Change will be a good thing.

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We are living in some really scary times. I have been looking for work and haven’t been able to get a job in some time. My family and I are struggling financially and I just had back surgery for the second time in hopes to help with my back pain and nerve issues. I still haven’t got the pain under control but the nerve issues are at-least manageable. My granddaughter is still in foster care and DHS/CPS are getting away with keeping my son from seeing/speaking to her in almost a year now. His court appointed lawyer isn’t helping and all I want more than anything is to help him get a decent lawyer but I can’t because I can’t even get a job right now. It’s frustrating too because I have a computer degree and one semester short of an Associates in Gen Studies, in debt up to my eyeballs and still can’t get the promise of a good job. When does the heartache ever end? Were living in very difficult and depressing times how can anyone have hope for a brighter future when were in the middle of a pandemic, more people are passing every day and we have to somehow put on a brave face and somehow still remain hopeful for CHANGE!!! I believe that GOD exists and not everyone does. If it weren’t for my faith I don’t know where I would be today. I have had a very difficult life to say the least and I can’t ever find some peace. I want to be able to do so much more but feel like I am limited every waking moment of my life and ask myself…is this it????? There has to be more to life than THIS!!! RIGHT???!!! I can only pray that God has a plan for my life and each and every person out there that feels the same way that I do. That’s my hope every day when I feel hopeless I have to remember he is in control not I. We are living in unknown waters that we’ve never seen before and it’s scary but at some point I know that things were going through now will be nothing more than a memory of a time of CHANGE for all of us. I can’t help but feel like this change will be a good thing and it’s also all part of Gods plan. Just as were living in the unknown we also DO NOT know what his plans are for our future. With that being said….I did not want to vote this year. It was just too much for me to handle and so I left it in Gods hands and asked that the best person win the election to run this country and I have enough faith to believe that God also has a plan for our country in the way it should go so I will remain hopeful and trusting in him as long as I am alive. In the end that’s all we can do is trust he will work it all out. Stay safe and blessed.

Love yourself more <3

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These are some really scary times that were living in. It’s understandable to question everything we do during this time but at the same time we still need to try and live life the best we can during this time. Don’t shut others out when their trying to help. Take precautions but always know that we weren’t meant to live this life alone. It’s a good thing to lean on others ESPECIALLY during trying and difficult times. I think that there are seriously wayyy too many people with a God complex. Too many people want to be better than everyone else and for what? Does it really matter? I don’t have anything to prove to anyone but myself.

I have NEVER been a follower and I guess I don’t understand when other people are. They just allow someone to stray them away like lost sheep. Have we all become the lost sheep during the epidemic just for the purpose of feeling in control? Some of the best things in life are UNEXPECTED. Its always scary to enter into the unknown but guess what? We are NEVER really alone. I know that not everyone believes in God or a higher being but in my world I can’t see how!! There is so much proof of his goodness and what he’s capable of if we just believe or try to believe in him.

HIS beauty and goodness is all around us. We don’t always see the beauty in everything but it’s there if we choose to look. It’s so hard to see it in others and in the mundane of life but it’s also there if we choose to look. I have gifts just like everyone else that need to be seen and for so very long I have felt like I needed to do for others and not take care of my own needs/wants. This is the year that I am taking back my life and have decided to focus more on me and what makes me happy and share more of who I am with the world and my writing.

I used to be afraid to show what I am capable of for fear of rejection and I think it stems from feeling not good enough. My entire life I have been compared to other people in my family and if I didn’t live up to those expectations than I was less of a person and treated differently. I am also the baby in my family so somehow there is a stigma that I must not know very much and what I do know is wrong and that I don’t know how to make good choices and decisions about ANYTHING. Well it has taken me a very very very long time to realize that NONE of that is TRUE. I am who GOD made me to be and that’s never going to change. Others can either choose to except me for who I am or kick rocks.

What I have also come to realize is that not everyone is going to like me and that’s okay too. I guess for so long I thought I needed people to like me or that somehow, their approval of my worth was important. But I am in a better place now where I realize it doesn’t matter. When you have believed something your entire life about who “others” expect you to be and you try so hard to live up to; that realization can be very stressful and depressing. When you realize you don’t need others approval to LOVE yourself, that’s such a HUGE release.

What SEEMS so easy to some, might not be so easy for others. We weren’t all made to be the same and that’s a awesome thing to realize. BE YOU and don’t be afraid to be the BEST YOU that you can be. If I could tell one person that has gone through what I have, something that could change their perspective and life it would be this…you are special and were made and born that way. Don’t ever change just because someone else’s view of who they think YOU should be doesn’t live up to their standards, well….it doesn’t have to.

peace and love ❤ Lori 🙂

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What time are we living in?

I was just sitting here thinking about this and it weighs heavy on my mind and heart today. What time are we living in right now? I have been trying to write and get my book out there BEFORE the Covid-19 but I wasn’t really taking it as seriously as I should. But now that were on lock down and all the things there are to do are read, write and whatever we can do on social media as there is so much worry and concern to go out into public and risk getting sick. It’s just better to stay in and not be at risk. Is this a good time to write that book and have the possiblity of it getting published now that more people are likely to read it? What direction is the publishing industry going? With everything being unknown about the way things are moving forward, I can’t help but wonder what next? What is after all of this and will it ever go back or be the same?

I know I am not the only one thinking about these things. But I just wonder what are all of my fellow writers out there thinking about the times were living in and how it affects us as writers? I also have tried to start V-LOGGING. I am interested in trying to get my knowledge and views out there but I have had a lot of apprehensive feelings and not knowing what the future holds.

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UIA/Unemployment in America 2020

First of all, its really heart breaking for me to even write this because were living in a crisis we didn’t anticipate falling into but here we are, we all must learn how to adapt and its scary and very stressful. I have come across all kinds of emotions whenever I go out during this epidemic were living in. Some lady cut me off after seeing someone else cutting me off and when I went to block her from it she goes around me at the light wayyyy on the other side and says to me “Do you have a problem”? WOW, no way you just said that to me” right? Is what I was thinking lol?! I said “you know what, get your crazy ass on down the road I don’t have time for this today”. Then there are the people I have seen such as the cashier at Menards. She tells me how “the hot weather just came on all of a sudden and she didn’t have an air conditioner for her ten month old child. She was hoping they didn’t sell out of the last one on sale before she had a chance to get one after work”. I wanted to go right back there and buy her one but I am struggling on unemployment myself trying to figure out how to get through this pandemic and back to work eventually just like everyone else.

Now here comes what I really wanted to talk to you about today is my unemployment YIKES!! I spent the day once before trying to contact them after applying and getting denied. I didn’t have income for 2019 from having back surgery and being off. The only income I had was from 2018. I had to qualify for the pandemic unemployment assistance that is also available. Now that I have, this is my second week of trying to claim benefits and it’s been crazy. I keep getting my payments delayed because it wants me to claim benefits that I didn’t have in 2019 and when trying to get someone on the phone to speak to them about it, has also been just as crazy. So the last time I spent an entire day from the time I got up, until the time they closed at like five, calling and re-calling. I never did get a-hold of anyone on the phone or on their online service. The next day I went to check my bank account and it was already fixed so I didn’t have to spend “another” day calling and waiting all day long on the phone, thank the Lord! This seems so tedious but sad at the same time because I know how many people are out of work like me trying to get help from the pandemic. And to be honest I am still just thankful everyday when I wake up that I am still breathing and so are my family and loved ones. Some people are just taking it for granted and wanting to rush the Government to re-open against many who don’t agree it’s time or to at-least take our time, since this virus was and is so deadly.

Another day that I get to be here on earth and not taken from the virus is a blessing so I don’t take anything for granted. I just wished everyone else could take their time and enjoy the time that were given with our family and loved ones. I have had a lot of people in my life I lost that passed away and I miss them so much. As much as I want to get back to work and am tired of waiting and doing something different that what were accustom to, I also do not want to take a single day for granted. I have become so in tune with my surroundings and trying to take each and every day in like a breath of fresh air, that I think I know what my purpose here is. To enjoy life not to just get through each day of work just to get up and do it all over again and have to feel like I have something I have to prove every single day of my life to other people. I don’t have anything I have to prove. Only to myself. When I die I don’t want to have any regrets that I didn’t do every single thing I wanted to do in this life.

Coronavirus in this time

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I have a lot on my mind today as I am sure a lot of other people do as well. But for me I have far greater goals than most to reach and it’s making my life as well as my family’s much more difficult to say the least. See the end of February my granddaughter was taken from my care while my son was finishing out serving his time for probation violations which total time was only a month and a half. CPS came to the place I was staying after I was the one that partly had made the report. They came after having to speak to her therapist that she used to have about her telling me my son had been touching her.

My granddaughter was in an abusive and neglectful home with her mother in 2016. Myself and my son had to pick up and relocate to another city to get all of his rights to her as well as fight to get custody. In that time she was in her mothers care, she was molested by a guy her mom dated that she called daddy. Her mom began coaching her and covering up the trauma after my son got custody. Why in the hell would someone try and cover for a child molester you ask? Because her mom is a drug addict and will do anything to make sure my son doesn’t have custody either.

After my son went to jail, I had power of atty for my granddaughter now knowing however that it wasn’t going to be enough for CPS to not take her from me at the chance they could. When my granddaughter told me that her dad was touching her I thought she meant my son. Then when her story changed a couple of days later I realized it was the guy she used to call daddy and her mom had been coaching her after a brief time she stayed with my son before he went to jail….(can you say STUPID?!) My son was trying to give her mother another chance….but she used it all against him to get my granddaughter taken away. Now my granddaughter is in foster care. Her mother even told my son she wanted her in foster care so that she didn’t have to pay child support. I don’t really know how long it will be before he get’s her back but he doesn’t have the money for a decent attorney right now and well….neither do I. Which is why I couldn’t get guardianship of her either because I don’t have my own home/income since I have been out of work for a lil over a year now recovering from major back surgery. I moved away and now moving back all of this has been tearing me apart.

I am trying to get back to work, manage my pain from a failed back surgery and get my own place which will no doubt take time but this Coronavirus epidemic is making everything ten times harder to get figured. Plus I was supposedly coaching her in the past as well by taking videos of her coming out about the abuse. Even though that’s not what I call coaching her, CPS tried to make it like it was.

I can’t get into seeing a new primary care physician until July and have to go back to my old PCP if I need help with anything which is over an hour away from where I am living currently. I am trying to get work but a lot of places aren’t hiring because of the outbreak and so now I may have to end up trying to get unemployment as well as the thousands of other people across the world right now. I just wish that this didn’t happen but it’s a true EYE OPENER to what’s really been going on around us that a lot of us seem to get blinded to when living life today. Even the simplest things we take for granted are now in the forefront of our lives and making us see that there are many more important things in life. Perhaps God is doing that for a reason I don’t know. What I do know is that I won’t stop to do whatever I need to do to help get my granddaughter out of foster care. Any suggestions please leave in the comments I would really appreciate it and have a blessed day!

All good things come to us in time.

I have to write this today. In the midst of the carona virus my baby girl had her very own baby girl and she’s beautiful however, I was not able to be with her having her first child and it broke my heart 💔. I asked her to do a video of the delivery so I could see it. Of course it’s really not the same but I am thankful we have the technology today that we didnt have back then when I had my babies.

There is a surgery I’m having next week and I am a little nervous but I have faith in God that it will work out. It’s my second surgery for my crumbling back. I had a fusion and disc replacement Jan 2019 and now I am having another back surgery to remove hardware, cut out scar tissue from my last one, and bone spurs. I feel like it may be more extensive since it feels like the screws in my back are broken. Alot of times there are things that dont show up on imaging. I definitely need to have this surgery because of more nerve issues and pain. But it’s hard to know what the best decision is dealing with the covid 19. No matter what I cant NOT have it. It feels like the first surgery did not resolve my issues and hence the need for this one. I tell myself well Tiger Woods had to have four back surgeries before he won the green jacket so….

I believe all good things come to us in time as it’s always Gods timing and not our own. For all of you that get discouraged because of times were living in….just remain hopeful and trusting that God has a bigger plan for us. In time things always have a way of working themselves out. Stay safe and blessed.

Juniper Jean Neal 09-22-20

UNPLUG from time to time!

Lately I have been feeling so disconnected to everyone and everything which is an awkward feeling because I used to be one of those people who needed to know everything that was going on in the world. I have even taken a journalism course in college, with my major in getting my BA for journalism. Being in the know all of everything, I felt was necessary for that type of degree. But why did I go into that particular field of study is what I had to ask myself lately? I felt like my whole life is passing me by and I am standing there on the side line just holding up a white flag.

I am a good writer and never had it all figured out with what I would do if I ever made it that far and actually received my degree. I have been a single parent, caretaker to a sick parent, college student, and fulltime employee all at the same time. Even though I tried so hard to hang on to some little piece of myself and remain intact….I lost myself.

I moved away to help my son with his daughter, CPS has failed us and she is still in foster care and were fighting to get her back. There are alot of articles going around on social media about the corruption of CPS as my granddaughter is currently in the midst of it as well. It really breaks my heart to hear or see things about foster care on the internet, tv, or radio.

But I still love to write. I wrote a book for my granddaughter that I tried to have published last year but that didn’t work out too well and I got discouraged. I once had a creative writing teacher tell me to “write like someone else’s life depends on it” and guess what….it does. NO PRESSURE!! I am trying to find the reason’s I have not wanted to keep up with my writing…am I not good enough…things I have said to myself before that are not helpful for motivation.

A few days ago, after reading some information from my writing coach, I made the decision to make some over due changes to help me focus on my writing. The email was about another author who had to get off all social media and change her lifestyle completely in order to have the motivation it took to start writing and she’s published 17 books. So I made the decision I was going to do the same things and start making some personal changes to focus more on my writing.

What I have realized is that it’s a lot of self talk and motivating yourself, by unplugging from the world for a while to focus on yourself more…is that a bad thing? I think NOT!! With everything going on in the world today we all just need to take some time to just UNPLUG from time to time. The times were living in are hard to adapt to and I really came to one conclusion, that’s to take it one day at a time, try not to overwhelm yourself by all of the media and stuff going on in the world even in what’s going on in your own life.

If we take baby steps and ask ourselves what are we TRULY GRATEFUL for in this life? I am sure we will find a reason to go on and no matter what the obstacles are in life we will rise above them. So whenever your feeling disconnected from the world like I have been lately, just unplug for a little while and get your barring’s back. Sometimes it’s easy to get stuck in the unknown of the reality we live in and in order to not be so overwhelmed, we need to recognize what’s happening and just take a break to unwind a little, breathe, look around us and really embrace what we have here while we are still alive. I always say that I have one life to live and I want to make the most of it!!

Pondering thoughts

Let us not be that society anymore where we have to stress ourselves out every day just to become who we think society wants us to be….

Let us not be that society that focuses on people’s faults to a T but focuses on the highlights of what makes them unique….

Let us not be that society that determines your future for you without RE to WHO & WHAT EA & EVERYONE of us was created to be….

Let us BE THE SOCIETY that starts a movement of LOVE & COMPASSION comes first no matter your skin color, race, age or religious and political beliefs….

Let us BE THE SOCIETY that LISTENS to others without judgement…..

Let us BE THE SOCIETY that cares enough to stand up for others and against bullies….

Let us NOT be the society that wants to hurt others and shows the entire WORLD 🌏 that were mean and cold hearted and we dont even care about our own people in this country….

Let us BE THE SOCIETY that always takes ea others hand and says…it’s going to be okay….

Let us show the world we know what it means to stand WITH ea other NOT against ea other…

If you’re reading this….PLEASE SHARE 🤗😍♥️🙏

Lost in translation

Lost in translation, lost in words, lost in the mail, lost in my mind. These are the beginnings of my 2020 writing experiences so far. I finished my children’s bibliotherapy picture book at the end of 2019 and it has been quite the experience for me. I have been trying to send out query’s to over 10 agents and publisher’s houses in the hopes someone would take the interest in my book but I haven’t gotten anyone interest thus far. I am not giving up hope that it’s a good book but perhaps my query letter needs work as maybe I needed to explain the book in more detail or format the letter better.

I am very new at this so I am still learning on how to get this done in the right way to get the interests of those people that maybe interested in my book. Bought a Writers Market 2020 in the hopes it would help me and it did give me some insight and also gave me the listings of some of the agents info as well as some publisher houses. I have also anticipated the prospect of going off and publishing my book on my own on amazon but then I would need to get it animated online. My son is an excellent artist and the book is about his daughter so it was a major disappointment that he and I are no longer on speaking terms to have his help.

Last year was a horrible year full of painful experiences and relationships that I hope I don’t have to relive again. I was hoping that 2020 would start on a better foot with new healthier relationships and better prospects for the year but so far it’s not looking that way so it’s been a little depressing lately to say the least.

All I can say is that I am taking it one day at a time, keeping my head held high, trying to remain positive and keep writing and looking forward to whatever the future holds. That’s the thing about the future is that we don’t know what the future holds so we just go with the flow and hope for the best is all we can do. I truly am grateful that I have my faith in God to get me through a lot of my difficult times and keep me on the right path in my life without it I would be lost.

It is sad that a lot of people today do not have anything to believe in because I think it’s absolutely important to believe in something. The world is cold and dark full of enough pain already to not have anything else to look forward to is absolutely devastating and my hope is that I can help share my stories in the hopes to bring some light into the world one day and offer a little hope.

Thank you for reading and have a great start to 2020…be blessed! 🙂

Lil Lori<3

Pushing past the boundaries

Winters almost here and I am on the search for the perfect job since moving from the little town of Eaton Rapids, Mi to Holland, Mi. I have pondered the idea of moving south where all the good paying jobs are only I am engaged now and still have family here that make it difficult for me to leave. Why can’t all the good paying jobs like the ones I’ve found down south be available here. I did get a prospective job opportunity today a half an hour away but still as I ponder the weather of the south and the harsh winter weather coming here soon….its a tough choice to NOT want to just go.

Will I always be stuck here in Mi? I have wanted to get out for a long time now but STILL not sure when that time will come for me. Hoping to get some other work than call center jobs like I have been getting in the past. Today I submitted my information for an IT/administrative job. I have a degree; almost 2 and STILL the ONLY work people want to place me at here is in a call center. I have the degree but not the experience therefor its made it hard to get my foot in the door someplace. Down south there are alot of entry level jobs willing to train people. Well its time for me to start pushing past my boundaries and going out on my own without help even if I have to take a stack of my resumes with me and start handing them out like flyers. Thats what I am about to do.