Wednesday, February 25, 2015

• That Little Voice •

It will always live with me I'm afraid. It won't go away, I can't bury it. It's just there. 

I've never been incredibly open about my disordered eating in high school. I am not sure if it's the embarrassment of having open imperfections in a perfect world, or if it's just that I can't admit I had a problem that should have been addressed.

I remember it starting in my sophomore year. I have always loved dancing & when I became a member of our school drill team I was dancing all the time. For some reason that's when it really hit me that you shouldn't (one of the many lies this voice told me) be fat & trying to dance. I would just skip a meal every few days, nothing to serious. It became daily I was skipping & gradually it became days I was skipping. Looking back now I'm surprised I lasted. I remember getting really shaky all the time. I think the peak of this disease was my senior year. I started having anxiety & when I had to get a little bigger dance outfits, I panicked. It was like my life was falling apart & that's when the bulimia started. It didn't last long it just wasn't my thing. Eating all of that food all at once made me feel horrible. 

I started dating my husband in the middle of my bulimia struggle. He lived an hour away & I would drive almost every weekend. From the get go I felt like he needed to know my eating struggles. Not because I wanted to trap him into feeling bad for me but I had that gut feeling that he'd stay no matter what relationship we had. Little did I know he already knew, one of the girls on my drill team was friends with his ex-gf, they made him think I was this crazy girl who had this horrible disease. This felt like such a defeat to me that someone who I thought was such a good friend would say something so rude about me. That night we went out to eat with some friends, I ended up being told everything & coming back to throw up. I felt so terrible I did the very thing that makes me the crazy one. I thought I was being "sneaky" doing it while everyone went out for a smoke break, they came back & I was caught. My husband got so mad, he punched the door. That was the last time I've seen him that mad & the last time I made myself puke. 

I moved to Pocatello to go to school & things got pretty serious. Looking back now, I feel this was the thinnest I've ever been. 

I thought it was great. And if I'm being downright honest, some days I wish I could look like that again. I hurt myself so much & at that same time I was proud. Proud of my discipline, proud of my hard work, proud of the compliments I received for such a great body. 

That's the problem with eating disorders, they will destroy you when you are receiving the most praise for things you never realized how much you care about. 

There are some people who think my eating disorder is not an eating disorder. 
• I had multiple kids - eating disorders ruin that chance. 
• I was never hospitalized - eating disorders make you pass out, anemic, dehydrated, ruin your heart or esophagus. 
• I was never under 100 lbs - eating disorders mean you weigh like 80 lbs. 

There are so many doubters that think they see the models & the girls who have some of the most severe cases I've ever seen. They compare those of us who struggle day to day but push through the pain to conquer that voice. I hear that voice every time I change my clothes, every time I'm in bed with my husband, every time I look in the mirror, & every time I try to tell myself how strong I am. 

I have to tell myself constantly that I am enough. 
I am enough to be a good wife. 
I am enough to be an amazing mom. 
I am enough to be honest & to be an advocate for every single person who is struggling. 

I have a lot working against me, ED, PPD, & Anxiety. But I also have a lot more going for me, 4 little boys who love me no matter what, a husband who loves me unconditionally, my family & my husbands family who will do anything to help. 


These are my biggest fans!!! They will be here no matter what! 

Sunday, February 15, 2015

• What If I Can't Enjoy Every Moment •

It's that look I get from complete strangers when they see us with four boys. That, "oh wow you have four boys, enjoy every moment it goes so quickly," comes up & I just nod my head & smile. 

Here’s the thing: I do enjoy this. I do look forward to those snuggling moments. I was the mama rocking her newborn at 3:00am reminding myself to do that very thing: to memorize the ten tiny pounds on my chest, the entire hand that wrapped around my one finger. 

I pay attention to every single moment.  I am aware of the minutes that somehow turn into days, weeks & years, and I love those moments because they define our family.

What about those moments that are hard? What about those minutes you do not cherish and the days that are not precious? What do those criticizing strangers say about those?

Like this weekend when my 7, 5, & 3 year olds would not listen, would not stop tattletaling & would not stop fighting. To top it off I was also dealing with my 1 year old, who has had double ear infections for what I can only bet is 2 months, screaming & clinging to my leg every time I stopped for two seconds. I had finally had enough when two of the three fought & pushed one into the innocent third one knocking him into the bed only to his head. I shut their doors, went into my room & I screamed ," I'm done with you, and promptly shut myself in our bedroom drinking Mt. Dew until I regained my sanity.

Or when we were at Winco & they were fighting over who had to get in & who was holding the sides of the grocery cart, that they ran into the people in front of them, while I was getting something off a shelf, & we got that "take care of your out of control kids" look.

Or during a day that I had gotten 1 hour of sleep the night before & my nerves & anxiety had reach its capacity and I was confronted with two completely demanding toddlers and I screamed Can’t you just go take care of yourself for awhile?!

Or the time that my 5 year old put a hot wheels car in the microwave and pushed start. It started on the microwave on fire & he blamed it on his 3 year old brother. 15 minutes later he copped up to it & you wonder if all that talking about lying & truth telling even made a difference with him. 

What about those moments that are just hard? What do we do then? Is it really even feasible to enjoy those?

Those moments when you feel like a failure of a mother. When you feel like you did not love them nearly as much or you ignored their needs far to much. When your patience slipped, when your words made them tear up & run away. 

But here’s the thing about moments: they have this way of moving. They tick and they flash and they creep by. Every single one of them. These moments are going to happen whether we want them to or not, whether we are ready for them or not. Some are going to be easier to enjoy than others, some are going to sting more than others, some will be more precious than others.

We are trying so very hard to not miss these moments because in our heart of hearts we know that the advice is true: time does fly, moments do pass, we should enjoy these moments. We know that time works on its own schedule, speeding up when we want it to slow down and crawling by when we need it to fly.

But here’s the thing: we’re not going to enjoy every moment. We’re just not. Because being a mama is hard. It just is.

So to the exhausted mamas and the new ones and the barely surviving ones and the sick ones and the obsessive ones and the ones at the end of her rope and the ones surviving on caffeine, forget about trying to enjoy every moment. It will be one more thing you feel like is one of those building blocks of mothrhood. 

Here’s what you need to know instead: you already are a good mother. You love your kids fiercely, and that is what counts.

So what if we reframe the word enjoy? What if instead of trying to enjoy every single moment, we lean into them instead?  What if we learn from those rough patches & be strong. It is an act of bravery in affirming that you are more than the sum of your terrible minutes. It is an act of courage to dig deep into each and every moment even if there are a few thorns.

And so now, when I am confronted with the whining and the bickering and the exhaustion and the worry and the fears threatening to take over, I will look for something new. I will look for what I can embrace within the moment: the chocolate staining her cheek from when she snuck a bite of cookie, new words like appetizer and ridiculous that she tries on for size even though they completely don’t fit, the other one’s new favorite skill of climbing up the frame of the door frames or even just maybe try to laugh instead of cry at how terribly out of control the day has gone.

Because I want to know that I lived completely whole. I want to know that my boys are offered everything, whether it makes a mess or not. Even through these little years that can be so very exhausting. Even through moments that threaten my very sanity. Even then.

And so the next time someone tells you to enjoy this just as you are about ready to scream at somebody, simply smile and say “I will.” And then with every ounce of courage within you: don’t let the hard day win, look for one teeny tiny moment you can grasp within all the crying and screaming & just embrace motherhood and all it entails. 

Saturday, February 14, 2015

• An Intense Feeling Of Deep Affection •

I met him in one of the situations that you're parents always warn you about. We first began talking on MYSPACE. I was a senior in high school & he was a freshman in college. I, then, decided to meet face to face & he was nice enough to meet me in public setting. None other than a football game. His love! I decided he was "safe" (ha ha), we went back to his apartment to hang out for a bit! It became a weekend thing! My best friend at the time began to date one his good friends as well, so it was nice to go with someone! 

  I started to fall in love with this guy. He was that hot college boy that I bragged to all my friends about. I started sharing things that I wouldn't tell just anyone & we met each other's families. That's a huge step to me & little did I know I'm the only one he brought back to meet his parents beside his high school girlfriend! After that I got busy with drill team competition, senior projects & keeping up in school! We grew apart for a few months. Apparently we couldn't forget each because by my birthday we were talking again & he celebrated my high school graduation with me! 

I moved to Pocatello in August of 2007. Kameron debuted in December! It was a shock to say the least, but what I thought was love was nothing until I seen him hold Kam. He is thee most amazing dad ever. 

We have been through so much together! 

Top 10 Reasons I Love Him

1. He makes me laugh EVERY SINGLE DAY!
2. He never goes a day without complimenting me.
3. We have so many things in common. 
4. He loves his boys more than anything. 
5. He goes to work 40+ hours/week to take care of us!
6. He understands almost every thing about me, I'm just a little crazy! 
7. He is rooting for me 100% while I'm trying to find my old, happy self again! 
8. Days off with him are something I look forward too & sometimes I look forward to him going back to work! Ha jk
9. He is brutally honest. It's hard to hear sometimes, but he would never lie to make me feel better. 
10. He is gorgeous! 

Happy Valentines to my love! I have no idea what I would do without you! You are my rock. You lift me up when I'm at my lowest. We have survived some toughies! I love you so much!! 

Monday, February 9, 2015

•Facing Life: Motherhood Envy•

There are plenty of right and wonderful reasons to have a baby, but let me tell you having a baby so you feel like you fit in with those around you is not one of them.  I've spent the past year filled with this down right envy of all things motherhood.  Part of me isn't even sure I can actually put into words how I've been feeling, but I'm going to try so bear with me dear readers.
Living away from family is never easy.  It's even harder when both you and your husband are total introverts that generally gravitate to people who are at least 5-10 years old than we are.  While it's already hard to make friends as an adult (please tell me I'm not alone in this), throw in what I mentioned above and it seems nearly impossible.  So when every other couple we met, that we felt like we got along with, had at least one child, it just seemed like the logical thing to do to have baby (yes as I type that I know it sounds crazy).
It didn't help that I spend my days with an almost 2 year old, so from 9-5 I have lots of mom like experiences, both the good and the bad.  Since my brain was pretty baby focused, I tended to connect with groups that had lots of younger moms in them.  I saw their motherhood struggles, and could offer a little advice, but who wants mothering advice from a non-mom?  There was so much I could relate to, but at the same time couldn't relate at all.  There are tough days as a nanny, but at the end of them I get to leave.  While I don't sleep great, I still never have to worry about a baby waking up and needing me.  I wanted those motherhood struggles though, I saw the way these other moms bonded over them, and I just so badly wanted to be in on that. 
I'm a nanny right, how hard could it be to be a mom?  I got the chance to find out when Michael and I watched the little guy for a week.  I mentioned this before, but that week was so unbelievably hard.  Even with all it's toughness, I'm so thankful we had that week.  I felt the struggle first hand, and I was not ready for it.  More importantly, God knew I wasn't ready for this, I was just too baby laser focused to listen. 
I have this horrible habit of getting so focused on an idea, which in theory is usually a God-pleasing idea, that I just assume that is what God wants for me.  God used this week to shake me out of my selfish desire for a baby right now.  It is rare for me to really feel like God is speaking to me, and usually when He does it needs to be super loud, well I got the message.  Wanting motherhood because you assumed it would be easier to make friends, means you are not ready to become a mother. 
We all have different timelines for parenthood (if ever), but I cannot spend so much time being jealous of mothers that I neglect the life I have.  Before we have a baby of our own, I want our marriage to be strong, and more importantly I want to be strong, mentally, physically, and spiritually, so this baby can be loved like no other.  

Lisa is a 20 something born and raised Northerner now living in the Deep South with her Southern husband.  She spends her days as a nanny to a 2 year old, priding herself on her ability to sing along to all the songs on Daniel Tiger and Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. When not working, she loves to do all things crafty, though they usually turn into major Pinterest fails. You can follow her at the following: 

I know Lisa will be reading your comments, please stay positive. Thank you Lisa for being so willing to be my first post!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

• Facing Life: Meeting My Diabetic Baby •

When I was pregnant with Peyton, I had that feeling that he was my last. I tried to enjoy every single part of it, but for the first 3.5 months I was sick. It got better & my the end I had gained a good 45 lbs! Little did I know that 45 lbs was just going to be on me. Peyton was delivered at 38 weeks. He came tiny, but fighting! You can read about his birth here

From day one I wondered what I could have done different. There were so many moments sitting in the NICU thinking about the things that could go wrong. 6q24 Transient Neinatal Diabetes Mellitus is one of the scariest phrases I've ever heard to describe my baby. Here is some information about it. My grandpa has Type 2 Diabetes. All I knew before Peyt was that my grandpa couldn't have to many candy bars or he would be sick. I compared Peyton to a roller coaster a lot in the NICU. His glucose levels were out of control. Low one minute, high the next, leveled out to normal & then he'd spike or drop again. It was always a small victory if we could stay within his range two or three times in a row. If babies could talk, I tried to imagine what Peyton would say. Would he cry "ow" every time they pricked his little heel? Would he scream " mommy,daddy don't leave me" every time we walked out that door to our 2.5 hour drive home? Would he be able to know the difference in a high & a low to tell the nurses how he was feeling? 

I had a lot of time to think sitting & rocking my baby or coming home without a newborn. I had a hard time getting to sleep every night without him. I would call to check on him every single night & tell the nurse to give him an extra squeeze for me through a couple tears. That never faded away. Even when I brought him home I would kiss him before I laid him down & got teary eyed sometimes.

When I would walk into his NICU room, it was like a piece of my heart was returned. I never felt whole because my other boys weren't with me. The day I felt whole again was April 22, 2014. We brought Peyton home & I was extremely nervous. I was so excited to know he was healthy enough to come home, but hopeful & praying that we would have no emergencies. 

We made it 3.5 months with monogenic diabetes & survived! Luckily for me Peyton was on specific amounts of formula so I never needed to count grams of sugar & all that. The poking, the final 3 heartbeats in the 3 seconds waiting for his meter to read, was worth it. He is a healthy & striving baby boy! 

I have learned so much from this boy, patience mainly! I had no idea what stress was until this boy came along. He is demanding & usually gets what he wants. Which means mama holds him a lot. I have learned time management, anytime he lets me put him down to play I hurry & get a room cleaned. I have to or my house would be a wreck! 

He turned 1 year old today & is my hero! He is 1 of 24 in the world with his condition. He's pure heaven! 


Your mommy and daddy love you forever! We hope you continue to fight in life & be the tough & strong person we know you are capable of being! 

• Facing Life Guidelines •

First, thank you for your interest in this series. I have never done a series like this but I have also never had a trying year until 2014. I vowed to be an advocate for postpartum depression, PTSD, & special needs babies. Please read my introductory post 
Facing Life: Meeting My "Diabetic" Baby

Here are the guidelines I'd like you to follow. Any questions I can be contacted at my email below or if your FB friends, message me! 

1) If you incorporate your faith into your piece, try to make it general. Many of the readers will be of different faiths, please be sensitive to that. 

2) Length can be a tricky one. I want you to be comfortable enough to share all of your stories and thoughts, but the more to the point you are the better. The goal is to keep the readers interested. 

3) Please email your piece to, along with a recent family photo. If you don't have extras to add, it's ok. If you do have some & know where you want them place,do so & I will post it like that. 

4) I have chosen Facing Life as the series title. Please title your email Facing Life: (your triumph/struggle) ex: Facing Life: Meeting My "Diabetic" Baby. 

5) I would like the last paragraph to be something you've learned along the way of your struggle. Whether it be something about yourself or a way you've learned to cope. 

6) And lastly I would like for you to include all social media links & a small 5-7 sentence bio with a recent family photo! 

This is not a paying job. It is strictly to be personal, raw & real. I want others to know they are not alone. I love reading posts that I can relate to & feeling the emotions they go through. We are a lot stronger than we know. It takes people that know how we feel to lift us up. 
**Update** I've had a lot of people ask if it needs to be new or a previously written post. I need new pieces. If it's previously read, it's not going to reach as many people. 
Thursday, February 5, 2015

•The Liebster Award Round 2•

Ahh!!! Another nomination for The Liebster Award, I am so beyond honored & excited that sweetheart Ali at Unrefined Sweet Life loved our blog enough to nominate us!! Thank you!!

I hope I gave different answers than my other post! :/ So enjoy... 

Questions From Ali

1.  Why did you start blogging?
I love to scrapbook but the journal can't always provide the whole story. When I started blogging it was only the big things that we did as a family. Now it's all about our every day lives!
2.  Since beginning your blog, what has been your biggest success?
My biggest succes has been the last month, I began to write from the heart with encouragement from 2 FB groups! They have showed me everyone goes through similar problems! 
3.  Congratulations! You’ve won $5,000 on a scratch off ticket. How will you spend your winnings?
Redo by bathroom or parts of my basement! 
4.  What is your favorite book? Safe Haven Why?
I love Nicholas Sparks! He writes with something I can imagine in my head & it lets me zone out of my crazy boy mama life. 
5.  Describe your style. What are 5 pieces that you think everyone should have in their closet? 
I'm definitely a jean & T-shirt kinda girl!! I think every girl should have a pair of comfy jeans that you can dress up to go out or dress down for a day at home, a pair of black leggings, a cute dolman top, flats to match, & flip flops!!
6. What is your guilty pleasure movie and snack?  
Definitely Burlesque, only because I secretly wish I could do that!! My snack would be Little Debbie Zebra Cakes & Mt. Dew!
7.  If you were making the perfect ice cream sundae, what would it consist of? 
Layered from bottom to top: Brownie, Sliced Bananas, caramel, cookies & cream ice cream, caramel & a maraschino cherry on top!
8.  In a box of 96 crayons, what color would you be? What is the name of the color? (i.e. Macaroni & Cheese Orange) 
Cerulean Blue
9.  Name three things that help get you through the day.
1. Mt. Dew
2. Instagram
3. My boys
10. What is your signature dish to bring to a get-together/party?
Acini De Pepi Salad! We know it as Frog Eye Salad!
11.  Name one milestone (goal) for your blog that you’d like to reach in 2015.
I am hoping to get a series called "Facing Life" started soon! Everyone knows that life is hard & there are lots of people that go through the same thing & my hope is that people can connect through the blog posts. 

Eleven Random Facts 

(1) When I'm stressed or upset to keep from crying I bite my bottom lip. Sometimes so much it bleeds. 

(2) I am the oldest of 3 kids. 1 brother 1 sister

(3) I met my husband on MySpace.

(4) I own a Dodge Grand Caravan! Yup I'm a minivan mom!

(5) When all of my kids are in school, I would like to start a daycare in town.... 5 years down the road!

(6) I've never received a speeding ticket.

(7) I have only dyed my hair once & it was horrid. I will never do it again. I will keep my dark brown! 

(8) Dance was my life in High School, I would love to get back into it. 

(9) We were married only 3 short months before I got pregnant & I'm kinda sad we didn't have longer! God does what needs to happen. 

(10) I started hunting when I was 12. I had to stop when I got pregnant because I was 8 months along when the season came around. My dad didn't want to deliver my baby on the mountain. My husband took over that job!!

(11) I have 1 husband, 3 sons & 1 step-son, 1 Daniff (Great Dane/Mastiff) & 1 Mini-Dachshund 

April at Our Little Loves

Jenn at Good Luck Jenn

Jennifer at A Glimpse Of Our Life

Elizabeth at Chasin' Mason

11 Questions For My Nominees! 
1. Are you a dog or a cat kinda person?
2. What are you most afraid of?
3. Favorite reality show?
4. Best childhood memory.
5. Go to drink or treat when your feeling down about your day? 
6. If your house caught on fire & you could grab 5 things what would they be? 
7. How did you meet your significant other? 
8. You win $500 million, if you would, your choice of donations would be where? 
9. Easiest thing about being a mom/wife? 
10. Hardest thing about being a mom/wife?
11. Who has influenced your life the most & why? 

Thank You again Ali! I'm so excited to have other people love our blog as much as we do!