All posts by pennykandyprincess27

About pennykandyprincess27

I am a single mom with a degree in social work. I've worked outside the home some but I've been blessed to mostly be a stay home mom. I have an 8 and a 17 year old. One boy one girl. At one time I'd have called myself a writer and I'm trying to find my voice again. I'm realizing it's very hard to condense who I am into this little box. :) Join me here and you'll know more than you might've ever wanted to know!


I was 28 when I met you.  I was in a hurry.  I was so young and yet I felt as if I’d already had two separate lives and you were the beginning of the third.  I survived an abusive and neglected childhood, sexual abuse, sexual violence, abandonment, relationship failures, unwed motherhood, homelessness, two different colleges and a deep and unyielding sense of aloneness mixed with hope for change.  I felt responsible for the world. I felt responsible for fixing each and every mistake I ever witnessed in my parents’ relational patterns.  I felt responsible for making sure that any and every person in my little girl’s life was as close to Jesus “perfect” as humanly possible.  I was convinced that was the only way I could possibly break the generational curses in our family and offer my daughter something more.  I was convinced I was right and petrified I’d fail.

You were quiet and sweet and unassuming.  You were happy with who you were and you looked at me like I was a beautiful work of Gods hand.  You let me lead while you gently tried to convince me I was safe with you.  I loved you immediately.  You scared me to death. You didn’t have any of the worldly achievements I thought anyone I was with HAD to have for us to be successful.  The kindness and goodness you DID have made me believe that if I fixed you (yes I know) that we’d be fine. You just had to meet my ever rising expectations for who you were supposed to be.

With my love (I absolutely did love you)  I l slowly but surely began re-making you to fit the image in my mind.  The more I asked the more you gave.  The more I cried the more you caved.  The more I demanded the more you tied yourself in knots to suit me.  I pushed you so hard that I backed you into a corner. I asked you to achieve goals that were not only unnecessary they were impossible. Rather than disappoint me you lied.  You told me what I wanted to hear.  You could have pushed back, hurt me and told the truth.  You could have stood up for yourself and rightfully demanded that I either accept you as you were or let you walk away.  You didn’t. You let me bully you.  You responded to my demands with a sheepish apology first and then later lies and lies and more lies.

Once the lies were discovered I was utterly crushed.  I also suddenly had an overwhelming sense of comfort with you.  I told you how angry I was and then I begged you to take me to bed.  I begged you to stay with me for two more weeks.  You were crestfallen and confused  If I was furious why did I want you to stay.  If I was hurt and angry why did I want you more?  All perfectly reasonable questions. particularly for someone who has spent life watching healthy loving relationships.  I had no answers then.

I’m 42 and I have them now.  I set us up for failure. I refused to accept you as you were and just see if we could make a life.  I demanded that you become someone else while insisting that I was just encouraging you to do what was best.  I didn’t let you determine your own path.  You let me steamroll you.  I realize I’m a formidable force when I use all the tools of dysfunction that I’ve gathered in my life.  I had no real idea the damage I was doing.  Yes, I was wounded by the lies.  Yes, they broke my heart.  They also were soul deep familiar to me.  I knew how to react to THAT kind of relationship to THAT kind of behavior.  For me, that’s the only love I’d ever seen.  I knew how to play that part and now that you were playing the part of the lying bastard I knew how to play the part of the ever-loving, ever suffering martyr.

We went round and round for 12 years. Trying and failing, loving and crying, ending and beginning.  Round and round and round until one day you cried, uncle.  You said enough.  You couldn’t do it anymore and you were gone.  No discussion, no argument, no tears, no bargaining: gone.  GONE. I was stunned.  I never expected you to leave for good.  I never expected you to protect yourself.  I never expected to be someone you needed protection from.

I honestly didn’t know what happened to lead up to the abrupt exit.  It took me a while and then one day I found the answer.  It was NOT anything I ever expected.  I found a book for adult children of narcissistic parents.  I began reading it to try to find some recovery from what I went through as a child and quickly discovered that I had created the same suffering in the people I love the most.  *I* had many narcissistic behaviors and habits.  I was manipulative, judgmental, irrational and unrelentingly impossible to please.  I had pushed you (and others) to the absolute limit.  I pushed you out of my life so you could save your own.  Talk about a kick in the gut.  I couldn’t breathe.  In my memory, every conversation, every fight, every breakup and makeup ran through my head with a magnifying glass squarely on my narcissistic behavior and your desperately confused response and attempt to please me.  Immediately after it all ran through my mind I ran to the bathroom as it all flew up and out in a fit of vomiting.   My stomach just could not handle what my head and heart were finally piecing together.

Since that day I have studied and worked to change my thought patterns and my behavior.  I went to each of my most deeply loved relationships and owned my abusive behavior and asked forgiveness and how I could make it right.  The only one left to make amends to was you.  I reached for you and you weren’t there.  I called to you and was answered with silence.  I finally resorted to desperate tactics and begged you to answer me and thank God you did.  I recounted the last few enlightening moths.  I apologized for abuse I dished out.  I asked how I could make it right.  In true form.  You graciously and sweetly accepted my apology, granted forgiveness and even praised me for having the courage to do the right thing.  All the love I have for you immediately flooded every single cell in my body.

I told you how I felt.  I asked how you felt.  I discovered you had moved on.  My abuse had wounded you to the point of closing your heart to any feelings other than a loving friendship with me.  Again, all the air was sucked out of my lungs.  Hot, guilty tears streamed down my cheeks as I steadied my voice so that my selfish hopes did not burden you further. I laughed with you and we talked off and on for a little less than an hour.  As we ended our chat I asked for one more chance.  Just one more.  You asked me to give you a couple of weeks to see how you might feel.  I’ve done that.

Now, after a month of silence and heart-wrenching waiting, I’ve hand sewn a quilt as an offering of love and hope. As I sit here it is somewhere in Chicago waiting for the next leg of the trip before it lands in Scotland on your doorstep.  My heart is in that box. Wrapped in the folds of that blanket, prayers sewn with every stitch of thread.  Love made manifest in patterns and fabric.  The two weeks have come and gone and your silence remains.  My offering, my heart, and my hopes for our future are somewhere in a warehouse in Chicago.  Me?  I’m (more patiently than I have in my lifetime thus far) waiting for word.  I’m waiting for that box to reach your doorstep.  I’m waiting for that offering to wrap you in the willingness to let hope win over fear.  I’m praying with every cell in my body and soul that God’s will is us and that your heart will allow you to take one more leap of faith.  I realize that the entire prospect of changing every single part of your life on the promise that another person will love, honor and keep you until death we do part is deeply frightening.   I’m scared too.  The only thought that scares me more is a future without you in it.  So, I’ll wait.  I’ll pray,  I’ll stay busy and distracted as much as possible to make the time go faster.  My heart will sit wrapped in that box in Chicago until the day that it reaches your hands.  When it does, open it carefully, my heart is fragile.  The only safe place it’s ever known is your hands.




Last night I had a beautiful dream. It was weird and jumbled up (as most dreams seem to be) but beautiful just the same. I got to see two weddings in bits and pieces. They were both mine. They were both AMAZING. Now, I’ve never been married and always wanted to be so I know that’s one of the reasons the dream was both weird and wonderful. It was in flashes so forgive the ‘flash like” bits and pieces that are going to come at ya.

The first marriage was to a very sweet, handsome and strong man with a bald head and a broad smile that shined like the sun. He was very affectionate and never let a day go by without making me feel adored. He hugged me and kissed me and laughed with me constantly. Looking in his eyes made my heart beat faster and my entire body warm. I can see us kissing, hear our mingled laughter, see his sparkling dark eyes. He is my joy in human form. My love. My husband. ~sigh~

We went on a boat, some type of trip, he died on the trip. We knew it was coming when it happened. I didn’t know how I could go on. I saw flashes of our wedding. Of the people who were there. The smiles on faces that I cherished. The face of his best man, his best friend. I saw over and over again my love, my husband, in my mind and I fell to my knees in grief. My heart couldn’t beat again. My warmth was gone. My world was lost in a wisp of wind. My heart was broken. I grieved. I grieved. I grieved.

Then I saw myself in a mirror, in a dress of copper hue. The men were wearing deep chocolate brown ties and suits and we’re all walking in a line. I’m feeling more beautiful than I thought could be possible. I am feeling so thankful for this moment, these people. We are waiting our turn to be the wedding party. The wedding before us is almost over, I’m almost ready. I’m checking everyone to see that they are in place. They are all smiling broadly at me and a few gasp as they see me and tell me how lovely I am. My dress is copper and brown and perfection in fabric and color. My heart is flying high. I close my eyes and I see that love that I lost. He holds me close and he whispers to me to be happy. “Be happy the way you made my life happy. Love him and let him love you. Love deeply. Live happily. I’m at peace now”.

The tears flow fast and freely now. I can feel his arms around me and I ache to be held again. I open my eyes and before me is my new love, my husband to be. His best man. His best friend. My new love. My husband to be. He is beautiful. He is strong. He is soft. His chin is strong. His curls are soft and black. he has them tied back at his neck and his coppery orange tie makes me smile. My eyes look up and reach his. All are filled with tears and love. He wraps his arms around me and whispers “I miss him too. He’s with us today.” I wrap my arms around him and feel warmth filling me again. Feel my heart ache with it’s broken fullness.

Then I’m looking for my father. He’s nowhere to be found. I sing a little rhyming song about waiting 37 years for this moment. I wish I could remember the words now that I’m awake. I spin in a circle and my friends gathered cheer and sing the rhyme with me. The happiness is palpable. I keep looking at my dress and feeling beautiful and loving the beauty of the colors. I notice a pacifier pinned to the front of my dress and I smile at the thought of my sweet daughter who is with me in spirit even though her body is in another country today. I miss her. My son, he’s the best man today. My arm slides into my father’s as he appears confused and wondering why he’s there. I remind him that of course I want him here today. “Put your bags down and walk with me, it’s our turn now. We walk arm in arm down the downward slanting isle My eyes lock with my new love and we both smile and shine. Our hands intertwine and I look down at them and then up at him as he kisses my lips. He is so soft and strong, So loving and brave. So safe and sound. He is my home. He is my love and my friend. He is my forever.

My eyes open to my room full of sunshine and my daughter with her dog. The dream is over now the real world is calling me. The dream keeps echoing in my head. The feeling of love still filling my heart. The colors spinning in my mind. I hope this dream is a vision of part of my future. I want to have that feeling every single day. Eyes open, heart full, life lived. That’s my prayer. That’s my hope. That’s my dream.

orange fairy wedding dresses - Google Search:


Bleeding Butterflies

The words you spoke landed in my heart like tiny tarsi of steel; tore shreds from my heart and soul as each one flew away with the changing winds of your inner torment. Each promise full of color and beauty that grew greater in glory like the spreading of wings offering glimpses of God’s most intricate and delicate work. Just before they turned and flitted away in a breath. Just out of reach taking with them the bloody flesh torn from me in my most secret places in the darkest parts of my heart.
Grasping at the open wound in my chest, gasping for air trying in vain to catch just one…..
Please, just one so that there might be some part of my dream to remain and sustain me.


Dreams and Diapers

For as long as I can remember I’ve had ONE dream for my life.  There have always been constellations of additions to the dream, floating like butterflies gently landing in my heart and then flitting away.  All the while, leaving the core of who I am: I have always been a wife and mother.

Just like so many other girls of earlier generations I imagined what and who my husband would be.  I imagined our home, our children and the way in which we would love one another.  I imagined having a family.  I never fully pictured the faces names or types of people they would all be.  I simply always left the place in my heart open for the man who would be the man I loved and for the little people that we would bring into our life through that love.

Even as a young kid I can remember thinking it wasn’t ok to want to be “just a mother” as  primary goal for my life.  My parents were divorced and both deeply unhappy people.  My father has been married and divorced four times now.  My mother was single the entirety of my child and young adulthood.  She did remarry while I was in college to a man who had three daughters of his own.  From where I sat (very far from them in another state as well as on another planet emotionally) from my mother; it seemed she had settled for something less than she wanted.    She and I have had a deeply strained relationship since I was 14 and I preferred distance and walls for my safety.  They both still seemed deeply unhappy.  My father even went so far as to tell me that I should never get married.

Thanks to all of that I kept my hearts desire quietly to myself and to a very few friends.  I also wanted to do something in my life that would change the lives of other people for the better.  I eventually found social work and felt that it was my vocational home.  It’s core values mirrored my own.  I felt I could do this work as a natural extension of who I was at the heart.  I was excited.  All the while keeping an eye out for that man who would join me on my journey.

I’ve loved three men in my life with all of my heart.  The second of which I loved more than I thought was possible to ever love anyone.  I knew exactly who he was, all his cracks and broken-ness.  All his weaknesses and strengths.  As many of his secrets as I could pry from his guarded  heart.  I guarded my own just as fiercely out of fear of having it shattered beyond repair .  I left him out of fear that I would repeat the mistakes I watched my father make.  I was desperate to avoid being a man’s “savior” or have a man try to be mine.  There is only One Savior and that is Christ.  Leaving him broke my heart but left me feeling I have somehow made progress; moved closer to the man I was meant to find.  (Secretly hoping that it would motivate the man I left to become that man b/c I believed  he could).

The man I dated after that seemed to be a nice man but was never someone I loved.  He was someone, I freely admit,  that I used to fill the empty space left in my broken heart.  He was verbally and emotionally abusive.   It was the quiet kind of abuse that sneaks into you  and starts to chip away at all the strength that you build in your soul.  For reasons only God will know, this is the man who became the father of the only child I have ever carried in my womb.  This fact broke my heart from the beginning but only for the child I carried.  I realized that the bad decisions I had made and the weakness that I allowed to keep me with the wrong man will now cost my child a debt she never asked for.  She will be burdened for the rest of her life with all the weakness, cruelty and self- centeredness that the man who helped create her keeps in his heart.  For me this is as close to an unforgivable sin as can exist in my world.

I left this man. I tried to learn to forgive myself for this failure.  I enjoyed each and every second of my pregnancy.  I reveled in how I was working hand in hand with the Heavenly Father to craft His child and work at making Good for her out of all of my failures. I prayed constantly.  I watched excitedly as my belly grew (as well as the rest of me!) I loved knowing how strong my body was and how strong I knew my baby was.  I loved the feel of her kick and the look of my nice round belly.  I’d never felt so strong, so rooted, so connected to the creator through the work He was doing in my body and in my heart.  My Father loved me back to health.  We whispered to each other every night.  I shared my fears and failings and He held me and shared His Love and Forgiveness.  I shared my dreams for my little family and He shared His strength and His protection for us.  I began to grow in confidence.  This growth culminated in the birth of the amazing fighting spirit gift that is my daughter Abigail Grayce….

More to come

Continue reading Dreams and Diapers

Who Killed Virginia Woolf? CW: suicide; ableism; sexual abuse

Painfully real. Painfully beautiful

Karrie higgins

In response to Amanda Lauren and XOJane. This is what it means to be triggered by your ableist, thoughtless, cruel writing. This is what happens when people with mental illness and disability internalize ableism. This is how words become deadly.

Content warning: suicide; ableism; mental illness; abuse; caregiver abuse; psychiatric commitment; violence; dead bodies

If you are in suicide crisis, please call the National Suicide Hotline at 1 (800) 273-8255.

If you are a victim of sexual assault in crisis, please call RAINN at 800.656.HOPE (4673).


The first time it happened, a stranger in Prairie Lights bookstore in Iowa City called me “the second coming.” He was pointing to a display of tote bags and t-shirts printed with Virginia Woolf’s portrait.

Black and white profile photograph of Virginia Woolf. She is seated facing left, with her long hair in a bun at the nape of her neck. She wears a white, long-sleeved dress. Her mouth is closed, face relaxed, and eyes appear almost unfocused. English novelist and critic Virginia Woolf (1882 – 1941), 1902. (Photo by George C. Beresford/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

“That could be you,” he said.

He didn’t know I was a writer…

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Prince and the Sparkle Brains (cw: disability, ableism, sexual abuse)

I love this so much. As someone who’s gone from being a “pretty girl with a limp” to a “fat woman in a wheelchair” among other similarities between us,(in that it’s very hard to see yourself as a whole person sometimes when you are ‘sparklebrain’ and other people delete your gender or your sexuality or any other part of you that makes you whole and beautiful) this was a moment where I thought of myself as ‘same’ and ‘different’ simultaneously. This is beautiful.

Karrie higgins

The day Prince died, I was walking to the audiologist office to pick out hearing aids, Purple Rain playing on my purple iPod, my lipstick-red walking cane tapping its drumbeat on the sidewalk, vibrating through my wrist bones to my elbow bones to my shoulders to my clavicles to my brain, telling me: I am whole. Without my cane, without that drumbeat, my brain gets confused: Where is my musical limb?

The cane makes music just for me. When I walk to the beat, I drum to the beat. Doesn’t matter about my hearing anymore. I am a walking musical instrument.

Except it does matter, because certain music saved my life. Certain music still saves my life.

Maybe I can hear Prince like I did when I was a kid, I thought. How much of his music am I missing? What frequency is his voice?

I wanted a purple hearing aid to match my pastel…

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16 Unconventional Signs You’ve Found Your Soulmate


Thought Catalog

Screen Shot 2014-06-16 at 5.29.49 PMLulu Lovering

1. You’ve split up — often unpredictably and unexpectedly. Soul mates rarely experience “happily ever after” right away, despite what media and culture tells us. Often the meeting is too intense to absorb immediately, and you have to separate for a while. You find your way back though.

2. They’ve changed you for the better. The people who we are affected by the most are the ones who have changed us just by their presence in our lives overhauling everything we thought we knew and wanted. It’s not a bad thing, this is supposed to happen, usually.

3. You recognize a family member in them. This sounds strange, but in my best friends and romantic partners, I can always tell they’re going to be someone to me upon first meeting because they instantly remind me of my mom or dad or sibling — not in a creepy way, in a…

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16 Things Your Girlfriend’s Best Friend Wants You To Know


Thought Catalog

1. I’m going to know before you know. I’m going to come first with the stuff that matters: her successes, struggles, joys, bad moods, qualms with you. This is not to say you won’t come first one day, just that you shouldn’t take it personally that she’s discussed her personal crisis with me before you get a text about it. (Down the line, you’ll probably look back and realize you prefer it this way.)

2. She and I are already in a groove. We communicate entire thoughts with emojis, know what the other one is thinking from a glance, know when and how to intervene in a personal crisis, etc. So when we start hilariously cracking up over something you seem to be painfully on the outside of, just let us have that moment.

3. I am the only person she knows she has to respond to immediately (with the exception of…

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