What is Single Moms Across America?
What is Single Moms Across America?
Today I want to challenge each and everyone of you with my blog. I want to challenge you to be brutally honest with yourself and ask yourself just one question “Are you in Denial?”. I will bet that the majority of you will emphatically answer NO. I’m not in denial, I fully accept what has gone on in my life, what is going on in my life and why it has all happened, I have no regrets… But I will say to you right now that you ARE in denial, you just don’t know it yet. First let’s understand what denial is. Webster’s Dictionary defines Denial as: Refusal to admit the truth or reality (as of a statement or charge) (2) : assertion that an allegation is false. Many of you are probably asserting right now that my allegation that you are in denial is false. But allow me to give you another definition of denial from Debbie Ford’s book “Why Good People Do Bad Things”. A must read by the way… “When the collective wounds of our past become to great for our human heart to bear, an internal switch flips on that sends us into denial”. “When the pain is more than we can handle, when we have no tools to deal with the trauma of a particular situation, we automatically kick into the denial mode”. “Denial is a brilliant function within the human psyche”. “In it’s highest function, denial serves us by protecting us from pain. Yet to our great detriment, it also blinds us from seeing our own destructive nature, which inevitably causes us more pain”. Although denial can assist us with our pain, it can also turn us into our own worst enemy. So again I will challenge you to ask yourself the question “Are you in Denial?”. I believe that as parents, friends, family and individuals we are all at one time or another, in denial. We deny to acknowledge that life hasn’t exactly gone the way that we planned it, for fear that others will think less of us. We deny that our children have problems, in order to hide our fears of what people will think of us as parents. We deny ourselves the right to be vulnerable, because we fear that people will perceive us to be weak. We deny that our finances are a mess, because we fear that people will judge us. We deny that every once in awhile we need some help, because we fear that no one will be there to help us. We deny those closest to us the opportunity to love us, because our constant denials have denied us the time to love ourselves. And finally we deny ourselves the chance to be happy, to be proud, to feel confident and to be successful because it is easier to feel sorry for ourselves, than it is to become the person we are destined to be. Denial can pretend to comfort you, when in reality it is an uncomfortable enemy. It is the one emotion that keeps us down when we should be getting up. It is the one emotion that pushes us away instead of pulling us forward. It is the one emotion that allows us to feel sorry for ourselves when we should be believing in ourselves. It is the one emotion that allows us to accept our negativity as acceptable, when in reality we should be positively denying it. So again I challenge each and everyone of you again to ask yourself the question, “Am I in Denial?”. If you answered YES this time, then I challenge you to make a change right now. Challenge yourself to deny denial! Challenge yourself to be the authentic self you were destine to be and made to be. Get out of that bad relationship that is draining you, get out of that job that is holding you back, get out of that mind set that is telling you that you are no good. Get out your heart and accept that you are worthy of love again, but most importantly get out of your own way, by getting out of denial now. You deserve to be happy, you deserve to be strong, you deserve to be proud of who you are, and you deserve to be loved more than anyone in this world. You deserve to deny denial once and for all…
Bill McLeod is the founder of www.singleparentstown.com The author of “Kickin Butt as a Single Parent – 99 Tips That Every Single Parent Must Have” and a Life Coach to Single Parents www.billmcleodcoaching.com . He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org You can also follow Bill on Facebook and Twitter
That quote is from one of my favorite films “The Pursuit of Happyness”. It is a must watch for any parent. Now let’s see if you can spot the swear word in the quote above. I’ll give you a hint it starts with a C and ends with T. If you guessed CAN’T, you are correct. I hate the sound of that word; I always have and always will. My disdain for this word was recently renewed when it started spewing out of my children’s mouths like lava during a volcanic eruption.
“Daddy I can’t put my shoes on. Daddy I can’t put my pants on. Daddy I can’t carry my blanket. I can’t do this. I can’t do that.” I had heard enough!! I decided to make can’t a swear word! I set out on my mission to teach them something they can use for the rest of their lives. Before we continue I need to issue a DISCLAIMER here: WARNING! Teaching young children to have a can-do attitude and willpower can be extremely dangerous. You need to learn how to harness it and when to encourage the behavior. Just an example: Child determined to climb on top of anything in their path to get to an out of reach box of crayons- BAD. Child won’t give up on a puzzle until all the pieces are in the proper place- GOOD.
If you say you can’t do something you will believe you can’t. If you believe you can’t then you admit defeat. If you let someone tell you that you can’t do something you enable them to have power over you.
It seems smartphones have superpowers. Combined with my friend Google, who has never let me down playing information hide and seek, it is amazing what can be accomplished. My then second grade daughter had a swan origami project due the next day, no problem. Google found detailed instructions on how to make swan origami. Good thing, as don’t want someone who has never won a paper airplane contest figuring it out. ‘What’s for lunch tomorrow Dad?!’, the question is posed with eyes wide as silver dollars. Google, what say you: find me the school lunch menus! ‘Well guys and gals, it’s Liver and Onions or Fish’. PACK, Dad, PACK!!! I do tell them what the real lunch is and then they decide what day they want to buy. For Christmas dinner, was told made the best ribeye roast and almost as good as Grandma’s; that is rare ribeye air. All because Google found a recipe and I just did what it said. I have even used my iPhone to change the game of hide and seek to hide and text.
The need to be connected is quite powerful, technology has enabled it . Smartphones and cell phones shuttle texts, emails, Facebook messages, and the like. It has increased access and the ease of connection. The issue with being connected all the time is just that, being connected all the time. It seems that the ease and access of communication is causing a trend away from actual conversations and engaging with others. What has also become apparent to me with all this electronic and social media hyperconnectivity is how refreshing it is to ’disconnect to reconnect’.
Is This What You Expected?
I remember the first time someone said to me, “When we make plans, God laughs.” I didn’t get it but I do find it odd that I do remember that I was turning left on to Melrose off of Longhorn. It clearly impacted me and I had no idea why.
Now I do.
I had a plan. I’m sure you did too. My guess is that your plan has not materialized the way you had ‘planned’ it would.
I was 17 years old, pregnant, and homeless. All of my dreams had been shattered. I had scholarships to go to colleges across the country. Yet, here I stood, alone and hopeless. The next several years presented unspeakable hardships. I barely had enough money to make ends meet. I found myself pregnant again only a few short months after giving birth to my first child. I was at the lowest of lows – no money and very little family or friend support. I was drowning. I was crying out in agony nightly, as it seemed my life couldn’t get much worse. It was in this very low moment that I made a decision to give the local church a try again.
I had been raised in church and although I had not been in quite some time, I knew I needed to try to get back. I was desperate. The embarrassment of having two children outside of marriage was almost more than I could bear. But then, the question arose, what church would I attend? You see, my two children were biracial – half African-American, half Caucasian. There were no integrated churches in my area. Where would I fit in? How would my children be accepted?
Those may be odd questions for some of you. Perhaps you have never experienced such a thing in your world. But prior to giving birth to my first child seventeen years ago, I don’t even remember having seen a biracial baby. The months and years that passed after his birth presented huge racial hurdles for me. It seemed that both the black and white communities had plenty to say in the way of unacceptance. Some were outright racial slurs cast upon myself and my children. Some even went so far as to ask us to leave restaurants and malls. But other racism presented itself in more unique ways. Perhaps I was at work and a coworker talked about “them”, or maybe I attended a church service and overheard whispers of “them”, quickly realizing that my children and I were the “them” they spoke of.
Sometimes it is out of the ruins that the most powerful wave of transformation begins. Have faith that you can rise above anything, rebuild and stand in a stronger foundation than ever before. Welcome the ruins and ride the wave…..Michele DeVille
My daughters and I saw the movie “The Impossible” last weekend and I have to say WOW! What an intense, emotional, touching story about courage, strength, determination, survival, pain, adversity and love. This movie touched me deeply on so many levels and I found myself in tears throughout the movie and long after I left the theatre. In the end this touching movie reminded me about the human spirit, the will to survive, how strong people truly are and how in the end love is what matters most. The movie also reminded me that even in the worst situations and the ultimate destruction and ruins, love never fails, people do survive and can rise above anything and cities can be rebuilt.
Thinking about this whole concept helped me to remember that we all have what it takes to survive and rise above anything. There are times when regardless of the reason we feel like our lives are in ruins and it can leave us feeling helpless, overwhelmed and our faith can be tested. I have been in this place more than once but I can honestly say that I have learned that just as my quote says, it is out of those ruins that some of my most powerful transformation has occurred.