I Honor These Men Every Day, Not Just Father’s Day

I always get a little bummed around the holidays, especially Father’s Day, because my dad is no longer here to celebrate with. Since 2011 I’ve been forced to honor him strictly through words and memories, and it’s difficult some days to do so with a smile.

Yesterday, though social media sites, I honored my dad, grandfathers, and my sister’s boyfriend. I forgot to also honor them here. So before I do anything else today, I’m going to pause to honor these great men in my life.

My dad, wow, a few times a year I’m writing about him, so most of you who follow my blogs and social media posts already know a great deal about the man who helped make me the woman that I am. He’s in the picture above, embracing my mom on their wedding day. Their parents surrounding them. Sadly, my grandparents have also transitioned to their next spiritual promotion. I don’t know why, as a child, we expect everyone to live forever beside us—a phone call away. That becomes our expectation as we grow up, and we get disappointed each and every time someone transitions.

I’m grateful for the time that I had with my dad, 25 amazing years. Not as long as I had hoped and planned, but longer than what many children get to experience. Sadly, longer than what my sister got to experience. She was just a child. She had just graduated from 5th grade and was excited about her promotion to middle school. Then the devastating blow, that has since altered her mind and life.

My sister and I have our own experiences, memories, and lessons from our time with dad. I know that her recent blessing, giving birth to her son—my amazing nephew, Logan, has also given her another blessing—Logan looks just like her, his father, and our dad! Oh my goodness there are moments when your mouth just drops open and you hear yourself saying, “he looks like dad”. Like in the picture below.

I always wonder if the visual recognition, the familiarity, brings a sense of calm to my sister. I know it fills me with a calming light that keeps me smiling.

I don’t just think about my dad on holidays. I think of him daily. I replay his words of wisdom through my mental archive, so I can be more thoughtful of the decisions that I make. It’s like, “what would dad tell me….”

I also think of two other men, and my time with them—my grandfathers.

My paternal grandfather, I called him “Papa” (use your *Spanish accent* when you say it) transitioned when I was a child. I believe I was in 5th grade. That was rough on me. I wanted to learn so much more from him. I couldn’t wait until I was older so he could teach me how to sail boats and make replicas of the ones we sailed in, and how to make the beautiful wooden clocks that he and my grandmother built a business making. I wasn’t as close to him as my maternal grandfather. But it didn’t weaken my love for him. I remember helping to clean buildings and churches with he and my grandmother, as their company had janitorial contracts that I gladly helped to fulfill. I still have a few of the clocks that he made, including one that he shaped as the continent of Africa, for one of my Godfathers, who happened to be the General Counsel for an African country. My Godfather gave me the clock as a gift after my grandfather passed. I keep it hanging on the wall in my home so that every time I see it I think of my Papa.

My maternal grandfather, my “Poppa” (or “Paw-paw”), transitioned when I was a sophomore in college. It was a day from Thanksgiving, but not a day that we initially could bring ourselves to give thanks. To us, his asthma attack was a senseless passing that could’ve been prevented. We spent years in the mental state of “shoulda, coulda, woulda” until we eventually healed to be thankful for the time that we had with him, the lessons that he taught us directly and indirectly, and the words of wisdom that he imparted. I don’t see a vegetable garden and not think of him. He worked for a Ford Motors Corporation subsidiary, so when I see and think of Ford, I think of him. He bought my mom and her two siblings Ford Mustangs when they were in high school. I grew up wanting one. I convinced my now ex-husband, to get one, and he races it in amateur competitions. He even surprised me with a trip to Utah to participate in the Ford performance racing school, where I drove and raced Mustangs for a day (he went for two days). I felt my grandfather smiling at me. I smiled back. I felt such pride, months later, telling Henry Ford III about my grandfather. Through my then husband’s perseverance, he got to meet, know, and form an alliance— and eventually a friendship, with Henry and the company. I still of course have plans of owning my own Mustang. The love of Mustangs still runs deep with my aunt, my mother’s sister, who still owns one. She’s purchased probably 5 or 6 since receiving her first one from my grandfather, her father. In that way, that is one way for her to keep a strong connection to my Poppa. I never asked her if that’s why she keeps buying them. That should make for an amazing conversation. She subscribes to this blog, so I will get an answer to that pretty soon I suspect.

Now, last but not least. My sister’s boyfriend, Shawn. The father, daddy, and hero to my amazing nephew Logan and his big sister Giavonna. I’ve witnessed Shawn light up when he’s with his children.

He gets more time with Logan, because Logan lives with him and my sister. Giavonna lives with her mom, and although when they lived closer together, we used to see Giavonna on a consistent basis, her mom has relocated and the distance and time has grown. But that doesn’t weaken Shawn’s love for his daughter, his firstborn. Nope, he just plans for those days and moments that he will have to share with her. She looks just like her daddy. A spitting image. She always called me “Tee Tee Tasha”. That little girl will always be my niece, my precious sidekick.

There’s no denying that Giavonna and Logan are Shawn’s babies. Oh my goodness that man’s genes are strong. Last night I had the pleasure of video chatting with my sister, Shawn, and Logan. I got to watch Shawn and Logan playing. Their laughter was contagious. Then I was able to take a screenshot of them face to face. Logan staring in his daddy’s eyes.

I smiled brightly watching this precious moment— that a father has with the mini versions of themselves. No man, who wants to be in the lives of their children, should be kept away from them. Children need their fathers as much as they need their mothers. There’s no substitute for a parent’s love. That DNA is the magic sauce.

I’ve been filled with so much joy watching Logan grow and watching him cling to his male hero—his daddy.

Happy Father’s Day to my dad, my grandfathers, and to the man who I’ve affectionately called my brother for a few years now. One day out of the year isn’t Father’s Day. Every day is. I love these men!

Love always,

Natasha

Copyright 2019. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

I’m Done. I Finished Writing My FIRST Book!

Do you see my face?

If you’ve ever written a book, then you know this feeling…when you’ve typed the last word, period, comma….

You poured yourself onto those pages and you’re empty, yet oh so very full.

Last night I finished typing the final words of a book that is inspired by my 9-year journey through my blog BreakingBreadWithNatasha.com and I cried. I cried tears of joy, relief, and satisfaction for putting my all into a piece of work, to glorify God and His goodness and greatness in my life (through storms and rainbows).

I’ve started several books over the past 20+ years, but this is the FIRST one that I’ve finished, and am proud of. It’s taken me almost 3 years, on and off, to reach this point. I would start writing, get discouraged, and stop. I finally reached a point where I was tired of God asking me when I was going to keep my word so that He could keep His. There’s things that I want to do and experience, but I’m holding myself back. Last night was a sweet victory.

I’m not finished. I still have to get final edits and complete a litany of steps including artwork, decide on a title, paperwork, legal stuff, marketing, etc. etc. etc. But that’s nothing, compared to having to discipline myself to sit still for hours at a time, to create something that I would want to read—and hopefully YOU too will want to read.

I will share more when I can. I just wanted to share this moment, especially with those of you who have been asking me to write this book since 2011. Thank you for the loving push!!!

~Natasha L. Foreman

Copyright 2019. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

These Two Women Helped Make it Possible for Me to Be Here

It feels awkward not having my grandmothers here to call, just because they were on my mind, and to celebrate their birthdays and holidays.

I miss trying to find just the right floral arrangement and gifts for them. I miss their smiles and laughs. I miss their side eye when I would get “beside” myself. I miss hearing them tell about their past, their hopes and dreams, and the wisdom passed to me as counsel. I miss them dearly.

Happy Mother’s Day to my maternal grandmother, Maxine B. Stephens, and my paternal grandmother, Dorrisene N. Foreman. I know that you’re here but I wish that you were HERE to hug and hold hands.

I love you Mamacine and Mama!!!!!!!!

Love you always, near and far…

~Natasha

Copyright 2019. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

For the Women Called Mom and the Ones Who Desire to Hear Those Words

I would like to wish all of the mothers of the world, a Happy Mother’s Day.

You may have birthed a child that you’re currently embracing and enjoying the day with, or one who lives far away but you’re only a phone call away from saying “I love you”.

You may have birthed a child that has transitioned, and is no longer here in the physical sense.

You may have birthed a child that you chose to give a better life than the one that you felt you could provide, so you lovingly placed them for adoption—-to bless another mother who had been waiting to share her gifts and blessings for a special soul, such as your bundle of joy.

You may have carried life within, for that life to cease, without you ever laying your eyes upon theirs.

You may have or had a desire to give birth to your own child, but through no fault of your own your body isn’t aligning with your dreams and goals—so you decided to pour your mothering love into a child whose been waiting just for you. Through your fostering or adoption, you are investing in and empowering them in ways that only a mother could.

Maybe you have been trying for years to get pregnant and now you sit and wonder, what will you do next. You know at your core that you’re a mother. Yes, you are!

To every mother described above and to every mother example that I overlooked, let me honor you today and every day.

Happy Mother’s Day Queens!

I salute you!!! 💖

Lovingly,

Natasha

Copyright 2019. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

Saluting Two Special Queens on Mother’s Day

Happy Mother’s Day to my beautiful, amazing, powerful, and gifted mother and sister.

I absolutely love having you both in my life, sharing with you, loving you and being loved by you. I’ve dedicated and will continue to dedicate my life to loving, protecting, empowering, and uplifting this gang of ours.

My heart is full. 💖

My nephew Logan brings me a joy that is indescribable. Alex, you have done and are doing a remarkable job molding and nurturing him.

I will give his daddy, Shawn, his props next month, on his extra special day 😁

Happy Mother’s Day to two amazing Queens!

I LOVE YOU BOTH SO VERY VERY VERY VERY VERY MUCH 😘

Love always,

Natasha

Copyright 2019. Natasha L. Foreman. All Rights Reserved.

When Was the Last Time You Made Yourself Laugh?

I just published a post on my SnapChat adventure the other day. Check it out. I hope it makes someone smile, laugh, and then focus on doing the same thing for themselves!

Allow Yourself to Just Be Free
Allow Yourself to Just Be Free

Love,

Natasha

Try This Today…

Fear over immediate threat is okay; it’s understandable. Anxiety is the build up of fear and frustration of the “what-ifs” and the “shoulda’s” which oftentimes are out of our control because the past we cannot revisit and fix, and the future hasn’t occurred. We’re in a state of limbo, dangling in a space that we cannot control. And many of us have control issues.

So rather than stress over this reality, which is unhealthy, we need to focus on letting go and letting things be as they are.

Breathe.

Noticing your breathing means you are aware of the now; you are present. Rest in being present. Don’t struggle straddling fences. Breathe.

“Take in each moment as it comes. Don’t focus on the time. Focus on the moment”. Those are words of wisdom from my aunt Debborah Foreman, and she’s never steered me wrong.

I would love to hear from you by the end of the day or even tomorrow with an update on how well you handled your stress today. Did it build or dissipate? Please share.

~Natasha L. Foreman
P.S. Thanks to sis Arleen for forwarding the image used that motivated me to share with all of you 💗