Wednesday, June 20, 2012

I wish I had my video camera...

... but I did take some film in my mind and my little heart. Sometimes we have moments in our life that we wish we could capture and replay over and over. Sometimes we have inspirations from the Holy Spirit that we wish we could share in the same way the Lord shared them with us. And sometimes we just have a crazy moment that would mean nothing to you, but means everything to me. Tonight we gave up on cooking (after thinking I may be in labor soon) and went to the Cracker Barrel with the boys. It was super fun. Just our little family... fried chicken, peg board games, biscuits and some awesome sweet tea. It was peaceful and our boys were so well behaved, as they always are. On our ride home, we put on one of our favorite songs... Lady Antebellum's Own the Night. We have a tradition now where the moment the song comes on, we just start jamming away... everyone is clapping, everyone is singing (or at least trying to) and everyone is giggling.

For some people it may have just looked a bunch of crazies being crazy in the car... for me it was a sign that we are blessed. We are made happy by simple things. And we have a great time together... we have joy... just like God calls us to. We are a family just trying to make it by throwing joy into our daily lives... however we can. I wish I had that video camera. But, even though I didn't, I had the reassurance tonight that all is well... in the midst of waiting on a baby, making tough decisions, having the troubles of the world at our feet, being exhausted, and the list goes on... all is well... we have one another. God is good. All the time.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

I promise to not forget...

I know... the picture above doesn't look real. Just wait till I move my hands... the big watermelon will fall right to the floor. Ha. Just kidding. That is really my belly. Outrageous.

Always together. Always smiling. They must have good parents. ;)

Our family beach trip to Daytona at the beginning of May. No trips this summer... baby is coming!

And below... my three studs. I am a blessed woman!

As we near the end of this pregnancy, I am promising myself to not forget so many things... the best way to do that is to write them down.

First, I promise not to forget this pregnancy in all its glory, but mostly in all its sufferings and sacrifices. Those sacrifices are so important to me and were offered for so many very important things... things that are so close to my heart. One of the best things I have found about being Catholic actually is the redemptive suffering. There is never suffering for no reason at all. It always has a purpose. So, for all those people and circumstances in my heart... especially my family, the sweet souls entrusted to me, my friends on the verge of divorce, the fidelity of priests, those preparing for marriage and those people who are suffering chronically. These sufferings were used for you. I will not forget the terrible morning sickness, all the mornings I could not stand up in the shower, the awful headaches and vertigo, not being able to get around as quickly, the numb spot in my back, and ohhh goodness gracious... those terrible, horrible, no good restless legs, which left me awake many many nights. It was all worth it. (Let's not mention labor and delivery yet!)

Second, I don't want to forget what my life was like with just 2 little boys. I have never learned more... about how to let go, about how to create an adventure out of nothing, and about how much boys just adore their mom. I have never had more fun watching two boys at such a young age become the best of friends. I would not trade it for anything. You can see from the pictures above that they are the most beautiful (OK, handsome) little guys in the world. I love them with my very core. I spend all day and every day with them and wouldn't trade being a stay at home mom of two little boys for anything... even in the midst of the toilet water everywhere, the dirt, the wrestling, the jumping, the sword fights, the blocks, the forts, and of course, the dance parties. I have had the time of my life with two precious boys. Will there be another boy? Likely. And the testosterone will just increase and I will learn so much more... and if a girl... well, that's another story for another day, but I would gladly welcome big pink bows in my house any day!

Lastly, I will never forget the uncomplaining, selfless, every day love, support and presence of my amazing husband. I know now why so many women cut off their fertility... it's because they don't have a real man to be there with them. It is in my husband that I find the hope and joy in my day. He does everything in his power to make my life easier every day. (And I try to so hard to do the same). He has let me sleep in countless mornings, has made me breakfasts that I can get down, he has come home early to bathe the kids, get them to bed, do dishes and then head back to work. Then, not to mention him rubbing my legs through the night so I can attempt to sleep. He has managed to do a ton of research to find just about any supplement that would help any and all of my ailments I have had. He has literally worked his butt off for our family. He has been fixing our cars, and doing countless nesting jobs... even the silly ones. And in the meantime, he has taught me how to always keep disciplining our kids at the forefront and he has managed to spend much time playing hard with the boys... since this big pregnant mama can no longer wear them out. He is quite a man. I love him.

So, cheers, to this pregnancy. And may there be many more! For HIS glory if He wills.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Prayer after Communion

I didn't know who wrote this prayer until tonight, but I was curious, so I checked it out. St. Richard of Chichester wrote it. I was taught this prayer in high school by Fr. Lopez. He had us memorize the prayer and he suggested that we pray it each and every time we kneel down after receiving the Eucharist. So, from high school on, that is what I have done. I also had all of my students memorize it. And now, I even pray the prayer aloud for Gabriel to hear when we kneel down after communion...

Thanks be to thee, my Lord Jesus Christ, for all the blessings you have given to me; for all the pains and insults you have borne for me. Oh, Most Merciful Redeemer, Friend and Brother, may I know thee more clearly, love thee more dearly and follow thee more nearly. Amen. 

If only I could've started to write a book years ago on this prayer and the sentiments it brings after each reception of the Holy Eucharist. Each week the prayer has meant so many different things. Some weeks, I could just cry from sheer joy when I pray the first part, thanking Christ for the blessings in my life. There are other weeks where I can not even pray the second part without tears streaming down my face... because there are things that Christ has surely given that are very difficult and very sanctifying. And then there are weeks where I love the end, when we ask him to allow us to love him more, to follow him closer, and we call him different names... Redeemer, Friend, Brother... all three so different, but so true... especially in different moments of our faith walk.

So, I share this with you, so you can learn it. It is a powerful prayer for me and I am so grateful that this humble man from Chichester wrote it and Fr. Lopez had us learn it.

As I prayed it this past week I was overwhelmed with joy, thinking about bringing a child into the world soon. A new soul, a new little face, a new personality to just make everything in my life more full! I was also overwhelmed with exhaustion while I thanked Christ for all the pains he had granted me... pregnancy is no walk in the park. It has been a tough go this time... the vertigo, the heartburn, the back pain, the restless legs, the lack of sleep, the discomfort, the moods. All completely sanctifying. But, so hard.

What I realized recently is that we first thank Him in the prayer for the blessings and then for the pain... and in the end when we beg to love Him more, we find that it is BOTH, the blessings and the pain that allow us to love Him more. Really, for me, the perfect prayer.

Friday, June 1, 2012

this place isn't so bad...

Hey Little Peanut,

I have been thinking of you so much the past two days. Your grandparents were generous enough to take your brothers to Atlanta and I have had much time to myself... to clean, organize, and get ready for you. I have been praying for you. I have been wondering about you. And I have been overwhelmed with the emotion of joy. I get to bring you home. I get to introduce you to an amazing man, your father. I get to introduce you to the two sweetest brothers you will ever hope or wish for. And lastly, I get to hold you in my arms and tell you that, "Hey, it's me, your mom. I suffered so much for you. And you were so worth it. You're here. And I am here. And I am totally yours because God has called me to this beautiful vocation to give myself to you for love of Him." Someone asked me why I want "these kids" if there is so much suffering involved. I am at a loss of words... any person who knows the love of God would see that the joy far outweighs the tough part. I can not explain the feeling of peace, the intense joy, the excitement that a parent gets thinking about bringing another child into the world. It's an eternal soul... you, my sweet child, will always exist because of the love of our Great God. This place isn't so bad... as much as the media shows us that things are falling apart... I promise you that we will keep you safe and teach you the love of God. Our little domestic church we are building in our home is far from perfect, but we will teach you to pray, we will teach you to love your siblings,  we will have dance parties, we will have fun, we will teach you to laugh, we will eat dinner together, we will celebrate life... and I am so excited to teach you all this. God is good to allow someone else to join us on this roller coaster ride they call life. These boys I live with right now are pretty amazing. You won't be disappointed. We are going to love you a lot. I am so excited. OK, I am almost ready for you. Don't stay in there too much longer. You are getting kinda heavy. I love you.

Your Mommy