Tomorrow

I’m nervous tomorrow is a big day for my charity Livvy’s Smile, we are holding a fun day at
SNAP’s for children with special needs and their families.

While I’m excited and love what I do I’m struck by conflicting emotions.

Obviously tomorrow Livvy will be mentioned and yes she should be as she is the inspiration behind the charity. Our memories are what keep us going hence the
gift we wish to give others.

Talking about Livvy hurts; though as much as I love sharing my beautiful courageous
daughter with the world I miss her so much. Each memory while sweet is tinged
with pain.

Though as the events before have proved the joy of seeing the smiles on the faces of the
children heal the pain in my heart. Talking to the other parents reminds me why
I what we do. They also bring me friendship and understanding.

So yes I’m nervous and filled with trepidation but I’m also filled with excitement and anticipation.

“Yesterday is but today’s memory, and tomorrow is today’s dream.

Khalil Gibran

Wish us luck!

A weird few days

Its been a weird few days. I have found myself up and down like a yo yo. I haven’t any real reason just a few things getting to me when I shouldn’t let them.

I sometimes wonder if I’m my own worst enemy. I get so passionate about things. So involved. I love with all that I am. I embrace friendship with all that I have. I try the hardest I can, to be the best that I can be.

Sometimes being this way is great, I experience life to the fullest but when things don’t go to plan or people aren’t who I thought they were I’m left deflated, devastated.

So what do I do?

Do I change who I am and hold back? Learn to be more protecting of my heart. Do I teach myself to slow down?Do I stop trusting so easily?

I don’t know.

Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.
– Dr. Seuss

Crap Happens

“Crap Happens’ is what they say,yet why is it always on me is how I feel.

I can’t breathe anymore, the pretence Is suffocating me. Trying to be normal, the fake smile is making my face ache.

‘She’s a coper that one?’ ‘always strong’ ‘there for others’ ‘great at picking up the pieces’.

‘Get lost’ is what I want to scream. I’m not coping I’m surviving and only just. Dark thoughts are like snakes slivering in to my brain.

I don’t want to be strong, I’m completely fed up of having to carry on. Curling up into a ball sounds bliss.

Am I depressed I don’t know today I may tick all the boxes tomorrow It may be different. I don’t want a label I want understanding.

I want people to see it hurts, that my soul is aching and I want that to be ok. I need time, patience and respect. Feeling down isn’t a crime. Wanting to shout ‘enough’ isn’t weakness just the mind trying to protect itself.

It’s the expectations of others that do the damage. Telling me how to be, how to move forward.

I just want to feel now!

To wake up tomorrow and be hopeful for a new day.

Maybe it will be. Today I’m not coping I’m just surviving.

A Little at a Time

Letting go isn’t easy as a parent. Our instincts shout “protect and keep safe”. Keep them close, never out of your sight.

It’s easy when they are babies they depend on you for everything and cannot get up and walk away.

As toddlers they start exploring the world gentle steps towards independence but still never really leaving your sight.

I can’t do that with a fifteen year old. I can’t demand that she stays in my sight. Never leaving my eye line. It wouldn’t work and it wouldn’t be fair.

Though being reasonable and logical were the last things on my mind yesterday as I waved my eldest off to camp for eight days. The shocking news from Norway had left me shaking. All those parents who had send their children to camp, only imagining them having a fun and a incredible time are now in shock facing the most devastating loss.

Bad things happen in life and the truth in that had me ready to cancel my daughters trip and keep her home. Keep her safe.

But I couldn’t as I saw the excitement in her face I knew I had to let her go. That I can’t hold on so tight out of fear.

My daughter is a young woman who in a few years will be heading off to university, facing the world with her usual here I am attitude. She is going to have to face bad things and to be honest she already has. But as I waved her off yesterday I was struck by her strength, that determined baby who refused to sleep is now a feisty beautiful young woman who
knows heartbreak and has survived, who knows loss and has faced it.

My heart breaks for the families of the Norwegian children. There lives will never be the same again.

But fear will not win, I will not chain my daughters up scared to let them out of my sight. I will admire their strength and courage as they face the good and the bad of this world.

As a parent I have to trust that I have raised them well and let go.

A LITTLE AT A TIME

“Only Thing We Have to Fear Is Fear Itself”: FDR’s First Inaugural Address

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Flashback Friday

I saw this over at Cafe Bebe and decided I fancied a trip down memory lane about my reasons for blogging. I was also shocked to realise that I had been a proud writer of a blog for over three years now.

Walking with Angels is my second blog. It evolved  from ‘The Heart of a Tribe’ when due to personal reasons I decided on a fresh start.  Along with the name change I guess my reasons for blogging had too.

I started my first blog simply to show that life as a parent of a child with a severe disability could be fun. Days could be cherished and laughter could be heard. Yes we had hard times but the good outweighed them by far. That being a parent of four amazing girls was a gift I was so thankful for.

Then my life got turned upside down we lost our darling daughter. The inspiration behind my words.

My Inspiration

Move forward a few months and welcome to Walking with Angels. A new blog with some new reasons to write. Survival being one of those reasons. Trying to find the joy in life again. It hasn’t been an easy road. I’ve struggled, stumbled, laughed and cried but life goes on.

Walking with Angels is my survival, my proof that life is still full of reasons to take each day and live it to the full.

Here at Walking with Angels I wear my heart on my sleeve. Sometimes I write what’s in my head and sometimes it may offend or upset someone. That is never my intention. I love the diversity of life. I embrace the differences with all have.  I never try to offer any other opinion than my own.

I am incredibly lucky in my life. I have a wonderful annoying husband. Four amazing girls and a job as a foster carer to children with special needs that I love. For all this I am forever grateful.

The journey of life is one of many challenges and struggles. It is also filled with joy, laughter and love.

That’s why I started blogging and why I carry on. I hope to have many more years of writing.

My Reasons for Joy

Trusting my own judgement

I love social networking. It’s brought out a side of me I didn’t know I had. Or if the truth be known I had lost under the weight of life.

I love the way I get to chat to random people. Who without the network sites I would have never come across. Separated by distance, culture and life.

My mom used to say you could leave me in a room of strangers and in half an hour I would have learned their life stories.

I love learning about others, meeting new people.

Yet the last few weeks the joy has been slipping away. I have found myself being caught up in judgements, arguments, dislikes etc etc.

I feel like I’m back at school hearing people saying “don’t talk to her”or “he’s not nice or “guess what they did “.

I hate it with a vengeance.

Life is so diverse that we are going to come across people who we don’t agree with. Who we won’t like and you know what that’s ok. But everybody deserved respect. To openly criticise someone’s way of life actually says more about you as a person than it does about them.

My grandad once told me that the best thing I could ever do is “remember there are always two sides to a story”. He also said that maybe both sides won’t actually concern me.

You know what he is right.

I believe social networking is creating paranoia in the world. People are sure that certain tweets, status updates are about them. I know I have felt this way to. Maybe they are but they is always a good chance they are not. The reality is does it actually matter.

If people like you they will seek out your friendship, if people don’t like you then fair enough they won’t. The truth is it’s not the end of the world.

I’m taking a step back and putting my social networking into perspective.

I love it and always will. But I am
not going to listen to the others opinions on others I’m going to trust my own judgement. Maybe I will lose friends, followers but at least I know I have shown the respect I wish for myself.

My hope is that in doing this I will find my joy again.

Business Mums Unite Conference and Exhibition

I’m so excited I have been given the opportunity to attend the Business Mums Unite Conference and Exhibition being held at The Albert Hall Conference centre in Nottingham on the 19th October.

This is going to be a great day, it’s the first of what they hope will become an annual event that brings together mums in business and those who hope to be. It will be a chance to network and learn from each other, I can’t wait.

Here at Walking with Angels I am still quite a novice in the world of blogging but I am enjoying the readership I have and am so grateful to see it increasing as it is. I also have some exciting plans for the future so this conference will be so informative for me. I’m really looking forward to the workshops and hearing the guest speakers.

Elaine Hanzak  is the keynote speaker

Elaine Hanzak-Gott is a teacher by profession but after suffering from an extreme illness after the birth of her son, she shared her story through her book ‘Eyes without Sparkle – a journey through postnatal illness’ (Radcliffe, 2005). Since then she has spoken at events
worldwide, including to the European Parliament and at the prestigious Marce Society conference in both the UK and Australia. She has appeared on national television such as BBC Breakfast and is regularly featured in the media. Elaine is trustee for the Joe (Joanne) Bingley Foundation set up in memory of a new mother who took her own life. As a now renowned ‘Expert by Experience’ she is one of the named Greatvine experts and as a Prima Mother and Baby Magazine consultant. She challenges the stereotypical view that depression is a weakness and offers suggestions to us all to promote positive mental health.

Along with Dragons den survivor Naomi Timperley

“Dragons’ Den survivor & successful Manchester businesswoman Naomi Timperley is the
UKDirector of Baby Loves Disco a national events company. Having used word of mouth, grassroots marketing and PR to spread the word about Baby Loves Disco she is an advocate of these mediums of marketing a small business. Having
turned down an offer from Deborah Meaden on Dragons’ Den she has enjoyed huge
success in her own right since appearing on the show & is now a speaker, mentor, Business advisor for SIFE at Salford University & a volunteer for Young Enterprise NW. Naomi is also a Social Media trainer with Social Media Boom launching in March 2011.”

With workshops from Laura Morris, Debbie O Conner, Amanda Farren, and Starfish
accounting.

The conference is set to be an amazing event and you have an opportunity to be part
of it.

Check it out on twitter at @Scandc

Facebook – http://www.facebook.com/home.php?ref=hp#!/pages/Business-Mums-Unite-Conference-and-Exhibition/162350760496576

 Websitewww.businessmumsunite.co.uk

 Blogwww.businessmumsunite/blogspot.com

There is also opportunities for advertising £30, delegate places (with lunch and a free goodie bag) £65, trade strands including a delegate place and advertising package £150 and a range of sponsorships too.

All I can say is that I’m grateful for the chance to attend and hope to see you all there. Go book your place now.

An Evening I will Cherish

How do I describe Sunday night. Exhilarating, exciting, amazing, incredible are all good
words but they don’t seem to come close to how I felt when Kennedy and I got to meet Amy Grant.

Let’s first roll back a few years, when I lost Livvy I was send one of Amy’s songs by a dear
friend. It was supposed to just bring me some encouragement. It did far more than that, it helped me survive. it became the song that I played over and over, the lyrics reminding me that I wasn’t alone that God was there to share my pain, to let myself lean on him, to trust him.

So as you can see getting the chance to actually meet Amy Grant last night blew me away.
The emotions overwhelmed and I actually ended up crying on her shoulder. Poor Kennedy finished my story while Amy just hugged me. Have I mentioned what an amazing women she was.

The whole evening was a blessing for me and Kennedy. The tickets were brought by someone who I have the honour to call a friend. A gesture so out of the blue I still get a radiant glow just thinking about how blessed I am to have such incredible loving people in my life

This same dear friend tweeted me Sunday afternoon to ring her ASAP. My heart was in my
mouth, had the concert been cancelled, was there a problem? No problem just a beautiful announcement, my dear friend had arranged for Kennedy and I to actually meet Amy. That’s right we met Amy Grant woo hoo. It didn’t stop there either, my friend told me to wait for a call from Tim Jupp that’s right Tim from Delirious, Tim the incredible brains, energy behind the big church day out. I was speechless. Anybody looking at Kennedy and I at the M1 junction services yesterday may have wondered why we were just holding each other crying.
This is why, we were so blessed.

Move forward a few hours and following a stressful journey driving through the centre of
London (remind me I need a new Sat Nav).

We were there shaking hands with Tim receiving our special badges to go meet Amy Grant.
Tim then disappeared before we managed to get a photograph together but I just want to say thank you Tim for helping arrange this for us.

As Kennedy and I stood in that line waiting to see Amy I could feel my emotions bubbling
inside of me. How honoured did I feel that i was actually going to meet and thank this incredible artist for her music.

Amy did not disappoint us; she was so warm, caring and genuine. She hugged us both listened to my story and hugged me again. It was five minutes that will last a lifetime
for me.

Her concert was in incredible Amy’s voice is as pure live as it on her CDs; you can hear the emotional in her songs. We were treated to old songs and new songs, one that I’m waiting impatiently to be recorded as I loved it so much.

The show was opened by a gospel band IDMC, normally I confess opening bands frustrate me, I’m just too impatient waiting to see the artist I’ve come to watch, yet I loved this band, and their combined voices blew me away. We brought their CD and are sure it will be played often.

The whole evening was wonderful, it was an unplugged set, no fancy lights, costumes, effects just Amy her incredible band and their God gifted voices.

I didn’t want it to end.

I phoned my husband after the concert my words were, “it was a night that will live
in my heart forever”.

To some it was a mere concert, to me it was so much more.

Elizabeth thank you so for your gift, you blessed me more than you know.

Before I go I would like to tell you about the reason Amy was performing last night, she
was their supporting and promoting the incredible work done by Operation
Mobilisation
and Compassion International.

I have more to write on these charities but for now I want to leave you with this
song.  The song that was a gift that became my salvation. Carry You

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