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Shoes, Getting Healthy and Lady Luck

5 Mar

I LOVE shoes. I only have two feet, but I have more shoes than I know what to do with. I have SIX pairs of the same shoes. I have them in black with white stripes, white with green stripes, white with blue stripes, blue with green stripes, blue stripes on  lime green and pink with blue stripes. Shoes are my thang.

Though I’m not a mom (YET!) I am part of an online, social media group of totally kick ass women called Mamavation. Mamavation is all about women/moms supporting, encouraging, helping each other in their battle of the bulge. In getting HEALTHY– for themselves, for their kids, for their spouses. Mamavation promotes healthy lifestyles, food choices and exercise. It’s pretty much amazing and the women involved are beyond amazing.

What in the world do shoes and Mamavation have in common? I’m so glad you asked! Mamavation is teaming up with Earthies to give away some shoes based on blog posts about being lucky.

I’m always lucky. I wake up every morning. I’m healthy. I’m happy. I have a job that pays the bills AND that I enjoy. I have a roof over my head. I have two families that love me. I have three fabulous younger sisters. I have two sets of brothers and sisters-in-law that aren’t too shabby either. Husband’s epilepsy is under control 99.9% of the time. I have a loving, caring, compassionate, hardworking husband who knows all my flaws but married and loves me anyway. I am lucky EVERY. SINGLE. DAY.

BUT! December 11, 2008 will forever be one of the luckiest days of my life. Without December 11, 2008 the other luckiest day of my life never would have happened.


Thanksgiving ’08 my mom slipped on some ice, fell and broke her leg. Crutches, a broken leg, Michigan winters and little children at school are not a great combo. Mom wasn’t going anywhere, but she had daughters and a husband home on break so she was well taken care of. Mom was doing her best to maneuver with a big ol’ cast, crutches, three of her four kids, a husband and a dog underfoot. Until two weeks after she fell. Mom got up to use the bathroom (the ONE thing no one else could do for her), collapsed and earned herself another trip to the hospital, this time via ambulance. Mom had a pulmonary embolism- a blood clot from being inactive and medications she was on that traveled to her lungs.

I almost lost my Mommy.

Tuesday, December 11, 2008 my mom was discharged from the hospital and went back home.

While my mom was in the hospital my boyfriend was pestering me about my plans for the weekend. I didn’t have any, my mom was in the hospital! I have a serious case of  Oldest Child Syndrome. The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem. I had a full-time job, I didn’t live at home, but I still needed wanted to make sure things were taken care of at home. 

Mom ended up coming home on a Tuesday, a day that I worked 2-10p. I had no plans to see my exhausted and recuperating mother. Boyfriend and I could only spend time together on weekends due to our work schedules, so I was totally surprised when he asked me to stop by his apartment on my way home.

When I got to Boyfriend’s he was awake and sitting in his living room. Weird. ESPN was blaring. Not weird. Boyfriend was sitting on the couch instead of His Chair. Weird. Boyfriend wouldn’t look at me. Weird. The whole thing felt really weird to me. Then he starts talking to the wall.

Boyfriend- Um, I’ve been doing a lot of thinking lately. I, uh… I’ve been thinking about my past and how I can’t change that, but I really want to change my future. I think it’s time to make some really big, life altering decisions.

Are you kidding me?! I almost lose my mom and THE DAY she comes home this jackhole is dumping me?!?! He can sit there and watch stupid ESPN all he wants. I’m not saying a single word. If he really wants to break up, I’m not going to make it easy on him. 


Boyfriend- I know it’s a few weeks early, but can I give you your Christmas present?

Christmas present? This is the weirdest break up I’ve ever been a part of.

 Me- Um, sure. I guess.

*Hands me a velvet box he had shoved between the couch cushions.*

Me- Oh, Boyfriend! You didn’t have to get me earrings!

Then I open the box to see the most beautiful, gorgeous, sparking ring I’ve ever seen.

Another long pause as I’m mentally kicking myself. Seriously, Laura?! Earrings!? What on EARTH possessed you to think earrings? Has Disney taught you nothing!? I KNEW he wasn’t a jackhole!

Boyfriend- So, when should we get married?!

*Insert screaming, grins and lots and lots of kisses*

Me- Holy crap, I have to call my mom.

Fiance- Can’t that wait until tomorrow?

Me- Excuse me, what?!?! No it can’t wait until tomorrow. THIS. IS. NEWS.

Fiance- She did just come home from the hospital today.

Me- I have to tell my mom first.

Then the phone calls started. I called my sister’s cell phone to see if Mom was awake. After shaking off the third degree on why I sounded weird, my sister tells me Mom IS awake.

I called the house phone, asked to talk to Mom.


Mom- Like an engagement ring kind of ring?

Various family members- Laura got a ring?!

Me- Yep, like an engagement kind of ring!

Mom- Woooooooooooooooooooooow!!!

Family- What? What!

Mom- Boyfriend gave Laura an engagement ring!

Family/Mom/Me- WOOOOOOOOW!!!!!!!!!!! (Repeat 984,354,852,196,574,325 times)

Fiance- Geesh, women!


Fast forward exactly seven months.

In seven months Boyfriend became Fiance to ultimately become Hubster.


December 11, 2008 will forever be one of the luckiest days of my life.

Mom came home after almost losing her life.

Brian and I became engaged.

I DIDN’T send my mother back to the hospital when I told her I was getting married.

Brian and I got married and are building a life together.

I have my health, my happiness and I’m surrounded with love. You really can’t get any more lucky than that.



I wrote this blog post while participating in the Bookieboo and “Earthies Wants You to Feel Lucky” blogging program, making me eligible to win a pair of Earthies shoes and American Express Gift Cards. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”


Mamavation Week 7

28 Feb

This may be the most difficult post I’ve ever written. Emotionally. Physically. Mentally.

I’ve toyed with writing this post for weeks. I think I’m finally in the right place to write it and actually hit publish.

My weight has been my armor. My impenetrable wall. My protector. The thing that says to world, “Do not open. Damaged goods.”

As early as I can remember until I was 10, I went to a babysitter. The sitter had two sons who were older than I was. Her oldest son abused and molested me. I thought all kids played doctor with no clothes on. I didn’t realize all the touching, poking, prodding wasn’t what everyone else was doing. I thought everyone had code words to let me know how and where the ‘doctor’ was going to touch them.

Attention from boys was how I knew I was worth something. In high school I was a flirt, a tease, wore tight-fitting, low cut tops. And I got a lot of attention. I had a small waist and big boobs. And I showed it all off. I left nothing to the imagination and I got lots of attention for it. To me, attention meant love.

In 2004 I met X. He was so good-looking and he paid attention to me. He was perfect. I feel head over heels in what I thought was love. He was so perfect and I was SO undeserving. I was set on doing anything and everything I could to keep this perfect man happy. I would wear what he wanted. Be what size he wanted. Talked to who he let me talk to. Ate only what and when X  allowed me to eat. Wore makeup when I around him, but not around anyone else. I did everything he asked me to.

It wasn’t enough. He cheated on me with someone significantly older. I thought I wasn’t doing something right. He wasn’t paying attention to me. He didn’t love me anymore and I was devastated. I tripled my efforts to be what X wanted me to be. I spent all my time with him. I stopped hanging out with the few friends I had left. I didn’t eat so I could be skinnier and more attractive to him. If he wanted me to grow a third arm out of my butt I was going to do everything I could to make it happen.

Eleven months later, something finally clicked. I’d had enough of his emotional abuse. I was fed up with him telling me I was fat, I needed to lose weight or he was going to cheat again (which he never stopped doing).  The 652,357,419,851,687th time my mom told me I deserved better I believed her. I broke up with X just before I was set to move to Texas from Michigan with him.

Attention still equalled love in my mind. I went through boyfriends like they were Kleenex. I was young and attractive. I fell in and out of love with boy after boy. Then I met Y. He didn’t take it to well when I decided to move on. He told me in detail why and how he was going to kill me. He was going to get away with it because no one cared enough about a stupid slut like me to miss me or report anything.

That was the final straw. If love was attention like this, I didn’t want anyone to love me. So I ate. I ate my feelings. I ate so I wouldn’t be attractive to guys and wouldn’t have to put up with the way they were treating me.I didn’t want to be potentially desirable and end up in the same situation I’d been in time and time again. I went from 130 lbs to 225 lbs in less than 4 years.

December of 2007 I met Brian. I’d been single for over two years and I certainly wasn’t looking for a relationship. We started hanging out as friends and things just blossomed from there. December 11, 2008 he asked me to marry him. July 11, 2009 I became his wife. Never once have I doubted the sincerity of Brian’s feelings for me. Brian has shown me so much about healthy relationships and the difference between lust and love. He’s shown me I’m worth loving time and time again.

I’m finally starting to love myself.

Loving myself means I can ditch the fat armor. Loving myself means being HEALTHY. For Brian. Our future. Our kids.  And myself.

Ultimately it’s up to me. I’m the one that has to put up or shut up. No one else can do it for me. I’m taking baby steps toward a healthier version of myself, but I’m afraid I can’t do it alone. I’m going to slip back into old habits. Old ways of thinking.  That’s where Mamavation comes in. The love and support this group of women gives is amazing. If I have an off day or week, it’s okay. They still care. They help me pick myself up, dust off and start again. I’ve never personally met them, but we’re all fighting our own battles to get healthy and they GET it. To each and every member of Mamavation, THANK YOU! Thank you for you compassion and faith in me. You mean more to me than you can ever possibly know.


23 Feb

I’m branching out. I’ve started a new blog. I’m not going to stop writing here. 

The new blog is more balls to the wall, a little more adult, sarcastic, honest and  peppered with actual four letter words. It’s basically the R rated version of SmallWorld.  If you’re intersted in reading, click  here.

Holy Ego Boost! I’ve Won and AWARD!

3 Feb

Shelley aka @momma_oz on twitter and bloggess behind Slightly Off Kilter ( I don’t know how to make a link, but I’ll learn someday!)  gave me an award!

I’m BEYOND honored to have been given this award! Thank you, Shelley! This is quite the ego boost!

This award comes with responsibilites.

  • Post and link back to the person who gave you this award. (If I knew how!)
  • Share 7 things about yourself.  
  • Pass the award on to 10 recently discovered great bloggers (or as many as you can).
  • Contact these bloggers and tell them they’ve won!
  • Seven things about me.

    1. I’m the oldest of four daughters. Melissa is 21, Abbey is 18 and Hannah is 15. People used to think I was Hannah’s mom when we would go on ‘Sister Dates’ and this was before Teen Mom! I’m also the youngest of my brothers and sisters-in-law. In the married family our ages are 30, 29, 28, 27, 26 and 25. Raaaaaaaaaandom!

    2. I’m new to blogging and twitter, but I’m a self diagnosed facebook addict. You can find me as LoCiaravino on twitter and Laura Ciararavino on facebook.

    3. I have gained a whopping 70 pounds since graduating from high school in 2004. Ouch! Holy unicorn turds… I can’t quite believe I just posted that on the internet.

    4. Sarcasm is my first language and English is my second. That being said, I wish sarcasm was easier to recognize over the internet. I’ve gotten myself into more than a few scrapes with unrealized sarcasm.

    5. I’ve grown just over three feet MY ENTIRE LIFE. I was 23.5 inches long when I was born. Twenty-five years later I stand at 5 feet 3 inches tall.

    6. I am HIGHLY accident prone. If I don’t have an x-ray every 6 months it’s a miracle. My senior year of high school broke my finger so badly, swinging on a rope, I had to have plastic surgery on my hand. I had two pins in my middle finger for 6 weeks. Raising my hand at the Christian school I went to made teachers take a second look. Driving was also an adventure!

    7. I sound like various farm animals when I laugh. I snort loudly and often. I also make another sound my husband ‘affectionately’ calls The Goose. I really do sound like a flock of Canadian Geese. Hubster loves it and tries to make me do it ALL. THE. TIME. I hate it. It’s loud and embarrassing, but I can’t do anything to stop it. I’ve tried.

    Blog friends

    1. Rachel (@rachhabs) of

    2. Amanda (@ihaveothaveyou) of

    3. Alexandra (@youngfabmama) of

    4. Megan (NcCarterFamily) of

    5. Robert (@LifeOfaNewDad) of

    6. Shelly (@twinpossible) of

    7. Patricia (@pawf1067) of

    8. Rachel (@Rachel_L)

    9. Violence UnSilenced (@ViolenceUnSilenced) of

    10. Pamela (@lotsOspermies) of

    I’m new to the blogging world, so these aren’t new blogs, just new to me. All are  awesome blogs. I would definitely recommend checking them out!


    17 Jan

    I’ve made the decision to take better care of myself. I’ve made some diet changes, but that’s not enough.

    I’m in need of a work out routine.

    I need some direction. The mamavation hazing on twitter is awesome, but I feel like there is more I can do to be helping myself.

    I get bored at the gym. I do the same thing over and over a few times and then stop going.

    Any suggestions on a fun, at home, whip my butt in to shape, regimented but not boring, make me cry for my momma, high energy, help me feel better about my body, make me hurt but I want to do it again work out?


    14 Jan

    I’m sick of being fat. I’ve BEEN sick of being fat. No matter what I did I couldn’t lose weight. I had other issues going on so I went to the doctor.

    Long story short, my body doesn’t know how to absorb insulin. If it’s not absorbed, it get stored. In order to store the insulin your body makes FAT CELLS! In your MIDDLE! So thaaaaaaaaaaaaaat’s why my pants size was going up. And up. And up. I could have “exercised 8 hours a day, eaten nothing but salads and never lost weight.” (God bless the doctor for saying that!)

    I’m now on meds that help my body absorb the insulin it makes. I’m not gaining weight, but I’m not losing it either. 

    Until now. I am now making a conscious decision to watch what I eat and get active. It started today.

    I got up this morning and did 30 minutes of aerobic exercise. And it felt good!

    Hubster and I went out to lunch.

    I didn’t order fries. Or a pop.

    I didn’t eat the entire sandwich.

    The world didn’t end.

    I was plesantly satisfied, not uncomfortably full.


    I was feeling so good about the exercise and eating choices, I made use of the Michigan weather and snow blowed (snow blew?) and shoveled the driveway. And I felt even better about myself.

    I know I won’t always be easy and I won’t always want to make better choices, but if it feels half as good tomorrow as it did today, it’ll be just a little bit easier.

     Here’s to Day 1 of healthier choices to a healthier and happier me!

    Hello world!

    12 Jan

    Welcome to This is your first post. Edit or delete it and start blogging!