not exactly a dance recital . . . but even better!

eight years ago, sitting in a waiting room at the doctor’s office, tom and i had just been told the news that our first child was going to be a little girl.  this exchange happened . . .

tom:  well, you know what this means, right?

me:  what is that?

tom:  dance recitals.

i was overjoyed at this thought as i remembered back at how excited i was as a little girl to perform at my own dance recitals for my family.  in my mind i had visions of pigtails and tea parties . . . of pierced ears and twirly dresses.  i had even picked out the most delicate name for her . . . lily.

when lily was born there was an instant falling in love that was so deep that i literally felt as if my heart was going to burst into a million pieces.  she was an unplanned c-section and though i didn’t have the pleasure? of pushing her out, it was a wonderful experience in that operating room and was an absolute joyous occasion.  i will never forget the look on tom’s face as we heard her cry for the first time and big tears filled both of our eyes.  she had finally arrived.  the little girl that we had been planning and praying for.

fast forward eight years . . .

this past saturday, i was sitting at a skateboard park with my family as we watched lily warming up for her first skate competition.  i looked on as she waited patiently for her turn on each ramp and made sure to give her my attention every time she yelled for me to watch.  she was by far the youngest person at the park.  she was also the only girl.  i couldn’t have been more proud.

it was finally her turn to compete and i watched as she masterfully balanced her board at the edge of the ramp.  after dropping in, i could hardly breathe for the thirty seconds she was on the ramp . . . doing kick turns and rock to fakies as if it was a natural thing to do.  there was my sweet little lily, my brave daughter, the only girl in the competition . . . so full of confidence and willing to put herself out there and be different from all the other little girls.  i was beaming. in a million years i never would have thought that the first thing i would be attending of hers would be a skateboard competition . . . but i wouldn’t have it any other way.

lily tells me that when she grows up she would like to be a missionary who takes skateboards to kids in other countries and tells them about Jesus. i have no doubt that this can happen.  God has designed her to be bold.  He intended for her to be exactly as she is.  i like to think that He was just as proud of me as i was of her on that day.  it has taken me a long time to get to where i am with her . . . to honor who she is instead of mourning who she is not . . . to let go of my preconceived ideas of what having a daughter should look like.  she is beautifully and wonderfully made . . . by a Father that loves her even more than I do.  i can’t wait to see how her story plays out.  i am so glad i get to go along for the ride!

lily skateboard competition

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shhh?!?!

“there are all kinds in God’s pocket.”  that’s what my mom always used to say.  i find it to be one of the most true statements about having children.  most people, when they start trying to get pregnant, dream about having the perfect child.  one who is bright, well mannered, good looking and kind.  i admit that i am one of those people.

when i first got pregnant in 2006, i had such grand ideas of what motherhood was going to be like.  i would have an easy pregnancy, give birth naturally, and have a beautiful baby . . . girl, hopefully.  two of these things came true.  (i ended up getting the epidural in conjunction with my first c-section.)  i was so excited to have a little girl . . . one that i could dress up in cute clothes and paint nails with . . . one that would have dance recitals and tea parties that i could attend.  it was going to be magical but it didn’t exactly happen for me.

God had a different plan for her . . . and me.

“there are all kinds in God’s pocket.”  some that are princesses and some that are tomboys.  some that love doll babies and some that love blocks.  some that are quiet and demure and some that are loud and bold.  He always has the perfect one picked specifically for you, though it sometimes is hard to accept.

there is so much to my eldest, lily.  confident.  creative.  bold.  and extremely loud.  the latter being overwhelming at times.  i swear that lily has no concept of volume control.  even around her sleeping baby sister she is so. darn. loud.  i find myself saying “shhhh” more than anything else these days which annoys me to no end.  why can’t she just be quiet?  why must she always talk so loud when we’re in the same room or car?  why God, when you created her did you make her this way?

a few months ago i sat with my friend, andrea, at a local coffee shop discussing this very thing.  i was lamenting to her about how hard my life was with lily at times.  i was very pregnant and weary from so many life changes that were happening all at the same time.  (a new house, a new baby, etc.)  i was struggling to handle her at home and she was struggling to sit still and be focused at school.  it seemed like nothing was going well and that there was no end in sight.  lily was so different from every other little girl that i knew both at church and in her class at school.  i was really having a hard time accepting and cherishing who she was.

after talking about her for some time andrea said something powerful to me that i will never forget.  she told me that God made lily exactly as He needed her to be to bring glory to Him.  w o w.  i couldn’t believe that i had never thought of it that way before.  i mean, i knew that God doesn’t make mistakes but i hadn’t been able to look at the big picture until that point.  andrea continued to tell me that God gives us traits because we are going to need them in the future.  she said that there was a bigger reason that lily was such a loud girl than i could currently see or understand.  lily was given boldness and fearlessness because God knows that in the future He will use girls like her to better His kingdom.  she told me that we have no idea what lily will become but that she very well could use her loudness to reach people for Him.

who knows what she will do!  she is bold enough to lead an army.  she is tough enough to be a corrections officer.  she is confident enough to go out into the mission field.  and loud enough to preach to the masses about her God!

as i sit here writing this the day is drawing to a close.  she is outside happily playing with her brother and her doggies . . . and is screaming her head off.  i am resisting the urge to yell for her to quiet down for what seems like the hundredth time today, and instead find myself praying. i am asking God for patience for the moment while at the same time i am praying that the end result will be her using this voice for His glory.  i pray that this extremely loud little girl continues to fearlessly love.  that she might use her voice to proclaim the good news to all who she encounters and to speak against evil.

Shout for joy, O daughter of Zion! Shout in triumph, O Israel! Rejoice and exult with all your heart, O daughter of Jerusalem!  –  Zephaniah 3:14

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out of the mouths of babes . . .

today while i was asking Siri for help on my iphone . . .

mom:  how many ounces are in a pound?

Siri:  I’m sorry but I am unable to answer right now.  Please try again later.

mom:  how many ounces are in 1 pound?

Siri:  Unfortunately, I can’t help right now.  I’m sorry.  (or something like that!)

lily:  mom, since she doesn’t want to answer you, maybe you should make your voice sound like someone else!

mom:  (stifling laughter) good idea, lil.

mom:  (in an exaggerated high pitched voice)  how many ounces are in a pound?

Siri:  1 pound equals 16 ounces.

good job at making my kid look smarter than me, Siri!

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a picture’s worth a thousand words

when i found out that i was pregnant with posy i told tom that i absolutely wanted professional photos taken of her and our family.  i knew that down the road she was bound to get screwed over for things that her older siblings had . . . especially lily, our first. like videos made of their first year of life and pretty much every milestone  documented so as to never forget it!  so knowing that she will most likely get none of that i decided to try and even the playing field from the beginning.  i told tom that these photos were the only thing that i really wanted and that i didn’t care how much they cost.  (ok, so i admit that i was having a major pity party for myself since i was pregnant . . . again.  sigh.)

fast forward to december.  sweet miss p was finally here and it was time for the photoshoot!  i was very excited but honestly had no real expectations since we would be dealing with children.  i’m so glad that was the case since gus refused to cooperate except for one picture.

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in all of the others this is what we got out of him . . .

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i. love. this. picture.  there is so much that was going on that you would never know just by looking at it . . . that is except for gus and his sourpuss face!  you’ve got to give him credit for his honesty.  but to anyone looking at this picture it would seem that we are just a happy family that is loving on our new baby/sister.  that much is definitely true . . . however what you don’t see is that tom and i were in the middle of a huge argument and didn’t even want to be in the same room together, let alone embrace each other.  what you also don’t see is that i’m holding a handful of posy’s poop that she had just done in my hand!  yes, i said poop!  and for any parents that read this you will know how grody that seedy, drippy, yellowish green baby poop can be!  we decided to keep going though since everyone was already in position and because posy was peacefully sleeping.  the only person who isn’t having a problem in this picture is sweet lily.  for once, she was giving us 100% cooperation and was so agreeable.  bless her heart!

even though gus isn’t smiling, this one is making it onto our wall of family pictures.  it will be a good reminder of the experience and how you sometimes just have to smile through the crap in life . . . literally.

anyway, i have really enjoyed the pictures that our photographer took.  they are beautiful and truly capture how smitten we are with posy already.

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we are so incredibly lucky to have such a sweet and peaceful baby.  God totally knew that we needed her in our lives and we can’t imagine life now without her. we are so so thankful!

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in a few short hours . . .

as you will probably notice, there hasn’t been an update to this blog since this past april.  it’s not that i’m even writing them for the the masses to read anyway really . . . but i merely do this for myself, my own memories, and for my family (especially my kids) to read and reflect on someday.

a lot has happened in our family’s little world and perhaps the biggest change will be happening today.  since april, we have finished building our home and have moved not one, but two houses worth of belongings to it.  moving trucks from orlando and cincinnati brought all of our family treasures and furniture to fill up one lovely home and give us a new start as a family.  also, my parent’s (christy’s) have basically moved to florida to be snowbirds and live in the guest house.  finally, and most importantly, God decided to bless us with another pregnancy resulting in today’s major change in our family.

i really haven’t felt like writing until today about my feelings on having another child, etc.  i’ve been extremely busy, and to be perfectly candid, didn’t exactly have the motivation because this pregnancy was unplanned and completely unexpected.  truthfully, i had a real hard time in accepting that we will be starting all over again.  all of the things i did with the first two pregnancies have fallen by the wayside this time around.  i’m trying not to beat myself up about it and am already hoping/praying that this child will forgive me for it someday.

today, at 4:30pm, tom and i will be in the hospital adding a sweet new baby girl to our family.  as the time ticks away i am feeling more and more anxious for how things are going to be.  in the past, i have been very honest as to why i didn’t want more kids.  lily is so unique and has such energy that at times she can be like two kids in one!  gus is so laid back and easy to get along with and is content just quietly playing by himself.  my kids are great.  we felt complete . . . but God knew otherwise.

i have moments when i feel completely at peace with this change and then the doubt creeps in . . . i hear a voice telling me that i already suck at mothering the two that i have and that this is just one more child i am going to screw up . . . it tells me that i am not going to be able to nurse (again) . . . that i am a failure because of it . . . that i will have postpartum depression again . . . that this c-section/recovery is going to be worse because i’m older now and already have two kids to run after . . . etc. etc. etc.

i have to combat these thoughts and feelings with truth and trust that God is greater and knows better.  i have to keep reminding myself that these are just lies Lies LIES that the devil wants me to believe so that i feel weak and uneasy.  but truthfully, even though i know this already, i often find myself giving into it.

today i am claiming Psalm 27:1 for myself and this situation . . .

The Lord is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear?  The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

God has a mighty plan for this little girl and has entrusted me to teach her to trust Him and to follow His path.  I’m going to just have to trust that He will guide me as i do it and that things will turn out alright.

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out of the mouths of babes . . .

tonight when i returned home from work, lily couldn’t wait to give me a big surprise that she had created for me.  she brought me upstairs and asked me to close my eyes before entering my bedroom.  when she opened the door this exchange happened . . .

lily:  surprise!  i have a surprise here in your room!!

mom:  wow!  i can’t wait to see it.  where is it?

lily:  in your boobie drawer!

mom:  um . . . my what?

lily:  your boobie drawer!  you know, right over here . . .

(she proceeds to lead me to the drawer which holds my bras . . . opening it to reveal a card laying among my under garments!)

lily:  see?  surprise!

 

i’m still laughing about this . . . hours later!

i love my hilariously clever daughter.

 

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out of the mouths of babes . . .

“dear God . . . thank you for horsies, teacups, eggs, roller coasters and pirates . . . and me!  amen!”

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