Rylee Recitation: Patrick Henry’s Speech

Rylee has been working hard the past few weeks to memorize the last paragraph of Patrick Henry’s famous speech. She still has a few parts to smooth out, but she’s made wonderful progress! We are so proud of her hard work.


Thankful Thursday 5/14/14

I am thankful God is in control. I am thankful that He ordains my days. Current trials are not here by chance, but chosen especially for me from His loving hand. He knows what I need to be refined.

I am thankful for the two Titus 2 women in my life. One is far away, one is closer. I count myself blessed to know each of them. And they take time out of their very busy lives of raising lots of children to answer my questions, pray for me, and just be a friend.

I am so thankful each time I hear Titus tell me “Love you!” in his adorable toddler voice and when little Zoe echoes his words too!

I am thankful for bacon and cheese — what a yummy way to get protein in your body!

I am thankful for new quilts and curtains … sunshine and freshly mowed grass. Cards in the mail, and curious toddlers. Kisses from my husband and his reassuring words and faithful prayers.I thank God for ant traps and coffee and rest.

I am thankful for wise women that minister to us younger ones (examples: Revive Our Hearts and Homewise Podcasts)

Number 5

The Lord has blessed us again. That’s right, we are now parents of five. My smallest child is warm and cozy in my womb and due to make an appearance sometime in December 2014. We are overjoyed at this news. I am thankful friends and family have been happy to receive the news from us. God has been merciful that this time around there’s been no negative comments whatsoever. 
With this news I had to stop my two most helpful herbal tinctures for my depression/anxiety. They aren’t safe for early pregnancy. I have already noticed a slight increase in my anxiety levels. I will get through it though. Thankfully, I can still take much of the other herbal tinctures and teas I was using. They are a big help to me and I am happy to receive them as God’s provision for this time in my life. 
Of course, my midwife from Zoe’s birth was on of the first persons I shared the news with. I was so excited to be able to use their care again. I can’t imagine going anywhere else and I have prayed since Zoe was born that if God were to bless me again that He would make an opening in Doran’s schedule for us. Our first appointment is at the end of the month and I cannot wait.
I am going into this pregnancy not in ideal health. I need to be in better physical shape. My last birth exhausted me. Which, yes, I know is normal. However, the exhaustion was much worse than the pain in my opinion. I can remember thinking that I didn’t have the stamina to go on and wondering how I would. Birth is the most intense thing I put my body through, and this time I intend to train for is. I am doing the MuTu workout program along with Blooma Yoga’s Prenatal Yoga. I also walk at least a mile every day (usually more). I’m praying the Lord will sustain me and allow me to keep most of this up to the end. 
So that is the news from here. Another sweet baby! What could be better?

7 Quick Takes

A few of my favorite bloggers do a weekly wrap up post called “7 Quick Takes.” I’ve decided to give it a go this week. Maybe it will become a regular post, who knows. 

The weather this week has been so back and forth. It is as if we are getting teased with little glimpses of Spring. Today it was gorgeous and in the 70s so I decided to tear all the plastic off the windows (we cover the windows with plastic in the winter to save on heating costs since our home is so old). I love how much brighter it is already. 

As normal, I feel completely behind on my gardens this year. I still have not started seeds and have just barely started to prepare beds. I am hopeful that I will be able to start seeds tomorrow. (Of course, that is about the 100th time I have told myself that so we shall see.)

We are a blended family, but that’s not all. The biological father of my oldest daughter lives in a different state than us! Thankfully, he and I work together to make sure she gets time with both families. It is always hard when shes away. Saturday she is leaving to go see him for a whole month. I already miss her so much just thinking of it! I’m so thankful she gets time with them though — it is something she needs. And I’m so thankful for technology — keeping in touch is made easier with texting, Skype, phone calls, etc. 

What I am reading: 
I am kind of all over the map currently. On Sundays Josh and I are reading 
Living for God’s Glory: An Introduction to Calvinism by Joel Beeke together. On weekdays we are trying to read My Life For Yours by Doug Wilson together. I’m also trying to keep up with pre-reading for AO Year 5. And, I’m reading The Living Page as well. 

We are working on transitioning Zoe to her crib. It isn’t easy, but we are bearing up and surviving it. Mercifully, each day it gets easier. I find that I am sleeping a lot better with her out of the bed, though I very much miss her snuggles. I’m glad she’s still in our room, just in a crib. 

Speaking of sleep, we have started turning our wifi off most nights as well as using black-out curtains to, well, black out our room. Both Josh and I have noticed improvements to our sleep, especially after cutting out the wifi. 

Tomorrow we plan to make our first entries into our nature journals. This will be our first year really keeping these. Rylee has been asking all week to make her entry. I spotted many Cardinals and Robins on our walks this week so I will probably attempt to draw one of those. I’m really looking forward to it! 

A Journey Toward Healing

As I have mentioned before, last year was a tough year. It was full of much stress. It was when I began to come face to face with the fact that something was off. I started to wonder, could I have some type of depression? My energy was non-existent, I struggled to get out of bed each day, all I wanted to do was sleep. Sure, I had my good days but this was the overwhelming norm. If I mentioned any of this I was often met with replies like, “Welcome to having kids!” or “Get used to it.” Implying what I was going through was normal for a busy homeschooling mama. But on random social media sites I would see mamas of many, that were much busier than me, enjoying their lives. Enjoying their families. I wanted that so badly … mostly because I had that joy before.
Going through times like this and not really knowing what is wrong with you isn’t easy. I often thought, am I just lazy? What is my problem? I felt hypocritical. I wanted to me a stay at home mama, I wanted to homeschool my kids, I begged God for these things while I was a single mama. He graciously gave me those things and this was how I responded? I was often ashamed of my behaviour. Shouldn’t Christians be joyful? Why am I complaining … I know I deserve worse as a sinner, so shouldn’t I be happy no matter what? These thoughts constantly swam in my mind. My relationship with God grew very distant. I was confused by everything.
During this time my relationship with my husband suffered tremendously. We became little more than room-mates. No, we didn’t fight constantly or yell … we just were. It was as if a numbness had overtaken our relationship. We still laughed occasionally, but mostly we just got through the day. If I couldn’t figure out what was going on with me or how to talk about it … how could I talk to him about it?
I longed for Ohio. I had convinced myself I just needed relationships. Since moving here I haven’t really made any close friendships. I have a lot of friends at church, but most live an hour or so away from where we are, so I am out of that loop except on Sundays. And, well we don’t do extracurriculars or anything like that. It isn’t in the budget. Since September, we have been a one car family, so traveling during the day isn’t an option anyway.
There were also plenty of family stressors happening. We are a blended family, which often times implies extra stress. Last year those implications showed themselves to be true multiple times. We also had a new baby last year. So as you can see all this plus post-pregnancy hormonal issues formed the perfect storm.
I can’t remember when I began to accept that I was most likely depressed in some form or another. It hasn’t been that long. I tried to help myself, but I really didn’t know how. Finally, a week ago I met with a local Herbalist. My intake appointment was 1.5 hours long and it was like an answered prayer. Yes, there are things wrong with me … I’m not just resigned to being miserable and tired forever because I’m a mom (as some people suggested). Better yet, she could offer me help. Walking out of that appointment was the happiest and most hopeful I had felt in a long time.
Now I am beginning the next step of the journey: healing. God is merciful. God is good. He never abandoned me. And while I may rightfully deserve death and Hell, He offers me grace and healing because of my Elder Brother, Jesus Christ.