What’s up world, I’m Charmaine Johnson-Fuller. I am so excited to be a new-ish contributor to Detroit Mom.
Who Am I?
I am an avid learner – I have yet to meet a bookstore that I haven’t fallen in love with. I love sparkle and shine – if it doesn’t shine, I don’t want it. Christmas movies or whatever Lifetime-ish movie Netflix has to offer are what I love.
For fun, I love to play in my garden or with my houseplants, play piano, or scrapbook. I low-key love cooking, and I have Instagram pics to prove it. Something about trying a new recipe and working it out is exciting to me. Something about the kitchen is so therapeutic.
I serve the world by helping special needs entrepreneurial mommas of color create more time, energy, and focus without overwhelm. I ab-so-love what I do; the transformations I help special needs moms create are amazing. To watch someone go from burned out to flow is a beautiful transformation to be a part of. I am grateful that mommas trust me to support them through some pretty rough times.
Think of me as Olivia Pope mixed with a bit of Iylana Vanzant and a touch of Tony Robbins – I am an expert at finding options. I am also the Queen of Clarity – I am great at moving through the noise to create clear workable solutions.
How I Take Care of Me
I didn’t always use to take care of myself. When I got up in the morning, I used to hit the ground running toward the next thing to do. The life of a special needs mom often feels chaotic all the time. I didn’t know how I would be able to take care of myself when my life didn’t feel like I could stop.
At some point, I burned all the way out and medically had to come up with another way to live. So I started small and started a 15-minute self-care routine over 15 years ago. That has morphed into a two-and-a-half hour morning routine that allows me to get my mind, body, and spirit right.
My routine is a morning workout, journaling, reading, EFT tapping, and meditation. These help me to get centered and grounded in my day to make sure I show up intentionally and clear.
Throughout the day, I take breaks to give my day breath. These breaks also help me to not feel so “against the clock”, and give my life flow.
The fiercest way I take care of myself is with my boundaries and my calendar. I protect my energy like Fort Knox, so I am very intentional about what I say yes to, and what I say no to.
Who My People Are
I am a mom of three, a 20-year-old daughter, a 14-year-old son (deceased), and a 10-year-old son. I am a special needs momma to three kids. My daughter is diagnosed with autism, my oldest son was diagnosed with autism and epilepsy, and my youngest son was diagnosed with ADHD. I am also currently homeschooling my 10-year-old son and loving it.
I’ve been married (to the same guy) for over 20 years, and it has been the best ride of my life.
We are vegan-ish, which means sometimes we eat full vegan, and sometimes eggs or cheese find its way into our menu.
My family loves spending time together via movie nights, Sunday brunch, and hanging on the patio. In our household, you’ll always find laughter, hugs, and lots of love.
Where I’m From
So from the Southwest side of Detroit was where I was born and raised. We moved East and are now Grosse Pointe Woods residents for over 10 years. I love how the area has diversified and has culturally expanded over the years. What I love most about living in the Metro Detroit area is that fun is a ride down Gratiot away. The options are endless. The people who live here and say, there’s nothing to do, or that opportunities have dried up, are blind.
I’m a foodie and my fave place is always to be where the food is. There are so many vegetarian and vegan restaurants in the area now that going out isn’t as hard as it used to be.
We don’t go out to eat often, but when we do our choices are Pop Culture Vegan or Seva Detroit. If you’re looking for a quick bite option, Pop Culture is the place to go. If you want to sit down and chill, Seva is our fave option, and neither will leave you feeling disappointed.
Here’s What I’m Excited to Share
I’m excited to share how I’ve navigated and still navigate these special needs streets. I’ll share the resources, techniques, and systems that have kept me sane as a special needs mom.
I also can’t wait to share our homeschooling and vegan journey – like how I got a chip eating, candy-loving 10-year-old on board to eat veggies and try new foods. I’ll share how we navigate the grief of my oldest son and the impacts it has on our life. Finally, I’m sharing how I have built a business while running a family without losing my mind.
I hope that everything I share can support as many mammas as possible. If you have any questions or want me to know something specific, just ask. I want to make sure what I write is what you need.
See y’all soon