Wednesday, June 19, 2013

Waving the white flag....

So, I was talking to one of my best friends, Amy yesterday and I was just tired.  Like very tired.  And she asked me how it was going and instead of just saying my standard answer I actually said the truth....that I was tired and I wasn't sure how much longer I could go on being so tired.  Then, I immediately started backtracking and saying that I wasn't trying to complain and it wasn't more than I could handle etc., etc.  She just said, "Well, nothing is going to be perfect all the time.  It's okay to be tired." 

That got me thinking.  I, in no way, have the perfect life..nor do I THINK I have the perfect life but I think sometimes I can try so hard not to complain, ask for help, or want to seem like a whiny baby that I can somehow put off the perception that I am trying to make people think everything is going smoothly all the time.  I mean, goodness....isn't that what social media does for us at our finest?  On our blogs, facebook pages, twitter, instagram, or whatever else is out there that I don't know about, we only post good things 99% of the time.  When is the last time you posted the first "selfie" you took?  I mean, I will be honest...the pics I take of myself always include a child but generally you are seeing take 50.  The first 25 give me too many chins and the last 25 usually make my arm look like it could reach through the phone and tackle someone.  It's a very delicate situation to get that perfect picture and then post it for all to see.

Same with our "status updates".  Beth Moore talks about this in one of her Bible studies.  First of all the very title of "status update" makes us all feel so important.  I mean, lets be honest...if it was titled, "another thing I am doing or my kids just did" it wouldn't be nearly as appealing.  Don't get me wrong, I am the best of the best at clogging up a news feed.  I love facebook and think it's a great tool but somewhere along the way I think we become so set on putting on our gameface and trying to make ourselves look so "good" that we miss the point. 

That brings me back to my original thought.  I am still not trying to complain and I am still going to preface this by saying although my life is far from perfect, I am blessed beyond measure.  However, I am going to lay this out there to make it a little more real:

1)  I am tired.  Not just tired like my kids got up a few times to go to the bathroom and I couldn't go back to sleep...but seriously tired.  I even got to the point last night where I laid in bed when B was crying and cried myself and asked God why he didn't want me to sleep...ever...I tend to be dramatic when I am tired as well.
2.)  It's hard looking at B and knowing what he is facing and wondering why God saw fit to give my kids such a plush life and B is facing such hardships.  Again, rationally I know that we aren't promised an easy life but it's still tough. 
3.)  Trey was at camp all week this week and more than once I thought about the fact that if we didn't have baby B, Addison and I could be doing a lot more things and I would be relaxing.  Isn't that terrible??  However, it's simply the truth.

All that to say this.....I will never get on here and just complain away because it's really not my nature (except sometimes late at night to J.O.).  Especially now that we are fostering and I see such a glimpse of real life that's going on all around us.  I realize how blessed I am and even though I may be tired I have a husband who will walk along beside me and he is just as tired as I am.  However, I would never want to only put the highlights on here and pretend that life is gravy and I am doing a great job at it when in reality it's tough and I am failing a lot. 

Who knows...maybe one day on Facebook I will even put a "selfie" that shows more than one of my chins...but I highly doubt it. 

Saturday, June 15, 2013


This is most likely going to be a random, all over the place post but it's so hard sometimes to get down what I mean.  However, I do plan to try!

For the past week or so I have had this unsettled feeling.  Not unsettled like unhappy or discontented.....not at all!!  In fact, things couldn't be going better around here.  We are adjusting to life with 3 kids right now, my body has adjusted to getting around 4-5 hours a sleep at night (I'm not just saying's amazing how that works and we truly adjust), the kids are loving being out of school and attending summer activities.  It's all going really great.  I just haven't been able to shake the feeling that I am missing something.

I was sitting down reading my journal a couple of days ago and realized I started journaling almost exactly one year ago from this date.  I started journaling when we went to New York for a mission trip because it was the start of me realizing God was wanting me to do something different in my life.  As I was reading over my journal it hit me...when was the last time I sat in my rocking chair (other than to feed/rock the baby) and truly journaled, prayed and studied?  The sad reality is we have adjusted great to having the baby but I have totally allowed the other areas in my life to start fading away in the last 3 weeks.  Sure, I can rationalize it....I am tired, the first few days were rough, I went from regular schedule to none, etc.  However, what I realized is when life gets busy that is the first thing that goes.  Sad huh?  I was still trying my hardest to get up and run (not happening a ton), I was still making time to fit all the kids activities in, but I was not making this time a priority.  As soon as I would lay B down I would scurry off to do laundry, pick up the kitchen, or if it had been a sleepless night I would lay down too.  But one thing I have found is that when I get out of my regular time with God I begin to feel so unsettled. 

As I was feeling this way and sitting down to take the time to read and journal I realized how much we miss when we get away from our relationship with God.  I'm not talking about anything drastic here either...I'm talking about letting the day go by without really spending time with Him.  I am good about praying throughout my day but I mean, truly sitting down (even for 5-10 mins) and having some quiet time.

Of course as I thought of this my thoughts went to B who is having such a hard time getting "settled" to go to sleep.  Trey fought sleep so I am used to babies who don't want to give it up but he fights it so differently.  Trey would simply not close his eyes and then finally fall asleep after an hour of us patting him to sleep (huge first time parent mistake because we created a monster who needed patted to sleep until the age of 2).  B is different though...he will grunt and moan and twist to keep himself awake and then as soon as he gives it up he literally takes a breath and I can feel him relax in my arms.  It hit me the other day how I do this as well!  I will literally fight and grunt and moan and run away from things simply because I don't want to sit down and give in.  Then I will feel so unsettled and have to realize I need to come back to my relationship with Christ.  When I do that it's literally a huge sigh of relief and I can relax.  This is probably such a basic concept to most but I am learning how stubborn and hard headed I really am.  I love how sometimes I think we are the ones helping B and in reality God is using him to show me new things in my own Christian walk. 

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Being Judgemental

Lots of things have been on my mind this week.  Last week was our first full week with baby B and also my first experience in juvenile court.  It was nothing like I thought.  I really thought I would be outside the courtroom and not be a part of what was going on but that wasn't the case at all.  I was in the room and listening to all the proceedings.  However, what I think I was least prepared for was seeing B's parents.  I walked up and they were sitting on a bench waiting on court to start and I just wanted to cry and run away.  Not because I didn't want him being with his parents because I think he needs to see them, but because I wasn't prepared for the rough reality he is facing when he does go home to them.  This is the part of the "other world" that is right next door to us all that we have conveniently removed ourself from.  These are the people on the street begging for money, the people we walk away from in a store because they are so different than we are, they are literally the people we pass everyday and silently make a judgement about them without even knowing where they come from.

After I left court I was so torn.  I was torn between not wanting B to have to grow up in this reality and sickened by the fact that because of life circumstances these people haven't had all the opportunities I have had.  This mom is not a drug addict or alcoholic, she is a poverty stricken woman who is a child of the system herself.  She has no help, no support and no seeming way out.  It is such a different reality than I grew up in.  My biggest concern growing up was whether or not my mom was making my favorite dinner or what kind of car I would get when I turned 16. 

As I have thought so much about what rough reality he is facing I am constantly being reminded of why we are doing this.  The prayers that are literally covering this precious baby right now blow me away.  The kindness and support our church has shown us is almost unimaginable.  And the way I am constantly being reminded of not to judge others makes me realize I have so far to go.  In our service Sunday we had someone talk about the fact that people in poverty (or homeless) need relationships and to see Christ through us and not just "things" thrown at them. 

When I first met his parents I was so overwhelmed with emotion that I wasn't even able to talk to them but I am thankful I now have a face and a specific situation to pray for.  I saw his mom again at his visit on Friday and this time I was able to help her take B and show her some things on how to care for him.  My hope and my prayer is that she will see that I am not just someone who is taking care of her child while she can't but that I also care about her as a person.  I have no idea how long we will have him but I hope it's long enough to accomplish this.