Posts Tagged ‘the young mommy life’

[Learning To Let Go] Removing Yourself from Unhealthy Relationships

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Even though I’d rather forget, I still remember my first unhealthy and toxic relationship. I fell in love at summer camp. I was 15. In between long days of activities with campers he and I would exchange glances and smiles at the lake or during dinner. It wasn’t long before he asked me out.

The first time he yelled at me I freaked out.

The first time he pushed me I wondered what I did wrong.

I spent the majority of that summer catering to someone who didn’t view me as special. He held no place for me in his heart, but told me he loved me. I allowed myself to be manipulated, I allowed him to treat me like just someone. It’s no surprise we never talked again after that summer.

That relationship started a pattern of engaging in unhealthy relationships. I blamed it on not having a father around; I needed a man around to love me, because I didn’t feel it at home. I felt incredibly stuck in my small town. I had no supervision and I craved something more. Something tangible, something that could fill my heart up. I didn’t want to feel empty anymore. You’d think after that summer of love I would have learned my lesson, I would have thought more of myself than to get involved with men who just tossed me aside. I only knew my daughter’s father a couple of months before I became pregnant.

I’m a lover—as much as it hurts, I give love a chance over and over. It’s a risk, but I can’t help it. The rush, the excitement, the acceptance – I crave it. I need it. I’ve been searching for something, and in the process I’ve gotten my heart stepped on and tossed aside. Sometimes I wonder if it still beats.

Most recently I entertained someone who I wasn’t planning on inviting into my heart. But his smile…it got me. What started out as innocent flirting quickly developed into something more, something passionate, and I didn’t want to stop the roller coaster ride. I was used to the uncertainness and feeling unfulfilled, so his unwillingness to take our situation to the next level only heightened my desire for him.

When he told me he loved me I was in shock – his actions didn’t support it, but I was ecstatic hoping finally we could move forward together. I became slightly obsessed with our unhealthy relationship – we went through some hard times and he wasn’t there to support me. It didn’t seem like he cared that I was hurting. He said he did, but where was he when things got rough? This destructive pattern continued, my friends saw how miserable I was, told me I deserved better. But I didn’t think so. I felt like I got exactly what I deserved.

Read the rest of  [Learning To Let Go] Removing Yourself from Unhealthy Relationships over on The Young Mommy Life.



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Help – This Single Mom Doesn’t Budget!

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I have a confession—I don’t have a budget.

Sure, I’ve created them a few times, but actually sticking to them, nope. Once I entered the professional world in my early twenties, I wasn’t making great money (not that I am now) but I was sure I didn’t need a budget on my limited income. As time has gone by and my expenses have grown and gotten more complicated I find myself forever playing catch up on my bills and making somewhat impulsive and unnecessary purchases. I’ve got this chick, Sallie Mae, on my back every month wanting me to cough up ridiculous amounts of money I don’t have to pay for my fancy education. I don’t check my bank statement nearly as much as I should (though I did after the Target scandal) and it’s often because of fear.

I don’t want to face things that will cause me further stress. I don’t want to face not having enough in my savings account to support my daughter and me in the event I wasn’t able to work. Not having a budget and not being smarter about my spending in saving is something I can’t ignore any longer, and is a big priority for me this year.

Clearly I’m doing something right if I’ve managed to hold down my own apartment since I was 21. My bills get paid, sometimes late, but they get paid…eventually. Within the past couple of years I’ve made some smart investment choices with securing rental and life insurance. I understand when I make good decisions and I know when I make not so good decisions…like avoiding my frenemy Sallie when she calls…and emails….and calls. I’m in denial – I work in nonprofit and yes, the rumors about pay in the nonprofit field are correct – even with years of professional experience and a four year degree, I’m underpaid. But that’s no reason to not be smarter about my money.

To read the rest of “Help – This Single Mom Doesn’t Budget!” and to share your tips and advice head over to The Young Mommy Life.



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How Do I Support My Daughter’s Bilingual Education?

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Even though I check off African American and Hispanic when I complete paperwork, I’ve never fully felt Spanish…even if I’m half Colombian.

My father and his family emigrated from Colombia and settled here in the great U-S-of-A. They all speak Spanish fluently and for them English is their second language. I grew up without my dad being in the picture and unfortunately that meant I didn’t learn at all about my Colombian heritage nor did I learn to speak Spanish. I remember being so irritated in high school when Spanish didn’t come naturally, I was embarrassed. Embarrassed that I embraced being half Colombian, but couldn’t pass my final Spanish exam. And now, my full name is quite Latin, as is my daughters, and once I open my mouth and tell people I’m Colombian, the immediately ask: Do you speak Spanish? And I always feel like a fraud.

I felt I missed out growing up without learning another language and when I was choosing schools for my daughter one thing was for sure – learning Spanish would be part of the curriculum, and she’d grow up bilingual.

My daughter has been enrolled in a dual-language immersion school since she was in Junior Kindergarten and is now in the 2nd grade. All of the teachers are fully bilingual, with many of them from Spanish speaking countries. Now that she’s in 2nd grade she has a full week of Spanish, where all students and staff speak in Spanish, and then a full week of English. The school strives to make the classrooms as diverse as possible and try their best to mix classrooms with half Spanish speaking students and half who speak English as a first language at home. Even though it’s a public school it’s quite competitive, and how Spanish is integrated within the curriculum is unlike any school around.

Read the rest of “How Do I Support My Daughter’s Bilingual Education?” and over on The Young Mommy Life.



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