Assistance to assisting

Who I am now didn’t happen overnight( and still working on it daily). It wasn’t an easy road. This happened over many situations.

Here I was needing help from the government. Using WIC (women’s infant and children) to supplement a small amount of groceries monthly, discovering that no matter what, I was going to be treated like dirt at the heart of my seeking assistance.

I remember sitting in the office of the local health department after an embarrassing low of asking for assistance to support me and my child. I sat there being looked down on by the worker. She was irritated to be at work. She was irritated that I couldn’t give exact information on his father’s income. She didn’t know I was in my second semester of college and I had made a determination that I was going to be someone someday. This woman acted as if I chose to be there. My choices DEFINITELY landed me here. But I didn’t want this life. For me or my baby. I was trying my best to dig myself out. Everything she did and everything she said to me, she wanted me to know I was wasting her time and so was everyone else she had to deal with in her day. It hurt me. I even called to make a complaint although I know it didn’t go far.

Every few months I had to come in for a redetermination. Every few months I dreaded it. I couldn’t continue to take this.

This day I decided to find my place in this line of work. I decided I would try my best to show people respect no matter the circumstances. I wanted to be a fresh face someone saw when they were at their lowest point.

Fast forward 5 years. I got my degree (by the grace of God) . Then I got another degree (still shouting God’s grace) . Then I faithfully applied to DHR. I got an interview. I got an acceptance letter (Amen) . I accepted the job.

My first day on the job was nerve wrecking. I had worked so hard to get to this place. Here I was. My anxiety was high. The place was new. It was different. I tried my very best to be uplifting and positive. I tried to listen to anything I was told. I got settled into my office. I had an office y’all!!!

And then…..

I met the woman that was so negative toward me the day I chose my future. She was a kind lady. She was very helpful to me, being that I was “the new girl”. I mentioned that I had needed assistance years ago and remembered her. She didn’t remember me. I felt it was best not to go further with the story.

To this day she is a good Co-worker. We get along well.

She has no idea how she was fuel to my already burning fire to make a change in this life.

Surrogacy appointment #1

January 3, 2019.

Mama and daddy picked me up from work so we would have time to chat before the appointment. We’ve known each other for years but we have not had a lot of personal contact. I’ve watched the couple go through so much in their journey of parenthood but that is their story to tell.

This is mine.

We hit traffic on the way there from roadwork on the interstate. We ran into closed roads. We got tickled talking about confusing downtown traffic and one way streets. We found the fertility clinic. Finally!!

We spent a time filling out paperwork then we waited. The doctor was ready for us and we went back.

Mom and dad shared their story. Doctor dis used the process with them. They shared a question and answer time. I’m so proud of mom. She’s researched so much. She’s serious and we know it. Doctor looked to me and asked me if I was good? Did I have any questions?

I did not. I told him I’m along for the ride. I’m honored to be able to help this couple. I’m blessed to give the gift of life.

Let’s do this.

He will not see us again until a legal contract is completed. Ok. Fair enough doc. See you soon.

🤗🤰🏿

Surrogate beginnings

I have desired to be a surrogate for years. I felt the pull after my son was was born because parenthood is so beautiful. I felt it heavily when a close friend of mine lost her newborn child. She ended up being able to birth a child and didn’t need my womb. My best friend was struggling with getting pregnant for years and I offered the option to her but they ended up getting divorced.

Here I am. 32 years old. A church friend of mine has gone through such a long draining emotional process of foster/adoption, ending in a very painful removal of an infant shortly after receiving the child. She had made it known she and her husband had decided on surrogacy with a donor embryo. I jumped at the opportunity. I told her I wanted to pray for a time and ask God to press in my heart what to do. I felt completely accepting to the ability to gift them a child. I asked several close friends and family and decided on yes.

This is huge.

Please respond with replies of support, disagreeance, thoughts and please oh please, if you’ve been a surrogate, get with me!!!

Let the journey begin!

Just a rub

I just want a back rub. I want a person’s touch on my body. I want to feel a release of this stress I’m holding so tightly to. I want to cuddle. I want to spoon. I want intimacy. I want comfort. I want security.

But I don’t want it with just anyone. And I don’t want it without God.

I don’t want someone to tell me why I’m doing or not doing something the right way. I want this world to understand something it more than likely never will. I want an understanding of where I am in life and what I’m trying to accomplish.

I’ve heard it before and I will pass it along. Being with no one is so much better than being with the wrong one.

Life is about time. We have all the time but yet our time is always disappearing. I want my time to be appropriate. I want what’s right.

I don’t know what that means right now. But I know I don’t want to move.

God please keep this true to my heart.

Amen.

Lonely road

Perspective-A particular attitude toward or way of regarding something. A point of view.

I find myself in deep thought. Am I too much? I’m not good enough? I will be alone forever? No one can handle me?

I came from such a chaotic dysfunctional background. I lived the same life when I began life on my own. It was miserable in the end. I decided in my early 20s that I wanted a better life for myself.

For over 10 years now I have not stopped improving. I have fallen on my face more times than I can count, don’t get me wrong. But I promised myself I would always get back up.

12 Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. 13 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,14 I press on toward the goal to win the prizefor which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

Philippians 3:12-14

I have found that some people around me don’t see who I was and how far I have come. They don’t see the passion behind my choices. What I desire out of life isn’t appreciated. They see me in a different light than I ever want to be seen in.

I honestly do not want my way. My way can be unhealthy and disrespectful. I am human. I live in sin. Which is why everything I try to do comes from the Bible I solely base my life on.

I do not want to be a part of chaos. I don’t want to be a part of unhealthy. I don’t want those I care about to be either.

Make no friendship with a man given to anger, nor go with a wrathful man,

Proverbs 22:24

I have learned boundaries where I never had them before.

Here I am, working all these jobs and going to school and trying to balance my life with little help. I find myself in frustrating situations where people expect so much more from me than I can give right now. People expect me to be perfect and completely able to handle situations. I can not. I just want to be understood. I want peace.

I will find peace through my Lord and Savior.

Of David. The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid? When evildoers assail me to eat up my flesh, my adversaries and foes, it is they who stumble and fall. Though an army encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet I will be confident. One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple. For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will lift me high upon a rock. …

Psalm 27:1-14

The Lord my God knows my trouble. He also knows my heart.

Single

I’ve mastered a lot in my life. One thing I cannot achieve is single parenthood. No matter how hard I try, I find something I haven’t thought of, something I cannot handle.

In a nuclear family, you’re able to tag team one of the hardest jobs…. parenting. Even an option of having family around to help is close to absent in my world. It seems like every time a family member DOES decide to help, something happens and I’m unable to rely on them for one reason or another and it just causes more stress. (Let me say this, I have two grandparents that watch my kids from the time they get off the bus until I pull up and I’m absolutely grateful for the help)

I work one of two jobs in my day. I come home and instantly am needed by two little bodies. They just want to tell me about their day. Tell me their thoughts. I just want to decompress for a second. That option is off the table. These kids are good kids. They have struggles. I want to be there for them through it all. I can’t. The older they get, the more I realize this. I’m tired. I’m mentally exhausted. I have questions and no one to ask. I have thoughts and no one to be my sound board. I have no one to take over while I regain my composure. I’m me. But me is last. I just don’t want to screw my kids up. I want them to know I love them so much. I can’t do everything though.

Life is about checks and balances. Without one the other goes haywire. Peace is found when there is a balance. I’m here. One sided.

Here’s the crazy part though. I have ZERO desire to find someone right now. I put in years of effort to try and make it work and I have learned so much. But right now, I have no energy to find a relationship. I have no energy to weed through the mess to find someone that is good enough for my two children. I want to be left alone. I can’t waste any more of my children’s time. Their hearts have broken because of me and I can’t put them through that again.

Thank you for letting me share!

Discrimination

I am a first-generation American. My father and his family moved from Germany, when he was 5 years old, to Texas. My father had to learn English and his family forced him to embrace American ways so that he would succeed in life in America. My father lost his German language skills through the years and if you met him on the street today, you would think he was just as “American” as the rest of us. My grandmother, although she learned English and follows American ways, is still very German. She speaks German fluently and still holds the German customs high.

My family always taught me to never look at someone’s skin color. I say these things as a background for my explanation of prejudice from my eyes. I started school at a local county school and my mind was blown. There was one black family in the entire school. There were two black students in my class, who were first cousins.   Growing up in North Alabama, I learned at an early age what discrimination was. There was a group of high school aged boys with shaved heads that would meet in the mornings before school and blow their horns and yell around the area. I learned that they were called “skinheads” and they believed in racism and white supremacy. I was over at one of my friend’s houses for a spend-the-night party one time and her dad and uncle discussed hitting a black man for points on a non-existent scoreboard they had kept up with for years. There was a bar a few miles from the school that did not allow black people to enter.

As a young adult, I experienced other races discriminating against me for the color of my skin. I have been talked to like I hated other races, without being asked my opinion. I have been ignored on several occasions while I was the minority of a group. I have had to defend myself in situations that embarrassed me simply because of my color. I believe I was sheltered but I do not believe it was an incorrect decision on my parents’ part.

I tend to discriminate against ignorance. I say ignorance because they live in a normative-cultural environment.   They follow customs of their community. They are accepted when they follow such ideas. I also struggle with the stereotypes of southern families. The man works and the woman stays at home, taking care of the children. The man does what he wants and the woman is left to make a decent home and take care of the children. The woman is not expected to gain education. The man is not expected to gain further education, either. It is acceptable to quit school at sixteen and gain a full time job. There is little desire to excel further in life. This way of living is passed down to the children. I know this is not the way everyone lives. I also know that knowledge has improved and families are beginning to want a better life.

It is hard when I work with families who do not want to better themselves because they do not know the improvement they are missing. I struggle with this prejudice in the community I work for. I have to learn how to meet people where they are at. I have to accept them for who they are and what they believe in. I have to be careful of their feelings when I express the need for change to parent their children in a safe environment free from alcohol/substance or physical abuse. I have to understand that although I am working with a particular family- expecting change, the environment the family is in will likely not change. When a family discusses racism as the norm, I have to carefully explain that race in itself is not a reason for blaming in the community, but at the same time, I cannot expect change in their minds and it is not my job to change that aspect of their life. As a social worker, we are to embrace our family’s differences of lifestyles.  I choose to put myself in situations that will broaden my understanding of groups that I do not naturally belong to.