“I don’t feel ready…I’m so scared of getting in over my head…I’m just really scared.”
This past week, I found these words written in a prayer journal I had forgotten about that has sat on my bookshelf for years. They were written a mere seven months before I got married.
Our dating relationship was very tumultuous. We are just two so totally different people. We fought a lot and misunderstood each other constantly. He wasn’t adjusting well to the Army, even in his first few months in, and I could just sense that our marriage would not be an easy one.
“Real mom” is really a poor choice of words though.
I’m no more or less real than the mom who keeps a tidy home, the mom who rises early each morning, the mom who never gets behind on laundry, or the mom who exercises every day.
I used to think that those moms weren’t being honest with the world, hence the phrase “real mom.” But it turns out that some of these moms actually exist. I’m friends with a few of them, and we’ve talked about some of these things.
While the phrases “real mom” or “keepin it real” may not be the best choice of words, they are true to the extent that here, on my blog, I show you my reality of mothering through chronic illness and family stress.
Happy end of February! I still feel like I didn’t do much blog reading this month (and I’m enjoying the respite) but somehow I still managed to find some AMAZING links to share with you all today! I hope that these posts will encourage and bless your heart today!
Today we had Ezra evaluated through our public school district’s special needs department as a candidate for special-needs preschool.
I don’t think I have felt so proud in a long time.
Ezra excelled and shined in every single evaluation. It did my heart good.
Much as I expected, it appears that he will not qualify for the services that they offer in their department (although they haven’t give us a final answer on that as there are still some other processes that they need to go through).
In spite of that, I am so glad we followed this trail of research. Each woman who spoke with me and evaluated him was so full of encouragement and understanding. They heard all of my concerns. They were so impressed. They told me I was doing a good job and that they were amazed at how much I have taught him. They told me that my son didn’t have autism or aspergers or any other behavioral or cognitive deficits, yet didn’t make me feel like I shouldn’t be there or act like I was crazy for wondering.
There was one test that they gave him in which they took him to a higher level than they had ever taken a child before.
I heard a lot of wow and that’s really good and I’ve never seen that before.
And I sat, only able to hear him, not see him – but sat there smiling, beaming, swelling, and laughing at his precocious answers to their questions. Today I just felt so glad to be Ezra’s mommy. And I haven’t felt that way in a really long time. Continue reading →
She isn’t real. I know that. She is pixels and enhancements, or maybe even plastic and implants. But either way, she isn’t real.
(And, if by some miracle, she really is that thin, that perfect, that flawless – then she probably lives a very different lifestyle than I and most other women are able to live.)
I curse her for what she has done – what she is doing – to our boys, to our men. She flaunts and exposes. Over time, they start believing that she is what is desirable. And the more they believe and the more they desire, the more she flaunts – and I start believing it too.
I start wondering why God would make my body so imperfect and undesirable.
She is the forbidden, the unattainable – and yet so accessible. With a click or a swipe or the push of the remote button, he can have her, fantasize about her and about being with her. From the youngest to the oldest, the most sheltered to the most worldly – he is lusting after her because she is what he knows he cannot have; and yet she is right there for him to feast his lusts upon. The forbidden becomes his controlling desire.
Once he has tasted of her forbidden fruit, it’s hard for him to go back.
I have 37 minutes to write. This day has gone by way too fast. I have gone from carving out every minute of whitespace that I can find and squeezing everything I can into them to having close to 20 hours of space each week that is mine, all mine, to use as wisely as possible.
It’s overwhelming. My brain is scattered and even my lists don’t seen to help because I get going on one thing and end up doing another…because I can. And I go to the grocery store by myself (and all the moms say amen) but before I do, I head into a consignment store…because I can. I stay for 15 minutes and don’t buy a thing and now I’m kicking myself for not using that 15 minutes to work on this post.
My brain is exhaling and it’s going to take some time for me to harness and wrangle this time and make it work for me and for this family in a way that is wise, efficient, and practically freeing.
Right now, it’s hard for you to see beyond the first time. You have desires that you don’t understand how to harness and you are thankful that he’s two time zones away because that space is about the only thing helping you maintain your last shred of purity.
Can I tell you somethings about your future?
The first time will hurt like heck yet somehow be sweet all at the same time. But this letter isn’t about the first time. Because that’s only the beginning.
Right now, it only takes you about .0026521 seconds to jump into the realm of the intimate in your mind. But six years from now it will sometimes take you two hours, sometimes even two days.
You will have so much on your mind at any given moment. Lists upon lists of responsibilities, tasks to do, hats to wear. Loving him is only a part of all you will become, and sometimes, it will be the hardest part Continue reading →
There’s been a lot of cold weather, some bouts of snow. (As I write, we are currently snowed in and tomorrow will be our third day in a row stuck at home with nothing to do!) These weeks leading up to Ezra’s 3 1/2 year mark in March have been very very tumultuous for him. His behavior has been really difficult to manage (which you can read about in this post from my perspective and in this post from my husband’s perspective).
But there have been a lot of positive things going on.
My husband and I are actively pursuing starting back up professional counseling both as a couple and individuals through the local vet center. We’ve only gone through intake so far and haven’t gotten quite into the actual sessions but that will be happening soon!
We have enrolled Ezra in a three-day a week, full day preschool program to give us some much needed whitespace and to give him interaction with other children and the ability to form relationships. I’ll be talking about this in an upcoming post because this was a very emotional decision for me. (I’d like to share some of my thoughts about it, especially when I was very vocal in an earlier post about how he wasn’t in preschool.)
There have been some other positive changes going on that I’m not quite ready to share as of yet, but hopefully soon I can share some good news with you all. There’s a lot of things we are waiting on that will hopefully offer us a little better financial and every-day life situations in the near future, but for now we are in a holding pattern waiting for those things to take off! (Sorry for the crypticness here, and no, I’m not pregnant in case your brain was going there…)
I feel like our family is headed in a very good direction, coming out of a very complex and difficult year as we have transitioned out of the Army.
Day after day, teenage me sat on my bed with the sun pouring in over a handwritten list of prayer requests. His name was on it and I prayed for him to find her. I prayed that he would find the love he so desired, and so deserved. I prayed for her to be good to him.
In those days, our phone would ring. An old yellowed actual landline with a cord that seemed to stretch a good 15-20 feet. I loved to answer especially when I heard his teasing voice on the other end of the line. He wasn’t calling for me, but he called me nicknames and we shared moments just the same.
As I finally sit down to write this letter to you, I am frustrated. Really frustrated. While, yes, I did get to sleep in this morning, the rest of the day I have felt tension rising within me. These little battles between me and this tiny soul entrusted to my care wear me down day-in and day-out.
Playdate plan A didn’t go well. Two little boys did more fighting and crying than playing. So we loaded them into the car and drove the few miles to Chick Fil A to see if a different setting would help the situation. My child wouldn’t sit down and eat. I threatened that we would leave, and he called my bluff. I followed through and we left mid-lunch without ever stepping foot in the play place.
We came home and attempted to finish lunch (we failed), spent too long on a fine-motor skills activity that had me losing patience more than I would like to admit. And finally, he’s down for a nap.
I’ve seen this search term or variations come up from time to time, more frequently of late. I think this illness and weather probably has a lot to do with it.
im tired of being a good mother
Today, you are that mom…a mom who has “grown weary in well-doing.” And I am that mom too.
I took a huge step back from reading blogs this month. It is a struggle for me because I love reading blogs – and as a blogger I know how much I desire my words to be read and shared, so I try to give that back to other bloggers as well. But, I am only one person, and in an effort to create whitespace for my mind and family, reading blogs is something that just has had to give.
I do have a few links I would like to share with you though. I hope you find them thought-provoking.
Let There Be Space
“God’s Word breathes a fresh message on the very first page of Scripture — a message that resonates deep in my heart: Create space.”
If You’ve Ever Regretted a Little Vulnerability
Sister, if you risked a little vulnerability and the results weren’t pretty, I’m so sorry. Don’t see it as confirmation that you’re a hot mess; see it as the realization that the person you chose to share with probably isn’t safe.
At 5:55 AM the sounds started coming though the baby monitor.
Last night it took nearly two hours of rocking and crying to finally get the boy to pass out at 9 PM.
If morning breath can silently moan, then mine sure did. Everything in me wanted to turn the monitor off and go back to sleep.
But the words “forced introversion” and “maybe too much time alone for a three-year-old” rang in my ears. The words came from a friend, a well-intentioned one. (A lot of what she said was helpful so friend-who-knows-who-you-are, we are good, girl.)
This child of mine has brought me to the end of myself this week. No really. At one point I actually laid on the floor in front of him crying.
If you have not already, I would love for you to take a moment to read my awkward introduction to this post and what inspired me to write on this topic that is quickly becoming close to my heart.
For the married women:
1. See your single friend as what she is: first and foremost, a woman, just like yourself! She is a daughter of God, a beautiful creation, and someone worth taking the time to know. You probably have far more in common that you realize. She is not lesser than you because she has not married or borne children. Continue reading →