Sunday, April 24, 2011

new life

I have had so many thoughts jumbling around in my head lately. So many, that I can't seem to form any of them into words or concrete ideas. Thoughts that seem to exist more in my heart than my head, I guess. Today, as we commemorate Easter all over the world, and celebrate the beautiful and miraculous resurrection, I have spent a bit of time trying to collect my thoughts and contemplate and think on the importance of not only the resurrection of Christ, but of all living things.
Resurrection literally means to bring back to life. To me though, life is more than just living and breathing. It's having vitality, zest, a unique personality and spirit. Christ came back in all of His glory. It's something I've known my whole life, but when I really stop to ponder on these things, I can't help but be completely overwhelmed. Overwhelmed at the magnitude of His sacrifice. Overwhelmed at the pure miracle of His resurrection. Overwhelmed at how little my mind can actually grasp.

I absolutely believe that someday we all will experience that same miraculous resurrection. A new breath of life. Our vitality will return. Our beautiful spirits will be reunited with our physical bodies. This has always held such magnitude with me, but now, it takes on an even greater meaning and importance. I know that my sweet, pure husband will be given his vitality back. I know that some day, he will be completely healed of all physical disabilities he has; we will all be healed of emotional heartache. We will experience a new and even greater life.
This photograph means more to me than I can express. I tear up looking at it, and imagining how Mary Magdalene must be feeling in this moment. I can actually imagine myself kneeling and gazing up to a beautiful and perfect man whom I have grieved the loss of, whom I have loved with all of my heart, whom I have missed beyond description, being perfected and whole. I in no way mean to diminish the fact that this picture is Jesus Christ himself, but it is extremely personal to me on so many levels.

It is no secret, and I hope that I have always shown, that I absolutely love Matt with all of my heart. That being said, we are two people with our own struggles and heartache. We are trying to learn and grow, figure things out, and love each other through the tough parts. We have ups and downs like any relationship. We ebb and flow. Sometimes I worry that while we are trying to figure things out, we are going to completely ruin our children. I hope that the good things we do, the nice things we say to each other, the affection we show, will outweigh the serious mistakes we may make. There are times when life goes along smoothly and happily, and other times when I wish that our resurrection could be tomorrow. I sometimes cannot wait for my perfect man to return, for Matt to be able to regain what is temporarily lost. Sometimes it seems like that will never happen. There is so much comfort in knowing that it will happen.

In the meantime, we continue to learn to love each other better. That is what this life is about. Making mistakes, taking three steps forward and two steps back. Sometimes we don't move forward and take 10 steps back, but there is mercy and grace that picks us up, dusts us off, and carries us forward again.

I came home from work the other day and my mom had bought me purple tulips. Purple tulips were our wedding flower and that is the first thought I had when I saw them. They symbolize happiness, love, and new life to me. They put a smile on my face. They remind me of how in love I was in sunny August nearly 7 years ago. I am still in love and I know that. Love matures and grows just as we do. The love I have for Matt now is different than it was then, and it would be regardless of our life's circumstances.

I feel so truly blessed to be married to someone who loves me so unconditionally. Even though it shouldn't, it actually makes me feel bad sometimes. I feel bad because maybe I don't deserve someone who is so forgiving and loving and adoring. Sometimes I am not very forgiving, loving, or adoring. The other night we were out to dinner and I noticed two young twenty-something girls watching us and talking. After a few minutes Matt got up to take Kaden to the potty and one of them came over to me. She was so sweet, "I have been wanting to talk to you but I was waiting until your husband left because I didn't want to embarrass him. I ride the bus with him and can I just say that he loves you so much. He is always talking about his beautiful wife, how wonderful and patient you are, and how much he loves you. He is so grateful that you have stayed by his side. I have never heard anyone talk so sweetly about someone. It makes me so happy. That is real love, you don't see that much anymore." I was so appreciative that she took the time to talk to me. I cannot even count how many times someone has said something similar to me.

I joke that Matt's bad memory works to my benefit. Does he forget how beasty I can be? Does he forget how impatient and irritated I can get? Maybe he just doesn't notice those things. Then I thought of something I hadn't really considered before. Yes, he does notice when I am being less than pleasant. He does sense when I am frustrated or angry. He knows me and how I tick, and he knows when I am being awful. I find myself getting so frustrated with him for things that he can't help, yet he forgives and overlooks the things that I do that I can help. I know that realizing this should teach me something, and I hope that it does, but it also just makes me feel so bad. It makes me realize that I have so much learning and growing to do, and how lucky I am that I have someone by my side who will be patient and love me no matter how much I don't think I deserve it.
This sweet little carving is the "Angel of Miracles". I like things that symbolize something or remind me of something. I love this little statue. It reminds me of new life and miracles. As I contemplate this day, my life, and my marriage, I am filled with hope, gratitude, and a realization that we are given new life each day. We are also given the gift of someday being perfected, renewed, and given a new and everlasting life, and what a beautiful day that will be.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

he's been so miserable

Beckham has been so sick the last few days. He's had some awful tummy bug and a fever that just won't go down. My little talkative boy hasn't said a word or cracked a smile in days. We've spent a lot of time cuddling on the couch. I love cuddling with a sick baby and napping together. It breaks my heart to see him so miserable though. I just wanted to cry last night when he was burning up and looked like every piece of him was hurting. I hate that feeling that there is nothing else I can do for him. I hate that I can't explain to him why he feels so miserable. I just hold him and hug him and tell him it will be okay. This morning he woke up and his fever was gone and I could tell he felt a million times better. He will actually eat a tiny bit and drink a little. He smiled and even laughed a few times today so I know he's getting better. Thank goodness.

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

the neverending (losing) battle

Oh man. Sometimes being a wife and mom and all the other things I am feels like a losing battle. I mop the floor (which I think might be my least favorite household chore) and 30 minutes later Toby runs in with muddy paws. I vacuum my carpets and Kaden spills popcorn all over them. I wipe the counters and get the kitchen sparkling, to turn around and have hungry little boys looking up at me begging for snacks. I fold laundry, get it all stacked up nicely and a little person thinks it looks like the perfect landing place sending fresh perfectly folded clothes flying. I get the kids bathed and they find an open tube of toothpaste or have some sort of potty accident. Dinner gets spilled on a clean stove, juice gets spilled on the newly shampooed carpet, fingerprints are smeared on sparkling glass, important mail is used as a sketchpad. Sometimes I cringe as I hear the crashing sound of a bucket of toys being dumped. Sometimes the last thing I want to do is get out the playdough or paints, or let Kaden run around outside in the mud.

Even though keeping things orderly, clean, and functional seems like a losing battle most of the time I am okay with that. I want the kids to have adventures. I want them to build forts in the living room. I want to proudly hang their artistic creations in our home. I want to be a part of their childhood and not always be worrying about messes. I want them to feel like they are at home in their home. I want them to feel comfortable and happy. I want to think back on this time and know that I was more concerned with them than how clean my house was. Of course there is a balance that needs to be there, and we are working on that. The boys are learning to clean up messes and to try to help things stay neat and organized. I am still trying to find the balance between having a spotless home and a home that looks like a bomb just went off. Someday we'll find that balance. For the most part our home is presentable and looks nice, but also looks lived in. It looks like a place where small children play. To me it's home. It's a happy and peaceful place. Even though it drives me nuts sometimes, it's ours and we are so happy here.

Monday, April 11, 2011

shower for andree

My friend Lacy and I threw a bridal shower for Andrea. It was pretty last minute and I think it turned out well. I never feel like I am very good at being the hostess. We had some fun decorations and the food was SO yummy. Our cute friend Amber came and brought her sweet Jacob. He is so adorable.

Friday, April 8, 2011

sweet little man

Kaden is the sweetest little thing on earth. When he isn't busy bulldozing and crashing through his own little world, he is so caring and concerned for other people. In the last few months we've had a few really big car expenses. Today when I was picking the boys up, I was telling my mom about the crazy bill I had to pay and out of nowhere got a little teary. I hurried into my car so my mom didn't have to see me have a meltdown or something. Kaden was happily sitting in his car seat and got a really cute concerned look on his face. He said, "Mama, why are you crying and so sad?" I told him that our car had to get fixed and it cost a lot of money and that makes Mommy sad. I told him that Mom and Dad have to work really hard for money. He got a big grin on his face and said excitedly, "Hey Mommy! I have some money in my pocket!" He reached his little hand into his pocket and pulled out a penny. He put it in my hand and I nearly lost it. His happy smiling face; he was beaming. His innocence and sweetness. Then, he says, "Hey Mama, if you need more I have lots of money in my piggy bank. Sharing my money makes me so happy and I want you to be a happy mommy! I never want you to be sad or have tears." I could have died. I was already feeling weepy and then he goes and does something so cute and sweet and I just felt so happy inside. I love my tender-hearted little man and he has made me happy and cheered me up more times that I can count.

I love these pictures. I love having boys. This little guy is everything I love about boys. He is so funny, too. He has an obsession with "rolly-pollies". He somehow manages to find them everywhere. He is always bringing them to me to show them off. He asked me today where the rolly-pollies eyes are. Then he asked why the ones he catches are always sleeping. When I am not paying attention he stashes them in his pockets and other vicarious places. As he was getting out of the car today he said very matter-of-factly, "Mom, I told my little rolly-polly, 'Someday, I see you in Heaven!'"

This kid lights up my life. No matter how stressful things can get, his bright smile and twinkly eyes always bring me back to what's important and what makes me happy. His hilarious questions and statements and tender gestures brighten any mood and make me the happiest mom in the world.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


The last week has been rough. I was starting to get a litlte cocky in my "wow, I haven't even really been sick this whole winter! That never happens!" attitude. I guess I learned my lesson. I will keep my gloating to myself. Except I didn't say that to anyone, so I guess I just have to keep my gloating to my subconscious self. This past week I have contracted some sort of sore throat from you-know-where. Sore throat doesn't even touch the surface of this round of near-death I have been experiencing. I may be sounding dramatic here, but seriously this was bad. Pounding headache, screaming back and neck, fever, earache, you name it. I consider myself sort of a connoisseur of throat maladies. I am usually a trooper and just suffer through and grin-and-bear-it. Not this time. I tried that the first few days.
I took Becks in to the Dr. last week for pink eye. I happened to get this as well. Talk about adding insult to injury. I sort of thought that was only something little germy hands-always-in-face kids get. Apparently, hands-always-in-face adults get it too. Anyway, I got a throat culture then and there and of course, it came back negative. I am still not convinced, but whatever. So, I have spent the last 6 days feeling the worst I have felt in years. Honestly, nothing made it better. I have been living under my heated blanket on the couch and in my bed. I even found myself in tears, curled up on my bathroom floor next to the heater. The kids have been angels and Matt has been so helpful. I felt a little sorry for myself when the sun was shining and it was 75 degrees outside and I felt like I couldn't even enjoy it.
Finally, yesterday I drug myself out of bed and went to the gym. I thought even a small effort would maybe help sweat the disease out of me. It didn't seem to work, so I went back in to the Dr. She was so sweet and felt bad for me. At least she acted like she did and I appreciated the sympathy. She subscribed something and I think my life is starting to come around. I think I'll send her flowers. I think I maybe, just might be on the mend. But, I don't want to start gloating or anything because we know where that got me.
Suffice it to say, isn't is amazing how much more we appreciate things when we've been somewhere so much worse? How amazing does it feel to wake up feeling good when you've felt awful for so long? I know this situation is just a minor pathetic little sob story, but really, it's a lesson to be learned. I am not one to take things for granted, at least I try not to. I have always been so appreciative for my good health. I am grateful that I am only sick for one week, when others know nothing but suffering. I feel humbled every time I go through an illness or trial of any kind. It takes the bitter to know the sweet.

Monday, April 4, 2011

my best friend is a super model

and she's getting MARRIED!! I am just so excited. I almost feel like I am getting married or something. I can't wait. I am so happy for her and so happy that she and Justin finally decided to just do this thing! They are so good together and I feel like I am getting a big brother. Justin is wonderful and I couldn't think of enough good things to say about him.

They are getting married at the end of the month and I can't wait. I feel like I have been planning this moment my whole life. Oh wait, never mind, I'm not the one getting married. But still, it's just so dang exciting!

Oh, and they are obviously going to have very good looking children. Hogging all the good genes there, I tell ya.