Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mother's Day Lesson

Mother's Day has come again and will soon be gone.  Another year of attempting to wrap our minds around just how important and precious these women are to us.  My inner being digs for the right words, but for each one it is different.  I have many women in my life who have guided and encouraged me on my 31 year journey.  I am, at this very minute, raising my own small people.  And with each year I seek for new ways of expressing my thankfulness.

This year, I can't say I have found the words.
This year, I understand why for so many years growing up my dad spent part of Mother's Day with fresh tears in his eyes.

It was almost as if a lightbulb clicked on, revealing a piece of my daddy's world that I had never understood.

He lost his mama when he was only seventeen.

I think I just assumed he missed his mom on Mother's Day.  And while I do believe this is true, I have learned that there is also an indescribable ache.  An ache that starts as a reminiscent heart, that turns into beautifully painful memories and wishful musings that escape as quiet, tender tears.

This year, my heart was heavy and I had my own fresh tears.

These tears cannot be dried by loving words.  These tears don't need to hugged away, kissed away or consoled in anyway.  These tears just need to fall because I am sad she's gone.  I am sad that she won't see me being a mom.  I am sad that she won't grow old holding grand babies on her lap.  I am sad we can't swap child-rearing stories.  I am just sad.

This year, I get it.  Maybe every year will bring an hour or two of that dull headache that gives way to freeing tears.  I will mourn for a mama that is missed.

And then I will laugh and tickle and hug on my babies.  I will wrap my arms around my sweet mama- in-law and give thanks.

And I will remember.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Go Fly a Kite!

"Go fly a kite!"
The dictionary defines this idiom as "something that you say in order to tell someone who is annoying you to go away".

Well, Mrs. Easter Bunny hopped into our living room with two floppy kites...Ninja Turtle for him and Barbie for her.

Today, we released the skinny tails, unwound the delicate string and watched as they floated higher, higher and higher.

I began to wonder if there was much else so peaceful.  The gentle flapping.  The slow dips and dives. Our faces turned Heavenward with the newness of sun warming our cheeks.  

The kids were giggling and joyfully running, trying to launch their paper birds.  

I was snap snapping photos and scrambling for kite strings.

All too soon our kite flying excursion came to an end when the kids were lured to the brightly colored slides and swings.  

However, should someone ever tell me to "Go fly a kite" I will not be offended.

It's far too fun!

Enjoy some fun pictures from today!

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

We're Going on a Bear Hunt

Maybe it's a not a BEAR hunt, but I am hunting.  I'm hunting for "me".   

Side-bar:  I wouldn't really call this a mid-life crisis, as I'm only 30.  Maybe a mid-mid life crisis?

In the story, dad takes the kids for a trek through the woods to find a bear, chanting "we're not scared!" the whole way.  Along the way they run into the grass, then the forest, then a river, and they finally reach the cave...where they actually find the bear.  Now they run away from the bear back home.  I guess dad really never imagined they'd FIND one!

I have a million things on my plate right now...and I rarely feel like I'm doing any of them well (or at least at a 100%), but part of me yearns for the crafty, artsy, free side of me that I think is buried deep.

Just today I have made goals of sewing my girl some cute summer dresses after seeing some adorable items on blogs and uh-hmm, Pinterest. (Hello, my name is Kayla and I'm addicted to Pinterest).  In my head I said, "Oh man!  I can totally make that! And cheaper too!"  We'll see...I own a sewing machine so how hard can it be? :)  Obstacle #1...I own no patterns or REAL sewing skills.  Just what I've taught myself.

Just today I have been plotting my summer with my kiddos, telling myself I was finally going to be prepared for the day in and day out of being home with them again.   Obstacle #2...Mr. Kindergartener will be in Summer School for part of it.

Just today I have planned to do many wonderful and new things!  Obstacle #3...I have a million things on my plate right now...and I rarely feel like I'm doing any of them well (or at least at a 100%).  I know my house is not spic and span.  I know I have clothes that need to be washed (or rewashed...I think I left a load in the washer. :(  Ooops.)  I know I have papers to grade.  I know I need to...And the list goes on.

But part of me yearns for the crafty, artsy, free side of me that I think is buried deep.  Deep in that bear cave.

And my bear is there too...hibernating.  It's waiting to be jarred back to life.

I've seen other moms find their "bear in the cave" and I rejoice for them!  I want to find something I enjoy doing just for fun, maybe for others, maybe for my kids, maybe for my husband and maybe just for me.  They inspire me to pull up my bear hunting boots and set out on an adventure!  Oh, and like this dad, my kids are definitely coming with me on this adventure! 

I'm on a hunt for who I am and who I'd like to be. 

I don't plan on finding the "cave" tonight, or even tomorrow.

But hopefully I can awaken the bear soon. 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Little Blessings

Today after school I stumbled upon a blog (I'm a blog junkie...).  I was on one blog reading a recipe for Pollo Fundido and happily planning our supper.  Over to the right I saw a link for "Praying for Jonah" with a precious little boy's picture.  I was intrigued so I clicked on it. 

I read about Jonah turning four and applauded their parenting skills to "raise up a child".  I read "Our Story" and smiled, cried and sighed deep sighs. 

I clicked on "EB's Sweeties" and found even more children or families effected by this painful disease, that five minutes before I had never heard of. 

My heart hurt for these parents and kids who suffer daily.  My head felt guilty for my "ho-hum, grouchy" day.  My arms ached for the hugs from my own precious ones waiting for my day to be done.

I thank God for my ornery babies that leave their toys everywhere, spill their drink on the freshly cleaned couch, who steal my phone from the charger before my alarm goes off and who smear grimy hand prints on my clothes....because they are here...healthy, happy, and energetic. 

Click here to read Jonah's story.
I, too, and praying for Jonah.  Won't you? 

Friday, March 1, 2013

One Year Anniversary

I remember the feeling of driving away from St. Mary's Hospital around this exact time with many emotions.  Mama had just passed away at 2:45 pm (Feb. 29th), with us all gathered around her ICU bed, holding hands and quietly getting to say our goodbyes.  The ICU nurse turned off her monitor and stood, almost invisible, as she silently turned down her oxygen level little by little.  We knew it would be quick, but we were shocked at just HOW quick our little wife, mama, grandma, sister and friend slipped from this life into the next.  We left the room while they prepared her to leave, returned to gain a few final moments with her and then packed up our belongings...all 2 weeks worth...and piled into cars.

So many emotions...I wanted to be strong for my kids and Daddy as we drove home.  I wanted to weep and wail over my mama's passing.  I wanted to rejoice that she was no longer lieing in a hospital bed hooked up to four chest tubes, a ventilator and whatever else they had run in her.  I wanted to scream at the cars happily zooming by when I felt like I was moving at a snail's pace.

More than anything, I wanted to scream.  It wasn't fair that the whole world kept turning when I wanted it to stand still.  Every person kept right on functioning and going about their business oblivious to my family's pain.

Even then, I knew how ridiculous I sounded.  How could the speeding car next to me know that my spirited mama just stepped into Heaven?  How could they know the hurt I was feeling so deeply?

But all that didn't really matter then.

Speed ahead 365 days...Today I fought that same urge to scream "Do you not know what today means to my family?" Of course the friendly cashier girl doesn't know.  Of course the talkative third graders didn't know.  I realize this.  And no, noeone got screamed at today. :)  

And just like a year ago, I cried.   Today I cried tears of remembrance.  Today I held back tears of gratitude as countless people remembered me as they walked by...some with unshed tears brimming in their eyes.   I've been labeled an avoider (I took a's very accurate. ) :)  I avoid confrontation. I avoid uncomfortable situations.  I even avoid grief at times.  However, I gladly embrace the love and smiles from friends and family who understand our tough day, who has experienced themselves, and who just loved my mama like they love their own.

I do not write this to receive sympathy.  I am not "avoiding" sadness, just expressing my feelings and gratitude for those who have lifted my family in prayers over the last year.  I'm certain we can never express to you just how grateful we are for them.

Tonight, we will go to daddy's, cry a few tears over our loss but mainly rejoice in her healing and reward because it's what she would want.  She always said she just wanted her babies home with her. Tonight we'll all be home.  One day, we'll all join her in our Heavenly Home.

Look for me, mama.  For I will be there too. Click on the "look for me" to hear a song.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Blog Balm

Sometimes, most of the time, others can say it so much better than I can.

Usually when I'm down in the dumps, I read blogs.  I never even knew what a blog was or how to find one a few years ago, but now I roll in them, enjoying the shared moments of mommyhood with others.  After my "Miss Kennedy" blog last night I read this one this morning and it soothed my soul because, WOW! That's me! (almost even down to the age thing!!) 

Click below on Little Miss Momma's link and hopefully she will remind you that the "we" is so much better than the "me".

The Best of Life - Mommy Tales, My Life, Real Life - Little Miss Momma

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Miss Kennedy

She's silly and loads of fun.
Bedtime is hard all of a sudden.
Church is excruciating.
Cleaning the house is hopeless.
Shopping excursions are painful.

Need I go on?  Miss Kennedy, as she's been called while still in vetro, is a handful!  She is stubborn, curious, strong willed and majorly independent.

I love her to death and can rarely stay "angry" with her for more than a few seconds because of her bouncing curls and mischevious smile, but GOOD GRIEF!

Yes, I'm sure my patience is a problem.  The here-and-now (messy house, screaming in church, etc...) is a problem.  But I don't think it's the MAIN problem.

So, what is the main problem??  Here we go.  I live in fear that my children will turn out to be wild hooligans that people will look at us and say "Holy cow.  What did you do to them!?"  Now I realize this is probably irrational, but to my irrational self, it makes perfect sense.  A mother's job is, truly, never done.

Whoever said parenting wasn't easy, was right!  Not only is it not easy, it is HARD.  We are constantly teaching, learning, experimenting, failing, succeeding and redoing.  We are cleaning, picking up and loving.  We are chasing, scrubbing, soothing and bathing. 

I know that the time we invest in their lives during these years will return to us, ten fold.  So, we must push on.  We have no other choice.  We WANT to push on....because we love our kiddos and care about their futures.

One day I know I will look back and never remember these years. I'm sure Jackson was just as trying, but the details are fuzzy. (Thank goodness! There's hope!) I know these years pass quickly, so "this too shall pass".

So tonight, I will go in and lay my hands on her after she's FINALLY gotten on that dreamland train and pray for guidance on how to raise this rambunctious child.  I don't want to break her...she'll need that fiery spirit one day.  I just want to do the best I can with her to prepare her for that day.

She really is beautiful...inside and out.
"Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it."  Proverbs 22:6