An open letter to my nephew on his first birthday.

2:55 am and an electronic notification alerted me that it was your 1st birthday. You were born a year ago at this very moment apparently. I am so sorry that is something I don’t know, but then I don’t even know you. I know your name. I know youre completely adorbs. I know that if “allowed” I wouldve have been there from your first breath to my last. I also know that I could never participate in a game in which you were leverage. I know that I have wanted to be your Auntie since the moment I found out I was going to be a big sister. I know that I love just the idea of you and want so desperately to love YOU you, exactly as you are. 

 I just wanted you to know. 

Happy 1st Birthday.

All my love,  Auntie Stephanie

Beach Birthday

I had an AMAZING birthday. All I wanted was to sit on the beach and watch the sunset. 

What I got was much more. 

My kids, Bean, his two boys and I met up at the beach. We had a picnic for dinner and then played in the surf and sand for hours, tossing around a frisbee and football. 

And of course there was sunset. 

Just an all around awesome day for which I am SO grateful. 

Happy Birthday

Very young, I looked out at the scary world and decided I was too broken, too different, to risk revealing my true self to it. I felt too weak to survive the pain I knew was the price of love. So I hid.

The cage I built to protect myself from the world’s toxins also stole my oxygen. I didn’t know I needed to be seen and known like I needed air.

I’m finally proud of who I am. I understand now that I’m not a mess but a deeply feeling person in a messy world.
 My healing has been a peeling away of costume after costume until here I am, still and naked and unashamed before God, stripped down to my real identity. I have unbecome. 

Growing up is unbecoming.

And now I stand: Warrior. Undressed for battle. Strong and benevolent. Both yin and yang. Complete, not in need of completing. Sent to fight for everything worth having: truth, beauty, kindness, shamelessness, love. To march into pain and love with eyes and heart wide open, to stand in the wreckage and believe that my power, my love, my light, are stronger than the darkness.

 I know my name now. Love Warrior.

 I came from Love and I am Love and I will return to Love. Love casts out fear. 

A woman who has recovered her true identity as a Love Warrior is the most powerful force on earth.

An Open Letter to my Son on his 14th Birthday

Dearest Son,

You are fourteen today. It’s hard to believe. Even as I told you the story of the day you were born, again, that it has been that long. To me it feels just like yesterday that the doctor was placing you on my chest, over my heart. The memory is so vivid. I think it may be one of the few times in my life that it was as if I was living a dream. Just like that moment between a dream and reality when you’re not sure if it really happened or not. Only this time it had. There you were, in my arms.

Despite all the circumstances that surrounded the demise of your father and I’s marriage, never doubt that you wanted and you have purpose.  You were a dream in my heart when I was still a little girl. When I would be asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, the answer was always the same, a Mom. Being your Mom has been something more spectacular that anything I ever imagined. You are more than a dream come true, you are the love of my life. You were the boy who was always meant to be mine. The boy who bound up my broken heart. The boy who thinks and understands the things I don’t say.

Many people compliment my parenting for the young man you are becoming, but I know that I can’t take credit for your soul. It is genuine and it is yours.

Even as a little boy, you had such compassion and wisdom beyond your years. You always had reassuring words and a smile. They were simple and everything that needed to be said. I don’t know many kids who would choose to sit in a hospital room or at bedside for hours on end because you already knew that’s what being a friend is when your best friend has cancer. I could never find the words to express my overwhelming pride watching you go up to speak such moving words at his funeral in front of so many people in mourning. Consoling his grieving family. You are the very definition of a friend. I so admire your bravery and your comfort in being yourself. You’re proud of being different. You flaunt it. You own it. Witnessing it just makes everyone else comfortable in themselves too.

You will be starting high school in your 14th year of life. It will be a time of great change and many lessons. Don’t be too hard on yourself when you make a mistake, but keep the lesson. It’s all apart of growing up. You may fall in love for the first time. Commit to memory all the little things that you do for your first love, so that you will recall to do them for your last love, your future wife. This is more important than you can understand now, but just trust me, the little things are BIG things. You’re going to become more curious about sex and that’s ok. It’s normal. You’re going to be told all the reasons why you should wait. Adults forget to explain that want grows in you like hunger though. You will crave it. Much like food, the richest experiences are worth the effort to make sure it’s done right. Like making a gourmet dish. Take your time. Appreciate the art of preparation. Take care in the details that matter. You can’t expect to create a filet out of ground chuck. It will taste so much better if you have put the care and time in. Girls are delicate and their hearts, even the wild ones, are fragile. Handle with care. Lead with honesty. You’ll be fine.

Just please always retain the wonder of being a little boy, as you grow into the man you are meant to be, just as you do now. Keep doing you, son. You are an amazing person. You are a true Jedi. Using the force for good. Never trying, but do or do not. It’s a privilege and my honor to be your mother.

I love you with all of my heart.



To my Ex-Husband on your Birthday

I think you’re 44 today.

I think it has been about 4 years since our last real conversation. In the midst of our marriage, even when I was certain that our demise was becoming increasingly inevitable, I never imagined that there would come a day that the kids and I would no longer be a part of your life.

I wonder what you thought about when you woke up this morning. Did you look back over the years of your life? Did you have any remorse for destroying our family and casting the children by the way side like items you no longer needed. I just can’t imagine having a “happy” birthday without knowing where they are, what they are doing and who they are becoming. I cant imagine wanting to slice a cake without being able to share it with them. How do you do it? How do you celebrate? How does it feel?

When you look on the current state of your life and know that they’ve been less than 10 miles away being raised by another man…
When you know how easy it is for someone else to fill those shoes…
When you know you broke every promise to the only people who would’ve loved you unconditionally…
When you spend the day before your birthday in another Court before another judge facing more consequences for making the same mistakes as you did 20 years ago…
When you know your whole life is a lie…
What makes you go on? What’s the motivation to continue your miserable, undignified existence?

My wish for you is that something about today makes you take a long look at the reflection of your life. I hope that you are disgusted enough by what you see that you decide today to make some changes. Changes that will help you become the man you’ve always wanted to be. I wish that you’d decide to take the pain of your childhood and instead of using it as an excuse for your poor behavior, you find something rise up to take advantage of the experience and use it as your reason to be something

I wish that our children’s heart reject bitterness and remain forgiving. I wish that one day in the future that should they reach out to you, that you are the father you always wanted…the father they always deserved.

I wish for you to find your way to redemption starting today. Not just for them, but for you too.

I think my heart is broken irreparably.

Emotionally I feel this crushing weight on my chest that breaks my heart and makes it hard just to take the next breath

In spite of everything else going on in my life that plagues me emotionally and physically, stuff just keeps coming at me to spin that wheel in my head. That voice.

‘Worthless. Hopeless.’
I try every trick up my sleeve, but it seems every time I turn around it’s there to spit in my face.

‘Nobody cares. You are nothing.
Life can subtract me and it makes no difference in anyone’s equation.’

I had to get this all out of my system so that I can go play pretend happy at my birthday dinner that I don’t even want to go to. *turning finger at dimple, crank smile*

Happy fuckin birthday. I survived another year. Fuck.


I really ended up having a lovely birthday with my family and friends. We all went out for dinner and my best friend and I had a sleep over.

Wine, may not be the answer, but it is the answer today.

Another birthday+Layoff=OK?

Yesterday was my birthday AND I got laid off.  Good one, universe!

It happened right after lunch….1:05 to be precise. Got to hear the schpeel : “This decision makes me sick…haven’t slept in days…the work just isn’t here….it may change….Obama admisistration…paid through end of month….unemployment…I’m so sorry.” (handshake from partner, hug from human resource manager, tears from co-workers) It almost felt sincere until the second I walked outside and saw said partners Bentley parked smack in front of the entrance. Nice move, douchelord.

I left work, drove across the street to a Pub where three of the other girls at my office that had just gotten the axe were. We got a table on the patio out in the sunshine, got some drinks and that was where my ass was parked until the end of the work day or until whenever it was that my husband showed up and picked me up to take me to my birthday dinner with my parents and kids. My Dad, just fresh out of the hospital for about two hours – God Bless himm, insisted that he would go get my Jeep and drive it back to the house. This will be the only moment in the course of my life that my parents actually had the chance to reprimand me for drinking as much as I did, but they didnt. Note it. We came back to the house, had cake, parents left. Wine. Applied for Unemployment. Wine. Deadliest Catch. Wine. Bedtime.

Slept in this morning, which was pretty freakin awesome. Kids are stoked that I’m home. I mean, STOKED. Jedi keeps telling me all the reasons why this is a good thing, “It’s summer, we’ll have more time together, we can go to the library, we can go swimming, yada, yada, yada.” (He actually did say yada, yada, yada) Diva must have asked me a 100x why I wasn’t going to work today and doesn’t quite understand the concept of being laid off,  but she does think the idea of unemployment compensation is “really smart.” I concur.

I think I may have just squeaked out 20 weeks of work there. I shall soon see.

Met with the social worker today regarding Pickle. That’s another topic for a different day. Not today. I’ll need more wine.

Then my friend, Mel, from work who was also laid-off called and asked if the kids and I wanted to meet her and go swimming with her and some friends/family. Mel decided it was a malt beverage day. That’s what my afternoon consisted of…lounging in the pool with a malt beverage. Not bad for a paid day’s work (snort). Mel told me about how after I left the Pub that she had to go play volleyball (beer league) with a team that consists of all employees from the firm and how shocked they all were about what happened. There were 8 of us yesterday and 4 more today. Then she told me she cried the whole way home and she just felt….defeated.

I don’t know. I can admit it wasn’t the best thing that’s ever happened to me but it wasn’t the worst either.

Look, I’d take losing my job over losing a loved one any damn day of the week. That’s a fact. Are things going to be tough financially….ABSOLUTELY. Do I have any idea what’s gonna happen…..ABSOLUTELY NOT. But what I do know is that everytime I’ve lost a job, something else has come along that has had a purpose in my life. I really believe everything happens for a reason. Maybe this is just God’s way of pushing me in a different direction that I would’nt have taken without this happening. I HAVE NO IDEA. But, I did make some phone calls today and open my LSAC (Law School Admission Council) account and despite not really having the money to do it my husband insists that I am to register/pay for my LSAT this Friday when he gets paid and “Take the damn test”. My heart isn’t set on this law school thing. Maybe I am cautiously dreaming, but I’ve decided I’m gonna take the test and put out the applications. If I get accepted, I’m going and if I don’t, I won’t …but I’m not ever gonna know unless I try.

I’m rather tired of having the rug pulled out from under me, but looking back….some of the best things that have happened to me came out of something else falling apart. What’s that saying….Sometimes good things fall apart so BETTER things can come together?

I’m actually o.k. I’m not gonna let it get me down and I’m not gonna cry… today. I’m just gonna roll with it. See where this new road takes me.

So take that universe!