Morning Mindfulness- Smoking & Gratitude

I think I can dare to say that I do believe this FM flare up is coming to an end. I’m still on edge and in pain but I’ve recently stopped fantasizing about peeling my skin off with a potato peeler. That’s improvement, right? As such, I think I’m getting better. This last week has led to a lot of things. The consideration of removing refined sugars from my diet because they’re horrible for all of us; and in my case, make the fibromyalgia much worse. Check out this (pretty awesome) video if you want to know more. It showed me so much and is important to our health. 

Also, I’m considering quitting smoking. Anyone who has followed me for long knows that smoking in and of itself, is one of my coping mechanisms for dealing with the pain. You know I enjoy it as well as I do; nonetheless, something changed this week. I was smoking so much (2 1/2+ packs a day) because of the pain, that my chest felt like it was on fire. So I go to my local vape shop, buy some juice for my dripper, and stater vaping again. Just to be clear, I don’t use those E-pens that still contain 400 cancer causing ingredients and are developed by the cigarette companies. I use an RDA (rebuidable drip atomizer), where I make my own coils, thread cotton through them and then drip juice on the cotton. The juice contains nothing but vegetable or coconut glycerin, natural flavoring, and nicotine. Yesterday I only smoked 9-10 cigarettes (because I was vaping more) and I’m about to smoke my first one for the day today. I’ll make another post about vaping at a later date, as there are many misconceptions. Back on topic…

If I’m being honest here, this want to smoke less or not at all is probably motivated by more than just my burning chest. As I mentioned in my post a few days ago, Flare Ups & Fuck Ups, my love’s daughter is about to start spending every other weekend with us. I just can’t help but feel a certain way when I think about coming back in the house, reeking like cigarettes, and leaning down to pick her up. This is not at all to say anything about the parents who do smoke! My family always did. But no one in either of her families does. So you can hopefully see my hesitance. The wheels are turning to say the least. My only solidified goal is to smoke much less (as of right now) though. We’ll see how it goes and I’ll keep y’all updated on my progress :). 

In closing, I just want to thank all my readers! It has been absolutely lovely to get so many comments full of positive feedback and opinions from others! I thank the readers in each comment for taking the time to read my post. I know this may seem like some typical thing that anyone who wants readers would do but it’s not, for me. I am truly grateful for the people who have read this blog (some from the very beginning) and who take the time to comment and encourage me. This has been an incredible journey and I plan to continue with it as it has now become a necessary part of my happiness. You guys have made this such a beautiful process for me and for that, I am truly grateful! Much love!

by Ashley Hebner

© All Rights Reserved 2016


The Playlist Game


  1. Put your favorite playlist on shuffle and list the first 10 songs that play (no skipsies!)
  2. Quote your favorite lyrics or verse from the song. 
  3. Tag more people! 🙂

I nominate fightorflightsCarla Louise, and Simon. Anyone else who wants to do this can though!


    1. Worthy by Jacob Banks

    “The air is warm, my heart is cold,

    And I’ll never know how it feels

    The air is warm, my heart is cold. 

    And I’ll never know how it feels,

    To have a heart of gold.”

        2. Chasing Pavements by Machine Gun Kelly

    “Motherfuckas gettin paid, I’m just tryna get saved

    7 years of living crooked: I’m just tryna get straight

    All the crack in my city even though these streets paved

    Makes me wonder if I should let all my life dreams wait or should I just keep chasin’ pavements?”

        3. Dark Paradise by Lana Del Rey

    “Every time I close my eyes, It’s like a dark paradise.”

        4. Remember The Name by Fort Minor

    “This is ten percent luck, twenty percent skill. 

    Fifteen percent concentrated power of will. 

    Five percent pleasure, fifty percent pain. 

    And a hundred percent reason to remember the name!”

        5. Revolution by Diplo

    “So don’t let them steal your light. Don’t let them break your stride. There is light on the other side and you’ll see all the raindrops falling behind. It’s a revolution. And we’ll make it out tonight. It’s a revolution!”

        6. Morphine by ZZ Ward

    “‘Cause I’ve been down to the bottom of the barrel,

    I’ve been to the bottom of the lick,

    I’ve been to the bottom with the devil,

    Yeah, I’ve been through the fire, so I just can’t feel the pain,

    I keep it drippin’ like morphine.”

        7. Alpha Omega by Machine Gun Kelly

    “Knew I was trouble since I was eleven, Ripped up my jeans and I bought me a leather. My friends saw me as a King like Coretta. My dad saw his son as a nuisance, a rebel, and My music sounds like the devil. Turn that shit off or get out of my temple. Right after that he’d go back to his Kettle One vodka. And drink it all up till he’s mental. I have no issue, I am official. Let them come at me I practice Jiu Jitsu. Only fear two things with three letters dawg, That’s G-O-D, God and my fucking initials. Doctors called up to the news to report to them what they discovered. Said I’m the first of a species that they call a real muthafucka.”

        8. Moments by Tove Lo

    “I’m not the prettiest you’ve ever seen. But I have my moments, I have my moments. Not the flawless one, I’ve never been. But I have my moments, I have my moments. I can get a little drunk, I get into all the don’ts. But on good days I am charming as fuck. I can get a little drunk, I get into all the don’ts. But on good days I am charming as fuck.”

        9. If I Could Be Her by ZZ Ward

    “She’s got the perfect little car. I drive a Chevy with the paint peeling off. She’s got her daddy’s credit card. I play for dollars down on Diamond Boulevard. If I had her heels on I would never do you wrong. She treats you like a patient with the lies she’s got you on. Turn the lights off, Cause I’m all yours. Cover you in my curves, I’d give ya what you deserve. We could get lost, Get the lines crossed. Run ya like a fever. Woah if I could be her.”

        10. Coming Down by Halsey

    “I found God. I found him in a lover. When his hair falls in his face. And his hands so cold they shake. I found the Devil. I found him in a lover. And his lips like tangerines. And his color coded speak.”

      Ask Me Anything Monday

      It’s that time of the week again! Submit any questions, queries, or random wonderings you may have! 🙂 As always, it can be a personal question about me or my life or it can be completely random. And I will answer it as completely and honestly as I can! Let’s go! 

      Much love,

      Ashley Hebner

      © All Rights Reserved 2016 


      Flare Ups & Fuck Ups

      Hello fellow bloggers. So this is going to be a seemingly pointless rant session so feel free to run for the hills now…

      Moving on, I am going through one bad ass mother fucker of a flare up. My clothes feel like sandpaper, the shower (which usually brings me comfort) feels like a million little needle pricks, and I’m so exhausted I forgot my own name for a second yesterday. I have Fibro Fog to thank for that. Not to mention the ever present, distracting as an old man in a leotard pain. Fuck me, right?

      My love’s daughter is spending her first weekend with us in two weeks and we made plans to set her room up and paint it tomorrow. We made these plans earlier this week. But due to my Fibro Fog, lack of sleep, and pain I just completely forgot. It just slipped my mind in between trying to be a productive member of society and remember to not leave the house without pants… Or keys… Or shoes. So what did I do? Accidentally double booked myself. There’s a woman I’ve owed a tattoo for the better part of 3 1/2 years and we had made plans to do it yesterday. However, by the time I got off of work I was so utterly exhausted that I quickly text her and asked her if we could just reschedule for Sunday. I was then reminded about his daughter’s room. Her spending weekends here is a big deal for both of us. We’re both incredibly excited and have been waiting 7 months for this to happen. His ex wife is a control freak who has a resentment against me (for no other reason then I happen to exist) and created this restriction that he could only have his daughter at his parents house, purely because I live at ours. In an attempt to be the bigger person and give her time to heal, he agreed. And now, it’s finally over. No more packing up and splitting our lives twice a month. No more planning every other weekend around having to drive to another town. Now it’ll be he way it should’ve been from the beginning. And again, were ecstatic. 

      And somehow, I forgot. 

      Naturally, he got a little upset and feared this wasn’t as big of a deal for me as it is for him. But it is. This is just one example of how this thing wrong with my body can creep in and effect my relationship and even, my partner. Obviously it was an easy problem to fix and I did by rescheduling the tattoo. But it was still a frustrating thing. It amazes me how I can remember all the talks we had about setting the room up (painting it was my idea for fucks sake) and planning when we would do it; yet when I double booked, it just was not present in my mind. It just floated away into thin air regardless of the fact that it is massively important to me. 

      Fuck You Fibromyalgia. 

      I’ve started taking Magnesium Malleate because it’s supposed to help the pain and I’m trying to eat better. There’s of course still a steady flow of NSAID’s as well. But facts are, there’s probably more I could do but I need to get new doctors down here. I need to make the appointments on Monday. I spoke with my one doctor about it and expressed how I had lost all faith in doctors and he encouraged me to just try one more time. I agreed. I am not just choosing to suffer. But I also happen to know I’ve tried everything that’s ever been presented to me and have walked away with horrible side effects and a decreased quality of life instead of the intended increase. Needless to say, it’s maddening. And now I can’t feel my fingers anymore and I have to get ready for my day today; so this rant is over. Thanks for reading (whoever was actually enough of a masochist to make it this far :))

      by Ashley Hebner

      © All Rights Reserved 2016 

      Dear Daddy

      Dear Daddy,

      Did you know that when I was a little girl all the other kids used to ask me who my dad was? "What does he do?" "What's his name?" "Why doesn't he ever come pick you up?" "Do you even have a dad?" 

      More often than not, I told them you were dead. For some reason I always said you died of lung cancer; I think it was just the first thing that came to mind when someone asked me how you died one day. After you actually died when I was 13 I carried so much guilt for saying that, for years. Maybe I still do. But it was the easy answer. It was the answer that nobody questioned. That no one could use against me. I remember the meaner kids, the ones who knew you weren't dead. "You're dad left because he didn't love you." I'll never forget that one… I never thought it was weird to grow up with mom and whatever guy she was dating at the time. But when I hit elementary and middle school and the questions started coming I quickly realized that most kids, especially in the south, had dads in their life. I was the "weird one". The "freak". The fatherless daughter…

      I don't know what bothered me more: the questions they asked or that I didn't have the answers for them? I don't know. I asked mom about you so many times. But she was only actually with you for a year when she became pregnant with me and you were kicked out of the house for drinking too much shortly after I was born. She didn't know you for all that long. Still she claimed I would've loved you. Despite all the hate I've heard her spew about the many bad men she's encountered, you are the only person she never said a single negative thing about. She told me how charismatic you were, how you could make anyone laugh, and how people always loved you. She said I had your eyes and your kindness. She said you had an incredible smile. She said you were a good man. She also said you were in a lot of pain and just couldn't stop drinking and doing drugs. She told me that your son, my brother, Richard had died tragically at the tender age of 18 after a drunk driver hit him head on. She said you just could not get it together after that happened. That it took away a piece of you that never came back. She told me when she discovered she was pregnant that you looked at her scared eyes and said "You have no idea how much this is going to change your life. You're going to love this baby so much." You had already felt, and lost, what she was about to gain.

      She told me that when I was an infant you would carry me outside along with the morning paper, sit down, cross your ankle over the other leg's thigh and carefully lay me in the little hole that that crossing created. She said you would read the paper to me for hours. She said you absolutely adored me.

      So why?

      I remember spending hours on the Internet, scouring ancestry sites, and social media trying to find you. I remember just wanting to meet you, even if it was only one time. I wanted to know you. I never felt any ill will towards you as I imagine many other fatherless daughters have felt towards their fathers. I knew I couldn't understand how badly Richard's death made you spin out of control. I knew you were an addict. I have always known, in my heart, that you were sick and in pain; not careless and unloving. But that doesn't change the hole that your absence left in me. That doesn't change that I will never know who my father truly was. That doesn't change the fact that I'll never be able to look at your face and pick out which of my features I got from you. It doesn't change the fact that you'll never walk me down the aisle or hold my children the way you once held me. And it doesn't change the way I feel and have felt for years. I know you loved me..

      So why?

      Why couldn't you visit every now and then? Why couldn't you call before I was 12 and you were too inebriated to understand or speak to? Why couldn't you get your shit together for the child you still had, who was still living, desperately craving a relationship with you? Why couldn't you show me you loved me as much as my mom tells me you did? Why couldn't you just be there? Even if you did drink too much. I will always be undeniably half you, even if I don't know what that half is. I have parts of my personality that are the exact opposite of my sister and mother. From mom's descriptions, I got them from you. My laid back personality, my gentle spirit, my ease with people. Why couldn't you let me see those things for myself? 

      Why couldn't you be there to protect me? Maybe if you'd sobered up you and mom would've withstood the test of time. Maybe she never would've dated anyone else. Maybe all the things I endured never would've happened. Hell, regardless of that, I would've felt blessed to even be shuttled back and forth between houses if that meant I got to know you. Why did you take away my chance to know you? To know what I came from? What I'm made of? Who I take after? Where my family's from? Everyone on your side is dead except your first daughter and no one's seen her in years. God knows I've tried to find her too but have yet to even come close. Maybe I would know her had you just stayed in my life. Don't get me wrong dad. I'm not mad. I'm sad. No, I'm devastated. Want to know a secret?

      If I don't think about it for too long I can almost avoid feeling like I can't breathe. I can almost pretend that this lifetime of bad memories (that my inner child is convinced you would've stopped from ever happening) never would've happened. I can pretend I don't have "daddy issues". I can pretend it doesn't hurt and I can even speak about it like it's just another fact. "I don't have a dad. Who needs one when you've got two moms?"  I've became a master at hiding this pain. It all started in a school yard in the first fucking grade. I was angry and sad I didn't know you. Angry that I didn't have what other kids did. I grew up envying my friends who had these awesome, close relationships with their fathers. Nothing sick or twisted, just mutual love and adoration. I knew nothing of that. I knew only sick men and an occasional, rare good one. Maybe if I'd gotten to know you I wouldn't have suffered for years at the hands of others. Maybe these maybe's are just some fairytale I made up in my head because if I idolize you and memorialize you in my mind then I won't have to be angry at a man I wanted so badly to know my entire life. I wanted my dad so badly that I never admitted it to a single living soul. I only spoke to you twice when I was 12 and I was so excited you called; but you were too drunk to talk and be understood. Then a few months later while I was in Florida at grandma's you happened to call and when you found out I was there you tried to see me. My grandma said we had to call my mom and mom said no because she was afraid that you would be all messed up on drugs or that I would absolutely adore you and leave her. I still haven't completely healed from the fact that that opportunity was taken away from me. I know she had good intentions. No one could've known you'd die only a few months later. And yet, you did. I missed my chance. No adult reunion, no knowing my parent once I was old enough to find you myself, no second chances. You were just gone. You are just gone and there's not one fucking thing I can do about it. Will this hole in my heart ever heal dad? Is it crazy to pray that you send me a sign that you're up there somewhere watching over me? I'm typing this letter and bawling my fucking eyes out at 25 years old over you, a man I only met briefly when I was 3 years old. This is why I don't talk about this shit, write about this shit, or even pause to think about it. When Ry and I first got together, I nonchalantly told him about the time I spent 4 days in Florida hunting down your ashes so I could have at least one piece of you and gain some closure. I told him I had to leave empty handed because it wasn't a priority to my piece of shit step dad and he wouldn't drive one hour out of the way to the crematorium. He cried. He said he could sense this overwhelming sadness in me and that as a father, he couldn't imagine not knowing his daughter. I reassured him that I was fine and that you were something I had already emotionally dealt with. And you want to know the sad part dad? I buried this so deeply that when I said that to him I truly believed it.

      Well, I'm not okay. I miss you and I don't even know you. I mourn the relationship I never got to have. I miss the father I never got to bond with. I cry for the memories that will never be mine. So if you're up there somewhere, please send me a sign. Because even at 25, you're still on my mind.

      Love Always,

      Your Daughter




      by Ashley Hebner

      © All Rights Reserved 2016