Sunday, March 27, 2011


There's something to be said for truly happy people. People who can see the good in something even when there really doesn't seem much good in it at all. I know one of these people. He's genuinely Happy. Give him a minute and he'll find the good in it all. He will worry about those who most would direct anger toward. His path is changed, he shrugs and presses. He takes a stituation that would leave most bitter, and finds the good. He resents no one. He blames no one and in the end, he's better because of it. This morning's message was on this exact thing. Joseph was much like this. He stuck it out. He found the good in a situtation that didn't have much good in it at all. His path changed, he shrugged, and pressed. He had much to whank about and yet didn't. He had much to leave him bitter, yet it didn't. He blamed no one and was better because of it. He knew God was ultimately in control. God uses people like this. I want to be one of these people. Happy.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

It's a Boy!!

"It's a Boy!" the doctor shouted after a long, hard labor that ended with me lying down behind a big curtain and my man next to me with a mushroom-type head cover on.

A Boy? No way. No way. That was all I could think as Patrick gave me a kiss on my forehead and began what would become his routine for each child, of following very, almost too, closely and watching every movement made with our newest addition. As I lay there alone on that table in this cold, bright place, all I could think of was the three words, It's a boy. Almost as quickly as that thought came, I was out and slowly waking in recovery. Alone again, behind a curtain, it all felt like a dream. Nurses were coming in and out and I could hardly remember the events of the last 7 hours. It didn't seem real. Slowly the day started coming back to me and I remembered...I had a boy. Wow. A boy. It didn't seem real.

The entire 9 months I had convinced myself it was a girl and in the process, I think I had convinced Patrick too although I knew he would love to have a little boy. You know, the football-throwing-fishing/hunting-buddy kind of boy. I had the same picture, only with a girl. My mom had two girls, my sister at this time had two girls. I knew girls. I grew up with many girl cousins. I had a brother but with him came two more sisters. I was having a girl. I was convinced. So much so, that I only pictured myself with a girl, I shopped for girl things, I picked out girl names, and I decorated our generic room in my mind with the new girl things I was going to add once she arrived.

No girl. It was a boy. In recovery, I still had not held him. In my groogy state, I had only seen him wrapped up head to foot with just a little nose and two eyes showing. It could have been a girl the way they presented him. I had not yet held him, I didn't know him, I couldn't picture him, I hadn't seen him. It was so unbelieveable. I didn't seem real.

Fast forward to today, knowing what I know now, 12 years later. "It's a boy!" would have had me grinning from ear to ear. Knowing what I know now, 12 years later. I would have anticipated the wonderful moments that come from having a boy, this boy in particular. Past all of the jumping, running, ball throwing, collarbone breaking, team cheering, air soft playing, hunting, fishing, there is a young man who is the neatest boy I know. He is very loving with his sisters, and they adore him. He watches out for them without being asked and he reads to them just because. They come to him when they are hurt or tired or want to be held and he always stops to do just that. He is tough on them and often keeps them in line. I never worry about my girls when Logan is at the helm. He is a great older brother to Cole. He is the most patient older brother I could imagine. He jokes with Cole, shares, plays around, and talks late into the night with him. 98% of the time, they are buds. He is the first one to jump out of the car to help me get in, the first one to grab a load out of my arms when he sees me coming and is the first one to help unload groceries from the car. He is the "man of the house," a responsiblity he has put on himself when Patrick is gone. He secures the garage at night, takes out trash, locks up doors, and checks on me. He has a hard time leaving if he knows I will be alone and is very quick to make sure I am ok. He loves to talk on his terms and I have learned the art of being quiet around him until he is ready. He still loves to be read to and prays daily for his family. He's got the funniest sense of humor and can take a joke better than anyone I know. He can laugh at himself, and unless losing a board game, does not take himself very seriously at all. He needs hugs more than he lets on and loves to weekly measure his growth by is-he-taller-than-his-mom-yet. He challenges me daily to be a better wife and mother because I know he is watching, and if what "they" say is true, he will look for someone like me one day.

Going back to that day in recovery. Knowing what I know now. I would shout at the top of my lungs, "It's a Boy!"

Happy #12 Pickle.

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Terrible 12s?

"Oh, hang on, that's a Terrible age!" This comment from a lady last week in Walmart after asking the age of my oldest son, Logan. I had told her, with a nostalgic smile, that he would be 12 on St. Patrick's Day. I still remember being sad after her hasty response as she pushed up in line. I was not surprised though; I have heard that since he turned two. "Oh, the Terrible Two's!" Then came the Terrible Three's, followed by each age that a stranger, friend, or family member deemed to be THE miserable, Terrible golden age. Apparently, if I believed every stranger that offered up their opinion in Walmart, there is NO good age of a child.

I don't buy it. I just don't. My children are not perfect by any stretch of anyone's imagination but I can't think of any time that I would characterize their life by the word Terrible...that in and of itself is terrible. I hate it when I hear people who buy into this worldly way of thinking of children at any age. We have had seasons of their younger lives that I remember as being more challenging then others, children who had moments that seemed more baffling than others, and stages that required more of me than others, but never would I use the word Terrible to describe this time with my children.

You see, I believe these little ones to be gifts from God. Not all gifts are ones that are opened and immediately playable. Most, just ask my husband, have signs that say, "Some assembly required." Some box contents require work to eventually enjoy what's inside. It is very much the same with our little ones. They are work. My work is challenging at times, exhausting at others, repetitive always, and worth every minute. Terrible? No. Not one minute of the past 12 years has been terrible. Not one minute.

Galatians 6:9 Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.

Logan came into my arms almost 12 years ago and I would never use the word Terrible to describe one moment of the time I have been given with this precious son. I want him growing up knowing this with all of his heart. Every moment with him, challenging or not, has been wonderful. As each age comes, I find myself saying, "Ok, THIS is my favorite age!"

Terrible 2s? 3s? 12s? I just don't buy into that lie. Our children's behavior does not have to shape how we see them. We are all sinners and fall short of God's standard. As I see it, it is my job to work through the behavior labeled as terrible and if I am diligent and purposeful, I will see fruit.

Proverbs 29:17 Correct your son, and he will give you comfort; He will also delight your soul.

Delightful 2s? Delightful 3s? Delightful 12s? Wow. Seems much more hopeful to me.