Tuesday, January 28, 2014

grown-up bullies

Tonight I'm addressing something that is on my heart.

One of my dearest friends, who has a heart of gold, shared something with me tonight that made my heart hurt. Let me clarify...it was not the sharing, it was the content of what she shared. And I appreciate that she did. She was watching out for me. Those in my inner circle, and believe me that inner ring is a {small} circle, have always watched out for one another. We are blessed by and invested in the friendship we share and we don't take a minute of it for granted.

I refuse to give a forum to elevate hate/bashing/gossip so I will speak of this without linking the content of what she shared with me.

It amazes me that people are so small-minded to find joy in bashing others. I realize not everyone was raised with "if you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all," but boy, what a better world this would be if that were the case. I don't mean hiding behind society's ills or allowing discrimination, but I mean just plain, common courtesy for a fellow human being.

It's no wonder to me that so many children - ahem, make that "littles" - grow up to become close-minded adults who perpetuate the cycle against others, when they have the example of "grown-up bullies" as their parents.

"Haters gonna hate" or so the expression goes, but what a waste of time. You don't like what you see on my blog...move on! Find something more your taste.

  • If humiliating your children in social media is being "real", then I don't want to ever be real.
  • If putting down your husband is seeming "authentic", then I don't want to be authentic.
  • If remembering the moments that capture your mama heart is "staged", then let me be a first-class actress.
  • If choosing to remember the good, forget the bad, pray for wisdom, and try-try again a "front", then let me be in the front lines of combat.

Do I make mistakes?  Who doesn't.
Do I lose my patience and yell at my children?  More times than I wish.
Do I wish to be a better wife to my husband at every stage of our lives?  Absolutely.
Do I second-guess myself and the parenting decisions we make?  At times.
Do I pray for God to equip me with "wisdom for the journey"?  Every.single.day.  
Do I thank God that His grace and mercy are new every day?  Without fail.

My husband sent these to me at work this morning. It made my day. It was completely unexpected and put the biggest smile on my face, and a couple of tears in my eyes too. Tears that I'm sure other mothers of little children and wives can relate to...tears of "my work means something to those I love" and "they can see past my imperfections to the love in my heart". Everyone needs that reminder from time to time. This business of raising littles and being a good spouse to your life partner is at times so exhausting, rewarding - absolutely, but exhausting at times - you betcha!
I think it is no coincidence that I received these beautiful flowers at work today, and the "bad news" this evening. Almost like God sent me a lifeline long before the ship hit rocky waves. And yes, there I go finding "miracles" in "boring, everyday stuff". I'd rather look for the rainbows than wither in the rain.

"As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people alive."
Genesis 50:20
Photobucket

50 comments:

Em said...

I know the things you probably tell your daughter, and remember they stand true for you, too. God doesn't make mistakes, you are exactly the way He wants you. And we love you, too :)

Jessica said...

Thank you for the encouragement, Em! And thank you for the pin you forwarded me - it made me smile :)

Jessica said...

Thank you for the encouragement, Em! And thank you for the pin you forwarded me - it made me smile :)

Julia Sertich said...

Jessica, I am a long-time reader and though I rarely comment, your entry hit home with me. I am sorry to hear of your trials this week; do know there are plenty of people in your corner of the Internet who love your blog and what you do.

In The Happiness Project, author Gretchen Rubin invites us to act the way [we] want to feel. You are steps ahead, my dear.... based on your beautiful blog, you act the way you ALREADY feel, and most importantly, are passing these lessons on to your littles. If only more people could lead by such a simple and important example.

Capture Our Lives said...

Jessica,

Clearly if someone is reading *your* posts on *your* sites/social media, then they are drawn to experience the life you've created in some way. Talk like this is always derived at some capacity from someone's own insecurities. You are so brave to share your life as a philanthropic, working mother, who strives to see and create good in a world that can be difficult. You have talked about heavy topics like weight loss, finances, cancer, abuse... How REAL can it get?! You are a role model. Period. I thank you and consider myself inspired by you on a regular basis. Keep being YOU. In society's approval ratings, there is no person that would have a 100%. They can just grow up and move along...

Colleen/And Baby Makes Five said...

Life is difficult enough. Find and spread joy wherever and however you can. Be true to yourself and love those that love you, just as you are. Concentrate on them and let that be your answer to the bullies, gossips, and naysayers. Their behavior is a reflection of them, not you.

Cupcakes and Lemonade said...

I have to agree with what everyone here has said. Though we have never met, I feel like I know you. Not just because we are mommies of littles and we love to plan fun parties and make memories everyday with them, but because your blog is real. You have shared not only your fun times with your kiddos, but your heartaches, your struggles and your triumphs. It is a choice to read your blog and if someone doesn't agree with or love what you are writing, then I have to pray that they will just move on and leave the nasty comments to themselves. Keep writing and doing what you do, we love it!

Kelly said...

Don't waste your time worrying about those people or let them hurt your heart. Seriously, they have nothing better to do than look at blogs they don't like and then take the time to post about them somewhere?Proverbs 25:22

Jenni said...

I choose to follow & read your blog BECAUSE of its uplifting & positive content. It makes my heart sad for the ugly people who seem to have a problem with a positive outlook on life. They're the ones who are truly hurting. "Hurt people hurt people." B/c of your awesome attitude/outlook, you will be over this is no time, & b/c these people are hurting, they will just find a new victim.
Of course, no one's life is perfect! But that's where we ALL get the ChOICE to dwell in the bad stuff, or be an overcomer.
You inspire me to celebrate every day. They are gifts & opportunities. You just keep doing you! Thankful for you & your blog!

Mere said...

I'm sorry that you're experiencing this. I think your blog is delightful and I look forward to your posts. I think your positive outlook on life and your reliance on God are inspiring and are wonderful things to model for your children. I appreciate those traits in you and your blog. Negativity and hatefulness is such a waste of time and energy, and you clearly have your priorities straight. :) Sending you good vibes and prayers for a more peaceful week ahead.

Mrs. Cozy Home said...

Great minds exchange ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.

Keep making magic for your family. They adore you, you are a spectacular mamma, and that is absolutely the only thing that matters.

Eleanor said...

First of all, I.LOVE.YOUR.BLOG. I've never met you, but I adore your perspective on life. I truly think that you inspire other mommies. You certainly inspire me. I've been in a situation similar to yours in the past year over my teensy tiny blog that only my family and friends read. Around that same time, I read another blogger's post about how the key to pleasing everyone is not to breathe. Ha! I can only imagine that your blog picks at the insecurities of "the bullies." How does you posting about your children and your life offend them? Maybe it's easier for them to pick apart your blog posts rather than examining their own lives. I blog, so I know it doesn't paint a whole picture of my life, just like I know your blog doesn't paint a whole picture of your life. We're documenting our memories and perspectives, and if someone doesn't like it, they don't have to read about it. Blog for the people that love your blog exactly the way it is, like me! :)

Eleanor said...

Oh, and yourself. Ha!

Kelli said...

Jessica I have read your blog for years and because of it I started my own blog. Thank you for that! You love your beautiful family with all your heart and it shows...you are real and talk about both the bad and the good. Your blog is real. i feel your blog like mine is a scrapbook for your kids...why stage things or talk bad about your family. Mod you want your kids to read that one day.
Keep doing what you are doing, praying for you!

Lori Beth said...

I'm sorry for the grown-up bullying you were dealt this week. :( It really is sad that others feel the need to belittle or "hate". Let me just say, from this rainstorm you so elegantly found the rainbow. :) Very well spoken/written my blogger friend. :) Truth, love, and kindness flow through your blog(and I'm sure you)even about the ugly stuff others say. I know words hurt and it's hard to shake them off somethings, but you will pray God works to undo the hurt and pray for the "haters" that they find the Joy that only those who know the Lord have. :) I haven't commented in awhile, but while I am... way to go on the weight loss too!! YOU look awesome! Keep spreading the JOY and Love! :))

melanie said...

I've never posted on your blog, but read it often. I love that you look for the good, the fun, the sweet things in life. I have a lot of trials in my life, as I know EVERYONE does. How nice to take a break from lifes hurdles to ooh and aah over a fun party you threw or a fun holiday traditions. I'll tell you what I've told my own children their entire childhood (now they are college students), people who say bad things about you are usually JEALOUS. Keep your chin up, you're awesome!
Melanie

melanie said...

I've never posted on your blog, but read it often. I love that you look for the good, the fun, the sweet things in life. I have a lot of trials in my life, as I know EVERYONE does. How nice to take a break from lifes hurdles to ooh and aah over a fun party you threw or a fun holiday traditions. I'll tell you what I've told my own children their entire childhood (now they are college students), people who say bad things about you are usually JEALOUS. Keep your chin up, you're awesome!
Melanie

Angel said...

I am sorry that your heart was hurt. After reading your blog over the last year I've come to know that you are very caring and heartfelt person. That's what I love about your blog is that you are so authentic. Through your blog you've inspired me to do so many wonderful positive things in my life. Thank you. You are amazing to so many people. Keep shining on sister!!

The Moon & Me said...

So sorry!!!
I have loved your blog even before I had my first little. It made my day when I could order his birthday hat from you. I'm so sorry for your hurt. I did find you on IG...I'm way too excited!

sashagirl said...

Jessica, I have been reading your blog now for about 3 years. I found you through Kelly's Korner's Blog. I look forward to your post! I can tell that you have a very loving heart and are so kind, and like you said, it's so sad that not all parents raise their children with values and morals. I, too was taught from a very early age that "If you don't have anything nice to say, then say nothing at all!" I raised my own 2 children with this rule and they are now raising my 2 little granddaughter's with this rule! I'm sorry someone's mean words hurt you, from getting to know you and your beautiful family through your blog over the last 3 years or so, it just has to be jealousy that made someone be so mean to/about you. Keep doing what you are doing, we love getting glimpses of your precious littles and feel honored that you choose to share such special parts of your life with us. Sending love and (((hugs))) your way sweet lady!

Krista @ Goodwill Glam said...

Jessica,
I am a long time reader of your blog. I rarely comment. I'm not sure if I ever have. I wanted to tonight to let you know that you are doing a beautiful job raising your littles. You've been through some amazingly tough things and yet, you choose to still see all the sunshine. That is a great example of a faith filled life if ever there was one!

Blessings,
Krista
www.goodwillglam.com

Heather L. said...

Jessica, I can't imagine who would ever want to criticize you or your blog. You have been such an encouragement to me over the years, and I am proud to call you my friend! You see so much ugliness at your job yet you find so much beauty in life. Keep doing what you're doing! Love you!!!

Lulu said...

Please ignore any silly and mean people. There are plenty out here who LOVE what you do. You can't please everybody, so just please yourself and even feel sad for them that they get to feel better by spreading hate and negativity. What a poor way to live life. Don't be tempted to change a thing about your blog just to please such sad negative people because you STILL won't please them anyway - they don't want to be pleased. I love reading about your crafts and parties and trips and find a lot of ideas and inspirations here.

Queen of Good Intentions said...

I too much to say than this comment box would ever allow. I hesitate to comment just now because I don't have time to put all my thoughts together clearly, but totally don't want to wait to encourage you. You know I have been there too. I also know you didn't post that for us to encourage you, but to stop a bully. You are a totally strong lady. You know I adore your posts! I love how you always encourage me to keep looking at the bright side. Today I have learned how to strongly and wisely put an end to a negative nellie's bulling right away. WAY TO GO!!! I needed to hear all that to stop bullies that always come up. I still think often of what you told me- If your heart is right then keep on keeping on!Keep showing us how to love our family and look for the bright side! You encourage me!!

Sue said...

You have exactly the right attitude! People who have the need to say hurtful things are lacking something very essential in themselves. It's sad really, except for the the fact that they in turn are teaching their children the same things.
Keep on doing what you are doing ~ your blog is beautiful!

tricia couffer said...

Awwww, i love your blog and i don't know you personally. I think everyone has struggles and difficulties and choosing to focus on the positive will only help keep a good attitude through the hard times. we've been doing the one thousand gifts Bible study at work and its all about focusing on the positive, being thankful for what we have, good and bad. Anyway, keep blogging like you do for your true fans! I would love to be in your circle of friends, you have such fun and cute ideas!

tricia couffer said...

Awwww, i love your blog and i don't know you personally. I think everyone has struggles and difficulties and choosing to focus on the positive will only help keep a good attitude through the hard times. we've been doing the one thousand gifts Bible study at work and its all about focusing on the positive, being thankful for what we have, good and bad. Anyway, keep blogging like you do for your true fans! I would love to be in your circle of friends, you have such fun and cute ideas!

tricia couffer said...

Awwww, i love your blog and i don't know you personally. I think everyone has struggles and difficulties and choosing to focus on the positive will only help keep a good attitude through the hard times. we've been doing the one thousand gifts Bible study at work and its all about focusing on the positive, being thankful for what we have, good and bad. Anyway, keep blogging like you do for your true fans! I would love to be in your circle of friends, you have such fun and cute ideas!

tricia couffer said...

Awwww, i love your blog and i don't know you personally. I think everyone has struggles and difficulties and choosing to focus on the positive will only help keep a good attitude through the hard times. we've been doing the one thousand gifts Bible study at work and its all about focusing on the positive, being thankful for what we have, good and bad. Anyway, keep blogging like you do for your true fans! I would love to be in your circle of friends, you have such fun and cute ideas!

tricia couffer said...

Awwww, i love your blog and i don't know you personally. I think everyone has struggles and difficulties and choosing to focus on the positive will only help keep a good attitude through the hard times. we've been doing the one thousand gifts Bible study at work and its all about focusing on the positive, being thankful for what we have, good and bad. Anyway, keep blogging like you do for your true fans! I would love to be in your circle of friends, you have such fun and cute ideas!

tricia couffer said...

Awwww, i love your blog and i don't know you personally. I think everyone has struggles and difficulties and choosing to focus on the positive will only help keep a good attitude through the hard times. we've been doing the one thousand gifts Bible study at work and its all about focusing on the positive, being thankful for what we have, good and bad. Anyway, keep blogging like you do for your true fans! I would love to be in your circle of friends, you have such fun and cute ideas!

Mama Bear said...

I've only been reading for a short time, but I've found your blog to be SO inspirational, in so many ways! My children may not be little anymore but I don't think you ever stop learning as a mama (or as a wife, or daughter, or sister either!) and you have so much wisdom and joy to share, Jessica, that I feel priveliged to be able to visit here - an oasis in the ugliness that seems to darken so much of the internet now. Like you "I'd rather look for the rainbows than wither in the rain" - and there are plenty of rainbows to find here on your bright and beautiful blog, Jessica. Sending sunshine and smiles across the miles from England, Ruby xxxx

Lesley said...

Jessica...Don't give anyone that is being negative another thought...it only fuels their fire. Your blog is a legacy to your children. Since you print it into books, they will one day have them to show their children and grandchildren and oh what happy memories it will bring to them...and that my friend is all that matters! You're doing this for them and if you inspire someone along the way, and trust me you do, that is a bonus. If you posted pictures showing a dirty house or fighting kids, those haters would bash you for that so see you can't make everyone happy so don't try. As long as the people that matter to you are happy that's all anyone can ask for. Plus have you seen your counter for your blog?!?!! I'd say you're doing something right!! God Bless!! (((HUGS)))

CourtneyG said...

Its all about jealousy :)

Mariah Engel said...

Your blog is my go to when I'm needing inspiration to be creative, having a crappy day with my kids and needing something to remind me to appreciate my kids just as they are or just a fun read. You clearly pour all of yourself into being a fabulous mother and person and I find that inspirational.

Unknown said...

I just want to share that I understand how it feels to be on the receiving end of this type of ugliness. I'm a very private person, but I have a facebook page for my business where I post beautiful images, thoughts, and generally try to "share the love". I have thousands of active followers and am so grateful for the loving community that has supported me and my work. However, I have to be diligent to remove ugly comments daily. At first I was hurt, then I was amazed at how dark people can be (and that they waste their time and everyone else's sharing their darkness publicly), now I'm just grateful there is a "Ban and Delete" option on Facebook. All that to say, when people show you who they are BELIEVE them. Whoever sent this darkness your way has done you the great favor of showing you who they are. Now when I get nasty comments in response to my lovely, uplifting posts I dont' get hurt, I silently say a prayer of thanks that this person has shown me who they are so that I can remove them from my world. Praise God he gifted us our free will. I use mine to choose love, beauty, and joy (as it seems you do); and also to chose to remove those from my sphere that have selected ugly, unhealthy, small, mean ways. Keep shining you light sister...those who matter will bask in the glow. Much love!

Angela Alexander said...

Hi Jessica,
While we have never met, I enjoy coming her and getting a glimpse into your life. I find you very inspiring. I love seeing you and your beautiful family. I tell people about your site all the time. I've had some people say things like, "Those people are crazy for putting their kids on the computer", "You do realize they don't know you even exist?", and more. I love that you're one heck of a decorator. I've 'stolen' many of your ideas, from decorating and parties, to scriptures that seem to be meant for me. I'm a young wife and I am in awe of your heart and strive to do what you do: treat everyone with decenct and respect. Thank you for allowing us to get a glimpse of what it means to be a great wife, mother, daughter, sister, and friend. :)

kelly said...

Jess you inspire so many people please dont let those haters get you down. They dont understand our way of life and therefore must judge and put us down. Please keep on being your awrsome self. I NEED you. You inspire me and so many others. I hope you will keep showing us your life as so many out here look.forwatd to it. You are my friend even thoigh we never met.

Caley said...

I have followed your blog for a little over 3 years now. Honestly, you are the only blog I faithfully follow. I've never gotten anything from your blog except for inspiration from a Jesus loving, incredibly talented, sweet Mama and wife. The scripture in closing couldn't be more perfect. Hold your head high and keep blogging. :)

Jessica said...

I am overwhelmed with emotion reading your sweet comments. THANK YOU! I don't deserve the nice things you have said my way, but I thank you for lifting my spirits.

I think what took me by surprise was that this was a website dedicated to hating and bashing people...mostly bloggers. I had no idea such a place existed. But there was my name and a dozen hateful messages. Some of the bloggers I read and enjoy the most had hundreds of pages of "hate mail" - I just don't understand why someone would waste their time leaving such hateful comments. It is difficult for me to wrap my head around that concept, but I guess some people have a lot of ugly inside of them.

I've let it go and moved on. There's too much good in this world waiting to be revealed to us to be caught in a net of negativity.

To each and every one of you who took the time to drop me a line...my life is richer for having you in it. THANK YOU doesn't really seem adequate, but I hope you will be able to somehow feel my heart behind those two little words.

Lili said...

Querida Jessica,
No puedo creer que haya alguien en este mundo que quiera perder el precioso tiempo que Dios nos da odiando a otras personas, pero desafortunadamente asi es :(
En cuanto a mi, yo simple y sencillamente no me imagino no tener la oportunidad de leer tus actividades, tus luchas, tus triunfos, tener el privilegio de ver a tus preciosos hijos crecer, sentirte tan cerca que creer que realmente somos amigas y no nada mas en este mundo virtual. Sin embargo es muy cierto me encantan tus ideas, las cosas que compartes amo leer tu blog, he estado ahí para verte luchar por los que quieres y me siento honrada que lo pueda seguir haciendo y lo he hecho desde hace años, desde que un día buscando ideas para el festejo de Thanksgiving de mi escuela Google me llevo directo a tu blog, desde entonces he sido una lectora asidua y fiel.
Que Dios te bendiga!!!

Lili

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