Why 2016 Sucked! And the Good that Came from it

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So some of you may have noticed that I have been MIA lately. I’d say I’ve been gone for quite some time. Even when I wrote a post, I wasn’t fully engaged with my blog or with all of you. There are a few reasons but the main one is that 2016 turned out to be a major disappointment for me. In other words, 2016 sucked ass!

I’m not into making new year’s resolutions but I did set some goals for myself throughout 2016, none of which panned out. I failed to meet any of them and when I fail at something, I tend to become my own worst enemy. When that happens, depression starts to seep in and take hold. Depression is something I have struggled with my whole life. Most days I win the battle. However, there have been some days where getting out of bed has proven to be my biggest obstacle.

2016_rockinrandommomFor example, one goal I set for myself this year was to finish one of my novels. I also planned to publish my first e-book by December. Neither happened. I have felt uninspired to write much. I think maybe it has to do with productivity or rather, the lack thereof. Not working and not having the proper transportation to work has taken it’s toll. Sending out resumes left and right and not receiving any responses or opportunities for job interviews has been an obstacle. With no inspiration and no job prospects in sight for 2016, feeling a sense of purpose was virtually non-existent and that has somewhat hindered my mental health.

I have also not worked out or gone for a hike in something like 6 months or so. You all know that I thrive and feel so much better about myself and about life when I am able to get outdoors and go for my hikes. Failure to do so this past year has made me realize how much I need it in my life.

Then to end the year with the complete freak show of our so-called presidential election… Well, I won’t even get into that. I’ve already written my take on that so consider this subject matter closed. I am not the only one who had it rough this year. I have spoken to several people who could not wait for 2016 to end.

2016_rockinrandommom 2016 hasn’t been all doom and gloom though. When I feel this down about my life I remind myself of the things I do have. I have my health. I have my wonderful boys who are doing so well that their happiness keeps me afloat and I tell myself that at least I’m doing something right. They remind me every day that life isn’t all about these secondary things. Life is so much more if we simply take the time to see it.

I also know that I must be doing something right somewhere because the universe has seen fit to add a new person to my life. Of the romantic sort. In September I met someone. He and I have been doing well but the best part is we are taking the time to really get to know each other. Only a few people know about him. My boys do not. I’m not one of those parents who introduces her kids to the first person they date right away. I am taking my sweet time with this one because I want to make sure I’m ready and my boys are ready. He understands this and it makes me appreciate him more.

2016_gratitude_rockinrandommomThis romance was completely unexpected too. I wasn’t looking for anything. Neither was he. We hit it off right away though, talking like we’ve known each other our whole lives. He’s funny and sweet. He’s romantic but in a fun way. He’s not over the top, which I really like. He’s so understanding too. He understands that my ex is a part of my life and that I love my kids more than anything. Best of all, he’s genuine. He’s honest and straight forward with me without being mean or disrespectful.

Then there is my best friend. She and I have gotten each other through a lot of tough times this past year. There were a lot of late night texts and phone calls that witnessed many bitch sessions and shed tears. I am so glad she is in my life.

Maybe the beginning of this post was a little misleading but as I reflect on 2016, I realize just how blessed I am and I am happy. The ex-husband has become a good friend. Adam and Conner are growing and thriving every day. My best friend and I are closer than we’ve ever been and I have a truly amazing man who only adds smiles and laughter to my days.

2016 sucked but let’s think positive! May 2017 be our Year!!

Thanks so much for reading!

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I am linking this with:

 

Cuddle Fairy
Diary of an imperfect mum
Modern Dad Pages

Domestic Violence Affects Children

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Somewhere between 3 and 4 million children witness domestic violence in the home in the U.S alone. According to government statistics, 95% of these cases are reported to be women victims of a violent male partner and it’s the children who witness these violent acts. This puts children in a very fearful position. It makes them anxious and hyper vigilant because they never know when the next beating will occur or what will cause it.

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Make no mistake, this is a traumatic event and the children are being just as traumatized, if not more, as the mother. In helping to spread awareness of Domestic Violence and trying to end it, I am going to do something pretty rare here on my blog. I’m going to share a personal story that very few people even know about.

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I think I was about 5 or 6, maybe closer to 5. I remember waking up to noise. It was night time. I remember because my window was straight ahead when I sat up in my bed. I remember hearing yelling and a deep voice responding with louder yelling. I knew it was my mom’s boyfriend, Charlie. He was a scary guy. He was really tall, dark hair and dark eyes. I never liked him from the moment my mom started dating him. He was violent, especially after several beers.

This night was particularly bad. By the time I got downstairs, I knew the familiar chaos before me. I can’t remember where my younger siblings were because my first priority was my mother.

I went upstairs and grabbed my mother’s gun. I picked up the loaded gun, not thinking about anything but getting to my mother. When I got to her though, it seemed as if she was so far away. He towered over her 5′ 2” frame, relentlessly wailing on her. I raised the gun to point it at him but when I did, fear gripped me. I hadn’t even realized until that moment that I was even scared. What if, like in the Christmas Story, I somehow shot myself in the eye instead? What if I ended up shooting my mother? What if I missed him completely and he came after me? The most pressing question any 5 year old would ask once the police walked in the door: What if the police arrest me instead of him because I shot him?1in4_rockinrandommom

What happened next is a bit of a blur. My mom tells me that after the police arrested Charlie, one officer stayed behind to talk to me. My mom doesn’t remember if it was her or the officer who got the gun from my hand because all she remembers is me telling the officer, “I’m gonna kill him! I’m gonna kill him!” My mom says that I was really angry and I was crying.

What I remember is how heavy the gun felt in my small hands. What I remember is how scared I was and how, when it came time to protect my mother and use that gun, I froze in fear. Eventually one of them got the gun from me and my mom said that’s why she never had a gun since and never will again. That isn’t the point of this story though. The point is, I was terrified of so many things and for so many reasons. Charlie had beat my mom before but this is the one event I remember because of how traumatized I was and how watching my mother get beat repeatedly by him and others, it carried over into my adulthood.

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I swore I would never let a man hit me! I never have either. However, in protecting myself, I hit my ex a few times, just because I felt threatened. Some part of me knew he wasn’t going to hit me but the hyper-vigilant part of me didn’t, so I hit first.  I never saw myself as being abusive towards him. I saw it as being proactive in defending myself. This was also part of my PTSD. I know now that it was the wrong thing to do. Therapy taught me that. No one deserves to be hit – man, woman, or child.

Domestic violence affects children in many different ways. They can become the victim of abuse, or they can become the abuser. Many children living in abusive homes end up on drugs, with mental disorders, and/or in jail. They also are at a high risk of becoming suicidal. We can stop this but we have to speak out. It’s time we break the chains.

I’m going to leave an inspirational video that I made because we need to be inspired to stand up and end the cycle of abuse. It’s not too late to stop the violence and change our children’s futures!

 

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I am linking this with:

http://viewfrominhere.com/waywow-linkup-14-new-rules-all-posts-welcome/
#MidLifeLuv Linky
My Random Musings