What is that? It's hard to be happy about a day that was created to celebrate men. I've had very limited experiences with men that deserve to enjoy this day. Just like Mother's day I guess with Father's Day we can celebrate the men who have brought another human into the world. I have learned over the years to except people for who and what they are just because they have a certain title don't mean they live up to that title. The men in my life and there were a few. My biological father I always knew who he was and would be around him from time to time until I was 5 then I didn't see him again until I was 17. I am his only child, he was in and out of jail for most of my life, he was a heroin addict who passed away in 2012 (on Valentine's Day) from complications from years of addiction. When he passed away I can say that we were friends. When my father came back in my life we struggled to build a relationship because I was angry, hurt and I didn't understand his addiction. As the years went on we became closer, we built a friendship that was very unique filled with love, acceptance and understanding which allowed him to be the best grandfather he could be to his grandchildren. My step-dad and I use the term lightly because I don't believe in "step"; this man came into my life when I was just 5 years old and I wasn't really introduced to him until we were moving in to live with him and I was told that I had to call him dad and I had a new little sister. Today I can say that I love him but I spent a lot of time hating him. He was very abusive to me to the point that I pretty much grew up in the system. The system failed me because I was a child that was allowed to continuously be placed back in the home. I can honestly say that it wasn't always bad but it was always hard. Growing up I had a love hate relationship with him when it was good it was really good but when it was bad I was terrified of him. By the time he passed in 2003 I can say that we were friends and had an understanding. By this time he and I had mended our relationship and I understood why he treated me the way he did and was at peace about our situation. My maternal grandfather from what I remember was one of the best representations of a man that I can remember. I loved my granddad and he was very caring and loving but he lived in Detroit so I was only around him on limited occasions until he died. My paternal grandfather, what can I say? Most of my memories of him are from when I was around the family when I was very young. I spent time with him doing family things and reunions in the beginning but when I reunited with my family at the age of 17 he was living in New Jersey and he would only come to town a few times a year and our interaction was one of I love you because I'm suppose to not because I felt that he really loved me. And our relationship has progressively gotten more and more strained now that my father has passed. I love him but I don't feel like I'm part of the family and he don't show that I'm part of the family and now that I have moved across the country to California it's like we don't have a relationship at all. I could go on and on with my stories of the men in my life but they are pretty much the same. They were around but I knew who they were but it wasn't much representation of what a dad should be. I can say that out of all the men in my life I do have a man that when and if I get married I wouldn't mind mirroring my husband after and that would be my "cousin-uncle-dad" I call him this because he is my cousin but I grew up calling him uncle because he was so much older than me and dad because he and his wife took me in one of the times I left home and this was the only time I can honestly say that I lived in a loving home. I watched him love, nurture, care for, give and understand on those around him to a point that sometimes I didn't even know how to receive it. This was the only time in my life that I personally seen and received a dad in action and for him it gave me hope that GREAT dad's do exist. So I will end this post with the same thing that started it.....being a father don't make you a dad but it is the holiday to honor all those that brought children into this world. HAPPY FATHER'S DAY to all the father's in the world God bless and we must do better by our children.
Many Blessings & Much Love
Definition - n. any of various diseases or conditions marked by inflammation of the skin, especially lupus vulgaris or lupus erythematosus. (google)
This definition meant nothing to me. I had no clue what it was or how it affected the body. I just knew that my God-sister had it. I can say that I don't really know that much more about it today than I did when I lived with and helped take care of my God-sister. All I knew was I once again was being removed from my home due to the abuse and I was asked by the courts where did I want to go my first response was my grandmother but that was quickly shut down because the courts was informed that my biological father and his brothers were on drugs and had access to the house which made it an unsafe environment for me the courts agreed and asked if I had a second choice. I told them I wanted to go to my God mother's in Erie not aware of the current situation she was dealing with. She said I could come live with her and the courts approved the placement. It is now the beginning of the sixth grade and I am moving in with my God mother. To my surprise I walk in and my God-sister is in a wheelchair, limbs retracted, hole in her throat, tube in her stomach and I'm like what's wrong with her. I was told she was in a coma yet another situation I wasn't aware of. From what I was told my God-sister had flew to Erie in the winter to visit someone and had a Lupus flair, she went to the hospital it which time she slid into a coma. I don't know all the details on how she was brought home to live but what I can talk about is how I lived with her and cared for her. I lived with my Godmother and God-sister my whole middle school years and during this time it became a part of my life to care for not only my God-sister but also my Godmother who wasn't coping well with how her daughter was. I feel as though God sent me to her at a time she really needed someone there. Although I know how much they loved me I don't think it was the best place for me. I was coming from an abusive home to have to quickly learn how to care for my God-sister. We had a nurse that would come in the home and help care for my God-sister but most of the time it was up to us and other family members. I learned how to dress her, do her physical therapy, clean her tracheal tube, re-insert her feeding tube, bathe, put her in and out of the bed, care for bedsores, everything she needed. My relationship with my Godmother became more and more stained as the time went on for several reasons; although I knew she loved me I wasn't feeling it because her drinking and marijuana smoking became an all day thing and she didn't have time to help me with what I was going through and I began to act out and argue a lot with her. I would come home late, I would stay at church when I wasn't suppose to, I wouldn't come straight home from school and ended up losing my virginity while living with her. We would argue so much that my God-sister would cry, cough out her tracheal tube, or pull her feeding tube out of her stomach to get us to stop. When she would do this I would always feel bad and guilty for acting out but I didn't have anyway to let out what I was going through and I felt that my Godmother felt like I should have just been happy that I wasn't living at home. What I keep trying to explain to her was I might not be getting beat on but what I was going through with her wasn't any better. I spent most days caring for my God-sister because when we didn't have help there my Godmother was in no condition to care for her. I would have to get up in the mornings and care not only my God-sister but change the sheets in the bed before my Godmother woke up because she would be so drunk she would use the bathroom on herself before the nurse would come so I could go to school. My Godmother finally found a rehab that would take my God-sister in North Carolina and when she got ready to take her she told me it would be best if I moved back home with my parents and while they moved to North Carolina I ended back at home yet again. I wasn't home but a month when I received a call from my Godmother telling me that my God-sister had passed away. She asked my parents if I could go to the funeral and they told her "NO." No one talked to me or explained to me that it wasn't my fault that my God-sister died. I lived with the guilt for years thinking if I was there she wouldn't have died. I thought that I did something wrong. As a result of me not being able to go to the funeral I lost all contact with my Godmother until 2004. Even God reunited us our relationship has been strained. I may talk to her once or twice a year now. When we reconnected I found out all that she went through after my God-sister passed; she received a settlement from the hospital, she lived in Atlanta for some time had opened a club that she ended up losing because of her drinking, she almost died as a result of her drinking and various other things and now she is back in North Carolina still struggling with her sobriety while harboring much anger. I have got to a point of peace in my life and I can't receive what she is giving out and I chose to love her from a distance. I support her as much as I can while not allowing her to suck me into self pity. I feel that God has us on this earth for more than that and we have a job to do so I'm being obedient to him and when and if she decides to get it together I am here for her. She can't love me and mine when she don't love herself!
Many Blessings & Much Love
Last week blogs were dedicated to my daughter ReShande-ReShe who I lost to SIDS at the age of ten months. Losing my daughter that way led to a lot of sleepless nights. I had three more children after she passed and two of them suffer from asthma. Over the last 21 years since she has been gone I remember going in my children's room placing my head on their chest, putting my hand on them just checking to make sure they were breathing. I would be sitting another room while they were sleep and would call their name just to hear their voice. My children are now 15, 16 and 20 and I still will have conversations with them when they are sleep. Even though I know they are well past the age of SIDS, I will probably will have them talk to me throughout the rest of my life. It gives me a sense of peace and helps me be ok. The process to where I am today has been a daily work in progress. They say time heals all pain I beg to differ. Time teaches you how to live with the pain, understand the pain, allow the pain not to take over your life. As long as I live I will miss and have unanswered questions regarding my daughter. I don't care if I have 1,000 children it will never take away the pain I feel for my daughter that met such an untimely death to something that 21 years later still can't be explained. As I have forgave, healed, and grew spiritually and mentally I can say that I don't have as many bad days as I did when she first passed away. My life was forever changed the day my daughter passed away. I was angry at God first, then I was lost and confused, overwhelmed, hurt, scared but God. He continued to keep me, giving me the will to live and love. He blessed me with three beautiful children that are very talented. My son who plays the clarinet, and steel pan drums, daughter who has been in the National Honor Society since the 4th grade and dances on a competitive dance team, and my youngest daughter is a Couture Fashion Designer designing since the age of 6 and in business since the age of 8. So with everyday that I live I am so grateful that God has kept me and I have been able to move forward to better days. I look forward to living out the rest of my days in happiness and peace knowing that I will be with my daughter again one day but until then I have a purpose on this earth and I plan on fulfilling it. I will not stop until the vision that God placed on me comes to pass. REST WITH GOD RESHANDE-RESHE mommy loves you and will see you again!
Many Blessings & Much Love
How are you doing this morning? Blessed, as we wake up we have another day of God's grace and mercy. We have another opportunity to get it right, to do better than we did yesterday. As I continue to share my personal experience with SIDS today I will be talking more about how God continued to keep me in what I must say is one of the lowest points in my life. I stated earlier that I was walking around in a fog so there will be a lot that I can't share, I know I made it because I am here today but I do have gaps in my memory and over the years I have come to realize that it was part of the divine protection of God. If I would have been fully there who knows what choices and decisions I would have made and how much I would have hurt myself and others during that time. So today I can say that I am truly grateful for that. I will be talking today about the birth of my first child after losing my daughter. Just in case you didn't read the previous post here is a little snap of what happened. October 17, 1994 my daughter was born, August 1, 1995 was my birthday, August 6 or 7, 1995 found out I was pregnant, August 13, 1995 my daughter passed away from SIDS. I'm pregnant at home on a leave of absence from college, working and trying to keep my relationship together. I am very sick going back and forth to the doctors; it's getting further into my pregnancy and my relationship is going down fast we spend more time arguing than getting along and we decide to break up. We ended up having a big blow up and physical altercation that finally resulted in him moving out. Once he moved out we spent some time not speaking because I was really hurt about the altercation. I couldn't believe that he would do this to me knowing that I grew up being abused plus the fact that he was always my protector. I just wasn't comfortable with what had happened. Slowly but surely we began to speak again and I finally agreed to meet with him. We went to dinner and he apologized and we began to spend more and more time together because I loved him and wanted him to be a part of our child's life. I still wouldn't allow him to move back in but I did begin spending the nights with him where he was staying. I was spending more and more time with him because I was still very ill with my pregnancy. My doctor finally told me I had to stop working because I was in so much pain, and he wanted me to rest as much as possible. I was getting shooting pains in my lower back that would affect my legs and I couldn't move or walk. He really wanted to help me so I eventually agreed to stay with him during the last two months of my pregnancy. I had a Healthy Start nurse that would come to visit me on a regular basis and she would always ask me about my daughter but I never wanted to talk to her about her. She kept asking if I had been back to the grave site and I told her no. She kept trying to get me to go and I wouldn't, I couldn't understand then why she wanted me to go so bad. She kept telling me I needed to go, I needed to grieve my daughter because I hadn't done so and I told her I wasn't ready to go back to the grave. She would ask me week after week so finally I gave in and told her I would go. So, the next week she took me and needless to say when I got home I just stayed in the bed the rest of the day crying and in a lot of pain. Later on the evening when everyone was sleep I had to go to the bathroom and while I was going to the bathroom my water broke and I went in labor. The surprise was I wasn't due until March 28, 1996 and it was March 7, 1996. I go to the hospital and have a healthy baby boy. I was very happy he was born but I was so hurt and scared I didn't know what to do. They asked if I wanted him to come home on a monitor but I decided against it because the monitor went off so much when we were in the hospital I knew it would drive me crazy. The monitor was to watch the breathing patterns of the baby and an alarm would sound when they stopped breathing but the monitor is super sensitive and was always going off and just made me more nervous. Now It's time to go home and I'm back at my apartment. At this point my life as I once knew it has changed. I no longer sleep, every little noise and sound I'm up checking on my baby, if he's sleep to long I'm checking on him, if he's gurgling his milk I'm checking on him. I would literally would go in his room put my hand or head on his chest to make sure he was breathing. My son is now like a month old and he's breathing real funny I don't know what going on so I instantly take him to the emergency room they give him a breathing treatment, then a second, then the doctors start examining him well the end result is he has asthma, chronic asthma which begins a cycle of endless trips to the doctors and emergency room. We were at the emergency room so much all the doctors and nurses knew us by name. But the visits weren't limited to asthma, he had major ear infections all the time, croup, mono, you name it my son seem to have caught it. I can't even tell you how many times I was at the hospital over the first three years of his life. I was so focused on my son and his well being that I couldn't focus on me and I still didn't grieve the loss of my daughter. All I could think about was my son and him living. God knew I couldn't handle, it know he had me endure all this with my son because had I grieved at that time I really would have not been able to be the mom to my child I needed to be. I was to focused on him to focus on me. I was attending my parent meetings at CFE, working, taking care of my son and I even attempted going back to school. This is where I began to keep myself so busy that I didn't feel the pain and hurt of not having my daughter. Although I had all of this going when my son was about two I was still feeling this tugging at my heart, this emptiness, this pain that I just couldn't ignore. I was missing my daughter and I wanted another daughter. I was no longer with my son's father and I was in a newer relationship and I shared my feelings with him and I told him I want a baby. I was just in a place where I wanted the pain to stop and I thought by having another baby girl it would help but I wasn't listening to the signs and signals God was giving me. I wasn't looking at the fact that I needed to grieve, heal and grow I wanted it fixed and fixed now. I thought by having another baby it would do the trick and that's what I did......I took the steps to become pregnant again. I got off depo provera and began trying to have another daughter.......stay tuned for some more of the process......
Many Blessings & Much Love
To continue with my experience with SIDS, now that you know how my daughter passed now let's discuss her funeral. Once leaving the hospital we went home. I was so numb I didn't know weather I was coming or going. All I could do was cry. I didn't want to eat, sleep, talk or anything. Even though my daughter didn't pass away at home I didn't want to be there. I went to my parents home so they could help me with putting her services together. I pretty much was just there, everyone made decisions for me. I helped a little I picked who I wanted to sing, I picked the song, but everything else was pretty much done for me. While I was at my parents we did the program, picked out what she was going to wear, decided that her coffin would be open during the whole service (so I thought). Everyday while at my parents I was talking to my significant other but he wouldn't come to the house due to everything that was going on and he didn't want me there because he knew it wasn't healthy for me. I knew in the back of my mind I didn't need to be there but I didn't know where else to go so I stayed. As the day of her funeral approached I tried to prepare myself to say a final earthly goodbye to my baby who in my wildest dreams didn't ever think would be gone before me and definitely not that way. It's hard to speak on the days leading up to the funeral because I was in such a fog I just went through the motions and did what people requested of me. Now we are at the day of her funeral and I was just in the room looking at my child in the casket, she was so beautiful looking like a baby doll, looking so peaceful as if she was just taking a nap. I don't remember much of the service but there are two things that I remember without a doubt. The first being my parents went behind my back and told the funeral home to close her casket during the service and when that occurred I just screamed and shouted no, no, no its supposed to be open the whole time. Why would you do that to me!.... And the second being when we were at the grave site and they lowered my baby into the ground, I felt like I couldn't breath, I couldn't stand on my own at that moment I may have even said I want to die.....but God.....I can't express any more about that day or the following days. The next day I remember was August 28th when I went home from my parents because I had to. At the time my daughter passed I was attending Point Park College and my next semester was due to begin. At the time I thought going back to school would be a good thing, it would keep me occupied so I wouldn't be able to fall into a depression. I remember when my parents dropped me off at my apartment as I was walking to the door I came in contact with this lady that was in the neighborhood doing visits with parents for the organization she is with. She asked me if she could talk to me for a minute and I told her yes, I honestly can't tell you what she said all I know is that she invited me to the center. I don't know how long it took me to go but I went and I must say that it was a saving grace. To this day I am affiliated with the organization and Ms. Bev has been everything I needed. She has been a grandmother to my children, she has been a supporter of our endeavours, she came to the hospital when any of my children where in there, she has come to graduations, she has made sure we had holidays, birthdays whatever. She has provided a platform for me over the years to give back to parents by sharing my story and being a support to them. I could go on and on about the support I received from Center For Family Excellence mostly Beverly Walker. I love her to pieces and now that I'm so far away she is still a support. I get home and it just was cold, dark and lonely. I had my significant other and he was wonderful during the beginning. We had one conversation regarding our pregnancy when I came home and we moved on, to quote him "we are having this baby and we will figure it out." I started school and it was just to overwhelming for me and I ended up taking a medical leave of absence. I was just in to much pain, couldn't focus, and I was very sick carrying my baby. I just worked, worked and worked some more. I didn't do much. I just existed. I did attend SIDS meetings in the beginning but I didn't stay long. I found myself sitting in these meetings thinking none of this is helping, I wasn't getting what I needed because they couldn't explain to me why this happened to me, how my baby did if she wasn't in a crib, she wasn't sleep, she wasn't even home......so I stopped going. I began to focus on my pregnancy and tried to move forward so I thought. I had so many people tell me to move on, I had to think about my baby I was carrying, stop crying, they know what I was going through all of that and more but now that it has been 21 years I can say the only thing that helps is time, patience, faith & love. I still have my bad days but I can say that I'm in a much better place and space today than then! To God be the glory I have made it this far and will continue to be ok, and I will be ok on my bad days too!
Rest with God ReShande-ReShe Dolby! You were with me then, today & Forever
Many Blessing & Much Love
As I write this post I must say that "I love being a MOM" Being a mom is something that is means the world to me. As the saying goes anyone can be a mother but it takes a special person to be a mom. I found out at a very young age that just because you have a baby it doesn't make you a mom. Growing up in the child protective system I had my fair share of moms. I learned a lot along the way some good and some bad but I wouldn't change what I been through because it made me who I am today. When I am asked who I am I respond with I'm a mom first. You become a mother the day you conceive and as you carry that baby you should be preparing yourself to be a mom. God gifted you with the opportunity to care for his child and raise that baby/babies the way he would. Just because you have the capability to carry a child doesn't automatically make you a mom. Being a mom is very special gift and it doesn't come natural to everyone. I must say that growing up the way I did made me want to be the best mom I could be since I didn't have a mom. My mother stopped being a mom to me at the age of five. We never had a relationship, I didn't get the mom and daughter talks about god, friends, life, love, boys, my body or anything else. I learned most of what I know from trial and error and that's not what a mom does. Not having a mom was hard to deal with growing up and it wasn't until I had my first child that I began to realize how much I missed. I always new that a mom's love is supposed to be unconditional but the rest I didn't get until I became one. Once I became a mom that became my number one job. I couldn't believe that God entrusted such a broken person to become a mom. I promised him that even though I may have not had a mom I was going to be the best mom I could possibly be to my child. I made mistakes over the years, I have made not brought my children into the world in traditional standards because of the fact I was broken but I must say that I love each and everyone of them my birth born and my children I have picked up along the way during the course of being a mom to my own children. I feel that every child needs a mom no matter if it is their birth mom or a surrogate. I take being a mom very serious it is not the child's fault they were born and if you believe it or not they are a gift given to us by God and he doesn't make any mistakes. Every child that is conceived has a purpose to fulfill and if that child is loved, nurtured, cared for and lead in the right direction the can fulfill that purpose much sooner. They will still make mistakes but they will quickly get back in line and know that life is bigger than them and they have something to accomplish so they will live in a way to accomplish their purpose in life. We have to many mother's not doing their jobs and the world is suffering for it. So I will work to be a mom to all those that come in contact with me and I see that the need that. The kingdom has work for all of us to do and being a mom is a powerful position to hold. It is a position that I will not ever resign from because as long as we have children in foster care, children in group homes, children in abusive homes, children having children, children hurting themselves and others I will have a job to do. I love each and every one of my babies and I will be here for them until the day I die. I know and understand that being a mom is a job that every woman is not qualified to do. I know that just because you have what is need to be a mom don't make you a mom. What are you doing to be a "MOM"? Are you loving, leading and guiding our babies to be purposeful people of society or are you raising up confused, hurt, lost children that will take years to uncover their true purpose in their life. Let's stop being mother's and start being moms our babies need us! God needs us!
Many Blessing & Much Love
Definition: n. freedom from disturbance; quiet and tranquility, freedom from or the cessation of war or violence. Exclamation. used as a greeting, used as an order to remain silent.
I can truly say that I live my life with such a sense of peace today that is beyond understanding. Being a product of an abusive home, growing up in the child protective system, losing my first born child to SIDS and all that life has thrown my way I can say that I didn't have any peace. I came to a point in my life where all I wanted was all the pain to stop but I didn't know how to get to that point. I always knew that God had his hand on me and I would pray and pray for understanding and guidance. When I got to the point where I was sick and tired of being sick and tired I began to ask God for peace and understanding. I didn't receive that peace overnight and I still continue to ask for it. In the beginning of the journey to a peaceful place I had to deal with a lot of hurts, pain, forgiveness, letting go of things, healing, self-reflection, growing and maturing. As you release and let go you allow are able to receive the good. When you begin receiving good things such as love, understanding and peace you feel better about yourself and the choices and decision you begin to make. When you have peace in your life the way you react and respond when life situations occur become different. Peace allows you to talk and treat others in a loving manner no matter what they say or do. Once you get to a place where you live in a peaceful manner you work extremely hard to stay in that place because it is such a wonderful place that you don't want it disturbed. I know for telling people I'm not going to let you disrupt my peace. I do get upset, my feelings do get hurt and I do get mad but I don't stay there I quickly do all that I can to return to my place of peace. One of my favorite lines to say is "I don't and won't receive that", another words I'm not allowing whatever is going on or being said to inter into my spirit. I have come to far to go backwards and allow that to happen. I like where I am and I am enjoying the life and journey I am on and I refuse to take a detour. I don't have no more time to give in a place of unhappiness and lack. I have always said in want more and better out of my life and now that I'm on the road to that I am not going back! Maintaining my peace keeps me focused on my life's purpose and allows me to be in the moment on life's journey and not just exist. I believe in being an example for those around me no matter how young or old they may be or what they may be going through. I want all to know and understand that having peace in their lives will help them deal with everything that comes there way. Be blessed and begin to get to your place of peace trust me once you start operating in that place you will not go back.
Many Blessing & Much Love
Tisha dolby - Author
To whom much is given much is required, broken for a purpose, God can trust me with my scars....these are just a few quotes I've adopted along the way to walking in my Purpose!
Our Mission at Power ~ Passion ~ Purpose, Inc. is to support underserved underrepresented women who have endured trauma and / or domestic violence. Helping them heal, love & thrive through and after trauma. Equipping, encouraging, & empowering them with the necessary skills, tools & resources to transform their lives and provide economic self-sufficiency