Tuesday, 3 December 2013

A new relationship.....

It was in the tasty Costa coffee that I overheard two women discussing a new relationship one had started. We overhear so many conversations in so many situations but what caught my attention to this particular one, was the topic of when to introduce that new partner to their child! For me this is such an important subject as a single parent, this is something I feel I have got wrong in the past.

So when is the right time to introduce your new partner to your child? Whilst I think that only a few weeks of dating is too soon I also believe there is no right or wrong here. Relationships can last or they can end, the most important factor should be in considering your child's feelings and needs. Maybe introducing that partner as a friend at the start would be best suited, as it gives the child time to adapt, does not put pressure on the relationship and also helps ease the situation if the relationship ends.

There are so many factors to keep in mind. How does this new relationship affect the children involved, the new partner and the biological parents of the children?! I have in the past been in the position where I have allowed a new partner I was dating to meet Isla Mae. I must say I was lucky that they seem to adore her, however she did get a little bit attached and when that relationship came to an end she could not understand why she would not see them again. I was at blame here as I let her become part of this relationship early on! however I have learnt from this and I now know that when that time comes again I will not introduce them to Isla Mae until I am certain the relationship is serious enough.

You could say let's wait 6 months, you could wait a year.......but who knows what is round the corner! Relationships can last twenty years and then fall apart, as long as a child is thought about, loved and cared the transition should be a smooth happy change.

It is nice to hear stories from parents, who are re-married with children from their previous relationship but who get on extremely well. For some this is not the case and I have a couple of friends who are at constant battle with the other biological parent over their new relationship. I guess for myself this is a privilege I don't have! As Isla-Mae's biological father is not part of our lives and never will be.....every cloud ;)

So i guess the moral of the story here is, no time is the right time but the way you handle the situation can be! Don't put pressure on yourself or beat yourself up if you get it wrong. There is no right or wrong, just be patient and caring to your child's needs and let them know how much they are loved. I would definitely recommend introducing that new partner as a friend at the start. I know that when Mr Right knocks on my door I will be doing just that :)

Love to you all

Tara & Dream Bear xxxxx

Wednesday, 27 November 2013


The realisation has hit me that Christmas is just round the corner! I think I have actually gone into panic mode! I have done absolutely nothing, not one single present bought for anyone, I have not even wrote a single Christmas card. This I feel guilty about, as I love to send cards to the people who mean a lot to me, especially the ones who I don't get to see or stay in touch with as much as I should. I am now going to make it my mission to make these people know how much they mean to me this festive period. I feel that we all lead such busy and hectic lifestyles that sometimes we don't show our friends how much they mean to us, so I am taking Christmas as the opportunity to do this.........you may be receiving love from me ;)

So Christmas as a single parent, what does it mean to you? How do you spend the festive holiday? Do you look forward to It or do you dread it due to circumstances or financial worry? It is such a magical time for not only children but adults too yet through years of increasing commercialisation we seem to have lost the meaning of what Christmas is really about, which is the birth of Jesus.

It seems the focus is completely on decorations, food, drink, and an expensive list of presents! Whilst I am not disputing that I myself are amongst the people who think of Christmas in this way i still fear that we are to blame in the way this celebration period is changing and what views our children are starting to adopt.

I really want that magical feeling back, I want to go carol singing and I want my daughter to grow up appreciating Christmas and not expecting the latest IPad or other techno gimmick. This should be a chance to celebrate with love and feeling and spend it with the people we care about. For me I feel this is a great time to also reflect on the past years events and give gratitude for all you have.

With the increasing commercialisation of Christmas, single parents and parents in general are feeling the pressure and stress of fulfilling the "idea" of what Christmas is today, which is presents, presents and more presents! I was walking with Isla-Mae the other day and two boys were stood chatting, I could hear they were talking about what they wanted for Christmas, what upset me the most was the fact they were then comparing how many presents they each got and the value of each present! How upsetting that our children today see this as a competition and not only is this a bad view to have but this also places parents under pressure too.

I for one will not be stretching my budget to accommodate the commercialised Christmas that we have today! I will be gifting my friends and family with what my budget allows for. The gift in my eyes is about thought not price tag. Isla Mae gave me a leaf the other day and with it came the words "I love you mummy" to me this means more than any gift money could buy and if my budget buys this kind of response from my child then I am one happy mummy.

Single parents have a hard time through out the whole year struggling financially, feeling the stigma and trying to fit in. There is no shame in not being able to afford Christmas......love and company is all you need! I have come up with a few ideas for Christmas gifts on a budget that I hope will help some of you who are feeling the struggle this year and these are as follows:

  • Pound, pound and more pound stores! You will be surprised what gifts can be found in the pound store.
  • Charity shops/boot sales/selling groups online- are great sources for gifts, second hand is not to be knocked and you will be surprised at the quality of gifts that can be found today.
  • Shop early- prepare for Christmas 2014 by grabbing reduced and sale items in January! Keeping a box of gifts in your wardrobe and topping it up gradually through the year, spreads the cost and eases the stress.
  • Special offers- keep your eyes open in stores at the special offers

Remember Christmas is to be enjoyed not feared! If you are feeling stressed or are going to be spending Christmas alone and feel very lonely and lost then PLEASE message me as I would love to chat to you. Let's make this Christmas a magical one for our children.

Love to you all

Tara and Dream Bear xxx

Monday, 18 November 2013

The Beginning

With a glass of red in one hand and a cigaret in the other, I have, after a few turbulent weeks finally found my bloggers mojo! It has taken me an evening of copious amounts of alcohol and close friends to reach my next blog.....the beginning!!

I guess in times when you are feeling so low that only yourself can describe as lost! Is the time when you have feelings such as being engulfed in a black cloud, where you feel you have no where to run but then realise that you have everything, everything you ever wanted or needed around you! My friends :) At times it can be hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel, to see where your future lies, but then suddenly it's like a light switch flickers on and you see that your destiny is a future from the current journey you are riding.

My journey started with that Teddy bear known as Dream Bear, the bear that has not only brought my daughter such happiness and comfort but also brought me a vast amount of love and reassurance! To some this may seem silly or even ridiculous however this Teddy Bear has become the glue and missing jigsaw puzzle to so many things in our life.

He is our guidance, our support, our friend, our family, our neighbour, our counsellor, best friend and soul mate. Dream Bear is our passion and he will continue to help us grow as a family and hopefully help other single parents.

From the the day I got my new bed from Dreams bed store, the teddy that was given to us free with that bed has given my daughter the extra support structure that she needed and lacked from another parent......her biological father.

Being a single mother I have always been passionate about the rights, advice, support and information that is available in such a crucial and hard role. It is my passion and aim to help other single parents in such positions to succeed, feel happy, loved and parent their child in the best way possible with the use of my wing man Dream Bear. I genuinely feel that there is a shortage in help for single parents as there is so much that goes with this label, such as depression, financial worry, social acceptance, emotional support, physical support such as funded childcare, abuse, relationship advice etc, my list could go on and on. Sometimes and not just single parents, go through such pain and will feel completely overwhelmed by certain circumstances, I want to open that communication channel where when in these situations a person can come to Dream Bear and feel like they have a friend :)

Dream Bear is a support network I have set up to help do just that. I have been overwhelmed by the feedback and messages I receive across the UK from single parents in similar situations, which each day gives me the acknowledgement and reassurance in knowing that I am doing the right job! It started with me writing (blogging) about my thoughts, feelings, behaviours and fears and has now travelled into the social media world with myself being made an official blogger for mumsnet and I am also having a website created where there will be a forum for single parents to chat, along with lots of information, advice, offers and lifestyle content. Dream bear is on a journey, we have a clear direction but with day to day life experiences and feedback from the public, we continue to evolve, heading in many directions. We have celebrity backing which helps us immensely and also confirms our worth.
Our beginning began the day I fell pregnant and continues to grow 4 years on!

If you would be interested in volunteering in anyway then please contact myself (Tara) on the Dream Bear Facebook page :) We would love your help! A special thanks here goes to all those who have helped me make this dream a reality! I love you all long time, you know who you are :)

Good evening guys and dolls
Tara & Dream Bear xxxxxxx

Thursday, 26 September 2013

I don't like today but I love you

I don't like today

I don't like today! I don't like the thoughts in my head, the feeling in my stomach and the things I have seen. I don't like today because I feel negative and I don't like myself. I don't like today because I feel I have not given my daughter any attention and I don't like today because I feel all this is due to one underlying factor and that is because I don't have a stable home and relationship where I feel loved. I don't like today because I am jealous of everyone around me, for what they have for who they have and what they are doing. I don't like today because I want to run away and I can't. I don't like today because I don't have what I want. I don't like today because I'm not rich and I want to be. I don't like today because today is a struggle and I am tired. I don't like today because someone was rude to me. I don't like today because I feel so lost.

I will love tomorrow because it is a new day. I will love tomorrow because I will be positive. I will love tomorrow because I have a great meeting arranged. I will love tomorrow because I will meet someone new. I will love tomorrow because I will learn something new. I will love tomorrow because I have survived another day, I will love tomorrow because I get to wake up to my beautiful daughter. I will love tomorrow because I have a fantastic life. I will love tomorrow because I am worthy of a great life. I will love tomorrow because I love myself. I will love tomorrow because of the people in my life. I will love tomorrow because I am grateful for the air I breathe and I will love tomorrow and every day after because I have the greatest gift of all man kind and that is my daughter who I created and who I unconditionally love and that is the most pure and fantastic thing over anything in this world.

Good night.


Lets talk about sex baby lets talk about you and me! So everyone does it, it is human nature yet we don't openly talk about it (unless in close circles of friends) so I thought I would write a blog about Sex.
First of all what is it? Sex is an activity between two consenting adults that involve the sexual organs ;) this can be between male and female or same sex couples. It is an activity that I am sure everyone will agree is extremely enjoyable with the right person. It is also that act that creates new life helping the world to go round. So throughout my life and reaching an age where I began to become sexually active I have learnt a lot about sex and have come to my own conclusions on what I think it is and should be about. I believe that the best sex comes with a connection and that sex with emotion is the best type. I'm sure it is safe to say that I have experienced what you would call a "one night stand" and looking back this was probably the most degrading and horrible sexual experience I have ever encountered. I guess you get to an age where you realise being celibate is far more satisfying then just sleeping with anyone for a moment of so called pleasure. Sex is a massive part of life and what someone interprets as their best experience will be totally different from someone else, however I do believe that you should trust someone and feel comfortable enough to perform such an intimate act. I would not necessarily say you have to love someone as that can develop later on in a relationship further down the line.
I've been having a chat recently with some friends about "swinging" not that any of us wish to participate in this but about people that do! With lots of documentaries on the TV and various advertisements around I find it very hard to comprehend how you can watch someone you are meant to "love" perform a sexual intimate act with another person! Do they really love each other? Is it a form of cheating? Could we even say its a form of self-harm? I for one would not wish to be involved in such behaviour and cannot understand the reasons why someone would. 

I am not sure I like the word "Sex" I feel this is more suited to one night stands and sexual experimenting. I find "making love" cringe worthy so I think I prefer the term "sleeping with someone" it also leaves more to the imagination.

I also believe that as much as we may joke about sex, it is an intimate act that should remain personal between two people. We all have that animal instinct that needs to scratch an itch but after having my daughter and becoming a single mum I have really started to appreciate the value of sex and to recognise that I only want that intimacy with someone who I potentially will end up with. My body is to be respected not abused and for a healthy mind we need a healthy body! 
I have been very fortunate in having a fantastic sexual experience where I felt butterflies and the feeling that I could not breathe with lust! What it taught me was that I won't settle for entering that situation with someone who makes me feel any less than they did. When you are a single parent it is very easy to grab a one night stand because you are craving attention, but that attention is short lived and the best feeling comes when you wake up still in that persons arms :)
Tara xxx

Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Innocent Minds

Today I had the greatest pleasure & privilege to be the first person to read my friends poem. This was no ordinary poem, this was a poem created from the emotions, thoughts & experiences of becoming a single father to two beautiful boys. Something I know would of been hard to share and open up about as a man. This poem is totally inspiring and beautifully written and I really believe he deserves to have this published. We are always hearing about single mothers so it is refreshing to have the perspective from a single father, especially in this context. So tonight a huge thank you goes to Richard Harvey, for not only sharing his story but for being a good friend and father :) I hope you get all what you deserve in life because you truly are a wonderful guy. Girls and boys I give you: Innocent Minds by Richard Harvey:

Innocent minds:

The Pain hit me so hard
Deep inside my heart
Day by day it grew
Taking away all I knew
Clotting my veins
Beating my brain
I was battling inside, just to stay sane

My life was on hold
No way to escape
I was crying inside
And starting to break

I had lost all that I knew
And thought my time was through
My head felt so numb
My body refused to run
Days were too long
Nights were too short
I was dying inside or so I thought

Hide away and be no one
Put up a barrier to everyone
That's how I felt
That's what I did
Hide all emotions to all that lived
No one will know
No will care
I'm alone in this world
Refusing to share

The guilt set in
Happiness was gone
I was stunned and alone
Lost in a world below the unknown

I tried so hard to find the way
The way to end every crying day
Scared to be free
From a life I thought was right for me

I couldn't find the way 
The way to break free
From all this pain, building up inside of me
I fought from inside to find me again
Tears, sadness was all I had gained
Days, weeks, years became so lame

Time had stopped 
Passed me by
I had become a single cry 
Lost in the dark far from the sun
This is where I found no one
I needed to realise this battle could be won
And that I was not the only one
In this situation feeling so numb

Deep down I knew this wasn't for me
Beneath the surface I was dying to break free
The help I needed was there for sure
Accepting this was harder than ever before

Throughout it all the innocent minds kept on
Keeping me battling when all felt wrong
Eyes deep with emotions
Hearts flowing with gold
Minds so pure
Story's un told
A thrive for life I felt was no more
This was the answer for me for sure

Without the innocent minds
Who knows where i would be
That love cleared the way
And showed me the path to stay

On that path I found just me
Not alone or sad 
But happy and ready to be free

I liked who I found
And took pride in what I was bound
Crushing the pain beneath the thumping strain
This was the way
The way to a happy end of day

They showed me the way 
The way to be me
Guided by the love that they shared so free
I took hold and prayed
I had reason to be brave
The same reason that made me feel so grey

I learnt I had more
More than ever before
A life so strong
One that will last forever long

That was my life
A life to provide
Provide for the ones that gave me reason to survive

I was happy again
Stronger than before
Proud of all the minds so pure
The smiles
The laughter
It all meant more
So much more than ever before

I swore I wouldn't look back
Positive and happy is what I lacked
Except to remember what it was that attacked
Back in the day when it all seemed so black

Now is my time 
My time to shine
Stay happy and continue to climb
Those are the words that will ring in my mind

I must not forget the bad times I survived
And the power from those who allowed me to thrive 
The innocent minds that change my time.
The minds that belong to two children I call mine.....

Tuesday, 24 September 2013

The journey is the best bit....

I recently had a friend say to me "enjoy the journey instead of longing for the destination" these words really stuck in my mind and I started to replay my whole life and all the great memories I have. As I started to remember certain aspects I tried to recall my thoughts and feelings at those times and what I could remember is that I was very happy. I then started to think about why I am now so keen on reaching certain goals or destinations without acknowledging or enjoying the current path I am on? Maybe it's a combination of things such as my age, my circumstances, my insecurities etc. whatever these reasons are her words have struck a cord with me and I now have really taken note!
Sometimes the things you want or the things you think you want are actually wrong for you. If you are so desperate for something that you don't have then it is probably not meant to be yours because if it was it would come easy and the obsession to reach the destination would not be there. We can all get so caught up in trying to achieve so much so quickly that we loose focus on how great and enjoyable our current path is. A lot of the time we won't reach a certain destination because life throws curve balls every now and then! This is when we need to embrace the good with the bad and enjoy the ride, even negatives become positives because they teach us new things and make us stronger people. When you are trying to escape your life because you feel overwhelmed it is all to easy to yearn to have the life of another, however no one is perfect and a life that may appear Rosie to the eye often has its own problems and is not necessarily suited to all people. As I sit and focus on what I have I realise that I have achieved a lot! I have studied at university and gained a BA Hons degree, I have visited many exotic countries, I have moved away from home, I have partied until I cannot party anymore! making the most amazing friends along the way and I have created a beautiful life, my daughter. Maybe it is because I have experienced all these wonderful things that I long for them once again! However at 30 it is time to get in the real world and stop trying to live a dream life. I am truly blessed with my daughter and although life is a struggle, whose isn't! I am on a journey that I am now enjoying, life throws the most random things at you at times and I am really experiencing some great new openings which I am grasping with both hands. Whatever our destination is I am really enjoying the ride whilst making fantastic connections. We are all in control of our own destiny and I am damn intent in spreading my wings and making the best of it.......

So my advice to you is this, don't get bogged down by feeling that happiness is only achieved by the destination, because most of our fondest memories have been our journeys to where we are now! Enjoy what you have and treat the people you have around you with respect. You never know what tomorrow holds. Keep those goals in mind and go for them :)

Tara xxxx

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Sunday, 22 September 2013

I want to run away

I want to run away
Sometimes I get that feeling where I can't breathe, as though I am held down by chains. I feel that no matter where I go or what I do I cannot escape my life. I guess this is a feeling experienced not only single parents but couples too! However as a single parent with hardly any family this feeling can become very overwhelming and scary at times.
I think it is safe to say this feeling has a huge impact on my life and mood. It affects not only my feelings but my thoughts and behaviours. When you get days like this it can be all too easy to feel alone and isolated but I know for a fact there are many more people out there feeling just the same. It is hard when you feel trapped and you are watching all your friends and family moving forward with their lives whilst you feel like time is standing still for you and no matter what you try to do you continue to move backwards not forwards.
Maybe this week has been a tougher than tough week for me for many reasons but I just feel like I want to run away. I love my daughter more than life itself but knowing I am solely responsible for her and knowing I now can't do certain things is really suffocating me at the moment. I feel overly tired, sad, unhappy and fat! Perhaps I need a good nights sleep but the fact remains my responsibility will still be waiting for me in the morning.
It is funny how if you put a full face of make up on, some nice clothes and dress your child accordingly you give of that air of "doing well" it is a great disguise for the troubles deep in the heart. All the material things in the world right now could not make up for the stability I long for and for the day I finally feel content and happy. I have a beautiful daughter yet I can't help but feel isolated, alone and held down in chains! As selfish as this may sound to some this is a true feeling that I am sure many others feel but are too embarrassed to admit to it.
How many other single parents out there feel the same? With over a quarter of the UK households (26%) belonging to single parents, which in numbers equate to 2million people, I reckon there are many who feel the same as me. I am not going to run away but I do strongly believe there should be a much bigger outreach and support network for single parents to help with feelings such as these and to establish a sense of community, care & advice. This is my aim with Dream Bear and will continue to be so until we reach it and it gets the recognition it deserves. I have been told by a few that my blogs are too personal or too out there, I however disagree. This is real life, I am not ashamed and am an honest person. I want my blogs to reach people in the same situations so that they can identify and not feel so alone. It is my life and I want to make something positive of it by helping others.
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Thank you Tara xxxxx

Friday, 30 August 2013

I have a psychic friend

So about six months ago I had the amazing pleasure of meeting a guy called Ryan Gooding! Ryan is a psychic medium and we first found each other by that little link known as a Hashtag! I was searching for a good psychic who may be able to help me with questions I had and also with my own sixth sense. Now people that know me well will know I am a very spiritual person, I am very into the secret and law of attraction and have also had the pleasure of seeing spirits from an early age.
I truly believe that we have the power if channeled correctly to bring certain circumstances and people into our world. Again through the law of attraction. When myself and Ryan made a connection it was very powerful and without divulging confidential information we had very strong connections. He has amazed me in many different ways, one in particular being a personal reading he gave me! He could not of been more spot on, with my path still continuing down the route he predicted.  One thing about Ryan, or maybe I should say many things about Ryan is that he is far more than a psychic medium! Firstly he is my friend who has let me into his little family, this family I describe as his wonderful partner and soon to be husband Darren, his lovely PA Linda and now his amazing crazy friend Rachel! He is warm, caring, generous, thoughtful, honest, genuine and trustworthy. When you are around Ryan and anyone who has been will know what I'm talking about here, he just makes you feel content, happy and safe. There is no falseness in his personality, he is a real man with a real gift. He also has a wicked sense of humour which he portrays through his readings and this just adds to the package in my opinion. He is a man anyone can click with.
So last night I had the pleasure of being guest at one of his events-an evening of clairvoyance at Trinity Park. I took one of my best friends Cuffie with me, as she too is a believer and was very keen to see Ryan's work and how he performs. I have never been to a show of this kind before, I had an idea on what it would be like but I was not prepared for what I was about to witness!! I think I should mention at this point that Ryan works with his spirit guide who is his dear friend Cathy that sadly passed a few years back, Cathy will be with Ryan when he is reading. So Ryan makes a grand entrance, confident, happy and full of energy, it is safe to say he lights a room up and you just seem to be drawn to him. He introduces the show and explains how he will perform as such that evening. It is not long before he is underway, working his way around the room selecting individuals who have spirits coming through for them. Now to say I was amazed makes it sound like I never believed, but what I mean is he just amazes me more and more every time I see him. He had three separate ladies reduced to tears because of the facts he was giving them, again for confidentiality reasons I cannot divulge these details. He knew finer details, he knew dates, relationship links, illnesses, cause of deaths etc my list could go on here. What I loved was how Cuffie sat and watched in complete shock :) I don't think she expected him to be as good as I had described.......genius does not even cover it! 
I feel so humble to know this man and feel grateful to have him in my life, which I really believe is for a reason. I feel proud to join him on his journey and that he is someone I can call my friend. I am particularly looking forward to watching Ryan and Darren get married, Darren is a massive and significant part of Ryan and although he is not the psychic I really feel that if it was not for Darren, Ryan would not be where he is today and the same goes for his wonderful PA Linda, she is a total gem and a great support unit for him. They all together make the perfect dream team.
So on this fine Friday I want to say a huge congratulations to the man who has not only changed so many people's lives but also transformed mine. I am truly grateful Ryan and I love you to bits xx If you would like to book Ryan for a reading then please visit  www.ryangooding.co.uk but get in quick as he is almost fully booked until Christmas!

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Life is a happy place

So my last few blogs have been quite heart felt and emotional, so it's time to man these blogs up and today I am writing about happiness! That's right I am actually going to bring some positivity and describe all the things I think make and contribute to a happy way of life.
What is happiness?! Well this is something I have really tried to grasp! Is it a destination, a direction, a state of mind, a feeling, a sense, or maybe a combination of all of these. Sometimes when we are busy we loose sight of the little things in life and get far too caught up with situations that don't deserve our time or energy, yet it is so easy to slip into this trap. When was the last time you woke up and thought wow I am alive, I can breathe, I have a roof over my head and family & friends who love and care for me?! My daughter recently picked a leaf for me from the the garden, this may sound significantly small however this small gesture gave me so much love and happiness that it was then that I realised happiness comes from the smallest of things.
It is so easy to walk around with a frown but why not turn that frown upside down and beam a radiant smile to all the people you pass that day, you will be surprised what a difference that makes! I always feel that laughter is a cure for most upsets. A good giggle with people you love can bring happiness to the heart and warm the soul, it is also a good way to bond. It is funny because I recently went on a night out and had someone bring me to tears through laughter, this then caught on to other people around us and before we knew it the whole room was laughing. 
Life is hard, in fact it is tough. Nothing comes easy and sometimes things you gain you quickly loose, but that is life and what doesn't break us only makes us stronger. Sometimes you can feel like you have the world on your shoulders but my motto is, if its not death then don't panic! I love this Buddhist quote "happiness does not depend on what you have or who you are, it solely relies on what you think" we can't always control situations or circumstances but we can control how we feel and act, and I for certain want to be feeling and thinking "happy". So I have put together a few tips for a happy life: 1) let go of your past, don't let it be your future 2) be who you want to be-think for yourself 3) positivity is key! Negative thoughts bring negative outcomes 4) everything happens for a reason, remember this 5) change is part of life, embrace it, learn from it & grow with it 6) care for the small things and the big things will happen as a result 7) form relationships, see the good in people, share and care with them 8) live your life with feeling and purpose, you can achieve that dream 9) take responsibility, accept your mistakes and learn from them 10) Smile, smiling releases endorphins that make you feel better instantly :) Happiness spreads with a smile so get your grin on people!! 
I also find that music is a great way to feel happy! The most upbeat songs can transform a mood or state of mind, Will Smith's Summertime always makes me smile!  Life is for living, don't take it too seriously and embrace the card you have been dealt!
I am off to be happy now and I hope you are too xxx

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

The father who walked away :(

Take a good look at those shoulders Tara because that is the last time you will ever see this man! Those were the words that whirled around in my head whilst laying in bed pregnant, scared, confused and poorly, whilst the man I loved stood in front of me, telling me that if I had a termination for him he would take me on holiday! He made it seem like such a treat for an act I was not sure I could carry out or want to do. As he turned to leave my bedroom and head to work, a sick ache filled the pit of my stomach as I knew I could not go through with a termination and therefore I was about to take the last glance at the man who had been the only guy to take my breath away! The man I adored and loved so much was also the man who was about to walk away from his daughter and never be seen again. How was I going to get through this!?
I was 8 weeks pregnant when I found out I was expecting. It had come as a huge shock, as I had just got back from a holiday in Miami where copious amounts of alcohol had been consumed and I was also taking the contraceptive pill. I was living in Rugby Warwickshire and had just received the great news that I had a new job in Birmingham with Social Services. I was living away from my family and friends and as you can imagine I felt completely alone. I always envisaged getting married, having children and living happily ever after. I guess this was a vision I had created and dreamed of due to my own family situation and growing up without my father. You could say I was very shocked when I found myself in a situation I took precautions to prevent. I must say that when I gave James the news that I was pregnant he was extremely good, he offered his support and said whatever decision I made he would stand by me, these were words that I was later to find out were a complete lie and front just to try and twist me into having a termination. Now I am not saying I am totally against abortion because I am not, however we all have our own beliefs and deal with situations differently. For me I could not go through with terminating this pregnancy. For James he could not go through with being a father and sadly that day in my flat was the last day I ever saw him.
Throughout being pregnant I battled a lot of demons, I was hurt, let down, angry, hormonal and in love. I had his baby growing inside me yet he wanted no part of her life. It made me very sad that his own mother who you would expect to have maternal instincts, was very nasty to me and also wanted nothing to do with her own grand daughter. I am no angel and whilst pregnant I said a lot of things that were uncalled for and behaved like a psychotic mad woman, however I was pregnant and I had been left to deal with this alone. On top of this my body was changing and I had no control or a partner to share the experience with. Every scan, every movement, every hiccup the baby made or every heart beat heard was experienced only by me and I was alone in this experience. There is nothing more painful then waiting to go into your scan whilst watching all the happy couples waiting excitedly to see their baby on the screen and there I was sat with my mum!! No matter how much people tell you they will be there for you, nothing can take that pain and humiliation away.
On the 8th April 2010 Isla-Mae Olivia Young was born weighing 8lbs 4oz at 21:45. I was fortunate enough to have my two great friends Sarah and Chloe at the birth to help me, although I am not sure who was more distressed me or them! But thank you girls for making it as fun and girly as possible. Well the next 4 days I spent recovering in hospital and trying to adapt to being a mum. It was a role I thought would come very easy to me, but in fact I struggled a lot at the start. My whole identity had changed, I had a duty and responsibility along with a loss of freedom. Whatever issues there were between me and James I had tried beyond belief to make him part of Isla-Mae's life, I wanted her to have a daddy but he still wanted no involvement. She is 3 years old now and he has never met her. I don't hate him, not only would it be a wasted emotion it would also be a selfish emotion, as he has his reasons I'm sure and as much as I had a choice, so did he. I hope that he is happy in his life and that no matter what, I will never bad mouth him to his daughter. Maybe one day he will be fortunate enough to have more children, I am sure he will realise just how wonderful it is to be a daddy. Our door is always open to him whatever our circumstances, I just hope that somewhere deep down inside he thinks about her because she asks about him.
I do truly believe that our life's path is mapped out for us, and in a way I truly am grateful for James walking away, it has made me a much stronger and independent person. I have learnt many things in the past 3 years, one of those being that he was not a person who was mapped into our world. I feel blessed to have my little girl and when she tells me she loves me and gives me a cuddle my heart melts. I get so much joy and feel so proud to watch her grow, develop and learn and you cannot put a price tag on that.  I don't know what the future holds but I do know that after 3 years of blood, sweat and tears I finally have found peace and happiness within myself. I can't answer how and why a father or mother will walk away from their responsibilities I can just be there and try to make up with double the love. If ever Isla-Mae wants to look for her biological father, then I will give her the information to see him however the sad fact remains that she will probably get a door shut in her face. For now my aim is to help and advice single parents through Dream Bear, a passion I have gained through my own experience. It is so important in situations like these to reach out to people, and no one should ever feel ashamed in doing so. 
xxxxx Tara

Monday, 12 August 2013

Our special friends.......

Ever stopped and thought about the friends you have in your life and how much they mean to you? I mean really thought about it!? Well today I have been doing that. From the day you are born you start to form relationships through interaction with other babies at playgroups etc. You then hit school age and wham you are faced with a class room full of new faces, a situation you have never had to deal with before. You start to learn what friendships are about, you push boundaries, you fall out only to make up again! You cry together you laugh together, you share secrets and support each other in times of need! Each week you have a new best friend, you play at each others houses, you may even have sleep overs! Before you know it you are growing not only in age and personality but also in closeness.
So what about all those friends that you didn't necessarily meet at school!? I have been very fortunate enough to meet friends that I class as family outside of school. These have been co-workers, friends of friends, people I have met on a night out, friends I have met on holiday, at university, neighbours and many more random situations! I feel that I really do have a close group of friends that mean the world to me. I am not sure about you, but I find that certain friends play different roles in my life and I don't mean this in a horrible way at all! I simply mean that there are my friends who I tend to have a great time partying the night away with, and then there will be my friends who have children and we tend to do more child friendly activities.
Sometimes I think we all fall into the trap of taking our friends for granted and it can take something bad to happen to realise you may have neglected that friendship or not made time to invest into the relationship. It can be extremely hard when we all have different lives and differing responsibilities, however a friendship should also mean that you don't have to speak everyday to know you are still a true friend. I have had the pleasure of travelling on some wonderful journeys that have been created through the friends I have and they have helped to shape the person I am today! I really do believe that we become who we surround ourselves by, therefore without sounding harsh if someone is making you unhappy or creating a negative atmosphere around you, then maybe it is time to reevaluate that friendship! True friends do not lie, cheat or bad mouth you, they encourage, support, listen, help and laugh with you :) 
I recently witnessed the marriage of two of my closets friends Cuffie and Carlton! Cuffie looked beautiful and the pair of them looked the picture of happiness throughout the day. Not only was it an honour to be part of their celebration, it was also wonderful to be reunited with some of our friendship group from years ago!
It was a beautiful day when they got married and at the wedding reception we were able to sit outside enjoying conversation and drinks whilst reminiscing about old times. It is days like this that you realise just how much your friends mean to you and how much you mean to them. Days like this that you can never recreate but ones that will leave the most treasured memories captured through our minds, hearts, souls and photographs!
As a single mum I have relied upon mr friends a great deal! They have supported both me and my daughter. They have helped me laugh when I have been sad, they have helped me become strong when I was weak! Just like the song Let Her Go by Passenger says...........never know you've been high until your feeling low! They have helped me stay focused, positive and driven! And even when I have hit rock bottom they still tolerated me! So I guess this blog is to all my beautiful and wonderful friends that are part of mine and my daughters life to say a huge thank you :) I may not always show my appreciation and at times I can be scatty and un-organised but I do care about each and every one of you dearly, without you all now I would not be here today! Never forget to take time to appreciate and be grateful in life, you never know what tomorrow holds!
Tara x

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Long, Lost and Found

Growing up I always felt like a part of me was missing! A feeling I can only describe to people who have never felt this, as a longing to find a piece of yourself that you feel is out there waiting to be found. Going through primary and secondary school I started to realise my missing link could possibly be down to the fact my father had never played a role in my life since the age of 3. This longing urge and desperation to have that role model of my dad in my world was always brought to my attention in situations where married couples were present. I can always remember quite vividly when round a friends house for tea, how I imagined being part of their family, just for a split second I felt fulfilled and complete! As strange as this may sound to some people, when lacking such a significant person sometimes imagination can help you escape into a world you yearn for!

There is that age old saying "don't wish your time away' yet here I am sat in front of the mirror looking at the reflection of a 30 year old female, wondering how I have reached this stage in my life in the blink of an eye. I have a 3 year old daughter who I adore with every bone in my body, yet I find myself carrying the pain of her biological father not wanting to be part of her life. How has this happened to me? How has she come to be in the same situation as her mother? How have I let this happen, how did it happen? I can't help believing the statistics that conclude history tends to repeat itself and that my daughter is a product of me! This is a feeling that I want to turn around and to create a life where she doesn't have to feel half a person like her mummy has for all these years. Although her father is absent (his own decision which I respect & accept) I hope one day I would have created a life for her in which she feels content, happy, fulfilled and loved.
So here I am one chilled evening watching long lost families. I always feel great emotion when watching this series as it is very close to my heart for many reasons! As one of my good friends Ryan Gooding who is a psychic medium told me, I have a great psychic ability, and call it six sense on this particular evening but something told me to look on friends reunited at my old account. With the way social media has evolved these days, I have not thought to go on there for a few years! So you can imagine my shock when I find a message in my inbox from my half brother some 6 months previous! It was 9pm at night but I wanted to meet him, he had left an email address for me to contact him on, however typically me, when I want something I do it there and then as I can't wait! So the following day I investigated possible addresses for my brother, knowing he was living in the same town I found this a very easy search and by 6pm I had an address! It is funny how you wait 30 years for something so special, awkward and almost dream like! Yet when it arrived I felt completely at ease! Maybe this is a sign that my missing link was finally slotting together! So I arrive at my brothers house, I stand outside and then walk past! I am asking myself- what if he has changed his mind about meeting me? What if he has a family who I upset by turning up? What if I meet him and feel nothing? It's a strange feeling to know that you have a biological family who you have not seen for 27 years and to then have to build feelings and a relationship from scratch. Before I could think anything else I had knocked on his door, there was no going back now and I waited nervously as a man answered the door! I can say at this point that I was very lucky as I got an extremely positive response, something that not everyone in my situation would have! Also I am sad to say that this is a response my daughter will never get from her biological paternal side, but this is their loss. That evening I gained 2 new half brothers Philip and David, a nephew Finley and my dad! 
Friends and family that know me personally will know that my father was 23 years older than my mum and therefore I am meeting my dad when he is aged 85 and living as a Chelsea pensioner. My half brother Philip is 51 so again between us all we have quite a big age gap. This doesn't make me feel embarrassed or ashamed but it makes me sad :( In fact I have a deep sadness as I now start to build a relationship with a man who may not be in my life for a very long time. How do I deal with this when the time comes? how have we lost 27 precious years of life together? Part of me feels strange calling him dad as it is a word I have never used to describe a man, I also feel panic in how much time we have left together but I am extremely happy and grateful that we do have this moment and that it is special. I have gained a great relationship with my half brother who is a complete punk covered in tattoos! I guess this is where my love for piercings and tattoos come from. In fact it is quite scary to see and feel how alike we both are even though our lives have been completely separate! I'm not sure what the future holds for us but I am a true believer in fate and the law of attraction. It was funny because again Ryan Gooding had given me a great reading into what was going on in my life and what is going to happen and so far everything he said is being completed! He is a great person in my life, positive and a trusted friend who helps me with situations like these and I am very grateful to him. For now I am continuing on my journey of filling in all those blanks and asking all the right questions, whilst filling my life with love, joy and happiness. I have now completed myself in finding my missing link and what I would say to anyone in this or a similar situation is that life is too short, you will not regret the things you did but more the things you didn't do! So reach out and find that person, you have nothing to lose and like me it could be the best thing to happen to you :)  If you ever need any advice or help then please feel free to contact me www.facebook.com/isladreambear 

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

Trying to be happy makes you unhappy.....

Now I was going to write a humorous blog this time round but instead I have opted for a topic I find very interesting and one that seems to have a lot of attention at the moment………happiness J What does happy feel like? What does happy mean? How do you know when you are happy? Can someone make you happy? Or maybe happiness is a state of mind? These are just some of the questions that pop into my head when I think of the term. Now having been on an emotional roller-coaster myself the past few years and also suffering with a form of depression, I found myself always trying to find a way to be happy! In fact I think it is fair to say I would go to any length to make this happen. I managed to convince myself that certain factors were contributing to my unhappiness, such as not having a partner to share my life with! I labelled myself unhappy. I would set myself high targets of things to achieve in the hope that once I reached them I would be happy……..however I managed to reach them and still felt half empty. This is when I started to think, are we all too caught up trying to be happy without realising we already are? And by setting ourselves unrealistic targets in order to achieve happiness are we therefore just making ourselves unhappy?

I think the realisation came one day when I decided that maybe I should pretend to be happy for a day and see how it goes! Kind of like a spot of acting I suppose. Well I soon discovered that it was actually quite easy and something I did not have to pretend to do. In fact it was so easy that I realised I was not acting but just being myself and that I had tricked my mind and almost convinced myself I was unhappy…….I had learned this behavior all by myself! No self- help book, counselor  life style coach was going to help me, all I needed to do was accept I was happy and live positively with gratitude for all that was in my life. As Buddha says “No one saves us but ourselves, no one can and no one may. We ourselves must walk the path” The path I have now been walking and continue to walk.

Happiness comes in all shapes and sizes, it is in the air we breathe, we can feel it through touch, we can taste it, we can smell it and through our senses we can create memories that we remember from sound, such as music, or smells such as perfumes, now how awesome is that! I am actually listening to a track right now that takes me back to a particular moment in my life, I feel, visualise and even smell the memories this song represent for me and in my gut I feel happy. Finer details of things that truly matter in life are sometimes pushed to one side as we all seem to live in a society where everyone is operating at 100 miles an hour, we are so busy and stressed out that we don’t notice or appreciate our surroundings and take time to absorb all that is around us. Let me ask you a couple of questions, when was the last time you walked down the street and said hello to the random person walking their dog? When was the last time you went into a restaurant with a massive smile on your face, bursting of energy? When was the last time you stopped just to talk to a passer-by? I bet you can’t remember, in fact I bet you probably never have! And the reason for this is because if you did there would be a group of people laughing and waiting to call you strange or weird, because today society seems to identify and accept a far more miserable or rude person than someone who is bubbly and full of enthusiasm……..now how sad is that!

My point is this, no one but yourself can make you happy and everyone has bad days J So wear a big smile on your face, make friends, take exercise regularly, have a healthy diet, get enough sleep, find a job you love doing and embrace every opportunity you get in life. If something is bringing you down or not flowing naturally then have the strength to free yourself and concentrate on the things which bring positivity to your life. I would much rather lead a happy life than a miserable one. Trust your gut instinct as this is always right.

Monday, 6 May 2013

Inside out, outside in life of me……

Almost 4 years ago I found myself in a situation that I would consider my worst nightmare and one I never envisaged myself being in! I was 8 weeks pregnant and the biological father was about to walk out of my flat to never be seen again! This was the man who stole my heart, faith, trust and crushed me in one single act. I was scared, frightened and my body was changing every second of every minute and I had no control over it. I felt like my life had ended yet I was developing another human being inside me, this battle between my emotions and staying positive and healthy was extremely hard. So many thoughts were running through my head…..”Why and how can he just leave?” “How am I going to cope?” “I will never get over this!” all of these questions were in my mind all day every day and I had to deal with these on a daily basis, whilst my hormones were at an all-time high and my body was stretching and expanding and changing in ways only mothers understand.

As the nine months of my pregnancy developed I had to go through the grieving process for the father of my child, and whilst his cruel act is enough to put anyone off their food, he was the love of my life and I was carrying his daughter. Each day during my pregnancy it would become a bit easier and my feelings would change from hurt to anger and back again. On the 8th April 2010 Isla-Mae Olivia Young was born in Essex weighing an ironic 8lb 4oz! My feelings of love, happiness and relief all came crashing down on me the minute I saw her little face, this was it I thought, now the baby had been born I could move on and build our lives, however I was not prepared for what was about to hit me…….Postnatal Depression! I don’t think you ever realise how deep in depression you are until someone tells you they are worried about you or you do something stupid. Shame, guilt, sadness, anger, sleep deprivation are just some of the symptoms that come hand in hand with this health issue. I think the turning point for me came when one evening I drove to my local supermarket to do my weekly shop and instead of parking I drove straight into the car park and back out again without stopping! The sheer panic of getting out of the car hit me, and I got home and broke down. There is no shame in admitting you are suffering, there is no shame in admitting you have Postnatal Depression, and there is no shame in seeking help.

If I look back now on this period in my life it is like a foggy haze. I think it is fair to say I was so deep in my emotions that I now have no memory of the state of mind I was then in. Once I realised I needed help I did the obvious and spoke to my GP who I must say is an amazing Doctor. I did what most women do and started on a course of anti-depressants which at first really helped. The issue with these are that they don’t target the issue that is causing the depression in the first place. So I then started reading self-help books, I read positive quotes, saw mediums, looked at different religions…….I guess I was desperate to heal. I then started to look at my life; I started backwards at all I had lost and all I had gained along the way and at what I wanted to achieve. It then dawned on me that no pills, self-help books or words of wisdom were going to cure me, I was! Ever wondered how certain people make such a success of their life?! Well they did so because they believed in themselves, they trusted their instincts and they believed in their dream. It was then that I stopped taking anti-depressants, I binned the books and I set a goal…….the goal was to be back in employment earning a good wage doing a job I loved, which in turn could support me and my daughter. 1.5 years on I am now joint partner with an amazing lady called Tanya and we run a successful Social Media company. I have started my dream project called Dream Bear which supports single parents, I have a lovely home that me and my daughter feel very content in and I have an amazing support network of family and friends. I have achieved and excelled in certain work projects which have not only given me a great deal of confidence and a sense of achievement but have helped me find myself again. So I guess my message is this……..when and if you are feeling down, believe in yourself, throw away any negatives around you, set a goal and go and get it, because the only person that is stopping you and who will help you is yourself!

I hope you enjoyed my blog, please visit and like my page http://www.facebook.com/Isladreambear?ref=hl

Friday, 3 May 2013

Patrick Star Shape

Early mornings have become the norm to me these days! In fact waking up after 6am is now considered a luxury in my house! Weekends spent in bed recovering from a hangover whilst munching on a McDonalds to boost my energy levels are something of a vague memory. Instead I am now woken to the piercing sound of the word "JUICE"!! Now to some this may sound familiar, however to me this is like a jolt from the blue.......and so my day begins.

As a single mother who works full time, an early routine is a must and can be easily disrupted by the slightest interruption. My normal routine is to give my daughter a drink and put her favorite selection of TV programmes on whilst I try to get myself sorted and ready for the day. This once used to take me hours but now takes me a spritely 30 minutes, an art I have down to a tee. However it seems no matter how quickly I get myself ready I am never prepared for the curve ball that is thrown in by my 3 year old daughter. The first task and I say task as this is not a simple nor calm transaction, is asking my daughter to get dressed. You would have thought I had asked her to do Algebra by her reaction of "NO" and the stamping of feet! This then soon turns into a full blown wrestling match whilst I build up a sweat of frustration transferring me into a female version of Lee Evans! This is not the executive look I was going for. Once the situation has calmed and we have one dressed little lady and one electrocuted mad woman the second task is upon me of brushing her hair! Now I must say this is starting to get better, and with a few "naughty" bribes I manage to comb her hair into a ponytail......happy days.

So we are set and ready to leave and whilst I grab all the necessities needed for the day and load up the car I then have to scrape my daughter off the television which then again turns into a protest of "it's not finished yet Mummy". By the time we walk out the door and with my child wanting to run half way down the street I am just about ready for A) Bed and B) a Nervous Breakdown! Now at this point you must be thinking "she is over the worst" and yes if I was reading this then I would probably be thinking the same, however the finale is about to come......So I ask my daughter to get into her car seat "No Mummy" she says! We then stand there having a Mexican stand off for the next ten minutes until I am forced to pick her up and put her into the seat, now this is when I learnt what the "Patrick Star Shape" was! and boy does it take all your force and patience to deal with it. As I put my daughter into her seat she does exactly the title of this blog. I never knew such a small young child could be so strong and so determined but yet she proves me wrong every time.

These early morning routines are just part of the norm for single parents yet can have such a huge impact on a you're working day. I often sit down after a hard day wondering "am I the only one who does this?" and is it all worth it, then I go upstairs to see my sleeping beauty and with a melting heart I realise it is. So, who else has experienced the "Patrick Star Shape?" Do you have mornings filled of stress and shouting? Maybe you have a great morning routine you would like to share......If so I would love to hear. To all you single parent's out there, you are not alone and never will be! Reach out, there is always someone out there who shares the same experiences as you.