Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mother's Day

gorgeous pictures of me with my kids by Jessica Haderlie

These four.  I love them deeply.  Although there are a million things I've learned since having children, I also realize that a mother is something I have always been.  In college my friends would tease me about my motherly ways.  I was always keeping things real (aka responsible).  Having children was just a natural extension of my true desire- to care for others.

I've had a lot of thoughts lately about things I want to pursue outside of motherhood.  My deepest desires are all intertwined in pursuits to help others.  I want to help people recognize their worth, improve, and become the best versions of themselves.

Suddenly I realized that I don't need to wish for other avenues to do this- I am already doing it in the very best way I ever will- as a mother.  I am grateful that my greatest desires are being fulfilled in my role as a mother.  It's always been who I am.  It always will be.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013


Some years on May day I love thinking about traditions of sharing flowers with friends and celebrating Spring.  Other years, it feels like the cry of distress for falling planes or sinking ships.  This year was more akin to the latter, especially when we woke up to snow this morning (I kept telling myself I'd rather have it May 1 than June 1 to try to console myself).

The past few weeks have been a blur. Two weeks ago Sam had a little stomach flu.  And then Addie.  And then Charlie was sick but never threw up.  And then I got it.  And the husband never did, but the next day he ended up in the hospital for a few days thanks to his Crohn's.  We'd been on the fence for about 10 days at that point as to whether he'd be able to stave off dehydration and turn the corner or whether he'd end up in the hospital.  Crohn's won.  One night his dad was there visiting with me while he was falling asleep.  He turned to me and talked about what a great example the husband is of being cheerful through his trials, and truly, he is.  He learns the name of every nurse, aid, and janitor who comes into his room and jokes and laughs.  He is good-natured and kind, even when he doesn't feel well.  He came home a little too soon and we've almost returned to the hospital several times, but he's doing his best to recover and taking it easy at home this week, going stir-crazy in the process.

He came home last Thursday and Nellie started feeling lousy that night.  Finally on Monday a trip to the doctor confirmed double ear infections- her very first.  In other Nellie news, she started crawling Sunday, just days before she hit the 11 month mark.  She has taken to it with gusto and is trying to explore all over the house.  As glad as I am that she finally hit that milestone, I am not always good at keeping every.little.crumb off the floor, so I'm trying to catch up on baby proofing and on housework in general after how the last few weeks have been.  There is a long list of things waiting for me, but housework is so patient, it always waits.

Sometimes I get a little flustered by people around me who somehow have gotten the mistaken idea that my life is perfect.  It's weeks like these that make me want to call them up and give them a laundry list of the things that aren't quite so perfect so maybe they'll have a little perspective.  Obviously that's not really appropriate, but I have those conversations in my head sometimes when I'm feeling particularly ornery.

Really, I know that I have it pretty darn good.  Everyone has their good days and bad, and we have had a few bad lately.  But even the bad days are filled with plenty of good when I stop to add it all up.  My sister-in-law made a wise observation that maybe those lives that seem so perfect seem that way because we're enduring our trials well instead of moping and complaining all over the place.  I think she may be on to something.

Happy May Day/mayday.  I've had a few things on my mind lately I hope to write about soon.