Monday, January 28, 2013

A Year of Kindness

I'm turning 30 this year. At first thought I found it kind of depressing.  I am completely, absolutely, madly in love with my life, but it is much MUCH different than the life I imagined. I spent years with my nose in textbook determined to solve the world's biological mysteries. I wanted to live a life of service, dedicating my time and energy to helping others. I wanted to be challenged to be better and to learn more each day.  Being a mom definetely fufills those needs; it has its challenges, constantly requires me to learn knew things, and allows me to spend every moment in humble service, but sometimes I feel like I become so focused on raising two little munchkins that I become blind to the needs of others. So, in attempt to reach outside of myself and to show gratitude for the beautiful life I live, I am doing 30 random acts of kindness this year to celebrate the transition that awaits me. Some acts are small, some will take time, some are for loved ones, even more are for strangers, but hopefully all of them will make me stronger, more compassionate, and help me travel gracefully into a new decade.

Friday, January 25, 2013

My Greatest Fear

Parenting is a glorious gift fraught with fear.   I have worried for my babies physcially, spiritually, and emotionally since before they were born, and I doubt that feeling of urgency will ever fade. I know that my actions write on the perfectly clean slates of my children's lives.  The things I do or don't do shape them and mold them into what I hope will one day be healthy, confident, and complete adults.  My greatest fear is that I will completely blow it... that I will scar them in some way, and this motivates me to learn more, try harder, and never ever surrender to my fear.
After coming home from the hospital last month, I layed down next to my sweet baby girl.  Although completely exhausted, I just needed to hear her sweet little voice, smell her silky hair, and hold her chunky little toddler arms in mine.  As we fell asleep, she whispered "mommy, I was so worried about you.  I cried by myself at night because my head was worrying about you and my heart hurted."  I reassured her that I would be okay, and that even when I wasn't with her, my love was always there for her to keep, but my heart burned with fear and frustration.  The fact that my physical failure had caused her stress and heartache and that I made my sweet hubby choose between staying with me and being there to comfort his little girl was just too much to bare.  I'm not sure what God intends for me to learn through this trial of health, but I pray every day that I will understand the purpose of this thing that is getting in the way of my greatest calling.  I'm learning to surrender, to have faith, and to trust, but I hope these lessons don't come at too great a cost for those that I love.  Hopefully time will bring strength, clarity, and a little less fear.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Downtown Chattanooga

We made a quick weekend trip to Chattanooga to see the World of Wheels car show, and then walked around and enjoyed this freakishly warm winter weather. We love visiting Chattanooga; it's not too big, not too small, close enough to be a weekend getaway, and there are tons of restaurants to try and places for the kids to explore. We ate at Sticky Fingers on Broad Street this time, and it was AMAZING. The food is a healthy version of Southern BBQ, and I even talked our extra hairy waiter into giving me a little of their special Chicken Shake spice that they put on just about everything there. I really just enjoyed spending time with the family. Days like these remind me how blessed I am.

Monday, January 14, 2013

The Not So Very Great Christmas

This Christmas was going to be perfect! We planned to go stay with Grandma and Grandpa, soak up the Florida sun, and enjoy our loved ones for the holidays.  We made it to Florida, but as usual, things didn't go as planned.  I've been sick, really sick.  It's not in my character to be still, so I've tried to keep things moving along as much as I can despite feeling horrible all of the time.  I've been to countless doctors, but haven't gotten a definitive diagnosis; it's been terribly frustrating, but I'm sure answers will come.
I didn't get to spend Christmas with the kids.  I ended up in the hospital again, but we opened some presents at Uncle Kevin's before our road trip and I got these few pictures.  Christmas day was rough, but I'm so blessed to have family to care for my babies, a hubby who holds me and helps me smile through my tears, and a spirit of determination. Hopefully this next year will bring answers, peace, and a deeper understanding of the love that surrounds me.