared at me, emotionless and on pause and finally mustered, “I have to go get Dr. Hirata.” She left in an instant and I froze in time while nurses, doctors and mommies shuffled up and down the hallway outside the door.

            My doctor arrived right away alongside the nurse practitioner with a wheelchair in tow. I was being admitted into the hospital. Nervous and shaken, I looked from one face to the other while they pushed me to the other wing of the building and attempted to make sense of what was being explained to me in order to save my baby. Completely off my feet, in bed, upside down, stitching me closed, were the instructions given that played over and again in my mind, unintelligible and barely comprehensible.

            After the seventh stick, the two hospital nurses were finally able to find a good vein to start the fluid drip. I watched in terror as they prepared the urinary catheter with hopes that they were more successful in this endeavor. I tried to clear my mind, but it was without success. I was just left to lie there in that bed; head down, feet up, with multiple lines and cords attached to me unable to do anything on my own, like a marionette anticipating its puppeteer. I prayed knowing that God is able.

            That next morning I yawned with exhaustion as I laid beside my husband who had now joined me in the bed. All through the night nurses had checked my stats and the baby’s heartbeat, which was healthy and strong. My doctor peeped her head in the door with a good-to-see-you smile. She sat down on the bed with us, and rubbed my leg. “Well Stace,” as she had come to call me, “I’ve just returned from a meeting with the ethics board of the hospital, and I’m afraid we have to induce labor,” she said. I didn’t understand. She explained the process that included the insertion of a Pitocin tablet into my vagina, which would bring on labor pains so that my cervix would dilate and prepare for delivery. Delivery? What? It wasn’t time for that. My baby wasn’t ready. I didn’t even know the sex yet.

            I was left once again to wait. I’d asked my husband to tell the nurses to stop checking my baby’s heartbeat when they came in to examine me. Each little thump, thump, thump ripped my own heart from my body. My baby was healthy. It just could not survive outside of its Mommy on its own yet and it was already on its way as it protruded from my uterus in its sac. Although I was in that awful Trendelenburg position for two days, I’d still found myself waiting for my labor and delivery room to get ready. I’d laid flat on my back, with my feet raised higher than my head, hoping that gravity would pull my baby safely inside once again. But it hadn’t worked.

            I was heartbroken.

            I had to go through labor, and deliver my healthy baby that we knew would not survive. Jeremie had made a final plea to Dr. Hirata, but she explained that my own life was at risk and because they knew the baby would not survive, they had to justify the induction via the ethics board.

            “Have you thought about burial or cremation,” the delivery nurse asked. What!? My God, what was happening? As Jeremie held my hand, I begged him not to let them tell me the sex of the baby. I screamed out in pain as she held my leg in the air and yelled, “Push.” I didn’t know what to expect. “Jeremie, I don’t want to see. Don’t let them show me,” I’d pleaded just before she placed my son on my chest. He was alive. My God, he was alive! And he looked just like his Dad.

            The delivery nurse shuffled back and forth looking for batteries for her camera and making bracelets; she even took my baby boy away from me for a moment so that she could get hand and foot prints. I was really frustrated with her insistence to capture these  grief-stricken moments.

            That physical and emotional pain of an early miscarriage for me was unbearable. Having to birth a baby that I knew would not survive, completely broke me. But it also bonded me and my husband forever! I was able to recognize that there are people in and around me that I can trust my life with completely. I’ve learned to depend on God and that there is hope.  I’ve been so thankful for that delivery nurse’s wisdom though. I now have photos, a mini teddy bear, a bracelet, hat and gown that all belong to my only son, Caylan Jai Roberts, who died two hours after he was born. He was in his Mommy’s arms for just a moment, but he will be forever in my heart.

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Want Yours To Grow?

girls-hairI get asked all the time, “What do you use on your daughters’ hair to make it grow so long?” Most times, I honestly have no answer. Cause, there’s really nothing in particular that I use. Often, it’s simply what was on sale when we ran out of what other product we previously had.

What I can pass along, is that I take time with it. And that’s simply my explanation for its growth. Now when I say time, I don’t mean brushing it 1,000 strokes per 1002753_10200272998651642_395917767_nday, and sealing the ends nightly; or weekly washings, settings, dryings, braidings, etc. Remember, I do suffer with depression, so there is many-a-day, when I will throw them a hat or simply slick down the baby hair and call it a day!

More often than not though, I am very attentive to their hair (them in general)…and growth is produced.

Do you want yours to grow? As a matter of fact, what is your “yours?”

Is it your marriage? Education? Finances? Relationship with God? Heck, even a garden? Whatever your “yours” is, how much TIME are you devoting to it? And where does it measure up on the growth charts?

Okay, got that answer?

Is it where you want it to be? If your answer is “no,” then you probably should try spending more time with it!

Too many folk are sitting back, looking at other folk, and either wondering or hating about what someone else’s husband does for his wife. Or how impressive (though they won’t admit it) someone else’s kids are. Or how much FAITH someone else has in spite of what they can see, that they are going through.

Here’s a recommendation…PUT IN YOUR TIME!

I talk all the time about the “microwave generation” that we have become. Everybody seems to want everything NOW. PUT IN YOUR TIME! I promise you, you will see the GROWTH. And you will be better for the experience. Now go do it!

I know YOU CAN!

Love,

Stacey

http://www.shecan.live

Facing the “know”

Until I got an official diagnosis, I was not even aware that I was suffering with depression. When you are ignorant, sometimes you simply don’t know. I wasn’t crying all the time, or gloomy, or always sad. Because you see, in my eyes, that’s what depression was. I didn’t even notice that I totally stopped combing my hair. That as much as my husband loved to run his hands through my strands, I just pulled it back with a stretchy band leaving my ends to whittle away and break. It was the “mom’s ponytail” after all so, that was no big deal. It was just more comfortable to me to put on fresh, fluffy pajamas after a hot, mid-day shower instead of other clothes. Again, comfort, not depression. At least I was clean. I didn’t even realize that I only left the house on Sundays for church. It’s not like I didn’t want to be in the presence of other people, I was a mom that homeschooled, so there wasn’t time to be social. Sure, I love a steaming cup of hazel-nutty goodness with friends, but when I get the caffeine jitters, I prefer to be in the comfort of my own home. My diagnosis triggered something in me. Knowing for me, has allowed me to begin to heal…

 

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Your storm is next.

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My Cori’s VBS arts & crafts project.

What do you do, during someone else’s storm?

Hurricane Matthew  beats the East Coast as I type, and it has DEVASTATED Haiti! What are you doing while all this is going on?

Are you praying for fellow-man? Are you preparing to send assistance to those in need? Are you nestled in the dry, comfort of your own home? Are you saying, “well, yeah they’re experiencing a hurricane, but thunderstorms matter too…” Are you thinking that it doesn’t make a difference either way because it’s not you? Or are you preparing in case it comes your way?

We, as a people, have forgotten what it’s like to have compassion for mankind. We don’t love others with the love of God. And it appears that if something doesn’t affect us directly, then it simply doesn’t have an effect on us!

I’m not just talking about the weather today folks. What about your marriage storm? What about feuding family storms? What about lost loved ones storms? What about no job storms? What about your bad health storm? What about the barren “mother” storm? What about the homeless and hungry storms? What about being shot down in the street for no reason and no justice storms?

What are you doing when it’s someone else’s?

Your storm is coming next. 

So prepare.

And help someone else while they are going through theirs. You may just LEARN through the process, what you may need to do to get through yours.

You can do it, I know YOU CAN!

Love,

Stacey

I’m Not Pretending To Be Sick…

Can I be real with you? When you see me, most days…I’m actually pretending to be well!

466051_10200224978006841_767781759_oWhy do I say this? Well, sometimes I trip out myself over the symptoms that my anxiety brings. Not the panic attacks that anyone could probably be familiar with or visibly notice. You know the racing heart, upset stomach, sweating, nausea, inability to catch your breath or even breathe?  Or people feeling as if you’re nervous or “freaking out” about stuff.

Not those. I’m not even talking about when I’ve accidentally swallowed a piece of a chip and feel like it’s gonna cut something on my insides and I’ll bleed to death (here comes a panic attack.) Because seriously anxiety does make you feel like every ailment is a death sentence!

I’m talking about stuff like burning sensations in your leg. You know, like your leg heating up in certain spots. And you feel it, but when you have someone else touch your leg, there’s nothing there. So, you’re convinced that, that must be a blood clot. Ummm…those can be fatal right?

Or when your arm out of nowhere goes completely numb. What is that? Or then there’s no feeling in your thumb. And the next week, your index finger. Twitching eyes and the test of your vanity because your face has twisted to one side and is stuck that way for 3-4 weeks. Well, I diagnosed myself with Multiple Sclerosis because this stuff doesn’t happen for nothing! So I thought, until the neurologist said “nope, you’re good!”

Some nights, I can barely sleep (depending upon a flare-up). I feel vibrations under my foot when there’s nothing going on, and every now and then, there’s an annoying ringing in my right ear.

I’M NOT PRETENDING.

Honestly, I wish I was. These things are really happening to me. I know this can be so hard on my husband, kids and family. BUT, I am utilizing things to keep it under control. Because the meds they prescribed…uh, uh…side effects, oh NO! (That’s a WHOLE other discussion we’ll have at some point.)

But, I’ve accepted my diagnosis, and because of that, I’m functioning and getting better and PRETENDING in public, to be WELL. Fake it ’till it’s real! I’m hopeful for that. I’m hopeful to actually feel good when I go out and not have to pretend. I can do it! And I know YOU CAN too!

Love,

Stacey

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If He Would Have Been Faithful

I would have been cheated…

You see, there was a time when I thought I had met my soul-mate. That was it for me, you know? I had found THE ONE. This man was IT, and because of that I would put up with all types of mess!

Shoot, I hadn’t put in all those years and done all that training for him to get it right for someone else!

But that joker couldn’t be FAITHFUL to save his life!

And for that, I THANK him! He did me a favor and it was my blessing in disguise.

You see, what I thought was “real love” was simply real competition. And anyone who personally knows me, knows that I’m all about winning! I’m not down for the participation trophy, I need to place! That’s just me. And it also so happens to be a family trait. (you should see us in action i.e. corn hole, horseshoes, cards, food, hair color! lol…)

But get this, I had to lose to win. Do you know that if he would have been faithful, I would have missed out on MY MAN? I look back over my life, the course of the last several years, that dude wouldn’t have made it through half of the stuff that Jeremie and I have gone through.

I would have never known real love. I would never have the opportunity to see someone watch me in adoration. Sacrifice for me and our family. Provide. Love every part of my body. I would have missed out on HIM!

Ladies, sometimes we let a relationship-gone-wrong CRUSH us! Make us feel as if we’ve lost our worth. PLEASE, please don’t ignore that fact that it could just be YOUR blessing-in-disguise. Don’t hold on to a relationship that doesn’t feel good, or that hurts you to your core. LOVE doesn’t do that…strong like, lust, competition perhaps, but not love. It’s not going to feel like that. You’ll know it, when it’s real.

So, hang in there! I know YOU CAN!

Love,

Stacey

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