Learning to love.

Wow. I have not posted in quite a bit. But this book I am so excited about.

It’s been 6 months since I made the best decision I’ve made in awhile. I started dating the guy I’ve been blindly in love with and who’s been my best friend (without me even really noticing) for the past 3 years. But boy has it been a bumpy ride. Yes, we have our typical disagreements and bickering. And these fights have taught us so much about each other, how we work as a partnership, and about our love.

When in a relationship, you want to make your S.O. happy and show them every day how much you love them. I had heard so many things about this book called The 5 Love Languages: The Secret to Love That Lasts by Gary Chapman and how it changes your view on your relationship and love. Let me tell you this book really did change how my boyfriend and I expressed our love to one another, learned a lot about how I receive love, and how to love him.

I definitely recommend everyone to read this whether or not you are in a relationship or married.

So my boyfriend and I took the tests and found out our love languages. They were completely opposite of one another which is no big deal. His was acts of service and gift giving and mine were words of affirmation and quality time.

I always wondered why he would get so happy when I bought something so small like a basket for the house or wrote him a letter telling him how great he was. Or whenever he would come home to the house being cleaned or dinner cooked because I knew he hadn’t had the time to do these things or was just so stressed out. Turns out that it was how he received love the best and what made him feel loved. Before reading this book, I would sometimes get annoyed that I was cleaning or felt as if I was a housewife without the ring or even living at the house (even though he calls it our place). After reading it though, it gave me a better understanding of why he liked me doing or wanted me to help out. It put me more at ease and I wanted to do these things again just out of the fact to show him that I cared and loved him.

As for me, after he found out my love languages he made more of an effort to express it. Even though before he would always use words of affirmation to show me love, just now he makes it a point to do it more often. Every time I would come down because he was stressed and just needed me or for the fact that I cooked dinner or cleaned without him even having to ask, he would acknowledge it and tell me that he appreciates me and what I do. It made me feel good and know that he loves me. There are times where I will just be sitting there and I will catch him staring and even though I know I look horrible, he will tell me “You are so beautiful.” Although, he would say it before he does it more often to let me know that he appreciates me.

Even though we all love to hear how our S.O. loves us and appreciates us, the saying actions speak louder than words are still so important. Quality time is so hard for us with him being active in the military and preparing for deployment. I always wanted him to make time for me and to spend time with me. He would do the best that he could, but I still didn’t feel it was enough. Quality time was also a high love language for him just wasn’t his primary. He would always complain that the time that I was with I was on my phone and not fully listening to him. I would just ignore it and keep doing whatever I was doing because he did it to me as well (although that annoyed me too so I should’ve been more considerate). But after reading this section in the book, I knew that quality time wasn’t just being around each other. It was doing something together and giving your full undivided attention. Like when we go to dinner, we don’t go on our phones (which is hard for him with work but he does it) and we talk fully to each other. Which brings me to another point that I have learned quality time isn’t just physically being together doing something… it is having a quality conversation with one another. Ask questions, acknowledge what they are saying, communicate with one another. We have this issue that we try and have a quality conversation with each other at the wrong times. I’ll be in the middle of cooking, watching tv, or while he is playing video games. This is something that we are still working on, but after reading this book it gave me insight on how to work towards us expressing this love correctly and what would help.

Now of course this will all be different for different people. But this is what I gained from reading this book and I’m so glad I read it. I learned a lot from it and it’s not one of those boring self-help books that you get annoyed reading because you feel like you are reading a textbook or anything like that. It’s actually interesting and enjoyable. I believe it’s a must read (now if I could get my boyfriend to read it too haha). If you get the chance read it even if you don’t think you are having issues with expressing love or receiving love, it just gives you more ideas. 🙂

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Give and Receive

We all want to be loved, appreciated, and overall just acknowledged. But in order to receive these things we must reciprocate those feelings. We get so used to getting these things from our partners and getting wrapped up into ourselves that we forget about our partners and what they need and want. Just imagine if they stop showing their love for you, their appreciation for all that you do, or completely stop acknowledging your feelings and wants. You wouldn’t want that so why would you do it to them?

I’m not saying you have to shower them with gifts or flowers or anything along those lines. But more of just when you come say “Hi darling”, “How was your day”, or even just a thank you for doing the dishes, cleaning the house, etc. It just a simple acknowledgement that they are there and you appreciate them and what they do.

One big thing to acknowledge is their feelings. When you are fighting or when they are sharing their feelings with you, remember that they are vulnerable. They are trusting you with their heart and opening up to you. This is where you must acknowledge what they are saying. Do not tear them down, try and turn things on them, or just plainly do not respond. It makes it seem you do not care of what they have to say or how they are feeling. Explain that you understand what they are saying and then tell them how you see it and how you feel about it.

You may think that you’re doing everything and that it should be obvious that you love that person or what you are doing shows it. But you have to keep in mind your S.O.’s perspective and how they may see things. You could be unintentionally hurting them, so take the time to converse and communicate what you both need or want.

I have learned that I cannot be the only one expecting to get the love and attention that I want but that I must also reciprocate. But at the same time that it is not healthy for me to be the only that gives that affection. From experience it makes you feel unwanted, worthless, and under-appreciated. It takes a huge toll on your emotions, relationship, trust, and self-esteem.

Be in a relationship where you give and you take. When you feel you are not receiving the affection and attention to you want and need find that person you are able to express to them what it is that you are feeling and have a conversation about it. You will get no where if you do not communicate. Communication is a big part of your relationship. It is one of the core foundation. We have always been told treat others the way you want to be treated, and this is so true in a relationship. If you wouldn’t want to be talked to that way or treated that way then why would you do that to the person you love or care about?

Trust me it is a wonderful feeling to be loved and to love back. Love is powerful. Everyone should experience it and embrace it.

Becoming an Army girlfriend. 

The world has romanticized the whole idea of military relationships. But I guess the reason for it helps with the harsh reality of what is like being in a relationship when they are in the military. You are not in just a relationship with the person but with the military as well.

You better get used to spending a lot of time alone and coming in second… well to the country. But you really cannot complain. How can you? They are out there protecting you and the country you oh so love.

I’ve been in military relationships before but never fully experience the journey of becoming an actually military girlfriend…until now. Let me clarify that it is still romantic. How can you have a relationship without the romance? The only difference it is not like the romance you see in the movies.

When being an army girlfriend, you don’t always know what time he will be home or when you will be able to talk to him because he is so busy at work. Prepare for work talk all the time and phone calls throughout the night or day. There are no days off. He works full time and when I say full time I mean 24/7. There will be days that he will have to bring work home with him, so get ready to give him his space and wait for him to finish. Maybe cook some dinner or clean around the house so he is not distracted by you. Sometimes, he will be so stressed and you may feel like his anger or frustration is directed at you. Don’t worry it is not. He just had a long day at work and has a lot going on. You will sometimes barely see him for days or months at a time… and I’m not talking about deployment. He is going to have training, field work, or be on duty. He will barely have time to talk, won’t have service, or will be busy for almost over 24 hours at a time. Then, there is deployment…. it will happen, but do not worry, he was trained for this and let me tell you it is not romanticized like the movies. This is real life and happening to you both. Support him and make sure that you can handle this because it is not fair for either of you if you cannot stand by his side through it all. And on more thing, if your person is anything like mine and is ambitious and constantly wants to do better and be better, be prepared for him to be focused and that focus not being all on you. He will see his goal in sight and will be so narrowed in on it. I’m not saying he is going to forget you, but I am saying that you will not be his number one priority.

This will be even more tough if you are in college. You’re gonna be stressed and this relationship will stress you as well. Becoming an army girlfriend in college is another story because you are still figuring things out for yourself and working on yourself. He will still be there to support you, but it won’t always be at the times you want. When he can’t give you that attention or be there to talk when you are failing a class know that he still cares and supports you. He is just not physically able to or able to talk and comfort you at that time. You will have to learn that sometimes you have to cancel that party you wanted to go to because he actually gets a weekend off or not go out that night because that night is the only night he can Skype. Sometimes you will have to sacrifice sleep just to get that extra time to talk. It will be tough finding the balance between school and your relationship, but after trial and error you’ll get the hang of it.

Becoming an army girlfriend is lonely at times, but let me tell you when you are in that persons arms and you do have their undivided attention you will be reminded of how those lonely nights or the short little phone calls are worth it for this moment of complete happiness. That moment being with the person you love is the only place you want to be. You will become stronger and it will be hard at first and throughout your relationship. Those insecurities are going to surface and you will continuously doubt yourself and your relationship. That is normal, but just remind yourself of those days and that this is the life you chose and make sure it is the one you want. Nothing worth it comes easy. This will definitely take hard work, lots of communication, and trust.

Something about him. 

I love his sweet smile, gentle touch, the way his kisses touches my soul, or the loving way he looks at me.

I love seeing him light up talking about all that he wants to do, but seeing that fear as well. I want to be there to support him and be there to help him succeed because I know he can.

I love listening to him talk about his passions and seeing him get lost in it. I can’t help but smile and think man I love this man.

I love hearing him laugh and joke. Seeing him relaxed and happy warms my heart.

I love the way he cares for me and makes it known in every move he makes and every word he says.

I love when I am around him, hearing his stories, and I can see that he is the bravest and has the kindest soul. A person you just want to be around because he is a great person and makes you want to be a better person.

I love seeing that even on his hardest days he keeps moving and stays strong. He trusts in himself and I trust in him.

I love his resilience, his heart, his brilliance, his smile, his love, his passion, his ambition, the way he believes in good and does good, and everything about him. There is just something about him that makes me feel for him, want him, need him, and to always love him.

Living with anxiety…

You have that big overwhelming question of what if? What if I make the wrong decision? What if I’m not good enough?

You’re constantly questioning yourself and thinking of every single scenario of what can happen. As you been to think and to wonder you start to have that feeling of panic. You feel like you are losing control of everything around you and of yourself. But here is my thing those questions of what if this or that happens or could happen start reminding yourself of the other times were your anxiety, your fear almost stopped you from doing something before and it turned out to be the best decision of your life. If you had let that anxiety win out you would’ve missed out. You would’ve missed out on that cute date with that really cute guy or going to that party where you knew no one but you ended up becoming best friends with your lifelong best friend.

I’m not saying that it will always be easy and yes there will be times that your anxiety will win out and you will feel defeated but don’t give up. Get yourself back up and face the next day, the next situation. You’re always going to think and wonder and that panic will always be there. You just have to learn how to manage it and how to regain control over yourself and your mind.

So while you are sitting there at 2 am wondering all the things that could go wrong in your new relationship or thinking about all the what ifs; start thinking about what is going on now and the good. Try to regain control again and silence that panic of the unknown and the questioning. Remember all the things you already know because the more you think about it the more you are going to create. The more you create, the more panic you are going to feel then that is win your anxiety is going to win out. Do not let it have that power over you. Remind yourself that you are in control and are always in control.

I chose happiness.

Recently I broke up with my fiance and got into a new relationship right afterwards. I was miserable with my fiance. I cried almost every night and was just not happy. Then, I reconnected with a guy I used to talk to before my fiance, but timing was never right with us and I moved on. After reconnecting, my feelings came back or never left (not sure) and  thus making me realize even more I had no feelings for my fiance anymore. This then lead me to finalizing the decision to break things off.

After breaking up with my fiance (which I didn’t do because of the new guy but because I knew it was the right and healthy thing to do for myself), I took the chance to start this new journey. He made me believe in love again, taught me how to laugh and smile again, and how I deserve to be treated. I learned to be happy with someone again. Everyone started to notice the difference. I started to notice the difference. I am now smiling more, working to better myself, and I have someone who supports me and helps me better myself. I wrote a post about letting yourself love again and in addition to that post there is no time limit on when you can allow yourself to feel and love again.

Before I decided to give this another shot, I was hesitant. I didn’t think I deserved him or deserved the love he was ready to give me or the love that I was going to give him. This time we mutually decided that we were going to take things slow, but that we deserved this love. Everyone deserves to love and be loved; I mean truly and madly love, the love we dream about. This time around though we weren’t going to overthink and we were going to take the time to make things work. So far things have been great and we are constantly learning, but making things work just like we said we would. The plus of it all is we both are as happy as we can be. Through all the stress and problems, we both know we have each other there to support and remind each other how strong we are. This is how I wanted my relationship to be and this is how my relationship is now. I mean how could I just wait just to spare someone who made me miserable’s feelings? Maybe that is insensitive, but then like I’ve said I chose my happiness instead of repressing it like I did for the past year and a half.

But in every story that has to be more drama. I have been criticized openly and bullied about this. Here is the thing, I chose my happiness. I chose to make a choice that I know was and is best for me. Do I regret the choice I made? Not for a second and I never will. I got myself out of a toxic relationship and was it a bit soon to get into another relationship? Of course but I knew what I wanted and I wasn’t going to let it slip me by again. And I will never let anyone make me feel guilty or like I was in the wrong for choosing myself.

If you found whom you love or what makes you happy then go for it. Not everyone is going to agree with your choices or understand those choices but it is your life. You have to do what is best for you. Whether it be ending a relationship, cutting someone off, or starting something new. It is your life and your choices. Never let someone make you feel like you should’ve settled and stayed in a situation that did not benefit you. Definitely don’t let them make you feel bad for going what you want and what makes you happy. You shouldn’t have to wait to do what you want because of someone else. If that was the case then you will be waiting for a long time and that’s not fair to you.

There’s a quote from Miley Cyrus that fits this situation very well, ” At the end of the day the person that has to be happy is me!” So my advice is that it is okay to choose your happiness and yourself at times and to never let anyone make you second guess that choice.
(Yes, I chose to stay for almost 2 years in that relationship. I am a very optimistic person and I was desperately hanging on to the hope that things would change. I had to be realistic that it wasn’t going to. Even if it did, the damage was done and it was too late.)

 

Love, Love!

Lately, I’ve been seeing this quote from Liam Neeson.

It’s true. I’ve been in and out of love so many times and at some points I wanted to give up on this feeling. I hated love and wanted nothing to do with it.

But here is the catch. You feel all those things and wonder how does someone that “loves” you do that to you. How can they make you think all those things and make you want to give up on love, on the love you both once shared with each other? They aren’t supposed to do.

That love they have for you and the love you have for them is supposed to make you feel alive and like you are floating on top of the world. Every day you are with them should feel like this is your happiest day of your life. It’s something you want to experience everyday and something you want them to feel as well everyday.

When you find that person that truly loves you and you truly love them; you will definitely know that you have found love, that pure love. You will see why all those other people just didn’t feel right and why you didn’t feel complete.

That one true person, that person that you and him/her are so intoxicatingly in love with, will show you that this is how you want to be treated and this is what you want and that because you are with that person all is going to be right. This person will push you to excel and support you always. They will be honest with you and never lie. Your person that you are so in love with will make you see what fairy tales are really made of and make you believe in the good of love again.

It may take some time and you will probably get some bumps and bruises. But each time you fall, get right back up and give that guy that’s checking you out or the guy you’ve been crushing on for the past 3 years a chance. You never know, because that could be your reality Prince Charming. And if you don’t then you may be missing out and blocking your happily ever after because of the fear of all the things we associate with love instead of the one true thing and that is love itself.

Embrace the mane!

I have thick curly hair! When I say thick, I mean it has nothing on a lion’s mane!

When I was younger, my hair was not thick at all. Actually, as a child I barely had any hair. My family always made fun of me and still do to this day. They would share stories about how they would try and tape barbie doll hair to my head… yeah. (I blame them for cursing/blessing me with the mane I have today.) You would think, because of this I would LOVE the fact that I have lots of hair. Yeah, no.

I didn’t know what to do with my curls and no one else in my family had hair like mine. I just wanted easier hair and be able to do things with it without it looking a mess. I was teased about nappy hair or about my fro or that it was a mess and looked like a bird’s nest. As I grew older I tried everything to have normal, manageable hair. I straightened it almost all the time, always put it up in a bun, or put different chemicals in my hair (relaxers, keratin treatments, etc). It was damaging my hair and causing it to break off or not grow. (I am still growing these pieces back.)

Before I knew how to manage my hair!

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My hair straight and long!

After that point, I gave up. I decided I needed to find healthier alternatives to my hair and things that would actually work for me. I started using pinterest and Google to find what others were doing. After many trials and errors, I started to actually find things that worked for me.

Here’s a couple of things that worked for me (let me just say that no matter what, it will still be a mane just notttt a crazy untamed mane):

  1. LOTS OF GEL or MOUSSE! Yes, it sucks that your hair may be hard sometimes. Although, when I used it I found that no matter what my fro was going to win out, BUT I noticed that even though the mane found its way it was tamed just enough.
  2. Leave in conditioner = best friend. It’s literally my best friend. After my showers and yanking my hair with just my regular conditioner, using my leave in conditioner afterwards and not brushing through it or anything worked perfectly for me.
  3. 1 & 2 together: If I didn’t want super hard hair and a huge knotted mane then I usually use these two things together. It gives me a good mixture. Not too hard and not too soft. So my curls were tamed (semi) but still soft.
  4. Coconut Oil: Yes! After months of my mom asking me to test out using coconut oil on my hair I tried it. AND I AM IN LOVE! It has made my hair a little less frizzy and has made it so much softer. Now, I just started using it so I’m not sure what the long term result will be but my short term results is something I love. I suggest everyone with every type of hair to use it! Plus its useful for even as lotion or cooking oil. How can you go wrong with such a versatile option!
  5. THIS: it works!  :
  6. LASTLY: CONFIDENCE… I am still working on this one but still there are days that I own my curls and rock my mane! You’re a lion. You are on top of the world and fierce! Remember that! My curls are unique and beautiful, but a pain in the ass (they are like me)! 🙂
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My hair after I learned to manage it!

There are days where I hate my hair and just plain annoyed with it. I have learned though that everyone has that issue, you just have to deal and learn to fall in love with your hair. Plus I’ve learned to think of my mane like this, when its curly I’m one person and when its straight I can feel like a brand new woman. Also, it could be much worse…. I could have no hair. Its been a process and is still a process that I am learning.

But I am still learning and starting to EMBRACE THE MANE!