If there is anyone that has nailed my life in one sentence, it has to be @realtoughdad. ⁣
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If you’re looking for more laughs, head to the blog where I share my top 20 funny parenting quotes from some of my favorites on social media. ⁣⁣
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If there is anyone that...

We are always reading in our house, so we are super excited to be a #PenguinKidsPartner and share a new book by @robbtopp, called Wink. ⁣
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This hilarious and heart-wrenching story is about surviving middle-school with an unthinkable diagnosis, rare eye cancer. It’s a story of survival and finding the music, magic and laughter in life’s weirdness. ⁣
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Iyla is about half way through it and can’t put it down. She loves it because it shows that no matter what your situation, you can make the best of it! I love the message it shares. I’m always telling the girls to embrace their “weird” because it’s what makes them unique. The world would be such a boring place if we were all the same. ⁣
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If your middle-reader is looking for a new book, we highly recommend Wink from @PenguinKids. It’s available now! ⁣
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We are always reading in...

I was going to write a big ol’ something about the importance of social distancing. But instead, I’ll just give you the cliff notes version... ⁣
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If you aren’t an essential employee, or you aren’t making a run for essentials, 𝐒𝐓𝐀𝐘 𝐓𝐇𝐄 𝐅 𝐀𝐓 𝐇𝐎𝐌𝐄. ⁣
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The faster we comply, the faster this will be over. That’s all.⁣
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I was going to write...

“What if we capture the beauty of the whole world in ONE big, bold book? A book that will transport readers to countries across the globe, one bedtime story at a time?” AD: What if I told you that book exists? The Book of Cultures is a 120 page book featuring 30 illustrated stories with characters from different countries, alongside activity pages with puzzles and fun facts. With everything going on in the world, now is the time to teach your children how important it is to embrace diverse perspectives, be tolerant and compassionate and understand how to cooperate with people from all corners of the planet. We are all human beings and we all have so much to teach one another. The Book of Cultures is available for the next 15 days on Kickstarter. It’s perfect for ages 3+, and all kids at heart.  @worldwidebuddies #bookofcultures  Pre-order your copy now: www.worldwidebuddies.com  #bookclub #bookobsessed #bookpic #booksbooksbooks #booklife #bookworms #bookstoread #summerjam #summer2020 #readingisfun #readinglist #readingtime #readersofinstagram #ilovereading #instaread #teachkindness #teachthemyoung #colorsplash #streetartist #streetart #wynwoodwalls #miamiart #kickstarter #diversity #diversityandinclusion #loveoneanother #inthistogether #oneworld #beautifulcolors

“What if we capture the...

It’s funny the things that I miss most. Often when the girls achieved something big, we would take them to this little ice cream shop by our home for a treat. But we can’t do that now. Our state is under a stay home order through at least May. And while we don’t NEED to go places, I miss the freedom to be able to do so. I miss not having to disinfect every single grocery item before we can put it away. I miss impromptu trips to Target. ⁣
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But... we haven’t left the house in almost three weeks. Because, eventually we will be able to get back to normal and drive wherever we want and spend money on things we probably don’t need. And our sacrifice for a month or two, or four, is so that our brave health workers and essential employees are not put in any additional danger. And to me, that’s worth the tiny inconvenience of being asked not to leave the house. ⁣
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What do you miss most?⁣
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It’s funny the things that...

It’s not just day 1 of “distance learning,” but it’s also #nationalcrayonday so we thought it would be fun to make some art with @crayola crayons. ⁣
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This is such an easy and fun project. Just hot glue glue crayons to a canvas and melt with a blow dryer. ⁣
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𝗪𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐭𝐲𝐩𝐞 𝐨𝐟 𝐟𝐮𝐧 𝐭𝐡𝐢𝐧𝐠𝐬 𝐰𝐢𝐥𝐥 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐝𝐨 𝐰𝐢𝐭𝐡 𝐜𝐫𝐚𝐲𝐨𝐧𝐬 𝐭𝐨𝐝𝐚𝐲?⁣
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It’s not just day 1...

Want to know how the last two weeks have been? This about sums it up. ⁣⁣
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Need more reasons to giggle? Head to the blog for my top 20 funny parenting quotes. It’s linked in stories and my bio. ⁣
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Follow @loud_momma for more laughs. ⁣⁣
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Want to know how the...

My self-quarantine meal schedule consists of:⁣
breakfast⁣
morning snack⁣
almost lunch snack⁣
lunch⁣
lunch dessert⁣
afternoon snack⁣
almost dinner snack⁣
dinner⁣
dessert⁣
evening snack⁣
bedtime snack⁣
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Anyone else winning at eating these days?⁣
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#selfquarantine #selfisolation #quarantine #quarantinelife #quarantineandchill #quarantinememes #covid_19 #covıd19 #corona #coronamemes #itscoronatime #snacktime #funnymemes #funny #parentingmemes #funnymoms #parentingquotes #parenting #mommemes #memesdaily #parentinglife #momtruth #momprobs #funnyisfunny #funnyquotes #funnygirl #socialdistancing #socialdistance #snacking #sloth

My self-quarantine meal schedule consists...

Being forced to stay home for the next who knows how long, is not going to stop us from celebrating the seasons and the various holidays that keep my kids looking forward to traditions like homemade baked goods and fun little crafts. And although there seems to be a huge shortage of all-purpose flour, luckily we had enough in our pantry to create these delicious baked double chocolate chip donuts with fresh banana icing for Spring or Easter! ⁣
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Recipe is linked in stories and bio. ⁣
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What are you doing to keep busy these days?⁣
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#easterrecipes #springrecipes #donuts #donut #donutlover #bakeddonuts #chocolatecake #banana #whatsfordinner #foodstyle #foodpassion #foodography #momblogger  #foodinsta #foodielife #foodielovers #instafoods #kidfriendly #yummyyummy #foodielifestyle #deliciosa #recipeinspo #recipes #easyrecipes #recipeshare #eastercake #springiscoming #spring2020 #stayhome #stayhealthy

Being forced to stay home...

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Conquering My Fear of Movie Theaters

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5 years and 10 months.

That’s how long it’s been since I’ve walked inside of a movie theater. I didn’t realize what a big deal that was until last night. Falynn wasn’t even 2 yet. It was her first time at the theater. We watched The LEGO Movie and she sat through the entire thing and loved it. I remember thinking we had to take her to the movies again soon.

But we never brought her back. My anxiety disorder kept me home and afraid most of the time. The idea of sitting in a movie theater terrified me. I’m not even sure why.

Then, last night, we took the girls to watch a Christmas light show. I knew there was a movie theater there and I found myself googling movie times.  Frozen 2 was playing and the girls have been begging us to go see it since it opened. It was an hour and a half before the next showing. That may not seem like a big deal to most. We were in a shopping center. There was plenty to do, to pass the time. But to me, that’s an hour and a half for me to talk myself out of it. An hour and a half for me to tell myself that I won’t make it through the movie without having an anxiety attack.

I did what I normally do, I made excuses. Our puppy will be home alone longer than we anticipated. We have groceries in the car. I have work to do. We really shouldn’t spend the money.

And then 7 year old Falynn took my hand and said, “Please Mom?! I’ve never been to the movies before.”

She had, of course, but she was so small, she didn’t remember. How could I keep depriving her of things she should be experiencing? So, I said yes. We bought 5 tickets to Frozen 2 and decided to pick up some dinner. I felt great. The kids were ecstatic. Super Dad was surprised, but really excited. We were going to do this.  I was going to do this.

And then I got into the car.

The thoughts consumed me. It wasn’t even 5 minutes before I started coming up with ways I could get out of it. They could drive me home and then drive back to the theater, but they might miss the first 5-10 minutes. I could sit in the car and wait for them. I always feel safer in the car. I could try to get our money back or switch the tickets to another day, when I felt more confident in myself.

I was heading down a spiral that I couldn’t control. I know it too well. Anxiety had taken over and there was nothing I could do to stop it.

When we got back to the theater, I stalled. I didn’t want to go in until it was exactly the right time. I couldn’t handle the waiting. That’s always the worst part for me. But we wanted to make a stop at the restrooms before, so we went in a little earlier than I’d have liked to.

When we sat down, I could feel my entire body get cold. I immediately started my breathing exercises, but they didn’t seem to be working. I wanted to leave. I had to leave.

I looked over at the girls and they had the biggest smiles on their faces, especially Falynn. She kept saying how this was the best day ever and she couldn’t believe she was in the movie theater. I closed my eyes and told myself that I was NOT going to let my anxiety ruin this for her.

There were so many moments where I felt like I was going to pass out. That’s how I feel while I’m having an anxiety attack. I gave myself a couple of options because that helps me to feel more in control… I could try to lay down, I could put my head between my knees or if things got really bad, I could walk to the car. Then I practiced my breathing and tried to enjoy the show.

The anxiety was there. I felt it and it was strong, stronger than it had been in months. It wasn’t until the middle of the movie, when Falynn walked over and asked to sit on Super Dad’s lap, that things changed. She was scared. I could tell. But she looked over at me and smiled and then grabbed my hand. I’m pretty sure she was doing it to feel safer, yet, she was also calming me down at the same time.

Her little hand was like magic. My entire body relaxed.

104 minutes in the theater had come and gone. I did it. And I can’t even choose the best part. The movie was phenomenal. I got to see all three of my kids smile. It was the first time, in years, that I felt like we were a normal family, doing normal things. It made me want to do it again, really soon.

Almost 6 years. That's how long it had been since anxiety kept me from going to the movies.  Last night I was finally ready to face my fear.

XOXO
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43 Comments
  • Lyanna Soria
    December 20, 2019

    That’s amazing and brave of you. It’s wonderful that you conquered your fear and also had a great time with the family.
    Lyanna Soria recently posted Importance of Pretend Play and How to Encourage itMy Profile

  • Brittnee
    December 18, 2019

    Heather, this is amazing! It’s so amazing what we’ll do for our little ones. You go! You did that!

  • Sheri
    December 18, 2019

    I deal with anxiety and can relate a lot to this. Getting out of your comfort zone and conquering fear is awesome.

  • Heather
    December 18, 2019

    What a major accomplishment for you. Movie theaters have not felt like a safe space for me and when we do go, I’m always making seating decisions based on exits, etc.
    Heather recently posted When is the best time to visit Santa?My Profile

  • Terri Steffes
    December 18, 2019

    What a wonderful post. I used to be the same about churches, but that has gone away over time. Thanks for sharing your experience.
    Terri Steffes recently posted My Fun Foodie Gift Guide 2019My Profile

  • Anna/At Lifestyle Crossroads
    December 18, 2019

    Kids always challenge us to grow through overcoming smth! You end up doing things you never knew you were even capable of doing!
    Anna/At Lifestyle Crossroads recently posted 10 Fairy-Tale Places in Spain that are straight out of a StorybookMy Profile

  • Subhashish Roy
    December 18, 2019

    Great to hear that you were able to control your anxiety and the end result was a great time for the kids. Although difficult anxiety can be controlled if we wish to is my take away.

  • Clarice
    December 17, 2019

    So happy for you Heather and the whole family. It was very brave of you to do that for your daughters. Your love for them has overcome your anxiety and that I am so proud of you. Hugs to you, Mama! Merry Christmas to you and your family.
    Clarice recently posted How to cope with loss of a loved one?My Profile

  • Jasmine Hewitt
    December 17, 2019

    I’ve never had an anxiety problem in theaters, which is surprising. I lived in denver when the aurora attack happened.
    Jasmine Hewitt recently posted Christmas Gifts Your German Shepard Dog Will Love!My Profile

    • Heather
      December 17, 2019

      That is so scary! I’m sure that is part of my concern.

  • Tiffany La Forge-Grau
    December 17, 2019

    I used to get anxiety in dark closed place no matter where it was. Movies have been able to help me get through that more than anything though.

  • the joyous living
    December 17, 2019

    Falynn sounds like such a sweetheart. I can only imagine how tough this was for you but I am so proud of you that you could get through the movie and experience this “first” with your daughters.

  • Myrah Duque
    December 17, 2019

    Anxiety is a terrible thing and it can be triggered by the smallest things. But only one that suffers from anxiety or the family can understand. Glad on getting it a bit under control. baby steps.

  • Yeah Lifestyle
    December 17, 2019

    Well done to you on taking control of your fear, I am sure it must have been so hard for you but as a mum you found your inner strength and your kids love you even more for it.
    Yeah Lifestyle recently posted Christmas Gift Guide – Gifts for Her*My Profile

  • Catherine
    December 17, 2019

    I think we all in some form or degree struggle with anxiety and its important to acknowledge it and talk about it. You find out your are not alone which helps. I have a few people close to me who suffer from anxiety issues and it is a real problem. Your post is so inspiring and uplifting.

  • Ashley R
    December 17, 2019

    I’m so glad you conquered your fears. Anxiety is awful and can happen anywhere anytime as you know. Even over the silliest of things. You got this!

  • Claudia Krusch
    December 17, 2019

    Wow! Thank you for being brave and sharing it with us! Hope you continue to have positive experiences and enjoying life without fears! Happy Holidays!
    Claudia Krusch recently posted Give The Gift Of Making Dreams Come True This HolidayMy Profile

  • Emily
    December 17, 2019

    Wow! Thank you for being so honest and brave sharing this post. I have horrible movie theatre anxiety – I typically just avoid going, but your courage is so inspiring.

  • Stephanie Pass
    December 17, 2019

    It’s amazing how your kids can really help you overcome your fears. I”m so glad you guys were able to go to the movies together.

  • Bella at Dear Mummy Blog
    December 17, 2019

    My mummy gets anxious sometimes at the cinema as she doesn’t like to get up and go to the toilet and walk around in front of people – but then she thought whats the worse that can happen? and that she needs to stop worrying about what other people think x good luck with your journey and I hope you have many more great trips to the movies x
    Bella at Dear Mummy Blog recently posted Jack and the Beanstalk at Princes Hall, AldershotMy Profile

  • Toni
    December 17, 2019

    You are an inspiration! Thank you for sharing your story!
    Toni recently posted How to Make Divinity (candy)My Profile

  • Fiona Cambouropoulos
    December 17, 2019

    Anxiety is a horrid all consuming thing. Congratulations on getting a little of it under control, going to the theatre and cinema can be a wonderful experience Happy Christmas!
    Fiona Cambouropoulos recently posted Christmas Festive Fun at the FarmMy Profile

  • Lisa Joy Thompson
    December 17, 2019

    Thanks for sharing this and being vulnerable. Anxiety can be so crippling and debilitating. I’m so glad that you were able to make such a special memory with your family.
    Lisa Joy Thompson recently posted Mickey and Minnie Christmas Cake BallsMy Profile

  • Stefani
    December 17, 2019

    I am not that big of a fan of them either. I actually prefer the drive-end movies where I can watch the movie in my car and bring my own snacks.

  • Catalina
    December 17, 2019

    I am so sorry for what are you going through. I know that it’s not easy at all. But I am so happy for you that you did it! I am sure that you’ll do it again next time!

  • Monica Y
    December 17, 2019

    Great that you were able to start conquering your fears. It is so important to do that to be able to move on in life

  • Emily
    December 16, 2019

    Way to be brave to give your child a fun experience. There are many things about a movie theater that can really make me uncomfortable too.

  • Celebrate Woman Today
    December 16, 2019

    This is an incredible story to share, and I applaud you for that. It allows other women to acknowledge their fears and step forward with their firm foot to handle them.

  • Monica
    December 16, 2019

    Anxiety is so difficult to deal with. Way to be strong and conquer your fear!

  • katrina Kroeplin
    December 16, 2019

    i’m so glad you were able to go. different things are hard for different people. hopefully it will get easier for you as time goes by.

  • Kathy
    December 16, 2019

    That’s so great that you were able to go. I love taking my kids to the movies and it’s a great experience for them too. I know how you feel though, but with other things. I tend to make excuses sometimes too.

  • You had so much strength, I’m so happy you made it through the entire movie, hopefully it will get easier
    Paula @ I’m Busy Being Awesome recently posted Episode 21: How to Reach Your Goals No Matter WhatMy Profile

  • Sarah
    December 16, 2019

    Anxiety can be hard some days to manage. You did awesome, a true super mom! Overcoming your fears out of love for your girls. Way to go!
    Sarah recently posted Gluten and Dairy Free Slow-Cooker Breakfast Omelet CasseroleMy Profile

  • Amy
    December 16, 2019

    Wow, that is excellent that you overcame your fear. I need to do this with planes. I need to get over my anxiety.

  • Liz Mays
    December 16, 2019

    I love that you were able to do this. It’s super sweet that your daughter was unknowingly able to help you through it!

  • Stacie
    December 16, 2019

    That is fantastic! I’m so happy that you were able to go to the movies. Our littles can be the biggest motivators of all.
    Stacie recently posted FROZEN II Printables Recipes Activity Sheets and Games #DisneyFrozenMy Profile

  • Tara Pittman
    December 16, 2019

    I too dont like movie theaters. I would rather rent the movie and watch it at home

  • Brianne Tursi Manz
    December 16, 2019

    Who knew that the small hand of a child could calm the high levels of anxiety? I am so proud of you and Falynn too!

  • Matt Taylor
    December 16, 2019

    So awesome you were able to push past the anxiety and make your kids’ day! 🙂

  • Cecile Blaireau
    December 16, 2019

    well done for doing it for your girls and having a lovely time together. Anxiety is so hard… But you made a fab memory here

  • Bill Sweeney
    December 16, 2019

    Anxiety can be so overwhelming to people. So much so, that people who don’t suffer from it don’t know the facts or realize what’s going on. I think Falynn in a way knew what was going on and served as a comfort to you too!
    Bill Sweeney recently posted Experience Santa Like Never BeforeMy Profile

    • Heather
      December 16, 2019

      She’s so small and I like to believe that she has no idea, though I think you may be right.

  • Cristina Petrini
    December 16, 2019

    Who would have thought that cinema could help so much? It’s really great to read your story!

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