Saturday, February 11, 2017

The End

So the time has come. The time is out and you’ve watched this boy play with a basketball his entire life. The word “Basketball” in this house runs just as fluently as our last name. It has been a constant part of our lives since the second grade and it’s hard to believe it’s time to say goodbye.

I look at these kids and I am so proud. I am proud of all they have accomplished with the sport and how far they’ve taken it. I’m proud of them for sticking with the sport, even when it wasn’t always their time to shine. I’m proud of their sportsmanship and for always committing and living up to the programs high expectations.  I’m proud of the sacrifices they’ve made for all those Friday Nights on the court and for the few who gave up all other sports to focus solely on basketball. It’s been a pleasure to watch them grow from the little boys who once couldn’t even dribble a basketball to young men who now are not only teammates but forever friends.

 I watch with such pride every game as they step out on the court wearing those school colors. It’s more than just a game, it’s a feeling, a connection and a commitment to each other and their school that is beyond the sound of  squeaky sneakers on the shiny gym floor.



I don’t even know if I can capture the feeling of realizing last night was the last time he’d enter that gym and be known to all who came. The last time I’d hear his name as they announce the starting lineup.  The last time I’d pick up a program and see his name in it. The last time I’ll open the paper on a Saturday morning and see his name in the headlines of the sports section. As I write I can feel that lump forming in my throat and it’s hitting me that this is it.  As a parent you also give so much and sacrifice so many things for their love of the game, for them to do what they love and to be successful in their sport. I will never regret the time or money spent as he pursued and succeeded in the sport he loves the most. I’ve watched him grow not only physically but as person through this sport. Basketball along with all his teams, teammates and Coaches over the years have taught him certain life skills that you just can’t learn from a book or in a classroom and for that I will always be grateful.


Although I am sad to see it end I am not saying I don’t want it to end. I want to see what this kid does outside of those  high-school walls because I know he’s going to do amazing things.  I want to see what the future holds for him even without basketball. I’m not nervous about the future. I know he’ll be prepared.  I guess I was the one who wasn't quite prepared for the final “curtain call” just yet. 

Friday, December 9, 2016

Monday, August 29, 2016

The Year of "Lasts"

As we come upon the final weekend of summer I find myself longing for just a little bit more, for summer to extend itself to me. I’m not ready. I don’t know if I will ever be ready. I have to be brave but the thoughts in my head are flying and twirling and my heart no longer beats to these thoughts it pounds. My eyes glare at him with pride and tears often freely flow from them because I need more time and there just isn’t any left.

Next week we will start the year of “lasts” as my oldest son starts his Senior year of High School.  In nine days I will take his last 1st day of school picture, in a couple months he will start his last high school basketball season and eventually I will go to his last basketball game, his last Band Concert, the last sports banquet, be witness to his last Prom and in eight months I will take graduation pictures.  I am aware that all these “lasts” lead to great new adventures, opportunities and a future for him that is endless but it doesn’t take away the lump in my throat as I fight back tears writing this because I know every day of this school year is another day closer to him leaving me. 

As I scroll through social media I notice many  posting about their children starting Kindergarten and their comments about it. They can't believe it and they are not ready. I think it’s us; the parents who are not ready because our children are ready. I also realized that although we may not feel ready we; the parents are the ones who make sure they are ready for whatever milestone they are coming upon. You see from the day they are born we are guiding and leading them to and through each milestone preparing them for success yet we never prepare ourselves to cope with all the changes along the way.

I often times feel alone when I am with my friends who all have young children and even in some of my Mom groups. I listen to everyone, encourage and support. I validate their feelings because I understand what it’s like to leave your baby at daycare for the first time, the emotions of their first day of Kindergarten, and the worries of middle school and high school. I know the feelings of your tween finally becoming an actual teenager and I know the fears that those teen years bring.  I don't think their emotions of all those things are any less than mine. Their feelings are valid and real because I know and I vividly remember; I felt just like them.  But I won’t pretend that at times I just want to scream. I want to scream because they don’t realize that they are just starting or maybe stumbling through the middle and I’m over here waving my white flag feeling like everything is ending.  It’s a feeling I don't know how to process yet and sometimes I just want to yell  “My son is preparing to leave me, he's leaving home, he's leaving us and I don’t know what to do”. I want to tell them that they will be okay, that now looking back all those things are simpler and this moment, this year of all the "lasts" that is fast approaching has to be hardest part for me as a Mother. I want to tell them how fast it goes. I want them to believe me because it's so true and it's not just something people say.  I want someone to tell me how to prepare myself for my life to walk out the door because in about 359 days he's going to and I don't want him to.

I know we will journey through this year of "lasts" as millions of parents before us have. I will beg repeatedly that the time go slow. I will enjoy all of the things that this year will bring to us and I will watch my son continue to grow, experience, learn and enjoy his last year of high school. I will beam with pride in his light and I will cry. I will cry a lot however I will try my best to remind myself that for every "last" we go through brings him closer to something brand new and even more amazing. 

Friday, August 5, 2016

Lucky Seven






This is about a boy. A little boy who decided on his own to come barreling into the world and surprise us. A little boy who continues to thrash through this life at full throttle, deciding things on his own and surprising us all. A little boy that unknowingly saved my life as I struggled through some of my toughest days of my life.  This is about my baby boy and the only boy to ever call me “Momma” who somehow is turning 7 years old.

He is contagious in every way. His laughter and his love are genuine and pure. He’s outgoing and friendly. He’s rambunctious and crazy yet calm and snuggly. He’s smart and wise beyond his years yet he can melt my heart with that little voice. He’s respectful and defiant.  He listens and rebels. He’s sensitive and sometimes shy yet a leader and bossy. His personality is like no other. He’s unique and quirky. He can’t sit still and is extremely active. He is sassy and fresh yet hilarious and good.  He loves attention and craves affection. His heart is big and full of goodness, innocence, love and kindness. He is everything a 7 year old boy should be and he completes us. 


It’s hard to remember what our life was like before his arrival. He has shaped the three of us into totally different people than we were seven years ago. I’ve gained such strength, patience and a greater perspective on life. He’s kept my Husband lively, active and young. He made someone a Brother and a Famous Super Hero in his own right. He’s kept that same Superhero grounded, young, playful and happy. We sometimes wish for a quieter, less busy person in our face 24/7 because the little one we have never stops talking or moving yet when he’s not there the house just feels empty. We then find ourselves counting down the minutes for his return. He’s the missing puzzle piece we didn’t even know we were missing. He makes us “The Martin’s”, our caboose on this crazy train we ride. 

As he turns 7 I just want him to always know how much we ALL love him, all three of us; all in our own way and so so much. Our life is busy and fulfilled evenly with family activities however this next year will be filled with many many Big Brother moments as his brother starts his Senior Year of High school. I just want him to know and feel how much we need him, how much we want him and how very much we love and adore him.

 We may only celebrate this little boys birthday for one day but I hope he knows his Momma celebrates him every day for all that he has given and continues to give us. #LuckySeven

Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Battle- My Story



I have put a lot of thought into myself lately. I have thought about my page, The Shrinking Sparkly Girl and my #Roadto40 mission. I have thought about my journey, the ups, the downs and the constant battle to live up to the picture in my head. The choices I make or don’t make are mine, I own them and so the battle continues. 

The battle of weight and what it means for me? Why is it a battle? Why is it something that I’ve struggled with my entire life? Why is it so hard? Why can’t I just fix it? Why do I need to think about it every single day of my life? It’s exhausting. It’s too much.

  The idea in my head was that I was always just too BIG. It was in my own head though. My weight or size was never an issue or negatively talked about at school or with my peers. The ideas in my head probably stem from home. It stems from growing up listening to my Dad always telling my Mom she was fat (she wasn't) and as I matured jokingly making fun of me or telling me my ass was too big as I walked by him. It stems from my Mom letting me do cabbage soup and beet diets with her when I was a young teenager. It stems from laughing growing up as your Grandfather sang “I don’t want her you can have her she’s too fat for me”. It stems from my Mom asking me to join Diet Workshop when I was only 18 years old. The ideas in my head, they weren’t mine they were put there when I was a young vulnerable girl.  


I’ve gone back and looked through pictures of myself. I look at myself as a child. I was a pretty little girl.
I was tall, thick and bigger than most girls my age but I did not have an ounce of fat on me. In high school I was still taller than most girls and even some boys, definitely not petite as most of the girls and maybe a little heavier than I should have been but definitely not fat. I was not fat but I thought I was.
High School



I lost weight on that plan when I was 18years old. I lost too much weight and over the next few years I lost a lot of other things too. I became obsessed with the thought of food and what food would do to my body. I wanted to eat but became so afraid of gaining weight. So I ate and then I purged almost all of my meals and abused laxatives for almost a year.  The breaking point was when I was 21years old and I passed out at my office Christmas Party in the bathroom as I was purging all the appetizers I had just consumed. I left that party by ambulance.  My secret was out. 

The next 2 years were recovery mode, mentally and physically. I ruined my digestive system. I had 4 colonoscopies, 2 endoscopies, proctitis, gastritis, hiatal hernia, esophagitis, colitis and reflux all before the age of 25. I had steroid suppositories, special drinks and at one point had to take 4 pills 4 times a day just to control my over active bowels. My body healed for the most part but did leave me with lifelong digestive issues that I still take medication for. My mind continued to struggle and then I got pregnant. I remember being so happy that I could just eat. It sounds so simple, right? I was happy that it didn’t matter to me if I gained weight for the first time in my life it just didn’t matter. It wasn’t until after he was born that I had my first real set back. I quickly made a doctor’s appointment.  I remember my doctor sitting next to me in the exam room as I cried and stared down at my infant son in his carrier telling my doctor how much I was struggling with food, that I was scared and I couldn’t do “this” all again. I remember telling him “this baby needs me.” He helped me so much. I went to see him every week for quite awhile and sadly I can’t even remember his name. It was because of those appointments, a year of Prozac and my baby boy that I can proudly say 1999 was the last time I ever abused laxatives or purged.

My weight has been up and down most of my life since then. It consumes me sometimes, the thought process, the worry of gaining more, the stress of every diet, every bite of something not on the so call “list”, the time and space in my head that it takes up, the disappointment of failed attempts and the joy of successes even if small. I don’t know why it’s so hard. I don’t know why I make it so hard. I just don’t know. I’ve tried to figure out why I struggle so much when other people make it seem so easy. Honestly, I just don’t know. What I do know is as I approach 40 years old enough is enough. I’ve contemplated everything over the last few weeks trying to decide “what to do”.  I’ve decided I just can’t do this anymore. What does “what to do” even mean? To me it means another year, another diet to try, going back to my health coach, getting another new app to log food, buying another book or researching bariatric surgery. I am done with all that. I have to be. 

I won’t forget the small successes of this year. I lost 25lbs. I got back to my smallest jeans in the closet. I drink a lot of water. I don’t put sugar in my coffee. I go to bed earlier. I drink a lot less wine. I buy and cook healthier and lighter foods most of the time. I keep a scale in the kitchen to just be aware and not get to far away. 

I have a long way to go. I want to get to where ever there is for me and I will. I don’t need to be who I was 20years ago. I need to be me the almost 40year old version. This version the one I love the most regardless of the number on the scale. 

I’ve come to terms with my weight, my journey, my goals, my love of wine and tacos. I am okay with the slow progress because progress is progress no matter what. I’m living, loving and continuing on with this lifestyle forever. If it takes me another year to lose another 25lbs I’m okay with that. I don’t have to live up to anyone else but myself. 

I'm done.

Friday, November 6, 2015

The Day You Left Me





The day is here. The day that was once so ordinary. The day that we played football in the yard with the kids, they were so little then.The day that was exceptionally warm for November. The day that the sun shined bright through the windows and the smell of lasagna baking filled our home. The day that seemed like every other Sunday until it wasn’t.
It’s the day you left us. It’s the day you left ME. It’s the day that left me without a father. 

It’s the day so many of us lost you but this; this is about me. You left ME. You left me fatherless, motherless, left my kids and they were still so young. They miss you. I miss you. You left me just like that and that’s not how it was suppose to go. I’m still mad.

I have spent 1,461 days without you; each day different and each day bringing me to this day; today. It’s the day 4 years later that brings me down, brings me back to that awful day and floods me full of memories about what you meant to me. 

You were so simple. You were fun and goofy. You made fun of me yet would do anything to help or protect me.  You were sometimes such a controlling jerk yet you still tickled my knees if I was riding in the car with you even as an adult with two kids of my own. A man of few words yet a man who I always knew loved me so so much. I always thought you would be there for me until you weren’t.

A lot of things are different now but so much is still the same. You would be so proud of me, of the kids and how we go on. I can think of you and smile most days instead of drowning silently or alone in my tears. I see you in so many things like the lake, clouds, sunsets and stars. I feel you with us, looking over us even though I can’t physically see you. I believe in the signs and how you visit us in our dreams. 

I am a different person and although I wish everyday you were still here the person I turned into because you aren’t is my saving grace.