knowing is half the battle

Hello my friends, it’s an ice filled night here in Kentucky and I would like to address an issue tonight.  Over the past few 10965234_10152636474022405_235609508_nmonths, I’ve learned a lot about about my relationship with God.  The closer I draw to him, my life becomes more blessed. My life is no where near perfection and I don’t want it to be.  I feel like I am exactly where God planted me and I will bloom.  The past few months have been eye opening, painful, discouraging, scary, exciting, happy, and emotional all in one big ole bag of awesome. Corey and I have been attending our church on a regular basis. Though my health continues to deteriorate, I feel stronger than ever.  Things that once mattered now seem so pointless.  My new dance company has started to take form and I’m loving every minute of it.  My returning kiddos are doing amazing and we’ve added a few new ones into the mix as well. This year is all about a transition of life and I can’t lie to you, it’s HARD.  Going from being the breadwinner of the family to housewife is nothing short of drastic.  I’m thankful that doctor appointments and school keep me occupied.  Life is much different these days, but I have chosen to be bloom where God has planted me.

I10403331_10203317233524250_5321631348010162825_n come to you tonight, to have a voice for those that won’t speak up.  In my personal health struggle, I seemingly appear “normal” on the outside as do others with autoimmune disease. What others SEE is a normal, happy go lucky gal who occasionally mentions she’s having a bad day or sometimes I have to cancel plans because I’m having a flare or worse…a trip to the emergency room.  Unfortunately, they only see about 10% of my day…IF it’s a good one.  The rest of the time is spent trying to stretch out your joints because you are stiff as a board, keeping track of medications, trying to hold food down, struggling with normal every day tasks, dealing with constant fatigue, chronic pain, and the emotional toll that it takes over you.  The depression and anxiety of living with something that is a silent killer and has no cure can be completely overwhelming.  New symptoms and ailments see to come out of no where and it can take multiple doctors and/or tests to tell you why.  

10966652_10152648103847405_239061003_nPeople start to question if you really are sick because they SEE a normal person.  These people start to slowly fade away until they just don’t call anymore because they can’t handle your emotional health roller coaster.  When this starts to happen, you honestly start to question yourself.  Am I going crazy?  Am I even sick?  When people tell you that you don’t “look” sick it can be the hardest thing to hear.  Know this my friends, sickness does not know one specific definition.  Little comments like that can be heartbreaking to someone suffering with an invisible illness.  As someone fighting autoimmune disease, we aren’t looking for sympathy.

We just want you to fight WITH us not against US.

Be Kind,

April

a293ce9f977ea2cf12a38d82732605b6

a few of my favorite bloggers

These days I’m addicted to loving life and viewing things from a whole new perspective.  I only want to be around positive and inspiring people and I try to follow bloggers with the same mindset.  I’m sharing a few of my favorite bloggers this morning and hoping you will follow them too!

For The Love of Adventure

Such Small Hands

https://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/19256013/

Photography Inspiration

Natalie Maks

https://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/45354805/

Fellow Foodie Love

Live.Love.Eat

https://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/37221070/

the best hint I could ever give you

Happy Tuesday Everyone!  Sorry I’ve been so busy and haven’t taken time out to chat.  Today’s post will hopefully light a fire out there in someone.  The best hint to achieve your goals in life is simple.  You ready?  You might not like it, but you gotta do it yourself. What am I talking about?  I’m talking about with any goal, if you want it done you have get out of your seat and make it happen.  This year is all about discovering new possibilities and the only way to achieve that is to dig deep, do the research needed, plan it out, and DO IT! Quit feeling sorry for yourself because you didn’t get the promotion, or maybe you didn’t an opportunity that you’d hoped for.  Really process WHY you didn’t get it and research what you could have done differently.  Maybe your goal is to lose weight this year.  ASK yourself if you are really doing everything you can to achieve your goal? Stop thinking in terms of IF and start thinking in terms of WHEN.  RESEARCH all of your options to achieve your goals.  Realistically PLAN out your goals. STOP thinking negatively.  Find like-minded individuals who have common goals set. Having a support team around you is wonderful, but only YOU can make your goals happen.  Keep in mind that no one owes you anything. A support team is built to motivate each other, but you have to MOTIVATE yourself and dig deep. So what’s holding you back? As my husband always tells me, “there’s nothing holding you back but wind and opportunity. Here’s your wind.”

I know you can make great things happen WHEN you want to.

Happy Tuesday Everyone!

April

10943717_10153284578423561_6516988297665351306_n

It’s OK! On To The Next

I love Free People and their blog. Everything about it is inspiring! Today I challenge yourself to let yourself move on to the next chapter in your life and quit reliving your current one. I know it’s hard. I know it’s stressful, but the more you let go, the easier it becomes. Give more, want less, and remember to breathe!

Be sure to check this blog post out from Free People today!
>http://blog.freepeople.com/2015/01/set-positive-intentions-year

Hello 2015, Let Me Reintroduce Myself

A wise man once told me that we live two lives; the life we had before and the life we started living once we realized we only live once.  I believe this to be true.  In my previous life, I was stressed out, self absorbed, overworked, underpaid, addicted to caffeine and nicotine, and my entire world revolved around dance. My life didn’t revolve around anything that actually mattered.  Now that I’ve had an awakening, my life is so much better.  I no longer ignore my body when it tells me I need a break,I listen to my husband,  I pay attention to things that matter, and surprise!  My entire world doesn’t revolve around dance.  Whew, feels good to say that out loud!  Yes, my name is April and I am a former danceaholic.  I still love dance and I always will, but it doesn’t consume my entire existence anymore.  I make time for things that actually matter.  I listen and communicate more effectively.  I do things that I love to do, but I wasn’t making time for.  I take the time to cook our meals instead of getting fast food.  I spend quality time with my husband and our fur babies.  I take the time to take care of my health.  I meditate.  I pray.  I work on my relationship with God.  I appreciate what I have and life is amazing!  IMG_0402 boys1 DSC_0665 IMG_0552 IMG_0378 IMG_0839 DSC_1032 gussy11

take a deep breathe…and exhale

I want to let go and not stress over every detail.  I have been saying my daily affirmation.  “I will not stress over things I  can not control.” We are five days into 2015 and I can already feel myself clinching up and stressing.  I’m not proud of it.  I am trying.  Today I caught myself stressing.  I could feel the stress radiating off my body.  So how do you channel that negative stress into positive energy?  You take a deep breathe, say a prayer, and exhale.  This is easier said than done, but it’s worth it.  I promise, it’s not just hot air that I am releasing.  I’m releasing negative energy.  I’m letting go of things that I can not control.

Every day it gets a little easier for me and I hope for someone out there it will for them too.  My friend today reminded me that we aren’t in control of anything except our actions.  That’s a great reminder that I think everyone needs to be reminded of.  We have to let things go and just exhale.  If we don’t, the negative will eat us alive. For those that of that are weak, we will not get stronger.  For those of us that are sick, we will not get well.  Let it go!

Forgive yourself for your mistakes, let go of things you can’t control, and take things one step at a time.

Have a blessed day,

April
10394814_882365378464802_1811531359130347621_n

And So It Begins….

0c589182f3885d7f115e8af934424c86 Welcome my new friends!

My name is April and It’s been quite a year of ups and downs for me, but I know that it has all led me to this moment in time. I look forward to writing this blog, introducing you to simple ways to take time ,and enjoy yourself.  Everyone in this world is in such a hurry that sometimes they forget just how to enjoy themselves!   I used to live that life.  I was not working to live, I was living to work. My marriage suffered because of it, my health, and it led to a live not worth living.

My health began on a downward spiral in late September/early October.  I had to have a partial hysterectomy suddenly and then my Crohn’s disease spun out of control.  Though I anticipated on being back to work within a week of surgery, it had now been five.  Bills were piling up and I spent half of my time in and out of doctors’ offices and er visits.  I sunk into a deep depression and eventually when my dance studio of six years closed, I was quite heartbroken.  I thought my entire world was ending. I thought I could no longer do what I was “born” to do.  I cried for days upon end about it.  I really did not think that life could get much worse. People were starting to doubt me, friends no longer called, and I was shrinking away into nothing.

So what did I do?  I turned to God. I got on my knees and asked the lord to please shine a light into my darkest hour.  I focused on the good in this life and positive people that uplifted me.  Though most of the negative people were already out of my life, I said “goodbye” to the rest of them as well.  From that moment forward, I was ready to live my life.  I started taking time to truly appreciate what I had in this life.  I quit making excuses for myself and started to live.

So what is 81collective? This is my vision of what God has in store for me. This is my journey with faith, love, family, do it yourself, dance, health, and cooking. So please, follow my dancers as I show them how to inspire others, let’s teach each others some new recipes, let’s try some do it yourself ideas, let’s really connect with each other, and let’s follow the words of the Lord..together!

Have a blesssed day,

April

1
alt="Blogging U." width="300" height="300" /></a>