Does this look like vacation?

I am fairly sure I don’t even need to write a lot.  

We are on vacation.  

But really???

Hashtag: life; reality; parenting; humor

No rest for the wicked…

Oh, wait.  I mean the mommies (smile and wink).

Greetings from La Jolla sunny California!

When you go through trauma, you are never the same. Nor should you be.

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We remember many days and events of history and our own lives each and every year.  Many are celebrations of excitement.  Like birthdays, anniversaries, announcements of babies, and so forth.

But we, collectively as the world, also remember the other days around the world.  The ones where great sadness took place.  And they are remembered for the ages in different ways.

While the first celebrations usually include cake and balloons and banners and shouting and laughing and running and clapping, the second are usually remembered with flags, marches, speeches, wreaths, memories.

My family has lived trauma—where everyone has miraculously emerged on the other side of it.

But to say that we made it through okay would not be accurate.

We made it through.  Our son is alive.  And we get to watch him grow.

But this trauma has changed me in a million and one ways.

The first being gratefulness.  I look at my living, breathing, running, crazy happy boy and rejoice that I get to walk life with him.  And every moment he is alive, I hold him tight.  I don’t ever want to let go.

But that brings me to my second feeling.  The one that makes me cry.  Sadness.  Sorrow.  Heartbreak.

I received my baby back into my arms to live another day.  And I know that this is a gift.  A gift beyond.  Not every mother nor father gets to receive their child back into their arms.  Alive.

Sometimes those arms get to only hold their baby one last time.

And, as tightly as they hold their baby, they have to let go.

I know, one day, I will have to let go of Maxwell, but it is not the same.

At all.

Which brings me to now.  My last feeling is “It’s okay“.

That’s what I hope the mommies and daddies are telling me.  The ones that did not get their babies back.  The ones that had to let go.

That’s it’s okay to celebrate my son.  And his life.

That’s it’s okay to be happy.

That’s it’s okay to hold him tight.

And it’s okay to not want to let go.

That’s it’s okay.  Because that is what they would do had life been different for them.

I can’t even write this without sobbing.  My three year is sitting next to me constantly touching my “creers” as they are running down my cheeks, touching them lightly, somehow sensing these tears carry a heavy weight:  Sorrow and guilt entwined with personal gratefulness.

Yet, I still hope in my ears I hear the words, “It’s okay.”  Because I know for their own lives it is not okay.  And never should have been.  Yet it is for them that way just like for me it is a different way.

A way I will never understand…

The other day, my husband and I were discussing “This time of year”, and that’s when my son, Maxwell, heard us praying, “Thank you, Lord, for giving us back Maxwell.”

After we were done praying, Maxwell looked at us with wide eyes and a goofy grin, saying, “Mommy, you’re silly.”

Because, to him, he is fine.

He doesn’t know the great battle that was fought for his life.

He just knows he lives.

And I just held him.

Trauma has changed our family.

Trauma nearly broke our family.  Not just my son’s life nearly being ripped from our lives but our marriage, too.

Trauma has made us work a lot harder.  Trauma has made us think a lot more.  Trauma has opened up our hearts to a bigger world—a world of immense suffering.  Yet overcoming.

Trauma has made us more empathetic and understanding.

Trauma has taught us how to cry freely.

Trauma has caused us to put on glasses of reality.  That life will not always deal you rainbows sprinkled with sugar.

And it has made every day of our living, breathing, walking, talking lives more important.  More beautiful. More fragile.  More.

Trauma has taken judgement out of me and made me crumble.

Trauma has made me a mess and yet picked me up.

Trauma has torn a huge hole in my soul and then healed it up.

Trauma has shown me the harshness of the world and then the compassion that surrounds the world.

And trauma has taught me that I am not alone.

Trauma has changed my very core.

Maybe, just maybe, one day I will say thank you to God above for this trauma.

Until then, I’ll simply say “Thank you” to God for bringing me through it.

“But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope: The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:21-23. 

Here are some sites you can click on to help you understand your trauma:

1.  Healing from Trauma

2.  When Trauma Strikes

3.  Understand Trauma and PTSD:  A Christian Counselor’s Perspective

 

Eyebrows Make A Man…

the crazy naked littles

Okay, we have had a lot of laughs on this particular blog site about eyebrows.  I, alone, am a living, walking, talking, breathing eyebrow failure of a woman.  BUT TODAY…today it was all about a lesson my son was teaching my youngest daughter.  And, I am willing to bet, it’s a lesson that YOU, AS WELL, didn’t even know 😉

Maxwell (age 4), sitting at our lovely farmhouse renovated table, messy hair, and slightly hoarse morning voice, eating the “talking” cereal with his little sister, GoGo Bean (aka Josephine Diane), looked excitedly at her and proclaimed, “JOSEPHINE!!!!!  You’re growing EYEBROWS!  Soon you’re going to turn into a MAN!”

And as excited as he was for Josephine to turn into a man, this newfound knowledge did not sit as well with his 3-year-old sister who then proceed to cry, “I DON’T WANT EYEBROWS!”

Entertainment abounds, my friends…

Even in the art of eyebrows!

Getting in Shape? Not me…

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Saw this on Instagram this morning…I nearly died laughing.  Because.  Well, just because this is not my #truth when it comes to my infamous eyebrow and s.  First of all, I don’t get in shape.  Second—not even my eyebrows are there!

Last—I actually never knew the internet was FULL of all sorts of quotes about EYEBROWS!

I mean…I thought it was just my blog that ranted about these top hovers.  But, no.  I was rolling.  And so I found a few fun quotes and a few blog reminders so we all may enjoy!

Here we go…a few fun internet finds and how I tend to blend right in to this craze.

Enjoy!

Jack Black has something to say about eyebrows, and I learned this one the hard way…When I didn’t have one:  Vanity Will Get You One Eyebrow—Less

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Next..I never knew how important they were until I went to make a statement about my marriage: Marital Unbliss and Lack of Sleep Had a Devastating Effect on My Eyebrows

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I guess this last one is especially humorous to me since I write a blog…Haha!  Enjoy the quote and the blog: Do You Want To Wax Your Mustache?

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Record the delights in your heart

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I pulled out a journal that my mom sent me for my 40th birthday the other day.  There is so much for me to write and see and say, and I wanted to begin to record.

But pulling out my journal brought me back to the last several years of my life and marriage.

If you have followed this blog since its inception 3 years ago, you would know that my husband and I have had to work really hard at our marriage.

One point, while we were receiving professional help, my husband was journaling.  It was a good thing.  Yet is was a VERY depressing thing.

While it was both cathartic and healing—it was just SO SAD!

And every time I read it, it was hard to read.

Hard times in life are hard.  And we need to share them with someone we trust—but that doesn’t make it easy.

So when I pulled out my journal…during a hard day of just being me, being mommy, being wife, I decided to do something different.

I decided that I was going to write about the joys of my day.  And while my children sat screaming and crying and throwing fits, I remembered that ONE moment of the day where they were pure joy—

And I wrote that.

And I giggled while I wrote.

And I shared with my husband what I wrote.

And we smiled.

Through the tears, through the difficulties, through the hard—we smiled…because, really, there was something to smile about.

Take for example, my family photo above.  My 2-year-old delight (sarcasm inserted here) cried and pouted and shouted throughout our entire photo session.  She was tired.  She was sleeping.  And she is two.  TWO.  That, in itself, is an answer for everything 😉

She did not want to smile for any photo.  It was impossible.  And as much as we tried, we just could not get that ideal and dreamy family photo that I had envisioned on the drive to the palace gardens where we were taking photos.

So we had to come to the conclusion to either leave her out of photos or just go with the flow.

And we did both.

When she wasn’t in the photos, we clicked magnificence.

When she was, we just had so much fun with her two year old pouty expressions…capturing not perfection but real life.

At the end of the day, when the gardens were about to be locked up, we wandered to the exit and just let the children run and play.  After all, they could get dirty now that mom had what she wanted.  That is when the sun actually came out.

No, dusk was on the horizon, but our 2-year-old Josephine ran and played and laughed and smiled.

And that is when my husband took back out the camera that he had already packed away and started to shoot.

And that’s when we saw her smile.

You know…It’s good to record life.  The ups and downs and all arounds.

But sometimes we especially need to record the joys—because they remind us to smile!

 

 

 

Vanity will get you one eyebrow—less

Yes.  Most of my blog posting comes with utter truths of utter failures.

This one comes to you with the proclamation that I am also vain.

And that got me one eyebrow.

You know when you age?  Like, you know, are no longer 18.

It’s like chin hair pops up.  And out.

And, like, your baby belly never goes away.  But my daughter told me that my belly is squishy and comfy.  That makes it all alright, right?!

Do you remember a recent post I wrote about the horrifying “wax your mustache, madam?” ???????!!!!!!!

If you don’t, please click here.  It did not entertain me in the least (smile and wink).

Anyhow—I’m going to one up that cosmetician and post something FAR MORE HORRIFYING than mustache waxing…

And it all comes back to my eyebrows!

I say “back to” my eyebrows—because these eyebrows are ever so famous on this here blog…

If you don’t know the henna story, click here!

But let’s not dawdle on the past—it’s time I bring you present day…

To my one eyebrow.

So, I was looking in the mirror the other day.

When your children grow just old enough to let you actually shower and look in the mirror, that’s when you realize that you’re not only tired—but also…

(Insert My Big Fat Greek Wedding voice here)

“Getting old.”

Like, seriously, my eyebrows were crazy.

And I am seeing things.

Like going a bit senile.

I could SWEAR I saw some white hair.  I would like to say shiny silver…but my hair seems to be skipping that blending stage and heading for Santa Claus white.

And they were in the tip top portion of my forehead and on my eyebrows.

And they were sticking out…Like straight out.

I looked like I was heading towards the portrait of Groucho Marx, except living in Poland.  And being a woman.  And not being born in 1890—although my 10-year-old probably does think I was born WAY BACK THEN.

That is when brilliance struck me.  I didn’t want to waste precious and painful time plucking eyebrows—I would just use this super easy cosmetic razor and give them a little control zip.

So I dug it out and zipped…

That’s when I heard it.  It wasn’t the gentle hum of the razor guard.  It was the vicious roar of electrifying laughter shouting, “I’m going to get you eyebrows…zip.  Zip!”

And sure enough the razor won.  I lost.

An eyebrow, that is.

And so—I painted on eyebrows for weeks with the hilarious, tears rolling down your face, exclamations from my daughter—“Why are your eyebrows BLUE today???!!!”

I’ll tell you why, smart girl…because I never learned how to paint on eyebrows.

Or apparently groom at all…

Here’s to you and all of your crazy!  I’m here to make you feel normal and victorious each and every day!

***

And, go ahead…make your friend’s day.  Like and share.  My eyebrow can handle it!

The Worst Part About Parenting a Child With Food Allergies…

Do you honestly want to know one of the FIRST things I did when I left all 3 of my children with my hubs and went to visit my family in Arizona???? I BOUGHT, ATE, AND ENJOYED PEANUTS!!!! And I felt…

Click here to read more:  Source: The Worst Part About Parenting a Child With Food Allergies…