Another Super-Bowl Sunday comes and goes..

The morning of February 5, 2006 my team the Seattle Seahawks were preparing for their very first Super Bowl Sunday game as I prepared for my first hosting of my teams visit to the big games by throwing a party at my home.

Before the game could even start, as I hurried around preparing for the Big Day my phone rings. My Dad calls to say “Good Luck Today” “I’ll be routing for your Seahawks” we chatted and I said, got to go Dad. Still lots to do. Less then a hour after I hung up the phone, the phone rings again and the words uttered at the other end of that line dropped me to my knees. My dad was found dead when they went looking for him because he didn’t return from a walk he ventured out on with his dog.

As people showed for the party my husband shared the news and people graciously left as I sat by myself in tears for the better part of the day. Several

Super Bowls past before I even watched again as it was a reminder of all I put off that now could never transpire.

The one day I realized if it weren’t for the Seahawks making it to the Big Game on that very day, I wouldn’t even have had the opportunity to share the conversation we had that Morning. So looking at the glass half full, I was blessed to at least have that.

So I’m back to watching the big game but it’s still a reminder of all that was lost. A reminder that tomorrow is not promised. That putting off until tomorrow what should be done today is a risk that sometimes can’t be undone.

If you were here today Dad, I’d call you to say, Rhonda is better today then I’ve heard her be ever in my adult life. I know you always worried that she’d never find a path to some sort of wellness.

I’d call to say I love you, just because..

So if you love someone make sure you let them know. If you need to be someplace, get there.. because putting it off could very well mean it will never happen.

Growing up Broken..

There has just been a few times in my life I’ve opened up publicly about all I’ve been through. All I’ve walked away from and all I’ve turned my back on. I never look back or use the past as a crutch. I always keep moving forward. I don’t dwell on all I’ve been though even though at times I have to push it back down when the pain from the past starts to creep out of my inner soul.

Sometimes there seems to be no reason for the memories that cause the anxiety to shows it’s painful way to the surface and other times people whom chose to not put the abusive and violent ways behind them try to come at you and in some ways as if to try to guilt me into their failures or lack of strength to walk away like I did. They treat me like I was given a “break” to make it out of the viscous cycle I was born into.

The only break I got was a broken back.. literally.. No one handed me anything, not even a reached out hand.. I made the choice to find the path that took me out of that past I have worked so hard to put behind me.When I think about it though I have to give credit to one event. A event that shaped the beginning of the process of me changing and choosing a different path. It was the Day I saw Jesus. I know. You think I’m crazy. It was a day Like so many others.. fighting, yelling, beating in a trailer we lived in that was 10 ft wide maybe. The bedrooms very small. A twin bed along one wall that took up almost the entire width of the room, but there was just enough for my little body at 11 years old to fit between the wall and the end of the bed. I hid there repeating to myself ” I don’t want this life. God please help me” I remember saying it over and over and then I heard a mans voice speaking softly but firmly “This is not the life you have to have” I heard him say “I will always be by your side if you always hear me I will Lead you out” looking up from the corner of the floor where I was hiding, towards the door, I saw a light in the shape of a man.. I remember sitting there and a peaceful calm came over me. It was from that moment I knew to listen intently and I will find my way out. And that has been what I have done. For nearly 42 years now that’s been my roadmap. I talk to him daily and many times I get caught. People say, are you talking to yourself and I just say yes. But I know I’m talking to him. And I know he listens.

Years can go by and all is good and then something comes up that brings it all back.

Then I’m trapped in this spiral of feelings .. yes it’s family, but it’s family that if I stayed anywhere near them, their addictions, abusive behaviors and unlawful activities would have drug me down with them. Multiple prison terms for many of them, years and years and years of drug abuse and drug trafficking, prostitution for some has caught up to them. One in the Hospital tetoring at deaths door, another one homeless but still choosing to use and abuse .. and somehow it comes back to me as “My Fault” or “My Responsibility” to make life better for them, yet never, not once did they ever set out to make a better life for themselves.

What I needed today as I woke up to this was the day God provided for me. A day with what I know is most important. A day that is hard to make happen as my kids are adults. But today out of know where it came together and it was so needed. A reminder to me why I took the path I took. The path that led me to a loving husband and two beautiful kids that love their family. Kids that unlike me never saw the ugliness I saw as a child.

I stopped the cycle of abuse. I broke the odds. Today was a reminder to me that I did the right thing. And I’m not done. God put me on this path of strong and virtuous life to change this World where I can and I know I’m not done.

Tonight I’ll go to bed thankful for today and prayful for tomorrow. To know what direction or path to take as one life could be coming to a end. I pray that somehow God has been on the same path with them too.

If your out there and you think you want to break the cycle of abuse. Please trust God and find your strength to do it for you and for those you can bring into this world because you did.

Once Abused.. Can’t just Look the other way..

Once again, another sleepless night. Seems to be happening more frequently again..

You see, the way I can understand it for me is when you’ve endured abuse and live through it and gotten out of it, like I have because I fought back and I chose a different path. At a very young age I made that decision that it wasn’t going to define me.. and I won that battle, but where I struggle is seeing it all around me.. Abuse, it takes on so many roles: emotional, verbal, sexual, financial, elder, power.. I’m that person who will speak up and speak out all the time, the disheartening and let’s say exhausting part is watching so many Just Look the other way as if it’s becoming the Normalcy in the world we live in today.

Have we become that nation that so many will take the time to record the abuse rather then step in and stop it.

How many times have I heard, “it’s none of our business” or “it’s not your place” when in Turn I’m saying “It’s not right” or “what if that was you, wouldn’t you want help?”

So for social acceptance am I just supposed to sit down now and except that this is the way it is? If only just one person could feel in my heart and see in my head what I feel and see, I wouldn’t feel so alone..

Somewhere out there someplace there is someone that gets what I’m saying. Someone that is going through what I’m going through. Someone, Someplace, Somewhere… I know I’m not alone in this battle.

Growing up Broken; Learning Not To Run 

My favorite quote is “Turn Your Wounds Into Wisdom ~ O.W.” This comes out of knowing first hand that it’s exhausting to continually run from the pain.     Growing up I had a childhood that wasn’t ideal to say it mildly. I learned at a very young age that “I” was what would get me to the next day. I took that character into adult hood and as I went through my days I worked so hard to make sure “I” made it happen. Not just for me but as I aged for my kids and my husband. It was me that would make it safe and secure because I certainly didn’t trust anyone to have that responsibility. Not with me or the ones I loved and felt the need to protect. If I worked hard enough it would take care of us all. And I did financially and for them I was there emotionally too, but as the authoritarian not as the mothering nurturing role. Yet I was the mother. My husband stayed home with our kids. Again that was out of a sense of fear. Not wanting to be in a position of helplessness and homeless as I was so many times as a child. Always Running from one disaster to another. Waking up not knowing where tomorrow would find me at as a child I was determined to never have those fears and to make sure my children didn’t either. 

     When I hit 50 it became a whirlwind of emotions as I realized how fast the time had gone. How because “I never stopped to smell the Roses” as so many speak of the memories were so faint. The kids are raised and I am exhausted and still broken. The constant running to make sure I had “safe” never really took care of me. It’s like 15 years of abuse as a child came crashing down all around. 

     I have a mother that still today likes to Guilt you into feeling small. Insignificant in so many ways. Her 14 marriages including one to a man that should rought in Hell wasnt enough. Although she finally found one that was more worthy then she probably deserves and she appears to have found happiness. God forbid if anyone else does. 

     My mother raised my sister and I both as we are only 16 months apart. I’m the younger. I sit and wonder how I found it in me to “Run” as I call it. Emancipated at 16 is where my running journey began. I had my GED (required as part of the Imancipation process) so my full time employment started then. Started full time at a restaurant and moved up to manager, turning that position into a company I created to clean the entire chain of restaurants. That’s when I saw that entrepreneurial spirit in me. The harder your work the more you get paid.. you want more, you do more, sell more. Self employment was in my blood. It gave me a way to then again be in control of my security. Or so I thought. Again. Always running. Never slowing down to think, process and inevitably to heal. 

     My sister, she didn’t run, she stayed in the toxic environment and turned to prostitution and drugs. Her entire life starting at about 17. So why me? What gave me that sense to run!! Both from the same cloth, raised the same way.. My answer to that is “I saw God” I know. Your thinking, yeah sure you did. But I did. I was curled up in the corner of my very small bedroom. (The trailer we lived in was 10 ft wide so yes the bedroom was very small) curled up there because the fighting, throwing things and violanance was more then I could bare and I knew if I didn’t run and hide I’d be next.. (Another gem of a husband. I think that was #7) As I cried in that corner begging for another life ( I was 11) I saw a light hovering in front and above me. It was a silhouette of a man with long hair. From that light I heard him say to me, “Follow me, I’ll keep you safe.” From that moment I knew I’d make it out. That man (God) and I had regular conversations, I would get yelled at for talking to myself but I didn’t try to explain I was talking to him. They would never have believed me anyway. 


I tried on so many occasions to get my sister to believe that what I saw and who I hear in my head was real and that if we followed the light and the voice in my head, we would both be ok. I can’t explain how I new what directions to take but I always did. The voice in my head guided me. People would ask me “how did you know that” I would just say, I don’t know, it just came to me. This still happens to me today at times. I just trust it and follow. But what I try to do today is heal me from my past. I’m tired of running.. tired of it’s all on me. If I can help just one person to know that running isn’t the answer, that you yourself are not expected to do it all alone, that trusting those around you, that tearing down those walls will give you a more secure emotional base then that too will help me as I heal myself.  

I want to write a book. I’ll title it “Growing Up Broken”

     What are my biggest accomplishments. I succeeded at? you might ask. I Broke The Cycle.. The Abuse stopped at me. 

My sister unfortunately wasn’t so lucky. She had three kids and all three suffered. All adults now they are working on letting go of their violent and abusive pasts. I keep praying for them to hang on strong and pull hard very hard to shut that door permanently. 

     My next chapter.. only God knows for sure but what I’m sure about is.. I’m no longer running.  

Is age just a number?

You know what the age-old saying is? “Age is just a number” or is it? I will tell you that age when your body is yelling at you because you have not done what it needs you to do feels that age is much more than a number. It is a feeling. It’s a feeling so deeply rooted that until you can sit back and think about how you feel now versus how your felt them you can’t completely understand.

As a very unfit and unhealthy person, the older I got the louder my body was screaming at me. Simple things like 2 beers made me so sick I would spend the night and entire next day recovering from what seemed to be a hangover but realizing now it was a sugar high and then crash as my pancreas was not producing the right amounts of insulin for my grossly obese body I had encased my being in.

The stress I was causing my body with the poor diet and 335 plus lbs I was carrying around was a contributor to the Stage 3 hypertension the Dr stated I had.. and in fact her words and let me quote her were ” You are immanent for a heart attack or stroke”  Not words one wants to hear at 49 years old. And to prove age is not a number I was a walking talking 70 plus year old at the time.. I just didn’t realize it. Those words changed my life. I went to my car and cried in the privacy of a hospital parking lot. I was talking to myself, ( to know me, you would know I do that a lot) and my questions to me was, Did God really put me through hell as a Child and teen to guide me to an area of survival to end up this way? The answer was clear, and it was “No, He Didn’t” so at that moment I made the choice to get on a path of emotional and Physical health.

In a previous post in my blog entitled My Journey I outline how I have done and how I am still striving for the weight-loss goal. But today I want to talk about that to some dreaded number. I will be 52 in May and I wouldn’t want to be any other age. I feel better today then I did at 30, my energy is better than most around me at the same age and even younger. I guess not I can say I understand that age is just a number. I look younger because I put in my body what it needs.. That is the message I want to send. Everything that goes into your mouth is a source of food or poison for your body and your body will react accordingly. There is a sense of accountability if you look at it that way. I know, not fun to actually ask yourself this before every bite. “Will my body like or dislike this?” “Is this providing a benefit or a non benefit to my body’s health?” It is not an easy thing to do and even all I have been through I have those bad days, but it is OK. Get back on track and remind yourself to be conscious of your choice. Yes I will have that cake tonight so I will eat something higher in protein and lower in fat and sugars for lunch.. Plan around the inevitable bad days. Sometimes they just can not be avoided.

It took me 49 year to get unhealthy to the point of nearly no return. Expect it to take time, Months, Years to get to a point of health and that is OK. Every good decision puts you just that much closer to these decisions becoming a habit to where you crave them .

I’m looking forward to celebrating my birthday in May.. Yes it is number 52 and it’s ok. Because when you feel good, AGE IS JUST A NUMBER .. Be Blessed Everyone ❤

My Journey

Its come to my attention that people who claim to know me are saying things they know nothing about so to set the record straight this is My Journey.. Jan 2015 I joined weight watchers because I needed to be healthier..I also made the decision to quite drinking.. I started a 1200 calorie a day regimen.. eliminated alcohol and went gluten-free.. By Sept 2015 I was 70 lbs lighter.. at my Dr’s request I went to speak to a bariatric surgeon and she suggested I get a VSG procedure (Vertical Sleave Gastrectomy) and I actually said no.. I’m doing fine.. She educated me on where the stomach hormone is created and how when you have a stretched out stomach from being a chronic over eater creates more of the hunger hormone then a successful diet and regimen withstands and that all a VSG does is correct the size of a overeaters stomach to that of a non over eater, and one that will fit my new habits.. She actually gave me this analogy and I will share it with you.. If you were to injure your knee and stretch the tendons you would let a surgeon get inside that knee and repair it so the injury could heal? I said of course I would, She said “Why wont you let me repair what the years of overeating did to your stomach? Sept 21 a mere 3 weeks later because I had already proved to her that my life style change was in fact permanent, I had a VSG procedure.. Humbly I will say I am 17 lbs heavier than my lowest weight.. Why, because it is a constant battle to stay the course of healthier eating.. I still don’t drink and wont drink because of the lives I have seen destroyed and Because of the judgement I have endured although I don’t judge.. You want to drink, go for it.. I don’t.. I love life and spend time with those that love life and human spirit as much as I do.. you can post your comments, you can attempt to disparage me all you want because I know what I know.. and I know for a fact you don’t.. I have never hid the fact that I made the choice to have the VSG..

On the weight loss side if anyone out there thinks that no matter how you change your life for the better, even for those that chose a procedure, that is their journey and for those that have never walked it let me tell you this.. I am in support groups for weight loss.. it’s a journey and no matter what journey you are on, its hard.. bypass, VSG, band.. not one of these paths is taking the easy path.. Many, Many people on this journey fail.. Weight comes back.. I am here to pick any of you up and help you reach the top.. Shame on anyone that wants to disparage one because they have chosen a path you don’t like.. or maybe one that you dont have the courage to accomplish..

The struggle is real.. I’ve lived it.. In fact I am still living it.. I’m a overeater.. I’m an emotional eater, but even the likes of people who hate wont take me off my path.. They are not worth it.. I am more valuable than that..

Big Hugs to all that are on this journey.. Together we can all make it to goal.. One day ❤

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