Power in Motherhood: The Way She Sees Things

Selected to be a part of Tribe magazine’s short story compilation on The Power in Motherhood, I wanted to show my youngest daughter’s strength and tenacity through a simple metaphor. I used a flower in all its innocent beauty to highlight the raw delicacy and grace of my little firecracker. Come on over to Tribe Magazine and check it out! I am among 12 amazing writers who also talk about motherhood in their very own unique and thoughtful ways.

(Photo credit: Martin Vorel )

“She is here and now. This moment is her strength because she is planted right in the deep, dark soil of it.”

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Sit and Stare: A Grace Story

Hi friends! Today, Jamie Sumner from The Mom Gene  has contributed the first guest Grace Story on Grace for the Wasted Space! I’m so excited to have a piece of her story here because she writes about something that we can all relate to: Perspective. She tells of hope found in the middle of a hard season that may not ever change this side of heaven. However, the thing she focuses on is prayer despite the circumstances that she wishes were a little bit different. And that is where the truth is not only found but where it resonates with each of our hearts. The waiting and hoping doesn’t necessarily change things, but the praying, well, it always does. Even if the only thing that it changes is the person praying. Welcome Jamie by leaving her an encouraging comment and then go check her out at her beautiful blog: The Mom Gene.


Sit and Stare


13 All these people were still living by faith when they died. They did not receive the things promised; they only saw them and welcomed them from a distance. And they admitted they were aliens and strangers on earth. 14 People who say such things show that they are looking for a country of their own. 15 If they had been thinking of the country they had left, they would have had the opportunity to return. 16 Instead, they were longing for a better country—a heavenly one.

Abel, Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Sarah, Isaac, Jacob. Paul lists them all and their faithful deeds like an exemplary contact list before he gets to this aside. Whenever I read this passage, I feel it in my chest, that balloon expansion as each one performs the necessary act of faith and then receives the reward. Abel offers the best sacrifice. Noah builds the boat and sees the rainbow. Sarah waits decades and has a baby. But Cain murders Abel and Noah must start from scratch on the new boggy earth and Sarah dies before she sees substantial proof of the patriarchal branch leading to the future Israelite nation. They listen to God and receive a blessing, but it is the smaller blessing. A slice of the pie.

I could read up to verse thirteen and stop there. Put a period to the happy ending. There’s so much good there. But if I’m begrudgingly honest, the rest is the best. It’s the whole pie. It’s the land we were built for where these tiny stories fit together to make a better scene. I prayed over my infertility and was blessed with Charlie and Jonas and Cora, but we also got cerebral palsy and a wheelchair and twins who must push behind rather than run beside their big brother. Big blessings with bigger wishes yet unmet.

The alien heart in me aches for the place where the three will run together. I want to see it with my own eyes. I want to hug them all while they stand on their own, heights not marked by braces or standers or stools. But I will try to be satisfied today knowing we will.

The thing that keeps me praying in this world is that there is another one. If this was all there is I think I might not be able to see my way past all the unfulfilled desires and the unfairness.

I might only see the wheelchair and not the boy. I might only feel the fear for my children’s future in what looks like a scarier and darker world than the fluffy one from which I hatched. But that’s not the full picture. It’s like the impressionists with their dots. You stand with your nose too close and it looks a jumbled mess. You take a few steps back and it’s a lady, a boat, a lake, a masterpiece.

I’m really trying to let these verses elicit hope rather than frustration. It does not always work. But it’s never going to work if I don’t practice. You don’t speed-walk through the museum. You sit and stare and let all that wide thinking and talent settle over you. You read every signpost steering you on to the next. You assess each piece from every angle, because each approach is different. And then you go back and visit again on another day in another mood and see even more and leave hoping that some of it rubbed off on you.

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Website: http://mom-gene.com
Facebook: The Mom Gene
Instagram: themomgene

Three Ways Frozen’s Elsa Taught My Daughter to be a Strong Woman

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Hi followers and friends. It’s December 1! Can you even believe it? I am still in shock over how fast this year has passed. Anyways…I have a fun post up on Red Tricycle about Disney princesses and how they influence our kids personalities. Would love some views, comments, and shares! This was a neat article to write and I really got to explore a more childlike side of myself while writing about my preschooler’s take on femininity based on Elsa’s character in Frozen. Hop on over and check it out. I promise that you’ll be super entertained!

As always, thanks for your faithfulness to read my words. I don’t take your loyalty for granted. I appreciate you!

Here’s a bit from the article:

“As you very well know, strong women are in dire need these days. The Elsas of the world need to rise up to their full potential and fearlessly behold their strength in the face of ice-cold circumstances. Take this challenge from my spunky three-nager and repeat these words out loud until you believe it: “I know I can!” Then sing your way into victory! (You know you want to.)”

What’s your fave Disney princess? Do you see some of her characteristics in yourself? Leave me a comment (after you have read the piece) and let me know for some good ol’ fashioned fun. 🙂 Happy Thursday!

(Read more…)

Photo Credit: Paul Green 
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Shared on Mom Life Monday’s Blog Link-up 

Moms, It’s Okay to Embrace Your Mushy Side

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Hi friends! I have a post up on my fave site, Her View From Home, for all my mamas out there. I have discovered a new side to myself since having children- sappy! (And I’m loving it, though it does make things awkward at times.) Come on over to HVFH and check out my newest piece if you’re constantly feeling that tug to tear up over things your kids do. I promise you’ll find some solidarity with other moms in my words.

 

“These opportunities come our way whether we like it or not. We have to decide if we’re going to let them steer us further into relationship with our child, even if that means shedding a few tears, or if we’re going to let them push us out of connection with them. Seeing life through our children’s eyes will evoke emotions from the hardest of hearts. Our children seeing life through our eyes will help them see that we, their parents, are simply human. Just. Like. Them.”

Read more… 

 

I’ve also linked up with Mom Life Mondays. 

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Photo Credit : Jon Flobrant 

Pregnant at 35: The Good, the Bad,& the Wet Pants (mine- not the kids)

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So, I guess this is my official social media announcement: We are expecting baby number 5! Are we excited? Yes! Are we a bit overwhelmed at the thought of another baby in our already bustling household? Yes. But we are blessed and that is that. 🙂 In honor of our news, I wrote a piece for Her View From Home about how my body is reacting to baby this time around- at 35. Here’s a snippet:

“When we first found out that I am pregnant, some crazy emotions crept in. The big one that took over my thoughts and caused me some anxiety was my age. I am 35 years old. I know, I know…I’m not old. BUT I’m not young either. My first three children were born in my twenties and when number four came along I was 32. Let me tell you something- the whole experience was different. Like, more aches and pains, more weird hormones, more emotional breakdowns, more binge-eating. Seriously, getting pregnant over 30 is not for the faint of heart.”

If you want a little mid-week chuckle then continue reading about my journey so far HERE.  I promise, you won’t get bored. Thanks! Happy Wednesday!

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My Addiction to Fear

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I’m learning that I can’t be the mom who saves my kids. From a lot of things. 

I have operated out of fear, in the name of protection, for too long. And it has taken from me. My sanity, my ability to trust, my peace.

More importantly, my fear has taken from my kids. Their love of new things, their desire for adventure, their confidence in their decisions. Yeah, I did that. (Or rather, I allowed my fear to do that!)

I couldn’t see it before because I was happily living in a padded room of my own making. Quite like the rooms you see on t.v. in the haunted mental institutions. This was my brain on fear. I was safe but isolated, left to deal with my tormenting thoughts all on my own.

What sobered me up was my gut-wrenching decision to put my kids in public school this year after only homeschooling them for the past 6 years. Just making the choice to do it felt like death hovering over me as I shook from fear withdrawals.

I felt sick at the thought of letting them go when all I (and they) had ever known was our home, our rules, our ways. But then, after the waves of nausea started to decrease, I felt something new and, honestly, it scared me.

Freedom.

Not in the sense that freedom is only delegated to the school-going families. No, freedom in the sense that I could actually walk away from something that was no longer working for our family. It was keeping me bound in despair as I wrestled every day with watching my kids cling more and more to me and less to their own amazing personalities.

You know when you just get to that point when enough is enough? You are afraid of the new thing staring you in the face but you know that the old thing has just been done way too long? That’s where I was when my husband came to me and introduced the idea of putting them in school. I had a choice to make, albeit painful.

I decided that I was not going to be a fear-addict any longer.

So, we did it. And it’s been great! It’s also been hard some days. But better all around. They are standing on their own two feet and learning to take responsibility for their choices without me there to prompt them. They are embarking on new friendships and engaging in activities that they would have not had the chance to do otherwise. Most importantly, my fear of them not needing me anymore was proven totally unfathomable. They get to take care of themselves when not at home but the evenings are my time with them. Time for snuggles and homework help and bedtime prayers.

They say fear is an illusion. I say fear is also a drug. It incapacitates you and leaves you wanting more and more of it until it’s all you can think about. Thank God I have a husband who listens to God’s voice and calls me higher when I’m living beneath the level of freedom God has for me.

Thank God, the taste of freedom is way more satisfying then the taste of fear.

You Can Do This, Mama.

Hi folks! It’s been a few days since I have posted anything because my hubs and I went out of town to NYC for a romantic getaway. ❤ We had a blast- ok, you talked me into it. Here’s a pic of us enjoying a rooftop club in Manhattan:

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Anyways…I wanted to hop on here and share my newest piece on Her View From Home! It’s a shout out to all you mama’s out there who feel tired, neglected, ignored, or just plain scared. (Don’t we all feel these things in a variety of ways at different times on our mommyhood journey?)

Here’s a snippet:

You can use your unique voice to impart lasting words of wisdom to your little ones. You can laugh out loud in the middle of folding laundry and cry tears of gratitude as you stumble over piles of Legos. You can see your reflection as a timeless reminder that you tirelessly fought to be your own kind of beautiful, the kind that only you can be. You can boldly love those babes with fierce abandon; with a certainty that calms every fear inside of their hearts.

I hope you scoot over to Her View From Home and give it a glance. Pass it along to any mama friends that you think might need some encouragement to keep on being amazing! Noone can do your job- God picked you to love those kiddo’s in your home. Pat yourself on the back and put one foot in front of the other on the hard days. It will be SO worth it!

Read more HERE!

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The Mom She Needs

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Happy Tuesday, friends! I am over on Her View From Home again today with a piece about postpartum depression. I share my story of dealing with it for a little while after my first daughter’s birth. I hope you will take a peek into my life for a minute and read about my experience. Many moms struggle with this and I want to be a voice of freedom for them to also share their very personal experiences. Life (and all of it’s moments) is meant to be shared, right? Thank you for checking it out HERE.

Here’s a sneak peek:

She came home. Only to scream ugly comments to me that poke at the very identity of who I am. She said she wished I was never her mother. Doesn’t she know? I ache every single day because I AM her mother. The truth that she is a gift that I barely received is something I carry with me everywhere I go. It is a part of who I am.

 

To read more, click here! For more Her View From Home posts, click on the HVFH category in the drop down menu. I generally write about motherhood, faith, and grief along with other amazing mommy writers. Thanks!

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Hey Mom!

Our aim is simple-look to heaven for help on earth.

Today, I was invited to guest post over at one of my fave places, FLOURISH! I wrote a short Mother’s Day piece for all you weary mamas out there. I would be honored if you checked it out. I took the well known verse of Proverbs 31:28 and broke it down a bit. Here’s a snippet:

“To rise up means to live boldly for Christ by standing our ground when everything around us is trying to knock us down. Picture an eagle soaring above the storms. She is not affected by the lightning and thunder around her but rather, she is bravely allowing the severe weather to propel her further into her destiny.”

Thanks for your support! Here’s the link one last time: FLOURISH

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