Rational Relationship Advice

Relationships seem complicated these days. We have all these romance novels and flicks showing us how beautiful and wonderful true love is.

And it’s all bullshanks.

Did you lock eyes with your mother and just know this was the person you would love for the rest of your life, and then never fought? HELL NO.

So why would this happen with a guy or gal who isn’t someone from your immediate family? It doesn’t. Relationships take work. You had to get to know your family to love them. And sometimes…you don’t even like them. Some people don’t like their families at all. And these are people you should love unconditionally because fam!

But love is something that comes with trust and respect. It isn’t something you just know. It’s not something that magically occurs and stays. It’s something that HAPPENS. There’s a difference. See…asking for someone’s respect leads to not trusting them. And asking for someone’s trust makes it hard to respect them. Because at any moment…at any change, those things can slip away. But when trust and respect happen naturally…. everything can fall into place. Trust and respect come because you LOVE someone. Unconditionally. Boy or girl, family or friend. True love forgives. True love is patient. And true love is natural. It happens. It isn’t earned or predicted.

You can’t EXPECT to be loved by someone, nor can you make someone love you. Hell, you don’t have to do those things either. Love comes because it just does. When you see a gadget at the mall and think of that friend who would love that, and you buy that thing for them…and it’s not their birthday or Christmas. It’s heartwarming (or gross).

If I haven’t gotten through to you what love is yet, then maybe I’m not the right person to explain it. But if you are in some blossoming romance, here are some key tips to starting out building a RATIONAL relationship.

EVERYONE HAS SOMETHING IN COMMON

SNAP OUT OF IT!

No no no nono o no noo !!!

Fated should be a word saved for the past. No one is fated until it is done. You may feel stuck and fated…but no! That’s your dumb conspiracy brain talking.

People have things in common. It is how content is alive. It’s how we connect. There is only so much to connect with, and guess what….you’re going to be looking for the things you like. So, yeah. Of course you noticed those things because you would notice. And that makes you want to talk about those things and connect…just like the other people in the room who like those things, or have had those things, or whatever it is you’re noticing.

Connecting is good. Having things in common is good. But that doesn’t mean a relationship needs to be romantic. Connecting is something that starts friendship. Which is great! Get in there and be friends!

PERFECT EVERYTHING

Ok, we all have our type…but that doesn’t mean that since he looks like your math class doodle from the 9th grade that you’re meant to be. Maybe you’re just psychic and telling yourself to stay away. Hehe.

No one is perfect. They can be perfectly imperfect. Meaning…what issues are you willing to put up with? Don’t kid yourself on this. You need to know this before things go further. It’s doable. Trust me. And that person will be beautiful to you no matter what they look like.

PLAYING GAMES

This one PEEVES me.

If you play games…. STOP. Just stop. If someone likes you then they will be with you. There is no point in playing games. It’s narcissistic, manipulative, crazy, and unnecessary. If you have to play games to keep whoever around…then get lost and leave them alone. They don’t deserve that just as much as you don’t. They are entitled to love who they want, and so are you. This is so evil.

Just love and live. Please.

HONESTY

WHOA! Yeah, admit your feelings. Who cares? You and the person who loves you. Your ego shouldn’t be affected by minor rejection. If you’re friends, it’ll be funny looking back. If you guys aren’t friends, then good riddens. And, hey, maybe they’re interested too. There is nothing wrong with admitting to something. From a crush to something from a previous relationship that scarred you. You are always entitled to feel what you want, but you’re not necessarily entitled to act how you want. If that was the case, we would all be comatose idiots. The point of a relationship is to grow with one another. Lacking in honesty and communication is not going to allow someone to understand you.

Think of it like a team sport. If you’re playing soccer, or football, you can’t do great if your team doesn’t communicate with you how they’re going to play. You can’t win that way. You usually have some indication that says “Hey! Pass the ball to me!” and then you have to trust this person to make a goal or not lose the ball. An if they do, you don’t kick them off your team, you just tell them to practice harder next time.

FIGHTING

A healthy relationship has fighting. Did you know? Just because you disagree about a minor thing and bicker about it all day, isn’t the end of the world. This is normal. This is part of communicating. Fighting about a small thing can keep bigger issues from arising. If the issue keeps happening, well, it’s time to move on. Compromising is a huge deal in any relationship. And don’t be a pushover or a yes-man. It’s more fun to have differences. It keeps you growing. Plus, you shouldn’t be afraid to be who you are around the person you want to potentially spend forever with.

Of course, if you’re fighting ALL the time. And things are getting bad physically, then leave. Fights should be resolved quickly and end with smiles. There should never be an aftermath to a fight painted on anyone’s skin, walls, or mind. Abuse is bad.

*****

Yes, I did all these annoying things once in my life. I watched friends do all these things. Leave fairytales for the books. It has only been recent that people get married according to feelings and not arrangements. But a relationship is an arrangement. Not a feeling. Gooey tummies are a feeling. And feelings do not last forever. They are temporary, and that is why a relationship shouldn’t be based off a feeling. Love is a feeling and an action.  You may not always feel the LOVE but you can always act in it from the kindness of your heart.

There is so much more I could say but I’m so unsure of how to put it all into words. Please forgive me if I wasn’t clear or missed some points.

photo from Learn Religions

University vs Community College

I’ve been a student at both a university and a community college. Even though I first trod the university grounds at age 18, I decided to quit school and pursue bigger dreams, like moving away and experiencing life after high school without tangling myself in debt as soon as I became legally an adult. Something about starting adulthood with money problems did not sound very appealing to me.

Five years later, at the sweet age of 23, I decided it was time, for reasons I have stated in Single College Mom (go read that if you wish to understand). Because 18 year old me was brilliant and didn’t expect to ever go back to college, I had left university without dropping and came out with a beautiful 0.71 GPA. The university put an academic hold on my account and banded me from the school until my GPA was raised.

In a world wind of anxiety, I googled how to raise a GPA when a school no longer accepted you. I quickly came up with the only way of not moving out of state. Community college.

I was quick to sign myself up for the school and track all the classes I needed, how I could graduate fast, and transfer to university and begin Atmospheric Science. I began quick and hard. And for a year and a half, I was schooled in community college. I transfered to the university and have been there for two semester.

Granted, I only have experience with my towns community college and university, but this is what I have learned about the two.

Family Friendliness-

University: Universities do typically have a daycare center, far off campus, but unless your studies are online, university is not idle for parents. The amount of homework and self studying is tedious and will require a lot of your focus and may take away from family time.

pros: Daycare center.

Cons: A lot of time is spent doing school work.

Community College: Community college seems to be built for parents. The have a daycare in the same building as you. Online and in class studies require minimal focus outside of class times, so having a balance for your schooling and family time is easily doable.

pros: daycare center. Located within five minutes of you. Less time on school work.

cons: Is there one?

Teachers-

University: There are so many people in university classes. It’s easy to be invisible in such large groups. And so it is also possible to never gain a relationship with your teacher unless you actively seek them out. To your teacher, you might just be another number or just a kid.

pros: Shy person’s heaven. Easy to watch Netflix.

cons: Antisocial nightmare.

Community College: With smaller classes, it’s easy to get to know your classmates and teachers. You are almost forced to gain a relationship with your peers and teachers. This makes getting to know your teachers easier. In return, teachers get to know you and will associate you as a real adult.

pros: Easy for people to ask questions.

cons: Shy person’s nightmare. Not Netflix friendly.

Clubs-

University: There are so many clubs to choose from. These clubs provide you with information and experience opportunities for your future career. You get to meet everyone in your major, and have a chance to hang out and get to know everyone you’ll be spending the rest of your four years with. There are also clubs that you can join that are not affiliated with your major where you can make other friends who share similar hobbies.

pros: Friend making. Experience building. Easy way to find information for future career.

Cons: Must dedicate time from studies and family.

Community College: Clubs are limited, though they do exist. It is harder to get information on your future career path in these clubs as everyone is most likely in a different major. It’s mostly to make friends!

pros: Friend making.

cons: No career information.

Work-

University: There is so much to do and experience. There are on campus jobs to keep you in the action. Although, if you do work, it’s not for long, and mostly evening shifts.

pros: On campus opportunities.

cons: Can’t work a lot. Evening shifts. Not likely to be excusable.

Community College: Community colleges are perfect for the working person. There are many night classes for those work in the day, along with plenty of online classes you can take. Often times, teachers will also work with you and your work schedule.

pros: Excusable. Flexible.

Cons: Not as many on campus opportunities.

Homework-

University: There is so much homework! You will definitely need time to do it all. From my experience, I swear you learn most of your lessons from your homework than from your actual teachers. In fact, missing class won’t even affect you as much as not doing your homework.

pros: You can miss class in peace.

cons: A lot of out of class studying time.

Community College: What you learn is class is what you do for homework. You will learn more in the class than on your homework. Homework is like a review of the lesson to make sure you understand what is going on and ask questions about what you don’t understand.

pros: Less out of class studying time.

cons: Don’t miss class.

Cost-

Univesity: pros: Lots of options. Cons: EXPENSIVE!

Community College: pro: Saves money. Cons: Less activities and class options.

I conclude saying this: If you are an adult with a family of your own, a job, or only want to take care of your business, community college is the way to go. If you’re young, don’t have a job or family of your own, or want to have a big social life, university is the way to go.

Kid Shows Parents Can Get TOO Invested In

Being a mom means being a kid show mediator. All moms have a different opinion on what their child should watch, but in my opinion, what gets watch highly depends on your child. Children are into different things, just like us adults. Some things I find Isla watching, I will immediately turn it off. Others, I get heavily invested in.

Here are my top 5 picks for kid shows parents can enjoy too!

5. Mia and Me

Mia and Me is about a 12 girl named Mia who gets sent to a prestigious boarding school after her parents die. Her aunt gives her a game her dad made before he died called “The Legend of Centopia” . This book ends up allowing Mia to travel between the real world and a cartoon world where unicorns and fairies exist.

This show has less to be invested in then the next ones on my list, but it is still interesting nonetheless. It provides enough entertainment for my daughter to sit through an episode. It has enough serious content to provide a good idea on how to handle situations and make mature decisions when you’re on your own.

4. Troll Hunters

Troll Hunters is about a high schooler named Jim who gets called to be the next troll hunter. The thing is….He’s the first HUMAN troll hunter.

I love this show! The characters are so likable, and not in an annoying way. What’s best is that it teaches children to trust their parents, no matter what, as Jim and his friends have to eventually involve their parents. It also teaches parents that we have to trust our kids to protect themselves, and that sometimes, we can’t help.

Photo source from Syfy!

3. Barbie: Life in the Dream House

LITDH does not really follow a story line. This show is so unique. Barbie and her friends living in the dream house having wacky adventures as plastic dolls in a fake world. They break the fourth wall, and kind of act like their on a documentary at times. If you loved playing with dolls or action figures as a kid, you will adore this show! It is comedic for everyone! Even my dad loves this show.

Found this photo on Medium, explaining why it’s their guilty pleasure!

2. Miraculous: The tales of Ladybug and Cat Noir

Miraculous is about a girl named Marinette and a boy she has a crush on named Adrien. They become the super heroes of Paris when they are given miraculouses that transform them into Ladybug and Cat Noir. They have to defeat the villainous Hawkmoth, who can make people evil with his moth creatures called Akumas. Hawkmoth has one goal, and that is to get Ladybug’s and Cat Noir’s miraculouses.

They show is so much fun. There is a weird romantic circle with Adrien and Marinette. Marinette loves Adrien, but Adrien loves Ladybug. The show revolves around their love, but doesn’t forget to remind you why they’re super heroes to begin with. The secrets of Hawkmoth will shock you! I am super invested in this show.

Picture from the Miraculous Ladybug Fandom wiki. It is not mine.

1. Spirit: Riding Free

Spirit is the number one show I would recommend for all parents! Spirit: Riding Free is slightly based off the movie Spirit. I remember watching Spirit in theaters when I was 9 years old! I loved that movie! When I say this show is based off Spirit, please remember it is not Spirit. Personally, I can’t remember Spirit that much, as it has been YEARS since I saw the movie, and Spirit: Riding Free did not disappoint me at all. The show is about a girl named “Lucky” who has moved from the city to Miradero, a small ranch town, not long after her mom died. Lucky feels a deep connection with a horse that has been captured to be broken. She helps the mustang and calls him Spirit.

This show has the best examples of good morals. It teaches kids that communication and honesty is the soul of every kind of relationship. It doesn’t hesitate to show all of Lucky’s weaknesses and accomplishments and how she grows as a person. It is so well written in my opinion! The show is over now, as far as I know, and worth the watch with your kids!


Spirit: Riding Free. © Dreamworks Animation LLC, all rights reserved

My Favorite Spring Things

Spring is around the corner! And I want to talk about four cute Spring things that I love about Spring!

First, we have to get through March. It comes in like a Lion (threatening our precious town with the rising river level) and goes out like a lamb indicating the beginning of spring!

LAMBS


But we your people, the sheep of your pasture,
    will give thanks to you forever;
    from generation to generation we will recount your praise.

Psalm 79:13

Lambs were used as sacrifices back in the days of the Old testament until Jesus sacrificed himself for our sins. The perfect sacrifice. “Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.” (John 1:29)

Lambs are adorable! When I see them I’m reminded of the greatest sacrifice, our shepherd, and innocence and purity.

CLOVERS


“So I turned with all my heart to the Lord my God, and he looked down on my lowliness and had mercy on my youthful ignorance. He guarded me before I knew him, and before I came to wisdom and could distinguish between good and evil. He protected me and consoled me as a father does for his son.” St. Patrick


During one of our last RCIA meetings I picked some blooms of clovers and weaved them into a bracelet like I used to do on the playground in elementary school. The clover’s three leaves are a symbol of the Holy Trinity.

I love seeing the green patches of clovers growing all over the place during this time. They’re bright and seem to glow in the sun, especially during sunset.

DEW


Moses said this about the tribes of Joseph: “May their land be blessed by the LORD with the precious gift of dew from the heavens and water from beneath the earth.”
Deuteronomy 33:13

It refreshing to see dew comeback after winter. Somehow the little drops bring a sort of freshness to the spring mornings. Dew fertilizes the plants and helps them grew. That’s a blessing some of us may take for granted.

EASTER


“According to his great mercy, he has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead.”
1 Peter 1:3

Easter is one of my favorite holidays. I love celebrating Jesus’s rise from the dead and participating in the Paschal Triduum.

Easter also has beautiful pastel colors that we associate with the whole spring season. I love all the Easter eggs and bunnies and chicks. I love Easter egg hunting with Isla and getting her Easter dresses.

There are a ton more things I love about Spring! If you you want to share your favorite things about spring, please comment them below! Post pictures too! ♥

Bullying

I recently read a book for my class about a kid who was being bullied and was unaware of it. What was more frustrating is that his bullies didn’t even realize that they were bullying him.

I was bullied a few times in adolescent life. Unfortunately for my bullies, I’m not as weak as I appear. I like to consider myself not weak at all. I’m patient.

For example: In junior high these two twins found me to be their most endearing target. They would seek me out any chance they had and they would make fun of my clothes, my hair, my walk, my talk, my body, etc. Not only were they in my class, but they rode my bus. I know I was weird in junior high (like everyone else, IMO) but I still don’t know what caused them to attack me. We had known each other for years.

Edit “Update on Comfort Weight 3/1”

“Why did you dye your hair red, Mikayla? To look like us? You wanna be like us? You’re such a loser! Look how fake it looks. It looks so bad.”

“I dyed it to win a costume contest for Harry Potter. I think I look good as a red head and it has nothing to do with y’all.”

This was how I typically responded. That, or simply walked away ignoring their taunts. Until the day one of them hit me on top of my head with a binder. That was too far for me. I got up and began trying to hit the tiny little mutants with my big ole binder. Lucky for their 60lb selves, they were able to get under the seat.

And they had the nerve….to tell on me….and try to get ME kicked off the bus.

What they didn’t know, while I ignored them, told them to stop, or justified myself, the bus driver had been watching for months. And they got kicked off the bus.

The next day I was sent to the principal’s office. She asked me what had been going on and I feebly explained everything. I was terrified that my actions had just caused me to get suspended. But if there was anything I learned from my parents about trouble, is that telling the truth is always the best option. I didn’t hold back. I explained about how the girls had been treating me and then about the incident on the bus, and how my parents told me to hit back.

When I walked out of her office, I saw the twins there, in tears, with their very furious mother. Our principal gave them three days suspension from school. They apologized to me. And the problem was fixed.

The other bulling situations didn’t ever go as far, and were usually resolved quickly. I don’t think they really knew what they were doing. I think they thought it was all in good fun.

But kids do this. We would be best friends, then we would be fighting. Then we would be friends. They were neighbors, and we all basically grew up with each other. I probably bullied people without realizing it as well. In fact, I know I did. *Big Cringe.

By the end of high school we had learned to laugh at anything negative thrown our way. We were old enough to see when things were going too far.

WE WERE OLD ENOUGH TO SEE WHEN THINGS WERE GOING TOO FAR!

I’ve recently seen a group of college kids bullying another college guy who clearly has mental issues. These classmates leave him out of plans and advise new students to stay away from this guy. They attack and laugh at him for no reason other than for sick joy.

I do agree this guy shouldn’t be putting all his personal affairs on social media, but they could just leave it alone. It’s none of their business what happens in his personal life, regardless if it’s on social media.

My point is this:
As adults (18+) we should know when things are going too far. Children learn from their mistakes. As children we have all experienced bullying in some way or another. No one goes through junior high or high school without experiencing having at least one toxic friend or once being a toxic friend. If you haven’t realized that yet, then take a trip to nostalgia land to a time you felt uncomfortable about doing something you didn’t want to do, or told someone how bad an outfit looked on them. We all do it because we all experience it.

Now come back to your present day life. Are you bullying someone? Are you using someone’s pain as a joke line? Are you making their pain worse?

We all unintentionally do it sometimes, thinking what we’re doing is a social norm (which is sad). This is why we have bullying awareness. To be aware of bullying not only helps us spot bullying, it helps people change their ways.

Let’s try and make a difference and be kind to each other to stop this ongoing cycle.

Single College Mom

Before Nathan left me I was a part-time assistant librarian, but mostly a mom. I was content. I only had to leave Isla for about 4 hours a day. I couldn’t imagine what I would do if I had to be away from her any longer.

Right after Isla turned one, I would have to figure that out. When Nathan left me I had no idea what was about to happen with our lives. I did know a few things: Nathan had no intent of making sure I was provided for, I had nowhere to go, and my income would not provide enough for Isla and me.

I wished to pursue a full time position at the library, only to learn I needed a degree…something I was lacking. I decided it was time to go back to college. I knew I needed to re-define myself, even though I wasn’t ready for it, and college is always a good place to start….right?

I’m a little too ambitious for my own good sometimes, so I decided that I needed a career that would pay better and give me a lot more flexibility than the little libraries of Louisiana. I love weather, so I decided on Atmospheric Science, with the idea of getting my masters at OU and working for NOAA. Big dreams with no room for ‘momming’. I didn’t feel like I had choice anymore. I gave myself a strict 4 year timeline, and a few months later, I was beginning my college career at the age of 23 with a one year old while working part-time as an assistant librarian.

The first two semesters I was living on a strange high. I stayed pumped full of energy; I was running 3 days a week, hanging out with friends, doing homework at the library, working any shift offered, and even dedicating some time to a school club. I was too lost and impatient to slow down. Meanwhile, Isla wasn’t really being raised by me anymore. I knew this, and it hurt, but if I slowed down, I cried. If I found myself in a parenting struggle, I cried. I wanted things between Nathan and me to work out again just so I wouldn’t be alone in figuring it all out.

My third semester in college I realized I couldn’t do this anymore. Isla was losing respect for me, plus this semester was going to be the busiest yet. I missed my little girl. I saw her everyday, but I wasn’t her mom anymore. I was more like a sister now, both of us being raised by my grandmother. I needed to be with her again. I wanted her to know my values and respect me again. It was time to make a big decision- drop school or quit work to add more room for being Momma.

After some pros and cons I decided to quit my job. It was the scariest thing I ever gambled, but I managed to figure it all out.

This was when Daniel and I first met. I had gained such a liking to him… but I knew he would never be interested. I had heard that a man doesn’t want to provide for a woman so many times that I assumed I wasn’t an option for anyone anymore. A single mom without a job? Who wants that?

But for some reason, Daniel didn’t care. He was interested and he wanted to help. I thought he was dumb or something, but he’s also the smartest guy I know, so I know somewhere he saw past all the dumb stuff to me.

Ok, enough with the mushy stuff. If you’re a single working college mommy, I’ll give you some advice:

If you must live in debt for awhile, it’s worth not missing out on being Mommy–

STRESS SUCKS — that’s obvious, and money is usually behind it. If you’re like me, the idea of being in debt (or more debt) is an absolute nightmare. Personally, I hate owing money. But I had to learn that sometimes, debt is necessary. And even though I vowed to never have student loan debt, I gave up on that pipe dream to be with Isla and move us into our own place.

I can’t wildly spend, that’s a given, but I still do enough to provide us with everything we need and good living conditions. I can say that I’m way happier paying rent and bills than having none of it without Isla.

Do not over estimate yourself–

I told you how I was trying to be an atmospheric scientist, right? Well, I decided that it was too much for having a family. I was spending hours on homework (I’m bad at math… and this major is mostly math), and after some long talks with Daniel, I reconsidered being a librarian. I did love the job after all. It’s also all online! Which means I get to stay home with Isla!

Being a mommy and having to attend on-campus classes already isn’t easy, but having to spend extra hours on homework because you have to work harder to be good at something (in my case math) is stressful and takes away from raising your kid. Do what you love and what is easiest for you as a mom.

Daycare is your friend–

Daycare isn’t a place I ever wanted to take Isla, but I had to consider it after a while. My family couldn’t be available all the time and I needed to get school work done. A few hours in daycare is perfect for getting school work done and cleaning house…or even catching up on some zZzZz… And your kid gets to learn and be around other kids.

Even stay at home moms need some time to themselves.

Love yourself!–

We all have reasons for thinking we don’t deserve things. We all have moments in our past where we failed ourselves morally. But you have to forgive yourself. It’s easier said than done. And I super suggest reading the The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck: A Counterintuitive Approach to Living a Good Life by Mark Manson. He’s funny and he’s honest. And for a nice Catholic/religious read try A Life of Prayer: Faith and Passion for God Alone by St. Theresa of Avila. I’m not good at giving mindful advice, but I can recommend books!

Hopefully my advice isn’t all trash! ♥

Yes M’am No M’am

Do you tell your kids to say ‘Yes/No m’am/sir’? This is one parenting thing I don’t enforce too much, and here’s why:

As much as I love being respected by my daughter, I find it hard to enforce the “yes m’am, yes sir” rule (Oh and for short, I’m going to stick with “yes m’am”, and for even shorter, YM). My family taught my brother and me to say YM only with strangers, teachers, other adults etc. but not to Mom and Dad. Mom’s reason?

We are your parents, and I didn’t want you and your brother to feel like you couldn’t approach us.

And I agree with her here. I never felt fearful talking to my parents. I never worried too much about saying the wrong thing to them. They were always open and loving. With my family, we have a kind of mutual respect: do as your told- no ifs ands or buts about it. Whyyyyy? Because “I’m your parent! And you need to respect me.” With that I’ve grown to be a firm believer that words mean nothing if they aren’t followed by an equivalent action. I could say YM all day to Mom, but does that mean I respect her? No. Not at all. But they were strict about saying YM to others who were unfamiliar. And I never did stray from that. I need to respect people I don’t know, but I won’t interact with them enough to show them that respect, so the YM is more necessary.

Hmm… Maybe I could hear some thoughts on this subject. I would love to know all the sides to it and why YM is a good thing to enforce.