She Crawled Into My Bathroom Stall…

She Crawled Into My Bathroom Stall | Sedruola Maruska

We were living in Miami at the time. Which means I was around eight years old.

I raised my hand.

“May I go to the bathroom?”

“Yes, Sedie, go ahead.”

It was a typical day. We were learning. Things were going fine, until I went to the bathroom.

I heard someone come in.

Then, she crawled under the partition, into my stall.

Her name was Sara. She was in my class. We were friends. It’s foggy, I was eight. We only lived in Miami for six months. I didn’t know her well, but she was my friend.

And here was my friend, Sara, standing in front of me, in my bathroom stall, pulling down her pants and showing me her vagina.

“What are you doing?!”

“Show me yours.”

“NO!”

“Come on?!”

“NO!”

I quickly got up, pulled my clothes together and tried to leave the stall.

She tried to kiss me.

“Stop!”

My eight year old self was confused. What happened? Why did she come into my stall? Why was she showing me her vagina? Why did she want to see mine?

Why did I feel scared? Why did I feel ashamed?

Get a Fresh Start!

I’ve never told that story before. As a matter of fact, I haven’t thought about that incident in a long time

It came to mind because the other day I was talking to my mom about my son. We were sharing about how open he still seems to be at thirteen.

Then I thought about Sara. About how I never told anyone what happened in that bathroom. How, I felt so ashamed and nervous afterwards.

Looking back, I wonder if Sara ever said anything to anyone either. She and I never talked about it. I didn’t tell on her. I didn’t tell anyone, ever. We moved.

As a mom I’d like to think I can protect my kids from hurt. I want to think that they’ll tell me what’s going on with them, by making sure I give them space to be fully open and honest.

But they’re not going to tell us everything. They’re not always going to say when they feel confused or frustrated. Especially if they feel ashamed or nervous.

They’re going to move on and pretend everything’s fine, or they’ll forget.

What happened with Sara? Did she keep crawling under partitions into stalls? Did she grow into herself and acknowledge that she was gay, or at least curious? Or, did she bury herself and her curiosity deep inside because of confusion?

I’ll never know.

Something I do know, our children will never tell us everything. Because when I think about it, I realize that I didn’t.

We didn’t, we don’t tell everything ourselves.

She Crawled Into My Bathroom Stall | Sedruola Maruska

I could have gone home and told my mom about this little girl that came into my bathroom stall. I didn’t. Which is why I’m not naïve enough to think my kids will tell me.

No matter how safe they feel in talking to me, and we work hard to make our home a safe space, they won’t. What I hope is they’ll learn to process and cope.

Until we’re able to process the reasons we keep ourselves buried, we’re destined to live in darkness. We can’t be upset at our children for not sharing everything with us, when we don’t share everything with ourselves.

Homeschooling my daughter the other day, we worked on a reading comprehension activity. I looked at her work and noticed a couple of wrong answers so I sent her back to review. She reviewed then brought it back. I glanced and started to tell her that what she did was wrong as she started to get emotional.

When I looked closer, I was wrong. I didn’t take the time to look closely, thinking I already knew what I was doing, and I was correcting what she’d done, when it was already correct.

I looked at her teary eyes and said “I’m sorry, I was wrong.”

But I didn’t stop there. I want to empower her to speak up so I said “it’s okay to tell me if I’m wrong. I will be wrong sometimes. Okay? No matter who it is, they can be wrong. If you know you’re right, speak up.”

She nodded, smiled and we moved on. What I’m hoping she’ll learn is, even if she’s not willing to tell me everything, she will speak up for herself and process outwardly if necessary.

Click Here if you’re ready to be your best?

As we mature the extent we allow ourselves to learn and grow is the extent we’ll be able to allow others around us to learn and grow.

We’re not called to live anyone else’s life, even our children’s. What we’re called to do is be and project the best versions of ourselves. That’s how we empower ourselves, our children and our loved ones to be the very best of themselves.

Then, when someone does crawl into their bathroom stall, they’re equipped to handle, process and move beyond that situation.

Transformation – Part 1: The Hospital

Sedruola Maruska | Personal Development Coach

We’re all in a state of transformation. As we move through life, people, events, traumas and triumphs mold and change us. Of the many stories that shape us, there are usually a few that stand out as pivotal points in our history.

I’m sitting to write this story. I’m distracted. Not by important things, but by anything that will help me procrastinate. That’s why I feel the best way to share my story is in parts. I’m anxious. I have chills, and I know I’m going to shed tears. But nothing worth doing is ever easy.

I know how hard it is to forge ahead when you come upon the hard stuff. Which is why I to do it. To help you, I must also help myself

“I believe every woman is brilliant! Not smart brilliant, but the glittering, sparkly, striking, luminous type of brilliant. But for many, along life’s bumpy path, that brilliance is dulled, dimmed or becomes lackluster and sadly imperceptible.”

– Sedruola Maruska

The core of this story is why I do what I do. I’m hoping it’ll inspire your brilliance.

How to Discover Your Brilliance

Pregnant

I’m 27, 19 weeks pregnant and lying in the Trendelenburg position in the hospital.

My cervix dilated 4 cm and my amniotic sack is hanging. Until my amniotic sack decides to retreat so my doctor can perform a cervical cerclage (stitch my cervix closed) I lay in this 30 degree inverted position.

Head down, legs up. It’s to help my amniotic sac retreat, but it’s a recipe for heartburn. The only time I’m allowed to sit up, and only for 30 minutes at a time, is when I’m eating. That means, I’m dependent on my nurses to bring me a bedpan as needed.

Transformation - Part 1: The Hospital

When my “upside down” position begins to take hold I’m no longer able to pee into the bedpan so a catheter goes in.

After two weeks of laying there I promise a few things:

  • I’ll lay there for the next 6 months if it means my baby will survive
  • I’ll love my daughter and be the best mom ever so she never misses not having a father
  • No matter what happens, I’m going home with my mom, who’s there with me, to start over and do better.

You see, I’m filled with shame. My baby’s father’s married to someone else. I’m ashamed because I knew better but I didn’t do better.

My Worst Mother-Daughter Conversation To Date

Delivery, Lights Out

Hours after making those three decisions, my water breaks and I go into active labor.

Because I’m now at 21-weeks and she’s not stillborn, I have to deliver my baby naturally. No meds, because there’s no time. Remember, I was already 4 cm dilated when I got to the hospital.

My 21 week old baby girl cannot survive being birthed 19 weeks early. So only a few moments after entering this world, she leaves.

A few hours after delivery the nurse asks if I want to see my baby. Yes.

She brings me this tiny little lifeless human wrapped in what seemed like a huge blanket and I hold her. Crying. Her name is Iliana Ciel and she’s my angel.

I sit with her for some time, I can’t quite remember how long. Then I call the nurse, kiss my angel’s tiny little forehead, hand her over to the nurse and never see her again.

Unable to fulfill 2 of my promises I stick to the third and leave with my mom to go home and spend the next three months doing nothing.

I’m home, sad, hurt, ashamed and healing. I need to get back to being the “good” daughter I’d always been before my “bad” decision.

Subconsciously I decide I don’t deserve greatness, I’m not worthy of what I want. My brilliance goes dark. My transformation foundation is set.


Change your life: How to stop reacting and take action

Change Your Life | Sedruola Maruska

It’s spring 2016. I’m getting ready to go to my son’s soccer game. I pull on a pair of ‘mommy’ sweats and a sweatshirt and start to leave the room when I catch a reflection. Mine, I think. “Is that me? NO WAY!” I run back into my closet, put on some jeans and a fun t-shirt and go. That was the beginning of the end. . . .

The end of me, walking through life without intention and without purpose, but just existing. That’s when the feeling of wanting to take back my life began. What about you? Has your “Awakening” happened yet?

With life as uncertain as it is right now, deciding to take charge of your life is daunting. But if you’re feeling like now is the time, listen to that inner calling. Maybe you’re not sure where to start, but you have this nagging feeling that you’ve been going with the flow for too long. That’s what I felt that morning before soccer. I thought “who is that? What’s she doing?”

Are you failing at life?

The good news, there’s no right way to start. The key, do something. Taking action, any action, will motivate you to take more action and before you know it you’ve completely transformed your life!

Today I want to give you a few steps you can take to change your life. You may not feel the need to change the way I did. Mine was a real slap in the face wake up call. But that nagging you feel, deserves exploration.

As you continue reading, keep an open mind and heart and know, I share this in love and with a deep desire to see you become your very best.

Change Your Life: How to stop reacting and take action | Sedruola Maruska

Set Goals

I can’t express to you how important it is to have clear actionable goals. Goals give you a map or blueprint for where you want to go and what you want to do. Making any type of change means setting goals.

Step 1 – Look at your current situation and decide where you want to go. If you’re feeling frustrated with your life find out why by asking yourself:

  • What makes me sad right now when I look at my life?
  • What scares me about changing my life?
  • What passions did I have growing up?
  • What do I feel I’m missing in my life?
  • What do I really want?
  • What’s most important to me right now in my life?

When you go through this list of questions be honest. Be brutally honest with yourself about the answers. Write the answers in a Journal where you can refer to them over and over again.

Writing your answers and reviewing them will motivate you to make a plan for your future. As you get clearer, build on your answers until you’ve created a foundation for your planning.

Then, write out some tentative goals. Start with a long-term goal, like where you see yourself in five years. Then work backwards. Decide on short-term goals for the next year that’ll help you move toward your five-year goal. Each day, week or month, write out small tasks to help you along the way. Always keeping your large goal in mind.

Make Changes

Once you have a tentative goal plan, it’ll be easier to take intentional action. You’ll be able to start making changes that’ll add up to a big transformation. Now’s the best time to change the way you do life. The best way to know what to change is to look at your list of goals for inspiration.

Swamped to Serene in 30 Days

Do something from your list every day. Why? Because it’ll help you get to your end goal faster and easier. Look for different ways to take action. Try new things and meet new people. Anything that moves you from your comfort zone and toward where you want to be is good.  

Let Things & People Go

The hardest part about making any significant change in your life is letting some things, and people go. What you’ll find is that some friends and loved ones won’t react well to the changes you’re making. They’ll have opinions about everything you do. They may even be discouraging.

Remember, people in your life will react because change is hard and scary for them too. Taking time to communicate what you’re doing and why will go a long way to helping those who are unsure, either support or continue to challenge your choice. Take note of what’s happening and act accordingly. If you’re not ready to let go of someone in your life entirely, set boundaries to protect your time and space.

Remember, every step counts no matter how small. What’s important is that you do something.

Nothing changes in your life until you do.

Your action steps to get started on changing your life are:

  • Answer questions about your life
  • Write out a 5-Year goal
  • Write out a 1-Year goal that relates to the 5-year goal
  • Write out smaller steps along the way
  • Stay aware of people, habits and things that don’t line up with your goals