Better Late than Never. 

Okay, so I know that I haven’t posted in awhile.  I really thought I’d be more dedicated to this whole blogging thing but it turns out that I’m just pulled in about a million different directions.  One of those directions is my journey to finish school.  I finally received my Associates Degree.  I started in 2001. I know. It’s taken me forever. Life, hardships, babies, just kept happening and I kept putting it off.  But finally here it is. A light at the end of the tunnel.  I’m proud of myself for not giving up and for finishing what I started.  Even if it was almost 14  years ago lol. 

Now on to my next adventure!!! My bachelors!!! I’m currently taking summer classes. Have no idea why I thought that was a great idea! Oops! Wish me luck! 😘

Forced Break…

So I know every parent out there would love just a tiny break. Some peace  and quiet. Some R and R.  But on your own terms.  Unfortunately for the Brett house, this mama was forced to take a break in the hospital.

I’ve been battling what I was thinking started out as a sinus infection for a month and a half.  The sinus infection went to my chest, my asthma started flaring up, I had three rounds of antibiotics, steroid shot, breathing treatments and absolutely nothing was working.  

I ended up at the ER and admitted for 2 days to try and get everything under control. Thankfully, I’m home and relaxing now. But it’s absolutely killing me to just “sit” and “relax” while there’s so much to do.  I can’t go back to work until I’m feeling 100% better and my body is just wore slap out. Turns out I had developed pneumonia along with acute and chronic respiratory hypoxia. In other words, my lungs were so not functioning like they needed to be for an otherwise healthy 34 year old woman. But it’s what happens when an otherwise healthy woman is completely stretched to her breaking point and is running on empty. 

It’s the peak of the holiday season. Our last home game is this Friday. We have a neighborhood fall festival, trunk or treat at church, lots of stuff to take care of at work and I’m confined to my sofa. Which makes me cranky and not happy at all. I guess the silver lining is my parents are visiting and have been here to help with our two and four legged minions. Mom has been cleaning, cooking, doing laundry. Dad has been making trips to the grocery store. My sister has helped out with Maverick and my sweet husband has just been by my side the whole time. 

Being forced to take this “break” has made me realize a few things. One being that I cannot take care of my family, my home, my work if I am not taking care of myself.  I need to eat better, manage my asthma better, develop a new exercise routine, or whatever so I can be there for my family. I can’t refill everyone else’s cup if mine is always empty. I am not super woman. I’m just a regular person who tried to handle everything, who ignored how tired her body was, and it all ended up biting me in the ass. No bueno. 

The second thing I realized is I don’t know how to just sit down and relinquish control. Honestly, I’m a control freak! I hate for everything to be going on and me be in the background not being able to control anything lol!

I guess the moral of this post is that we parents, need to remember how important it is for us to take care of ourselves so we can take care of our families and our other obligations. We deserve some time to ourselves. Even if it’s 15 or 20 minutes a day, we NEED to make ourselves as much as a priority as others.

To help drill this into my own brain I decided to illustrate a picture in my journal 😂.

Hope all you had a fantastic Halloween. 

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year y’all from very soggy and rainy Mississippi!!! I don’t know about the rest of you but I always look forward to new beginnings. Fresh starts. New chapters to be written! The last couple years have just been touch and go for our family.  With Nick’s 5th concussion and the birth of our Maverick, it feels like we went through a whirlwind of change and not all of it was for the better.  I think 2016 was hard for a lot of people.  It was definitely hard for our country.  I’m hoping that 2017 brings much needed comfort and peace to everyone. 

Rather than make New Years resolutions that really won’t be kept, how about we all just make one.  One to be kinder. It costs nothing to be kind. I’m not talking about trying to walk eggshells so you don’t offend someone. I’m talking just saying hi to a stranger. Or saying thank you when someone holds the door open for you. Believe it or not that’s not common place anymore.  The reason we see something “kind” being shared on social media, is because it’s simply not taking place as often as it should.  We have become increasingly more self absorbed and indifferent to everything going on around us. I’ve been just as guilty as any of you. But I want to change for the better. I want to change because my neighbors need it. Because my city needs it. Because you and everyone else in the world needs it.

It’s not going to cure anything over night.  It’s not going to fix all of the gigantic problems that we have facing us as a society. But it will bring a little more sunshine. And who doesn’t love that! 

From my humble little family in MS, we wish you the love of friends and family, good health and memories in 2017. God Bless y’all!

❤️Ana


****Picture was found on Pinterest and is not my own****

Falling into the Perfect Season.

Fall has finally reached the Mississippi Gulf Coast and I couldn’t be happier. We’ve literally had what felt like an endless summer.  Picking pumpkins and going on hayrides is just not the same in 90 degree weather let me tell you.  Our church put on a trunk or treat after service and the poor kids were sweating and and coming out of their costumes.  I was getting super cranky of not being able to wear my scarves and my boots.  But as with all good things, Fall decided to show up and now I can finally light up a fire in our fire pit, sip hot chocolate, and snuggle next to my babies or Nick under a cozy blanket.  

When I was younger and had time to worship the sun, I lived for summer. I lived in my bikini from the time the sun was up until I went to sleep.  I’m a summer baby so I blamed my love of the water and heat on that. However now that I’m older and I work more and I have two kids, I desperately wish that we just lived some place that each season is clearly defined. Like say the north east or Nebraska (Midwest) around that area.  And while I love Mississippi (it’s home) I itch for mountains and trees where it looks like the horizon is on fire, crisp mornings followed by crisp nights around the fire place.  I want to have a white Christmas.  I’m sure that if I lived somewhere that had snow for month after month, I’d tire of it quickly.  But I lived in New York for a couple years as a child and I cannot recall it being terrible. As a matte of fact, it took me a while to adjust to the fact that I would no longer have a white Christmas down here.  I’ve accepted it. But at 34, I still very much wish it to happen.  Just like every year when my calendar says it’s the first day of fall, I somehow get my hopes that I’ll see bright reds, oranges, yellows, covering the sky line, and having piles of leaves to jump in.  I keep hoping that Halloween night will be ended with a camp fire and some smores not melted off makeup and sweaty preteen smelling costumes. I keep waiting for Mississippi to “fall” into the Perfect Season.  Do y’all have a favorite season? Or a favorite tradition that is a MUST once fall hits your town? I’d love to know what it is!

Our hayride after church!

Pumpkin Patches and corn mazes! We visit a corn maze every year! It’s my favorite family tradition!

For Better or Worse.

Most people don’t go into a marriage expecting the worse part to show its ugly head early on. I think most of us really feel that the worse will show up after ten years or so. I mean, you’re getting married for Pete’s sake. You are completely in love, it’s all exciting, it’s all coming together. You are beginning a journey based off of hopes and dreams.  First things first, Nick and I celebrated our three year wedding anniversary this past April.  Three years. Only three. And yet our second year of marriage we were met with a hump on the road to marital bliss.

Nick isn’t one to share things. Like very little to none at all with the general public. Our family and marital issues are ours and ours alone. And rightfully so. But I’m writing this post because this isn’t so much about our marriage but because of the TBI (traumatic brain injury) that decided to put its bitch ass into the smack dab center of our family and marriage. And I’m sharing our experience because after joining a Facebook support group and talking with others affected by numerous concussions, it’s obvious that society still doesn’t understand and that the family members and friends of the TBI loved one still feel anger and emotions towards the problem and sometimes the victim. This is his 5th TBI.

Life has changed as we once knew it. The person I married has changed.  I have changed. Our family has changed.  I wanted to share the REALITY of our life and the REALITY OF TBI.

People don’t get it. When you break something or have scars, something that’s VISIBLY wrong with you, it’s easier for other human beings to understand. It’s easier for them to be sympathetic. When it’s your brain however, the damage is hidden. You look the same on the outside so you MUST BE BETTER!! wrong. So very wrong. People continue to put unneeded stress & continue to demand the same things if not more than they use too and the person who has suffered the TBI is just not capable of always resuming their regular responsibilities. It’s overwhelming, emotional, and does more harm than folks realize.

Depression Risk is Higher.  Repeated concussions raise the risks of a person becoming clinically depressed. So much so that they also have an increased rate of suicide. They will need your love and support. They will need the assistance of a professional and some meds to help them get through life. 

YOUR LOVED ONE IS STILL IN THERE.  They still love you. And they desperately want to be able to do the same things they were use too. But they can’t. Speech may be affected. Other motor skills can be affected.  Be patient. Be kind. I can get frustrated. And angry. And it’s sometimes hard for me to not want to lash out at my husband.  Maverick was just 2 months when it happened. Nick couldn’t get out of bed for WEEKS. I was exhausted from lack of sleep, working, and what felt like taking care of 3 kids and 3 dogs all by myself. I was so angry and sad. I ended up having to be put on Zoloft to help me cope.  My advise, join a support group. Talk to someone. But try not to lash out at your family member, loved one, spouse. It does absolutely no good.

NEW NORMAL.  Say goodbye to doing things together that might cause over stimulation.  Concerts, places with too many people or noises. Night clubs. Anything with strobe lights. If the person has been exposed to several TBIs, say goodbye to doing any activities that has an increased risk of getting another. 

Ongoing MEDICAL NEEDS. He/she might need ongoing counseling to battle depression or help with managing stress, temper, memory improvement and problem solving.  Treatment for migraines and vertigo.

•They are Brain Damaged not Brain Dead.  Okay, sometimes you’re going to want to just do all the shit yourself because it’s easier than watching your significant other struggle or get it done painstakingly slow. But don’t. DO NOT start taking over everything as if they are some helpless child.  They need to relearn. It’s hard to watch them struggle but it’s part of the process. It’s also damaging their pride and self worth. Help if it gets to be too much or if asked. Don’t treat them like incapable children.

I could go on but it would take up entirely way to much time.  I hope that this has opened your eyes a little bit to the struggles people have when it comes to TBI. Or at the very least let you know that if you’re going through this, you are not alone. 

Have an amazing and blessed day! Love, The Brett Family

Master Bedroom Reno.

So y’all we’ve lived in our house for three and a half years. We ripped up the carpet in our bedroom like 2 years ago I think. A third dog, a pregnancy, a new baby, an accident at work, we FINALLY put paint on our walls and floors are down! I am doing a happy dance right now. Walking on bare unfinished concrete floors sucks. Walking on bare concrete floors in the winter time sucks major balls.  

So we painted the room. In June of last year. 😂 and we finally HIRED someone to put down the floors 8 months later. As in like two weeks ago.  I’m pretty sure that we are not doing another thing to this room.  But here it is y’all. Our little slice of heaven. 

My 2015 Year End Rant! 

Another glorious (cough cough) year is finally coming to an end and I couldn’t be more thrilled.  While 2015 has brought our family the greatest of blessings ( sweet baby Maverick) it’s left me exhausted. And I mean it in every possible way. I’m so tired of so much hurt and pain that’s occurring everywhere.  I’m very tired of how overly sensitive this nation has become. I’m so tired of so many things that I’m going to dedicate this entire post to bitching about it all!!  

*********Disclaimer**********

I’m not politically correct. I file that under STUFF I COULDN’T GIVE A SHIT ABOUT. So before you read this, you might offended. But I don’t care. These are my thoughts and opinions. You don’t have to read them, agree with them, or like them. 

  • Trump for President.   Okay, I know a lot of you out there REALLY THINK that he’d make an awesome president but he’d be shit as president!!!!  First, he’s a bigot. An openly, unapologetic bigot.  You cannot expect to talk shit about another country, race, ethinicty and then want to talk about a peace treaty with them.  I’m not saying play nice all the time. Sometimes it’s passed time to kick some ass.  But pissing off people all over the world is not going to get folks to back us. He wants to run the country like a business. It’s not a business. It’s a nation and he could very well run it into the ground.  He’s a womanizer. He’s dodged the draft. You want a man who refused to fight for your country to lead the nation?! Um, okay. Yea that sounds legit. He doesn’t know the first thing about being commander and chief.  Get your head out of your ass America, he’s not the right man for the job. 
  • The Pussification of a Nation.  I cannot even begin to tell you how much I hate hearing or reading about the ways that someone has been offended. People, life is not fair. I shouldn’t have to pretend to not want to hurt your feelings. Truthfully, I give two shits about your feelings. I have a CHRISTMAS TREE in my house. You don’t?! Well great for you. Guess what, I don’t care. It doesn’t offend me or bother me in any shape, way, or form.  You shouldn’t be offended that I don’t refer to mine as a holiday tree. Teachers shouldn’t mark the paper with red because it’s harsh. Harsh?? Um, an F is a F regardless if it’s in red ink or if you make it look like Rainbow Bright puked all over the fucking paper. Also, giving every child a ribbon or trophy is stupid. The corporate world doesn’t give a shit that you tried your best. You don’t get drafted to NFL because you’ve got heart and you’re a “winner!” You get drafted because your good! You keep your job because you do well! Life doesn’t hand out stickers for just showing up! Stop making your children think it should!  Don’t like something on Facebook (that’s not harming a child, animal, etc) scroll past it. Get over it.  Suck shit up people seriously! Your whining over dumb shit is hard to swallow and makes me want to punch you in the throat!!!
  • The fight for your right to breastfeed in public. Dude, I applaud you and the billion other women on the planet that want to breast feed their baby.  I have two children. I pumped for 6 months with my first and only for 2 with Baby Maverick because I made a very selfish decision (sarcasm) to not be a dairy cow to my child. I know. I hear you already! OMG how could you?! You’re taking something beautiful and making it seem blah blah blah. Guess what. They’re my titties. My kid. With that being said, I don’t think you should be made to feed your baby in the bathroom. What I do find annoying though is every 5 fucking seconds there’s a blog entry, article, or Instagram about it. Whatever happened to this being a very special and important moment being PERSONAL?! Why suddenly is everyone having to confess their need to breastfeed.   I don’t care if you breastfeed your baby at a restaurant. However, you need to realize that even though we shouldn’t have to worry about other people snapping pictures of your boobage, the sad reality is that it does happen. It’s a risk you take when you do not want to bottle feed and you refuse to cover up.  Again, I hear the comments. I’m not condoning the person taking the picture. I’m just saying it’s going to happen. Also, if you don’t want someone else posting a picture of you breastfeeding on social media, how come you post your own pictures on social media? So it’s okay if it was associated with a “beautiful moment” vs “cover up” comments. That’s called a double standard. 
  • Keep the immigrants out!!!!!! Oh, so you’re entire lineage is from North America right? As in from the Indians that were here when Christopher Columbus docked his ship on the shores.  None of you bitching about the immigrants have Anglo Saxon, Irish, German, Spanish,Italian,French, Puerto Rican, Mexican, etc? Right?  This nation was affectionately known as the “melting pot” because of its’ various races and ethinicty within its’ boarders.  It use to be the country that promised freedom and happiness. Do any of you remember why the United States was gifted the Statue of Liberty?  Do you even know what it says? It says “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breath free.” When did you people feel that this country that has openly accepted YOUR ANCESTORS, should now close its borders to everyone?! Also, those who want to fight illegal immigration need to start looking at American businesses.  These people coming here are doing so because an AMERICAN is paying them under the table. They’re given jobs that most Americans feel are beneath them. It’s a hard pill to swallow I know. That your own neighbor has Carlos doing his roof. Yea. Thought so. Hope you don’t choke on it. Do I think we should have to learn their language and offer them all kinds of free health care, with other governments benefits, uh no. But shit we already offer it to good ole fashion Americans who don’t want to work and breed like German Shepards. All I’m saying is openly accept that the rest of the world views us the land of opportunity. The land of freedom. Those who go through the right channels should be given the same chance our great great great etc, were given.  I love America.  She use to be amazing. I think she still is underneath all the political correct bullshit and self righteous assholes.  But I hate to say it, if things don’t change, it’s only going to get so so much worse.
  • Common Core.  I hated school when I had to go.  Now I hate school now that my daughter goes even more so.  I have ZERO hours in common core math so how the hell am I supposed to help my kid in shit I’ve never seen much less understand. Critical thinking skills, rationalizing, how about we get our kids to successfully wash the shampoo out of their hair before you start trying to make them into rocket scientist . How about we master the basics before the educational system tells them that they need to draw the blueprints to some piece of equipment Sheldon Cooper thought of?! Teachers hate it. Kids hate it. I loathe it. 

With that my friends, I will