Putting myself Together...

Very long

Almost 2 weeks ago I posted about having a craptastic wardrobe.

From that moment until this I’ve given myself a make over for our new journey and my return to work. Many know my daughter was diagnosed with one of the rarest viruses in the world AFM Acute (suddenly and immediate) Flaccid (limp body and internal organs) Myelitis (swelling in the back and spine) on January 20,2020. Zi’Joy lost control and function of her body from the waist down.

My priority has only been for my rainbow baby who is almost 3 and her healing and all of her Drs/Physical/Occupational therapy and counseling appointments. My craptastic mom wardrobe was severely lacking and I was showing signs of just not caring about myself. As one YLF Family said you are experiencing an emotional trauma.

I decided to do a major overhaul of my wardrobe and it helped that we are moving so I decided to see what works for my life now and work life when I return from UnPaid FMLA. My body is not what it used to be and I’ve put on some weight that has come with stress eating.

I bagged up 5 large trash bags for donation things that I did not love or were not used in my life . 2 bags went to the trash can the others to my local donation center. I went through all of my footwear and did the same.

Next I made a list of what I needed what would serve me and moving forward what our days are like . Sitting waiting bending standing riding in long car rides for appointments meetings etc etc i did the same for work.

I set my budget lord sometimes you have to treat yourself. The good news for me is I’m a multiples person. If I see something and it looks good I buy in 2 or 5 different colors. Cause it’s easier.

I went to Walmart, Citi Trends, Rainbow and The local Thrift store because I did not have to think to hard or go to other stores with list in hand.

*Walmart
(These were all serviceable items)

1) 5 parirs of jeggings (different colors)

2)6 pairs of jeans for work
(the seat and thighs wear out over time)

3) 4 pairs of athletic bottoms 2 calf length and 2 floor length (for OT & PT)

4) foundational garments
4 sports bras
2 regular bras
20 new pairs of socks

*Rainbow and Citi trends
(My fun Flair)

1) 2 sweat tops (zip up red and yellow)

2) 3 Afrocentric tops (graphic tee shirts)

3) 5 dresses ( all cute and seasonless)

4). 1 skirt and 1 top with flair.
(Would have bought multiple but they were sold out in my size)

*Thrift Shopping
(My Frugal Style)

1) 2 sweater dresses (multiple different colors)

2) Wool sweater coat (So warm perfect for car rides and travel transitions to car parking lots and hospital visits when lugging a toddler around.

3) a pair of new boots from jambo. An excellent line of footwear my size. Looking for more retail $140 paid $12.99
(Score-gasim)

I carry a military style backpack that I’ve had sense Zi’Joy was born and it serves me very well I can be hands free to hold little ones hands.

This is my form of Athlisure Style and part updated Grunge look that I rocked in the 90s. I threw away all of my pregnancy leggings except for one pair I wear around the house.

We got some great news about Zi’Joy she will never be fully rid of AFM she is 1 of 900 cases world wide and 1 in a million she is a medical Miracle and her leading Neurologist in this Field says she is the the top 5% of recovery. The best she has ever seen. Shriners Children's Hospital is on Wednesday so hoping they will take our case.

This was a fun post and thank you for reading

Mama Donna.

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My Incredibly Craptastic Wardrobe

This has been my look and probably why I really don’t post much anymore.

I debated on if I should Post this picture or not.

Today was the 1st time I looked in the mirror. I mean really looked.
I saw me for the 1st time
I used to be so fashionable.
I realized slowly but surely my wardrobe had become leggings, Ill fitting T-shirt, and white socks and cheap Walmart gym shoes.

I actually had more Ill fitting clothes in my hand to purchase to just do the job of covering me up.

Almost 3 years into motherhood I’ve had 2 self care moments and both were with my daughter with me.

She is back in daycare 2 hours a day 3 days a week. When not in daycare we are at Drs appointments and Physical and Occupational Therapy. I use that time to run errands and make phone calls and appointments.

I put what I had in my hand back on the rack. My body has changed so much and time is precious when solo parenting a sick child but if I am completely honest I was headed this way long before AFM Acute Flaccid Myelitis interrupted my daughter’s life on January 10,2020.

Tonight I’m taking a few hours to go through my things and purge keeping only what looks good and makes me happy and is serviceable. There are moments where I see who I used to be. I realize that no matter how hard I try to hold onto that person.

She is no longer me.

So today I said goodbye to her because I’m evolving into something new. I know I am a Queen and a Warrior but even They rest. Right now I’m treading water but I want to build a strong and sturdy ship that will last. AFM will not Win but it has certainly been a fight.

Someone asked me today why are you not bubbly anymore. I said because I’m finding my way in our new normal. With an outline of what I thought our life was going to be like vs the reality & odyssey we are currently on. I think Year one will be the hardest until we find our rhythm and I’m only in month 1.

Zi’Joy will be 3 years old in 60 days
and
I will be 46 years old in 90 days

I choose to put the clothes back that I had in hand after someone laughed at how I was dressed. She seems like that kind of person that would make fun of you and post a craptastic photo of you on social media with an horrific title.

I just wanted to tell her I was a tired solo parent who’s toddler in the midst of a battle after being completely paralyzed from the waist down at the beginning of the year of 2020 and I’m doing the best I can to keep it together each day. Instead I just put back those I’ll fitting cheap clothes and walked out of the store.

Bruised but NOT DEFEATED
MaMa Donna

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The Princess and the Queen In Wonderland

When my daughter woke up and said Donna I want to wear my princess dress and crown. I knew exactly what she had in mind.

So we began our simple transformation into The Princess and the Queen at Chicago’s Garfield Park Conservatory. It’s 183 acres of indoor green house and outdoor beauty. The perfect backdrop to our impromptu holiday photoshoot.

Not long after that we visited Clod Gate (aka the Bean) in downtown Chicago.

I look back at this year and think I’ve only made 3 post. Only 3!!!!

Whew this year has wiped me out for real. We have still been about town Day Tripping and will be turning our day trips into road trips for 2020. I look forward to new and amazing adventures and sharing more with you all.

When I say that motherhood in my Midlife has completely changed who I am. That is most certainly true. Women are WARRIORS IN THE FLESH.

The person that took our pictures said we were giving them “Alice In Wonderland” vibes hence the title.

Merry Christmas
Happy Hanukkah
Happy Kwanzaa
& Happy New Year
Zi’Joy & MaMa Donna

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Do you want to build a snow man

Who else loves Frozen?

I know I cannot be the only adult who does. Well we went to Go see Frozen this weekend and it was EPIC. I’m so glad there were parts for adults as well as kids. I went with a 71 year old a 45 year old(me) a 17 year old and my 2 year old and we all enjoyed it.

After we went there I took my toddler to the Glorious Lake Front of Chicago and Navy Pier which my daughter thought was the beloved home of Anna & Elssa of Erindale. We wandered all over looking for them. Glad I brought the stroller. Oh my I must have walked about 4 miles if not more.

Hence the the title. Anyway. We had to bundle up because it was so could I thrifted my daughters outfit snow pants and Anna and Elsa hat and rolled up the snow pants when she played in the water. I brought her a change of clothing and boots just in case. I did not need them. In total we spent 5 hours downtown but it was so lovely.

I had my camo coat which I love it is water proof and unique and extra wide calf rainboots I bought from Walmart of all places. I will keep them forever. We had such a good weekend. Navy Pier in Chicago is amazing and I’m hoping to travel the US with my daughter next year. The last time I went anywhere was my solo trip to New Orleans a few years back before surprise baby.

I hope you all have a great weekend If you celebrate the Holiday Happy thanksgiving . As always I’m still viewing YLF not really commenting but love you guys

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A little Apocalyptic...

Sometimes everything goes boom in a good way.

We have been still out here getting our life. Today was filled with so many great things. I’m learning how to take more selfies so I think I may be able to post a bit more. Anyway today we went thrift shopping at our local Fleek Market and was gifted these great hula hoops we then went to the park and played for about 3HOURS.

This evening at our local park we met a group of women. A club called 40+ Double Dutch Club simply amazing. Zi’Joy heard the skipping of the rope and wanted to go over. These women ranged in age from 41. To 53. They are most certainly the bomb. I wished I could post video

We played:
Double Dutch
Chinese Rope
(Jump in jump out jump side to side jump on jump in jump out)
Jacks
Hula Hoops

And had the best 2 hours. They are out there every Saturday. Brought back great memories. We also took some great selfies. My daughter found this tree branch and we used it as a walking stick and prop for our photo shoot. We are on fb if you would like to follow us MidLife Melanin MaMa

Thank you for reading.

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It’s a nice day for a white wedding...

It was a surprise wedding and oh boy it was so much fun. Our friend invited us to a beautiful brunch and my little one was included. The only request was to wear something white. I wore this white mesh top with little silver balls attached harem denim joggers and silver white sequins tennis shoes. Hey, my 2 year old is a distance Olympic runner. I need to be ready.

My daughter wore a lace dress silver beaded necklaces a fascinator made of lace and flowers. It was so cute. Sorry I did not get a picture of us standing to show my full outfit but trust it was cute.
I hope this post finds you all well and enjoying the fashionable journey.

Miss you all so much Family!!!

L

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Winter Wonderland

Tis the season to dress as warmly as possible. Hey Family, we hope you are all enjoying winter as much as we are. The weather here in the Chi has been wacky and warm but on this day it was 10 degrees. We enjoyed a winter wonderland Festival at our local veterans park on this day.

We hope you all have a Merry Merry and a Happy Happy.

Until next time.

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Sunny Side Up...

Oh goodness it has been a long time really life gets so busy. Hey Family we over here waving from Chicago. Zi'Joy is growing so fast we just had her 16 month check-up appointment. This was a book fair we went to we went to the book fair last year and this one of our growing established traditions. The look for today was sunny and bright it was hot outside about 90 something degrees so I decided to wear some yellow. These are pants even though it looks like a skirt or maybe a dress and then I might yellow tank top my daughter had on a dress with pink flamingos and pink shoes. So it just wanted to say hi and we hope that your life is going well and your fashion journey is going well.

Until next time you be well on your fashionable journey.

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7th Annual Ge'le Day..

Hey Family!

By now you might asking yourself. What is a Ge'Le Day? Am I right or did I pique your interest? Official Definition at the bottom. So I always try to inform educate inspire when I talk about what we do and what we wear and why we wear what we do. I have celebrated Ge'le day for the past 5 years and my daughter for the past 2 starting when she was 3 months old in 2017.

In the African American community there is a disconnect of tradition and history from Africa. We are in the dysphoria and so bringing our village together as a collective we create an established Traditions that are taken from a Melting Pot of Africa and America. One of these traditions are our celebration of this day. Many of my pictures that I post Are worn with the traditional Headwrap or The Ge'le. It is beautiful and comes in many different forms colors shapes and patterns.

What we wore:

Today started out overcast and gray and muggy. Eventually morning turning into rain showers and then sprinkles. When we reached our destination the lakefront of Chicago it was determined that our celebrational day would be moved indoors instead of Outdoors for the first time in 7 years. The color The Joy the visual were all there. Because of the weather I wanted to dress appropriately when I thought to be appropriately so my daughter and a very light denim onesie and a colorful head scarf from Nigeria myself and a denim lightweight tunic and leggings that came down to the knee with a Denim headwrap and also material in the same pattern in my daughter had. Waterproof shoes and accessories.

I hope you enjoy the colors the patterns and I hope that you enjoy the pictures of you didn't read because I'm long-winded. Today turned out beautifully and in the end we did get to celebrate by the water.

Official Definition:
The Gele is a traditional Nigerian Headwrap. It is worn during special occasions as an accessory to the traditional 'iro' (a wrap-around skirt) and 'buba' (a loose fitting blouse). Gele is usually made out of heavy or stiff fabric that can be wrapped and moulded into a specific shape.

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Hup 2,3,4...

Hey Family!!!

Long time no post. Well just wanted you to know that we are still here still growing as Toddler & Mid Life Melanin MaMa. Someone told me I'm part of a sandwich generation where I'm taking taking care of a baby boomer and a baby ( toddler) do as you can see I have my hands full.

I really love these outfits for us and we do the similar looks or the twin looks. I in my head wrapping my daughter in the stylish camouflage pink and white hat. This was a good day. I plan to post more in the future but don't really hold me to that but it's great seeing you all and seeing all the new people and all of our seasoned veterans.

As always be well in your stylish Journey.

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