I want to hear YOUR stories!

Hey everyone!

This will be short and sweet.  I have shared my story and I believe yours is just as important, so now I want to hear from YOU and feature you on my blog.  I will be reading comments, taking messages via my Facebook page and Twitter and selecting the very first person (or people) to feature!  You can also send me a tweet or leave a comment with your contact information as to why you think your story should be heard! We will work together to create a beautiful post just for you. This could be a perfect way to be heard and say everything you’ve always wanted to.  You can remain anonymous as well, if you’d like.  I look forward to hearing from you!!!

Relationships, new job and real life

I’m sorry, guys.

I can’t believe I let it hit one month before I did another blog post.  I said I was going to be more consistent, right?  I really want to pick up writing again, because I love sharing my happiness on my good days and it helps to let the feelings pour out on my bad days.

Well, as of right now, I am a little over 17 weeks along (the photo above is of my 16 week belly). I have yet to really feel the baby completely move.  He seemed so active in the 13 week sonogram and I don’t remember “seeing” Callie move that much, but I definitely felt her.  Oh well.  He is healthy and has a strong little heartbeat going.

I think it’s amazing that now he can hear sounds and voices, including my heartbeat. Ahhh.  I love him so much already, but we have yet to pick out a name.  We have a few choices, but the ones that have stuck out to us the most are Phoenix, Asher and Levi (compliments of Callie, who is still very excited to be welcoming a little brother.) I think it’s going to be Phoenix Levi, but things could change!

As far as everything else goes, it has been a little rough for my uncertainty of the future drives me nuts.  Last you really heard from me, I had just graduated college.  Shortly after, real life set in and that included student loan debt.  I don’t have more than the average student (around 35k), but 15,000 of that was from my one semester in New York and the rest is interest! See, at the time I wasn’t very savvy about all that stuff and I let it accrue, accrue, accrue.  My point is that Justin and I have always jumped into moving in together and are used to doing things completely, backwards, so I felt the best decision was to move out.  I ended up moving home to pay my debts and save some money.  Little did I know I would end up getting pregnant with little man (whoopsies, backwards again) so we are a little bit in limbo about what we are going to do and it stresses me out.  But, would I be Ashley if I didn’t stress out? Just kidding.

I know my last statement will incur some judgment.  I have seen the comments throughout the Web and some of them hold truth, while others are straight cruel.  Yes, we haven’t always made the best of choices, but what matters is what we are doing now to make sure we do things correctly.  God has been ever so gracious as to bless us with a baby boy and by giving us a second chance to redeem ourselves, baby or not. We are actively working on ourselves, our relationship with the Lord and our relationship as one.  The older I get, the more I realize that relationships are hard work and that you can’t jump up and leave when it does get challenging.  As wrong and selfish as I am, I have realized that relationships will bring out sides of you that you never knew you had or that you thought you had overcome and stored away “forever.” It’s how you STOP, pray and handle the situation that will bring you closer to God and make you more like Him.  A relationship can be the most rewarding part of your life, if you let it be. But like I said, I’m working on it and being patient with the other person is a must.

However, it is my lack of patience that kills me in all ways – with other people (relationships as described above) and with my future.  I did rush into applying and accepting a new job and kind of missing my old one.  Don’t get me wrong, I’m really excited, but it has made me realize that jumping into things or making hasty decisions has really added unneeded stress to my life.  I just have to keep my faith that everything WILL work out.  It always has. It always does.  I still have my great days and I still have plenty of bad days, too, but I am learning and I am growing every day. : )

Anyway, here are some photos.  Justin and I at the Blink-182 “Rock Show” and my 14 week belly.

I also started drinking Shakeology again.  It’s amazing and really helped me get healthy, boost my metabolism and build some muscle back in the day.  I went through a lot in 2015 (story for a different day), so I cancelled, but now, with doctor approval, I am back on it and so excited! Check out my BeachBody page here and let me know if you have any questions or are interested in ordering so I can get you a hefty discount! (They have a new maternity program that I’m psyched about, too ; ) )

Also, if you’re interested in my experience with MTV as well as a pregnancy/adoption through the eyes of a 17-year-old go ahead and order my book, Bittersweet Blessing as a hardcopy or Kindle version. I do hope to write another book one day as an adult for adults, but this would also be a great gift to give your young ones so they can take a glimpse into a teenage pregnancy told first-person.

Oh, and don’t forget to follow me on Instagram and Twitter!

Until next time…

Leave comments below on what you’d like to hear more about!

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It’s been two years

Wow.

It’s been two years.  So, I was 22 when I last wrote.  Do you know how much someone changes from 22 to 24?  I got busy, stopped writing and I guess I just want to do a quick update. Plus, writing has always been therapeutic to me and helps me wind down for the night.

Well, where do I start? I am 24 going on 25.  When I look back at my posts, I feel like such a train-wreck and I’m sure most of you will agree.  Not saying, I’m much more sane now, hehe, but I really didn’t have it together.  Then again, going through something traumatic like that at such a young age, can definitely change a person and not always for the better.  It is all what you make of it.  I got pregnat at 17 and now, looking at 17-year-olds (my sister is now 18), they are babies to me! And, I thought I “knew it all.”  Who was I kidding? I can’t go back, but I have learned so much through the years.

Anyway, I am no longer 16 and Pregnant but 24, pregnant and in the midst of my career.  I started my career in sales at State Farm about 2 years ago and am currently up for a promotion in the Agency and Marketing department!  It’s just a matter of days before I find out if I got the job or not!

And, yes! It’s true! Justin and I are pregnant again and through the Harmony test, we discovered we are having a BABY BOY! I am due January 28 and about 12 weeks and some days along.  We are scared, overjoyed, ecstatic and mixed with emotions.   Since, this is supposed to be a “quick update” I won’t get too in-depth, but everything is healthy.  I’m healthy, baby is healthy, but Justin and I are both feeling a little guilty about the situation with Callie, even though she is doing fantabulous (I will get into that later).

How will we all tell her? How will she take the news? Will she resent us? Is it wrong of us to bring another child into the world? We asked God for a boy and I feel it was truly meant to be for Callie’s sake.  I know it will all work out though and God has proven to come through – even in the darkest of times.

Now, let me clear the air on some things, that I have seen posted online.  Yes, I had a miscarriage in early 2014, which is why we waited so long to announce.  Yes, afterwards I opened up about what I thought was an “alcohol problem.”  Getting pregnant at 17 and going through the adoption really created severe anxiety in me, so cut me some slack. I was a teenager/young adult.  I was not an alcoholic.  I did some stupid things while drunk, but who hasn’t? Who has also done stupid things while sober? Me and probably you. 🙂 Enough on that…

Let’s get back to Callie!!! She’s the light of my life – Six and a Kindergarten graduate! She is a bike riding, video game/Pokemon Go playing, witty, intelligent, intuitive, brilliant amazing little girl.  She adores Justin so much, so sometimes I feel put on the back-burner, hahah, but I love it that way.  They have such a great relationship, but she loves her “mama,” too.  She’s ridiculously artistic and way too smart for her own good.  I don’t know what else to say about her except we see her as much as we can and soak it all up while we’re there.

Now, as for me and Justin. We are doing great.  The older I get, the more I realize relationships simply take work and were designed/created specifically for certain reasons, so, if you work at it, the more rewarding it is.  We have grown to realize, you can’t just run away.  We are in a premarital class at the local church and are going to begin a mentoring program.  I feel it’s something everyone should do, no matter how “perfect” your relationship is.  At least we are happy and no doubt the love is there.  After what we’ve been through the past 7 years, I have prayed and talked to trusted adults and finally just turned everything to God.  (i’m sorry it took so long…) So far, it has more than proven to work.  This is also for all aspects of life, not just us.

My faith grew with Callie and it is growing with this new baby.  I am determined to be the best mom I can be and still show Callie that I am here and still continue to do everything I do for her.  I am trying my best, learning every day and am so excited for the future.

I could have gone into, so much more detail (because there is so much more), but we can save that for another blog post. 😉

I am growing every day and working on my happiness.  Thank you all who have supported me the past 7 years.  Thank you Jesus and I am truly blessed.

Phew. That felt good. Quick update? Never.

Here are a few updated pics. For more visit my instagram.

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I graduated!

This is going to be short and sweet as I don’t feel there’s much to say.  For those of you who have been following my story since day one, you know how hard it has been for me to graduate college.  I graduated with a bachelor’s in journalism and a minor in marketing.  I am so proud of myself given what I’ve been through and my recent tragedy, as well.  Even though Callie was my main motivation didn’t get to see me graduate, I pray that she will be proud of me in the future.  I’m also so thankful to my mom, my Mimi and Papa and everyone else who pushed me and was there for me through it all. It’s been a long journey that I started when I was only 17, but guess what?

I DID IT!

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My pregnancy

My pregnancy has been going good so far, but I just wanted to clear up the rumors.  I asked for prayers on Twitter the other day, but no I did not miscarry.  Me and Justin went and got an ultrasound and I am supposed to be 8-weeks, but according the doctor, I probably ovulated late because of my birth control and the sac is only measuring 6-weeks. There was no baby seen, but that’s because I may be way too early to tell anything.  I go back on Monday to find out what the issue is.  That is why I am asking for the prayers.

I am still exhausted, and I never really ever had any morning sickness. I’ve gained a little weight and have had no spotting or anything like that.

So, I was just asking everyone for prayers and hoping for the best.  I don’t see how I could have ovulated that late and conceived 5 days before my missed period, but I’m praying my birth control really did cause that.  I know God has a greater plan or maybe this was some type of wake-up call because I’ve been so stressed out.

I wasn’t going to say anything, but I really need all the prayers I can.  I’m going through so many different emotions.

Thanks 🙂

 

It’s true! I’m pregnant with baby number two!

As all of you may know, I am pregnant for the second time with my long time boyfriend Justin Lane, who also happens to be the father of my daughter Callie.

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I just wanted to offer you a quick, personal perspective about how things are between us and why we are ready for a baby.

I know it’s early to announce, but I’m so excited and I’ve had two doctor visits already and my body is holding the baby perfectly!

This wasn’t an “accident” this time.  Not to say that Callie was accident, but at 17 and 18 we definitely weren’t ready for a baby.

We are 22 and 23, both doing extremely well for ourselves and sure, we aren’t married, but have we ever done things traditionally?

Also, Justin is putting money aside every day and saving up for a ring.

We plan to get married sometime after the baby is born AND guess what guys?

I DID IT! Remember all my hope and dreams of graduating college, especially for Callie? Well, I did it! (Almost.)  As of May, I will be an official college graduate…with a bachelor’s degree!

It’s hard and we don’t know what Callie will think, but we will make it work and I pray she will understand when she is older and when that time comes.

I promise I will write more later, I just wanted to clear the air with that.  I am also going to turn this into a mommy-type blog.  I’m going to be breastfeeding, so I’ll be writing a lot about that, too! 🙂  Can’t wait to keep you updated once again!!!

Update: Callie is three, I’m a senior, and I’m a newly oilfield girlfriend

Jason Mraz – Living In The Moment
thank you, @laurenw79. perfect song!

Wow, guys. Can you believe it? I am actually writing again and it feels really good. I would like to say, “Oh, not much has changed,” but really, so much has changed. I’m not 17 anymore. I’m 21 now. In two weeks I’ll be an official senior in college and my baby girl is almost three-and-a-half years old. So, is it funny that I do not know where to begin?

Wow, oh wow. Let’s see, in my last post, I was terribly depressed and unhappy and probably on some anti-depressant medicine that really should have been anti-anxiety that didn’t work, at all. Damn, what a drama queen I was. I guess I still am a drama queen at times, but I’m much happier these days. I don’t even want to read the rest of that post. Yeah, I still miss Callie a lot and most days I wish things were different but there is nothing I can do about that but watch her grow and enjoy the time that I fortunately have with her.

Now, where do I start? I guess I already started…but, not really. Um, I am still in school. I am a junior at the University of North Texas. Yay. I really just want to graduate. In two weeks, assuming I pass everything, haha, I will be a senior. I am a news journalism major (yuck, considering they have you writing about boring news) concentration in photojournalism and a minor in marketing. Only two semesters left. That’s about eight months of class time. I can do this…slowly but surely.

That’s another thing, though. I really want to take a break to be with Justin. Yes, we are still together and it’s been over a year. But, taking a break from school…stupid, right? No, not to me. I don’t think I’d ever do it, but here’s the deal. Justin’s step-brother-in-law helped him get a new job in Louisiana “snubbing.” He’s in the oil business and what that means is he’s gone two to three weeks out of the month. And, what makes it worse is that he actually had to move to Louisiana indefinitely. So, we packed up, sold all of our furniture, and I moved back into my moms to save for school. Yikes. Just kidding.

Anyway, J will be coming back eventually because he got hired for offshore work, but not for a while. Let’s just say he signed his lease for a year back in February. He has to stay to work in the shop and learn things (?) and make extra money.

It is such a great opportunity but I’ve never really done a long distance relationship. It’s even harder when he is offshore and works 12-13 hour days, everyday, and I only get to talk to him a little bit at the end of the night and sometimes it makes me so sad. And this is for roughly three weeks at a time. I’m sure I’ll get used to it, but going from living together and falling asleep with each other every night and waking up next to each other every morning to seeing each other a weekend out of every month is hard. It would be really different if he were to move home and just leave offshore. But, he can’t do that right now.

He says that he is doing this for us, which honestly means a lot because I feel like I’ve never had anyone care so much for me or do so much for me, honestly. He’s really my best friend and things just fell into place. I honestly thought we would never get back together after we broke up in 2009 and when Callie was born, and I was perfectly OK with that, but we just came together. That’s what makes me think that if things are meant to be, then they will just…be. And things happen when you least expect it. He is so hard working and I am so proud of him. We have been through so much together and at times, I thought we weren’t going to last, but we have always made it through. Him being gone really put things into perspective for us. We don’t take advantage of the time we have together and I think that we really appreciate each other more. Call it stupid, but I don’t know what I would do without him in my life. He supports me and encourages my dreams and future. I am pretty sure this is it, for me at least. And we just want to do things right this time.

Now, the part most of you are probably anticipating. I have already written about Justin meeting Callie for the first time. We have seen her twice since then, and I have seen her one other time. She is three-years-old now and amazing as can be. She is so smart, as I always say. She is getting more and more beautiful every single day and nothing warms my heart more than to hear her say, “I love you too much.”

She is such a happy and bubbly little girl. She is beautiful and she knows it. “Take a picture of me doing this. I’m so pretty,” she says. Those bright blue eyes can charm anybody. I’ll post some photos at the bottom of this entry.

As for me, I am doing great. I’m almost done with my third to last semester of school. I moved back into my mom’s to save for school and wait on my love. It’s good. It was rough at first, trying to find a place to go, since I didn’t want to move back home, but it’s really for the best right now.

In the meantime, I have been anticipating the last day of school and working a little bit on the weekends serving. I have also been working out everyday and eating clean and trying to live a healthier lifestyle. I do Jillian Michaels’ program the 30 Day Shred, and it is killing me!

I am also writing now for Examiner.com and Gather.com which is honestly a great opportunity for me to get my writing out there and started. I am also kind of talking to another HUGE company, which I am totally excited about, but that is for another day.

J comes home in about two weeks or so, so I am completely looking forward to spending some time with him over the summer. We were planning to see Callie and take a couple of vacations, but we decided to just go see Callie spend all of our money and time on her, and maybe spend a couple days out on South Padre Island. I’m 21 now. Ha! It will be fun! We might even camp out on the beach! I’m scared!! I can’t wait for summer though!

I don’t really know what else to say. My life is pretty boring at this point. But, I’m happy and that is what counts. : )

Until next time, yall!

Love,

Ashley

Gather articles
Examiner articles
Twitter – @ashleyslzr

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“God, grant me…”

Jack’s Mannequin – There, There Katie

“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”

I need help.  I don’t even enjoy writing anymore.  I don’t even know why.  I feel like it’s useless and writing doesn’t even help anymore.  I’m not even good at it.  Not anymore.

I am happy with my life at the moment, but I feel like I am missing something and I don’t know what it is.  I feel like when I am sad or upset, I find something to be upset about, but when I dig deep down within myself, I think it’s about Callie.  I lost my main source of income, and I can’t afford the counseling that I was getting.  Justin says I need help, and I know.  I do need help because he isn’t the only one that is saying it.  I really am a lot better with the situation, especially with Justin there to help me, but I really do feel like a huge piece of me is just missing.  I would love to have Callie running around here every day.

I am scared, because this sadness is pushing itself onto something else such as my weight, insecurities, body image, stress, school, or anything else that I am “unhappy about” every single day.  I am scared because whatever the sadness pushes itself onto is affecting everyone around me and pushing them away.  Justin and I have been arguing, and I don’t even know why.  Probably because he thinks I’m not happy and it hurts so much to not be able to make the one happy.  I am sure he feels it and i know I definitely feel that way about him.

I want to get better and I want to be happier.  I am so insecure with myself.  I just feel like I can’t be 100% confident with my body and who I am or what I have.  I am always striving for perfection and the next best thing.  I want to be happy again.  I mean, like I have said before, I am happy with what I have now.  I love Justin.  I am blessed to be in school and living in a nice place.  I don’t know what it is.

I think the time I was happiest in my life was when I was pregnant had Callie.  It was stressful, but I was still happy.  I would bounce back from the sadness and knew that I had something there that was so absolutely perfect and beautiful.  Why can’t I do that now?  I have no idea.  I want to.  I try to.  I felt so complete and she turned my life into something that it was never going to be without her.  Everything I am doing, that I do not want to do is for her.  I’m sure she would want to see me happy too, and I know she would want to see Justin and I together as well.  I love him and I do not want to ruin what we have either.  Please, help me.  Pray for me.  Anything.  I want to be secure in myself and who I am.  I don’t want to get mad over things that aren’t worth getting mad about.  I want to control my temper and my actions and my thought process.  At least I can recognize it, and the next step is just fixing it.

I am so happy when I get to Skype Callie.  She always turns my mood around.  She is so beautiful, smart, and big.  She has the biggest sense of humor that I have ever seen in my life, especially from a baby.  I love seeing her happy.  I do.  A part of me just feels like I could be the one making her happy.  Who wouldn’t?  It still kills me to not be able to see her every day.  I think about her every single day and I pray for her all of the time.  Sometimes when I think of her, I cry, and other times I just smile, or brush the thought off all together.  My mom told me that it would get easier as time goes on.  A lot of people have said that.  In a way it is, but in a way, every day it gets harder.  It really does.  I just want to be okay with the things I cannot change.  I want to be 100% happy again.

Major Update – Justin sees Callie

Taylor Swift – Safe and Sound

First of all, I am so sorry I have been so neglectful of this blog.  I quickly re-did it so it is still under some bit of construction.  If you or if you know of anybody who is willing to help me make this blog look amazing, please let me know!

Second of all, I have not written in forever.  I kind of just fell out of it.  That being said, I am sorry if this is a horribly written piece of work – uninteresting, jumbled, and all over the place.

Either way, I hope you enjoy reading this much anticipated update.

Most of you all know that Justin and I got back together about 5 months ago.  Since then we have moved in together and things are going great! I will post some apartment photos later! We are also about to take our second trip to go see Callie together in a few days, which brings me to the main topic of this entry.

Justin met Callie for the first time.  It was amazing seeing them together.  She instantly clanged to him and didn’t even notice his tattoos. ; ) We spent a wonderful Easter with her and Kenny and Lisa. Kenny even took some awesome photos of us three.  She is so beautiful, energetic, and full of life.  Callie also has the biggest sense of humor that I have ever seen.

As soon as Justin saw her, you could tell his face lit up.  Whenever he talks about it, he says that it didn’t actually click in until he saw her in person.  He says he just saw her walking around the corner, in her cute little yellow dress, and that was it.  He was instantly in love.  Who couldn’t be?

Let me also tell you such a cute story about this photo. Callie and I were outside playing with chalk, while Justin was inside. I drew the little girl in the middle with the dress, and I said, “Who’s that?” Then Callie goes, “Me!” So I drew myself to the right and I asked her who it was and she goes, “Mama!” Now, you guys might be wondering what she refers to Justin as. Well, for now, she calls him Justin, until she can form her own opinion. Anyway, just as I was about to draw Justin, she points to the left of her and says, “Draw udtin (justin) here!” It was so adorable.

Now, as you can see, she obviously loves him already. Every time we Skype she asks for him. I just think, “geez, what about me?!” Just kidding. I am happy they click so well. But, there was a time when they were on the trampoline that she didn’t want me. Kenny and Lisa have a beautiful deck outside and we were barefoot on it since we had been on the trampoline previously. To get to the trampoline, you have to walk through the grass, so she asked Justin to carry her to the trampoline. I got up to come, and she says, “No mama! No! No!!” She didn’t want me! I thought she was kidding, so I try to crawl into the net to get into the trampoline, and she continued to say that she just wanted Justin! I couldn’t believe it. I was a little bit sad, but I guess it was okay. It was kind of bittersweet. I’ll just keep telling myself that it is because Justin can do flips and spin her way faster than I can. ; )

We did get to go visit the beach when Callie was napping and had a nice lunch / walk together! <3

 

Saying goodbye was pretty hard for us. It seemed like Justin was going to even cry. Honestly, I feel like he might have a little bit. I don’t know. But I do know that he was sad. Of course, I did. I always do when I have to leave her behind. I felt bad. When we were upstairs with her she told us, “No bye-bye.” Then said “Bye, bye” in the saddest way. Of course, that is how all babies are when they don’t want people to leave. I probably just felt it more. These are some of the last photos of the visit that we took with her.  I am honestly just so thankful to God for letting this work out the way it did.  Callie will get to know both of us, and I have never been so happy.  Justin is doing so great, and I am so glad to see it.

Now, I cannot wait to squeeze that widdle bewwy again!

Lastly, check out these beautiful photos of them together.

Until next time . . .

SOME VIDEOS:

follow me on twitter: @ashleyslzr

Update 1.

Hey, guys. Here is one quick update.  I have lost a lot of weight recently. I’m almost ready for swimsuit season.

Here are some recent photos of me recently for those who haven’t seen.  I have come a long way since I was 17 and started this blog!

Also, for those of you who already aren’t, follow me on my verified twitter and instagram!

twitter: @ashleyslzr

instagram: ashleyslzr