the thoughts of a pregnant mom during a pandemic.

It’s been a hot minute since I’ve felt a burst of inspiration to sit down + write. Honestly, I think I have just been soaking in slow, small town living. Here goes…we’ve lived in Clinton, British Columbia for 5 months. I found out I was pregnant with our 3rd child 2 weeks before we got possession of our first home, talk about milestones! Since we have moved here, I would say from the extreme of our lifestyle in the lower mainland; I have essentially isolated myself. My 2 year old son + I head to strong start one day a week. Our average day is spent going for walks, playing in the backyard + watching more Netflix than I thought was humanly possible. I’ll blame morning sickness + pregnancy exhaustion for the “screen time” rules that flew out the window long ago.

We went back “home” to visit Langley for what we expected to be a week over spring break. We had plans with friends, family, day camps + swimming lessons set up. We arrived Sunday morning, at that time there was a travel advisory + all events over 250 people were cancelled. By Monday morning, the world was upside down. Shelves were cleared, business’ were closing their doors, groups of 10+ were told to meet with precaution + fear really set in. It’s easy to turn a blind eye until the chaos is happening in your own backyard…or toilet paper aisle. I was ready to head back to Clinton, a village of less than 600 people.

I am an easy going, go with the flow, take things as they come, “it will all work out” type of person for the most part. I wasn’t worried, I am still not really worried. I’ve had moments of fear or panic, so I signed out of social outlets for a time but even in the best of times, you feel like you’re “missing out” on the scrolling + constant updates or notifications. I stocked up on groceries this morning, more than I ever have, because quite frankly, we just don’t know what will come next.

The last 5 months of living in Clinton, away from the hustle, away from the conveniences, away from all friends + family, I have learned a lot. I’ve learned how I function best as a parent, I’ve learned how to adapt to parenting alone for 5 days out of the week without help or support. I’ve learned to put my phone down more often + listen to my kids…like really listen to the same stories over + over. I look them in the eye with my full attention as much as I can remember. In the last 5 days, I feel like a lot of what I’ve been practicing these past few months have came more at ease. I’m seeing the things to be grateful for, even if minuscule. I’m seeing the light in a dark + scary time.

I have a challenge for you (I’m doing it too!) over these next few days + weeks of slow + solitude:

– call your parents, call your grandparents if you can, Skype your people + tell them how much you stinkin’ love + cherish them.
– message every. single. person (not a business, because that might be weird) in your contact list on your smart phone + tell them you’re thinking of them, praying for them, ask them how they’re holding up.
– compliment every person you see + smile, we are all a little frightened + weary.
– read all those books you have collecting dust on your shelves, re-read a favourite.
– make a cup of tea, stop scrolling + listen to a podcast. my personal go-tos are the Real Life by Jefferson + Alyssa Bethke or Rise Together by Dave + Rachel Hollis.
– try a new recipe, try it with your kids because hey, you have the time now. we are in no rush.
– take the “me time” you’ve been craving, let your husband handle the kids, draw yourself a bubble bath with some candles, maybe a glass of pinot Grigio – have a glass or two for me!
– leave a review on your favourite restaurants yelp page.
– buy a gift card online from your fave local shop or cafe.
– wash your dang hands + be beyond grateful for your health.

I might be a minority but I hope school doesn’t go back, I am loving the slow. I am loving hanging out with my 6 year old, who will only be six once + I get to enjoy it! I am choosing to see the good in the bad right now, I’m choosing it daily, sometimes hourly. I’m trying to soak up every second with my husband + children before our new baby girl comes. I hope you can do the same, I can’t help but think of the busy dad who hasn’t sat down for breakfast with his kids on a weekday for years, I can’t help but think of the healthcare workers who are going home + self isolating because they’re out there in the trenches helping others, I can’t help but think of the stay at home mom who finally can be like “THIS, THIS is what we do all day”, I can’t help but think of the people who like I was for years, exhaustingly busy, feeling like I needed to do all the things, post all the things, BE all of the things. I can’t help but think of the other expecting mamas I know (currently 12 other close friends or family due in 2020) who are just praying their little cherub stays safe inside that cozy, warm womb. In awful circumstances, the earth is allowing us to slow, to see, to breathe, to reflect. Choose to see the light in the darkness, choose to BE the light in this darkness. Be kind, slow down + just BE.

a little under 400 square feet to a little under 4000 square feet.

We live in a 350 square foot 5th wheel trailer, we upgraded from a 1992 motor home that was about 200 square feet two days after my second son was born.

We house sat for the last 3 weeks in a home that sits at around 3800-4000 square feet, heck maybe even more. For the first 3 days my children did not leave my side. I thought I had cling ons before May 10th, but this was next level.

There’s many things I realized I missed about a conventional home. Having a bath (it had been over a year since a good candle lit soak), a dishwasher, a laundry machine, filtered water, the space for a king sized bed + a dining table. My son talked a lot about how cool it would be to have a house so we can have a dog.

There’s many things we all realized that we didn’t miss. So much house cleaning. I can thoroughly clean my tiny home in less than an hour. We arrived home yesterday afternoon + we all had sighs of relief. Living tiny is our norm, we’ve been doing it for nearly two years. We have grown to love being near to each other. Always.

We missed knowing where each item goes, because we don’t have space for clutter or too many “things”. I’m so grateful that we’ve been able to teach our children about the importance of each item, each book, holding on to items and letting items go. We’ve engraining in our children water + electricity consumption, because we’ve had to.

We chose to downgrade from a 1200 square foot (not even large in Canadian standards) townhome to a more simple, minimal way of living so that we could let our kids define their home by love, not by size. We could define a life by quality and not quantity. We didn’t want to be strapped to a mortgage or a rental because we wouldn’t be able to live the lifestyle we want: eating out, going to yoga classes, having personal trainers, vacations.

I’ll be grateful for this season once we move on, but for now, I love our tiny home. I love less walls between us. I love purging. I love living minimally. I love that we can hook our house up to a truck and go see the world.

raising a glass to all of the mamas out there.

Mothers Day weekend the church I attend always puts on an awe-inspiring, uplifting day to celebrate single moms. I was asked to speak, numerous times and I would shrug it off, I would let my friend know that I’d get back to her with an answer. Finally, after the third coffee date, she got a yes out of me. The weeks leading up, I kept feeling this voice over my shoulder saying I wasn’t good enough, I shouldn’t get up and speak in front of moms because I have no idea what I am even doing raising these humans. I got sick the Monday prior and thought I should for sure throw the towel in. I prayed before I went to bed that night, mostly for health but also to have my nerves settle a bit before Saturday afternoon.

I woke up and it felt like God revealed something to me, with a relief I realized that I was feeling like backing out because I didn’t feel worthy but I also reassured myself that I was asked for a reason and maybe if I can resonate with just one of the 100+ moms out there. I would be satisfied. With a croaky voice and aches and pains throughout my body, I walked up on to the stage where we would be doing the discussion interview style because being up there alone was too frightening for me, I was touching on some really vulnerable spots in my life.

We started off with an intro to who I am as a person, praises and triumphs to raising two boys in 350 square feet. I shared with the audience that I grew up with a single mom, who had me at 16 and when I was 10 months old my dad left my mom to meet his future wife not too long after. I wanted the women to know that I relate to them, that I too carry things around that feel too heavy most of the time. I touched on how I became a mom, how Cody came to us. I try to keep this story short and sweet because I feel like it’s not really my story to tell. I shared how it took us nearly a year to get pregnant with Odin.

I shared some dusty corners of post partum depression and anxiety, words that I feel shameful about having roll of my tongue but just like this blogging journey. I just want to touch one person, I want someone to read the lines or hear my words and say “me too” and for a second, don’t feel so alone. I shared how I yelled at my kids that morning and that I fail daily. I told them what works for me to get through this crazy life, joining a life group, meeting with moms who are in the same season as me, prayer, meditation and putting self care high on that priority list. You can’t pour from an empty cup right? I know that God is guiding me through all of this, I know that I can make the choice daily to lay my “stuff”, my shame, my anger, my judgements at Jesus’ feet.

I shared about mom shaming and how we need to come together to love each other. When I grew up, I was fortunate enough to grow up in a community of family and friends that embraced the “village” mentality. Now, I feel like its side eyes and snarky comments about who’s nursing, who’s formula feeding, etc. We need to love each other more. I shared that I try really hard to be intentional with my relationships and not just with my mom friends but that I love hard. We need to let love in and let others love us, most of us are too proud to ask for help but I learned quickly as I tried to keep my head above water in those early months with a newborn, I needed to accept meals, I needed to ask for prayer, I needed to accept the love someone was trying to shine on me.

I wanted the women to leave there knowing they are loved, that they’re strangers to me but I love them. I love their struggle, I love their chaos, I love their fears, I love their strengths. I love them like they are my dearest friend. I wanted to remind them to fill their cup, that they’re important too and that showing up that day proved that they were loving on themselves. I wanted them to arrive at their seat to hear me talk and know they deserved to be there and that putting one foot in front of each other to walk through the doors that morning was enough. Just them, as a mom, as a woman, as a daughter and a child of God, they’re enough.

At best, parenting is hard. It is exhausting, hilarious, joyful and the moments are fleeting. We blink and our kids are starting kindergarten, we blink and it’s the last time we rock them to sleep. We are all trying our best with what we know. When we put our feet on the floor in the morning because we woke to a cry, or hear little feet pitter pattering on the floor, in that moment, we are enough. We are so enough. Why? Because God picked you to be a mama to those babies and as tricky as it is some days. You’re rockin’ this mom thing, I just know it.

an open door policy: what hospitality means to me.

Growing up with a young, single mom, I often felt like I was shipped here and there because single moms not only do the 1,500 jobs at home but they also bring home the bacon too. Now as an adult who appreciates my childhood and strongly encourages an open door policy, I am learning more about myself and why I love this so much. As I open my door to others or offer meals or just share some company. I see the teachings of my First Nations family coming together to celebrate life or mourn death but always doing life together, I see my Czech grandma standing over a stove as she cooks your favourite meal while simultaneously offering you a baked good (or two), I see a pile of siblings and cousins of all ages around a table arguing over the last piece of bannock or piece of pizza.

I have always felt a craving for community. Although, I didn’t always fill that void in the right ways or the most appropriate social settings. In ways becoming a mom makes us busier than we’ve ever been. I often want to go back to my 24 year old self who thought she was exhausted and tell her “girl, you just wait!” For me, it slowed me down in ways I didn’t allow before. It allowed me to let my village, my community, my friends and family join around me in prayer, with meals, with love and encouragement.

“Build a longer table, not a higher fence”, some of my most favourite moments are watching my friends come together like a team as we chase each other’s kids around, sharing snacks, drinking tea + coffee. We share birth stories, tips to navigating this crazy mom life + robust belly laughs. We wipe each other’s kids noses, fill up sippy cups, and just share some of that good ol hospitality (it’s more fun if you say that last part in a Southern accent)

Let others love you, accept the invite to the bbq or the birthday of the friend of a friend you’ve met once. Drop by Grandma’s house more often. Invite the moms from church over. Whatever it looks like for you. If you’re like me and you look around at your tiny, chaotic mess of a home but are craving community, just open your door and let love in.

working mom club.

I had been a stay at home mom for nearly two years and going back to work was honestly one of the greatest decisions I’ve made in awhile. Eric and I prayed, discussed and decided it was best for our family if he stayed home Fridays with the kids and he was always home Saturday’s anyways. We wanted the children to be with mom or dad as much as possible.

I knew I would enjoy the “break” and I loved being back at work, having adult conversation beyond teething, husbands and my lack of sleep. It felt good to contribute to our savings account and take the load off of my husband a bit.

I loved being able to go to the bathroom without someone banging and crying on the door, or better yet, in there with me.

I loved being able to have a glimpse of who I was before kids and realizing, I am someone else besides mom. In the moments of meeting a friend for happy hour or enjoying lunch on a patio on my lunch.

I sacrificed many days away from my children, (we don’t give dads enough credit for this, it’s hard!) It wasn’t often but when I came home after they’ve gone to bed and I would look at their precious little faces. I would wonder what I missed during the day, I would see their laughter, I would see their joy from that day and I would be crushed that I missed that.

I’m grateful I can choose to stay home while my husband goes and works his butt off to provide for us. I’m grateful I have a husband who supported the tug on my heart when I wanted to go back to work. I knew I would be leaving my job for a time to travel Canada this summer. Saying bye to being a working mom came as a bit of a harder hit than I anticipated, the choice made me realize that in these next few months I am going to thrive to figure out what is next for this mama. You can raise amazing humans AND have a passion with goals that set your heart on fire too.

My little people, you come first. I’m grateful I got to fuel my passion, meet some amazing crew and customers. My heart is full to know that you were able to see a glimpse of ambition and I feel so excited to think of what is in store for me next but it’s also bursting knowing we get to make heaps of memories travelling around this summer and that I get to tuck you in every night and kiss your soft, little foreheads.

the things I did not know before mom life

Our sweet boy Cody came to us February 2016, he was a little over two years old and we jumped right into bottle weaning, potty training and an exuberantly energetic state of parenthood. We had no idea about this world, truthfully, I still have no idea what the heck I am doing. We are rockin’ it as well as we can as parents of two small boys, we are nearing the world of night weaning and potty training again.

Out of all of the things that hit us by surprise as you keep small humans alive was this space of mom shaming and deep senses of guilt. Mostly me, since I am with our kids most of the time and there are huge double standards for what mom does and what dad does. Parenting is hard, but even harder when it seems to be the easiest thing to have an opinion and pass judgement about.

I didn’t know people would be so concerned with what my children eat, is it organic, is it breast milk, is it formula? We don’t ask moms of teens what they feed their kids or shame them for letting their sons eat pizza for 4 years in a row.

I didn’t know I would be stared at because I breastfeed my toddler (without a cover! oh no!) but in the first 12 months you’re praised for giving your child the golden brew

I didn’t know I would feel pressure to follow my kid around the playground like he’s a known shoplifter instead of letting him climb and play freely. If we are putting labels on it, we are absolutely free-range parents and I’ll accept the glares any day

I didn’t know you would feel guilt for staying at home and “doing nothing all day” or guilty for loving going back to work and “having a break”. How dare you birth children AND have passions that fire your soul up!

I didn’t know I would feel the urge to apologize on behalf of my kids lack of voice volume control, active body parts or anything else that is normal child behaviour. Embrace your little ones, they’re small for a short time, don’t shrink them to fit someone else’s space.

I didn’t know bed sharing, “extended feeding”, never putting your baby down, etc was considered alternative, “attachment” parenting and I would be told I am spoiling my children

I didn’t know that I would have so many side eyes, I didn’t know there would be so much unsolicited advice, I didn’t know I would cry at night because I felt so much shame and guilt for thinking “I could have been better today”

What I do know is that this is a hard, exhausting and fleeting time. New parents are tired. All parents are tired. Parenting is terrifying. We are trying so hard to do the right things in our exploding hearts for our little mini(s) so the last thing a mom needs at a stay and play is to have another MOM scoff at you because your kid has juice in your sippy cup or because they’re 5 and still in your bed. I could go on, for-ev-er but you’ve been there mama, we all have.

We are supposed to be a team here ladies, to lift each other up, to give a smile at the grocery store as you carry your toddler out like a surfboard. Be the village, offer a meal, offer a kids swap (not for keeps of course). For myself I usually judge when I am coveting something I don’t have or I am uneducated on the situation. Think about that.

We are all coasting along, so please stay in your own lane, unless you’re pulling over to offer help.

the whirlwind year of too many firsts to count.

January 1st 2016 my husband and I moved to Langley from North Vancouver. We were very newly married (3 months) and within 8 weeks of moving into a new city we became parents over night to a beautiful two year old boy. As I adjusted to a new community, new friends and mom life, I was also transitioning from being an esthetician into a manager role.

Time flies by and before we knew it, July had rolled around and Eric left for his annual helicopter work in Northern B.C. and Northern Alberta. Between July and December that year my husband was home for a total of 72 hours. We had just become parents and had been trying half a year to get pregnant, I was managing a staff that challenged me daily. Life was full. This is where You came in, more than I ever knew You before.

When I would lay in bed at night, feeling scared of what the next day held, letting the shame set in of what I could have done better with my son. I talked to You. You reassured me that I’m trying my best and to give myself some grace.

When I would thank you for Cody but feel frustrated we didn’t get pregnant before Eric left for work. I talked to You. You reassured me of your timing and Your plan, which I’ve learned often doesn’t align with ours.

When I wanted to flirt with someone in the line at Starbucks, I would pray for myself and my husband quietly in my head. I talked to You. You reassured me that quick fixes were answers of the past.

When I felt impatient with my growth, bitter towards my past and anxious about my future. I talked to You. You reassured me that I wasn’t alone, that You love me and you don’t want me to have those feelings.

When I would feel Satan trying to put resent in my heart towards my husband for choosing a passion that took him away from the home. Did I ever talk to You! You helped me to forgive my husband and to be patient with him.

I put You at the centre of everything.

Later that year I attended an alpha course (two times in a row, I highly recommend!) During our “one day retreat” as people shared their testimonies I realized that earlier that year during our Easter service as I took communion for the first time was when I became a Christian. I asked You to show up, to be the centre of our lives, to show me this unconditional love everyone talks about. I struggled with this part, I would sit in church and be so hung up on God loving me like his own child. My dad left my mom when I was 10 months old and I didn’t grow up in the most conventional home so you could see where my resistance was.

As I reflected on 2016, on the growth, change, hardships and triumphs I didn’t know how I could have done it without my church community, without my Lifegroup, without Sunday morning services, without prayer, without You. I would have sought for comfort in places I wouldn’t have been proud of. I would have resorted to feelings of bitterness and anger that felt so comfortable and easy to me. I would have lost my cool on my child more times than I care to admit. I talked to You.

Having a good and gracious God does not mean your life will be easy, becoming a Christian doesn’t make you perfect. My life often feels hard, I often question God and feel frustrated towards him. My life is far from perfect and I am far from perfect. I struggle with sin often, I struggle with gossip, quick fixes and anger. I struggle with anxiety, doubt and bitterness. With prayer, like minded friends and a God who loves and forgives, I am able to practice grace, deep gratitude, ease, patience a sense of community and selflessness.

The whirlwind year of too many firsts to count. I could not have done it without You.

work, life and not so much balance.

I heard recently on a podcast that it’s okay if life isn’t always “balanced”, as much as we are always striving to make it appear or be like that. This has made me realize that we are never really quite balanced, or at least I am definitely not. Sometimes we are more wife, sometimes we are more mom, sometimes we are more work, sometimes we are more fit, sometimes we are more Netflix and couch.

bal·ance

/ˈbaləns/

noun

1 1.
an even distribution of weight enabling someone or something to remain upright and steady.

I’m not sure I’ve been upright and steady since I became a wife or parent and absolutely wasn’t in my early 20s. I’m not a structured person and I like to “do all of the things”, I enjoy a mild amount of chaos and “busyness”. I really don’t think balance is the right term we are looking for here when we talk about being a working mom or stay at home mom or for anyone, there’s so much pressure. We can’t possibly fit it all in, be balanced and do it all amazingly, all while in your white kitchen with your cute romper that fits perfectly because you hit yoga + spin 5 times a week, with your beautifully blown out hair. I am by no means bashing “that” mom AT ALL! I do many of those things. I get a blow out once a month, just because. I’m just saying, doing “all of the things” is stinkin hard!

har·mo·ny

/ˈhärmənē/

noun

1 1.
the combination of simultaneously sounded musical notes to produce chords and chord progressions having a pleasing effect.

Let’s go with this synonym of balance, it sounds way better to me. I’m going to input my own words, “the combo of simultaneously choosing things while also taking what life throws at you to have a pleasing effect”. Some days are more harmonious than others, regardless of if you’re staying home raising humans or working full time. Some days we have “balance”.

Some days I cook a nice Pinterest dinner, most days it’s a meal from a food prep company or we grab fast food.

Some days I am productive while my baby naps, most days I nap too or watch Netflix.

Some days I am patient after work and can’t wait to smooch my boys and husband, most days I make my husband put them to bed so it’s one less thing and then pass out immediately myself.

Some days I wake up early, drink my coffee in silence while doing my bible journaling, joking, I just wish I did that.

Some days I make a smoothie as a late night snack, most days I have a glass of Pinot Grigio and whatever salty treat I can find in my cupboards.

Through this wild ride of parenting and doing life with another adult human. I’ve learned to just smile and accept, give yourself grace and a daily reminder that God’s got you girl. The chaos and years are short and for myself, it’s easier to accept that my house may not be clean for YEARS, I may not make a gourmet meal most nights, it may be awhile until I wear sexy panties again. Our life is harmonious for the most part and we are finding parts that work well for us, we’ve found routines that fit for us and some that don’t. We don’t put a lot of pressure on ourselves as parents, husband or wife. We are surviving, loving and living in harmony…as much as we can.

self care with two minis at home

Self care

It’s not all pedicures and happy hours with friends. Sometimes it’s just resting and saying no. I have always loved those pampering type things. I’ve taken self care and self love very seriously ever since I became a mom but even more so as I was battling post partum depression and anxiety.

As a mom of young kids, when you really don’t have another choice but to put your kids first because you shame yourself if you do or you’re just too stinkin’ tired. I get it, but when I switched gears and put myself on that priority list, it was a game changer. Self care looks so different for everyone, it’s different in each season but it’s always important. You are important. Often we shove our needs aside to please others, because we’ve glamorized “being busy” or because we think we have to do something that costs money. Trust me, I love a good spa day with Prosecco included and I often do those things if finances and sitters are available to me.

◦ I also love the free things too or things after my babes go to sleep. My husband works 12 hour days usually and often out of town. I work 3 days a week, so getting a sitter to go get a pedicure isn’t always on my radar. But I’ll make a point of putting my phone down during baby naps and take that nap too, read a book instead, listen to a podcast, do an online workout or yoga video. In those months of feeling depressed, scrolling endlessly through people’s highlight reels, didn’t help me with my self love, I’ll say that!

You’re going to think I am cheesy but affirmations, saying things over and over makes you believe them. It’s science, I think! So instead of, “I’m not good enough”, “I’m a terrible mom”, “I’m too tired” day in and day out. Try waking up and whispering to yourself or as you brush your teeth, “I can make a choice today to care for myself”, “I’m tired but I’m going to choose to ______ today” and if it’s “I am tired and I’m going to leave my dirty dishes and nap with my baby today”. Heck yes! Do that, that’s one of my favourite things to do, look at my mess and think that’s nice, it’ll be there later.

For me this year, 2019, the year my babies will turn 2 and 6. They still need me so much but I also need me. So I’ve been mindful of what I can do to be a better mom, wife and person. Often it’s facials, getting my hair blown out and happy hours with friends, often it’s a yoga class, meditating or a quiet walk along the river. However, these days it’s often been choosing what and who I commit my time to. Choosing to be passionate about something but still saying no, because ultimately it may not serve my life and will take away from my kids. Choosing to cut out or limit my time with negative/toxic people, people I’ve outgrown or nonchalantly just don’t have time for because I am raising two humans that in the kindest way possible are sucking all of the things out of me.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, fill your cup, fill it so it overflows, so you can fill theirs too and I’m not just referring to your kids. Fill your cup so you can fill your husbands cup, your friends, your whole dang village.

when the 4th trimester feels like it will last a lifetime: my post partum journey

Most of us feel guilty even on the best of days, “did I say I love you enough today?”, “I shouldn’t have yelled at my kids”, “maybe I should’ve read another book like he asked”. We’ve all had those thoughts. It took awhile for me to realize that my thoughts and feelings weren’t “normal” and I wasn’t feeling like myself or acting like the mom I wanted to be. Odin was about 2 months old when I realized the feelings that had been creeping up since his birth weren’t quite right and these feelings continued on for more days, weeks and months than I’d like to admit before I reached out to a counsellor, before I became an advocate for my own self care and self love.

“I’m such a shitty mom”, “I should just get in the car and leave, they would be so much better off without me”, “this baby is a stranger and I don’t like being his mom”. I didn’t want to die, I didn’t want to hurt my baby but when those thoughts spiralled, I felt like I wanted to escape the endless cycle of nursing, rocking, waking, crying. With a lump in my throat as I type, I hated this time that was meant to be “wonderful and magical”. When you are walking through post partum anxiety and depression, the thoughts are so irrational and scary but completely out of your control. It lies to you about what kind of mom and wife you are and it robs you of your joy.

I never thought it was magical, was I grateful? Did I praise God? Oh heck ya, but when the anxiety or PPD kicked in. I was a different person. The scary part is, as I talk about it now as a mom of a 16 month old, people say they had no idea. Mental health issues aren’t exposed, we fight them inside.

It’s an absolutely beautiful gift to be a parent, we wished, chose, tried for a year and prayed for these boys but in that first year, I often wondered why. I wondered why mothers continued to do it over and over again. I wondered why God would give me an incredibly challenging baby and sprinkle post partum depression on my journey too.

Post partum depression and anxiety is terrifying. It eats at you and in those late hours as you hear your husbands faint breath beside you while a beautiful baby is snuggled into your boob as you give him life, it’s bittersweet. It’s astonishingly amazing, beyond words but it’s raw (the nipples too!), it’s hard and exhausting. You’ve became a new person and feel like you’ll never be that woman before pregnancy. It’s lonely, I have a village and a half, a rockstar husband and friends who love my boys as much as I do but in those hours, through those many wakings. I felt alone, scared and shameful. “How could I hate this?”, “What a monster I must be”, “What is wrong with me?”

It’s okay to not love every second of this parenting thing and it’s okay if you do think it’s your calling and the most magical thing in the world. Its absolutely okay to leave your dishes piled up and to not “have it all together”, but it’s so not okay to put yourself (physically, mentally, spiritually + emotionally) as #25 on the list of priorities. I’m the advocate for my kids health and wellbeing, so why shouldn’t I do the same for ourselves? It’s hard to dig yourself out of the trenches, hard to push the lies and demons aside, brush your teeth and get up out of bed, I get it but mama, let those feet hit the floor each morning knowing that God chose you to be those kids mama. He wants you to take care of yourself, so that you can take care of them. Reach out for help, get a sitter, take the meds, do yoga, quiet your mind somehow, take the nap with your baby (the dishes will be there when you wake up), do what you have to do to survive those fleeting, amazing years with your small human(s).

Fill your cup, so it’s overflowing, fill your cup so you can fill theirs.