My name is Melissa and I’m a Mom. I became a Mom 30 years ago. It took me a few years to become a Mom, the journey wasn’t simple, fraught with doctor’s visits, many tears and being poked and prodded.
I became a Mom 2 more times. I am now the proud mother of 3 beautiful, healthy children. For that I am humbly grateful.
Like most mom’s, while raising my children, I got caught up in working, PTA, and “creating” a life I thought was all my children needed at the time. A beautiful home, food on the table, church, rides to life’s experiences, vacations, and after-school activities. Filling our time with stuff to do. Over the span of my life, I look back and realize I missed teaching them some life experiences I didn’t learn until I had to.
My parents were my first guides. My parents taught me what they learned from their parents. My parents came from truly humble beginnings in the southern hills of West Virginia during a time fraught with poverty and very little upward mobility. They were given opportunities most in their circumstances were not allowed. I only see this now as I have aged. I didn’t understand their humble beginnings from the vantage point of youth.
I married a man who was taught by his parents all they knew. Their experiences became his to learn from and bring forward into the lives of our children.
Together we raised our three children, handing down the lessons we were taught by our parents.
Then we got divorced. The divorce blew up my perspective of what I thought I knew and how life was supposed to go. I learned that love was not what I thought love was. I learned integrity gets lost in the love of power and money. I learned that who I thought I was, was an illusion. My divorce taught me that I trusted the wrong person. Divorce taught me about fear, lost self-confidence and that to gain that confidence back, I would have to change. I learned that life doesn’t travel on the path we choose. Life has it’s own journey and we are only along for the ride.
I learned that if you want to have nice things said about you at your funeral, you should be honest, kind, and treat people ethically. Otherwise you will die alone.
As time moves forward, I age and grow into this journey. My resilience has taught me what I thought was “right” was only my idea of right. I’ve learned that right is relative to the person whose right is being discussed. My beliefs, as taught to me by my parents, were only that. Beliefs; something I chose to believe over and over until it became my reality.
My changing journey forced me to choose between the struggle of trying to control my path and holding onto my learned beliefs as absolute truths. Or, I could choose to listen to and guide the path life laid in front of me. Instead of holding on to my beliefs as truth, I began to question my beliefs, broadening my perspectives to live a life more open to all the possibilities it presents. I learned to stop judging life and others based on what I believed to be true. Not judging life, but accepting it’s unfolding, allowed me new opportunities and the courage to step out of my perceived safety net into a world I had never experienced.
It hasn’t been an easy journey. It often bends into places filled with loneliness, the strife of watching my children deal with the struggle divorced parents create, lost family connections, and trying to do the work that life takes.
This blog is the lessons I learned from the mistakes I made in my 55+ years on earth. Without these mistakes and the lessons they taught, I could not have grown and instead would have remained stagnant, stuck in my black and white thinking, never noticing the grey area where we all truly live.
I raised my children to the best of my ability. I have no regrets. I do, however, wish I had taught them broader points of view.
This blog is here to do just that…