Motherhood doesn’t just happen

I used to believe motherhood would just happen to me.

We celebrate Mother’s Day as the day we were made a mom–when our first child entered our arms and graced our lives.

It’s the day we became a mother.

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Although that is technically true, I have to say my Mother’s Day is not the second Sunday in May, or the day my son was born, but instead an ordinary day in December.

I remember it clearly. It was at the end of my first semester back to school after having Parker. Sam and Parker were both very sick. To top it off, Sam and I were busy as well–swamped with both our jobs and end of the year projects.

I was up in the middle of the night, rocking my sick baby who was struggling to sleep, and all of a sudden things changed for me. It was like a lightning bolt. All of a sudden I was ready to be a mom. I was ready to put my family first. As strange as it is to admit, for the first time, I cared more about Sam and Parker, than I did about my schooling, my goals, or my dreams.

That is when I decided to be a mom.

Yes, my boy had come 8 months before. But this is when I changed from being his primary caregiver, to his mother; when I decided I’d rather be mom than anything else. 

No matter when we became a mom, if the birth was planned or not, we need to choose motherhood–choose that our children, their hearts, and their lives are more important. It seems that to really embrace motherhood, we need to let go of some things. Because at least in my life, my family just wanted me, not my accomplishments, my degree, or anything else.

Was motherhood a natural transition for you, or did it take you a while to feel like a mother? How have you learned to sacrifice and make your family your first priority? I would love to hear about your experiences as well as your advice!

From uglies to beauties

Lately sitting down to write has not come easy. Partly because I’ve felt my thoughts have been anything but inspirational, hopeful, or weaved together well.

So here are my broken words–

Life has left me broken; feeling acutely aware of all my faults, all I lack, and how I’ve fallen short of who I want to be. For a whole slew of reasons I’ve come face to face with a version of myself I always tried to ignore or simply believed was not really part of me, but part of a situation.

“No, that’s not me, that’s part of my postpartum depression.”

“No, that’s not me, it’s part of the stress of moving twice in just over a month.”

“No, that’s not me, that’s part of being sleep deprived and up all night with Parker.

No, no, no, no, no….

But, I’m done with the excuses. I’m tired of letting my temper and my unruly side get the better of me. I’m tired of dumping it on my husband and son. I’ve decided to step up to the mirror and own up to even the ugliest parts of me; the parts I try to turn away from or hide in my closet. It’s time for me to get them out, sort through the uglies, and decide how to conquer them; how to make them beauties.

Speaking of the uglies in my closet... here in my closet currently. :)

Speaking of the uglies in my closet… here in my closet currently. 🙂

I keep reminding myself of this promise:

“… for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.” (Ether 12:27)

I really do believe that. Or at least I’m trying to believe that. I want it badly. I want to be able to contain my temper, even during stressful times. I want to be kind to my husband, even when I’m low on sleep. I want to have more patience with my son, even if I’m sick and depleted.

Because when in life will I be able to say I’m not stressed about something? Probably sometimes. But, not very often.

In the end, I want my happiness and kindness to be in my court, not dependent on perfect situations. Because life, as beautiful and wonderful as it is, is rarely a perpetual, perfect situation.

How have you overcome personal traits that you didn’t want in your life? I would love your advice as I am on my own journey of overcoming!

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When it’s okay to rest

For the last week and a half I’ve been sick; sick with the scratchy sore throat, stuffy head, runny nose, and getting all my calories from cough drops, sort of sick.

It was frustrating, just as it is whenever sickness comes. But this time I was more disappointed, simply because I was finally getting some great habits in my life. I had worked out a schedule with friends to exercise a couple times a week and was pumped to get into a routine.

But when I got sick, I knew workouts were out for me until I was totally better. I’ve done sports enough growing up to know this about my body. I’ve worked out too many times when I was almost better, to know working out too soon only prolongs and worsens my sickness. So this time, even though I practically wanted to jump out of my skin and workout, I waited it out. I let myself rest. I slowed down.

Slowing down was what I needed.okay to restIsn’t it interesting how when life gets overwhelming, we often think the solution is to pick up speed, to power through, to sprint to the end, or to toughen up? We ignore our body or our hearts and believe if we just give it all we got it will work out. Nah, we don’t need to let something fall out of our life. Yes, we can continue doing everything, even if our condition is worsening. In fact, we almost wear it as a badge of honor that even with this activity, and this responsibility, and this life change, and this commitment, we still came through it while doing it all.

At least I know I’ve tried to wear that badge–the “Juggled it All” badge or the “Kept all the Plates Spinning” badge.

But, are we better off inside ourselves for pushing through the harsh conditions?

Sometimes we have no choice. Sometimes the time for decision has past and we have to power through. But more often than not, we could decide to say no; we could decide to slow down and re-coop enough to rejuvenate and calm our troubled waters.

“It is good advice to slow down a little, steady the course, and focus on the essentials when experiencing adverse conditions.”- Dieter Uchtdorf

Life really isn’t a race. There will be no badge for the one who powered through life until they reached the point of utter exhaustion. There will be no grand prize for the ones who juggled the most responsibilities. But, I’m pretty sure there will be happiness and peace for those who simplified, gave their life grace, and slowed down to rest.

How do you remember to re-evaluate your life when you feel overwhelmed? How do you give yourself grace and love even when you feel your life isn’t as exciting or fast-paced as others? I would love to hear your thoughts!

If you enjoyed this post, then I would so appreciate your vote! Thanks!

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Make it gleam

We put up our first Christmas tree this last week. I’m relishing in the joy of Christmas decorations and the pervading warmth that streams from the lights, the ornaments, the nativity, and the continuous Christmas tunes that waft throughout our house. Mmm, Christmas time just warms my heart.

Today I was gazing at our tree, as I often do during the day, and realized Christmas is what we make it. Life is what we make it.Make it gleam

Our Christmas tree is beautiful to me, because of the ornaments we hand-picked and thoughtfully placed. Our Christmas tree is dazzling because of the strands of beads we carefully strung around the tree. Our Christmas tree gleams because of the lights carefully arranged throughout the tree.

But without all our effort, our Christmas tree is just a tree. An ordinary tree that perhaps wouldn’t stand out in a crowd. It is what we did with the tree that makes it beautiful, dazzling, and gleaming with beauty.

My life may seem rather ordinary, and perhaps it is, but it’s what I’m doing each day that makes it gleam even more. The giggles I embrace, the prayers I say, the smiles I gift to others, the compliments I give my husband, the grace I extend to myself and others, all add a special gleam, a special dazzling effect to my life.

The more we invest and enjoy; the more willing we are to let our personality gleam and shine, the more our tree of life will gleam.

“Life is not always perfect, but it’s always what you make it. So make it count, make it memorable.”-Unknown

Life is what we make it, what we put into it. If life gives you a tree–decorate it–make it gleam.

How have you tried to make the most of your life? What is your favorite part of the Christmas season? Or how does Christmas revive you spiritually? As always, I would love to hear your thoughts!

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If you enjoyed this post, I would be honored if you would click the banner to vote for me!

Ladies, we’re equipped

Lately one single article has settled on my mind. I knew I found something good when I realized the post has stayed open in my internet tabs for over two weeks. The post was written by, NieNie Dialogues, and titled, Mothers are not wimps. The title alone drew me in and reminded me that as a woman, I have what it takes to go through life.

Sometimes the world lets us believe that our responsibilities in life are way above us; that we’re continually almost drowning in a sea of lack of sleep, hardships, tantrums and trials that are insurmountable. While I believe there are times and situations that test our limits, I also believe we are far more capable than we give ourselves credit for.

We were prepared for this life. We were given special gifts and the capacity to tackle life’s troubles. Innately, we have what it takes to overcome whatever is thrown at us. And when a trial comes that seems to wipe us out–we are still equipped, as we turn to our God who is on our side and who is infinitely stronger than the waves of trials crashing down.

7738_10151716072776763_141364709_n(1)We’re equipped.

Yes, innately and with God’s help, we’re equipped for the midnight feedings, devastating depression, and loneliness. We’re equipped for sleepless nights, broken dreams, and empty hearts. We’re equipped for the illness, for comparisons, and for unkind remarks. We’re equipped.

I firmly believe God did not hang us out to dry when he sent us to earth.

Just as I hope to carefully prepare my children for their first day of school; just as we triple check we have packed enough snacks, milk, and diapers for the babysitter; just as we shower our kids with hugs and kisses before they step out the door–so has our God, our Heavenly Father, prepared us for our time on earth.

“There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” (1 Corinthians 10:13)

We can be filled with confidence in ourselves and our ability to go through life with happiness, because we are equipped.

*Please check out Mothers are not wimps, as she has heavily inspired this post.

If you enjoyed this post, I would be honored if you click the banner and vote for me!

If you enjoyed this post, I would be honored if you click the banner and vote for me!