Wednesday, July 27, 2011


Do you ever feel like Cinderella? Everyone else is always one step ahead of you. Someone else always seems to get what you want. You work and work and yet you feel like you are going nowhere. You are at the bottom of the totem pole while all of friends are surpassing you with success, children, and even finances; when is your turn?

Jealousy; seems so easy to run from, and yet we all seem to struggle with this to some degree. We crave what others have whether it is one’s body, house, money, or even their personality. We all fight to not fall into this scary dark pit, but yet sometimes it’s hard to see when we are even there.

                We live in a society that surrounds us with visions that thin is in and the more money you have the better you are. Unless you are the hit of the party then you are nobody at all. Our children are all ready introduced to an extreme amount of peer pressure to fit in and belong at a very young age. Instead of working hard for nice things or receiving them as birthday gifts; top dollar bags and purses are now back to school items for many children.

                I am no stranger to this jealous trap. It is even worse when it is someone you love. You love them and long to be happy for them, and yet deep down you desire the gift they have been given; pregnancy, a baby.  After Bethany died, I craved so deeply what other mothers had. I wanted to be a new mother taking care of my baby. I would see so many women I knew who were pregnant and it just didn’t seem fair; I wanted it. I struggled for so long when I would hear pregnant women complain because I would have given anything to go back and feel my little girl alive inside of me again…it angered me.

                The problem with jealousy is that it is so hard to let go of because it follows you wherever you go. I have found that my jealousy is not just of newborns anymore. Now, any baby I see that would be Bethany’s age, I long for. When I see a mother with four children I can’t help but think, that should be my life.

                God clearly states that jealousy is wrong, and yet it is so hard to overcome. We…(I) have such a hard time letting go of what I can’t have and accepting that my life is perfect the way God wanted it. I know that and I have to convince myself of that on a daily basis. I have to turn my jealous heart and feelings over to my God who has a perfect plan for MY life. I might think I want what everyone else has, or feel like others get things before I do, but God’s timing is perfect for MY life.

                I am learning that when God does bless me, it means that much more because I have waited for it, and I know it is my turn in HIS eyes. I am learning to let go of the "perfect" life so many others appear to have. When one door closes in my own life, I know God is going to open another door, sometimes I just have to be patient.

                Are you willing to let go of the jealousy trap we all seem to fall prey  too? How can we focus on the blessings God has given us if we are too busy focusing on what others have?
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Thursday, July 21, 2011


“I said, lights out!”

I could feel my stress level rising as I see the bathroom light flip on again for the tenth time this evening. I had already put three children in out of bed to many times to count. 

As I begin to walk down stairs to my bed, which is practically screaming my name, I hear the sound of tears coming from upstairs. 

I drag my tired body back up the stairs and make my way closer to the bathroom. I swing the door open and my mouth spills with words I wish I could take back, “Why are you sitting here crying? It is way too late and I said to go to bed.”  My eleven year old daughter and I had already gotten into a disagreement only moments before, and I was quick to assume the tears were a reflection of her anger towards me. 

My heart sunk as her swollen little face looked up at me with a fear I had never seen in her. “I don’t want to go back to school, please don’t make me. I have no friends and the kids will make fun of me. I’m scared mom.” 

Here sat a little girl who for months was growing up faster than I could blink. She is getting taller by the day and longing for independence. She has a style and personality that beacons others to love her, and yet the cruelty of others has given her an insecurity my heart can’t take. 

She loves to be loved, and wants the world to like her. 

“Mom, you don’t understand, you have never felt like this.” Oh how these words crippled my heart. I longed to make her see that I did understand and I had been in her shoes way too many times. 

I too wanted to be liked and loved, but never quite felt like I fit in. I was quickly plagued as the church girl throughout so much of school. I dressed the part and tried to act cool, while my insides were screaming to follow Christ. I walked the daily battle of fitting in or standing out.  I wanted to stand out that Christ was Lord of my life, and yet my immaturity often blinded my vision. 

Why is growing up so hard?

Why is my innocent and sweet little girl rapidly turning into a young lady with the same insecurities that once crippled me?

For weeks, I have selfishly been dreading the fact that my first born is about to start middle school. I want to go back in time when she was little and had no fears….I never once stopped to remember how scary this transition really was and is. I remember feeling lost and alone, and wondered if I would see anyone I knew on the first day of school. 

Elementary school seems so easy and predictable to her….Middle school is a whole new world. A world she is terrified to enter. A world where she may or may not have friends. A world where I can no longer hold her hand, and make it all better. 

I long for my sweet little girl….I long to take away her pain. I want to protect her, and yet I am a bystander, waiting, watching, and praying…

I tuck her back into bed as I walk downstairs. I no longer feel a need to sleep, as my heart feels empty and lost. I felt as though I had no words of comfort for her. My eyes begin to feel with tears as I try and process feeling like a helpless mother. Just as I felt like she was a thousand miles away, I see my door crack open. She throws her arms around me and says, “I love you mom.”  I hug her tightly and pray for God to give me the strength to guide her through this new journey. 

I feel so inadequate to be the mother she needs. She is searching for answers, and I have none to give. 

I am reminded that through my weakness, Christ is manifested. I have no clue how to be the mother she wants or needs throughout these undoubtedly trying pre-teen years, but I do know that Christ is my guide. 

 (UPDATE:  I wrote this a few weeks ago….as each day school gets closer to starting, she seems to be doing better. We are starting to get her a few things for the new year and I think she is starting to get ready for this new transition. Please keep her and me in your prayers as we start this new journey!)
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Friday, July 15, 2011

Let the Thunder ROLL!!!!

When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears and delivers them out of all their troubles. The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Many are the afflictions of the righteous, but the Lord delivers him out of them all. He keeps all his bones; not one of them is broken.     Psalm 34:17-20

The thunder is rolling and the streets are flowing as the rain continues to pour. I could sit and listen to the rain for hours, I just love it!

I had a hard time getting up this morning because I was in awe listening to thunder roll across the sky and gently rattle my house. My kids all came running in my room as the ever growing thunder became louder and louder.

They were scared....I was calm....

I quickly told them they had nothing to be scared of and that the thunder was from God. I told them how it reminded me of His great love and Power.

I think of the power a storm really has. Houses, towns, and peoples life's have been completely destroyed at the work of thunder, lighting, wind and rain. The power of a storm can destroy anything and everything in its path and many times within seconds.

I think to the storms in our own life's. How many times are we in the darkest moment of our life and the storm is taking us under faster then we can catch our breath? I know I have often felt like I was stuck in the middle of a street and the wind and rain began poring down as hard as it possible could, and I was stuck. No matter how fast I ran for shelter, the thunder got louder and the rain heavier....I was drowning within.

Storms of any nature have extreme power. Power to wipe away our very existence or confidence in what we thought was stable.

The truth is; a storm is not stable. It is strong, powerful, and completely unpredictable.  However, God is also strong and powerful. He has the power to make the wind roar and the rain stop at His command. He also has the power to calm whatever storm is taking over your life; my life.

The thunder reminds me that God is in control and He is still here watching over me day by day. When I feel like my personnel storms are taking over, I have to let go and LET GOD! Let God have the control that only He can calm the storm.

The storm is coming.....Are you going to be scared or calm? Are you going to give God complete control?

I found this quote:

"God sometimes calms the storm; and other times, He lets the storm rage and calms the soul."
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Thursday, July 14, 2011

He's 9!!!

My Baby....1 day old....July 12, 2002

It seems like yesterday I was calling him "baby Gabe". He is the only one my water broke with...I can still remember putting Kayla in the stroller and Brad and I were going for a walk after dinner. We got half way down the street when I stopped, looked at Brad with a very strange face and said, "I think I just wet my pants"! Of course, Brad laughed. We turned around and by the time we got back to the house I looked at him and said, "It's still coming out"! We both knew by this point that my water had broke and we were going to have a baby. We went to the hospital at 6:30 p.m. and Gabe was born at 4:37 a.m at 7lbs 8 oz and 19 1/2 in. I was up ALL night in the WORST labor ever. My epidural did not take, so I basically felt everything. It was a hard labor, but the moment I held him, I was in love. I was tired, hurting, and hungry, but my heart was exploding with the love I felt for this little boy.

I can't believe that was 9 years ago. I am so proud of the young boy he is becoming. He is so smart and talented and I get to watch him grow and achieve new goals daily. I am so blessed to have him in my life and I am proud to be his mother. Happy Birthday sweet boy!!!!

Gabe and his "baseball" cake

Gabe, Kayla, Brayson, and friend Ethan

Gabe and his new game for the x-box

Gabe playing his new game :)
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Sunday, July 10, 2011

Saying Good-Bye

“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good not for disaster, to give you a future and hope.” Jeremiah 29:11

I kissed her and said good bye as my heart melted away. I watched as the last of my baby days walked away, and the tears streamed from my eyes. I knew this moment was coming, but my heart did not want to let go. I wanted to hold on forever to that face, that smile, and that little person who has changed my life in so many ways. 

          She was 11 weeks old when she first came into my life. The moment I laid eyes on her, I was in love.  So many people questioned me when I told them I was going to start keeping a newborn. They were scared and nervous that it would be too hard for me after Bethany’s death. I have to admit; there was a part of me that was nervous as well, but I have now learned that God sent this family and precious little girl into my life.  I was still hurting so deeply over Bethany and questing God so much. As I began to watch Bella, I began to imagine what Bethany might have been like and what my life might have been like with her still here. I believe that God sent me Bella to give me a glimpse of what my angel would have been like. I was able to experience all the wonderful adventures of the first year of a baby’s life because they entrusted me with their baby. I know that through Bella I was able to truly heal over Bethany’s death and I can never thank them enough for that gift. 

          I have loved her as if she were my own. I know when she is happy, sad, or getting sick. I know when she is tired, hungry or just cranky. I loved when she would run up to me and give me a hug, bring me a book to read, and most recently say my name. She has a personality that will go miles and a smile that will melt your heart. I have been beyond blessed to have this little girl as a part of my life. 

          As I was packing up all of Bella’s things on Friday, my heart was breaking by the minute. I was emptying my cabinets and house of every last baby item. I am not only saying good bye to Bella, but I am saying good bye to the baby days. No more babies, no more diapers, no more little ones for me to take care of. This part of my life is really over.

          You see; for a long time, I think there was a part of me that thought I could hold on to a piece of Bethany if I had a little one in my house. The truth is; Bethany is gone. No matter what I try and hold onto I cannot go back and experience her life as a baby. I can’t get any moment I want with her because it does not exist. Keeping babies around my house will only prolong my hurting and my healing. It’s time to let go….It’s time to move on. 

          I will never let go of my love for my daughter. I will never let go of her memory or the lessons I have learned through her death. I will always keep her a part of my life and my heart forever, but I can’t keep pretending and wishing she were still here. I have to accept that God has great plans for her memory and for my life from here until Eternity.

          God gave me an amazing gift through Bella. I was able to hold on to a baby I so desperately wanted for a brief period of time. The time is over, and I feel like I just gave back a piece of my heart that was never really mine. 

          “Thank you God for Your gift of love, grace and mercy. Thank you for giving me Bella to allow me to love and smile when I never thought I would again.  Thank you for reminding me that I don’t have to keep babies to keep Bethany alive in my heart. Thank you for once again guiding me through another dark road…..”

 My Sweet Bella....
 Good-bye baby days....hello to a new life I know God has in store!

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Thursday, July 7, 2011

Be Still

“Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth." – Psalm 46: 10

Do you ever feel like the world around you is caving in so fast you can't stop yourself from sinking under?  This feels like my life latley and I can't seem to figure out why. It's not like things are bad, there is just a lot to be done and a lot to think about right now.

This morning I could feel myself feeling very down...almost angry in fact. I was folding laundry and going through the checklist of problems in my head....It seems like when you are trying to be financial smart, everything goes wrong at the same time.....the

outrageously  expensive water and electric bill, the fact that ALL of my kids need schools clothes,
the very hard test I have to take in a week, 2 of my kids have birthdays coming up, and the fact that I still have NO job.....I could feel the anxiety swelling from within as all these thoughts were chasing each other round and round in my head. I could feel Christ

saying....BE STILL....

I began to hear thunder rolling outside and lighting flash across the sky. The storm quickly got very loud and very bad. The sky opened up and the rain began to pour down from the Heavens.

As I sat and just listened to the sound of the rain, I began to think of the amazing power of Christ. The power to make thunder roll, lighting strike, and rain flood the streets. I watched as the rain water rolled down the streets, washing away dirt and any inpurites away with it. I then began to think how much more Christ can do with me if I am just willing to be still and wait upon Him.

So often, we all get so wrapped up in financial, social, or even physical worries, that we let them consume our thoughts to the point our minds are racing out of control with worry. I wonder how many times Christ is just waiting for us to stop and be still and wait on Him to lead us in the right direction.

 The truth is, it's not easy for anyone right now. Everyones electric bill is higher than normal, most people are trying to learn to stretch money in this economy, and who knows the other problems so many are facing behind closed doors.

 I am blessed. My husband has a great job  and I have a healthy family. Seasons in life will be frustrating, but remember to be STILL, and let God guide you throughout those times in your life.
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