All the feels …

This morning I had a yucky awful terrible run. Those are THE WORST and they usually leave me pretty irritable. About an hour after my run I spoke with my son, George, who is in Germany. This was THE BEST! My spirits were quickly lifted after hearing his voice. I miss him more than words could ever describe and his calls make me feel SO MUCH better. But a little while later Libs sent me a picture of herself after she got her hair styled for her senior portraits that she’s having done later today. This got me CRYING. When did my Little Libby Lu Lamb Chop become this beautiful young woman?!?! Needless to say, my morning has been chocked full of emotions.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you feel all the feels!!!

Perfectly …

Today is my daughter Libby’s 17th birthday. To say that time has passed quickly since the day she was born is an understatement. I remember her beginning like it was yesterday.

I was standing in a deli after church on a Sunday morning when I realized that I was pregnant with Libs. I had just prayed the day before, that if the timing was PERFECT, that I would love to have another baby one day. Life was definitely not perfect at that time. I had just returned back to work and was loving the contract that I took with a local hospital. My head was in a different place. Yet there I was in that deli, already stricken with ALL DAY sickness and knowing that I was headed into what would likely be my third high-risk pregnancy. NOT the perfect time but it definitely all turned out PERFECTLY! God knew that our family needed Libs and He knew exactly when we would need her. I saw God move so much when I was pregnant with her. It was truly miraculous. And she came in God’s PERFECT timing. Libs was born into this world to a room full of laughter. All of us, doctors and nurses included, were laughing and having a wonderful time. Her birth was honestly like a party. I remember when I first held her, I felt an unexplainable familiarity with her. I felt like I had held her my whole life. She fit PERFECTLY into my arms, my heart and our family. I can’t imagine us without her! Libs is one of the funniest people you will ever know. I love how she sees and relates to this world. She is genuine and honest. She has always been a justice-seeker and she is incredibly fair. Libs is a gifted artist and brilliant, but most of all, Libs is kind and compassionate. This girl has a HUGE heart. I couldn’t be more proud of the young woman that she has become and of all the things that she has already accomplished. Life will take a lot of twists and turns for her over this next year. But I have no doubt that her future will turn out exactly how she came into this world … perfectly.

Well, I hope you all have a day where things turn out PERFECTLY!!!

Celebrate EXTRA …

Happy World Down Syndrome Day everyone!

March 21 was designated as a global day of awareness that has been officially observed by the United Nations since 2012. This date was chosen to represent the triplication of the 21st chromosome (3/21) found in individuals with Down Syndrome. As you all know, my daughter Reese has Down Syndrome and she is the most amazing human being that I know. She is strong, smart and beautiful. Anyone who knows Reese will say that she makes the world a lighter and brighter place. Seriously you guys, she is THE BEST. I am truly blessed that God chose me to be her mom!

Well, I hope you all have a day where you celebrate EXTRA!!!

A happy day …

Good Morning World! Today I have JOY in my heart. More than usual! I feel so much relief now that Reese’s surgery is over. I already see positive changes in her! My son, George, is home from college for Spring Break. This is ALWAYS good! And despite a little rain coming on Wednesday the weather here is absolutely GORGEOUS. My heart is SO FULL!

Well, I hope you all have a HAPPY DAY!!!

Finding out who you are …

Over the weekend I found myself at Urgent Care with Reese. Saturday night she presented with some signs and symptoms that seemed vaguely familiar to me. After putting all the pieces together, it hit me like a ton of bricks. Reese has a hernia. Sure enough, my suspicions where right. She was diagnosed with an abdominal hernia, and after seeing her pediatrician yesterday, they suspect that she may also have a small ulcer from stomach acid and the stress she experienced from vomiting so much. This makes everything she has been through the past few weeks finally make sense to me. Which thankfully brings me a lot of peace of mind. Not knowing was very upsetting. But with the learning of this kind of information, actions must follow. This is when being a social worker, with a boatload of medical experience, and a mom all seem to come together perfectly. Or so, this is my hope.

If you ask most people who know me, they will say that I’m a pretty happy and excitable person. But when it comes to stressful situations, I’m calm. Unusually calm. So calm that it often angers my children. They think I’m too “matter-of-fact” sometimes. But I honestly, can’t help it. Usually when I’m presented with a fairly stressful situation I consider the information I am given with objectivity and discernment. I look at all of the facts, tap into my existing knowledge on the topic, research any questions that I may have, develop a plan and go from there. This whole process gives me a feeling of control over seemingly out of control situations. This also pairs nicely with a promise that I made with myself long ago as a way of dealing with some anxiety that I was experiencing. I don’t worry about ANYTHING unless it is literally sitting on a plate in front of me. The bottom line is, for the most part, I can remain rational when most people can’t. But I will tell you that as a parent, having dealt my children’s health issues in the past and as of present, this can become hard. REAL HARD. I am thankful that I can boast a pretty successful track record of “pulling it together” … so far.

I admit that in the past few weeks I have been emotional regarding Reese’s health. Her symptoms have been concerning and I was presented with no solid answers to why she was experiencing them. Well, we had some, but my mama’s instinct said that there was more. And there was. But that period of unknowing really unnerved me. Thankfully, we now know what we are dealing with. And even better, it’s fixable. THANK YOU GOD.

So now it’s time for action and THIS what I’m good at. THIS I can handle.

Today we see the surgeon. It is all happening much faster than I expected. I’ve already done a ton of research on treatment plans and I feel ready for this meeting. Finally KNOWING the UNKNOWN I feel confident again. I want my daughter pain-free, symptom-free and restored to her happy healthy active self. I know that these goals will keep me focused, grounded and driven. And that feels good.

When I earned my MSW in 1995 it was YEARS before Reese was even a thought in my head. Yet it is through her that I have a complete understanding of my being. You see, God knew she was coming. Gracefully and purposely He molded me into exactly what Reese would need to live her best life. He educated me through books and life and love to turn me into the mommy I am today. A mommy full of crazy fierce protective unconditional love for this incredible little girl who has so much to teach the world. Today that mommy and the social worker in me collide (again) and I get the privilege of doing my life’s calling, my purpose, for her. For this amazingly beautiful little soul that God has gifted me with to raise and to love. I can’t help be but humbled by His trust. And grateful. So. So. Grateful.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you find out who you are!!!

FOMO …

We are out of town celebrating Sidney, my oldest daughter, this weekend. And we are taking a few extra days to do it, HA! In situations like this it never fails. My body is energized and ready to PARTAY! It doesn’t matter how late I stay up, I wake up early the next day. Like my body and mind are screaming WHAT’S NEXT?!?! Trust me, I would LOVE to sleep in like normal people. But I think my body is worried it’s going to miss something important if we sleep an extra hour or two. Yes body, we will miss a few things … like the undead hours of the day and unopened coffee shops … OY.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you don’t have an innate fear of missing out!!!