Mothers-Don’t give up

Mother.

I think I often take for granted how strong I am as a mother and how deep my influence is. I think about how I change diapers, wash in between his toes, scrub his hair, and spread the peanut butter on his sandwiches, and wonder if what I say is even sinking in.

“Am I even making a difference? Will he remember what I’m trying to teach?”

For the first few months as a mother, I almost felt like my efforts were in vain. I talked, giggled, laughed, read to, and sang to my son that was almost completely unresponsive. I held on conversations with him, even though he didn’t answer back; I told him my deepest dreams while we played; I told him of my deepest convictions–yet nothing. I almost felt silly at times. On the surface, it seemed there was no hint of understanding.

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Then, he began to talk. He began to respond. Now he even talks back and we can carry on a conversation. But, now I almost wonder if he hears me when I tell him how much I believe in God, how I know He hears my prayers, how I feel peace when I read His word. He runs from toy to toy and it feels like the words of my heart go in one ear and out the other–and that’s if I get lucky and they even get in the first ear at all.

But, despite all this, I have the firmest belief that in some small way he understands. He may not hear my words or listen to a complete sentence I say–but he sees me day in and day out. He sees that I care about people, he knows that I invite him to pray with me when I’m about to lose it and need extra strength, he knows that every night-without fail-we read God’s word.

We live our beliefs.

I have to think that someday he’ll look back and it will sink in–it will sink in deep.

I hope with all my heart it does.

I know that as a mother, my daily actions have more power than I realize, even if it seems like he’s not listening, we’re both crying, and there is peanut butter in everyone’s hair. I know that the simple things I do, that I feel go unnoticed–are not.

The things you do don’t go unnoticed either.

When the real history of mankind is fully disclosed, will it feature the echoes of gunfire or the shaping sound of lullabies? The great armistices made by military men or the peacemaking of women in homes and in neighborhoods? Will what happened in cradles and kitchens prove to be more controlling than what happened in congresses? – Neal A. Maxwell

Mom’s lets remember the influence we have. Let’s remember that the words we speak, the songs we sing, and hugs we give don’t go unnoticed–even if our babies are speechless and our kids run around like crazies. Because what a sad thing it would be if we gave up–if we looked around amid the chaos and threw in the towel.

Momma–don’t give up. Keep talking to your babe who can’t talk back and keep teaching that child who doesn’t have a moment to listen. Because soon, they’ll know and we’ll be glad we taught with our hearts and didn’t give up.

Healthy & Fit Pregnancy- Group info inside!

Well, the second trimester is lovely. I’m 16 weeks along and I feel like I’m mostly back to the old me, aside from the occasional headaches, stretching pains, and back aches. But, I’ll take it and I’m happy!

With this new found energy, as well as lack of nauseousness, I find myself eating allll the time and wanting to cook things. I felt like my body was just yearning from the inside out.. “feeeeed meeeee!!!” So, that is just what I did. I think I am back up to my pre-pregnancy weight, which is good. Now, the trick is for me to get out of that mindset of stuffing my face with food. I’m trying to re-train my brain that I don’t need to eat a lot of whatever sounds good. It may have worked when only one or two things sounded good during a day, but now that 50 things sound good… no bueno. It’s back to balance and remembering that I need to stop when I feel full, and to choose good foods to eat.

It’s tough though. It is hard to re-train a brain and harder to actually act on it.

But that is my goal.

My goal is an active pregnancy. My goal is to eat well and be active, in hopes that life will never be like the swinging of a pendulum, going back and forth from a “I don’t care about my health, I just want to eat what I want to eat” attitude to “I’m counting my calories, exercising all the time” mentality. Nor do I want to sign off on healthy eating and exercise simply because life is just hard right now. Life never stops being hard, and in fact when I eat worse, life gets exponentially harder. I feel guilty, I feel gross, I lose confidence, and I just feel lethargic. It’s not worth it.

SO… after all that. I guess what I’m implying is that I’m going to strive to be active and healthy this pregnancy. I’m not going to overdue it, because that isn’t balanced, but I am going to try to exercise–do at least some form of exercise each day. Something.

I want to give myself a variety and do aerobic activities and strength training. And in general, I’m going to try to watch my portions and try to opt for more whole, nutrient dense, foods. Of course I’ll give into cravings, that is life, and I don’t pretend to be able to not eat sweets. I love sweets and they will always be a part of my life. Guaranteed. But, I’m going to try not to eat them alll the time as the main course or side dish to breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

So, my question is: do you know anyone who is pregnant and feels like-minded? Or do you know someone who is hoping to be pregnant soon and preparing their body for the transition? If so, please send them to THIS Facebook group. It’s totally free and just for encouragement, ideas, and sharing our life.

Pregnancy Facebook Group Cover FinalI want to be accountable for myself and I often find I do SO much better when I see others around me striving to do the same. And I don’t think I’m alone in this. I’d love to motivate others around me too. Because why have to work so hard postpartum to “get our bodies back”, when we could have a better pregnancy, labor, and postpartum if we focused on health during the journey of pregnancy? Anyway, now I’m rambling. Here’s to a healthy life!

To my unborn child: My heart still yearns for you

{This post was written before I found out I was pregnant. It was a Sunday afternoon, and I was feeling the loss of previous negative tests along with wondering about what the future would hold. I sat down on my in-laws porch and wrote this out on my phone…}

My heart today is at peace, but still yearning–sincerely, sincerely yearning that I will be pregnant with our next little one. I pray for that child and anxiously await the day I will know it is coming–on its way.

In my heart, I know the day will come. In my heart, I know that things will happen according to the will of God and His perfect timing. But even though I feel that peace, my heart still loves my unborn child; my heart still yearns.

You see, I’m starting to feel that a mother’s love knows no bounds. My love transcends earth and life. It leaps to an unborn child still safely in the arms of God in Heaven.

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My love feels a special kindred love towards our child. I feel as though the child is close by and knows me as his or her mother. And I yearn. I yearn for the day that we can meet face to face, skin to skin, and welcome it into our family.

Even though I’m at peace knowing that God understands and that he is guiding my process of conception, I still feel a deep, deep yearning that cannot be simply put in the back of my head, or forgotten.

I love my unborn child and I yearn for the day I will learn it is on its way into our loving arms.

I would love to connect with you! You can find me on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to get more daily updates. 🙂 Thank you for being apart of my life!

He asked to hold my hand

This little boy has got my heart. He tugs not only on my hand as he takes me from room to room around the house to play, but he tugs at my heart strings, too. He’s tender, he’s kind, and he tells me he is brave. “Brave” he will say with conviction.

But even though he is trying to be brave, he is still a boy who needs his mama, and I’m glad. Because this mama still wants her little boy. After all, nowadays there is less rocking, the closeness of nursing is a distant memory, and cuddles are becoming fewer and farther between as he grows more independent day by day. But even though he’s growing, I long for those moments of just being close–the two of us.

The other day after he was hard at play for a while, we climbed in the car to drive home and there he was in the back. He suddenly said aloud, “Hold hand.” I looked back and there he was reaching for my hand. “Hold hand” he said again. He situated his hand just right and then he looked out the window-Just content- “cloud!” and “mountain!” he exclaimed.

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It was this moment that I was so grateful for. For a couple moments my boy was back in my reach. Just him and I, and the clouds and mountains within our grasp.

“A mother holds her children’s hands for a while, their hearts forever.”- Unknown

He may not reach back and hold my hand for much longer, in fact, in a matter of a few short years, I don’t think he’d be caught dead doing that. But forever, we’ll be close. He’ll be my little, rascal boy, and I’ll be his mom–forever.

Why I’m glad I am a woman

In light of recent events in the media, as well as personal experiences, I started to feel this overwhelming sense of gratitude for the fact that I am a woman and what that means.

What does it mean to me to be a woman? It means being a steadying influence in the lives of those around me. It means emitting love, gentleness, and kindness. It means embracing my femininity. It means being sensitive and available to those who need support and love. It means supporting those around me and letting the beauty of my spirit grace the walls of my home.

I know its hard to believe, but this is my wife

I love the fact that my spirit is innately different than my husband’s;that his traits divinely complement mine and that together we make a delicate-strong, supportive-protective, compassionate-courageous…pair. I love that my boy will run to me when he feels hurt, and that he’ll run to his dad when he’s ready to roll around on the floor and wrestle (not that we don’t wrestle, too). I love that he’ll cuddle up with both of us and shower us both with kisses, because he appreciates what we each mean in his life.

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Being a woman really is something special. Being a mother is a calling and the greatest expression of my femininity. In fact, I feel as a mother that I have enlarged my capabilities and found more of myself. I am more caring, more compassionate, more gentle, more delicate, more gracious, more creative. Let’s be honest, some days I don’t feel like I’m good at any of those, but really, I believe those qualities are something that settle naturally within me. If I’m not them, I have a strong desire to be them.

In an talk by James E. Faust he says some of the most beautiful things about women:

One of your unique, precious, and sublime gifts is your femininity, with its natural grace, goodness, and divinity. Femininity is not just lipstick, stylish hairdos, and trendy clothes. It is the divine adornment of humanity. It finds expression in your qualities of your capacity to love, your spirituality, delicacy, radiance, sensitivity, creativity, charm, graciousness, gentleness, dignity, and quiet strength. It is manifest differently in each girl or woman, but each of you possesses it. Femininity is part of your inner beauty.

I love that. I love that womanhood can be defined by such wonderful words: charm, creativity, radiance, dignity, and graciousness.

The truth of it all is–I love being a woman.