A Treasure Worth Fighting For (Part 3 of 3)

Check out Part 1 and Part 2 if you missed them… ¬†ūüôā

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Despite the humor and sweet moments of parenthood, there are patches that are really¬†tough. ¬†I think the lack of sleep and personal time doesn’t help matters any. ¬†We’re only human after all, and each of us has a breaking point.

During those long days, it can be hard to see the big picture.  To remember that being a mom is precious and that moments with our little ones are all too fleeting.  Because right here and now, hours feel long.  Patience is running low.  Anxiety levels are flaring.  And exhaustion is taking its toll on your body.

Everything hurts, including your feelings.

You’ve cleaned up poop and pee, dealt with tantrums, utilized the time-out chair, and wiped down toddler-science-experiments-gone-wrong one too many times.

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There was one moment in particular – a couple of weeks ago – that I just wondered how we were going to get through this. ¬†Like, was I really cut out to be a mom to two littles? ¬†The house looked like a bomb went off. ¬†Everything was a mess and needed scrubbing, never mind tidying. ¬†¬†The cats were vomiting up hairballs. ¬†Nate was working a charter, so he wouldn’t be home until very late… ¬†Brady was innocently, yet quite successfully, destroying things in his effort to explore and play. ¬†And when I tried to guide him elsewhere, he’d angrily yell back and refuse to find satisfaction in the other activities I offered.¬†¬†(It was obvious to me that he was acting out due to wanting my attention, but¬†Kaitlyn¬†was having a rough morning and wouldn’t stop fussing. ¬†So I wasn’t able to hold him close the way he wanted to be, which resulted in toddler tantrums and mommy guilt).

I just sat in the middle of our home and wanted to throw my hands up in defeat. ¬†I wanted to admit to the world that I didn’t have this. ¬†I had no idea what I was doing. ¬†I was in over my head, and I wasn’t prepared to gently raise a strong-willed son and an emotional baby girl. ¬†My patience was at an all-time low! ¬†And, I’m not proud to admit, my attitude (and raised voice) was reflecting all the frustration and anxiety that I felt inside.

I just needed everyone to cooperate and to cooperate now!  Mommy was DONE!

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Then I received news that a dear friend of mine had passed the night before from cancer. ¬†And suddenly, everything was put into perspective for me. ¬†When you watch a family lose their mother, you are reminded of what truly matters and just how precious each day with your children truly is. ¬†I took in the chaos around me – the noise and the mess – and I realized just how blessed I am to have it. ¬†All those dirty dishes… ¬†The dust bunnies clinging to the bookcase… ¬†The toddler who needs a little bit more patience and a loving hand… ¬†The infant who stares up at me with such adoring eyes…

I will not have these forever, but I do have them now.

At the funeral of my friend, her son oh-so-eloquently spoke about the things that made his mother truly special. ¬†And never once did “a spotless house” or “keeping it all together” came up. ¬†He talked about her amazing laugh, her love of Christmas, activities they did as a family, and her always ¬†being there for him and his sister.

And honestly, that’s one of the greatest impacts she had on my life. ¬†Her love of being a mom. ¬†I don’t know that I’ve ever met a woman who never once complained about being a mother or a wife. ¬†She always told me that her goal in life was to enjoy every stage with her children, and she really did. ¬†She was proud of them – and her husband – beyond words, and she loved them without measure. ¬†To hear her talk about marriage or motherhood was to hear her brag about her soulmate or kids.

That always stuck with me and has been a challenge and a goal for me too. ¬†That despite the craziness and the chaos, I want to enjoy each stage. ¬†Because even if each stage moving forward does seem to get a little easier, the stage behind it is gone forever. ¬†I can never get it back, so it’s up to me to live in the moment now.

These kiddo’s? ¬†They’re treasures worth fighting for. ¬†They’re worth the sleepless nights, the waking up early, the never-ending struggle to keep life organized… They’re worth every bit of it.

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I’m not saying that I haven’t still had bad days. ¬†(Last week, in particular, was pretty tough). ¬†I’m not saying that we should ignore just how hard being a mom is sometimes and pretend that life is always sunshine and roses. ¬†(I’m a firm believer in being real with each other, because we¬†all¬†go through tough patches and need the encouragement of others). ¬†But¬†I also firmly believe that – despite the craziness of mom life – we can strive to flourish in the joy that God provides. ¬†We can grow and learn to parent with patience and love. ¬†We can choose to find beauty in every single day, overlooking the clutter to see the sparkle.

I am so thankful to God that I have my two kiddo’s. ¬†And although these recent days have been hard (because we moms ALL have those days), I want to try even harder to rise above and to not only treasure these moments, but to let my children see that I’m treasuring the moments.

That I’m’ treasuring them.

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A Treasure Worth Fighting For (Part 1 of 3)

Let me set the scene…

Colicky baby is screaming¬†at the top of her lungs¬†in the stroller, despite all attempts to appease her. ¬†Toddler is sitting in the middle of a cold, campground road, yelling that he’s mad and that he won’t take another step until mommy and daddy let him go swimming in the lake. ¬†(We’re mean like that and wouldn’t let Brady swim due to the “High bacteria count, please do not swim,” signs. ¬†Apparently, he doesn’t care if he might grow a third arm due to splashing in contaminated waters…).

And mommy and daddy are just standing there, taking in the chaos in front of them and wondering how it all came to this.

Nate says: ¬†“Where would we be right now if we didn’t have kids?”

I reply, after sighing: ¬†“Probably sitting on a beach in Hawaii. ¬†I’d be SO sunburnt right now from laying out in the sun too long.”

Nate nods in agreement and says: ¬†“I’d have eaten too much of my delicious, southwestern omelet and homefries for breakfast, so I’d be feeling sick.”

Me: ¬†“That time-change on the flight over to the islands is really exhausting.”

Nate: ¬†“Palm trees are so overrated.”

I say: ¬†“Yeah, we’d be really miserable sitting over there in Hawaii if we didn’t have kids!”

We were being tongue-in-cheek, of course, and had our laugh before collecting our children and trying to bring order back to the moment. ¬†(Then again, as you already know if you’re a parent, getting everything and everyone in order is basically impossible. ¬†Still, you can’t fault us for trying).

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As parents, we all have those days. ¬†Sure, Nate and I love our kids with every single ounce of our being. ¬†We live for them and – quite honestly – we’d die for them. ¬†And although we’re one step away from the brink of insanity, we really wouldn’t change a thing. ¬†Because now that we’ve met them, we need¬†them! ¬†The love we feel for these two precious children is never-ending and too big to put into words. ¬†And we realize that they are worth every single moment of pull-your-hair out frustration.

But even though there are those days, there are obviously better days too.  Fun days.  Days filled with giggles, and snuggles, and memorable adventures.

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If I’m going to be completely honest though, as I always am here on my blog, it’s been tough these past couple of weeks (hence my inability to blog much these days. ¬†In my defense, I also haven’t been showering much either. ¬†So I promise that this little corner of the internet hasn’t been the only thing neglected recently. ¬†If I can blog once a week, and shower most¬†days, then I’m doing pretty good)!

My little dude has – as of late – decided that he is allergic to sleep. ¬†And he hates it with every fiber of his being. ¬†This is after MONTHS of him happily falling asleep the minute we’d put him to bed (which was, as I’m sure you can guess, quite amazing).¬† Before now, we’d just put him to bed, and he’d sleep all night long (with the occasional sleep regression that messed things up, of course). ¬†Never once did I have to follow a specific bedtime routine.

But yet here I am, now Googling how to help your toddler fall alseep in ten easy steps.

These days, we put him into his bed, and he’s sliding off of it like a slug before we’ve had the chance to close the door behind us. ¬†This goes on for a good hour past his bed time, because apparently sleep is overrated.

I thought that I was a patient person, and then¬†this. ¬†I have suddenly lost my one hour of free time during the day (since he also insists on crawling into bed with me and Nate at 5am every morning, just half an hour before we need to get up for the day). ¬†I am now Googling how to be a joyful mom amidst great suffering. ¬†Guys, I am SO tired it hurts. ¬†And I am SO in need of some me-time, but it’s just not happening these days.

Jesus, please take the wheel!

Brady is also suddenly struggling¬†big time¬†with having to share his mommy and daddy now that there’s an infant sister in the house. ¬†Tantrums and anger and outbursts have become commonplace, and it’s been a confusing time for all of us to navigate.

Oh thank goodness for the humorous moments! ¬†ūüôā

(…to be continued)

 

 

Q and A!

I probably should have divided this into several posts, as this is a bit of a long one. ¬†But I decided to post it at all once this time. ¬†ūüôā ¬†So you can read it in pieces or just read the sections that interest you. ¬†Thank you for the great questions, Everyone!!! ¬†You all rock!


 

What do you miss most now that you’re on a special diet as a breastfeeding mom? –¬† ¬†Yes, I had to give up dairy, eggs, soy, and nuts while breastfeeding; because Kaitlyn is intolerant to them. ¬†(I’ve been off those foods for a month now, and she is doing SO much better).

Hmmm, what do I miss most? ¬†Honestly, cheese. ¬†Ha, ha. ¬†The first thing I’m ordering after I’m done breastfeeding is a large cheese pizza with a side of cheese sticks!!

Is adding a second baby just as tough on a marriage as adding the first child was? –¬†Yes and no… ¬†Like I’ve said before, I’m super proud of how well Nate and I worked together when Brady arrived. ¬†Yes, we had a few months where the most romantic thing we did every day was a peck on the lips before bed. ¬†(We were exhausted beyond belief and so busy taking care of our new baby boy). ¬†But we really did try to focus on our marriage, and we came through stronger and more in love!

So this time around, we’ve been more aware of how things will be for awhile. ¬†That has made the busy time even more bearable. ¬†(We’re very much aware of the fact that this is only for a season). ¬†ALSO, it has encouraged us to do even better than last time; so we try to make sure we communicate… and make time for intimacy, even if we’re tired. ¬†Taking the time to snuggle or hug before bed is huge.

So I’d say this time has been even smoother than last time, even if¬†we have our days same as anyone would. ¬†ūüôā

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(I just found this gem of a picture from Brady’s first campfire. ¬†This is definitely how we feel as parents some days. ¬†Ha, ha)!!

You’re supermom for giving up so many foods while breastfeeding. ¬†How do you do it? ¬†Awwww, thank you, Missy! ¬†Honestly, I don’t think I’m supermom at all. ¬†I think we all do what we need to do if we feel it’s best for our kids. ¬†I’m a huge proponent of supporting and encouraging moms, because we are all super!!

Is it really harder to lose the baby weight the second time around? –¬†Actually, I’ve already reached my pre-pregnancy weight! ¬†(That’s only my first goal, since I had put on about 20 extra pounds before having Kaitlyn. ¬†So now I’m trying to reach my weight from before having Brady). ¬†But I really do feel great! ¬†To keep up my breastmilk, I have to consume a lot of calories each day and make sure that the weight loss is slow, and – so far – it’s going perfectly. ¬† But every week, I feel stronger and healthier!

That being said, my body didn’t bounce back as quickly this time around. ¬†I still can’t fit into my jeans (other than maternity); because I’m carrying weight in my hips, butt, and belly. ¬†Last time around, I was wearing my favorite jeans by this point. ¬†But mentally, I’m still very positive and confident. ¬†And physically, I’m feeling stronger and healthier every week!

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How is Brady adjusting to life with a sibling? ¬†–¬†This has a two part answer, to be honest. ¬†The adjustment has definitely come with its challenges… ¬†The first couple of weeks went quite smoothly, but the last few weeks have been tougher. ¬†Because he’s unable to express his feelings verbally, he has acted out in anger quite a bit. ¬†It’s very apparent that it hurts his feelings that mommy can’t cuddle or play with him the way she used to, and he’s just too little to understand it completely. ¬†We also are stuck home a lot more now. ¬†So he screams at me a lot or punches things (including himself). ¬†If I respond with a calm smile and try to keep things light, he just gets angrier. ¬†In his little head, he thinks that a negative response from me – or even getting into trouble – is better than not getting attention at all.

I’ve had to do a lot of research to learn how to calmly deal with his episodes, because I don’t want to ignore it. ¬†But at the same time, normal time-outs don’t always work. ¬†He’s really crying out for attention and security, so acting appropriately has been vital.

The biggest thing I’ve done to help lessen these outbursts has been to spend quality time with him whenever Kaitlyn is napping or lying peacefully. ¬†(The dishes or cleaning can wait. ¬†If I have the chance, we’ll snuggle, dance, sing, or read). ¬†Also, if Nate is home, I’ll let him watch Kaitlyn; so that Brady and I can go for a walk, play in the yard, read books, or do a craft. ¬†I’ve really tried to make sure we spend the time together that he needs, and I’ve honestly seen an improvement in his overall attitude!

That being said, despite his occasional anger and insecurities, Brady¬†loves¬†his baby sister! ¬†I have never before seen my mischievous, loud, and energetic boy so gentle. ¬†(Honestly, I’m shocked by it). ¬†He touches her belly lightly with his fingertips and smiles at her with such love and devotion. ¬†It is absolutely the SWEETEST thing. ¬†She’s the first thing he wants to see when he wakes up in the morning; and if he can’t immediately see her, he has to seek her out.

“Where’s baby Kaitwin?” he’ll ask. ¬†“She’s qwute.” ¬†(a.k.a. cute)

So while the adjustment hasn’t been easy, it has been worth it. ¬†The love he has for her has already shown that they will be close and that their friendship will be strong. ¬†And soon enough, having a baby sister will be a new normal for him!

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What does a normal day at your house look like right now? – ¬†¬†This was my most requested question! ¬†ūüôā ¬†Stay tuned for my day-in-the-life post! ¬†ūüôā

How has your breastfeeding journey been compared to your last one? ¬†–¬†So Kaitlyn latched perfectly for the first two weeks, and then she struggled with it a bit. ¬†(I’m wondering if she might have a lip tie like Brady did, so I need to get that checked). ¬†And obviously, Kaitlyn has the same intolerances that Brady did, so I’m on the same restricted diet.

Honestly though, the toughest thing for me has been Brady… even though I’m breastfeeding Kaitlyn. ¬†Like I mentioned above, he’s struggling a bit with the fact that I don’t have as much time for him anymore. ¬†So when Kaitlyn cluster-feeds and wants to eat every hour and a half, he really struggles with that. ¬†(Also he gets into absolutely everything when I’m trying to give Kaitlyn her milk. ¬†So it doesn’t make for a calm, intimate experience with my baby when I’m worried about what he might be playing with).

As a result, I’ve been pumping and feeding her bottles, and my plan is to eventually cut out some of the breastmilk bottles and supplement with formula (if we can find one that doesn’t bother her). ¬†That way, I’m not pumping as much and only breastfeeding at night. ¬†Hopefully that will still be a healthy option for Kaitlyn but a less stressful one for Brady.

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In your opinion, is it more of a life change to go from no kids to 1 or from 1 kid to 2? – I received several questions similar to this too! ¬† ¬†The quick response is that – for me – it has been tougher going from 1 to 2. ¬†That being said, I don’t want to undermine just how big of an adjustment it is to add 1. ¬†ūüôā

When Brady arrived, Nate and I were terrified of the most basic of things, including changing diapers.  Every single thing was new and a tad bit overwhelming.  And honestly, I was terrified of leaving the house and experiencing all the firsts; because I had never done them with an adorable, squishy baby before.  That being said, I did absolutely love the newborn stage.  A friend had reminded me to enjoy every stage, and I truly did.

Yes, it was an adjustment! ¬†Yes, I was exhausted beyond belief; and I sometimes mourned my sleep, freedom, and sense of self. ¬†But I also absolutely adored my little boy SO much that I could hardly put it into words, and I’d literally cry when I looked into his beautiful face. ¬†(Remember this post? ¬†I wrote it in the midst of my exhaustion back when Brady was a newborn…).

So yes, adding one was a lot, because it was an adjustment becoming a mom for the first time.

This time around, I’m not sweating the same things I did before. ¬†Honestly, after chasing after a toddler all the time, a sleepy newborn feels quite easy. ¬†Ha, ha. ¬†That being said, going from 1 to 2 has been tougher in that there is absolutely no down time… at all. ¬†(I so very rarely even get to use the bathroom alone).

When one is sleeping, the other needs me. ¬†And usually, they both need me at the same time. ¬†ūüėČ ¬†And I’ve missed having the time to snuggle with my newborn whenever I’d like, because – this time – I’m taking care of a two year old. ¬†When I just had Brady, I could enjoy the excuse to slow down and stay home more, but – these days – staying home can be torturous. ¬†Brady hates¬†it and gets so bored (which means tantrums and a destroyed home). ¬†But at the same time, I’m not ready to bring a toddler and a newborn out much.

And on the rare occasion that they both are napping at the same time, I have so much laundry, meal prep, or tidying to do, I can’t imagine sitting down for a moment of rest. ¬†(Also, I had to deal with postpartum blues this time around, which I didn’t last time. ¬†That, of course, didn’t help anything).

So I guess this time is just busier and crazier. ¬†As always, worth it!! ¬†But definitely harder. ¬†I do know that life will continue to get easier though, so I’m trying to embrace this time… and to keep my chin up!! ¬†ūüôā

What’s the best part about being the mom to two? –¬† Seeing them interact! ¬†Just this morning, Brady was leaning in closely, letting Kaitlyn look into his eyes. ¬†And she sent him a sweet little giggle, and my heart just melted!

I know I’ve been really stressed lately, you guys, and sharing honest feelings with some struggles that I’ve faced. ¬†But things really are starting to get easier, as we get a bit of a schedule going. ¬†And I am just in love with my two little ones. ¬†God is continuously giving me strength, patience, and wisdom in how to best love both of them; and I know that I will just continue to learn. ¬†ūüôā

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#MOMLIFE (Part 1 of 3)

My son is 2 1/2 years old, and my beautiful baby girl has just reached one month. ¬†So between the two of them, they don’t speak very much, except for awkward sentences and vocalizations along the lines of “Is me all wet?” and “Waaaaaaaahh!” ¬†But despite the lack of an extensive English vocabulary, I’m fairly certain that these two are already communicating…

It’s as if they¬†plan¬†their hysterical, break-mommy’s-heart, tear-filled meltdowns to coincide with the other’s. ¬†It’s like they know¬†that I’m outnumbered.

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Oh, you’re going to hysterically burst into tears, demanding milk from Mama, at a quarter past three? ¬†Great, that works for me too! ¬†I’ll bash my big toe in around then…

It always happens all at once.

Just the other day, I was sitting on the living room floor and pumping breastmilk¬†while¬†attempting to cradle my screaming baby girl. ¬†(If you’ve never tried holding a baby against your chest¬†while¬†pumping, then you totally should. ¬†It’s a riot). ¬† And since I had thought it would be a good idea to bring my toddler’s highchair into the TV room to watch cartoons while I pumped, baked beans were raining down on my head… on the newborn’s head… and on the newly installed carpet.

You know, because I had thought that it was a good idea to feed the stickiest meal¬†ever¬†to my tantrum-throwing toddler… during a part of the day when I couldn’t easily get to him…. all while my baby girl was uncomfortable, screaming, and desperate to be held. ¬†(Come to think of it, purchasing new carpet months before the arrival of a newborn probably wasn’t the smartest decision we’ve ever made either).

You live and you learn, am I right?

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But there I was, once again, surrounded by complete chaos; because my littles decided to impeccably plan their need for attention. ¬†Brady¬†needed¬†to be held and shown love. ¬†Kaitlyn needed to be held upright and secure to help her through a painful acid reflux episode. ¬†‘The girls’ needed to be pumped like two hours ago. ¬†Oh, yeah, and the cats also decided that now would be a¬†great¬†time to sit at my feet and beg earnestly for their lunch.

All…at…once…

And granted, no one is going to die or be injured if they’re left to cry for awhile longer. ¬†But it just seems to happen a little more frequently than I’m comfortable with, and – quite frankly – it breaks my heart. ¬†I’m left having to choose. ¬†Who do I comfort first? ¬†Who do I disappoint?

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Who has to sit in the background while Mommy tends to the other child first?

And the more I ponder that in my head (at a rapidly fast pace), the more my anxiety levels go up.  The more my mommy guilt shoots through the roof.  The more I somehow blame myself for not being able to properly diffuse the situation.

Because I’m a mom… ¬†So obviously, I’m supposed to be able to split myself into two mommy blobs and handle both problems at once. ¬†(Which, for the record, wouldn’t be necessary if my kiddo’s didn’t somehow communicate and sync their schedules so perfectly).

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(…to be continued) ¬†ūüôā

 

 

 

The Third Trimester Life

Have you seen those memes that say something to the affect of “When you’re pregnant, shaving your legs is an Olympic Sport”? ¬†I always thought that meme was funny. ¬†Maybe even clever.

But now that I’m three and a half weeks from my due date, I’m not finding it so humorous. ¬†ūüėČ ¬†Forget shaving… ¬†I can barely handle putting on my pants. ¬†Between ¬†Kaitlyn practicing future ballet moves and digging her chubby toes into my ribcage, the sciatica that’s sending intense pain down my lower back and legs, the exhaustion and breathlessness of anemia, and the ginormous belly? ¬†I can’t bend or get comfortable or walk. ¬†I’m at the point that I have to sit down to just put on my makeup, because I don’t have the energy to stand. ¬†I have to sit down to prepare dinner. ¬†I have to sit down to put on my shoes.

I even have to sit down to eat chocolate if I want to enjoy it!

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I do have this really awesome, penguin waddle going on though. ¬†It’s totally sexy. ¬†I feel like a confident, watermelon-toting Victoria’s Secret model marching down the runway. ¬†Nate seriously can’t take his eyes off me… ¬†(Although I have my suspicions that he’s sympathetically grimacing in pain while he watches me hobble by. ¬†My belly looks as heavy as it feels these days. ¬†I’ve officially passed the cute stage… ¬†left behind the watermelon smuggler phase… ¬†and now I’m entering blimp territory). ¬†¬†

I don’t even know how it’s possible that the 9 months aren’t up yet. ¬†This third trimester really has been never-ending.

50 Funny Pregnancy Memes That Will Make You Pee Without Even Sneezing:

However, during this time, I’ve also mastered the art of kicking things into the air and catching them, which is quite impressive. ¬†Bending down to pick things up is SO two months ago. ¬†Even Brady is in awe of my mad reflexes. ¬†I’m thinking of submitting a tape of myself and applying for America Ninja Warrior. ¬†(I’ll bet being a mom has prepared me for most of the obstacles. ¬†As for the warped wall, all they need to do is put a cup of iced coffee at the top, and – let me tell you – I’d make it up there in record speed. ¬†Not even sure if my sneakers would need to touch the ground to get me up there…).

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In all seriousness though, this pregnancy has been completely different than my pregnancy with Brady. ¬†I was so energized and active during that third trimester. ¬† Of course, in between the energized activity, I did have time to nap and rest. ¬†That doesn’t happen these days… ¬†This time around, things have been¬†much¬†harder, because I’m constantly chasing after an ever-energetic little tyke. ¬†(I feel like I’m even chasing him during the moments that I’m sitting down to pee. ¬†I don’t know how that’s humanly possible, but – trust me – I do it. ¬†Bathroom breaks are seriously no longer breaks… ¬†It’s like trying to relieve yourself while being locked in a restroom with a wild monkey). ¬†

Thanks to the added exhaustion and physical exertion, my body doesn’t seem to want to cooperate, resulting in more uncomfortable and painful pregnancy symptoms than last time. ¬†And most times, my strong-willed toddler cooperates just as well. ¬†ūüėČ ¬† His favorite words right now are “in five minutes, Mama” or “no thanks.”

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The more I reply with “No, Mama, needs you to listen now,” the more he seems to retreat into his little toddler world of Mickey Mouse, icecream, bubbles, and puppies. ¬†Seriously, men get a bad rap for selective hearing, but toddlers have turned that into an art. ¬†They really do live in their own little world! ¬†I say “green beans,” and he hears “icecream”. ¬†I say “time to change your bum,” and he hears “time to dump out all the blocks and play.” ¬†I say “time to put your coat on,” and he hears “let’s dance”.

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It’s a good thing that he’s cute, lovable, absolutely hilarious, and my entire world. ¬†Because he’d be in trouble otherwise. ¬†But, you know, despite the insanity, I just can’t imagine my long, exhausting days without him! ¬†And he really is SUCH a good little boy. ¬†He’s just, well, a toddler. ¬†We’ve all had to go through that stage and drive our mothers a little crazy. ¬†It’s like a requirement for growing up…

But yes, three and a half weeks. ¬†That’s it. ¬†That’s all that’s standing between me and meeting my precious baby girl. ¬†And then, this will ALL be worth it… right down to the hairy legs, swollen feet, and out-of-control hormones.

For now, I’m going to do my best to see the humor. ¬†To focus on our beautiful prize. ¬†To be the best preggo mom that I can possibly be. ¬†And to practice that sexy penguin waddle. ¬†After putting in all this effort to learn it, I don’t want to forget how to do it just because I’m not pregnant anymore! ¬†ūüėČ

50 Funny Pregnancy Memes That Will Make You Pee Without Even Sneezing:

Pregnancy is SUCH a blessing… ¬†but it’s also a tough – often uncomfortable – journey. ¬†Do you have a funny pregnancy story to share?

 

 

When Being Mommy Hurts

There’s no easy way to explain the fierce love that a woman experiences when she becomes a mom. ¬†I was trying to explain it to Nate the other day, and he kind of just looked at me with a slightly confused (or maybe concerned) look on his face. ¬†It just doesn’t make sense when you’re trying to explain it. ¬†But to a mom, it’s reality. ¬†And quite frankly, to every mom reading this, I needn’t go on. ¬†They know what I’m talking about already.

They just get it.

I guess if I were absolutely required to express these emotions and feelings with the help of words, I would say this:  when I became a mom, it was as though a small, treasured piece of me left my body.  And that piece of my heart began to beat on its own, protected only by a beautiful, tiny person that it now lived in.

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This happened the¬†moment¬†I set eyes on my baby boy. ¬†Suddenly, my own self came second. ¬†My whole world (my whole need to protect, and nurture, and care) began to revolve around someone else. ¬†But it didn’t feel like self-sacrifice.

Because that little someone else was a piece of me.

When Brady was in my womb, I constantly prayed over him, worrying about every little thing that could go wrong, and dreamed about the day that he was born.  Then, and only then, would I stop worrying; because then I would physically be able to hold my perfect baby boy in my arms.  Then I could physically protect him with my super-human, mommy strength  and always know that he was okay.  Because I would make sure that he was okay.

But once he was born, I quickly realized that my womb had been a safer place than this world we call home could ever be.  At least then I could carry him in perfect warmth and protection.  At least there, no hurtful words or angry bullies or harmful environments could touch him.  He was safe inside his mommy, soothed to sleep by the sound of my voice and rocking of my movements.

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But suddenly, he was living in this often hurtful, cruel world. ¬†Suddenly, that small piece of me was detached and wasn’t always with me. ¬†Suddenly, I was forced to sometimes leave that piece of my heart with someone else and to trust that he was being cared for the way that I would care for him.

It’s terrifying. ¬†Absolutely terrifying.

My little guy is only two, but there have already been moments that have made me want to whisk him away to a safe place where nothing hurtful can ever touch him. ¬†Kids have already been mean… ¬†He has already faced challenges that made me want to swoop in and solve a problem that¬†he needs to solve himself. ¬†He has learned that sometimes life hurts.

But he is still so sweet and innocent.  Still such a baby.

As he grows, I will have to learn to slowly let go. ¬†To trust that I raised him to be confident, even when the bullies taunt. ¬†To know that God will continue to guide him, even when he isn’t snuggled in my arms for a Bible story. ¬†I will have to be strong enough to let him take flight on his own, knowing that I taught him right from wrong.

As a mom, I look back on my own life with a new sense of respect for everything my parents faced, from letting me cry when my first job overwhelmed me to letting me travel thousands of miles away from home for college. ¬†They knew that fire makes gold burn only brighter. ¬†They knew that those hard moments were only molding me into a stronger, bolder, more confident woman. ¬†They knew that quitting wasn’t an option, and so they guided me and stood with me. ¬†But they didn’t hide me.

They held my hand and let me step out, so that I could learn to shine.

I’ve already come to realize that being mommy is going to hurt sometimes. ¬†Because that little someone who holds a piece of me will hurt sometimes. ¬†And every fiber of my being will scream out to protect and shelter. ¬†But sometimes I’ll have to let go of my baby’s hand, even if it may result in cuts and bruises. ¬†Sometimes I’ll have to trust him to someone else’s care, so that he can learn independence. ¬†I’ll have to watch him attempt challenges that test his endurance, patience, and will. ¬†And sometimes, I’ll have to watch him take a leap, even if he may fall.

Because he may also be ready to fly.

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He’s only two, but I already know just how hard it will be for me to¬†ever¬†see my little guy struggle or hurt. ¬†But at the same time, I also know that the hard moments only strengthen us and prepare us to be strong. ¬†To be confident. ¬†To be leaders.

Sometimes, it’s the tough moments that propel us to greatness and to a more meaningful life than we could have imagined.

One thing I know for sure is this… ¬†As fiercely as I love my baby boy, there is One who loves him even more. ¬†And so I can only raise him the best I can and then trust him into the arms of the Savior who¬†can – and will –¬†always be with him.

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Preggo Journal – Week 30 Recap

How Far Along ‚ÄstI’m 31 weeks, which means 8 weeks until my C-section. ¬†Okay, now I¬†really¬†need to pack my hospital bag! ¬†ūüėČ ¬†And pack Brady’s things… And make sure the hubby has a bag… ¬†And finish washing / organizing the baby things… ¬†And organize a few places in the house.

Yeah, I basically just need to get these projects started and finished, my friends! ¬†ūüôā ¬†Apparently pregnancy brings out the procrastinator in me. ¬†(Or maybe it’s life with a toddler. ¬†I’m pretty sure that has a lot to do with it too).

Baby Name:   Kaitlyn Marie

First and Second Pregnancy, Comparison Pics:  

THEN ‚Äď ¬†(2014)

NOW (2017) ‚Äď

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I‚Äôm Craving / Disliking: ¬†¬†Really no specific cravings. ¬†I feel as though I’ve just been particular… ¬†I’m usually a foodie who loves everything, but I’ve been very picky this pregnancy. ¬†Like if someone offers to bring icecream over, I have a long list of flavors that they¬†shouldn’t¬†bring. ¬†Ha, ha. ¬†(For the record, normally I’ll eat¬†any¬†flavor of icecream). ¬†For some reason though, I’ve been very specific about flavors during this pregnancy, whether it’s dessert or an entree.

Exercise: ¬†I didn’t get any structured exercise in this week (as the temps dropped), but honestly chasing after Brady all day does count for something. ¬†ūüėČ ¬†I’m always on my feet, walking, carrying him or other things, and just all-around moving. ¬†They should make a workout video that’s called ‘Toddler Mom’. ¬†Seriously, it’s a full body workout!

Awkward Moment:   I survived the week without any awkwardness!

A Moment I Don‚Äôt Want to Forget: ¬†While I was in line at the grocery store yesterday afternoon, an elderly veteran behind me pointed at my belly and said, “Miss, I just want you to know that I’ll be praying for a healthy pregnancy and delivery for mama and baby.” I thanked him for his thoughtfulness, adding that I appreciate every single prayer! And he said, “I go to church a lot so don’t think I’ll forget to pray for you!” Then he showed me pictures of his one-year-old granddaughter whom he was obviously very much infatuated with. I was completely touched by his kindness and by how sweet he was that I came dangerously close to bursting into tears. Oh pregnancy hormones!! ¬†It was just a really special moment and reminded me that this insane world is still filled with wonderful people.

Ooh, AND I received my C-section paperwork in the mail just the other day! ¬†My surgery has been scheduled for May 4th at 7:30am (which means Nate and I have to be at the hospital for 5:30am). ¬†It’s SO weird to have a scheduled date and to know when I’m going to meet my precious baby girl. ¬†At the same time, it is a little bit convenient, since I can arrange child-care for Brady that much easier. ¬†ūüėČ ¬†But still, please keep me and my nerves in your prayers! ¬†I’m starting to get a tiny bit nervous about it… ¬†C-sections do come with their risks, and the recovery afterward is no joke. ¬†I’m just praying for a safe surgery and also that my recovery won’t be too bad (especially since I have a toddler at home this time around). ¬†Honestly, last time, my recovery was pretty great; but I don’t want to get my hopes up that it’ll happen again. ¬†ūüėČ

Something I Miss: ¬†Energy. ¬†And being able to bend down. ¬†And coffee. ¬†(As of two weeks ago, coffee gives me heartburn, so I’ve had to give up my treasured decaf).

Sleep: ¬†Despite having to wake up every two hours to pee, I’m actually sleeping pretty well still.

To-Do List Completions:  Other than baby shopping, I got nothing done this week.  Yeah, I know, I need to get on that.

Purchases:¬† I have basically everything I need now for when baby Kaitlyn arrives… except for clothes. ¬†I’ll probably focus on buying that closer to my due date.

Symptoms: ¬†On Friday, I was diagnosed with SPD (or something like that. HA!). ¬†Basically it has to do with my pelvis (or something like that). ¬†Honestly, I have no idea what it is… ¬†The doctor used big words and had a thick accent; so once I realized that it was nothing serious (and that it would go away on its own after the pregnancy), I kind of dazed off and just nodded in agreement to whatever was being said to me. ¬†*sheepish grin* What I do know for sure is that it’s giving me sharp pains in my upper thigh every time I move, so – yeah – it’s no fun.

I also have on-and-off nausea, backaches, heartburn, never-ending Braxton Hicks contractions, headaches, and extreme exhaustion. ¬†This pregnancy is definitely a¬†lot¬†tougher than Brady’s pregnancy was (although I’m suspicious that much of that has to do with the fact that I’m running after a toddler all day). ¬†ūüėČ ¬†Still, I’m in good spirits, and I don’t complain… too much. ¬†Ha, ha!! ¬†I figured that pregnancy gives me¬†some¬†right to complain on occasion to my hubby. ¬†And thankfully, he’s very understanding and hugs me after my vent sessions. ¬†ūüôā

Final thought: ¬† ¬†Nate and I really do plan for this to be our last pregnancy… ¬†And although I’m not a huge fan of the process (despite the fact that it IS a huge blessing), ¬†I’ve decided that I’m going to really embrace the remaining 8 weeks of the pregnancy… aches and ALL! ¬†It really is a miraculous process, even if it involves discomfort and frustration at times, AND it is a very special time. ¬†So I’m going to embrace it for as long as I can. ¬†ūüôā