I think a lot of women out there are a lot like myself. I am a very strong confident, independent woman who for the most part has raised my 2 children (now grown adults) on my own. I am also someone who had primarily played it safe in my life.

When you are a single mother of any child or number of children, I think it is very easy and feels almost necessary to play it safe in life. I have an associate in Hotel/Restaurant Management but given the crazy hours and time demands, I did not feel it was right to pursue a career in that industry. 

The Sharing Journal - coverMy children have always come first, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I chose a nice safe, 8:30am – 5:00pm with benefits that allowed me to have quality time with the kids. Financially I have always walked a fine line but in the same breath, have always made it work. Sometimes I look back and have no idea how I pulled it off! I toyed with the idea of getting a part time job, and although financially it would have made more sense, but that was not my priority.

I remember when the kids were young and I wasn’t dating, people would always ask “aren’t you lonely”…hello…. I am raising 2 kids with sports, school and all of the activities, doctors and dentist appointments that’s go along with it. I was never ever lonely to be honest. I loved the quality time with the kids, and since their father lives out of state…I had a lot of it. I worked hard at building a strong foundation for the “the original three”. I think that work has paid off. I feel very fortunate every day to have a great, strong relationship with both of my sons and to see their bond of brotherhood.

Along the way to where I am now, I did remarry to a wonderful man. He loves and supports me in all that I do and never tries to change who I am. How could you ask for more? I have also stayed with the same safe job,18 years now. Suddenly one day you look up and realize that it has been 18 years! What? No no, this was not the plan…I was not meant to be here forever.

I am slowly learning to switch gears to the not so safe zone. My job has served its purpose and now the kids are grown, I don’t need to be quite as safe. I can be opening my mind and thinking about what I want to do. I think that part of my brain is a bit rusty but I am chipping away at it. Something I have always wanted to do was to be a writer. It is kind of a secret wish I have always had. Do you have your own? That is where The Sharing Journal comes into play.

I began pursing my dream and had been writing for a few months kicking around different concepts but nothing stuck until the Journal. I am a great communicator and am often the one to help people learn to express themselves. If I mad, no problem…I lay it all out there. Never a vicious way but in a very no holds barred let you have it kind of way. I find that if my feelings are hurt I tend to get very quiet. I work it out in my own mind and move on. Personally, I wanted to get better at expressing those feelings to learn from them and to share with others. My husband is a sweetheart and would never purposely hurt my feelings…but sometimes it happens. Or sometimes it happens in other relationships and this book could work for those too. More than anything I feel like this Journal is meant to show love and respect for each other, yourself and your relationship. It is a fun and engaging workbook of sorts. It is not too heavy and you do not need to be in a bad spot in your relationship to use it. If you think about it, we all learn to communicate differently. Even if you are in the same household with brothers and sisters, you each learn something different from your environment. What you consider funny or not hurtful towards someone may not actually be taken as ether of those things. It is also fun to learn and remember things about yourself.

The concept of the book is that you buy 2 and you each fill out part or all the book at one time, however you decide to have fun with it. You take your time to answer the questions the questions and then you swap books to reach each other’s answers. No matter how well you think you know someone…. I guarantee you will discover something new about them and them about you. Then you discuss the answers and enjoy where it takes you.

I am not someone who likes to be the center of attention so for me to write this article is in a way me stepping into the not so safe zone as well. To put my words, dreams and emotions out there for all to see is a bit scary but there comes a time when you need to make a choice. Do I minimize my dreams and get caught in the rat race of day to day to day to day…or do you pause, catch yourself and start stepping in a new direction? It honestly is one step at a time and I would never want to look back on my life and say “ I wish I had been an author”…. make your dreams happen now. And enjoy my book while you do!

Alexa Grace Simmons