because you are strong enough…

These are some of my favourite words.

To be honest, I wrestle with them. Often!

Sometimes it feels like too much of an ask. It feels unfair.

The juggle. The challenges. The demands.

There is also an invitation in these words. It feels challenging. Asking us not to settle. To keep pushing through. And I get it. Sometimes that feels like too much of an ask as well.

The thing is, whether we are aware of it in the moment or not, we do keep pushing through. And we keep showing up. Inspite of the juggle, the challenges and the demands. On auto-pilot a lot of the time 🙂

So when next I take a moment and read these words, I am going to be gentle with myself. And give myself a high five! I hope you do the same, magic makers!

Love

Ray

because you are strong enough…

 

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Mmm, let’s talk about love!

I have thought about writing this post for a while, especially during Valentine’s month 🙂

Because boy, was the pressure on during Feb! My girls, God Bless them, are so ready for me to start dating. And remarry! #Jesustakethewheel

And they have given it some very serious thought. They had a serious list of reasons why they thought this would be a good idea. One of my favourites being, ‘so that you can have some help’. Like I live alone!

I appreciate their concern for me, and that they are looking at the right reasons – for the most part – for me to explore a relationship. I think they worry that I may be lonely or that I will always be single. What warms my heart is that they are okay. They understand that my relationship with their Dad has a different context now, and they are okay with that.

They feel safe and secure enough to be this open with me, and make their ‘concerns’ known.

It also reminds me of how important love is. For all of us, especially single-Moms.

So, to the magic-making-single Mom’s out there, let’s keep reminding ourselves that we deserve that love too.

Now – all that’s left is for me to pluck up some courage!

Love,

Ray

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Yes. No. Ok. Maybe…

A quick thought this Thursday morning!

I try my best to be a Mom that shows up. And for the most part – I do. In my human way. I think I am brave and can face pretty much anything.

The one thing that really does test my resolve?! A puking kid!

Jesus take the wheel! I just can’t.

Poor Beks puked spectacularly last Friday night (while she was sleeping), around 12.30pm. And as I heard her big sis, Bella, call out to her – the words in the pic popped into my head. Sheer avoidance tactic of having to face the inevitable. You will be pleased to know I did not leave it to Bella to sort out, as tempting as it was.

I showed up. I took care of my baby girl, did 3 loads of washing until 3am Saturday morning. Gave her a spot in my bed. etc. etc. I must admit though, I caught myself huffing – ‘I hope you plan on puking at your Dad’s next weekend. Same time. Same way’. I know. Not ideal. She did not hear me. Promise!

And then we rolled with what the weekend brought us.

That’s all we can do, Moms. Roll with it. And do what we must. 🙂 Better yet, dala what we must 🙂

One day at a time!

Love,

Ray

Keep making magic!

 

 

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The magic of the Pause…

My last blog post of 2017 was about self-care and what a necessary practice it is. Read more here

My first blog post of 2018 is about the magic of pausing. The definition of the word pause is to – interrupt action or speech briefly. I feel that if we allow ourselves to pause it helps us practice better self-careTo stop the action and the speech and just take a breath. One of my tribeswoman has the word ‘selah’ tattoed on her wrist. It is the biblically used word which means to pause. She chose the word to remind herself daily to practice pausing. Love that!

I have been doing a lot of pausing. The past few weeks have brought some challenging moments. I alluded to it in my previous post. What stopped me in my tracks was being booked off with burnout. It was a hard time. I was forced to stop. I was forced to rest. I was forced to look at how I got to that place and reevaluate. I had to pause. And in doing that, to choose myself. I had to get still and consider the next right move for me.

I wanted to start the year with this reminder – to remind us that it quickly becomes a slippery slope when we don’t pause and when we don’t practice self-care.

So while I don’t have any firm resolutions for 2018,  I am very clear on self-care and pausing. I am clear on being intentional and practicing consistency. And trusting that. And always trusting Him†

I hope that 2018 is all you hope for, need and deserve. May it hold love, hope, joy and every blessing for you and your family.

With love,

Ray

 

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Self-care is such a necessary practice…

The past two weeks have been hard. Flexing of the faith and resilience muscles were of paramount importance. And being gentle with myself through that was a very necessary practice too. Hence the quiet…

What led to the messiness of the last two weeks, in a nutshell, was poor self-care. I suck at self-care. And this was a jolting reminder that self-care is as important as the care I give to my girls. If not more so… Because if I am not okay, are they going to be okay?

But what does self-care look like and feel like? For me? For you?

I had to and continue to do some deep reflection around this. Because it is also very strongly wrapped up with self-love, self-acceptance, self-worth, self-respect, boundaries, vulnerability, courage etc etc etc

During the week of being booked off – one of my tribes women sent me a lovely reminder about self-care, written by Brianna Wiest, read here

It is a gentle and easy read. What I really needed to think about was ‘… And that often takes doing the thing you least want to do. It often means looking your failures and disappointments square in the eye and re-strategizing. It is not satiating your immediate desires. It is letting go. It is choosing new. It is disappointing some people. It is making sacrifices for others. It is living a way that other people won’t, so maybe you can live in a way that other people can’t.’

And the courage it takes to do so…

Let’s practice falling in love with ourselves. More. Deeply. So that we can practice taking better care of ourselves. More. Deeply.

With love,

Ray

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You are allowed to be a mess…

I came across this post earlier in the week. It was such a reality check. Thank God the reality checks keep on coming!

It feels messy at the moment.

I am not sure how effective my parenting skills are at the moment. Truth be told, I think the messy is clouding things. It feels like it has affected how I show-up with my girls. They have had a very brave conversation with me, in such a loving and clear way. It feels like it has affected my relationship with my eldest girl. Whom I think is very grateful to be spending this weekend in P.E. with her friend and their family!

And the juggle feels exhausting.

And still, I show-up. They are fed (miraculously), clean (another miracle) and have been writing exams and have been doing pretty well.

My point is, it’s okay to feel messy and still show-up and be the parent they need. Those things are not mutually exclusive. And sometimes, I tend to forget that.

I need to keep reminding myself that they need a #real #authentic mother, who show’s-up. Maybe not always in the right way. She just shows up. With her messy.

And that I keep giving myself the permission to be the #real #authentic mother and woman. Not just for them. For myself too.

I hope this encourages you to do the same…

With Love,

Ray

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Love + Understanding

‘Love and understanding. I like those words and the power they carry.’

My closing thoughts to my first blog post, published last week, read here

As I reflect on the last five years in particular, whether in a moment of gratitude – exhaustion or preparing a blog post, I am reminded of how empowering this principle has been to me.

Love and understanding has carried me this far. Giving me the courage and permission to do this journey, warts and all!

I’ve received it from family, friends and work colleagues. From unexpected sources. I receive it still. Daily. It has not been easy accepting it. I’ve had to learn to do so, graciously. Am I grateful that I have!

Giving it to myself – is my continued practice.

His love and understanding anchors me†

My hope is that you find your trusted sources of love and understanding.

You need it. You will continue to need it. You deserve it.

Remember to gift it to yourself too.

Actually, let’s also practice giving it to each other. More. Freely.

With love and understanding,

Ray

Be gentle with yourself

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