Words of Wisdom on my baby girls 21st Birthday!

TWENTY ONE YEARS OLD! How did that even happen? WHEN did it happen? Seems like just yesterday we were celebrating your high school graduation and I was coming to terms with the fact that you were LEAVING. Now THIS! If it wasn’t for the fact that you were so responsible and mature, I don’t think my heart could handle it. Lucky for me, you are. 

I clearly remember sitting at my desk writing my words for your brothers when they turned 21. Of course, it was all about laying low on the drinking (last week’s headaches proved they didn’t listen), cautioning them on the dangers of strip clubs (gross), telling them to trust their gut and run when things seemed “shady”, and reminding them that the great freedom they had just stumbled upon came with enormous amounts of responsibility (not sure any of that sank in). None of that seems appropriate for you, though. On the contrary, my words for you are the complete opposite. 

For you, I have the following: 

• Let loose every now and then. It is not only acceptable, but encouraged, to have a RESPONSIBLE night out on the town. In this day and age there are no excuses for drinking and driving. CALL AN UBER. I will even pay for it. But promise me you will have a night filled with “vodka and regret” sometime soon. (And take pics, post on snapchat, and facetime me throughout the night as often as you can. I can even join you if you want, just sayin’). 
*And for those of you shocked that I am encouraging my daughter to have a night out, mind your business! You clearly do not know me or my kid.*

• Make time for Family – Stay connected to your brothers as much as possible. Yes, they’re annoying but they will become less so as the years go on. Promise.

• Don’t let one person become who you live for- if you do, make sure that one person is YOU. Learn to love yourself as unconditionally as you will love the children you will one day have. There is no feeling quite like it. This I can assure you of. 

• Don’t over analyze your thoughts or anyone else’s. No one’s opinion of you matters that much, not even mine. Trust your gut as often as possible but feel free to ignore it every now and then, too. There is no ONE decision that will ruin your life forever. I am living proof of this.

• Find your passion and stick to it. Doesn’t matter what it is. If you love it, it’s ALWAYS the right thing to do. Having lots of money may make paying the bills a lot easier to do but it won’t help getting out of bed each and every day any better. Do what you love, everything else will work itself out.

• You are not defined by your job title, relationship status, or bank account. You are your experiences.

• Gain those experiences by Travel. Go to as many magical places as you can but learn to appreciate coming home just as much.

• Write your feelings down. Any time I feel overwhelmed or confused, I write. Somehow it all makes sense on paper. (A little surpise on this topic is on its way to you now.)

• Be grateful for at least one thing every morning- you’ll be surprised how much this can set you up to have a beautiful day. And then write about that, too.. (see how this is all tying together..)

• Never assume, always ask questions- even the ones that make you feel uncomfortable; those are the ones that will teach you the most.

• Hold on to people that bring you love & joy, and once these people no longer do, know that it’s okay to let them go.

• Never be afraid to come to me with any of your problems and I promise to always listen and never judge- all I ask is that you do the same for others, me included.

• Listen to your mother. I speak from experience. Not because I have followed all of the advice I have given but because I WISH I had. 

• And most importantly, even when you can’t understand how or why, believe me when I tell you that life will always go on… and I will always be right there if you need me. 

Oh, my love, you have reached those wonderfully selfish years; the ones filled with so much adventure and curiosity. Embrace each and every moment of it. Even the ones that turn out to be mistakes of colossal proportions. I promise you, with every fiber of my being, that I will ALWAYS be right there beside you; cheering you on, picking you up, and reminding you how truly loved you are. 

Have an AMAZING day, my baby! Mommy loves you to the moon and back. Always have. Always will.

Words of Wisdom for Dylan's 24th Birthday

On November 30th, 24 years ago, I became a mother for the second time. 

There’s no denying 24 is a strange time in ones life; I know it was for me. And although you don’t have two kids like I did (thank God) I’m guessing you’re finding yourself in this state as well. Trust me, I get it. 

My guess is that you’re finding yourself in that “in between” stage. The one in which You’re definitely an adult, with all of the rights and responsibilities of one, but you still have the energy and mindset of a teenager. 

This certainly isn’t 20 when you’re “almost” legal, or 21 when you’re “really legal” and ordering a drink at dinner (or anytime actually) is not only allowed but perfectly acceptable. 

You’re not 22 when you finally graduated college and got your dream job (or what you thought was your dream job), or 23 when you quit that job to find something better. It’s freakin’ 24!!! 

In my usual fashion, here are the words of wisdom from someone who was once 24 and has been right where you’re at – only with two kids in tow. 

1. You’re getting older. And so are we. As are your grandparents. We’re not gonna be around forever. So as much as I admire this new found independence you have; PLEASE make some time for family too. 

2. You’ve probably reached a “zero effs given” mentality. Wanna pierce your nose? Do it. Want to shave your head? Go right ahead! Want to leave and backpack the world for six months. BYE. Just make sure you can still make rent next month. And that you’re health insurance is up to date. You know how accident prone you are.

3. It’s ok to use “I’m too old to be doing/saying/acting…..” as a reason to stop yourself from doing/acting/saying things you don’t want to or shouldn’t do. As much as you don’t want to admit it, you probably are. Maturity isn’t a bad thing. Now I’m not saying you’re super old and your youth isn’t something to hold onto as long as possible, I’m just saying whatever you do or say will probably be used against you in the future.. probably in a job interview for your REAL dream job. So think wisely about what you put out there for all the world to see. 

4. On that note, you might want to consider cutting back on some of the social media accounts and spend a tiny bit more time updating your LinkedIN. As ridiculous as this may sound, you’re just going to have to trust me on this one. 

5. While you now have a steady income and can probably afford to splurge; DON’T! Your credit is more important than ever. Refrain as much as you can. Credit cards are REALLY only for emergencies. And no, a night on the square a week before payday isn’t considered an emergency, but food and gas most certainly are. I speak from experience on this one.

6. Learn to balance you’re work and social life. There are times when calling in sick for a concert is not only acceptable but essential to your quality of life. The secret is knowing when. If you use up all your hours at ACL then accept the fact that Coachella isn’t gonna happen for you this year and that you’re probably going to have to go in even on the days you really do feel like crap. Don’t forget the financial part. Without that job, EVERYTHING is out. 

7. Appreciate the people in your life. All of them. Even the ones you wish weren’t there; certain Co- workers, your boss, etc. A few years from now you’ll realize what an important role they played in shaping who you became. 

8. While I’ve always admired the enormous amount of friends you have always had it might be time to weed some of them out. Between work and home responsibilities; a little me-time is more important than ever. If ALL of these people are so important to you that you just can’t fathom the thought of EVER turning one of them away, then learn how to prioritize your time. A REAL friend will understand.

That’s it! I do hope you enjoyed your day. It was really hard not to spend it with you but one of the things I need to accept is that your life is your own and your home isn’t with me anymore. I promise I’m trying… and I didn’t cry as long as I usually do so I think I’m finally becoming a grown up too! You’re welcome.😊❤️🎁

Mama loves you to the moon and back. Always have, always will.