Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Marriage After Kids

Before I get into my muse what do you think of the new look??  

My mind is more confused now as to why people sometimes have children to "fix" or enhance their relationship.

If you know J and I personally or have been around Aunt LaLa for a while you know how much we love one another and how hard we work at having a healthy marriage.

Marriage is one of the greatest and scariest commitments you can make.

Josh and I celebrated our eight year anniversary today. Eight years! And in year three we decided we were ready to start trying to get pregnant. We had no idea what a journey we would be taking in trying to grow our family.

In year seven it happened! We had a baby! What a miracle, our baby boy.

I thought I was prepared for everything... as much as I could be. But what I was not prepared for was how having our miracle took a toll on my marriage. Wow. 

I was felt so disconnected to J. It literally broke my heart. 

First we went through a traumatic birth, unexpected move, living with family, then trying to find our bearings as new parents. Stress much? Whew. 

We were on different sleeping schedules, I was struggling with depression and being overwhelmed, we had not alone time AT ALL... Dates? yeah, no, I'm not leaving my baby... that was just too difficult. Talking did not happen because we were afraid of stressing the other or hurting eachother. 

Did I mention in all this Josh started a new job?  (Smile)

No one told me about this part. I knew there would be change, but I just did not think it would be a negative one in my marriage. 

But here is the good stuff. Josh and I love each other so much and we have strived to have a healthy marriage keeping God at the center. So when we faced all the difficulties we prayed and asked God for help. 

There were conversations of "Okay, we are really feeling disconnected... what do we do?" We prayed. Asked God to show us and help be what the other person needed. 

It got better after we moved into our place. It was easier to find our groove or routine as a family of 3. We started to reconnect and it felt so great. 

We know now that we have to work more diligently to stay connected and MAKE time for one another. 

Just as in our relationship with God, we go through seasons of life. Sometimes your at the mountain tops and then your deep in the valley's. It is there growth happens. When we are in these valley's we need to remind ourselves of God's goodness... in marriage remind ourselves of why we chose this person to spend life with. 

This past year God has shown me the deepest parts of myself and I have really been stretched. In these difficult times I grew stronger in my faith AND my marriage!

This post is not to scare you away from having kids, but just to be aware. The enemy has clearly made point to destroy our family structures starting with marriage, we must be vigilant and be aware of his devices. 

As always if you need prayer or have questions I'm here. auntlala25 at gmail. 

Happy 8 year Anniversary my beloved! 

Thursday, November 19, 2015

I am the mom not you

Through out my life there have been many times where unsolicited advice has been overwhelming, frustrating,and hurtful.

There has been three times that it was all the three above.

1. When I got married
2. When I had a miscarriage
3. When I had Ethan

A few months ago I asked mothers to send me things that pertained to mothering their children.

Some responses were heartbreaking and made me mad to be honest. Some were your typical insensitive things that people say.

I started writing this post to give examples, but I could not continue because honestly I was getting too angry. Some of the moms I have talked to have really suffered in silence by what some others have called "help" or just saying their opinions because they "care". My heart hurts so bad for these women. 

I am a pretty bold person. I have had my moments where I have had to kindly put some one in their place. I also have had to be firm. Mothers need to feel empowered! These are our babies! Whether our children are born from the heart or the womb they are ours. 

So instead I am going to give my advice on how to handle these situations where you are feeling judged as a parent.

I'm not encouraging you to get rude or hateful because that does not solve anything, but, I am encouraging boldness. 

One: Understand that this is your child. You have every right as the parent to choose what you feel is best. Feel empowered as their mother. They are your responsibility not some one else’s. Your there when they are sick or not sleeping at night. Not the "Know-it-alls"

Two: Get rid of negativie/judgemental comments and/or people. I know sometimes these people are our family. But the truth is if they would like to be apart of you and your child's life they need to respect your choices. That goes for friends too. Especially on Facebook. Good grief people have some nerve when they are behind a keyboard. If they are not kind, helpful, or they are not making a positive impact in your life then I have found these steps helpful on dealing with Facebook:
  1. First delete offensive comment if it is hurtful or insulting. 
  2. Write a private message explaining that you do not appreciate the comment and that you really appreciate only positive  and encouraging comments not those that question my parenting. 
  3. If it happens again write this person and tell them how they made you feel and then warn them next you will have to remove them from Facebook.
  4. Next time... click the unfriend button.
When you are dealing with people face to face is more difficult because usually they are the ones that hurt most. Unfortunately it can be those closest to us.
  1.  Immediately or shortly after a comment or conversation happens that is offensive about your parenting simply tell this person "I am glad that worked for you, but I feel like this is a better fit for us" or "I feel this is the right things for our family" 
  2. If it happens again be a little firmer, "I know your trying to help, but I would really appreciate if you would respect my choices" 
  3. If these previous steps do not work and the person is not hearing you then I go to my short and to the point answer "My kid, my choice"  and I have had to repeat this statement a few times and sometimes to the same person (Smile) 
  4. If you continue to be disrespected or questioned, there is no change...then I would suggest limiting your time with this person or maybe start re-evaluating if you need this person to be apart of your life. 
Not everyone is going to like or approve of our choices but they are not the parents. We are. I hope I am not coming across mean, but I think we have too much negative in life without other poeple judging the others parenting. You may let one person have several chances to change but that is up to you and your family and is definitely  per situation.

Unless the child is neglected or being abused than we need to be accepting and LOVE each other. I know several mom's that I probably would not make the same choices they have but I love them and I KNOW they love their children. 

If your still reading this book (smile) know that I encourage you to surround your self with encouraging people, and maybe find a seasoned parent that will help you if you have a question without judgement. It is OKAY to ask questions! 

Also, know your facts. Make sure you are educated in what choices you make. Do the best you can. Our children deserve it. 

There may be a part two to this... I do not know. We will see! 

Signed a formula feeding, disposable diaper using, store bought baby food feeding, co-sleeping, vaccinating, non-crying it out, loving, awesome momma!

Monday, November 2, 2015

It was not supposed to be this way

I am one of the 15% of women that has been diagnosed with postpartum depression.

Over the last few years there have been  some very hard seasons of life.

One of those hard seasons was infertility which was a hot topic here on the blog.

We lost our baby, Hope.

After four years of trying to get pregnant it happened! We conceived without any help of medicine... our miracle baby.

The pregnancy was pretty uneventful. Worked hard on keeping my sugar levels down.

I just thought finally, I get my hearts desire. Ethan had been growing very fast. At my 36 week ultrasound they were saying he was close to 11lbs. On September 14th in the evening Ethan wasn't moving much. It had me very  worried. The next morning I was scheduled to be checked again because of his rapid growth. At the ultrasound Ethan was not moving but his heartbeat was strong. Long story short emergency cesarean, Ethan went to NICU for 3 weeks. I did not get to hold him until he was a week old. I had to leave him every night. I felt so robbed, this was not supposed to happen this way.

Fist time I held Ethan
Hands down the most awful time in my life.

After Ethan was 8 weeks old I returned to work. It was so difficult. We had just finished moving unexpectedly. One of my dear friend passed away right before Ethan was born, it was just starting to settle in.

I started having anxiety attacks, I was not happy. I was only happy with Ethan. I felt so down. I could not function in my job adequately. I really only had energy to take care of Ethan and that was all I could handle.

When Ethan was born I had stopped counseling with my therapist simply because there was so much going on I was not able to find a good time.

After talking to Josh we decided I needed to talk to my Doctor and contact my therapist.

After talking to my doctor and therapist I was diagnosed with Postpartum Depression.

I was so frustrated with myself. When you become a mom its like as a women you put so much pressure on yourself.

Honestly I felt like a failure.

It was decided it was best for me to take some time off work and concentrate on getting better and be a good mommy to E. (Just a side note I was also put on two different medications to combat this)

After a few therapy sessions and much prayer I started to get stronger. I realized I do not have to explain myself if I cannot, I do not have to be super women. My job was only to be the best mommy I could be, by working on myself I was doing that. I learned to be kind to myself. I had went through something traumatic, it was okay to feel the way I felt.

I have not really shared my struggle. Or how depressed I was. It has been a very personal time of growth. Emotionally and spiritually.

But I am not ashamed or embarrassed. God has used these trails to further my testimony and hopefully help someone else.

God is faithful, I have never felt more strong and free from the past then I do now.
On my 30th birthday 
Listen, do not let the enemy keep you isolated. You are not alone. Even if your dealing with depression or anxiety...do not be ashamed. Talk to some one. Don't fight it alone.

Sorry this post is so long, but I wanted to share my story.

And continue to keep things real. As always I'm here if you need prayer or to talk. Shoot me an email auntlala25 at Gmail.

For more information on postpartum depression go to http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/postpartum-depression-facts/index.shtml

Saturday, October 31, 2015

To every season turn turn turn

Here we are at the beginning of the holiday season! Time is just zooming around right along with my boy who zooming everywhere walking...

Change is tough. Really tough... But I am writing about change on the tail end of my season of change.

We have settled into our new home, new roles, and a different life than we had known before our boy.

It is much easier to say "everything is going well" now that we have been doing this for more than a year. I cannot believe I just typed that!

As a family we have made some difficult decisions on the behalf of Ethan and what is best for him. As of May of this year we decided it was best for me to stay home with Ethan for the time being. We have had to make sacrifices and our budget is extremely tight. It was also a great fit for me. 

After having Ethan I had some serious Postpartum Depression. But that is for another post... 

This last year has been amazing, stressful, but there has just been so much love. 

Traveling through a new season in our marriage, new season in our family immediate and extended. 

God takes us through these seasons I feel for different reasons. 

1. To draw him closer to him
2. To cause growth in you
3. To propel/prepare you to your next "job" or place in your life. 

I am so incredibly thankful for my boys. My big one and little one. 

I know this season is not forever, and I will be returning to work eventually... we will go through another transition period. 

There is so much I want to just pour out... So much self searching I am doing right now. Probably because I am 30 now!! YES I AM 30! How did that happen? I have no idea. 

I am excited about 30. 30 holds so much. My E growing and maybe he will be joined by a sibling (Only God knows that one), Watching my family grow and get older. Hopefully buying a house. 

God has really been showing me things about myself and directing in a different way than I thought he would. But I am trusting him to open the doors he wants me to walk through, guiding my steps. 

I am excited to say that I am ready to start blogging again! I loved it but when Ethan came along there was just so much we went through I could not concentrate. 

But I am back! And look forward to getting back to writing! 

My baby turned one! Yo Gabba Gabba style! Excuse my hubby's goofy grin! He makes me laugh!

See you soon,

Friday, May 15, 2015

But God...

I cannot believe it has been so long since I have wrote on this blog. At one time I look forward to writing in this blog every single day. But boy has life changed.

Today I celebrate the fact that God had other plans for my life then what I actually thought or was told.

when I was 15 I was told that I would probably never be able to have children naturally.

Then 3 years ago exactly today my biggest dream of having a child I thought was gone forever. Josh and I suffered a loss a very surprising loss. we made it through that with God's grace and strength and I was able to gain friendships through this tragedy that I never thought I would. Hopefully by sharing my testimony through that trying time somebody was touch or encourage through Christ and our testimony. We think about Hope often but somehow our wounds and grief have subsided with the love and gift that we have with Ethan. We haven't forgot about our angel in heaven but are continuing to celebrate life here on earth.

This morning I was reminded by an app on my phone 2 years ago exactly today God spoke to me through a complete stranger. This stranger had no idea that may 15th held such a hold on my heart. As I walked by a bus at the school I was working at I was stopped by the bus driver who then told me that God told her to tell me that he sees my heart and he seesbmy desires and then I would have what I desired and that everything is well. This was in 2013.
you can read my post about that day here with more detail:


Then exactly one year ago today I found out that my miracle was going to be a little boy! Josh and I were absolutely ecstatic! it was a day of healing. Through my pregnancy my heart was restored and pulled away from grief and more toward life.

So today May 15 2015 I am celebrating with my little boy Ethan he is 8 months old today!

I'm writing this today to encourage someone, someone that needs a miracle, who's at the end of the rope, who needs to know that God is still God and he is big enough to handle any situation. Doctors told me I wouldn't have a child, I told myself at times I would not have a child, BUT GOD had different plans.

Be encouraged my friends my love to you all!

          My eight month old miracle

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Thoughts on what it means to be a Wife

Becoming a mom has only showed me more the role in a woman's life. Ladies we have a big job. A big job. Yes, dads-husbands-men have major roles too, but as I get older I see more and more how the mom-wife-woman are the glue.  This post is really written to the wives... just some thoughts

When I was younger when someone  mentioned the traditional role of a wife I would cringe. Me? "Submit" to a man? I had a very narrow view of what a traditional life was. As a modern woman that is independent and was raised to know my own mind, not only know and respect myself but that it was okay to voice it.

Then I got married. As the years have passed I've learned that my role as a wife, now a mother is SO much more than I could see through my "Ms. Independent" eyes.

And the LORD God said, "It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him a helper meet for him." (Genesis 2:18)

… man was not created for the sake of the woman, but woman for the sake of the man; (1 Corinthians 11:9)

I had a trying time as a single woman looking at these scriptures. 
NO man was going to be over me!

In all honesty the main problem is that is hit a nerve. I felt like every teacher that talked about this and even God was saying I was not as important. 

But you see that is not God's meaning at all... 

Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her, (Ephesians 5:25)

Then I let these above scriptures sink in...

Genesis tells me that I was created to be a help mate. God was entrusting me to work with him to help my husband. 

1 Corinthians tells me that I was made for his (my husbands) sake. I was created because God knew how important I would be to my husband. God knew that as a wife my calling , my purpose is to help my mate, for HIS sake I was made. 

Then once my husband has me as his wife he supposed to love and cherish me as Christ loved the church... wow. Look at all Christ did/does for us. 

That is a pretty important role if you ask me. God never once asked me to give up my wants or dreams, he never says I'm less than... Woman was made from Adams side. To stand beside, lean on each other.

Ladies I know we get overwhelmed a frustrated... but we got this. We are the glue in the family. But what an honor to be the one who loves, helps, guides our families.  

Then I became a mother.... that post is for another day

Aunt LaLa

**I know that some marriages do operate in a healthy manner and not every marriage apply biblical principals. Some spouses are the only Christian in the home... I know there are so many different scenarios that could be going on. My heart hurts for you. I'm praying for these marriages. As always I'm here if I can pray with you about anything.**

Friday, January 9, 2015

Hello, Hello, you say Good-bye I say hello

Good bye..
...to the year I received the greatest gift on this earth besides Christ.
...to the anxiety that came with being pregnant with my miracle.
...to my college career
...to our family of two
...to our doggie, Pixel
...East Tennessee Children's Hospital
...plans that did not work out
                                                          ...feeling my baby in my belly


...my baby boy Ethan
...to many many first
...to finding a better home
...to a family of 3 now
...to new beginnings
...to changes
...to growing closer to God
...to Ethan
....a new job (maybe)
...to new plans
...to changes in Aunt LaLa
Hope you all enjoyed your holidays!!
Aunt LaLa