Full of Boys

Finding the adventure in the blues, greens and grays of life!

Learning from Friends (part 5 of 5) May 13, 2011

Filed under: Friends,mom — fullofboys @ 8:17 am
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Today is a little different because I am going to talk about 4 women who have been an amazing blessing to me as a mother. These ladies are my closest friends & the girls I know will be in my life 20 years later.

I talked yesterday about Mom Paine & I could not write about women who inspire me as a mother & not include her daughter, Christy. When I met Christy we were 5. We played outside all the time. I never imagined this person to be someone who would walk all of life with me but she has. She was the first person I ever told that I thought I was going to marry Heath & she was there when I said those vows in front of everyone. We have laughed a lot & cried lots of tears too. She has shown me that miles do not make a difference. We live at least a day’s drive away from each other. Yet, we make time to catch up on the phone almost weekly. On those phone calls we have cried together. We have laughed. We have prayed. In those conversations, there are no miles separating us. Through it all, she constantly teaches me the value of friendship! She has taught me that it is important to keep things open & honest & that motherhood is a journey that can be shared no matter the distance.

As a new mom, I was pretty nervous. Then, when I was pregnant for the 2nd time, we moved. As I moved away from my comfort zone & friends I was again nervous. But then I met, Leslie. I think the first time I met her I was sitting on a couch in a mom’s bible study & Joel threw up from a bottle he had just had. I was embarrassed. She remembers it & thought I was so calm the way I handled it. I think she might have been sleep deprived. J Regardless, we became friends. She was there when my mom was diagnosed with cancer a second time. She kept my children without reservation & she has been there for me ever since. She has cooked for me, listened to me & cheered me on when I thought I had to give up. She taught me that sometimes as moms we are given tough loads to carry, but with friends the journey can be made more manageable.

Soon around this same time, I met a woman that could make me laugh out loud…which was quite a feat. The first time I met Carmen she was pushing a stroller with a new baby boy. I cannot pinpoint the exact moment we became friends but it just seems as though she has been in my life ever since then in some fashion. Recently we were in a bible study together & since then I feel like we haven’t drifted apart. What I love about her is her ability to be honest & funny…sometimes at the same time. She has taught me that while at times motherhood can be an exhausting journey it can also hold humor & excitement.

Then, a few years ago, we made a big decision. We decided to go help launch a new church closer to where we lived. I drug my feet the entire time. I did not want to leave the friends I had made at my other church (Leslie & Carmen included!). I was reluctant to open up to anyone & yet, I was dying inside. I knew I needed a friend out here…a true friend that would walk though the craziness of life with boys. I met Rebekah & I quickly dismissed her as a possible friend. She was beautiful (& still is), she was classy & I really felt like I would be out of her league. Yet, she was a mom of all boys & over time we started to connect. The first time I went to her house I knew we would be friends. What I did not know were the secrets & stories we would share, the hours investing in each other & the ability to call her one of my best friends. She listens as I hash out my feelings, understands when I tell her a story about the boys & offers wise counsel when I am overwhelmed with choices. She has taught me that as a mom it is ok to have questions or concerns & that friends can help you navigate the rough terrain called motherhood.

I am a firm believer that friends make me heart happy. I believe God has been wonderful to me to bless me with amazing friends (many who I do not have time or space to list!). However, I am incredibly humbled that he has brought these women into my life & allowed me the opportunity to call them my closest friends. I think the most incredible thing to me is that these women are all able to walk through motherhood with me. Thank you girls for taking time to listen, invest & encourage me. I am a better mom for all you offer to me. Love you all!

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Sometimes to go forward April 15, 2009

Filed under: Uncategorized — fullofboys @ 8:43 pm
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Sometimes to go forward you have to go back to where you came from. I have to be honest with you all that I do not keep in touch with many of my high school friends. Maybe 2 or 3 I still talk to but that is it. The reason for this may or may not have had something to do with a boy, a break up and people taking sides. I chose to just not deal with the petty drama around those times and I moved on. Lately, Facebook and Myspace have had me evaluating those ‘friends’ as they often send friend requests. Sometimes I leave a friend request waiting for days or even weeks as I really try to decide if I am ready to let them into my virtual world.

Recently, the facebook world brought back into my life Marysol. Now, just to set the record straight, she missed a good portion of that drama and it was just distance and age (because in high school 2 years is like a decade) that separated us. She and her husband, DeWet, were the ones to lead the Cape to Cairo Challenge and currently reside in South Africa. However, they are in the states for a few weeks and I had the chance to squeeze in a lunch with her. I say squeeze because I know she wants to visit family and tons of people were pulling at her. I want to tell you that I learned new things about her while we sat for a little over an hour.

* Living in South Africa is not just a ‘job’ it is her home. She talks about it with possibilities and she has s park in her eye as she shares about how she would like to raise a family there.
* The people matter to her…and not just for a month to two. In fact, her exact words to me were ‘we want to work ourselves out of a job here’. She and her husband believe that their calling is to train the local people how to share the gospel and disciple other people.
*Humility emits from her as she shared with me how God continued to provide for them.
* Community is just as important there as it is here…maybe even more so. She tells me that while they have a vacuum it is rarely at their house. Instead it floats from one place to another so that everyone can use it. The same is true with a muffin tin. Imagine the relationships that are formed from that!

More importantly, I learned that it is ok to ‘go back’. Sometimes I get so caught up in the pain and let downs of life that I refuse to go back and see the joy and gifts that God has brought into my life. And it is just not high school but life in general. The baggage from life’s hurts and disappointments can weigh so heavy that I miss the great things that happened in those moments. The fact is, had that boy not come into my life and then been out of my life I would never had appreciated Heath and I would never have known who my true friends were. I would never have had to struggle with finding myself but I also would not be as confident as I am today. Sometimes you just have to ‘go back’ in order to realize that those moments are what took you forward.

What moments did you experience life’s hurts/pain and what did you gain ?

 

My confession June 6, 2008

Filed under: Faith,Me — fullofboys @ 6:35 am
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I have a confession. I struggle with being accepted. I actually think most people do, too. I think I struggle because I can not be perfect in every area of my life. I want to be the best wife, mom, friend, daughter, sister, volunteer….oh, the list could go on. But by being ALL of those things, I am unable to perfect just one. And sometimes it really stinks. Like when I go months between talking to friends because life is busy (Olivia) or when I don’t see my dad for more than a month even when he lives a little over an hour away.

The fact is that there are days when I think I can never measure up. I always knew that I felt this way but it has come into light so much more since starting the Dickson Campus (Man, this campus thing has caused me to look so much deeper in my heart!). When I came to Dickson, I was simply me. There were no titles attached, no ‘oh you serve here’ or ‘hey, you’re in mom’s group’. It was a fresh slate. I was excited at first and then I began to feel intimidated. There are some women I know who have known each other for years, years people! My thought was ‘how could I ever fit into that crowd?’.

I thought they were all too perfect, all too in control. They all smiled and nothing seemed wrong. Their kids were angels….mine are all boy, rowdiness and loudness rolled into big hearts and smiles. They had inside jokes and knew events that happened years ago in each other’s lives. I was on the outside. And it hurt. It hurt so bad that I told Heath we were going back to the main campus. I cried so hard as I learned to let go of the main campus and trust God with my heart, my future friendships.

Jeremiah 1:5 says “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, And before you were born I consecrated you; I have appointed you a prophet to the nations.”

What an encouraging verse to me, and I am sure Jeremiah felt the same way! God has a purpose for me. He has appointed me to bring Glory to Him…whether  it is at the main campus, the Dickson campus, another country or simply my backyard.

God not only created me, He knew me. I believe that when you create something (art, song, food, child) you become a little protective about it, at least I do. I began to rest in that verse anew. I realize that the Creator of the Universe created me, he created my heart, He could handle my fears and my tears. I also learned that in my time of loneliness God began to work in my heart. I began to allow my walls that were miles high to begin to fall, a little. I started to open up to a couple ladies. Somewhere along the first three months of this church, I found something unexpected. I found community, I found friends, I found girls that I can not imagine living without.

There are still days I am terrified to talk to them. There are still days they seem too perfect and I wonder how to measure up to them. I get scared. I still cry at times as I allow God to transform my heart. I have had to move from a person of independence to a huge dependence on the God who created me.  My confession remains, regardless of how much I allow God to work on my heart. I think what I am learning is perfection does not equal impact or community.

Do you struggle with this?