Another low key evening for me spent watching the Olympics with my boys and waiting for my hubby to get home from work.
After visiting the wolds of Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest I found myself checking up on my blog.
I found a link I had never noticed that breaks down views by country, and found a list of over 52 countries all around the world where people have read the words I have written within the last six months.
I felt a little choked up.
I had never realized just how far and wide my posts have touched.
And maybe every person who read them wasn’t a fan,
But maybe, just maybe, some of them were touched.
Maybe something I said made a difference in someones day,
Was a bit of encouragement,
Or made them feel a little less alone in the world.
Thats all I have ever wanted,
All I have ever hoped for in my writing,
That because I pour my heart and soul out to the world,
To someone, somewhere it will make a difference.
I cannot begin to tell you how humbling it is to know that a part of that dream has come true for me,
That all over the world I have been a part of people’s days,
Even if only for the couple of minutes it takes to read one of my posts.
God is good.
It’s that simple,
I consider writing a gift and a huge blessing,
The ability to verbalize what I think or feel is amazing.
Maybe I am not as articulate as some,
I certainly don’t see myself as anything amazing,
But I do know that not everyone can say whats on their heart,
And I thank God for giving me the words.
Every post may not always be pleasant,
But it is truth as I see or feel it,
And I think thats all anyone could ask for.
There are plenty of other great writers who have reached far more people than I have,
But for me,
A girl born and raised in a small town in Indiana,
52 countries around the world is a pretty big deal.
I am truly blown away.
I guess what I really want to say is thank you,
All of you,
Anyone who has ever taken the time to read one of my posts,
Or to share it with others,
You have touched me by supporting me,
And your views and comments and love and encouragement fuel my dream more than you will ever know.
I am so humbled by the love that I have felt from so many of you,
I cannot even begin to express just how much each of you mean to me.
Dream big and keep on dreaming.
You never really know just how much is within your reach,
And all that God will bring in your path.
52 August 11, 2012
Another low key evening for me spent watching the Olympics with my boys and waiting for my hubby to get home from work.
Waiting Game August 8, 2012
Evenings are my favorite time of day,
And least favorite all at the same time.
My three little munchkins sleep peacefully in their beds,
Gently snoring like little bear cubs.
And although the peace of a quiet home is a moment to savor,
I am restless and bored waiting for my husband to come home.
Tonight feels a little bitter sweet though,
I will be 39 weeks pregnant in a little over 24 hours,
And our boy could come any day;
And when that comes I am wondering how long it will be before I have one of these nights again.
Even as I write this,
I can run my hand up and down my stomach and feel my boys back,
Just beneath my stomach, wedged in tightly is his little bottom,
Which he seems to love to jab into me and cause an intensely uncomfortable feeling.
My back is throbbing,
Simply from living day to day it seem.
But I’m so in love with this little boy,
And all the discomfort will be well worth it.
Its just a waiting game at this point,
And I laugh a little as my organs seem to find new hidden crevices to be jammed into as our boy continues to grow.
He seems so big,
I honestly almost wonder how he will get out!
(And no, not a serious question, three kids already so I do know where babies come from lol).
Yes, I can play the waiting game as long as I need to,
But I hope its over soon.
I’m ready to meet this little guy,
And begin the next chapter of our lives as a family…
Breathe July 24, 2012
Sunday evening I seriously thought I was going into labor,
Which really freaked me out since I’m not due for another three weeks.
I have done my best to be prepared for Peanut’s arrival,
But those of you with kids know that you are never truly 100% prepared.
Labor for me has always come when I have been too busy to do dishes,
The evening I am just so worn out I can barely keep my eyes open,
After laundry has been neglected for a few days;
You know, the inconvenient times that just scream irony.
But still all three of my boys have come no more than a couple of days before their due date,
So when my contractions were coming 6-8 minutes apart for roughly 7 hours I worried.
But all I could think about was that if labor stopped I was going to have to bear a day with all my kids plus three extras the next day.
So around midnight I looked at my husband and with a calm smile I announced “I’m going to lay down and take a nap because I either have a long day tomorrow or a long work out later tonight. I will wake you up if they don’t stop.”
The poor man then hopped in his car and ran to Wal-Mart to pick up some last minute items for the hospital bag, then anxiously stayed up until 2:30 waiting to see if I was going to wake up and head to the hospital.
Luckily for all of us though, the contractions stopped once I fell asleep.
Maybe a practice run was good preparation,
If nothing else it freaked me out enough to realize all the things that I still need to get done,
And accept that if they don’t get done baby boy will still get here,
And everything will be just fine.
SInce Sunday I have had random contractions throughout the day, but nothing consistent thats really setting off alarm bells.
I have found that if I am on my feet for more than an hour, they start again.
This is a dilemma.
When you are caring for small children, sitting down and relaxing isn’t part of your daily routine.
There is laundry to fold and dishes to wash and about a million other things that need to get done at any given moment.
“Take it easy.” Everyone keeps telling me this.
I wish it were as simple to implement as it is to say.
And sure, my husband has been great, helping with meals and cleaning the kitchen every night to help me stay off my feet, but he works an awful lot and so its not practical to rely on him all the time.
It seems like so many.
Mel will be starting school again right around when Peanut is born, and technically I’m not even supposed to lift enough weight to pick Devin up for several weeks after giving birth.
That will be a trick.
“Sorry sixteen month old son of mine, mommy cant pick you up for bed so please be a dear and sprout wings and fly into your crib for nap time.”
And even though all the “what if’s” can really stress me out,
I have this underlying sense of calm somewhere deep down.
Everything will work out.
Everything will be fine.
So all I can do from now until whatever day this little one decides to arrive is be as ready as I can,
And maybe try to listen to everyone’s advice and not over do it.
Try is the key word there.
Our bodies tell us things when we listen,
And maybe all these aches and pains and practice contractions are sending me some signals.
Now all I have to do is get myself psyched up enough to go through labor again.
That one is still a work in progress…*ouch*
Everything in God’s perfect timing right?
Baby will be here when he is ready,
And I don’t get to control it or predict that.
Beautiful Life July 22, 2012
Life is so beautiful…
Love is so precious…
Embrace every moment…
Treasure the gifts you have been given…
Cherish every smile…
Appreciate the present…
Hope for the future…
Embrace the role you have been given…
Find the beauty in everything…
Be eternally grateful for your blessings…
And live every moment like there is no tomorrow…
Photos By Katrina Lonadier: 07-15-2012 Me @ 35 weeks and 4 days pregnant with baby #4
Normal Friday July 20, 2012
My alarm went off this morning at its usual time.
My fifteen month old son lay sideways next to me, legs resting on my chest.
Devin’s footed dinosaur pajamas make him look smaller and bigger than he is at the same time, and his gentle snoring makes me want nothing more than to roll over and snuggle him for the remainder of the day.
But reality calls and I slowly (and awkwardly) manage to sit up and get out of bed, despite my large protruding belly making balance a foreign word.
As I enter the living room my five year olds bright smiling face greets me.
He is curled up on the couch watching power rangers, as he does most mornings, without a care in the world.
Jordan is still sound asleep in his bed, resembling a chubby little bear cub as he ignores the noises of the morning in our house and peacefully dreams four year old kind of dreams.
Yup, it seems to be a pretty normal Friday.
Until I log onto facebook and see posts about a tragic shooting in Colorado last night.
Some crazy man walks into a movie theater with tear gas and three guns, kills twelve people and injures fifty others.
How is this possible?
Sure, Colorado is over a thousand miles away from my small midwestern town, but the ache I feel for those affected by this is just as intense as if it had happened here.
No one should die that way.
Sure, death happens all over the world, every single day, but the deaths most frustrating to me are the deliberate and the senseless.
Those people died for no reason other than a 24 year olds sick and twisted fantasy.
I’m 36 weeks pregnant today.
Just a few more weeks and we will meet our youngest son.
My three boys sit at my feet on our living room rug, innocently playing with their toys, wrestling, and enjoying each other like little boys do.
There is such a short window in our lives, when we don’t know how sad and frightening the world really is.
My boys have no idea that around the world people are broken and hurt and dying.
They don’t know there are sicknesses without treatments and that some children woke up with empty, aching bellies and have no food to fill them.
I am reminded of two things today.
If all you focus on is the negative, the negative is all you will see.
While I am deeply saddened by this tragedy, I have to focus on my children, and my life and my future, for them and for me.
Life is short, and no one is promised tomorrow.
All you can do is enjoy every moment as it comes;
The song of my children’s laughter,
The warmth of their hugs,
And the joy that they bring me.
If I didn’t believe that in the end good triumphs over evil,
I could not bring children into this world.
But here I am,
About to give birth all over again,
And so I am trusting that there is a plan,
And that there is a purpose for everything and everyone.
Photo of me @ 35 weeks, by Katrina Lonadier.
True Love June 28, 2012
Love is patient,
Love is kind.
It does not envy,
It does not boast,
It is not proud,
It is not rude,
It is not deceitful.
Love keeps no record of wrongs.
Love does not delight in evil,
But rejoices with the truth.
Love always trusts.
Love always hopes.
Love always perseveres.
Love Never Fails.
~1 Corinthians 13:4-8
This verse has been on my heart a great deal over the last few days.
It has always been one of my favorites,
For its eloquence and beauty.
But it also spells out so clearly what the definition of what true love really is,
And what I as a wife and mother and woman should strive for in the relationships God has blessed me with.
Every time I read it,
It sheds a little light on the areas I am lacking,
But also encourages me that this kind of love is attainable.
I believe in this kind of love,
With everything in me,
I believe that this is something ithat I can experience.
Broken down in its simplest terms,
This is what true love and this verse means:
Love is Patient:
I have a difficult time with patience some days.
My three small children and my husband know this well.
I get overwhelmed and frustrated,
And sometimes allow my emotions to get the best of me.
But love, real love, is patient.
It keeps its cool when you’re boiling on the inside.
It bites it tongue when you want to lash out.
It teaches the same thing again and again,
Just as gently as the first time.
Because even when I absolutely don’t feel like it,
Love, in its purest form, is never short tempered.
It is gentle and calm and gives chance after chance,
No matter how frustrating that can sometimes be.
Love is Kind:
There are plenty of times I want to be sarcastic,
Or say exactly what I am thinking just because it popped into my head.
But real love doesn’t do that.
I don’t think that Paul meant that love never speaks a word that is unflattering,
But even when telling someone an ugly truth that needs to be said,
Doing so with kindness and humility is what love is all about.
Making sure that even criticism is constructive, with a purpose and with only that persons best interest in mind.
Love does not ever use someone as an emotional punching bag,
Allowing them to bear the brunt of frustrations and irritations.
Love has goodness at its root always.
It Does Not Envy:
This one I had a hard time understanding at first.
What does that have to do with love?
But that might be the point,
Envy has no place in a loving relationship.
For me, it means being happy in someone else’s success instead of wishing it for yourself.
It means not being jealous and petty,
Being jealous is nothing but poison to a relationship,
And remembering it has no place in your mind or heart saves a great deal of grief.
It Does Not Boast:
When you love someone,
The last thing you want is to make them feel inadequate.
Being prideful and boasting about yourself or your accomplishments has only one purpose,
To make others feel worse while you feel better.
Loving someone is making them feel good,
And making them feel happy with you when you accomplish something,
Not that you being great makes them less great.
Love is Not Proud:
Pride comes in several forms.
It can be similar to boasting (above),
Or it can be that stubborn bone of contention that makes a silly argument last for weeks.
Its refusing to admit that you are wrong,
Or refusing to apologize for causing someone you love pain.
Because sometimes, even if you were right,
Hurting someone you love is never right.
Pride has no place in love.
When you love someone,
You put their needs first.
Their happiness and well being is at the forefront of your mind and heart,
And pride cares only about itself.
Love is Not Rude:
Being rude to anyone is not okay,
Even if they initiate it,
Even if the last thing they deserve is grace.
But when you love someone,
Being rude is even worse.
Guard your mouth always,
So that the words you say do not leave scars on the heart of those you love.
Love is Not Deceitful:
When you love someone you are honest with them,
Even brutally so sometimes.
You cannot experience love the way it was intended if you lie,
If you keeps secrets,
Or skeletons hidden in the shadows.
The way that you live should be with the ones you love most in mind always,
So that there is never a need to hide things.
Deceit and lies always come out in the end,
And trying to prevent that just causes more hurt and pain than dealing with it outright ever would have.
Love Keeps No Record of Wrongs:
Holding grudges and refusing to let them go,
Poisons a person from the inside out.
It causes a healthy relationship to rot and die,
Leaving nothing but pain and resentment.
Keeping track of the bad things brings misery,
And shifts all your focus from the good;
And love is certainly not miserable or angry.
Love Does Not Delight In Evil:
Love is not evil,
And enjoying bad things,
Especially bad things happening to others is not love.
But Rejoices With The Truth:
Truth is good,
Even when it hurts,
We rejoice over the big things,
And the small things.
We rejoice with accomplishments,
And with goals,
And with anything that makes the person we love happy.
When you love someone,
Their happiness is shared with you.
Love Always Trusts:
Trust is hard for me,
And a lot of others I know.
It’s not that I don’t want to trust people,
It’s that pain and heartache leaves scars behind,
And sometimes one of the hardest things you do is to see past them.
But the thing is, loving someone requires you let go of your past.
Keeping no record of wrongs,
You move on from the things that hurt you,
And you force yourself to give the person you love the benefit of the doubt.
Even when they have hurt you before,
Love requires you to trust that person to do all they can not to cause that same pain again.
Love Always Hopes:
Without hope, what is the point?
No matter what trials are faced today,
We must always cling to the promise that tomorrow holds something better.
We hope for change in the things that hurt us,
Or bring us stress or grief.
We hope that our prayers will be answered,
And that change will come.
We hope that our dreams will come true.
Hope keeps us going,
And gives us the drive and fire to continue on,
Even when it seems there is no reason to.
Love Always Perseveres:
Determination has to be behind every relationship for it to last.
If you cannot persevere through the hard times,
You will never make it to see the good times.
Trials and tribulations are a part of life,
And there will be moments you really don’t like each other;
Arguments that get nasty,
And mistakes will be made you can never take back.
There will be heartache and heartbreak,
And there will be times you will let each other down.
If you keep going on,
With the mindset that no matter what happens,
You are in this forever,
Then you will experience the joy and delight of what true love really is,
And that bliss makes it all worth it.
Love Never Fails:
There is no pain too great,
No mistake too big,
No storm strong enough,
That true love cannot overcome.
It sounds so cliche,
But if you love someone,
Then no matter what happens you will make it through,
Simply because you refuse to surrender.
You must remember that love is many things,
But love is never uncertain,
And as long as you refuse to doubt,
You will succeed.
Real love can hurt,
Sometimes it may have scars from the battles it has fought,
But it is a bond that can never be broken,
Unless you allow it to be.
Love is treating others the way you want to be treated.
Love is giving of yourself without asking anything in return.
Love is working every single day to maintain what you have built,
Never allowing someone else to come in and damage it.
Love is forgiving before ever being asked,
Again and again and again.
Love is sacred,
The most valuable of all achievements.
Love is a journey of faith and trust.
Love is a promise;
Love is a vow,
Never to be broken.
If you cling to the promise of tomorrow,
And you remember all the things above,
Determining what this popular passage means to you,
You will discover something amazing.
The definition of love is right here.
Pure and simple.
And if you embrace is,
And strive to posses it,
Happiness and peace is sure to find you.
Screw It June 8, 2012
I have been told that I am too insecure.
That it’s unattractive and annoying.
I say, screw it.
I say what I feel and I write whats on my heart.
Maybe sometimes its messy,
Or imperfect or whatever,
But its real;
Its who I am,
And if you were all honest with yourself,
You have insecurities too.
The question is not whether or not we all have them,
It’s how honest we are when it comes to dealing with them.
I deal with mine by addressing them,
I talk about them,
Internalizing makes me slightly insane,
And I would rather be a little too honest than crazy.
I have flaws,
But I don’t flaunt them,
I just stopped hiding from them a long time ago.
I write about the truth in my life,
And its not to get attention.
I write the way that I do because putting thoughts to paper makes them a little more manageable in my mind and heart.
I write the way I do because maybe, just maybe, someone else feels the way I do sometimes;
And maybe knowing I feel this way will make them feel a little less alone.
Like it or don’t like it’s okay with me.
I am insecure,
I know that about myself.
I don’t know if or when that will change,
But I know the last thing I want to be is fake.
When I feel something I’m going to write about it,
And if it bothers you then, hey, no one forced you to read.
Being genuine is the only thing that makes a blog worth reading,
What the heck is the point in reading a bunch of fake BS that barely skims the surface of that persons reality?
Love me or hate me,
This is who I am.
So take me with my flaws or just keep scrolling on your browser.