Relearning Lessons

The beginning of last week was rough.

We had a busy weekend so baby Connor slept all day Sunday. That’s not an exaggeration. He barely woke up to eat every few hours but those eyes stayed closed all day long. So, of course, he was up partying all night Sunday night. I even took him to our guest room so Jonathan could sleep because I figured at least one of us should get some sleep.

Monday morning, we were supposed to get up and head to Dallas for Connor’s first visit to Children’s. Since SO many people donated to Gold Network’s prize closet fundraiser in Sophie’s name, we wanted to go help deliver all of the goodies and show Connor where his sister was so brave. However, after him not sleeping, we decided putting him in the car for two hours just wasn’t what was best for him. And I was so bummed. I wanted to go so badly. We haven’t been to visit since Sophie’s birthday in March and I just really wanted to go. I know there will be other trips when he’s older and we’ll take him soon and it’ll be great. I was still just disappointed. With Connor’s birth at the beginning of September, I didn’t get to participate in any Childhood Cancer Awareness Month events so I wanted to do this for her…and for me honestly. But we didn’t, and I was sad.

That sad carried into a long Monday at home alone with a very fussy and clingy baby. You’d think after partying all of Sunday night that he’d sleep a lot on Monday? Not so much. He was awake and wanting to be help from 10AM until about 4 when he took a 40 minute nap and then it was back to being fussy and clingy.

So, you’re thinking that means he must’ve slept so much on Monday night right?


He slept in basically 90 minute intervals and was awake for an hour in between those intervals with gas and wanting to use me as a chew toy and pacifier. It was rough.

Tuesday dawned and we started our day with him peeing all over his own face and my bed because…mom keeps forgetting she has a little boy this time. Then there was an up the back blowout and so much spit up. Like the thick, sticky spit up. He also barely let us put him down and mainly wanted me.

And I was frustrated.

While I am so incredibly thankful for the gift of my sweet son-knowing how short life can be, how precious it is, and how hard we tried to get him here. So thankful. I love him so much and am so obsessed with him. But I was still frustrated. Its hard being in the throws of postpartum hormones and the things that come with that. For me it’s constant hot flashing, dry skin, breakouts, neck and back aches from nursing A LOT, hormone headaches, and sore breasts from, again nursing A LOT. (For real-this kid nurses 35 hours a day I swear.) It’s hard for me relearning kind of how to be a mom. I haven’t had a newborn in almost 5 years and I haven’t ‘mommed’ anyone since January 4, 2018. So it’s hard momming a new baby while grieving his sister. And being tired is just hard for anyone but I think especially for a new mom.

Connor is way more of a mama’s baby than Sophie was. Soph was independent from day one-perfectly happy in the swing or bassinet by herself. Connor on the other hand wants to be held and cuddled. He wants me 90% of the time. My heart loves it-God knew my heart needed a cuddly baby that loves me as much as I love him. It does get tiring though never getting a break.

But-God stepped into my chaos in the form of my husband.

Jonathan walked in the door Tuesday evening, took one look at me…walking around the living room with a fussy baby that had just projectile spit all over me. My face must’ve looked a bit scary because he said ‘Why don’t you give me the baby, leave a bottle with me, and go get an uninterrupted workout and a hot shower’

Bless that man.

He knew he was in for an hour of a fussy baby that wanted me and hates the bottle. He knew he’d probably be bouncing and shushing him. But he loves him and he loves me and he knew I needed that hour. Plus-he doesn’t get near enough cuddles so obviously he could care less if he got fussy cuddles as long as there were cuddles to be had. And guess what?

We all survived and hit the reset button.

I got a great, sweaty workout in a AND a hot shower. Jonathan got some much needed one on one time and cuddles with Connor. And Connor…well, he did begrudgingly accept 4oz of milk from a bottle and fell asleep in his daddy’s arms.

I instantly felt better.

We ended up getting great sleep that night.

And the rest of the week has carried on uneventfully.

We are parenting. We are grieving.

I wish my girl was here for it so much….but I sure do Love these two boys and our imperfect life together.

To anyone that feels like it’s not worth it to go on…

Let me start this post by saying, I am not suicidal…I have never been suicidal. I do, however, know what is feels like to want to die. Which is entirely different.

Holding my child after she was gone…I wanted to go too….to have a nurse pump me full or morphine and just drift away with her. Seeing her in a casket…I wanted to be in it with her…holding her forever. Going to her grave…I’ve wanted to be in Heaven with her….to just die right there and dissolve into the ground.

I get it.

Trust me I get what it’s like to not know how to keep living your life and to just want it all to be over. The brokenness of this world and the people in it. I get what it feels like to be on your couch for days on end and even the smallest tasks like answering your phone or getting food feel like exhausting work.

Death. Pain. Illness. Grief. Loss. Suffering. Unfairness. Evil. Greed. Hate. Rage.

If you let them, they’ll all take over your brain and your heart. You want it to end and to be somewhere that those things don’t exist.

I’ve seen it manifest in my personal life through family. A great aunt who lost a daughter at 2weeks old and couldn’t recover from it so she decided to end it. A great uncle who couldn’t cope with all the brokenness and strain this world offered so he left it all behind. A kind hearted man who couldn’t face more chemo for the cancer eating his body away so he took it into his own hands. Each with their own struggle that I can’t and won’t judge…they did what they did and it’s between them and the Lord.

Even closer I’ve walked with a sister that has struggled with mental health for most of her life and who constantly is aware of her depression and suicidal tendencies. Her hormones tell her she’s crazy and inadequate. Her brain and memory fail her constantly. She feels things in a big way and they overtake her often.

But she keeps swimming.

We all keep swimming.

We long to be away from this world where all the bad seems to rule. Leaving it on our own terms seems to be so much easier.

You see, for me, that’s not the answer, friends.

For me, its medication that helps slow things down. It’s counseling to express my grief and pain in a safe space with someone I trust that will tell me hard things but who also will protect me if she sees me going down a destructive path. It’s a marriage where we are honest with each other about how we feel and what we need…even when it’s hard. It’s exercise and yoga to get my blood pumping and productivity flowing. It’s outlets like doodling, writing, reading, and whatever feels fun instead of oppressive. It’s choosing to work in an environment that is flexible even if it’s less money because it’s good for me right now. It’s a bible study group that I can be open with on good and bad days. It’s a Life Group that constantly lifts us, loves us, and supports us. It’s a church family that truly is family. It’s friendships that are honest and real. It’s prayer-lots and lots of prayer for help and grace and wisdom.

Does my approach to my personal grief and mental health apply to everyone?

Is the the best answer?

Am I the greatest of all?

Absolutely not.

I’m simply saying that, if you’re in that place where it feels like ending your life is your only option…it doesn’t have to be.

You have people that love you.

You have a BIG GOD that loves you in BIG WAYS if you’d open yourself to Him.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline


**Disclaimer-these are my opinions, only and my personal experiences and beliefs. I would never presume to judge others for how they deal with the pain in their lives. We all live uniquely on this planet the best way we can. And those who have felt no other way out than suicide…that decision was a result of brokenness and mental Illness and it’s between them and God. My prayer is that the Lord would fill hearts that see a need to end their lives and that He would change things for them and show them ending it isn’t the only option And that He’ll come soon and heal us all!

#SophieTheBrave #DomoreforSoph #GodisBigger #OneDayCloser #childhoodcancerawareness #cancermom #lymphomasucks #childloss #lossmom #grief #suicideprevention #mentalhealth #1in4