Contradictory Cups

Some days I feel like I’m on cloud nine.

All of the scenarios I planned in my head

go through just as they should.

I’m flying through the air,

too high to care about the fall.

Smiling and laughing and playing

and hoping and forgetting and dreaming.

And then I get back home and

I realize that nothing had really changed.

The pain hadn’t gone away,

it had just been masked.

My cup was still so very close

to being empty,

even though it was just so full.

I’m still tired and I’m still angry.

I was happy a moment ago,

but now I’m questioning if

happiness is something I’ve ever really felt;

or rather, something I’ve made up in my head

in order to give myself the strength to keep going.

Was that laugh that overcame me

really as pure as I believed it to be?

Was that tug on my heart

really love pulsing through me?

Or was it just my imagination?

How can I have one cup so FULL,

yet so empty at the same time?

Am I allowed to appreciate the happiness,

even though I have so much indignation inside?

I’m contradicted.

Confused.

Dubious.

How can this be so?

Life is so amazing and bright

and marvelous and alluring,

yet so daunting and fearful

and jealous and painful.

Here I am.

Holding one cup,

yet I can’t decide

if it’s full or empty.

The contradictory cups.

Just another puzzle to solve.

We’re pregnant (again)!

We are super excited to share our big news finally! I’ve been waiting with anticipation to tell our friends for about six weeks now. We told our family just a few weeks ago. I was a little more hesitant to tell the world this time, since we had been trying to conceive for months with no luck.

On Tuesday, I will hit twelve weeks. I have been so sick this go-around, which is something I didn’t have much trouble with when I was pregnant with my daughter. Maybe that means this pregnancy will be a boy??? We are sooo hoping for a boy, but to be honest, I’ll be totally happy if we end up with another little girl. Our family will be complete and our hearts will be so full.

My due date is officially November 2nd, but since I had a previous C-section, I’ve decided to take the safe route and have another one. We will schedule this C-section the last week in October most likely.

So safe to say… LOTS of exciting things coming our way in 2021! Buying a new home and welcoming the completion of our family. We are overwhelmed with joy and so very happy that everything seems to be falling right into place. 😌

To all the MOMS on World Mental Health Day 🌱

Since the birth of our children, nearly every decision we make will bring us a sense of guilt. Put your baby to bed too early and you feel guilty for not enjoying your time with your baby while they are little. Keep your baby up too late, and you feel guilty that they aren’t getting enough rest. I have struggled with this immensely in the short stint of my experience with motherhood, and I know from many conversations I’ve had with other mothers of children of all ages, it is something that is never going to go away – as much as we wish it would. As mothers, we are under constant scrutiny and watchful eyes from everyone around us. We are criticized on how we feed our child, rather than the fact that the child is being fed at all. We feel the heat of dirty looks in the supermarket when we have a wailing child that we can’t quiet.  We take showers and look down at a body that looked very different just a few short months ago. We smile when you happily say hello to our children, but still feel the pain when you don’t acknowledge our presence with an equal amount of excitement. Do you care about me? Or do you only care about me enough to scrutinize who you think I am as a mother?

Well I will tell you who I am as a mother.

I am now devoted to life of selflessness. I have ran to the bathroom, cried out in overwhelming frustration, wiped my eyes, and returned back to my family with no one even noticing the crack of defeat I have hidden from my face. I have spent late nights worrying, planning, anticipating, and preparing. I love selflessly and whole-heartedly.

On my toughest days, I close my eyes and face the sky waiting for nature to give me strength… She always does.

I am persistent and I am determined. Even though there are times I feel like I might break under all of the pressure, the sun falls and rises, and so do I.

I am passionate. Passionate about my child. Passionate to build up the family that I have created. Passionate about the joys life has so graciously given me.

I am forgiving. I am consistent. I am fierce. I am patient.

Through the guilt that I so often face, I have come to understand that there are so many things that make me the best mother in my child’s world. Forget the pain you feel when you choose to do something that is in the best interest of you. We deserve some of our free will to be made solely in regards to our own wellness.

Because it’s hard being a selfless, persistent, determined, passionate, forgiving, consistent, and fierce MOM.

Good News … Finally!

Life has been absolutely CRAZYYYY lately… Is anyone else ready for fall, too? I haven’t had much time to put into my writing because I feel like I’m so busy I can’t even breathe sometimes. Everyone tells you it’s hard being a mom, but you can’t really prepare yourself for something like motherhood. I think what I miss the most about my life before my baby is that I had unlimited time to spend on myself. Not that I ever really did all that much, but the option was always there to pamper myself if I wanted to. My life has changed now to the point where I can’t even take a shower at a relaxing pace because I’m constantly worrying about what is going on outside of the bathroom…

However,

I do have some life updates that I feel like are worth sharing. I know we all get into slumps, and hopefully if you find yourself in one now, this will give you comfort that there is always light at the end of the tunnel!

I got a promotion at work! I’ve been working at my current company for almost a year now. I was hired on last August for a part-time position. Five months later, I took a leave for the birth of my daughter. Two short months after that, I returned back to work. Not long after my return, my manager asked me if I would be willing to work full-time hours. Since I was in a part-time position, I would still be ineligible for employee benefits, vacation and sick days, holiday pay, and performance-based bonuses. So, in short, I was working full-time hours, but not getting all of the benefits that the rest of the full-time staff was entitled to. To be frank, I was getting screwed!!

A full-time position opened up within my department, so I thought, ‘What the heck, I’ll just throw my name in the hat!’ My boss told me I’d still have to go through the entire hiring process of a three-person panel interview and online testing. Sooo, we scheduled the interview and testing. I walked out of it all totally disappointed and so sure they wouldn’t give me the job. I had envisioned the scenario over and over in my head and I felt like I had let myself down. It didn’t go at all like I thought it would. But of course, it’s human nature to be harder on yourself than what was reality. I was offered the job!!

I am now going to get good health insurance for myself and my daughter, a $2.50 raise, holiday pay, bonuses, etc. After some long, hard months, things have finally turned around.

I’m also officially enrolled at my university again to get a degree in Business Management. I start on August 26th. I’m suuuper excited to get back to learning and furthering my education. It’s going to be tough, but there is no one more determined than I!

How is your guys’ summer going? Our county fair started last night, which means FAIR FOOD, DEMOLITION DERBIES, AND VISITS TO THE BEER TENT! Can’t wait to hear from all of you! Sorry it’s been so long!

Mending My Crushed Ego

Okay. This almost pains me to write, but I always think it is important to reflect on who we are. So I’ll say it:

I am a jerk sometimes. And I lie to myself so that I don’t feel bad about it.

For some reason, today’s society tries to make us hard, cold individuals that classify all of our feelings as the same. In reality, everyone has their own traumas and experiences that shape their personality and language differently. Since when was it so normal to openly exclaim how much we hate our lives and how we don’t deserve for people to treat us in ways that we don’t like?

Don’t get me wrong.

Yeah, sometimes life just blows. And yes, you shouldn’t let people walk all over you… But for pete’s sake… I’m so sick of seeing everyone try to morph their own feelings and thoughts into the mold that they think that everyone else feels too. Feel your own feelings, take responsibility for the things you do, and do your best not to be a shitty person!

My fiance called me out today. He said, “Nobody can tell you anything! You always go straight into defense mode. Sometimes you’re just plain hard to be friends with. You say things that you shouldn’t, and sometimes you’re just plain mean!”

I opened my mouth to argue, and then I realized… If you argue, you’re proving his point. My mind was totally in the defense mode that he had just accused me of being in all the time. I sat there and pondered his words in silence as I stared at the ground. I was embarrassed- He was right. And the worst thing was… at that moment, I realized I had a shitty way of talking to myself. After I thought about his words, it made me think about how I put myself above others when I think to myself during conversation. For example, he told me, “You always think you’re right about everything.” And I immediately thought to myself, ‘Well I usually am!’

Wow.

How egotistical of me!! I actually thought that exact thought in my head. And I am extremely ashamed to admit it!!! So that is what led me to writing this for you guys today. Because let’s all be honest… We like to think that we are joyful, humble people, but are we really???

Later on in the afternoon, I grabbed him by the shirt and said, “Will you help me? I don’t want to be this nasty person that spews hate and anger, because I don’t think of myself that way.” When I think about qualities to describe myself, I lead myself to believe that I could never behave in such a way. It’s so incredibly hard to manage child rearing, full-time work, household chores and bills, a loving relationship, and making sure your mental health is in tact. I lost sight of my values and got enveloped in the stress of everyday life. I am not quite as great of a person as I sometimes like to think I am, and I can definitely improve. I’m just lucky I have someone that loves me enough to tell me when I’m wrong and willing to help me be the very best version of myself.

Dylan hurt my ego today. And I am sooooo thankful for it!

 

 

 

It Will Always Be Her

I love the way my daughter’s face lights up

When I walk into the room

After a long day of being away.

I can see she has missed me

Just as much as I’ve missed her

But then again,

I miss the days of

Being able to drop my things

As I walk into the door.

Oh, how a child can change your life

It’s beautiful and enriching

And I wouldn’t change a thing,

But sometimes I miss all the times

I used to be able to 

Invest into myself.

My happiness matters too,

But somehow I have fallen to the back

I am put on hold,

Because she will always matter more to me

Than even myself

I will give and give and give 

Before I ever allow someone 

The opportunity to question

Who I care about more

Because it will always be her.

It will always be her.

 

In the Morning

I wake up in the morning

Feeling like an absolute star

I’m motivated to start the day

And conquer all that lies before me

But then I get out of bed

And start thinking about

All the ways I’ve let myself down

Too clingy

Too chubby

Too shy

Too busy

Too self-conscious

I look in the mirror and 

Run my fingers through my

Wavy long hair

I like the way it falls against my back

And frames my face

I layer on mascara and

Study the freckles

That cover my nose and cheeks

Maybe I am beautiful

Then I begin to realize 

I’m not as bad as I think I am

I don’t give myself enough credit

For I have strength in so many ways

I am fierce

I am determined

I am smart

I am reliable

And I am out of bed today

And that is a feat

That not all can achieve

 

Finding the Happy Medium Between Caring For Others & Caring For Yourself

I have a hard time making sure that I take time to do things for ME. I am totally the type of person to give and give and give myself away to everyone else in order to keep those around me happy. I truly believe that giving is better than receiving, but let’s be honest… It does feel good to receive!

You owe it to yourself to not feel shame about doing what makes you happy. I used to think that doing so much for everyone else was simply me wearing myself down and not taking exploring the things that I love. But then I changed my perspective. I love to comfort people. I love to take weight off of people’s shoulders. Ilove making people feel welcome and at home. And just because I go out of my way to make those things happen, doesn’t mean that I care any less about myself. It makes me happy making others happy, and I shouldn’t feel shame or regret about the fact that caring for others (sometimes more than myself) brings me joy.

Find a happy medium. So… yeah. I like to make others happy. Most people do. But what you have to keep in mind is that you can’t truly be happy unless you are happy with yourself. You can give endlessly for those around you, but if you aren’t giving yourself even half of the attention that you are giving to everyone else, there is no way you can possibly be happy. I can’t stress just how important it is to spoil yourself every once in a while. Sometimes I forget that my happiness and mental health matters too, and it always end in a crying fit of rage and jealousy. So find a happy medium. It’s good to care for others, but do not forget that YOU MATTER TOO!

Spoil yourself! Believe it or not, but I am not the typical girl. I would much rather go hiking or fishing than going to get my nails or hair done. The point is, it’s important to identify the things that bring your mind and body peace and do those things! If you’re not sure what things you would enjoy to do for yourself, there is nothing wrong with exploring to find what works best for you and your schedule. You deserve to be spoiled because YOU ARE AN AMAZING, LIVING CREATURE! Life is hard! Make the most of it!

Here are some ideas of activities you can do to make sure you are caring for yourself:

  • Play an instrument
  • Read a book
  • Wash your face or put on a face mask (I tried this for the first time the other day, and even though it was a quick and subtle fifteen minutes, I couldn’t believe how refreshed I felt afterwards!)
  • Ride a bike
  • Paint your nails
  • Take a bubble bath
  • Go for a walk or drive alone
  • Put lotion on (I have recently made this a habit after every shower. It sounds silly, but that extra 5-10 minutes I get alone to myself after a shower really makes a difference! Plus, who doesn’t love soft, smooth skin!)
  • Take yourself on a date
  • Paint, write, or draw
  • Listen to music

Whatever activity or hobby you decide to take part in, make sure you are doing it without distraction and focusing on reaching a peaceful and happy state of mind. What do you do to rejuvenate your mind and body? I’d love to hear some of your ideas or recommended products!! Drop a comment and let’s chat!!

The Night Before Her Birth

Until you’ve experienced it, childbirth is a scary thing to think about. For a long time, it was at the very TOP of my list of biggest fears. I didn’t have any experiences to compare the most painful and emotional thing that I was ever going to put myself through, so the thought of becoming a mom was absolutely terrifying for me. There is no moment in your life that will prepare you for motherhood. It’s something you just have to dive into, even if you’re scared shitless and don’t have a clue what to expect.

My daughter was measuring two weeks ahead and in the 99 percentile from the very first ultrasound. As my due date got closer and my belly got bigger, our concerns became about the method of delivery. I am 5’3” (on a good day) and my hips are pretty narrow. My doctor was worried about delivering vaginally because she may have gotten stuck on the way out, resulting in a traumatizing delivery or emergency c-section. He left the decision up to me: Did I want to try a vaginal delivery and risk her getting stuck? Or did I want to go ahead and schedule a c-section and avoid the trauma?

36 weeks- large & glowing!

After a lot of deliberation and weighing the options carefully, I decided to have the c-section.

With that decision came a lot of emotion. For some reason, people have this invalid perception that having a baby cut from your womb is “the easy way out.” I am here to tell you that it is without a doubt, not an easier way to give birth. Any method of delivery is beautiful, worthy, courageous, and just plain hard.

Seven layers of flesh are cut during a c-section.

The recovery time is much slower than that of a vaginal birth.

You are awake the entire time, knowing that your insides are open and laid out behind the sheet in front of you.

I didn’t get to hold my baby until almost an hour after she was born.

Five months later and I still can’t feel nearly half of my abdomen when I touch it.

I went in to be induced at 39 weeks, on January 5, 2019. I was told to be at the hospital by 6am. The night before I knew I had to be there, I laid in bed with my mind spinning and imagining what I was going to be experiencing in just a few short hours. 

I don’t think I even blinked the entire night.

Being induced and knowing that it is most likely going to result in a c-section is perhaps one of the most nerve-wracking things I’ve ever gone through. I laid there that night and thought about how once I left the house, I would not return until the human that I had been housing inside of me for the last nine months was introduced to the outside world. I worried about how I would be as a first-time mom. I watched videos of c-sections and scared myself even more (Still cool though – I’m a science nerd). I was more scared the night before we went to the hospital than I was the entire nine months prior combined.

Laying in bed with my fiancé the night before we went to the hospital

Four o’clock came fast. After what seemed like year-long pregnancy, it was finally time to get up, grab my bags, and go meet my baby girl for the very first time.

I never knew excitement and terror could co-exist so charmingly.

Baby time! Our picture together when we arrived at the hospital 🎉

•••••••••••••••••••••

Stay tuned for my birth story. I will publish at a later time!! ❤️❤️❤️

Taking care of YOU

Today has been the first day since the birth of my beautiful babe that I have had practically an entire day to myself. It has been full of rejuvenation, self-reflection, and being able to finally catch up on laundry!!

I have days where I feel completely obliterated. Days where I feel like I have nothing; even though I am surrounded by love, happiness, and a beautiful family.

Days like today help me realize how important it is to TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF. I haven’t had this great of a day in I don’t know how long, and I thought it was important to remind you all of how important it is to make sure that you have a healthy state-of-mind and to pursue the things that you love.

What makes you love you?

What are the things that you love the most about yourself?

What hobbies do you enjoy that you haven’t pursued in awhile?

What enjoyable actions have you been overlooking because you’ve been “too busy?”

MAKE TIME FOR YOURSELF, FRIENDS. Make sure you are continuously in pursuance of the things that MAKE YOU… YOU!!!

Often times we find ourselves SOOOO infatuated with the idea of caring for everyone else except for ourselves. 

Change that.

Do the things that set your soul on fire.

Chase your dreams.

Be yourself.

Always remember to take care of YOU.