When the Wheels Go Round & Round

I sat in the front row of an elementary classroom today, as my son stood at the front with his classmates singing the Wheels on the Bus with corresponding hand motions. I spent nearly every moment of the preschool ceremony willing myself not to the cry tears of joy threatening to spill down my cheeks. I swallowed hard, took deep breaths, and blinked back tears.

When Alvaro was born, and I was told about his une
xpected diagnosis, never did I think I would feel the joy and pride I felt watching my little boy sing the Wheels on the Bus. It felt so “normal”, so typical.  I feared a lot of things when I was told he had Down syndrome. I couldn’t see past my fear and discouragement about what his diagnosis could mean for his future.

And here I sat, watching my son thoroughly enjoying singing one of his favorite songs, as any other preschool student would do.

Some days I am saddened that I can’t fully understand everything he says. He works really hard to learn to say what comes naturally…

My Restless Heart - In Constant Motion

What does one do with a restless heart?

I imagine much can be done with a rested heart. I know when I am rested- I get so much accomplished.

But a restless heart is more like a flitting bird. One that moves from perch to perch before it ever has any chance of settling anywhere.
Can you picture that bird? Can you see it in your mind’s eye? Whistling and moving but never quite stopping any one place for long?

That’s how my heart feels lately. I know I'm generally restless in nature. Anyone who has sat through a movie with me knows this. I don’t sit through movies. I shift and move, I lean and rearrange my positions more times than you can count.

But it’s quite a thing to feel like my heart is restless. It wants to settle. But there are so many things going on it wants to touch, that there is great difficulty perching anywhere for long.

Some days friends, my heart longs to settle in. To find the one passion that will allow it to dig roots and flourish and grow. But there is so much to lov…

Travelling at the Speed of Life

My friend David recently decided to take a road trip around the US visiting friends along the way. It was meant to be 3,000 miles in 7 days. To date, his great adventure has taken him 4,700 miles and 17 days.

The additional miles and days were added for one very simple reason: life happens. The unexpected came his way. Days ago, it was a fuse that blew five times on the leg of one trip. Another time it was realizing he was close to a friend and didn’t want to pass up the opportunity to visit him when what stood between them was less than a hundred miles. Especially in light of the fact they live well over 1300 miles from each other. He even spontaneously accepted the invitation of two bikers on the road along Hwy 90 headed towards Alabama for some lunch and a beer- an adventure that wasn’t planned but turned out to be worth taking.

Yesterday his great adventure landed him in my neck of the woods, visiting me and my family. And what was meant to be 3-hour ride down the Interstate into t…

Existential Realities: Reflections from a Grateful Mother

“How’s Alvaro doing?” someone asked me earlier today. “He’s doing great, like nothing ever happened,” I replied. “It’s a good thing you took him to the hospital when you did. If you  had waited until the morning, he’d.…” he trailed off. “If we had waited until the morning, he’d be dead,” I said, finishing his sentence matter of factly. “If we waited even another hour or two, he would have died.”

He then commented on how lucky we were to have things turn out like they did and added that all the prayers said for Alvaro worked.

I agreed and walked out of the room pensive and heavy hearted. I bit back tears as I moved forward.

For those who aren’t aware of our recent life events, about a month ago, our then 3 year old son fell off the Junior Loft Bed we converted into bunk beds for our boys. The bed sits 50” high (just a little over 4 feet high). Alvaro tripped and fell off the back, hitting his head on the carpeted floor. He didn’t hit any objects, but he was in obviously in terrible a…

Navigating The Trenches of the Early Parenting Years

I have a beautiful friend who while encouraging me, described the early years of parenting as being “in the trenches.”

I remember feeling like that phrase perfectly encapsulated the essence of these early parenting years.
I, my friends, am very much in the trenches. In the very thick of it really. With 2 small children, a full -time job outside the home, a revolving door of doctor’s appointments and the usual lineup of necessary duty’s: cooking, cleaning, laundry, etc., I am in the trenches.
And I feel it.

The weariness from it is not just physical. Sometimes my heart and soul feel just as weary as my body does from the barrage of duties, responsibilities, and teaching my children to be kind, respectful, and responsible human beings.

Can I be honest with you? Some days when I’ve been just a little too tired and a bit too overwhelmed, I begin to think some not great things. Things like, “I’m not cut out for this” or “I’m just not enough” or “I am not enjoying my life.” Worse yet I l…

A Hiatus

I don’t have a lot of quiet places in my life.
I wake up to an alarm.Spend the morning hauling off kids to school with the radio on.Spend the day answering phone calls and talking to customers at the office. Spend the evening in discussions with my husband while cartoons blare in the background. I also often listen to podcasts intermittently for learning, faith growing, and inspiration.

And there is noise. Everywhere. Add to that social media; More noise. It doesn’t go through my ears but often through my eyes and into my heart. Visual noise. Some good. Some bad. Some inspiring. Some discouraging. But all the while there is LOTS going in and very little silence.
Unfortunately, for the most part I prefer the distraction of all this noise. Its allows me  to ignore my anxieties and worries. It distracts me from frustrations or sorrows I may be feeling. Ultimately, it provides me an escape from tasting dissatisfaction when life doesn’t go the way I planned (which is more often than I like).…

My First Major Regret as a Mom

My children are 5 and 3 years old respectively. In terms of parenting years I haven't been doing this very long. I have, however, been doing it long enough to have stumbled into my first major regret. It can even  be dubbed a Parenting Fail.

A week ago, I was picking my 5 year old from Extended Day at school. The attendant asked for my child's name as I whisked out proof of my identity to collect him. She suddenly got a big smile on her face. "He's so cute when he gets dropped off in the mornings."  And without missing a beat, as I walked towards the door, I replied: "Too bad he's not as cute when I pick him up at the end the day."

Lucky for me, she didn't hear me. Someone else got her attention as the words carelessly spilled from my lips. And suddenly, I was pierced with embarrassment and conviction.

Let me explain why.

When I became a SAHM Mom a little over 2 years ago, I had no clue what I was in for. I went from a full time working Mom to a …