When I filed for divorce, I did not know how to bounce back from the money I was willing to pay to retain an attorney. All I wanted to do was have legal aid on my side to help me seek justice. I had more money in my savings than in my joint checking account. 

My faith in God and myself to pull through on top gave me enough motivation to keep my head up. I have reminded myself that there is nothing left to save for our children's sake throughout these past six months. I have given all that I needed to provide to have moved to this chapter of my life. 

Both of us have moved on in many ways with our lives. Once I decided to get myself together and stop trying to mentally re-script events that had brought me to this reality, that's when I started living. Neither one of us harvest hate in our hearts for one another. For co-parenting to truly work, we must be a team. 

Our communication with co-parenting hasn't been the best. However, we have still been making progress. Little by little, we are moving forward with effective communication. So far, we have been doing rotating weekends and sometimes a week or two at a time. Eli has been spending well-needed time with his father. As Alina weans from my breasts, she will be joining her brother to do the same. 

Coparenting has taught me a lot about placing my own emotions to the side. I can't attest to what it is teaching my children's father. I know that there's no room for poor communication or pettiness.  I did not have a father growing up, nor did I have grandparents. My children deserve to experience and make memories with their father and grandparents. I love selflessly, and it is a reassuring feeling to know that I seek joy and happiness for both of my kids.

When I first started co-parenting, I was nervous. I did not know what to expect once I sent my son with his father. No one in my immediate family co-parented, and neither my younger sister nor brother experienced it. I was, to some people overreacting to how Eli would return to me. 

Eli would be from being broken out of his routine, acting out to get his way and throwing lots of temper tantrums. His behavior was alarming me. I would desperately reach out to his father for some clarity or guidance on what I could do to calm our enraged son, but my calls often went unanswered. It was to the point that I would sit on the side of the bed in the room me and my children shared and cry. Tears would rush down my face from feeling hopeless and defeated. 

I would cry because I was frustrated and overwhelmed with parenting all around as much as I love the title of being a mother. I also love being myself too. It took some time, but I have gotten numb to our son's behavior once he is back in my care. I am not so easily triggered to call his phone and express my concerns. I have chosen to continue to do what I can to get our son back into our established routine and don't take it personally. Sometimes affirmations I remind myself daily when I have my kids are

I am a great mother with great potential.

I am not "just" a mom. 

The best thing I can do is keep going.

I will be kind to myself.

I am looking forward to him continuing to be a presence in our kids' lives. I am no longer sitting around crying in someone else's home about what is not right in my life. Instead of other people trying to find solutions to get on my feet, I create my action plans. 

When you live in a situation like mine, people will easily attempt to write you off. It takes a specific type of person to live carefree and upbeat in my matter. I encourage you to find a little time to put on a song you enjoy and dance carefree. Show up for yourself and make your happiness a daily priority. 

Going through storms can leave you feeling mentally and emotionally exhausting, but you don't have to waddle in any storm's effects. You can go through a storm and come out dry if you properly seek shelter for yourself. I seek refuge through prayer, journaling, dancing, coloring, reading, and working out. 

Discover ways to keep your head above water when you may feel as if you are drowning from your troubles. Getting down on yourself won't lift your energy to tap into your higher self. Create two plans that will be attainable to complete. Keep your mustard seed faith activated and work towards a better life. Remember to speak yourself and speak nicely to yourself because you always deserve to be handled with love and respect.

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