Sunday, February 24, 2013

on loving anyway

I haven't shared on here at all about some family issues going on because they are personal and hard and I don't want to hurt anyone by discussing things publicly.

(and before I go further, I should mention that the issues are not at all marital. jeremiah and I are good :) 

Not writing about all of this has been hard because these issues have been so heavy on my heart for years and I have felt many times like it would release some of the pain
to just write about it. 

But I don't want to discuss the hurt today.
 I want to share the flip side of the upset. 

In all of the hardness, sadness, and heart ache, I have {begrudgingly}learned something that has changed me.  

I have found that it is still better, 
no matter what, 
to always, 
love anyway. 

To keep trying, to keep loving, and to let go of what is done. 

Because hanging on to the pain, I have learned, plants a dark spot that grows in your heart and
drowns out the light.

I am learning to let go of expectations and the picture I had in my head of what things should look like, instead accepting how it is, and moving forward the best I can with the new picture .
I am learning a lot about forgiveness, and in turn, learning about my own issues that I need to work on.

The bottom line is, I have made mistakes and caused hurt in my life, too, and yet God still loves me and grants me Grace. 
He is merciful and forgiving- 
and I have done nothing to deserve this at all. 
He just does because He just is. 

So here I am, the recipient of this all embracing, unrelenting, undeserving love, mercy, and forgiveness, and yet I am clinging on to that forgiveness and mercy like I only have so much to give out, and I am not willing to waste it on anyone I find undeserving. 

Awesome, right?

There have been so many times that I've dragged my feet and fought the need to forgive. Honestly, I have called my friend Sherri several times, looking for an out, and saying 
'look, I have loved anyway, I have forgiven, I have tried, and I have let go, but here we go again with the hurt. can I just be done with the forgiving now? at what point can I stop turning my cheek.
dude, I GOT NO CHEEKS LEFT and the sting is just TOO MUCH!?!?' 

{Poor Sherri. When I struggle or need help sorting through things, and need a faith-filled compass, she is who I turn to. Everyone needs a Sherri. When I want guidance, she is who I call. And when I am stuck on something, she unmuddles it for me.}

 Gently, she always tells me what I knew all along but I didn't want to act on.
How ridiculous is that?
I know what is right, and at 35, I still fight it like crazy. I call her knowing that the answer is still, and always will be, to keep loving, but hoping that maybe Sherri knows of some obscure passage that I'm not aware of. A passage that basically says 'keep forgiving, but if it gets too tiring or it is getting really inconvenient, then the right thing to do is to tell the offender how wrong they are and cast your judgment loudly upon them.'

Yeah, I just said that. That's my ugly, right there. 

The crazy thing about all of this.....there is something about this pain and sadness that have blessed me. BLESSED ME. 

I have had to heavily lean into my God and just trust in Him, that unconditional love was and is the right thing, and in leaning into Him, I feel He has held me. He has given me the answer and quieted my questioning. I have felt lighter and unburdened, knowing that when I give it to Him, it's not mine alone anymore. I am not up all night wondering if I did the right thing. Because He tells us that to love is not wrong. I feel a peace in forgiveness that I didn't know before. And I feel a comfort and love I was missing because it's brought me closer to my Heavenly Father. 

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I still have moments (lots of them) that I wish things were different. I wish things were like the picture I see in my head, that I could go back to the days before all the pain and upset. I start typing out texts or emails that are definitely not loving. I get upset, and I look at my husband pitifully, crying out "whyyyyyyyyyy???". Then I delete those texts. I let the anger wash over me. My husband says something that softens me. I wait for the quiet of the night and I turn to His Word. 

And, when still muddled and hurting, I call my friend Sherri.

I am not sure why I felt compelled to share all of this now. I certainly don't think I am a great example of His loving forgiveness. I'm trying, but I'm made aware often, how much I need to grow in forgiveness.
But I do believe that when something is placed heavily on your heart, you need to listen and respond.

If you are reading this and feeling like you are tired of hurt and upset, I'd like to give you a big giant hug, wrap you tight and absorb some of that hurt for you- and tell you to keep loving.
To not let go of that, to keep acting out of love
-- if not for them,
then for yourself.


Friday, February 22, 2013


My husband is packing right now. I'm not happy about it. He asked me to make pancakes for dinner, his last homecooked meal for a while. My family likes the brinner. They like it a lot. It was a regular thing for a while, but since my leg ish, I haven't been cooking a lot lately. But my man wanted pancakes, and PW's pancakes is what I made.

And now he is packing his things and even though this little training mission is only a month, I'm really sad. He has been home for 9 months, and those 9 months have been wonderful. I know there are plenty of "strong Navy wives" who hold it together and keep their shoulders up underneath the bowing weight of absence and deployments. Those wives hold their tears back, stay strong for their husbands, focus on the positive, and just get busy with the getting on with it part. Let me just say now- I am not one of those. At least, not at first. I get emotional and wonder if I am strong enough, equipped enough to do this whole life bit on my own, and be fun, patient, and good enough for my kids on my own. I just thought y'all should know......if you thought I was one of the tough ones who holds her tears back and always puts a positive spin on these crappy goodbyes, well, you'd be wrong. I struggle at first, but pull it together eventually, it just takes a few days.

In order to distract myself, I decided to come on here and write, but I think the combination of hormones, emotions, and my pain pill are messing with my focus. So I am just going to blurt instead of try to write something cohesive and logical, which, by the way, are overrated qualities, anyway.

I got another cortisone shot in my knee today. It sucked. My OO told the intern to go shallow and avoid 'the mass' (as in, big gross tumor, not the state that hosted that crazy tea party), but I think dude needs q-tips because it did not feel shallow and I am pretty sure he scraped my bone.

We almost bought a minivan this weekend. Instead we just went to Starbucks.

I am 29 weeks pregnant now, and according to my pregnancy app the baby is 17 inches, almost 3 lbs, and the size of a small cabbage. If you say so, app, because that seems like a really big cabbage. Also, I don't like cole slaw. I do like clementines, however. I am curious what the world record is on clementine eating, because I think I got it. If not, then I'm for sure a runner up.

I watched Ratatouille yesterday with the kids. I have no idea what is in ratatouille, but something about that drawing of it and the critics reaction always makes me want it. That's a sign of a good food drawer.

I was sitting on the couch with Kaiti the other day and out of nowhere she said "Eyebrows are a funny thing to just be stuck on our heads." I sat and thought about it, and indeed, she is right. Eyebrows are a funny thing. And so is Kaiti.

I bought Bridesmaids on iTunes- that's a definitely a movie I needed to own. When I wake up at 3am, I watch it on my phone. Sometimes I just skip to the airplane part where she says "I'm Mrs. Eee--Iglesias" and wake my husband up because my silent laughter shakes the bed.

My husband went to Target and got me a shelf system to organize and store my craft stuff and fabric. Then he went back and got me another one. I love having my things put neatly away and arranged in a way that is fun to look at.

Yesterday, while doing my glucose test at the naval clinic, the girl next to me was having super loud, super inappropriate conversations on her cell phone. Within 10 minutes I learned that she fights dirty with her boyfriend and friends, was wearing an itchy green thong, and was really ticked about her man dissing her for his brothers because they can't do what SHE DO, you know? I kept making the "REALLY?!?!" face at her and sighing loudly but she was oblivious. I shared the experience on Instagram, and Kristen said while doing her glucose test, there was a women clipping her nails in the waiting area of the lab. CLIPPING HER FLIPPING NAILS. This world gon' crazy. I would have barfed all over the woman's newly trimmed fingers. Something about the sound of another person clipping their nails grosses me out.

Speaking of nails, I got the sweetest package from my penpal buddy Siobhan. For no reason whatsoever she sent me a package filled with the cutest outfits for the baby, a bunch of amazing crafty things (RED GLITTER!! Martha Stewart Glitter pens!!! Glitter paints!!!!), the prettiest Essie nail polish, AND a ton of candy. I am so blown away by her thoughtfulness, kindness and generosity!! A thank you card ain't gonna cut it here. I need to rain thanks down big on Siobahn!!

In my dream last night, I was holding and nursing the baby on a porch in a hammock. I woke up so happy. I cannot wait for this little guy to get here. (And I think I want a hammock.) Baby boy still doesn't have a name, though we call him Mambo for in, Ladies and gentlemen, this is Mambo number FIVE. I taught Evie how to say Declan and Teague, you know, just in case my husband comes around. Jeremiah wasn't thrilled. He's still pushing his Eli agenda.

Jack was waiting for me to get ready for the day earlier this week, because I promised I would play Headbandz with him once I was all set. I walked out of the bathroom ready to go, and Jack said "mama, you're not weddy yet. you forget to do your pony tail?" Daaaaaannnnngg, Jack, that was harsh.

The other night at Target a man, probably in his late 20s, walked directly over to me and touched my belly, then asked when I was due. I don't really mind when people do that, but it's typically people I know or older ladies. So this stranger-man, who was shopping with a woman, putting his hand on my belly kinda threw me off, especially because it seemed so purposeful. I told him the baby would be here in early May and he asked what I was having and if it was my first. I told him we were having a boy and that he will be our 5th. His eyes about fell out his head, he pulled his hand back and said 'Whooooooahhh girlllllll. 5th?!? WHOAH.' Then he walked away. I went back to buying Lansinoh and nursing pads and muttered 'what the heck just happened there?', and the lady who was down the aisle from me said 'Yeah, that was bizarre.' Yes, yes, it was, lady.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

coffee date and filling in the blanks

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Hi friends! It's been so long since I have written, and I sort of kick myself for neglecting this little corner of mine. There have been many late nights where I thought, I should just sit down and write, because that is how I process. But life happens, things come up, and I realize some things are better left bouncing in my head.

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Since I wrote last, we've had a hundred different things happen. Last time, I shared that we are expecting, and we found out in December that we are having a BABY BOY!!! We have not settled on a name yet- more about that in a minute. But, is he cute or what?!?!?!
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I finished grad school! I am so incredibly thrilled to have that done. I never felt settled or relaxed during school because I knew there was always something I needed to be doing- whether it was reading text books, responding to discussion posts, papers, quizzes, case studies, etc. More than anything else, I feel like now that I am done, I finally have some peace and I get time back, and it is lovely!

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We've been in this house for a year now and after a lot of thought, Jeremiah and I decided to move to a new area. It was a tough decision, mostly because right now we live 2 minutes from his squadron. Where we are moving is 40 minutes away from his work. So that part really stinks. But we think the positives outweigh the negatives, so now we are just waiting on a call to let us know that a house is ready for us. It could be 10 days or it could be 10 months, which is a little stressful, so I just try not to think about that part. The area we are moving to is very country compared to where we are now. The kids will have a 12 mile bus ride to school, and we are going to be on the border of North Carolina and Virginia. I am really excited about it for so many reasons. The schools out there are amazing, the house is bigger (the house we are in now is a measly 1400 square feet-- the new house is 2100 sq ft), and I will have a dedicated space to work. Oh- that's another thing..... my job changed a lot over the past month, so I went from working about 5-10 hours a week to 25-35 hours a week. I am so fortunate that my boss allows me to work at times that are convenient for my family, and all from home. And this new house will let me have space where I can focus-- something hard to come by at the coffee table with kids swirling all around me. 

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After having my husband home 9 months, we are now preparing to say goodbye to him again. He will be doing some "quick" (less then 2 months) trips before he does a longer trip. I am just hoping and praying that he will be here when the baby is born. And hoping he will be here when it is time to move, because holy moly, that would be hard to do without him. I am so ready for the deployment stage of our lives to be over. It's just so exhausting over time and I hate that we miss out on time with him.

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The baby is due May 11, but as of now, my OB team is talking about taking him around May 1. I can't believe I will have a baby boy in 12 weeks!!!!! It might be a little before that, so I am trying my best to prepare as much as I can now.

In December I started having some issues with my knee. The pain was insane and I could not bear any weight on my right leg. I was on crutches and pain meds as doctors tried to figure out what it was. They initially thought meniscal tear, then cartilage tear, then joint infection, possibly arthritis. It was a mess. I went to the hospital about 10 times in a 6 week period, had my knee tapped twice, cortisone shots, and nothing was working. Finally, I was sent to a specialty doctor after lab results came back indicating something else. They decided to do an MRI and that confirmed that I have a tumor in my knee. It's more than likely a benign tumor, called PVNS, or an osteo sarcoma. The plan right now is for me to deliver the baby and then have surgery on my leg to remove the tumor and go from there. The idea of being on pain meds and using a cane up until delivery is not ideal, but is it what it is. The good news is with the pain meds, my blood pressure is back to normal, I don't have to go to physical therapy 5 days a week anymore- because obviously therapy can't fix a tumor, and the baby seems unaffected by all of this. All blessings! I am so thankful for my Navy family that has been so wonderful to us..... and even if Jeremiah has to deploy, I know that they will be here for me, and that is huge comfort.

So, that's the past few months. The kids are great! Wild and crazy as ever. The boys are really excited about moving.....Kaiti is sad that she will have to leave her friend Kaitlin and Citlali. But, as we have explained to her many times, they are both from Navy families and are moving soon, too. 

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I am fixing to start my very first quilt. So intimidated by this process, but I have wanted to for so long and feeling like I just need to jump on in. If you have any first-time-quilting tips you'd like to share, I'd love you for it! I decided to just make my own pattern so that way if it doesn't go well I can just pretend that is how it is supposed to be :)

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Okay, one last thing. I mentioned earlier that this baby boy is still not named. I have a list of names I love, but my husband can be a little vanilla when it comes to names, so he has vetoed all of my suggestions. 

My picks are:


Jeremiah's picks:


So friends, I need some help! I also really like the name Aiden, but when I read that it meant 'little fiery one' I decided I better not because I already have one of those, and I have the wrinkle lines to prove it..... (I'll give you one guess who I am talking about.)

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Does anyone have any suggestions? I thought if I shared names that I love it would give you a sense of what I am looking for. What say you?


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