We don’t do ourselves, each other, our kids, anybody for that matter any help by pretending marriage is this amazing fairytale. Actually I think we do the opposite by growing up and even getting married thinking that marriage looks a certain way and fits in a certain box.

I know I came from that fairytale unrealistic expectation place and guess what my life hasn’t looked anything like what I grew up thinking it would.

Anyone who has been married for a number of years, especially who have added kids to the marriage mix will tell you marriage is not a fairytale (the ones that have the fairytales are the oddities).

I am hitting that age where life is real. Crap hits the fan. You have friends who pass away leaving families. I’ve out lived the years my mother had on this Earth. I’ve moved more times than I can count.

Through this all I have also seen the blessing of being real with people.

The lifelong friendships that span the globe that came about out of moving around which I hated at the time and now as an adult get stir crazy being one place after 4 or 5 years.

The fact that home isn’t a place, but a feeling or a group of people.

The fact that out of my experiences and hardest hours have come the perspectives that have allowed me to help countless others after the losses of their mothers. And through those real times I have found some of my closest confidants.

Life’s experiences aren’t pretty.

What colors the world and allows us to see the beauty is in the small things like Mother Earth herself and in the relationships we form that help us through each chapter.

Friends and family fill chapters in your story. But, they may not be in every chapter, because life happens and life isn’t fair – people die, people change, people break your heart, you grow apart…

BUT, who is in or not in your chapter doesn’t mean your story is done.

Open that blank page and get on with what is coming next. But don’t let the world or stereotypes tell you what your story should or would look like…let it play out without expectation. You will be happier you did.

What is that next chapter?

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