What Is Real Right Now

Project Life | Week Thirty-Four

WHAT'S REAL RIGHT NOW Simon began the 4th grade last week. The start of school has traditionally been a challenge for him as he navigates a new classroom, new teachers, new structures and a return to old routines here at home but so far he's been doing great. Definitely a bit sleepy this morning as we all adjust to waking up earlier.

WHAT'S REAL RIGHT NOW is that Simon is doing just awesome: riding his bike, reaching out to other kids, being more comfortable in new situations, reading books with joy and excitement. It's so amazing how much he loves to read if it's something he's really interested in - which really is not all that amazing when I remember that my favorite things to read are things I'm really into and excited about. We just need to find more of things for him. A couple Tuesdays ago he read a Shrek book to me for 2 hours while I was working.

WHAT'S REAL RIGHT NOW is that fall is on it's way. I could feel it last night coming in through the half-open windows. I saw it yesterday in a few leaves that are beginning to change colors and drop to the street. I saw it again early this morning when waking to complete darkness.

WHAT'S REAL RIGHT NOW is that Chris and I are having a challenging time. There are many things we are great at together and yet many areas in which we struggle to connect. I want you to know that life is real here - just as it is in your home and your life - and there's good and bad and easy days and hard ones and this happens to be a time in my life that is really hard. I'd totally take your prayers, your positive energy, your wishes of strength and peace, and your compassion. Things are changing here and I'm hoping to face this next chapter of my story with grace and an open heart.

WHAT'S REAL RIGHT NOW is that Anna is two. She's more two than I think Simon ever was - she's got opinions and the language skills to back them up. She's also much more of a boundary tester than Simon. She loves to jump on the couch and asks "Why Mom?" as a response to just about everything. She started a daily Montessori preschool last week and seems to be adjusting just fine. Chris and I dropped her off this morning and she was so happy to show him her school and have him meet her teacher and see her classroom. She's really pretty darn amazing and I'm so happy she's a part of my life.

WHAT'S REAL RIGHT NOW is that I finished both The Help and Little Bee last month. Loved them both. I asked for suggestions via Facebook and Twitter last week and started Cutting For Stone last night. Hoping to go see The Help this weekend.

WHAT'S REAL RIGHT NOW is that this post from my friend Jen Lemen is super inspiring: How To Be Dangerous.

WHAT'S REAL RIGHT NOW are these words: This is the beginning of a new day. You have been given this day to use as you will. You can waste it or use it for good. What you do today is important because you are exchanging a day of your life for it. When tomorrow comes, this day will be gone forever; in its place is something that you have left behind...let it be something good. Author Unknown.

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  1. ana roat

    2011-09-17 22:56:08 -0400

    Marriage is awesome but not easy and certainly worth the effort. God's blessings to you and Chris Ali as you work together to form a yet stronger union. Remember thru God all things are possible...

  2. BARB T

    2011-09-18 18:39:40 -0400

    Ali, you are so very brave to be putting so much out there. I hope you could feel the love and support that has come forth for you. I am 62 and have been married 42 years and have 3 children and 8 grandchildren. I do not need to tell you that it has not been easy. It has been real raw life. It has had so many joyous moments I could have burst. You are in my thoughts.
    Thank you so much for the quote at the end.

  3. Kate

    2011-09-18 21:49:00 -0400

    Thank you for sharing "real life". It sometimes is messy :( you'll be in my thoughts and prayers. Loads of love- Kate

  4. BiBi

    2011-09-19 11:22:23 -0400

    After 20 years of marriage, all of a sudden we are not connecting like we used to. I have not opened up to any of my friends or family about this. I am too worried about being judged or letting others know how I feel. and I feel weak and defeated.

    Thank you for your honesty. I wish I could follow in your footsteps.

  5. Katie

    2011-09-19 12:58:53 -0400

    I appreciate your being real. SO often all we find on the interweb are glossy, picture perfect lives and that is not reality. Sometimes life is hard. Being mother, wife, etc.. can be very difficult, but we must persevere.

    Praying for you and yours!

  6. kristen

    2011-09-19 15:55:27 -0400

    praying for you very intently. DH and I are celebrating 25 years this fall and I have to say that being married is the hardest thing I've ever done. The best advice we ever received was to "with your first love - do the things you did in the beginning" - it actually comes from the book of Revelations in the Bible. So when we hit a stuck spot - we do the things we did in the beginning...long walks, listening intently to each others hopes and dreams. We also made lists of why we wanted to marry the other person and it's been helpful to go back to that list and realize that in spite of all the changes, he is still the same person, at his core, that I chose so many many years ago. Blessings to you...

  7. joy

    2011-09-19 21:10:07 -0400

    You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers. Most days I have to remember...one breath at a time, one moment at a time, one day at a time. You have inspired me for years and in my saddest times I always have had your blog to bring light to my day and a smile to my soul. God Bless you and keep you, Ali.

  8. Fun Mama - Deanna

    2011-09-20 00:01:25 -0400

    Some days, weeks and months are just hard. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  9. Alison Ross

    2011-09-20 03:42:13 -0400

    I really feel for you Ali and wish you all the best for the future whatever it may bring for you and your family. Hugs!

  10. Project Life | Week Thirty-Seven | Ali Edwards

    2011-09-20 06:01:01 -0400

    [...] included journaling from my What Is Real Right Now post as an insert. I also added a really lovely letterpress printed wedding invitation for my [...]

  11. Katie

    2011-09-20 11:43:19 -0400

    Ali - I'm just getting caught up on blog reading and I wanted to express my care and concern for your sweet family. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  12. Karen Foster

    2011-09-20 15:21:20 -0400

    It is so hard to have grace in difficult times. My immediate reaction is to react....I love your approach. Hope everything works out with your adorable family.

  13. Karen S

    2011-09-20 16:30:37 -0400

    Ali - thanks for showing us what's real - memory keeping is just not about smiles and giggles. Sometimes it's just documenting the journey along the way, including the bumps and hills that we all struggle to climb. I admire your bravery, your dedication to family, your ability to inspire. Please know that our prayers and good thoughts will be with you as you try and navigate the rough seas of life.

  14. Mitch Guindon

    2011-09-22 20:19:31 -0400

    I am trying very hard to send you positive vibes since I am trying very hard to create some of my own.... Life is hard and bizarre sometimes, but then again we learn from our mistakes, at least we try.... But it is so easy to fall back into old patterns... So we get up again and keep on trying, we have a mission on this earth, wish I knew what's mine... I've got a job interview tomorrow, I hope it goes well, trying to get a loan but finding only closed doors because of silly mistakes... Ah, enough, I will get the job and get the loan!!!!! Now that is positive thinking!!! See ya!

  15. Julie

    2011-09-23 07:59:08 -0400

    Ali, never never never give up. Never. Please.

  16. Lanne

    2011-09-24 10:45:34 -0400

    sending you good and positive thoughts for all 4 of you. I decided a while ago that in the 80+ years I intended to be married for there was absolutely going to be times of disagreement, saddness, anger, hurt, love, happiness, laughter, disappointment .. the whole range and spectrum .. and now i find myself reflecting. oh..so this is one of those not so disney days... Ok then. Its all part of being together and sharing the journey. It helps me stay on the path, even if we are walking at the opposite sides of it at various points.

  17. Kimberlee

    2011-09-25 10:49:57 -0400

    Ironically, I haven't been keeping up with your blog much lately because we've been going through some changes in our lives, and things have been sort of chaotic. I just saw this post today and it just made me wish that I could reach out and give you a hug. Hang in there. You are loved.

    Positive thoughts and energy your way.

    You are so wonderful. Thanks so much for continuing to share your life.

  18. Maxi

    2011-09-25 17:23:04 -0400

    Sending positive thoughts and love your way. Life is tough and keeping it all together at times seems almost impossible. I hope with all my heart that things can be discussed, worked upon, compromised and whatever else needs to be done for you both to be in the loving, happy place you clearly deserve.


  19. tchris

    2011-09-26 17:08:53 -0400

    Thank you for sharing your real life. I read a lot of these blogs and I think, "how do these ladies have such joyous happy lives... all. the. time?" Not that I wish you unhappiness, but it just makes me wonder how you avoid the day to day struggles of life. Now I know you don't, but that you live life gracefully, and that inspires me to do the same. Thank you. I pray that you and Chris overcome the challenges you are facing right now and that you get a respite from some of the struggles you are dealing with. {Big Hugs}

  20. marta

    2011-09-27 01:30:47 -0400

    am thinking of you. be strong and listen to that amazing still small voice for guidance. you will continue to inspire us despite the days you feel alone. you are not. xo

  21. Carina

    2011-09-27 04:09:22 -0400

    Ali, Just to thank you for the inspiration. I finally began my Project Life... a French girl...

  22. Joan B

    2011-09-27 07:14:17 -0400

    sorry to hear of your life troubles. hope whatever is going on resolves itself with as much ease as possible under the circumstances.

  23. Frau Mayer

    2011-10-07 13:33:01 -0400

    Very often, challenging times mean the beginning of something wonderful. Sending lots of strength and good vibrations your way.

  24. ali

    2011-11-14 02:55:43 -0500

    dear Ali, please tell me that you and Chris didn't get a divorce, and that you two and your family can make everything alright. My " kids adore you for being such a "do it with your kids and"husband. Me too! " please tell me you are OK

    Love and bst wishes'Deb

  25. Jennifer Harkema

    2011-12-01 15:51:45 -0500

    Praying for strength for you and your family!

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