It’s Okay Today

The moment I opened my eyes this morning I knew that it would be one of those days. It’s a grief day. Sounds silly but I don’t know what else to call it. Grief can be tricky and sneaky. Although it’s something that stays with you, it still can come in deeper form; like a wave to crash over you, at anytime, without notice. That’s how I feel today. Like I was hit by a ton of bricks, each of them carrying it’s own feeling. A lot of times, when these days come, I do my best to just carry on as usual. Other times, I couldn’t if I wanted to. Today is the latter. I’m just sad and I miss my person. I’m going to just let that be okay today.

I Don’t Wanna Monday

Another weekend in the books!

What did you do?

Where my peeps at?!

I’ve loved connecting with all of you, so much!

Tell me where you’re from in the comments! 🌎 ⬇️⬇️⬇️ 🌎

I’m from Indiana U.S.

Liebster Award 2018 🥇

Hey Blog Fam!

LONG POST WARNING ⚠️I have received 2 nominations for the Liebster Award 2018!

I was nominated by The Stubborn Australian ◀️◀️ and ▶️▶️TASHNEE.V.MAVEE

Thank you both!!! ♥️

Their blogs are awesome and you should click the links above ☝🏼☝🏼☝🏼 and check them out! Like seriously, do it!

About The Liebster Award

Recognizing bloggers for their efforts is the greatest compliment. The Liebster Award is an opportunity for bloggers to recognize and support other bloggers for their achievements. It’s geared towards blogs with smaller viewership.

The Liebster Award is available from January 1 – December 31, 2018. All nominations are voluntary and if the blogger chooses to accept nomination, I will list the rules at the bottom of this post and the official rules can be found HERE ⬅️⬅️⬅️

Why am I passionate about blogging? Where do I start?! I LOVE it! I’ve always had a passion for writing.📝I even got the grand idea to write a book!📖I felt as though I had been through things in my life that, if I opened up about them through writing, could help others in similar situations. Not long after that, the unimaginable happened. On June 19th 2012, my husband and I got in the car for a 6 mile drive to go pick up our 2 kids. We only made it 3.5 miles. My husband and I were in a horrific accident that claimed his life. In an instant, my entire life and that of my kids, changed. That story I had been writing, that started because I thought I had been through some things, was over. My story was over. Or so I thought. Five and a half years later and lots more trials overcome, I decided to write again. I refused to let my story be over. So, here I am. Writing, with a passion to connect with others along the way.

10 Random Facts About Me • I make homemade bath bombs • I collect Willow Tree angels • I was in finance/banking for 14 years • I was a 10 year 4-H member • I can wiggle my ears • I have an obsession with music • I was voted worst driver and best laugh my Senior year in HS • I love the mountains • I know all the 50 states in alphabetical order

Questions and Answers from The Stubborn Australian ⬇️⬇️⬇️ Side note: I was really excited to insert a kangaroo emoji in this post for my new Aussie friend, only to be terribly let down in finding there isn’t one. Not cool!

If you could relive one moment again what would it be? 6/19/12 at 2:00 p.m.

What is your all time favorite MOVIE/BOOK and why? The Next 3 Days – it was the last movie I saw with my husband. The Bible because God’s words change lives.

If you were trapped in a room and were allowed three people (past or present) to help you get out who would you choose and why? 1) Jesus – because well, it’s Jesus! 2&3) My son & daughter because it’s kind of us against the world.

What is the one most crucial piece of advice you would pass on to your children/protege? Put God first in your life. There will always be troubles, but God promises to walk with us through them. Be happy.

What weird food combinations do you really enjoy? Fries dipped in ice cream

What’s the most expensive thing you’ve broken? Drawing a blank here. Hmm. A phone? 📲 Hearts? 💔😂

What mythical creature do you wish actually existed? Unicorns! 🦄🦄🦄

If you were given a PhD degree, but had no more knowledge of the subject of the degree besides what you have now, what degree would you want to be given to you?Biomedical Engineering because it sounds cool.

What always cheers you up when you think about it? This makes me sound like a terrible person, but I’m going to be honest… People falling. I can’t help it; cracks me up! 😂

What fictional characters have you had a crush on over the years?

😍👇🏼😍👇🏼😍

Questions and Answersfrom the amazing TASHNEE.V.MAVEE ⬇️⬇️⬇️

1 What’s the best thing a blogger can give to his readers? Authenticity! Nothing inspires me more than reading something clearly and genuinely comes from the heart. 💗

2 What has been your strategy for creating visibility to yourself and your blog? I have to be honest, I’ve been winging it! There hasn’t been much of a strategy. I just set out to make genuine connections with people. I’ve done that by searching for blogs that I can relate to and in turn, I’ve had meaningful conversations and made real connections with some awesome people.

3 Name some of the bloggers whom you look up to and why? Dr. Perry because he is an intelligent psychologist that uses his platform to not only inspire people, but he is constantly using it to help promote others. I find him to be unique, uplifting, and extremely generous. Through Ink and Image (lynnabbottstudios) because she is the first person who befriended me here. She didn’t just follow my blog or try to promote herself, she made a real and genuine connection with me and called me a friend. She is brilliant. She’s an author, an amazing artist, and she loves God! Her heart shines through her posts, her art, and her communications with those she connects with. Qui Talks because she is a beautiful person, inside and out. Her writing is real and inspiring. She inspired me to do something I’ve always wanted to do, but didn’t have the nerve! To start a podcast! Now, I haven’t started mine yet, but it is one thing I know I will accomplish in the near future. She gave me the courage to believe that I could do it too. Please take a moment, if you haven’t already, to check out their pages. You won’t regret it!

4 What do you find most challenging about blogging about your topic? The most challenging thing for me has been to be vulnerable. I have been through a lot in my life and those things are the fuel behind the passion I have to reach others. To do that, in a real way, I have to be vulnerable and sometimes relive painful things. It is all worth it though.

5 Who is your role model? My role model is my Dad. I don’t want to say too much because I would like to tell about him in a separate post very soon. But, he’s amazing.

6 Why did you start blogging? I answer this question toward the beginning of this post and this is already super long so, I won’t write it again. You’re welcome;)

7 If you could give your younger self an advice, what would it be? Another future post, but I will say; love and believe in yourself.

8 Describe yourself in three words. Passionate, caring, and faithful.

9 How has blogging changed your life? I talk about this above as well💗

10 What is your favourite music? You don’t even want to get me started! I’m obsessed with music and finding people I’ve never heard, discovering new sounds, and talent. A “few” of my favorites are Josh Krajcik, Coldplay, Ray LaMontagne, Kodaline, The Script, James Morrison, omg I could go on for hours! I’ll spare you 😉

11 Who do you look up to in life? My wid-fam! These are the friends the I have made along the way that are walking the same journey as me, after losing a spouse. They are some of the most amazing, courageous, beautiful, and real people I have ever had the pleasure of knowing. I’m forever grateful for them!

It’s nomination time…

My questions to you lovely people are:

1 Three words to describe your blog

2 what type of music do you listen to?(Genre, artists, songs) 🎶

3 Pizza or tacos? 🍕🌮

4 What is something that you have always wanted to try but were too scared to?

5 Are you presently content with your life?

6 What are you most proud of in your life?

7 What was your first car?

8 When was the last time you were snooping, and found something you wish you hadn’t?

9 What was cool when you were young but isn’t cool now?

10 Your top tip for finding blog-spiration?

I hope you have fun answering these and sharing these/your own questions with the blogging world!The Official Rules Of The Liebster Award 

If you have been nominated for The Liebster Award AND YOU CHOOSE TO ACCEPT IT, write a blog post about the Liebster award in which you:

1. thank the person who nominated you, and post a link to their blog on your blog.

2. display the award on your blog — by including it in your post and/or displaying it using a “widget” or a “gadget”. (Note that the best way to do this is to save the image to your own computer and then upload it to your blog post.)

3. answer 11 questions about yourself, which will be provided to you by the person who nominated you.

4. provide 11 random facts about yourself.

5. nominate 5 – 11 blogs that you feel deserve the award, who have a less than 1000 followers. (Note that you can always ask the blog owner this since not all blogs display a widget that lets the readers know this information!)

6. create a new list of questions for the blogger to answer.

7. list these rules in your post (You can copy and paste from here.) Once you have written and published it, you then have to:

8. Inform the people/blogs that you nominated that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link for them to your post so that they can learn about it (they might not have ever heard of it!)

A BIG THANK YOU AGAIN to The Stubborn Australian and TASHNEE.V.MAVEEThank you for bearing with this LONG post! Love my blog peeps so much! ♥️

National Widow’s Day

Yes, it’s a thing.

Today is National Widow’s Day

#widowedstrong

#saytheirname

JONATHAN ROBERTS

Did you know… 800,000 people are widowed each year?

Did you know… 700,000 of those are women?

Did you know… most widows live in poverty? (Over 115 million world wide)

Did you know… “death of a spouse” is listed as the #1 stressor on the stress index scale and is considered one of life’s most devastating events?

Did you know… 60% of those who lose a spouse or significant other will experience a serious illness within 12 months?

Did you know… insomnia is one of the most common symptoms for a grieving spouse?

Did you know… most widow(er)s lose 75% of their support base when their spouse dies?

Did you know… after 3 – 4 months most of the remaining support fades for a widow(er)?

Did you know… most widow(er)s lose touch with their in-laws within a year of a loss?

Did you know… it really is possible to die of a broken heart? Widow(er)s have a 30% elevated risk of death in the first 6 months after their spouse death.

Thank you GOD I beat almost every stat listed. I did lose some relationships but I gained some stronger ones as well…

Be nice to a widow today, you DON’T know what they deal with privately .

Writing Credit – Kisha Taylor from SUPPORT GROUP – Young, Widowed & Dating – Not a Dating Site

1,000 ♥️

I can’t even put into words how much I love my blog fam! I’m so happy to have connected with each one of you!

WWYD

As stated in one of my recent posts, I’m on a journey of reflection and walking through past hurts that still have a hold, of some sort, in my life. Concurrently, I’m taking a class through my church. The title of the class is called Freedom and it’s about learning to be free from all of the things that hold you back in your spiritual walk. In last night’s class, we were working on an exercise where we had to choose an experience relating to a job, relationship, or faith that we could work through a particular process with. The overall premise to this exercise is to ask yourself questions about this situation to help you gain a deeper understanding, so you can effectively work through it. Such as; how it would make you feel, thoughts you might have, what your beliefs are and how they might effect the way you handle the situation, etc. You then ask yourself what God says about the situation, what the truth is, and ultimately how the truth can change the situation. I chose a circumstance in which someone shared very personal information about another individual’s past with another person. This ended up causing hurt to several people. Now, what really tripped me up was that I was easily able to identify what God would say about it and how that could change the outcome. But, my heart did not line up. I realized that how I would handle this dilemma would be very different.

So what do I do?!

Yes, this was about me. This is a real situation with real hurt and, if I’m being perfectly honest, unforgiveness. Someone has hurt me very deeply and I still can’t settle, in my heart, how I want to handle it. The exercise reveals that I should hand the situation over to God as He is ultimately in control. If God is in control then I should take myself out of the equation and let Him handle it. I can only presume that means I need to forgive and let go. This. Is. My. Struggle. If it was that easy I would have done that already!

I need to do something, I know that, because this was very painful to me and I don’t want to keep holding on to the hurt and I hate carrying unforgiveness.

Here’s where I would like your perspective… Do I go to that person and let them know that I’m hurt and why? Do I just forgive and let go; believing that God will deal with and handle it? Something different? What would you do and why?

3 Day Quote Challenge

I was nominated by Manuela @inaloveworld to participate in the 3 Day Quote Challenge.

I will choose my favorite quotes by others and include an original quote each day ♥️

DAY 2!


“Live your truth. Express your love. Share your enthusiasm. Take action towards your dreams. Walk your talk. Dance and sing to your music. Embrace your blessings. Make today worth remembering.”

~Steve Marabol

I chose this quote because, to me, it speaks to how important it is to not take life for granted. When you have experienced great loss, you have a deeper appreciation for life. It’s tough though because with grief comes sadness so, sometimes it’s difficult to enjoy the good that might be happening around us. However, when the heaviness of grief lifts, the bright moments are much brighter.


My quote: Deep grief is the result of deep love. Period.

Thank you again to Manuela https://inaloveworld.wordpress.com/ for nominating me for this challenge!

My Nominees are:

https://windsofchange18.wordpress.com

https://thefourthdimensionoflife.wordpress.com

https://beckiesmentalmess.blog/?order=asc

Rules:

1.) Thank the person who nominated you.

2.) Post a quote for three consecutive days (1 quote for each day).

3.) Share why this quote appeals so much to you.

4.) Nominate 3 different bloggers for each day.

Much love,

Joni ♥️

Painful Times and Being Real

The month of June is approaching and I am already feeling it. Let me explain a few things. Some might not understand why anniversary dates can affect you so much. I’ve even told myself, it’s just a day on the calendar, try not to let it affect you any more than any other day. But the reality is, that “just another day on the calendar,” is of much significance and whether I want to acknowledge it or not, they are just hard days. Especially the anniversary of the accident. It takes you right back there. The hours leading up to it. You relive it. It’s not a choice. If you think it is, you are wrong.

Some say, they don’t have to be hard days. No, they don’t. And believe it or not, it’s not up to me. I can’t help how I feel. And I’m not going to pretend that I’m not hurting.

Jonathan’s birthday is on June 3rd

This year he would have been 39. Just because he isn’t here physically doesn’t mean that that day means nothing anymore. It actually means more now.

Father’s Day is June 17th.

Big deal? Yes, very big deal. My kids go on and try to live a normal life everyday, all while feeling like a huge part of them is gone. Because it is! This is a daily pain they walk around with. And in all reality, Father’s Day now sucks for them!

The anniversary of the accident is June 19th.

Yep, 2 days after Father’s Day. I usually plan something ahead of time to try and distract our minds on that day. There have been a couple years that I just couldn’t bring myself to do something. This year it will be six years since losing him. SIX YEARS. We are going to struggle with that.

You see, whether it’s 1 day, 6 months, or 5+ years. It hurts. There is a void. It’s not made up. It’s real. There is pain in not having that person anymore. Sure, we can do our best to move forward in a positive direction. But the void is still there. The pain of not having him is still there. No amount of time is going to change that. I understand that it would be easier for everyone that knows us if we could just go on quietly and not go through these painful times. That’s just not how it works. Sure, we could pretend that everything is okay and that we don’t feel the pain, but that’s just pretending. And that doesn’t help us. It helps you. I’m sorry if you are uncomfortable with our grief. Actually, I’m not sorry. I shouldn’t be made to feel like I need to hide the way I feel to make other people more comfortable. Instead of telling me how I should feel, or what I should do; if you love me, validate my feelings and just be there. Otherwise, I will want to shut you out. So please, bear with me in the next month or so. I might talk about him more. I might share memories more. I might say that I’m struggling. If you have an opinion on the matter, please keep it to yourself. There is nothing more hurtful than to be told that you shouldn’t feel the way you do or to hear that people have been talking about it, discussing how you should be handling your grief. I suffered in silence for a very long time because of worrying too much about what other people might think or say. But, no one has walked through this for me. No one has had to deal with the daily struggles that have come with losing this person who was an every day part of our lives. We have. You don’t have a clue what that has been like and I pray you don’t ever have to understand because of it happening to you. I have a voice; I’m going to use it. This is my story; I’m going to tell it.

All of that being said, the three of us have come SO far. We are living our lives the best way we know how. We are moving forward, a little more, every single day. But, we will always have some bad days. We will always miss him and wish he was here. I think the very most important thing to recognize here is that, we have never given up.

 

I have a voice; I’m going to use it. This is my story; I’m going to tell it.