You Are Worth It

“God doesn’t give you the people you want. He gives you the people you need. To help you, to hurt you, to leave you, to love you and to make you the person you were meant to be.” 

It’s in the quiet moments during nap time and bed time at night when I have the most time to think and scroll through social media to see what others are up to. To think about what I’ve gone through to get to where I am today. To realize what I’ve experienced to become the wife and mother that I am now. For years I constantly found myself questioning what was wrong with me as a person, but more as a friend.

I never once questioned who I was as a wife and a mother- yes, there are times when I feel like I’m not doing enough- but what mother and wife hasn’t felt that way. But I always question what is wrong with me as a friend…

It has taken me years to be able to muster up the courage to put into words how I feel and not care what others will have to say or think, because quite honestly, I’m tired of feeling hurt all the time.

Feeling like I could’ve saved friendships, when in reality, I probably had no control over what happened and shouldn’t constantly be feeling like it was my fault I lost friends. Maybe some friendships did end because of me in some way, but like any other relationship, a friendship takes work. This type of work can only be taken on by one person for so long before it just fails.

“If you don’t leave your past in your past, it will destroy your future. Live for what today has to offer, not for what yesterday has taken away.” 

For the longest time I blamed myself for friendships ending and kept living in regret that I didn’t keep up with friends better. At times I live in regret for who I chose to be in our wedding and those I didn’t because experience has taught me that it’s not about who you have known the longest, but who’s been there for you through every big moment that you should hang onto.

I have known people who will travel the world, but when they’re literally in my backyard {or even 2.5 hours away} and don’t even let me know, it really hurt me. People I considered to be close, if not my best, friends- had me questioning myself as a person. I thought I was a good friend. I thought what we had was a close relationship…

To this day, {3 years after our son was born} it still hurts me to think about our baby shower. These friends traveled all over the country, but they couldn’t even drive 4 hours to come celebrate a big moment in my life. I was about to become a mother! I’m literally crying right now on my couch as I write these words because it still hurts.

Four people came to my baby shower…FOUR! My close friend who had just given birth to her own son 6 weeks earlier, my cousin-in-law and my parents. All the friends I went to high school with, the ones in our wedding and the ones we hung out with every weekend (who all attended the baby shower for my friend 7 weeks earlier) couldn’t have bothered to even stop by. We had planned for a shower for 50 guests who all replied they were going and none of them showed up...

I remember trying so hard to be appreciative of the four people who were there, but it hurt me so bad inside. I came home and cried in bed for what seemed like hours…it was not the way I wanted to spend my 26th birthday.

It’s not how I wanted to welcome our son to the world…feeling like his life wasn’t important enough to celebrate. Our daughter was born 16 months later and I didn’t want a baby shower for her because of the fear of being disappointed again {my family did throw me one- not a single friend was in attendance}.

Kennedy’s baby shower 

I went back down to Houston at the beginning of March with my entire family for a funeral and didn’t bother to tell anyone that I once called my friends that I was in town. I honestly didn’t think it mattered or that they would even reach out. I once lived 4 hours away and when they came to town I was never told.

It’s like once I got married and had children I was no longer worthy of their friendship because I wasn’t in the same point of life as they were anymore. Our wedding is literally the last time I saw any of my friends- and that was 4.5 years ago.

“Empower your friends: speak life over people. Remind them of who they are. Pray over them. Empower them. Give them grace when they need it. Be a voice God uses in their life. In a world where the enemy is constantly speaking lies, choose to speak life over your friends.” -Empowering Women Now

For too long I questioned who I was as a person because of all of friends that kept walking out of my life. I questioned who I was because of all the failed relationships.

It took Tory so long to break down my walls and show me my worth, not just as a wife and mother, but as a person. I was worth being a friend with, I was worth relationships that would empower me as a person and worth friendships that supported me unconditionally not when it was convenient.

I’m not saying that I’m not at fault. I’m sure there have been friendships that have ended because of my actions, but it has taken me years to find the courage to speak about how I have felt.

I felt unworthy of friendship. For too long I felt broken down because I didn’t have a circle of friends outside of my family {I will forever be grateful that I come from a large family}. I may not have that circle today, but I’m not afraid of losing friendships that I don’t have anymore for speaking up about how it’s made me feel for so long.

IMG_2010If I could give my younger self any advice, it’s to choose wisely and that it’s okay to have a small circle. Adjust your crown girl and realize that you are worth it!

The people you surround yourself with will empower you to be the person you truly are meant to be, support you in the adventures you embark on and love you unconditionally…

Or the people you surround yourself with can use you for every ounce of love you have to give, tear you down each time you take on a new venture, leave you behind the second your life is no longer convenient for them and have you questioning what friendship really is…

Which circle do you choose?

Two Under 2

“The natural state of motherhood is unselfishness. When you become a mother, you are no longer the center of your own universe. You relinquish that position to your children.”
-Jessica Lange


It’s 10 a.m. on a Wednesday morning and I’m already on my second cup of coffee as my two babies take a nap (we’ve been up since Daddy left for work at 6 a.m.). In this first month of motherhood with two under 2 and my new life as a stay-at-home mom, I’ve quickly learned how much flexibility and patience it takes to get through a day.

Mommy’s Got 99 Problems, But Her Kids Aren’t One 

Going to the bathroom… Much like teacher bladder, mommy bladder is REAL! This Mommy is seriously driving that struggle bus! The only difference is that when I was a teacher, I actually knew what time I could go to the bathroom and just had to plan my breaks around my class’ schedule. As a mom, I’m not sure how long my kiddos will sleep for or how long Bryan can entertain himself before he starts screaming (loud enough to wake his sister up)! There have been days where I won’t realize until after my husband has come home from work that I haven’t gone to the bathroom all day (that can’t be good)!

img_5559Showers… I have never appreciated them more than I have now (granted I wasn’t allowed to take showers the first 4 weeks postpartum- check out my last post “Exhausted…Postpartum Recovery”– and I’ve only been starting this week)! It’s the only time I have some quiet to myself- not even complete quiet…I always hear Bryan screaming in the background because I’ve left him in his crib. I’ve had to scream from the shower to calm him down! “You’re fine buddy! Just give Mommy 5 minutes!” Or I’ve had to reach my hand out of the shower to bounce Kennedy in her bouncer when she starts to make noise so that she continues to sleep and I can finish my shower (all of this is happening when Tory’s gone at work- I’m not waking up, if I’m asleep, at 4 or 5 a.m. just to shower before he leaves). Having my hair dried and straightened when Tory isn’t home? HA! Forget it! There’s not enough time for that!

8 STRAIGHT hours of sleep… HA! That’s hilarious! I’m a big fan of naps and coffee now! img_5715Just when we finally got Bryan to sleep through the night, enter Kennedy into our lives. Now, as soon as she cries, there are times when she’ll wake up Bryan too! She’s not sleeping at night either! Last night, I was up from 12:30 a.m. until 5 a.m. with her! She was fed, burped and changed… Why wasn’t she sleeping? Who knows! As soon as I set her down in her bassinet she’d started crying! So I tried her swing downstairs, I tried her crib in the other room (maybe the mattress in the bassinet was too thin), I tried walking back and forth while rocking her. Every time I looked down at her, those grayish blue eyes (yes, she might have gotten her Daddy’s blue eyes!! YAY!) would be staring right back at me!

Clean house… I can’t tell you how many times I’ve been told to keep a clean house everyday. That’s not exactly on the top of my list of priorities. I would rather be spending my time playing with my kids when they’re up, teaching them new words, letters, numbers and colors than cleaning up every mess they make or constantly picking up toys. The best I’ve done is kept up with laundry. Even before we had 2 kids, the most I swept and wiped down the countertops was once a week if not every two weeks. Life with a kid happens so quickly, I don’t want to spend most of it cleaning up! I read this article the other day on Love What Matters and I completely agree with everything this mom had to say about being a stay-at-home mom.

img_5494Work and School… Thank goodness I’m only working part-time and I’m somewhere that doesn’t mind me completing some of those hours from home! I’ve worked it out to where I’m going in one day for a 12-hour day, another day for 4 hours and the rest of the week I’m finishing the other 9 hours from home. I’ve been trying to study to transfer my Texas teaching certificate to Michigan, but have you tried studying with a 17-month-old? Bryan gets into everything! I can’t take my eyes off him without him reaching for my laptop or climbing up on the dining room bench to get to my flashcards. Throw in a 1-month-old who will cry just as I’m about to settle down with a stack of cards to look through… Needless to say, my studying hasn’t gotten that far.

Disney Jr. reruns and Finding Nemo… I can’t tell you how many times I’ve watched the same episodes for Mickey Mouse Clubhouse, Mickey and the Roadster Racers, Puppy Dog Pals, Elena of Avalor, Sophia the First, Doc McStuffins and Muppet Babies… Does Bryan get tired of it? Nope! He watches each show like he’s never seen the episode before. Oh and don’t even get me started on Finding Nemo! There have been days when we’ll watch that movie 5 times! I know the movie backwards and forwards now. Thank goodness we have Finding Dory now so I can at least change it out. But try changing it to another movie… he won’t have it! All hell will break loose! Disney Jr. changed their morning lineup this week and it’s been the old school shows like Little Einsteins, Handy Manny and shows I remember watching…Bryan hasn’t been the happiest (try teaching a toddler to be flexible…HA! You’re killing me Disney!). He’s been getting into more things around the house instead.

Mommy’s Got Ninja Skills

My reaction time in the past month has doubled! If it’s not one thing it’s another and there’s absolutely no time or ability to be slow! If I’m even half a second off my game, disaster will strike!

In my case, the disaster is my 17-month-old getting into something he shouldn’t, putting img_5694something in his mouth he shouldn’t, or about to hit his little sister because he’s playing too rough or he’s trying to climb onto my lap while I’m holding her.

I’ve had to lunge across the room while holding Kennedy to catch her backpack from falling onto Bryan because he decided to pull the strap off the shelf (yet I couldn’t prevent a can of peaches falling on my head the other day). I’ve had to sneak up on him just to put food in his mouth because he’s gotten so picky about what he wants to eat (boy, you’re 17-months-old! You can be picky when you start paying the bills- that’s what his Daddy always says)! This morning, it was me pushing the brew button on my Keurig before I placed my coffee cup under it (what mess that would’ve been)!

I used to be such a heavy sleeper, but after we had Bryan the smallest movement he made I would spring up from bed to check on him. Now with two, it’s like my Mommy radar is on even higher alert! When they sleep longer than they usually do, I’m still up just to check on them to make sure they’re okay (Kennedy slept for 4 hours one night and I still had to get up at the 2 hour mark just to make sure she was still breathing).

Bryan will make a slight movement in his sleep and I’m able to tell the difference between whether or not he’s looking for paci that’s dropped out of his mouth or he wants a baba without him fully waking up.

They Call Me Mommy

I wouldn’t trade anything in the world for the time I’m getting to spend with my babies. img_5701Don’t get me wrong, I do miss being a teacher as my friends and old students start school again, but I love every second I’m able to be home instead.

There are days when I’m not entirely sure if I’m able to make it or if I’m doing all that I can for Bryan and Kennedy. There are moments when I have to remind myself that regardless of what others are telling me I should be doing or what I’m doing wrong, at the end of the day, I’m just doing the best I can to provide a good life for them.

I live for those moments. Those moments that may seem small to everyone else, but to their Mommy it means the world! Like this morning when Kennedy was crying in her crib and before I could get up from my work, Bryan had reached for her baba on the table and tried to feed it to her. It’s moments like that, not captured on camera (although I wish it was), that will always be one of the best memories I carry of my time with my babies.

Being Bryan and Kennedy’s Mommy is the best “job” or title I’ve ever held. It’s by far the most rewarding and I know that throughout the years as I watch them grow, there will be even more moments that make me so proud of them.

“Only be careful, and watch yourselves closely so that you do not forget the things your eyes have seen or let them fade from your heart as long as you live.”
~Deuteronomy 4:9

Exhausted… Postpartum Recovery

“Make sure you take care of yourself too. Shower everyday, even if it’s just a quick 5 minutes.”

My doctor’s last piece of directions before we left the hospital 3 weeks ago still rings in my ears. I remember constantly being told to look out for signs of postpartum depression, anything unusual that may cause heavier bleeding, dizziness or fever.

What I didn’t know was that even though I avoided all of these postpartum symptoms, I would be experiencing a whole world of emotions due to the old wives tales my culture believed in and my family would be following strictly.

Asian Old Wives Tales

This isn’t the first time I’d be forced to follow these “beliefs.” I had to go through this after our first pregnancy with Bryan (“The Long Road to Recovery”). Even then, that month was emotionally taxing.

  1. Old Wives Tale: No showers or soaking in water all month. Steam baths only. It’s supposed to help prevent back pains and arthritis in the future?
    • I felt disgusting after the first week.
    • I couldn’t even do the dishes.
  2. Old Wives Tale: Strict diet- plain foods, no seasoning, no fruits or raw vegetables.
    • I like rice, but after this month I’m okay with not seeing another bowl of rice for a while.
    • You have no idea how bad I’m craving fruit.
  3. Old Wives Tale: Only room temperature water or hot tea. Nothing cold is allowed in the body.
    • I want something fizzy so bad! I want a pop!
    • I’ve gotten up super early in the morning before my family comes over just to sneak in a cup of coffee (2 babies under 2 with no caffeine in me? HA! Yeah right!).
  4. Old Wives Tale: No traveling up and down the stairs or lifting anything.
    • Once I’m downstairs for the day, I’m not allowed to go back upstairs until bedtime. Needless to say, I’ve brought down a basket of things everyday…
    • They even went as far as to tell me that Tory needed to carry me down the stairs…(yeah we haven’t done that. I wasn’t going to wake up at 5 AM on the mornings that Tory had to be at work by 7 just to go downstairs…).
    • Telling me I couldn’t lift my son when he wanted to be carried? Yeah, nice try! I’m not going to avoid my son!
  5. Old Wives Tale: Rolling a hot bottle on the stomach after each meal.
    • Honestly, this is the only thing I’ve seen a benefit from. Three weeks postpartum and my stomach has nearly flattened to my pre-pregnancy belly. I’ve lost 22 lbs. and only have 15 left to lose.

Not Myself

Physically, I feel disgusting. Emotionally, I feel like crying all the time. I can’t do anything myself. I’m the type of person that always did a lot myself and rarely asked for help.

I’ve been stuck in the house for almost a month. The only times I’ve been allowed to leave is for Kennedy’s doctor’s appointments and my friend’s funeral (don’t even get me started on how much more emotional I’ve been since). Today is my cousin’s fiance’s bridal shower and I wasn’t even allowed to go. My cousin and my aunts all got to get dressed up to go and I’m stuck at home

I feel like I can’t talk to anyone because no one I know has had to do this. I feel like there’s no end in sight! I asked if we would be done this coming Tuesday (August 21) because that marks 4 weeks since we had Kennedy. Instead of an answer, I received questions back. Why did I want to be done so soon? I’ve gone this long, why can’t I just keep doing it?

This month long restriction has a lot to do with why I don’t want anymore kids. I can’t go through this again! Not only do I not physically and emotionally feel like myself, but I feel like my relationship with Tory hasn’t been what we’re used to.

I can’t go out with him and Bryan to the store. I can’t take showers so I don’t even like to be touched. We rarely eat meals together because I’m on a schedule; most of the time he’s at work until late and my family doesn’t want me eating dinner late, which is something I’ve always been used to.

Here’s hoping the end comes soon before I start feeling even worse… (I miss grocery shopping, cleaning the house and just being able to go outside).

A Four Year Lesson

Heels clicked and clacked quickly against the marble floors; you could smell the coffee img_4925brewing in the staff room as we quickly grabbed our morning jumpstart and snacks before heading to the ballroom to begin another 12-hour day of pageant duties.

Everyone has a memory that’s connected to certain smells and sounds.

Every time I hear someone in heels walking quickly or smell the first cup of coffee (these days it’s my only cup of coffee) brewing at my Keurig, I’m reminded of where I was in my life 4 years ago.

Not in My Plans

Four years ago if you had asked me if I ever thought I’d settle down, get married and have kids I would’ve told you “No way!” I was at a point in my life where I had no idea what my next step would be.

img_4922It was August 2014 and I was 2 years post college. I had a degree in Communication and no plans to pursue the Journalism/PR career I had worked so hard to get to the 3 years I spent in college.

I had just finished my 2nd year as a staff member for National American Miss. I was traveling around the country, involved in an industry I loved and had helped shaped most of who I was growing up (check out my first post “Tiaras to Diapers,” of my journey from pageantry to motherhood). I was the Chief Officer of Operations for The Pageant Planet, the largest online coaching system for pageantry, and managing several interns, helping them build a foundation for their careers. How could it get any better than this?

I was in New York City visiting my baby sister, contemplating my next move. Was I going to move to NYC and begin that journalism career? One I had imagined would be like the movies I loved- How to Lose a Guy in 10 Days and The Devil Wears Prada (Ha! I was young and naive!). All I knew was I wasn’t going back to Houston. There was nothing there for me. img_4923-1

When One Chapter Ends…

Earlier in 2014 I had just gotten out of a serious relationship. A relationship that I thought was my future (anyone who’s really been close to me knows that this has been a long time coming).

We had been together for 5 years (all of my college career and then some). We had been really good friends before we started dating too. It was only natural that it would lead to the idea that we were meant for each other, right?

There was a 2-year difference between us. I was at a point in my life where I was deciding what my future would be and thought I was ready to settle down, he was not. It wasn’t obvious back then, but years later as I look back at it now, we were never on the same page. 

We never really agreed on things when we talked about the future. One of us always seemed like we were giving into the other (that would’ve been a disastrous future together).

Towards the end of this relationship I was spending weeks on end traveling for work and the only communication we really had was via text. We rarely called each other and when I was home, I was spending my time with my family or my two God kids. The relationship was over even before either of us could realize it.

I have been bitter for so long when I would think back to that relationship and the way it ended. Looking back now, one of us needed to be the one to walk away first, otherwise we would’ve been stuck in a future neither of us was truly happy with.

It was a relationship that taught me who I was and what I truly wanted in a relationship. It was one that once the door closed, it remained and still remains locked, sealed and never to be opened again. There were good times, but when I think back at how much we couldn’t compromise and one of us was always giving in- it was a toxic relationship.

Funny, how this relationship had sprouted at church and through our time in youth group together. We spent many years as students and eventually both of us became leaders. In these 5 years, instead of growing in my faith, I had seemed to lose my way and lost any faith I had in God’s plans for me.

Another One Begins…

cf29a61c-5e25-4f93-b933-0cfb1d8a4280-799-00000095ee3853a7As that chapter ended and I was making plans on what I would do and where I would go next, I knew returning to Houston wouldn’t be an option.

I spent two weeks in NYC, seeing whether or not I could see myself living there- definitely could not; I couldn’t stand the crowds! I knew I wanted some family around wherever that led me. My only options at that point were to move back to Michigan or Dallas, where some cousins lived. If I moved to Michigan, I had my entire extended family but my parents would be too far.

So I took a chance, went to Dallas for a few interviews and a week later had all my things packed up in my little Kia Rio ready to begin a new chapter.

In this chapter, I wasn’t going to go looking for love. I wasn’t going to go looking for anything. I was just going to take it one day at a time and see where it would lead me.

God’s Love and Work

I was always taught that God works in mysterious ways. When I had the least amount of faith in Him and His plans, He worked in ways to bring my life together and rebuild my faith. 

I came to Dallas broken and lost. I had no faith left in relationships or in myself. I had img_2100started to accept the idea that I would be single forever and that my journalism career would never happen (I was right about my career).

I had spent years teaching my youth group students that God works in mysterious ways, but I never really believed it myself.

When I least expected it, God began to show His plans for me in the most unexpected ways. He brought someone into my life who would teach me what it meant to love someone unconditionally (outside of family), he would teach me what a real relationship could endure and overcome and he would introduce me to things I never dreamed of doing (having a stable group of friends that hung out every weekend, going to softball games and being in a relationship that faced real adult obstacles).

img_4861When I thought I wasn’t worth much or capable of being loved by anyone (outside of my family), God brought a man into my life who would become my best friend, love of my life and future father of my children. When I was at what felt like the lowest point in my life, Tory came into it, and in so many ways throughout the past 4 years, my faith was being restored. 

If you had asked me 4 years ago if I saw myself married to an incredible man with two beautiful children, I would’ve laughed at you. I never could’ve imagined my life would have a chapter with me as a wife and learning to be a mother to two under 2 (years old).

Here I am… in the greatest chapter of my life!

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways- For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, my thoughts higher than your thoughts.”
~Isaiah 55:8-9

“That Mom”

“For I know well the plans I have in mind for you- plans for your welfare and not foe woe, so as to give you a future of hope.” ~Jeremiah 29:11

PC: Christopher Martin

16 months ago we held our sweet little boy for the first time. As we looked into his beautiful brown eyes and counted all his little fingers and toes, we couldn’t help but think of all the hopes and dreams we had for him.

As parents, people always want the best for their kids. We dream of dreams while they’re young and can’t dream of their own just yet (or at least voice them). We can only hope for the brightest future and for them to have more than we ever did!

The {Unwarranted} Opinion of Others

Since we have become parents, we have been on the receiving end of so many opinions. “You need to do this, you need to do that…” all so that our son “can be this or that.”

I’ve constantly needed to remind myself that all these are just unwarranted opinions of others trying to stick their noses in others’ lives. These are the opinions of those who think they know better.

It’s one thing for family to give their opinions, after all, they too only want what’s best for our kids (for the most part). The “advice,” more so opinions, that have really gotten under my skin are from strangers, acquaintances, or people who think they have a say in our lives. It always starts with a “In my opinion…” Let me stop you there… unless we have a relationship or I’ve spoken to you about my kids on a regular basis, I don’t want your opinion.

“You need to let your daughter be this.” {Do I really?}

“Your son is going to be (insert occupation/relationship/personality here). {Oh is he now? And you know this how?}

“She needs to wear this.” {Why?!}

“He needs to do that.” {No he doesn’t need to do anything}.

What needs to happen is others butting out of our personal lives when they’ve never been invited in.

Before and After

Before I became a mommy, I told myself I wouldn’t be “that mom.”

That mom that’s over protective. That mom that’s defensive.

Now, as I learn more about what our moms {and dads} did and sacrificed for us to be who we are and have all that we do, I can understand more now, why they were/are the way they are.

Those moms {and dads} are protective of their kids’ rights to dream their dreams and choose for themselves what path they take in life. Those moms {and dads} are defensive so that their child may never have to experience the unfairness life has to offer before they’re ready to experience it.

Have I become like those moms? Yes, I have {and I don’t mind it}. I will do everything in my power to protect my children’s rights to live their lives as they choose {when they can make those choices}. I will love them unconditionally no matter what plan God has for them. I will support them 100% even when it’s not a plan I had hoped for.


Their happiness is what’s most important! Not my plans, hopes or dreams. At the end of the day, I can dream as many dreams as I’d like, but what I’m concerned most about is that they’re happy, healthy and safe!


As I sit here, sipping on my cold up of coffee {I’ve reheated it several times, but let’s be honest, when’s the last time I finished coffee in one sitting}, watching my toddler son nap and feeling my unborn daughter kicking, I can only prevent my children from the opinions of others for so long. I pray that they one day can understand that God’s plans for them are far greater than we could ever imagine.

“I can do all things, through Christ, who strengthens me.” ~Philippians 4:13

Home Stretch…Or Is It?

“Weak made strong, in the Savior’s love. Through the storm, He is Lord. Lord of all.” 

A little over a year ago, we had hit the home stretch of our first pregnancy and I was definitely on a roller coaster of emotions. We had no family around and a very small group of friends that we could rely on {we realized that the day of Bryan’s baby shower when only one of our friends showed up and the one cousin I had in town}.

You would think that now that we are surrounded by an endless number of family and a few more friends than before that I would be much better this time around as we hit the home stretch. Boy, am I wrong! I FEEL LIKE I’M EVEN WORSE!

I’m a disaster this time around! My mood’s are way more up and down. The closer we get to Kennedy’s arrival, the more emotional I’ve gotten about losing a balance in my life that our little family has created.

As joyous as it is to welcome a new member of our family. It seems to be another unspeakable subject for anyone to bring up, let alone me, the mother, that it’s about to disrupt this balance that Tory, Bryan, the dogs and I have created in our home. We’re bringing in a new life, a new personality all into the mix. It’s scary!

One Minute I’m Happy…

I’m so excited to be welcoming our baby girl at the end of July! We finally have a girl! The balance in the house has been restored! It’s no longer 3 boys (Tory, Bryan and Manny) against 2 girls (Nugget and myself)!

I finally get a little girl that I can dress in the adorable dresses {it’s so much more fun to dress girls than boys} and share my love of pageants with…at least until she decides that pageants are or aren’t for her and she’d rather do something else.

Don’t get me wrong, I love having my little boy and he definitely has taught me what it means to be a “boy mom” or even to be around boys {boys play a lot rougher than girls}. I was raised in a household where my dad was the minority and it’s definitely been a learning experience to be the only girl in the house (besides Nugget…but she acts like a boy haha)!

Then I’m Sad…

I’m so sad that things will be changing. On my days off it won’t just be Bryan and Mommy time in a couple of weeks. It’ll be Mommy and babies. This should make me happy right?

I feel like I’ve missed out so much with Bryan in his first year since I was working. Although I had the weekends off to spend with him, it was also the time that was shared with other family members who hadn’t seen Bryan all week. I missed out on some of his firsts because I was stuck at work or stuck commuting home from work.

As much as I’ve tried to explain it to others or to even bring myself to express how I’m feeling, it’s really hard. It’s been so hard to bring myself to accept that I’m feeling this sad when everyone around is trying to tell me I’m supposed to be happy because I’m pregnant. It’s not normal (or at least around the people I’ve been around) to be sad.

I’m sad that things won’t just be Bryan and I anymore and that I haven’t had as much time with just the two of us as I would have liked. It’s so hard to explain it to anyone else, because I feel like I’m coming off as selfish.

Ooh I’m Overwhelmed… 

This time last year, we were completely set with everything we needed for Bryan. We had enough clothes, diapers, wipes and all of his nursery set-up. This time around, we have NOTHING

Everyone looks at me like I’m stupid when I tell them that we have nothing. “But this is your second child, you shouldn’t need that much.” But we do!

I’m sorry but I’m not going to dress my daughter in my son’s old clothes. We don’t have any girl clothes. We don’t have anymore newborn diapers or formula (Yes, I said formula. We tried the breast feeding thing and it wasn’t for us) stored up.

I want new furniture for our daughter. We have two infants/toddlers…we’re not going to share one crib, one car seat, one stroller, etc. I feel like we have nothing ready for Kennedy and she’s arriving in 3 months…

You may say 3 months is a long time… but it’s NOT!!

Why Am I Scared… 

I had mentioned last month that this pregnancy had brought on a number of emotions and I felt like I was just on this crazy roller coaster.

Even with the enormous amount of encouragement and support from my husband, I’m still feeling scared about things. I’m still scared about how delivery and recovery will go. I’m still scared about so many things that I know are out of my control.

OMG Now She’s Angry…

There are so many things I want to say about why I’m feeling angry but I’m not. I’ve learned to hold my tongue and just hold in everything that I have to say about the things that upset me.

I’ve felt worse after venting about things that are upsetting me as opposed to feeling better. The more I vent, the more I feel like I’m being judged by others. All I can say is that I’m tired of being told about all the things that I’m doing wrong and making me feel like I’m a bad parent or a parent that’s making my children suffer because “I had them too young.” 

We’re in the last trimester of this pregnancy and even though there’s this rush of emotions and everyday is like we’re starting on a clean slate as parents, I cannot wait for Kennedy to arrive.

Bryan has taught us a lot about being a parent in his first year alone. We know that Kennedy and Bryan will continue to teach us as we teach them in the years that we have them under our care.

Here’s to the home stretch…or is it?

Roller Coaster of Emotions

file1If anyone ever argued that a woman isn’t strong for all that she endures during pregnancy or that anyone can do it is a complete fool!

There’s always been this stigma about feeling anything other than joy when pregnant. How could you feel any other sort of emotion?! You’re creating a new life. You should be happy about that right?

NO! That’s not the only feeling that comes up when you’re pregnant. You’re dealing with 9 months of up and down emotions because your hormones are all over the place and there are times when you yourself can’t seem to explain it.

The second you open up your mouth to express anything other than happiness, there’s a flood of questions that make you feel ashamed for the way you feel, embarrassed for voicing your feelings if they don’t express how excited and happy you are for the birth of you child.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m completely elated for the birth of baby 2. Bryan is the biggest blessing and joy in my life and I wouldn’t change the past year of my life for a second!

There’s just this overwhelming mix of crippling fear and insecurity that’s seemed to overcome me this time around and I’m at my breaking point because I’ve been so scared to open my mouth to tell anyone how I feel.

I’m scared to be ashamed of for feeling like a terrible mom, a horrific wife and downright weak woman for not being able to handle these emotions and show nothing but joy for such a miracle that so many people only hope for.

I have felt like I have no one to talk to because no one in my family has ever expressed that they’ve felt this way so it’s not possible for me to be feeling this way or that if anyone has ever felt this way in my life, they’ve never voiced it so why should I?

Crippling Fear

Pregnancy is rough! A woman is literally giving up control over her own body as it prepares for another life. She’s dealing with a compromised immune system. Limbs and nerves that once felt fantastic now feeling much weaker. The need to constantly find a bathroom because she has to pee {even if she’s hardly had anything to drink}.

That’s not the fear I’m talking about though. I’m okay with that. Knowing that in 9 months, I’ll be welcoming a new life and holding my child in my arms. I cannot wait for that! {I was thrilled to hold Bryan for the first time in my arms}!

I’m talking about giving birth! No one ever talks about how scary it is! I can’t tell you how many nights I’ve woken up from a nightmare about giving birth…and I’ve already gone through it before {so shouldn’t I know what to expect?}!

Every pregnancy is different…so every birth, of course, would be different.

I’ve woken up in sweats terrified from the nightmares I’ve had about something going wrong. Something happening to either me or the baby.

I’ve been overcome with so much fear about not being there for my family. I’ve had to pull over my car on my way to or from work sometimes because I’m crying so bad about all the stories I’ve read about the moms who didn’t make it and the families who now have to continue life without her.

The babies who are growing up without a mom or growing up with a new mom. A husband who’s had to find a new companion to experience life with. I find myself calling me selfish for not wanting what’s best for my family, whether it means I’m a part of it or not.

For that reason, I’ve buried this crippling fear down deep inside me in the hopes that it would just pass, but in the moments when I’m feeling overwhelmed or alone, it comes crawling back up and I find myself crying in the car…crying in my office…crying at home. Feeling weak… feeling out of control… feeling selfish.


Pregnancy changes a lot. Not only the family dynamic, but it changes the woman herself- physically, mentally and emotionally. Yes, the whole family changes physically, mentally and emotionally as they prepare for another human being to enter into the daily routine of things in the home. I feel like the woman changes the most… and it’s a feeling that goes unspoken or unacknowledged.

As we prepare for our little girl {oh, that’s right…we found out this past Saturday}, I’ve not only felt insecure about my body changing and all these things happening to it that’s out of my control, but I’ve felt so insecure about the relationships I have with others.



In the past, I’ve felt insecure with other relationships because I had always been hurt. I had always been too forgiving, it seemed, and I felt like I was constantly setting myself up to get hurt…until I met Tory. He changed all of that.

He made me feel worthy, special, important, loved and showed me what unconditional love is, regardless of all the things I threw at him. In our first year together alone, he dealt with me losing two family members {my dog I had grown up with for 10 years and my uncle} all within a month of each other, he had to take care of me countless times because I had gotten sick and {my friends who really know me wouldn’t be surprised} dealt with me being on crutches for 3 weeks because I had fallen at work in a puddle of water.

After dealing with all of that and more, he still stuck around and showed me that I was worth every obstacle, we were worth every obstacle. I knew I had no need to ever feel insecure ever again because here was a man who stuck around and saw the worst in me and still believed in me when I didn’t even believe in myself.

So why have both my pregnancies, this current one even more so, made me feel so insecure about our relationship that I’m so stuck in my head. I’m worried about other people trying to butt into our relationship and ruin the one relationship that has ever made me feel like I’m worth it. I’m so worried that I haven’t done enough in our relationship or that I haven’t been doing my part and that I’ve been slacking. He reassures me almost everyday that I do too much for our family, but I still feel like I don’t do enough.


I’ve had so many breakdowns and have snapped so many times with several of my cousins, my grandparents, parents and siblings that I’ve gotten stuck in my head that I’ve created this terrible image of me to them. I’m not the person they knew and grew up with.

I feel like I’ve been so up and down that they’re starting to get annoyed with being around me and would rather avoid me at all costs. I haven’t been able to talk to my family like I usually am without something making me breakdown or frustrating me more than it usually would.

There are a lot of times instead of talking to any of them about how I’m feeling, I just hold it in and hope that it goes unnoticed.


fileOf all my relationships, this is the one I’ve felt the most insecure about. When Bryan was first born and up until just a couple months ago, we were very close. I did all his baths with him, he would crawl over to me at night and cuddle with me to fall asleep, he would be so excited to see me when I came home from work.

The more my stomach starts growing, the less he wants me. The more he cries when I try to take him from his daddy or his great-grandparents. The less I see that smiling face when I come home from work.

It’s made me so insecure that my relationship has changed with him that there are times when I’m so sad that I’m pregnant again because I don’t want to lose what I had with him.

I give him less baths now and have to rely on others because he squirms so much and has gotten so much heavier for me to lift out of the tub…it took away that time we had together. He doesn’t cuddle with me as much anymore at night…I’ve become jealous of his relationship with his daddy and that just makes me even more sad, because I know I should be ecstatic that Bryan has such an incredible daddy.

I’m scared that when baby girl arrives, my relationship with my son will never be the same as it was or that he’ll resent me for bringing another baby into the house. Yes, he’s only a one-year-old, but it hurts when he pushes away or when he doesn’t let me carry him.

I can’t wait for me to return home and play more of the stay-at-home mom role than working all the time and being unable to see him as much. I’m hoping that will help my relationship with him, but until then, I’m scared that he’s going to push away from me even more.

Pregnancy can be such a beautiful and incredible thing, but with it comes so many emotions. I wish that it were easier to talk to other people about it, but there’s always that fear that you’re being judged for not being a good mother when you’re feeling all these ways or for being weak.

Not Good Enough

I’m going to be honest, I stared at a blank page, a blank screen and my fingers hovering over the keyboard for what felt like days but was only a couple hours… I’ve been searching for the right words to say, for the right tone to express myself, for the right time to bring anything up at all. Even now, I feel like I shouldn’t be writing anything.

For a couple weeks now I’ve felt completely disconnected from everything and sadly, the two most important people in my life. I’ve felt no connection at all. I come home from work and when I once saw a smile from ear-to-ear, I only see very rarely.

Who’s Fault Is It

Don’t get me wrong, I love my son with all my heart and would lay my life on the line for him. I’d do anything to see him smile, and lately I’ve felt like I just haven’t been able to do that.

Yes, I’m jealous that he smiles from ear-to-ear every time his daddy comes home from work. Yes, I’m jealous that his great grandparents get to spend more time with him now since I had to go back to work.

It’s my fault that I’ve been disconnected from him since I have to do the laundry, cook, clean the house. It’s my fault that the only time I ever spend time with him is to give him his bath {and even these days he bawls his eyes out when we do that} or I’m changing him and feeding him.

It’s my fault that I haven’t found a work-life balance or that I’m spending two hours everyday commuting to and from work instead of spending those two hours with him. It’s my fault that I have to wake up at 4:30 AM every weekday morning to get ready for work so that I’m out of the house by 6:00 AM…

I distanced myself… So it’s my fault that I feel like I’m not the mother that he deserves.

Not Good Enough

I wrote a post a couple of weeks ago to new parents letting them know that they were enough and that we all knew that we were doing the best we could. I was completely lying to myself. I haven’t felt like I’ve done nearly as much as I should for my family.

When I’m constantly being told that “I still care too much about myself” or “I’m too young to understand what it means to be a mother,” or I’m just constantly being beaten down for the way I take care of my family, it begins to all sound true after a while.

For a while now I’ve felt like I’m not a good enough mother and wife. I’ve felt like I’ve just being in this huge daze going from one chore to the next. Putting on a fake smile and acting like all is fine in the world, all while I’m completely broken up inside. Not being able to talk to anyone about it because I’m scared of being judged for being selfish, being judged that I don’t want to be a mother or a wife or that I started a family too young and now my husband and son have to suffer for it.

Going Through the Motions

After being told day in and day out that I’m doing this and that wrong, it’s really hard to believe that I’m capable of doing anything at all.

Maybe the meals I’m making are actually disgusting. Maybe my baby’s bottles aren’t warm enough. Maybe I’m not cleaning the house enough. Maybe I’m not bathing my son the right way. Maybe he’s happier with his daddy because he’s around more or loves him more.

But none of this is ever allowed to be spoken about. None of my feelings should ever be validated as okay and that I should be ashamed for the way I feel. I should feel ashamed that I don’t take better care of my family or that I don’t show that I appreciate them. I should be ashamed for choosing a job that’s an hour commute each way instead of working closer to home.

Bottle It Up and Throw Away the Key

They say the first year is always the hardest. But they never mention that the obstacles could break you and that you may feel like you have no one to run to. Our marriage has suffered because I haven’t been able to communicate anything. We’ve argued more because I haven’t been able to ask for help.

How can I ask for help when I’m constantly feeling the need to prove to myself that I am good enough to be a wife, mother and teacher all at once? How can I ask for anyone to listen to how I’m feeling when I can’t even understand what’s going on? How can I expect anyone to understand when I’m feeling like I’m a failure for my own actions?

What more can I do other than to bottle everything up and just act like everything is okay?

I’ve always been better with my written words rather than speaking verbally, which in some ways have come back to bite me in the ass.

How can I tell other new parents that they are good enough when I don’t even believe it myself?

Parenthood and a Social Life

“You never know who your real friends are until a life changing event happens.”


This past weekend our little family attended a wedding and it definitely made me realize that even the smallest things in your life can change the way people interact with you.

I realized I was holding longer and more entertaining conversations with people who were once just acquaintances better than with those we considered our closest friends. Why?

We all shared one thing in common. We are parents of infants, toddlers and young kids.

Goodbye Social Life

When we first became pregnant, I became very apprehensive at the thought of us having to give up our social life outside of our home.

I was scared to give up the Friday night hangouts with Tory’s softball team. The random nights out to the bar or to Buffalo Wild Wings {because going to the bar on a night other than the weekend had become an okay thing as an adult I guess} would  be out of the question. I was scared that our friends would stop inviting us out because our new bedtime was way before they would even head out for the night.file-16[1]

It was as if the second my belly started to show, all of our friends we used to hang out with just disappeared. It was a gradual disappearance either…they all just vanished into thin air. We stopped getting invites, we stopped getting calls and texts. We weren’t part of the “cool group” anymore {“Sweats are all that fit me right now…” “YOU CAN’T SIT WITH US!” -I wonder how many of you actually got the reference right away!}.

We had been exiled into parenthood. We stopped going out. Instead we were having dinner as early as 6 pm {because let’s face it, I was exhausted towards the end of my pregnancy}. We stopped staying up late. Instead we were in bed by no later than 8 pm {hello, exhausted!}.

Some say we did it to ourselves. We may have turned down more invites than we used to, but it still would’ve been nice to get an invite or given the option to hang out you know? Apparently that wasn’t the case anymore.

What hurt even worse than our social life going downhill was that people actually made us think that they were still there for us and supportive of us. This brings to mind my disastrous baby shower {giving me a reason as to why I’d never want another one in my life- how is it possible that over 40 people RSVP’ed to attend and only two people, not including my parents, showed up?!}

Now, looking back at the way I felt, I just feel stupid about it. Why on earth did I think saying goodbye to my social life would be so bad? I honestly wouldn’t trade the last 4.5 months with Bryan for anything in the world {but I guess that’s something every new parent has felt at some point}.

Hello Parenthood

I probably sound like I’m complaining about being a parent and not being able to go out anymore…in reality, it’s the COMPLETE OPPOSITE!! I wouldn’t trade being a mommy for anything! Bryan has been a blessing in disguise!thumbnail_file-16

I always knew that one day I’d be a parent, but I never knew how much I wanted to be one until we held Bryan for the first time in the hospital. The second he was in my arms it was over! He had my heart and I’d do anything for him.

There are people that I talk to that question why I’d ever trade having a social life for the late night feedings, explosive diaper changes or even the screeching cries of an unhappy baby…my thoughts, they’re not parents yet, so they wouldn’t understand. The love you have for your baby changes your outlook on your life and the things you choose to do.

If I used to love staying up at night just to party it up with my friends, now I’d rather get up in the middle of the night to feed my son. If I used to love going out all the time just to get out of the house, now I’d rather stay home on the weekends and just watch TV with my husband and watch our baby grow into an amazing little man!

Finding a Balance

I applaud those new parents who have already gotten the hang of things and have been able to find enough balance and help so that they can still maintain a social life, or even the social lives they had before baby came around…how do they do it?!

file5[1]Tory and I haven’t had a date night or even a moment just the two of us in 4.5 months without one of us toting Bryan around or keeping within in arm’s length in case he cries.

In all reality though, even if we could find a babysitter, why on earth would we want to go back to partying like animals and not having a care in the world when we have a sweet little baby at home waiting for Mommy and Daddy to come home? How on earth can any parent continue to drink like they did during those college party days without a second thought as to how their baby is doing at home?!

I already have withdrawals going back to work and feeling guilty because I wish I could be home with Bryan all day, every day. I can’t even imagine how I would feel if I put my social life as a priority over him. I’m not saying that all parents do this, but I’ve met some parents and heard of some parents who continue to be selfish and think of themselves over their children.

I bawled my eyes out the day I was told that I had a baby too early and that I was too worried about going out when in reality the only reason why I needed to find babysitters was so that I could go to work and go grocery shopping {check out our post for new parents, “Dear New Parent, You’re Doing Great”}…

Like I said before, I’m not an expert at being a parent and I’ll definitely be learning the next 18 years, but it’s all about trying to find a balance between parenthood and having a social life.file1-4[1]

I realize now that we will be finding ourselves around others who have kids as well and becoming closer with those parents who have kids around Bryan’s age rather than those who don’t have kids and are at a different point in their lives than we are. I’m not saying that our friends who don’t have kids aren’t worth our time anymore, because that’s far from it…I’m just saying that it’s getting harder to maintain relationships with those who don’t understand that we have put our roles as parents first instead of ourselves and our own social lives.

Leave some comments below on advice that’s worked for you to balance parenthood and a social life.

Dear New Parent, You’re Doing Great!

Dear new parent,

I know there will be days or situations that happen that will make you question your ability to be a parent or question if you’re doing good enough for that little baby in your arms. You are NOT alone!

In these first 4 months with Bryan I can’t remember how many times someone has said something or something has happened to make me feel this way. I wish there were more people, other than my sweet husband, reassuring me that I’m doing the best I can or that Bryan could verbally tell me that he’s happy, but there isn’t.file1-4

It’s sad that there are more people judging Tory and I on the ways we choose to feed Bryan, burp him or even let him sleep. Whatever happened to the idea that every parent does parenting differently and respecting that?! Did people forget that they were once new parents as well? When did it become okay for others to insert their opinions on your parenting styles and belittle you or undermine your ability to be a parent in front of your child (I’ve even gotten this from people who have never been a parent themselves)?!

I mean, yes, Bryan is still too young to understand what’s happening, but if he continues to be around people, even family members, that are constantly telling us that we’re not doing things right and go against what we’ve said, how will he ever learn to respect his parents and our decisions?

It hurts to hear that I’m “neglecting my child,” because I left him at home with his uncle and aunt (it’s okay to ask for help)- instead of taking him with me, because I know there would be an opinion about that too- so I could go to the store. Or that I’m neglecting him because I’m not letting him finish his bottle (when he’s clearly pushed it out of his mouth), that I’m not feeding him on his schedule- I just fed him an hour ago and he eats on a 3-hour schedule- so you decide to mess with his schedule and feed him anyway. OR, this one just irks me, that I’m not letting him sleep enough so he’s not going to grow properly. You are NOT at home with us at night, so you don’t know that he’s sleeping longer at night now and only takes little cat naps throughout the day instead of sleeping hours on hours all day!

If that didn’t get to you, here’s something that will! Your baby sleeps in his bouncer, swing or crib at home, but others think that he can’t sleep unless they hold him or carry him the entire time and won’t listen to you when you say you let him fall asleep on his own without having to rock him to sleep. So they undermine your authority again! They continue to carry him and create a habit that you- NOT THEM– have to break! Now, you’re the one dealing with the crying and fussiness because they’ve taken him off his schedule and routine, that you, his parent, has created.

It hurts to hear that you, the parent, have ruined your baby’s schedule and routine. Excuse me?! He has a perfect schedule and routine, but you didn’t think so because it’s not how you did things!

It is so hard to blend two different parenting styles while having to juggle the opinions of others about how things used to be done and how you’ve chosen to do things now isn’t good for your baby.


It hurts being told that you and your husband had your baby too early in life because you guys aren’t ready to be parents (check out our post about how parenting is a full time job) and are too busy going out all the time. Really? Where have we been going? To work (so we have money to pay the bills), to the store to buy food and formula to feed him. We can’t take him to the  store or anywhere out of the house without being told that we are hurting him by exposing him too early. So are we supposed to stay cooped up in the house until he goes off to school?!

I’m constantly being told that I’m not doing things right or being told that I shouldn’t be doing all the things I’ve been doing- like going grocery shopping, lifting bags, doing too much at work (I’m not even sure how there’s an opinion on that considering no one that makes that comment even sees me at work) or even doing too much around the house.

I listened for a month and tried the recovery process that was traditional for our family {not everyone in the family even did it or was made to do it}, and to be honest, it was miserable! I couldn’t do anything I wanted-like shower, all I wanted was a hot shower after being spit up on all day or to wash my hair- I felt more disgusting the entire month than I felt helped. I couldn’t eat what I wanted, and even now, 4 months later, still get yelled at for eating certain things. That recovery process stressed me out more than it benefitted me. It makes me miserable even thinking about having any more kids because I’d have to go through all of that again. I know that if I object, I’ll get more backlash than I do now for the way I’ve chosen to raise my son.

Honestly, when did it become okay for people to insert their opinions, expect you to follow them and then say that you aren’t doing things right because you chose to do things differently?! When did it become okay for people, who have NEVER been parents, to comment on the way you raise your child?! How are new parents supposed to learn what works or doesn’t work for them if they are constantly being ridiculed for their decisions?!

So to my new parents, as hard as it may get or for all the backlash you will receive, remember you are not alone, there’s a whole bunch of other new parents experiencing the same things!

So when your little one isn’t having the best day, remember it’s all worth it when you hear that giggle or laugh. When someone is telling you that you aren’t doing something right, look at your happy, healthy baby and know that you’re doing the BEST you can! You’re doing great! Hang in there and good luck!


A new Mommy that’s still learning


P.S. I know that there will be MANY opinions that come with this post, but someone had to say something and why not come from someone who has experienced a lot of it!