Caregiving

It is so important as a caregiver not to become so enmeshed in the role that you forget yourself. It's neither good for you nor your loved one.

Dana Reeve
14May

Forever Broken: My Mental Health Journey

Hi everyone!

I just wanted to hop on and share a video with you. Mental Health is a topic we don't talk enough about. I hope my journey can help you or someone you know. Thank you Brittany Minor a.k.a "Clumps of Mascara for inspiring me to share. Mental Health isn't a 31 day conversation, this is a lifetime journey and we all need to support each other. 

 

 

Here are the tips that I shared in the video. They've really helped me on the journey & I pray they help you too. 

1) Write it down- Sharing your feelings on paper can help you when saying them is just not an option.

2) Don't be judgemental- We all struggle and we can learn from each other. 

3) Change the narrative- Understand the power of your words and thoughts. Don't forget you have the power to change your life. 

4) Pray constantly or find your faith- My faith in God grounds me. 

5) Forgive yourself- It's not always going to be perfect. But, that's ok. Understand that these momentary setbacks or issues are temporary. They only become permanent if you let it be that way. 

 

Finally, be good to yourself. You're so worth it! Mental Health is a daily fight and I'm here with you. Until we meet again!

 

Xo 

Posted in Front Page, Caregiving

01January

Five Tips For Stepping Into The Light in 2017

Happy New Year everyone! I hope you've had an amazing holiday filled with family and friends. I just wanted to drop a quick vlog to kick off 2017. My plan for 2017 is to focus on "stepping into the light". I typically am a "behind the scenes" type of person. I always have felt comfortable just doing what I need to do, and moving on quietly. But, I'm learning that the call on my life is too big for that. 

I'm learning that my journey can help someone, so I can't be afraid to share it. So, I want you to take the journey of "stepping into the light" with me.  To kick things off, here are five tips to help you get started. Let me know what you think, and anything I can share that will make it easier for you. We're in this together :-).

 

 

1.  Here are some of my favorite books & podcasts:

     The Secret by Rhonda Byrne 

     The Year of Yes by Shonda Rhimes

     I'm Judging You by Luvvie Ajayi 

     Heart and Hustle Podcast 

     Happy Black Woman Podcast 

    Stuff Mom Never Told You Podcast 

 

2. You're the happiness that you seek. When you're happy, everyone will be happy. Be open to being happiness, and make yourself a priority.

 

3. Take care of yourself physically. Do whatever you need to do to make your body/health a priority. Be proactive about your health.

 

4. Take the time to connect with people who will pull you into the light. Don't be afraid of people who make you step outside of your comfort zone. 

 

5. Just step out. Take a chance on yourself, and do the things that you never thought you could do. Don't let the end of 2017 look like the end of 2016. 

 

We've got this! This is just the beginning of our journey, it's not about perfection. It's about living our best life. Let's thrive in the sun together. I can't wait to hear about how you're doing. Until we meet again!

 

Xo

 

Posted in Front Page, Caregiving

20December

Holidays & At Home Hearing Tests with Miracle Ear

 

 Hi everyone! Are you ready for the holidays? I’m still shopping; but I’m almost done. Thank you Jesus!! My budget and spirit are especially happy laughing. I can’t wait to sit down and spend time catching up with my mom and sister. I know I see them everyday. But, it’s so hard with all of the demands of work and life to spend true quality time catching up. I really love those times.

That’s when I get to hear all of the stories of my mom’s childhood. It’s so inspiring to hear all of the love, and the simplicity of things back then. I also love getting the good “deets” or “tea” on how my mom used to act when she was younger wink. My mom was a quite a pistol back in the day, so I don’t want to miss anything. That’s why I was so excited to partner with Miracle Ear.

 

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Image: Giphy

We really take our hearing for granted. I spend over 50% of my day listening to loud music in my car or through my headphones, and I couldn’t tell you the last time I got my hearing tested. Unfortunately, it was something I didn’t make a priority. So, imagine how surprised I was to find out that Miracle Ear offers FREE at home hearing tests. Yep, you can do it at home.

 

mj
Image: Giphy

All you need to do is sign on to your computer, and go to the Miracle Ear website. Once on the site, you’ll click on the hearing test feature; and begin the test. The test is super easy; it mimics different scenarios where you’re having a conversation with someone in a public place with background noises   (e.g. home, coffee shop, train station, etc.). The goal is to make sure you’re able to follow the conversations, and you’ll be asked questions to make sure you captured the conversation. Gone are the days of listening for the beep. This test uses real-life situations to evaluate your hearing levels.

Hearing Test 

Your results are available immediately after the test, and you’re given tips on things you can do to preserve your hearing, or advised if you should be evaluated further for a hearing device. The information is presented in a way that shows Miracle Ear wants to be your partner in ensuring your hearing is enhanced and/or preserved. You’re even able to email the results to yourself to review later, or share with your family.

Resources

 

Miracle Ear really wants to make sure we’re living our best lives possible through preserving or enhancing our hearing. I would totally give this test to mom. Mom tends to get nervous when we go to any doctor’s office. But, this at home hearing test gives me an easy way to get an idea of her hearing levels in a non-intrusive way. That can be a god’s send when dealing with seniors. Their independence is so important to them, and they’re scared of anything that jeopardizes that.

 

So, thank you Miracle Ear for making me think about my own hearing, on top of giving me a solution that I can use for my mom. Make sure you check out this great test, and all of the things that Miracle Ear offers. We also deserve to “hear a better day”. Until we meet again!

 

 

Xo

Posted in Front Page, Caregiving

11December

Realness and Blogalicious 8

Hi everyone! I hope your week has been amazing. It’s time to talk about the one thing that I struggle with, and I think a lot of people struggle with too. It’s time to talk about my journey, and how I took the leap to be transparent at all places, Blogalicious 8.

Be Blogalicious is a multicultural influencer organization that strives to create a place of inclusion, connection and collaboration. They have so many resources & the community is so inspiring. So, when I had a chance to attend their annual conference I knew I had to do it. With this being my “Year of Yes” too, I also took the chance and signed up to volunteer. I’m lo-key shy, so this was a big leap for me. But, the leap paid off, and I was selected for the “Social Squad”.

 

Social Squad boo, @pumpsandcircumstance
Social Squad boo, @pupmsandcircumstance and I having fun!

As a member of the “Social Squad” you work behind the scenes at the conference doing anything from putting gift bags together, to setting up stage settings for keynote talks. It was amazing! We worked hard, but the camaraderie of the “Social Squad” was amazing. Everyone was just down to help, and there were no egos. It was just a group of like-minded people getting it done. I definitely will submit to volunteer again.

 

But, that was only a part of the specialness of Blogalicious 8 for me. I learned so many great things from the speakers, and met my “She-Ro” Luvvie Ajayi. She is the amazing “Side-Eye Sorceress & “Wacky Wordsmith”, who is a NY Times Best-Selling Author of “ I’m Judging You”. You must check it out, everyone else is (e.g. Bono, Ava Duvernary, Uzo Adaba, Gabrielle Union, etc.), it’s a must read or listen!

 

Luvvie Ajayi & I
Luvvie Ajayi & I (This made my year!!)

I also got the opportunity to attend an amazing event with Jack Daniels. Jack Daniels is one of my favorite cocktails, and I’ve used it in recipes and as my drink of choice for years. I truly am a #FriendofJack. P.S. Their Winter Jack is impeccable. Definitely, try it out for a nice cider or hot toddy.

 

Winter Jack
Winter Jack Daniels Cocktail #FriendofJack

 

But, the highlight of my time at Blogalicious 8 was my time with AARP. I had an opportunity to share my caregiving story, and I didn’t realize how emotional that would be for me. I’m wrapping up year six of my journey with my mom & sister, and I can’t believe how far we’ve come. It’s amazing how time makes things more bearable when at first they seemed impossible.

 

I never thought I would be able to tell anyone about the times that I thought I wasn’t going to make it. Or, the times when I wanted to kill myself and leave my mom and sister to fend for themselves. I was so low, and I had to fight for them and my sanity. I feel so blessed to be where I am now. But, it wasn’t easy. It took a lot of honesty, faith and counseling to get where I am now. But, I thank God I made it. I thank God that he gave me the strength to remember that I made a vow to stand in my truth, if I made it through. So, I shared my journey and it went viral. I still can’t believe it. Over 200K people saw my story, and could identify with my journey. That’s such a blessing. That let me know that sharing my journey is the right path for my life. It also showed that I can be honest an real, and people will identify with me.

 As an influencer there’s always the pressure to make everything look so curated. But, life is not curated. People want realness, and that’s all I have time for anymore. I don’t have the energy or time to fake it. I’ll give you great content and beautiful images, but you can bet it’s going to be the real deal. So, be you and do you!

 

That’s the biggest lesson I learned at Blogalicious 8, and I’m so glad I took the time to invest in me. Invest in yourself, and you may be pleasantly surprised about what you learn. You deserve to live your most authentic life, and that only comes by being honest with yourself. So, take a chance on you! I can’t wait to hear about what you do!

 

 

Until we meet again!

 

Xo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Front Page, Caregiving

19September

Magical Weekends and Magical Dining

What's up everybody? I hope your week is starting off good. My Monday has been crazy. I almost had a flashback to my last "Tuesday that felt like a Monday". You know that one after Labor Day. All I can say, is "Le Struggle cry.   But, I've decided to focus this week thinking about happy thoughts. So, I have to tell you about my magical weekend with my sister.

 

Tracey always works on Saturday, and she's normally tired when she comes home. But, this week we decided we needed to have a "night out", and we went to Seasons 52 for Magical Dining. Magical Dining is this amazing time of the year ( August 29th- October 2nd), where restaurants put together an amazing three-course prix menu for $33. One dollar from every meal served goes to a charity. This year the proceeds are going to The Russell Home for Atypical Children. So, you get a great meal while supporting an amazing cause. Tracey and I really look forward to Magical Dining. As caregivers, we have to "ball on a budget". So, we really appreciate every opportunity we can find to have fun affordably. Interested yet? Well check out the food smile.

 

Seasons 52

Posted in Front Page, Caregiving

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