The Liebster Award

I can not be anymore excited about this … I was nominated for the Liebster Award by the amazing writer/blogger over at Reveuse!!!! Mahee please know I can not thank you enough for thinking about this little blog that could. I’m both humbled and thankful for this nomination. Your writing is both lovely as it is uplifting and I hope that you continue to inspire others the way you inspire me.

Liebster Award Image

About the Award

The Liebster is an award given to new and upcoming blogs, as nominated by fellow bloggers, in order to give exposure and foster a community of recognition and appreciation. The award was first implemented in 2011, and has been in place each year since.

The official rules for 2018 are as follows, and can be found in entirety on the blog The Global Aussie, at https://theglobalaussie.com/liebster-award-2018/

Rules — Overviews

⇒ Link to official rules blog post in your Liebster Award blog post
⇒ Answer the questions given to you (11)
⇒ Create more questions for your nominees to answer (11)
⇒ Comment on the official rules blog post with a link DIRECTLY to your Liebster Award nomination post.
⇒ Entries start 1st of Jan 2018 and ends on the 25th Dec 2018. The winner will be picked on the 31st of December.

Rules 

• Thank the person who nominated you and provide a link to their blog.

• Answer the questions you were asked.

• Share 10 random facts about yourself.

• Nominate at least 3 blogs for the award.

• Ask your nominees 10 questions and inform them of the nomination.


Facts About Me

1. I love to bake – anything from birthday cakes to cupcakes to brownies to chocolate chip / sugar cookies to flan and I also love to try new recipes – however, I will not eat my own baking creations

2. I need like to be in control 

3. I’m impatient with people that talk in circles ultimately wanting to feed me BS – honesty is key

4. I’m a stickler with time and appreciate people that arrive on time

5. I love to laugh! And appreciate good mom jokes 🙂

6. Would choose white chocolate over any other candy – is chocolate considered candy?!

7. I love a good sale!

8. My favorite color is money green … just kidding no I’m not just green!

9. Obsessed with Disney movies and can watch them on repeat without a problem … did I mention I have little ones 🙂

10. I DO NOT, I mean DO NOT like scary movies such as the Shining or movies with underwater scenes such as Jaws. I love a good funny movie such as The Hangover

Questions and My Answers 

1. Why did you start writing your blog? After going back and forth for a few years out of fear of the unknown but passionate about my own journey with Chiari 1 Malformation + Syringomyelia, I finally did it! I want to raise awareness on Chiari and only hope to connect with others living with the same illness.  

2. Do you believe in God? Yes – He’s the reason I’m here today! Yes I am weak, I have my moments where I doubt His presence in my life because of what I live with, however as today’s gospel from Matthew 28:16-20 said, ‘I am with you always, to the very end of age.’ No, I didn’t know that by heart, I had to go back and get that for you!  🙂   I underwent very risky and life changing surgeries that could have put me six feet under. I am positive I am here for a reason(s), why, I can’t quite put my finger on that but I can only hope to be humble enough to understand why one day. 

3. What’s your favorite cuisine? Thai

4. Sunrise or Sunset? Sunset 

5. Which was the happiest moment in your life? I’ll choose moments – my little one’s births. No book, no movie, not listening to others experiences, absolutely nothing can prepare you for the birth of your child. I’ve had them via cesarean  and that first cry, that first meeting between baby and mother is breath taking. I have no words and can only pray you experience it for yourself. 

6. Define yourself in one word. Dreamer 

7. What’s your favorite book? The one book that I can remember that had me wanting to read it again, is The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. I read it when I was young and I was immediately drawn to it. 

8. What’s your favorite quote? ‘You’ve got to put your past behind you’ – Timon, The Lion King. So simple, yet it’s better said than done. If achieved though, I believe it can really be the only freeing thing you can do for yourself. 

9. If you are given 10000000 cash what would you do? Cash, wow, not even a check?! Nice! Ha! OK, I’d buy that purse I’ve been eyeing, travel and eat yummy food

10. What’s the thing that you hate the most? People that complain! And whine!

11. What’s the best quality that you see in your best friend? Please don’t feel bad or sorry or anything remotely close to that, but I do not have a ‘best friend.’ Maybe I used to, say in high school, not sure. But I believe people come and go from your life for many different reasons, so to give someone a title like ‘best friend,’ personally is setting too high of expectations on one being and ultimately resulting in me being disappointed. However, a quality(s) I best admire in friends are honesty, faithful/trusting and dependability.  

Questions 

 1. Why did you start writing your blog?

2. Do you believe in God?

3. What’s your favorite cusine?

4. Sunrise or Sunset?

5. Which was the happiest moment in your life?

6. Define yourself in one word.

7. What’s your favorite book?

8. What’s your favorite quote?

9. If you are given 10000000 cash what would you do?

10. What’s the thing that you hate the most?

11. What’s the best quality that you see in your best friend?

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My Nominees 

1. Magic In The Everyday

2.Simply Chronically Ill

3. My Li’l Place

Nominees, I appreciate your love for writing and continue to admire it in every one of your posts. Enjoy!

A-

The Inside My Head Tag

the-inside-my-head-tag

I received this tag by the lovely blogger over at Discovering Your Happiness and it was so much fun to do! She writes about health, mental illness, healthy recipes and happiness, among other interesting things. Her honesty, her willingness to be so open by writing down such raw emotions has been what has captivated me to her amazing blog! She’s proving that being your true self will be what will draw people closer to you. I appreciate you and love your amazing blog Anita.

If you’re a follower of mine, I hope you have enjoyed reading along and getting to know me a little better and if you’re not, please subscribe and follow my journey along! Ana-

So, let me begin!

Rules:

° Thank & tag the person that has tagged you

° Attach the tag photo

° Answer the ‘This or That’ questions

° Tag 10-20 friends

Here we go:

° How do you feel at the moment?

Considering this is the peak of bedtime, with 6 little’s, the ‘process’ can be long and with my anxiety, it can get daunting. :: deep breaths ::

° What do you need more in my life?

Patience. Lord Almighty, I need more patience! I can feel my anxiety level rising when I feel stressed or hear people complaining.

° What would make you happy right now?

A full nights rest – 8 hours, and a vacation. Does Disney World count? We’re going to Disney World again this summer and although I love the most magical place on Earth, I  refuse to call it a vacation. But still I love it!

° What is going on in your life right now?

Let’s see, well the blog is going on. I don’t have social media so I am not scaling as fast as I’d like – remember I’m impatient 🙂  I mean how do you grow your blog without social media?! I’m still trying to figure that out without giving into the pressures of the world. Maybe later I will. Also, we just wrapped up my son’s IEP for the next school year, if you haven’t read my post on Autism you can definitely do it here. The meeting went as well as it could have gone, if you’ve been in these meetings, you know how intense they can get. No bueno for someone like myself living with anxiety. But we got over that hump and he’s all set for next year!

° What am I most grateful for? List 10 things.

My Children – Every.Single.One 🙂

My Family – For the patience and support they’ve demonstrated since my diagnosis

My Health – Even where I am at now with my health, I am grateful i have a pulse and I am alive. I’ve had multiple surgeries – too many to count, and you can read more about me here, but the surgeries due to Chiari + Syringomyelia have been the most risky – not that other surgeries weren’t. But the complexity of these two could have really ended my life. God’s got this mama here for a reason beyond my humble comprehension.

My Blog – It’s given me an outlet to be able to write down my emotions. I think not as honest as I’d like to be, but I think with time I’ll get there. I’ll be able to feel more comfortable. So far it’s been free therapy and who doesn’t like free things 🙂  It’s allowing me to meet many interesting people from all walks of life and from other places, it’s been a pleasure to read the many experiences. And in the words of my therapist, ‘misery loves company’ – and not in a bad way. But reading others not-so-pretty lives has helped me see, that I am not alone.

My Home – It provides shelter and a safe environment for myself and my family.

Food – I enjoy cooking, most days I see it as a stress reliever and have enjoyed introducing the kitchen to the children. They love to help and have come to love baking for one another.

Our Van – I never, never, ever, did I see myself in a van, much less with 6 little’s. But God had plans bigger than what I could have ever imagined for myself. I had actually written other plans for myself. God however – as always, has the last say. I am grateful for this vehicle that can house my entire family. It gives us a nice small space to travel in – near or far, to sing, to talk, to watch Peppa Pig and ultimately throw a french fry or two when they aren’t happy! 🙂

Our Strollers – Yes, you read right! They come to my rescue when my body can no longer be pushed.

E-Mail – This helps me communicate with my children’s teachers and has come in so handy when I’ve needed surgery. The ease to be able to tell them just about anything and everything with a few clicks is absolutely amazing – especially when you live with chronic pain.

iPhone Pictures – I am by no means a photographer – and you can see my Nail File Friday’s to prove my skills are lacking, however I still love taking pictures. I appreciate being able to capture moments in time to later reminisce on times past.

Flats (shoes) – With Chiari + Syringomyelia, vertigo is almost inevitable and even since having my surgeries I still have it. So, flats have really helped me still feel normal and pretty without the constant feeling like we’re all in a roller coaster ride! Eek!

° When did you experience joy this week? 

I went with one of my boys to his classmates birthday party and seeing his eyes light up brought so much joy to my heart. He was so excited to be there and I was so happy I got to be there with him.

° List a small victory/success?

With my anxiety it’s hard to be patient, I worry a lot for just about anything. I want to know what’s going on at all times. I also have agoraphobia, but booking our summer vacation is such a huge success. I do it all for my children, they motivate me to do things I otherwise would not.

° What is bothering me & Why?

I feel like I have truly not accepted my condition – you can read more about that here, because I have been thinking a lot of my past life. But at the same time, realize that my diagnosis would have been the same regardless.

° What are my priorities at the moment?

To put myself first, to do things for myself that will help improve my mental health. Also, to start getting outside more often, to start a physical regimen and to improve my physical health.

° What do I love about myself?

The love, appreciation and compassion I have towards others – especially those closest to me. I also appreciate that I’m frugal – not to be confused with being cheap. If you haven’t read my My Tips On Thrifting and if you haven’t taken advantage of the Grove Collaborative – Free Set you must! I love getting a good discount – and of course free stuff!

° Who means the world to me & why?

My little ones, they will drive me up the walls, roofs, everything! The same way they drive me crazy, they love me regardless of how I feel or how I look. I knew growing up I wanted to be a mom, I didn’t know God had 6 little one’s waiting for me, for that I am grateful.

° If I could share one message with the world, what would it be?

It seems so obvious but to some it isn’t. I would say, put your health as a priority. If you feel any kind of way, don’t hold off, schedule that appointment, go to your doctor and get checked! My life changed in a split second, I had emergency surgery and just like that my life changed forever. I ignored early signs, I didn’t tell my doctor things I assumed were not important, not a big deal. You are important, treat yourself right, get checked!

° What advise would I give my younger self? 

The breakup and heartache you will experience will not deteriorate you, you will crawl out of that black hole and you will come out of that alive. Don’t jeopardize your future, hold on, be patient, you will find someone willing and able to pick up the broken pieces that are going to be left behind.

° What lesson did I learn this week? 

‘By accepting that we cannot change the past, we can release ourselves and fully start living’ – Dr. Perry  So incredibly true. I find myself so deep in my past that I prevent myself from enjoying the present.

° If I had all the time in the world, what would I do first?

I’d sleep! I have 6 kids, what answer were you expecting?! Ha, I’d put a ‘go away’ sign and call it a day!

° What’s draining my energy?

Chronic pain and my anxiety, if I allow it to, it can get the best of me really quick.

° What does my ideal morning look like?

This is my ideal, it would be my kids waking up to their alarm, wake up, brush my teeth, help them get ready for school, say our goodbye’s and see you later’s, get the little one’s breakfast ready and get them dressed for the day.

° What does my ideal day look like?

I’m a stay at home mom, so my day consist of a lot of cartoons playing in the background while I do laundry, fold and put away clothes, clean, cook lunch, making after school snacks for kids and once the kids are home from school, I check everyone’s backpacks.

° What makes me come alive?

My children’s smile, hearing their laughter and listening to their stories.

° What/Who inspires me the most?

Anyone living with chronic pain or debilitating condition, they’re willingness to keep fighting, motivates me to keep moving forward.

° Where does my pain originate?

It’s all due to Chiari + Syringomyelia. It began there and from there other things have come up.

° What are my strengths?

Regardless of how I’m feeling, I always make time for those who need me. I’m supportive, I will try to always tell you the truth even if I know it may hurt you, I would rather tell you the truth than make you believe something that isn’t. A good friend will tell you the truth when others won’t.

° What is something I’ve always wanted but too scared to get?

This blog, it took me years to finally build up the courage and convince myself that I could do it. It’s here now!

° What is something I would love to learn?

I would love to learn more about my Korean ancestors. I grew up with unique facial features and this all came together when we realized we have Korean family members.

° Where would I want to live my ideal life?

I want to live in a simple space, somewhere out in the country, with animals, with fields and fields of grass where I can sit and watch as my children run and play, where there isn’t too much noise, where life is more simple and in need of little because we alone are enough.

° Where would you like to travel in the next 5 years?

I traveled to Canada years ago on a Pilgrimage to see the Pope. And that was fantastic, so I’d go back there. I’d go to Italy, I’d go to Jerusalem and be baptized in the Jordan River, Greece and visit all of the Disney parks around the world.

° What can I do to take better care of myself?

I would continue to go to therapy. Although it’s hard to get out of the house just for therapy, it is imperative that I take care of my mental health. Because as they say, you can’t pour from an empty cup.

° What hobbies would I like to try?

Pilates and walk more, just walk, go out for walks, get fresh air and appreciate nature more.

° When have I done something that I thought I couldn’t do?

Getting started on the blog! I’m so hard on myself and thought I wouldn’t have time for something else, that my plate was too full to put something else in it. But it’s here and I’m so glad that I finally got it started!

° At the end of my life, what do I want my legacy to be?

This one is so profound! I think I want to believe that I got to apologize to people if I ever hurt them or made them feel some kind of way. I don’t like leaving things unfinished with people. I want my kids to remember that even though I became sick at their young ages, I want to tell them that I tried, I tried every single day to be present and pushed through the pain, every single day. I put my body through surgeries that didn’t guarantee anything would improve but that I did it for them, I take medication – unwillingly, for them. Because the medicines are prescribed for me to feel semi-normal and if that’s what is offered, that’s what I’ll take. All in order to be present in their lives. And I hope my husband knows how sorry I am he got stuck with someone that ended up being so sick. How boring can it possibly get?! But that I appreciate all the sacrifices he has made.

My nominees: 

I don’t have 10-20 nominees due to the blog being relatively new  🙂

° Four Jordans

° Simply Chronically Ill

° Magic In The Everyday

° A Disney World Adventurer

° My Li’l Place

To my nominees, I apologize beforehand for the lengthy tag, but it would be so nice to get to know you through these questions. I can’t wait to read your answers and hope you have as much fun as I did doing this tag!

♥ Ana