an empath parent… (the teen years)

Ever since Jillie crossed over into teendom, I’m either shocked, dismayed, angry, sad, impressed, proud, confused, “seriously?” or “wait, what?” For me, this has absolutely been one of the most challenging periods of parenthood thus far.

The mood swings, the attitude, the back talk, the disrespectful language, the terrible decisions, the doing dumb stuff…

And Elliott is only four months shy of entering this stage of life. But I guess this is growing up. (Cue Blink-182)

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an empath parent… (the early years)

My older kids have always been described as “sensitive.” This word has been used both as an insult and a compliment at various points in their lives. Having grown up self-conscious of my own quick-to-cry nature, I always thought it was one of my flaws.

It took me a long time to realize that this part of me was actually a superpower. In fact, it wasn’t until long after I had my first two children that I discovered I was an empath.

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circle the drain… (pt. three)

I realized that I was so deeply unhappy with myself that I couldn’t even look in the mirror. If I did happen to catch a glimpse of my reflection, I didn’t recognize the person staring back. I pretended not to care about my appearance after awhile, citing “#thatquarantinelife” and “#workingfromhomewithababyatoddlerapreteenandateenlife.” Though these are legitimate stressors, they are also excuses. BS excuses.

Sure, times are hard and you don’t have to be perfect, but when you start to feel disgusting in your own skin (and there’s something you can do about it, but you just don’t), there is something wrong. In my particular case, there was no one to blame but myself.

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so many signs…

Alright, alright, alright… here I am again. Over the last several months, I’ve started drafting blog posts, but ultimately abandoned them. I let ego get in the way of putting out content. Instead of running to the computer as soon as an idea struck, or heck, even putting pen to paper and just getting something down, I would begin writing it in my head.

My mind would start asking those dumb questions, like “how much could you really write on that subject?” “who would care?” and “what’s the point?” After reading (okay, fine, listening to) Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert, I realized it was just my ego screwing things up for me. I was too hung up on what other people would think or what other people would get out of it.

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