Early Days of Motherhood

I write this today as the baby of the house is sleeping, the 2 older kids are at school this morning, the washer is going, dinner is in the crock pot, but the sink still has breakfast dishes.

I’ve learned I need to take my time, to think, to breath, to keep my sanity.

We had our kids young, close together and it was awesome, it was exhausting!

I gave birth to our first child, almost 6 years ago, I was pregnant with our second child at her first birthday. I finally stopped nursing the first one when I pregnant and so sick I didn’t have enough energy to feed 2 babies. When, the second child was born, we had 2 babies! A newborn and a 19 month old. After that craziness, we took a little tiny break and waited until the youngest was 2 before I got pregnant with our 3rd child. The older 2 were potty trained, slept through the night and were acting a little older. Then, we started all over again!!

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This was all in the mix of building our house, me having a hundred side jobs, taking care of a very sick grandma, family things, Mark getting a promotion at work with a lot of new responsibilities, me having a lot of health problems, being newlyweds, trying to help at church, and trying (but usually failing) at keeping God at the center of our house.

It was crazy! Some days I thought I would loose my mind before 9 am, I would count down the hours until Mark got home to be my back up. I would do my best to get through the days until bedtime, then get up the next morning and do it all over again! Exhausting!

I have NO REGRETS!

I miss those baby days, the first time I saw my child, when my babies nursed ALL the time, the first time they smiled at me, the little baby grunts all through the night, how they always smelt good, how they snuggled, how they could sleep in my arms, the tiny diapers. Will never forget their first months of life!

I write this post not to complain, not to have a pitty party, but to remember that those first years as an adult, wife, mom were HARD! My posts are mainly for my kids and maybe someday they will feel like I did. Maybe they will be so exhausted someday and need hope. That is what this post is for. To say those 5 years were hard, but we made it! I lived to tell the story! 🙂  Maybe my kids remember me saying “mommy is going to go crazy” or they can remember when I should have more patience with them. I am human!  I have told my kids, husband, parents “sorry” more time than I can count!

I know hard days are not a thing of the past ( I mean, we have 3 kids that will all turn into teens and then adults!), but I know there are so many great days ahead too! I was telling a friend this weekend that I finally feel like we’ve gotten to the point where I can breath again! With the youngest being 15 months now, she sleeps through the night, she is done nursing, she acts more like a toddler now. While she keeps me on my toes and likes to be with me all waking hours of the day 🙂 she is getting a little more independent.

I can drink my morning coffee with only warming it up a few times and not the 20 times like before, or finding my coffee cup in the microwave at lunch, then finding my lunch in the microwave at dinner (yes, that really happened!) I am learning how to slow down and enjoy my days. Not looking at them as another day to count down the hours!

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So, take a deep breath and remember it WILL get better! It will be over before you know it and you will miss those days!

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”  Philippians 4:12

Success

Last week, our sermon was “Success: God’s View”  and it really got me thinking! Thinking about the worldly views on success. It amazes me how much different scripture is compared to how the world views success! The Bible says to seek and trust Jesus! The world tells us to have more things!

I don’t think God wants us to be poor, he wants us to enjoy the life he has given us. I’m not gonna lie… I love my vacations, new clothes, and things, BUT they can’t BE our god! We can’t live for things! Those things won’t last!

A question that was asked, “who wrote your definition of success?”  Do you even remember what your definition is? Or are you just going through the motions? The rat race of life? I ask myself these questions and I have to really think what my goals are for me and my family! I have to remember what my focus is

After thinking about success, I remembered that in high school I had to write a paper on success. I was so curious on what I had said about 10 years earlier.

Luckily I found it…

Society views success in many different ways and people have different views on how to become successful.  People have different goals in life and different things they want to accomplish in life to be successful in their eyes.  There are some common stereotypes for successful people.  Many Americans believe that successful people have a high level of education and they have a lot of money.

I’m sure many high school students hear their teachers drilling in their head about how important education is in regards to whether or not you will be something in life.  Many teachers preach about how you must do your best in high school because college is much harder and we all need to be prepared.  They tell us we need to do well in college to be successful.  While we know they are just looking out for us and trying to be good teachers, some of us don’t plan to go to college, but wish to further our education in other ways.  Colleges also try to find a way to let all high school students know that in order to have a successful life you need to go to their college.  They find many ways of doing this, I receive (on average) three or four letters or brochures every week telling me how I need to get a good education and I should go to their school.  There seems to be at least two or three college representatives at school every week.  Colleges find ways to give us information through our teachers and sometimes even come in to talk to us. Colleges have many ways of trying to reach us high school students and they are all competing in trying to tell us that we need to come to their school because they have what we need to make us successful in life.  The main reason education and college is forced on high school students is because society sends the message that Americans need to have money to have anything in life.

Having money is another thing that society associates with success.  For some people they just assume that if you are going to be successful you must have a large amount of money.  If you look at famous actors and actresses most people would say that they were very successful people.  Would you think they were as successful if they still had their talent but lived like you and I?  They would still be considered as the middle working class.  The fact that they have more money puts them at a higher social class and that makes people believe that they are more successful than the middle working class.  Another example would be if you were driving down the road and you saw Bill Gates’ house then saw a trailer next to it.  Would you be more impressed by Bill Gates’ house or the trailer?  Anyone would much rather go to Bill Gates’ house.  You can see how society has trained us to think the same close minded way about what it means to be successful.

True success has to be measured by accomplishing your own goals.  Not everyone will become Bill Gates and live in a mansion, but we can still be successful in our own eyes by accomplishing our goals and leading a happy and fulfilled life.  Being successful does not have to mean that you earn a high level of education or become a millionaire.  Neil Simon said, “Money brings some happiness. But after a certain point, it just brings more money.”  This is so true because once you have so much money and you are used to it, you are not as excited about it any more; it does not bring anymore happiness. You could be the riches person on earth and still be unhappy and miserable with your life.  I wouldn’t call that a successful life at all.  “The purpose of your time on earth is not primarily about acquiring possessions, attaining status, achieving success.” Those are secondary issues.  Life is all about love and developing relationships with God and other people.” (Rick Warren)  You should make the best of your life and live your life to the fullest.  Use all the talents God gave you and if he gave you a smart brain you should earn a high level of education and you could become wealthy, but we should not base success solely on that.  There are many different ways to be successful in your life.  You could have many children and become an excellent mother or volunteer in your community.  Too many times those types of people are over looked as successful.

To accomplish your own goals and be successful in life, remember have perseverance and self-discipline.  Self-discipline is pushing yourself to do your personal best every day even when you feel like giving up.  I am very thankful that my parents have taught me self-discipline.

Dear Mom and Dad,

Thank you for teaching me self-discipline.  You have shaped me into a hard working person.  I have been able to use these qualities in my life already to accomplish the goals that I have set and achieved.  I have used my self-discipline many times in school.  When I have had very difficult classes and feel like giving up, I persevere and continue to work hard.  When I was running I used my self-discipline.  I loved knowing that I could push myself and accomplish something, I felt that succeeded.   I know that my self-discipline will be very useful in life as I go through difficult and challenging times.  I will use that in my life to become successful.  Thank you for teaching me what I need to become successful.

Love,

Candiss

You must be a wise person, make good decisions to get to where you want to go in life.  Everyone makes mistakes in life, but if you make too many of them and too great of mistakes it will be harder to correct them and accomplish all of your goals, so absorb as much knowledge as you can to prevent this.  After you have achieve your goals you will have a feeling of accomplishment and it will bring you happiness.

Everyone has their own ideas of what they want to do to be successful and I have many of my own. My first goal is to go to Purdue North Central to earn an Associate of Science degree in nursing.  I want to become a registered nurse and work somewhere with babies.  I plan to marry my fiancé, Mark, and share my life with him.  Later, we plan on having children.  I hope that it will work out that I can stay home to raise our children, so I can devote my time to being the best mother I can be.  My goal is to work hard, but take time out of my busy life and have fun and to enjoy everything God created for us.  My ultimate goal is to be a good wife and mother and to raise my family in a good Christian home.

I probably won’t be famous or rich, but I can still be successful in life.  I might not be successful in the eyes of society.  If I work hard and accomplish my goals, I will be successful in my eyes.

 

As young, immature and clueless as I was back then, I seem to have about the same view on success as I do now. That was something that I felt strongly about then and I still do!

So, I need to remind myself what is my “personal definition of success.”

“What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?” Mark 8:36

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” Romans 12:2

That’s SUCCESS!