Saturday, May 16, 2015

I work out {sort of}

If people saw my workout "routine" they would probably die laughing.

For one thing the music is generally turned to a KidsBop station in hopes that my kids would rather dance than interrupt my push ups...

And sometimes situps have a tandem thing going on.

Then it's on to squats.  On second thought, never mind.

And then I rush through some lunges while the boy is distracted with some pretzels.

I mean, really.  It might be time to invest in a gym membership.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Motherhood

On this day each year I can't help but reflect on this amazing journey called Motherhood.  It's hard to believe that just seven short years ago this sweet baby girl made me a mother.  I'll never forget the feelings flowing through me as I held her for the first time: wonder, joy, excitement... and fear.  She didn't exactly come with a manual and as a twenty-year-old first-time mother I knew I had a lot to learn.

Then along came baby #2.  Just when I thought I had gotten the hang of this motherhood thing, I had to re-learn, re-adjust, and re-adapt.  But there it was again -- the unmistakable feeling of joy.

Three years later, a third blessing entered our lives.  We got off to a rough start but the love and joy in my heart only multiplied.

Motherhood is hard and exhausting and challenging, but it is worth every sacrifice.  And believe me, there are sacrifices: long showers, quiet mealtimes, leisurely trips to the store.  Do these things even exist??

They do, but they don't matter.

Today my oldest daughter looked at me with admiration in her eyes and she said, "I love that you're my mom.  And I'm glad that I'm your child."

Now that matters.  

Our children don't care if we drive to preschool in a nightgown, or make pancakes for dinner, or let the baby run around the backyard in just a diaper.  They really don't.

What matters to them is that they feel loved.  And as a mother, love is what I do.  Every single thing that I do for my children is motivated by love -- pancake dinners and all!

"The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world."
- William Ross Wallace

Three little children call me Mother and the privilege is all mine.
 

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

The Choice

For as long as I can remember {and even before that} I have struggled with anxiety.

When I was two, I got sick while shopping at the mall with my mom.  She never could take me back because from then on I always got sick there.

Growing up I had a love/hate relationship with sleepovers.  As much as I loved spending countless hours with my friends, the anxiety I felt during the days or weeks leading up to the event would undoubtedly catch up with me during the night I was away.

In high school I participated in track and field.  I loved being part of a team, especially for relays, but there was one race in particular that scared me to death.  I hated the 400 meter with a passion but, unfortunately, I was good at it so I had to run it a lot.  I became physically ill before and after every. single. race.  For 4 years.


I wish I could explain what it is about life that is so terrifying to me.  Logically, it makes no sense.

Be that as it may, the cold sweats, panic attacks, and knots in my stomach are very real.  And each morning I have to make a choice: will I hide in my house or go out in the world?
 

Usually the answer is simple: GO.  Get out.  Face your fears.  

And it works!  Every night when I fall into bed I'm reassured in knowing that I did what I had to do.

But lately the real trick has been learning to face my fears at home.  That may seem a little ironic, being scared in my "happy place."  But do you know what my happy place looks like sometimes?
 

Do you remember those nightly reassuring thoughts I was talking about?  They are always quickly followed up by this one: I have to do this all again tomorrow!!!

And then there's the extra stuff.  The kids need new clothes now that the warm weather is here to stay.  My brother is getting married next month and I still haven't gotten him a gift.  Oh, and how about that family vacation that seemed like such a great idea a few months ago but is now right around the corner?!  Apparently Kylie and I are both a little nervous about that.

It's always something, I tell you. 

But my sweet little Summer recently taught me a valuable lesson about perspective.  One morning we went for a walk and passed a large field of dandelions.  She picked up a white dandelion puff and blew all of the seeds away, like little girls do.  When I asked what she wished for, she said, "I wished-ed that nobody would pick the yellow ones because those are people's wishes that are coming true."

How interesting that as adults we see a field of weeds but to a child it is a field of wishes.

So I'm trying a little harder to notice the "wishes" in my life that have already come true.  

Sure, my little boy is a handful, but he sure knows how to make me smile.

I got to attend a darling little tea party at Summer's preschool yesterday.  Her face lit up as soon as she saw me, and I'll remember that forever.

When Kylie first started playing softball, I was terrified for her because she's small and inexperienced.  I never could have guessed that just two short weeks later she would step up to the plate and hit a teammate home-- with two outs and the bases loaded.  I'm one proud mama when my kids face their own fears and do hard things.
video

Life can be scary and hard and uncertain... but it's also pretty darn great.