I want to brag a minute…….

Every parent says their kids are the best, that they are the most beautiful, smartest, creative etc. And as much as I think those things about my girls, they have something else that I don’t hear about in a lot of kids.

Jerzi is almost 8 years old. She is going into the second grade and school starts in 2 weeks. Now she is by far from perfect. But she does put all her effort into almost everything she does. Jerzi does battle with EDS, Bi Polar, ADHD, anxiety, and PTSD. She also has many allergies. I hate that I passed all this down to her, but she doesn’t let it stop her from doing anything. My daughter has been through and witnessed a lot of trauma and abuse in her short life. She has grown up without a father, and has had people important in her life abandon her. I wish I could take all that pain away from her, that I know she hides but I can see it in her eyes.

But she has the biggest heart I have ever seen in a child. She asked me last week (for the first time ever) where her father is and how come he doesn’t want to be in her life. At first I was frozen and didn’t know what to say. But after a second of thinking and remembering my mother bashing my father and telling me things I shouldn’t have known about at that young age, I decided to tell her the truth. I told her that HE wasn’t ready to be a daddy. And that it was ok, because she has always had me. I also told her that she has her MOMO, POPO, Papa, Grandma, Uncle, Her auntie Alex and Uncle Warren, and her sister (and soon to be other sister) that love her more than anything in the world. I told her that I love her twice as much as most mommys because I am her mommy and her daddy. With out hesitation she gave me the biggest hug and kiss and thanked me. At that moment I had never been more proud of my little girl.

Today she asked me how many days until school starts. I told her and asked her if she was excited. Her answer was yes, but she had this sad look on her face. I asked what was wrong. She told me that she loves school and is super excited, but worried about me and Harli. Why ? I asked. She said because there is no one here to take care of you mom when I’m gone and Harli will be lonely and miss me. ( Now understand please that she helps me tremendously with Harli, but she doesn’t take care of me per se. She will ask if I need anything or keep Harli out of our room if I am sleeping.) I gave her a big hug and told her that I will be fine and Harli will get used to her going to school again.

It is sad that she is worried about me. She shouldn’t have to be. But my daughter does think of everyone before herself. She is just like me when it comes to that. She cares about everyone’s feelings and how they are doing and hate seeing me or her sister sick or in pain.

Any ways the point of this post was that as much as I am the normal mom that brags about how pretty my kids are and how smart they are, and this and that. I wanted everyone to know just how caring and loving my baby girl is in a way that not even most adults are.

Is there something you notice and are proud of your children for that the average parent doesn’t talk about? Please share in the comments as I would love to read it.

All my love

Getting Jerzi ready for school

Why is this so hard for me? Its not that shes growing up or Im losing my baby like most moms. For me it is the anxiety of registration, which went horribly wrong today. Getting school supplies. Buying school clothes but staying in dress code and also making sure it is something that Jerzi won’t fight me to put on every day. Its making sure she is on the right bus and gets home safely (the transportation system lost her 3 times last year). Its the stress of knowing that she will be gone 8 hours and my little helper won’t be here with me. Does any one else have anxiety like this with their child? I worry that I have to have that conversation with her teacher and school nurse about her illnesses (mental and physical) will they understand? Will they listen? Will they blow her off when she says her legs hurt and she can’t do what they want her to do in PE. Or her allergies act up and she can’t go out during recess. Will the school help this year when it comes to field trips and money needed for her to participate in things when I can’t afford them? Most parents don’t understand how hard it is to be a low income single mom disabled with 2 children that have their own illnesses and I try to balance it all and be there and involoved as much as possible. What is even worse is when she comes home with that sheet of homework, that I am supposed to her help her get done, and with my brain issues and memory loss, I can’t comprehend the directions to help her. She is so smart and I am extremely thankful because she is reteaching me. I am so proud of my little girl and I know she will ROCK the second grade, but its MOMMY that needs the help and support. My baby girl has got this and has it all under control……. Breathe mom, count to ten, and trust that everything will be ok.

Any advice or words of encouragement are very welcomes. Even your own experiences and fears.

Being a single mom

I’m 21 weeks today. It’s a huge accomplishment as I’m still dealing with preterm labor every day. It’s also really hard, as I am doing it alone. Yes I have the support (for the most part) from my family. My best friend (who is a million miles away in North Dakota) is there for any time I need her. But I’m missing that one piece in my support system. One that I have never really known.

With Jerzi, her father was there, but totally not supportive at all. Only went to one Dr appointment and was there when she was born but not there for me. And then decided after she was born his crs were more important than us. When she was 18 months he decided he didn’t want to be a dad.

With Harli, I found out I was pregnant with her 2 days after leaving my drug addict ex. I chose not to have him around because he became abusive. He has still yet to get clean even after I have given him chance after chance to be in her life.

Now with Daniella, her father is a down right fucking idiot! He used me for my money, cheated on me and told everyone he didn’t want this baby. (He has 2 other kids that he would do any thing to see) He was verbally abusive and a complete narcissist. So I came back home to be with family. It has taken them awhile to come around to the fact that I am having another baby, but I know everything will be ok in my heart, because this is my third time doing this.

It is just the alone feeling that I can’t stand. I’m not worried about caring for her by myself or providing for her. It’s not having that companionship to share this with that person. To experience this all alone in my head. To not have someone hug me when I am having a bad day or to hold my hand through these horrible contractions that are way too early to be here.

I’m sorry for the sappy feel bad for me post this morning but that’s what these are for right? To let out how I feel.

I hope everyone has a great day!

All my love!

Body Image

So tonights topic is body image and the difference between how society expects woman to look and how I feel (and I’m sure most of you agree)/ Also since my almost 8 year old daughter is going through the early stages of puberty I think this is a very important topic.

Everywhere in the world we see magazines and models and celebrities without an ounce of fat, no acne, stretch marks, cellulite, perfect hair, etc. Alot of people don’t realize that it is not real. The human body no matter who you are will eventually age, your skin will change and we all know it sucks. But what isn’t fair is that my daughter thinks that her little pudge on her belly makes her fat. She is 4″2′ and 57 lbs. Shes beautiful and proportionate for her body type. she has the typical “baby fat” that every child has. Yet why is she ashamed and self conscious of it?

Because the media tells her she shouldn’t look that way! Even on the disney channel you see these skinny beautiful girls, with tons of friends and attentions. And then there is the one curvier girl that they always make the “funny one” who tells all the jokes but doesn’t get the same attention. So how is she supposed to feel? Not normal, not pretty, because the kids on tv tell her shes fat. Its absolute bullshit.

The way I see it, is that every woman, no matter shape or size is beautiful. I for one have never been the “skinny girl”. I was curvy yet proportionate. After having my oldest daughter, I gained 90 lbs with her and was covered in stretch marks with a c-section scar that I knew I would have forever. At first I was really depressed and felt horrible about myself, but I eventually learned that I was still the same person. And I had a beautiful baby girl to show for the changes in my body. I lost most of the weight and felt great, but then got pregnant with my second daughter. I gained 11 lbs with her and not a single stretch mark. It made me laugh how different my body still was after her c-section, because it was totally something different than the first time. But this time I knew I was BEAUTIFUL!

Now pregnant with my third little girl, and I actually lost 30 lbs in the first trimester and only gained 10 back so far, I think I look amazing. I don’t care if my body is covered head to toe in stretch marks, or if my c-section scar gets bigger and longer. These are my battle scars of motherhood and I cherish every one of them.

I hope that I can teach my daughter, that its the inside that counts, but also as long as you feel beautiful, then it doesn’t matter what the rest of the world thinks. ( It also helps that her mama tells her every day hehe)

Please remember that no matter your shape, size, skin color, hair, scars, curves, skinniness, breast size, or any part of your body you are unsure of, YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL!

All my love

Depression and Anxiety : Natural foods to help

I was given this topic by my therapist, and I’m assuming it was because I’m 5 months pregnant and can’t really take much to help my depression and anxiety so I am doing some research on foods we can eat to help…… not so sure they would work as I’m not quite convinced but if you have some that you have tried that are not listed here please feel free to add them in the comments. So here goes.

Foods that fight depression:

1. Dark Leafy Greens

If you were to choose the healthiest food of all, the most nutrient-dense item available to us to eat, it would be dark, leafy greens, no contest. Spinach. Kale. Swiss chard.  (So eat more salad haha)

2. Walnuts

Walnuts are one of the richest plant-based sources of omega-3 fatty acids, and numerous studies have demonstrated how omega-3 fatty acids support brain function and reduce depression symptoms ( I guess carry walnuts in your purse and a nut cracker for when your are feeling depressed)

3. Avocado

 Three-fourths of theCALORIES of an avocado are from fat, mostly monosaturated fat, in the form of oleic acid. An average avocado also contains 4 grams of protein, higher than other fruits, and is filled with vitamin K, different kinds of vitamin B (B-9, B-6, and B-5), vitamin C, and vitamin E-12. Finally, they are low in sugar and high in dietary fiber, containing about 11 grams each. (I love avacado and eat it often but I still don’t see how protein and fat is good for depression)

4. Berries

Blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, and blackberries are some of the highest antioxident foods available to us. They are like DNA repairmen. They go around fixing your cells and preventing them from getting cancer and other illnesses.

5. Mushrooms

Here are two good reasons mushrooms are good for your mental health. First, their chemical properties oppose insulin, which helps lower blood sugar levels, evening out your mood. They also are like a probiotic in that they promote healthy gut bacteria. And since the nerve cells in our gut manufacture 80 percent to 90 percent of our body’s serotonin the critical neurotransmitter that keeps us sane — we can’t afford to not pay attention to our intestinal health. (The first food that i actually found an explanation how it could help……note to self: eat more mushrooms.)

6. Onions

You won’t find this item on most lists of mood foods. However, it’s included in Fuhrman’s G-BOMBS because onions and all allium vegetables (garlic, leeks, chives, shallots, and spring onions) have been associated with a decreased risk of several cancers. (Why does every website I have been to about foods for depression, lead back to the answer always being to help cancer……aren’t we trying to help depression here?)

7. Tomatoes

Tomatoes contain lots of folic acid and alpha-lipoic acid, both of which are good for fighting depression. According to research published in the Journal of Psychiatry and Neuroscience, many studies show an elevated incidence of folate deficiency in patients with depression. In most of the studies, about one-third of depression patients were deficient in folate. Folic acid can prevent an excess of homocysteine — which restricts the production of important neurotransmitters like serotonin, dopamine, and norepinephrine — from forming in the body. ( Ok Eat more tomatoes…. GOT IT!)

8. Beans

“Beans, beans, good for the heart. The more you eat, the more you … smile.” They make the G-BOMB list because they can act as anti-diabetes. They are good for mood because the body digests them slowly, which stabilizes blood sugar levels. Any food that assists in evening out blood sugar levels is  your friend. (Or so I keep reading)

9. Seeds

Flaxseeds, hemp seeds, and chia seeds are especially good for your mood because they are rich in omega-3 fatty acids. (Do normal people actually eat these because I sure don’t….. When depressed I reach for that donut not seeds)

10. Apples

An apple a day could — if eaten with the rest of these foods — keep the psychiatrist away, at least for stretches of time. Like berries, apples are high in antioxidants, which can help to prevent and repair oxidation damage and inflammation on the cellular level. They are also full of soluble fiber, which balances blood sugar swings.

Ok so what I have gathered from this list of foods, is if you keep your blood sugar at a normal level and your protein then you will be able to fight your depression. I don’t know if I believe this but hey…. I will give it a try and eat some of these every day and see how it goes. Personally I think its a bunch of BS. haha Sorry but thats how I feel. Feel free to comment on what helps with your depression and anxiety (it doesn’t have to be food) I hope every one has a great day.

Sensitive Topics

How is everyone doing today? Good I hope. I have a topic that is controvertial and honestly if you don’t agree I would appreciate if you don’t comment anything hateful but I would appreciate your input as well.

As every one knows, I am currently pregnant, and I also have two other little girls. What you don’t know is that I am not STRAIGHT. Let me tell you a story about me.

When I was 10 years old I noticed that I was not only attracted to boys but girls as well. I found females to be more friendly, open, sensitive, and so beautiful. I had my first sexual experience with a girl at 11 yrs old (not that we really knew what we were doing at that age lol) and all I had done with a boy was kiss. I didn’t really know what gay, or bi, or straight was. I just knew how I FELT.

Through out middle school I had gfs and bfs, and eventually told my mom. Which she was totally cool with, especially since my uncle was gay as well. So I wasn’t shunned or put down for the way I felt. But I never truly felt that the term “bisexual” fit me. At the time though that was all there was to describe how I felt so I rolled with it.

In high school, I met the true love of my life, I would have done anything for this girl. Our problem was she wasn’t out. So we had to hide our relationship. I loved her so much, that I didn’t care. As time went on of course, it became harder and harder for me to hide our relationship. We ended up breaking up and getting back together numerous time. She is now married with 2 kids and I’m happy for her, but if she called me today I would drop everything and be with her.

Any ways the point of this post was to explain what my sexuality is. In todays world I am considered “Omnisexual” It basically mean that I love every one. I do not have a specific sexual preference, my attractivness to a person is based on personality not their sexual organs. Its hard for people to understand. But that is how I am.

I get this questions of I get a lot are ” How are you pregnant if your attracted to girls?” If you like men why do you date females? ” ” Would you date some one trangender?” (Yes I have) It is hard sometimes with the discrimination I get, or the confusion of my family and friends, but at the end of the day, I know who I am. And I know that it doesn’t matter to me what sex you are, I still will show you the same repect and love no matter what.

Not a great day…..but I’m still alive

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I didn’t sleep well last night. Like most nights. Between contractions, pain, and my anxiety it was damn near impossible. I guess this non stop rain isn’t helping at all. I love the sound and smell of rain, but the humidity and pressure just kills my body. Is anyone else like that? What do you do to feel better when the rain causes you pain? I have tried ice, heat, pillows, double pain meds……. gggrrrr I am frustrated.

Days like this when the pain takes over, and I can’t think of anything else, are the days I feel more alone than ever. I’m sure a lot of people feel that way too. Most people don’t understand the pain someone with Ehlers-Danlos deal with. It’s like having the flu, arthritis, broken bones, and being ran over by an 18 wheeler times.

I’m going back to bed…… btw any one recommend any good movies or tv show series I can watch on Netflix. I’ve seen most of the “popular” ones. Thanks guys

All my love!

Abandonment to Support

I have been through a lot in my life. I have lost a lot of people in my life for many reasons. My dad left when I was 2. I lost my best friend to a car accident at 7. When I had brain surgery at 14, I lost everyone but 3 people. it didn’t make sense to me at the time because I was popular, a cheerleader, and I thought I had lots of friends. Those three close friends stuck by me throughout high school and I made other friends as well. Yet when I had Jerzi at 20 years old, those three friends went down to two. I did make an amazing friend through Jerzis father that has stuck by my side though. So you win one and you lose one. When I went to beauty school I felt so blessed because the people there were amazing. Yet after graduation, they disappeared too. When I met Harlis dad, bad things happened and I ended up being in an abusive and controlling relationship and was forced to shut out my friends and family. Luckily after leaving and restarting my life with my two girls one friend of 16 years stuck around, and the friend I made when pregnant with Jerzi  was there for me like no other. I started losing my relationship with my mother because she was so brain washed by her husband. That household and relationship became toxic. I got really sick in October 2013, and the abuse got worse. so I definitely feel that even though she was there physically, my mom abandoned me too. I got back together with an ex boyfriend from forever ago and moved to Reno to get away from all the drama, negativity and abuse. That man, not only got me pregnant (which I am very blessed for) but he used me for all of my disability money, was not the nicest to my kids, and was cheating on me in front of my face. He even told me to kill myself and my unborn baby. So again another person left me.

What hurts the most out of every one I lost, was my ex best friend Alexa. we were friends for 17 years. She was the god mother to my children, We did everything together. Had no secrets, I was there for her when she started getting sick even though I was dying. One day she just out of no where, stopped talking to me. Wouldnt answer phone calls, texts, emails. I even went as far as contacting  Her father and husband because I was worried something had happened to her. After a month she finally text me telling me that Im a toxic person and I can’t be in her life any more. I am still very confused about all that. The crazy thing is, she was diagnosed with Chiari Malformation 3 days before out conversations stopped. You would think that would have made us even closer as I have lived my whole life with it.

At the end of the day, I have one person I know I can truly say she will never walk away. Alexandra Kawwa, is the best person I have ever met. She truly is my sister. She has the biggest heart, so caring, generous, selfless, and would give the shirt off her back to any one even if it was the only thing she owned. she is a great mother to her kids and a wonderful wife. I couldn’t ask for more in a best friend. I miss her terribly as she moved to North Dakota. The ironic thing is she started to get sick too a while back, and her symptoms were just like mine. Sure enough, she has Chiari as well. Its crazy, and I hate  she has to suffer from this terrible disease, but it has brought us closer.

I have a HUGE Chiari and support system online. A few people I have become extremely close to a few people, and I don’t know what I would do without them, especially on bad days. I also have an amazing therapist that I have seen now for 2 years and a BST worker that i can’t live with out. if It wasn’t for her I would have commited suicide when I was at my lowest. But she was there every step of the way.

My point of this post, was that although people have walked out of my life and it hurt at the time and still does with some, I am still blessed with the people I do have in my life. I couldn’t ask for more.

If you have dealt with abandonment, or are feeling alone, reach out to the ones who are there for you. Any one reading this can reach out to me to talk through comments, fabebook, or email……… Kust remember YOU ARE NOT Alone!!]]

All my love,

Bed Rest

Hi everyone. My name is Brandi. I have never done a blog before, but decided to start one with the help of a friend since I am on bed rest due to complications with the pregnancy of my third little girl. I am currently 20 weeks along and in preterm labor.Yay! Not really, its horrible having contractions all the time, and being on meds that don’t take them away, and also being stuck in bed, You can only watch so much TV ya know.

Im also starting this as I have Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (vascular and hypermobility type) Chiari Malformation type 1, POTS, Cervical Cranial Instability, Fibromyalgia, Neuropothy, Bi Polar, Anxiety, PTSD, and other numerous health issues. Both my girls have EDS as well, and we are awaiting other diagnoses. I want to be able to share my experiences, ask questions to others, and answer other people’s questions and concerns. So feel free to comment on any post any time.

Please forgive me if this sometimes becomes a poor me post or I am just down, and seem to ask a lot of questions. Chronic illness can do that to you as most of you know.

I will also be writing about what it is like to be a single mother of 3 children, living off of disability, and being sick. I hope some people follow my blog, as I feel it could be helpful for me and you to hear each others experiences and answer any questions to the best of our knowledge.

I hope every one has a great day!

Your Zebra Sister