… I used to run

…. like actually run in Nikes but gave that up when I got pregnant with the twins. Then, I thought I’d be that mom jogging the trails in the park pushing my girls in their jogging stroller. I made a lot of excuses and major life stuff stop me from doing that……. plus, two kids + after run tired = nah, sis.

I look up and it’s been YEARS since I’ve laced up tennis shoes and pushed my body & mind past comfort to not only look completely attractive in all my mom bod-ness naked & dressed in purty dresses & jeans in heels and flip flops with a baby on hip & holding little hands, but to also feel capable, empowered, and strong again.

I also ran from my emotions. And, for someone who feels it all and can do a pretty decent job of expressing those feels, I quit. Literally & intentionally stopped feeling. Or tried to. I stuffed my emotions down deep, as well as my face (thank the Lord for Plexus!), on days I did.not.want. to deal with the junk, defend myself, fight for myself, and just needed a break. When life is happening and it’s all on you, time spent (read:wasted) on feelings are a distraction. The days I did spend defending, pushing, fighting, & trying left me … leave me …. exhausted emotionally and physically and I just can’t with too much.

Feelings left me depleted. Distracted. And, unavailable.

But, the Lord has a way of softening your heart with his love and mercies. with his truths and faithfulness. with his forever acceptance of you no matter how you feel, how often or deeply you feel it. No matter how often you bring it up or how many times you cry over the same thing. Or how long that hurt stings. He gets it and does nothing but continue to love on you and bandage those wounds.

…. if you let him.

… what isn’t exposed can’t be healed.

Without healing there can’t be redemption, restoration, or newness.

And, if there’s anything I want more for my girls and myself, is new life. New joys. New peace. New experiences. New growth.

New. Stronger. Wiser. Deeper. And More Strength. Endurance. Hope. Faithfulness.

….. because I want to be that mom who can connect with her kids, who is deeply empathetic, who isn’t operating to check off tasks but who can see and feel what can only be perceived with the heart to do for others what the Lord has done for her.

Love well, deeply, fully, intentionally, & forever.

What a process. So good though. Long but good. Painful but worth it. The things that are clicking now, I’m so grateful for.

Trusting the Lord with my heart in a way I wasn’t even aware I needed to feels good. And, safe. Which is what I aiming for this whole time.

Signature

they broke another lipstick

Disclaimer: If you’re looking for a warm and fuzzy-my children are perfectly & completely fantastic-I’m absolutely obsessed with them & motherhood post, don’t read any further & close this page out immediately.

Disclaimer: If you looked at my pic & thought “Why didn’t she do her hair?” or any other negative thought at this point, you should prob ‘x’ out, too.

I have quite a few thoughts on single motherhood/parenting that have been rolling around my mind that I’m working on finding the right words & ways to share…… this post is hardly scratching the surface of those thoughts. I’m sure with those expressed thoughts will come plenty of judgment out of true ignorance, but a ton of understanding from those who get it. And are feeling the same things silently & I’ve always wanted women who are in my space circumstances to feel a lot less alone.

So, I wrote about the frustration & thought process behind the (fifth-ish) broken lipstick.

Very few people outside of motherhood truly get motherhood, won’t even go there with understanding single motherhood. The paradoxes, idiosyncrasies of the role, the emotional load, the attention to detail it requires in all areas are often dismissed in a way that can easily make you feel small if you allow it. Many people try to give logical “solutions” to situations that are so much deeper & defy logic, human-ness, or anything that comes behind “why not just……” and obvious “have you tried…..” offers that make you chuckle.

Only a mother understands wanting/needing a break from your kids yet fights off the urge to snuggle & just watch them when someone comes to give us “the minute” we need to hit up the store (Target, Spec’s, wherever your car takes you that day), sit in silence parked in a lot around the corner, or even to your room to _______.

Only a mother would understand allowing tears to roll down your face when your prepping the diaper bag for the next day & notice that the toss in bag you put your things in has been rifled with & one of your favorite lipsticks is now broken. Because that is your favorite thing. It’s yours – even though you share it with your children. It’s something that allows you to be you. It helps to give you a more “put together” appearance, adds a little pop of color, makes you feel a little bit less like you’re just “_____’s mom”.

Because mamas have nothing for ourselves.

Boobs aren’t ours anymore.

Personal space a memory.

Privacy is done. Completely & utterly done.

That water in that bottle & food on your plate is mine if I can reach it.

Peaceful, enjoyable meals are impossible.

Loss is something that comes with the territory, but because it’s loss- it’s not always fun, welcomed, or enjoyed.

We are constantly too busy, pulled in too many directions, mentally/emotionally/physically whooped to even consider ourselves.

I share “it all” & willingly because I enjoy it. At the same time, very little is left for myself so I enjoy the little, easily accessible things ………. so I have lipstick. It’s one of those things I love deeply and “need”. If I’m leaving my house 9/10 I have on lipstick. It smoothes & softens the rough edges of that new mom/mom of many look. Lol. It’s the extra pop. I mean, earrings + lipstick are a must. Right?

You may be thinking, “It’s just lipstick. Get over it.” But, it’s not and I don’t mean that in a spoiled brat kinda way. It’s not JUST lipstick. Nothing is just anything anymore – not when everything that makes you you & that you enjoy is hard to come by, pushed to the back burner, dropped down on the list of priorities, or not often calendared…… because you’re a mama now. Understandable. Logical. Beautiful & at times lonely & painful.

At least for me.

And, still…… It’s not just lipstick.

It’s LIPSTICK.

The thing that my girls use to connect with me. To look like me. To make kissy faces with me. To primp in the mirror with me. To laugh with each other. It’s special. For me. So it’s special to them. (obvs a throw back!)

And, they’re literal pros at applying it.

Their intent isn’t to break it or destroy the things that matter most to me.

Their goal is to copy me. To look like me. To do that thing that connects to one another. So they can run up to me with a smile and kissy face saying “mama! Looook” with a wink.

(another throw back… they did their brows, too!)

Naturally, I’d want to share the things I love sharing with my girls. It almost intensifies my enjoyment. The fact that “my” thing is “our” thing makes my heart so happy. Lol. But the fact that they [unintentionally] break it, chaps my hide.

Kinda like how I love that they come into my bed in the middle of the night and snuggle. I love how you feel safe with me, but I’d really love to sleep comfortably without blocking kicks throughout the night.

Yes it hurts. Yes I’m sad. Yes it suuuuuucks because $$ allocated to replacing something we already had rather than getting something new annoys me and is a waste in my opinion. Don’t like to waste.

It’s perspective, right? Choosing to see multiple sides of a circumstance, the other perspective, giving benefits of the doubt….. and choosing to value an irreplaceable person than a thing.

At the end of the day, it’s just lipstick. So, please, don’t break it.

Signature

Just be….

Okay. So, our newest girl is nearly six whole weeks old!! A formal into & birth story is on its way, but in the meantime…. My favorite place is with them.

My favorite role is their mama.

My favorite faces to put a smile on.

My favorite people to experience new things with.

Watching them grow + being their mama has been an honor & privilege.

A blessed gift.

The best, most humbling compliments are surrounding how well I “mom”, how I seem to enjoy being a mother & with my girls, & how happy + peaceful I look. All of this is so true.(Photo by Rhyann!)

I’m told quite a bit that I make single motherhood look easy. It’s not. It’s lonely, it’s hard, it’s exhausting, & difficult. But, I love it. & thanks to an incredible God, their supportive dads, a solid support system, & a few supplements, I have the energy, emotional/mood balance, & health to enjoy raising these girls on all the days that make me both laugh & cry.

Do I want to be a single mama forever? Heck no, not even a little bit. Not only for my sake, but my girls’ benefit, too. There’s something powerful about having a solid, God fearing, loving & additional male role model not only in their lives, but in their home. An example of how well they should be loved by the way their mama is loved & how they should show respect by how their mama shows respect. How they both honor, serve, & communicate. Prioritize, laugh, play, disagree, forgive, etc. (photo by Logan!)

Until then, I am going to continue learning + practicing serving, loving, engaging, communicating with, & relating to each of the girls as they need. Skills that will help me to be a great mama, friend, sister, daughter, leader, teammate, team partner, ministry partner, etc and eventually a (gulp) wife.

Right now. Today.

I’m honored to “just” be a mama.

(Photo by Rhyann!)

Signature