Gray Matters

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This time last year my life changed in a big way. My mom was diagnosed with Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM) aka brain cancer. We decided that we would not be moving to North Carolina for me to pursue my masters degree and instead we decided to have a baby and buy a house. The GBM diagnosis changed my life and my family and it opened my eyes to what is most important.

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My cousin Danny will be participating in the Race for Hope walk this year in May to raise awareness and money for research. Please check it out at Race for Hope Walk.

To anyone that has been diagnosed with GBM or has a loved one with GBM, your a warrior.

This week I find refuge and peace in the eternal promises of God. He will make all things new.

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Zip My Lips

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The past few weeks I have been reading a book called Keep It Shut by Karen Ehman. The tag line is “What to say, how to say it and when to say nothing at all. ” I’m about half way through the book and I’ve become more and more aware of how I use my words. I am more aware of how much words matter and I am totally challenged!

Sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me!

The fact is that words do hurt people. Words can be traced back to the root of most problems. Words can solve conflicts or make them worse. Words bring a whole range of emotions good or bad. With one sentence we can bring down life long friendships and “solid” marriages. We have free will and can choose to say and do what we want in this world but there are always consequences, good or bad. Sin changes everything.

Hatred stirs up conflict but love covers over all wrongs. Wisdom is found on the lips of the discerning.           Proverbs 10:12-13

I am guilty of saying hurtful words to those closest to me. I find it so easy to use my hurtful words to those closest to me. My sin is seen by them and my dirty laundry can not be hidden. I can not take my words back after they have left my mouth. This new study on words has made me become more and more conscious of my attitude positive or negative and the words that coincide. I am such a chatterbox with those closest to me but find it so difficult to speak openly and freely in any other situation. I am awkward and try to fill every quiet gap with words. I can’t stand the silence. The silence must be filled with words. Luckily I live in the mid-west….?

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I was challenged by this question: If those closest to me were asked which would they say more accurately describes you: a great listener or a constant chatterbox?

I am the chatterbox! I struggle to just listen. I always feel the need to insert my opinion. Someone will ask me to pray about something and I do but I first think about is how the problem could be solved. I want to talk it out and provide a solution to the problem and then pray about it. It all seems so logical….but God wants me to go to him first. He wants me to use my words and go to him. God asks me to make him bigger and myself smaller. By constantly inserting MY opinion into a situation I am constantly trying to take GOD out of the situation.

Set a guard over my mouth Lord, Keep watch over the door of my lips.

Psalm 14 1:3

I have been praying over Psalm 14 1:3. It is my hope that I will be radically changed with how I use my words. I pray for my words to encourage and to lift others up. I pray that my words will bring love to my husband and daughter and not tear them down. I pray that my words would be silent when God needs to be loud.

Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely.

Psalm 139:4

Since getting pregnant and now having Hadley I have heard so many different ridiculous words said to my pregnant self or about my baby and I do not like them..Words said without thinking. Truth is that I do the same thing. I can not take back the negative hurtful words I say. I can not unsay what has already been said. The words are already out there creating first impressions and last impressions of myself. I want my words to be gentle and kind. I want my words to make God bigger and myself smaller.

Cheers to new challenges and God changing my heart!

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Unforeseen Comforts

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I love being at home. I am a homebody. Buying our home has been one of my most favorite steps Geoff and I have taken together. My desire when we bought our home was to be able to open our home to people, host fun get togethers, have a place for relatives to stay, raise our children, adopt children and be a family. Our home has been all of these things and more. In the short time of owning our home there has been happiness and sadness, old and new traditions, dreams and reality.

This week has made me increasingly more aware that my maternity leave will end in a month and I will have to leave home and go to work. I don’t want to go back to work I only want to stay at home with Hadley. The feeling is so foreign to me. I find myself desperate to find ways that we could make me staying at home work out financially. But I know that staying home just isn’t the right timing for our family right now (student loans are a blessing and a hinderance). I never thought that when we bought our house I would want to take my “homebodyness” to another level and stay at home with my Hadley.

I know that I am not the only new working mom that feels this way. There’s something about knowing that I have to go back to work that makes me not to go back to work. I just don’t feel ready to go back and I don’t think I will feel ready in another month. Honestly, I don’t think that I will ever be ready. But I know that  I am where I am supposed to be and that the hurt of going back to work won’t last forever. I know that that no hurt felt on this earth will last forever. Today I will find comfort in that.

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Before I had Hadley I was told by several co workers about crying and being emotional post baby. I did not take this seriously. I thought surely that won’t happen to me..but then it did.

I was calm when after 24 hours of trying to have a baby and I was calm when I was told I would have to undergo a C-section. I was calm during and after the c-section. I thought I was good smooth sailing, those people were crazy. But then it hit me after all the drugs wore off and I wasn’t surrounded by what felt like hundred of people and text messages. I CRIED. I cried because I didn’t know how to ask for a food menu from the nurse. I balled and cried like a 3 year old who didn’t get the last cookie.

Let me back up, I am not a person who cries much. In fact I knew that I should marry my husband because he was the first person I could cry in front of and not feel like I should hide in a corner. So crying over food menu’s was new territory for me.

Since coming home from the hospital and falling off the hormonal roller coaster I thought I was good again. But now I still find myself crying. Only now I find myself crying because I am happy. I am happier than I have ever felt in my life.

I cry because the love I feel for one small human being is completely overwhelming.

I cry because I feel so grateful to have her to snuggle her in my arms and to be her mom.

I cry because I never thought that I wanted to be a mom.

I cry because the love I feel is completely mine.

I cry because I have a very small understanding of God’s love for me as his child.

I cry because I can’t imagine the depth of God’s love to give up his one and only son, Christ, for my sins.

I cry because the idea of ever doing that in my life with my baby sounds impossible.

I cry because I am reminded of how amazing God truly is and how much he means to me.

I love being a mom. But I love being a mom because it has deepened my love and faith for life. And I love being a mom because I have learned that it’s OK to cry. And crying is a beautiful thing.

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1. Changing Diapers

I don’t mind changing diapers. In fact I enjoy this part of taking care of my child. I use cloth diapers and I get excited because I am reusing materials. This make me feel accomplished even though the process is gross.

2. Reading Books 

I haven’t finished a book since I got pregnant. Everyone told me to take advantage of my time pre-Hadley but I don’t think I understood how much time I had until I had her. I appreciate the quiet and peace of reading a book and a good story so much more now than I ever have. I’ve already finished a few books since starting my maternity leave and it’s been great.

3. Joining the “Parent Club”

Geoff and I have officially crossed the border of the no kids club to the kids club, YAY! I have found that people want to talk to me more and I actually have things to say. I am a socially awkward person (how i am any good at social worky things, I have no clue) so this is extremely helpful to me.

4. Catching up on TV shows

I love all things TV. Especially when Netflix adds new shows. I have found so many new shows to watch and have caught up on old ones. While I have lost many hours of my life from the DIY network, my husband has also lost hours due to the growing honey do list.

5. Increased Prayer

I have found myself in prayer so much more. There are times that Hadley will not sleep for what seems like forever and I want to pull my hair out and cry. Times such as this I find prayer to be completely everything that I need.

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