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Semi-Unintentional Hiatus

My youngest is napping, my sleep-hating 3-year-old accidentally fell asleep during quiet time, and the two big girls are at after school activities. On any other day I would be loading kids to go get some more kids, but I find myself with a quiet house in a moment that is usually chaos. And I don't know what to do with myself! As a mother of young children you only dream of these moments, and when they come few and far between your brain just does back flips and circles and you bounce around seven different kid-free tasks, starting everything, finishing nothing and wasting the quiet. Today I am determined to sit in the silence, as odd and uncomfortable as it might be, and write.


Last August we celebrated Pepere’s (mom’s dad) life and him meeting Jesus. It was a bittersweet reunion of extended family.

Turns out I haven't had a break like this in 6 months if you look at the date of my last blog post. The last thing I wrote was all about the importance of rest. Then, we decided we didn't need a nanny anymore, and I haven't rested since. Ha! No, that's not (totally) true. That's not the only reason I stopped writing. Honestly, I was struggling with feeling inadequate. I let the Enemy get in my head. The thoughts of "Who are you to share your thoughts with these women?" and, "No one cares," or, "You're out of your league." Then my domain disappeared, and I took that as I sign it wasn't meant to be and easily gave up. I don't let my girls talk to themselves that way, so why do I think it's okay for me to bad mouth myself? These are the things we think don't seep over into our kids, but they do. They can absolutely sense negativity and poor self-worth from a young age.


Something I didn't consider much until recently is that my identity is in Christ. It's a somewhat odd thing to say and quite ambiguous. There are entire Bible studies on it. My oldest daughter is only 8, so I explain it with Psalm 139:14,

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well."

Any complaint about ourselves is an insult to our Maker. My oldest was having a tough time attending a chess class where she's the only girl and while she doesn't belong in the beginner class, some cocky little boys were making her feel inadequate in the advanced class. Instead of storming the halls and putting those little punks in their place I sent her the verse and explained that she is awesome, she was made awesome, and no one can tell her who she is except for God because he created her. And according to him she is wonderfully made and God's creation rocks, so she rocks. She went into the next chess class nervous, but confident and she didn't beat all the boys, but she did learn new skills and spoke up to be matched with someone her level. No one talked down to her that day, or she didn't hear it because she was meditating on the fact that she is beautifully and wonderfully made by God and he doesn't make mistakes. No one gets to tell her who she is, her identity is in Christ.


I know this, I teach my children this, I read these things in my Bible, but I had been hiding for six months. Then a friend- a sweet, Jesus-loving, encouraging friend- shared that she was inspired by the honesty in my writing. She said she could see my heart fully relies on Jesus and that I am teachable. I mess up, live through hard things, seek forgiveness, and unabashedly put it on the internet for all to see! It was the push I needed to get back on here. I'm humbled by my mistakes and learning as I go in motherhood, then sharing it with you, so you might feel less alone on this crazy ride. I'm not claiming to have it all figured out and spewing advice- I'm listening to God and sharing what He's doing in my life as a mom.


So after weeks of technologically challenged me trying to get my domain working again I was able to fix it in under five minutes after being encouraged by my friend. This semi-unintentional hiatus was probably for the best. Our family went through some changes (read: drama) that I needed to process. Then, we had a wonderful stream of visitors from September to November and we closed the year by overdoing it in the holidays in true Brooke fashion...one of these years I will get to December 26 and not resent baby Jesus. I'm joking, I'm joking- but yes by the end I resent Christmas, because I overdo it EVERY. SINGLE. YEAR. I set the bar way too high for my four girls and now they're Christmas junkies too. We're doomed. (But we secretly love it at the same time). I know some of you can relate.



So here we are! One of the big changes was that we no longer have a nanny. All of our family is across the country and in Mexico. So where I go, Aurora (almost 2) goes, and often times Stella (almost 4) too, because I have her in preschool school just three mornings a week. Dropping the nanny was a BIG adjustment. Aurora could no longer be sleeping beauty, because we had siblings to pick up in the afternoon. She often has things thrown at her in the car by yours truly if I see her nodding off on the way to pick up Stella because a 15 minute car ride does not count as nap time kid!!!! Gone are the days of solo runs during the week, but winter ruined that anyway. Instead, I am the preferred lovey, I hear my name "Mami, mami, mami" 639,589 times a day in a funny, nasal voice, and I get reminded of little baby snuggles when I sing to her before I lay her down (although my new biceps are proof she isn't a tiny baby anymore). I am exhausted, but fulfilled, and lately find myself needing longer, quiet breaks alone and far, far from the house. It's a totally normal sentiment for someone who has a small person on her 24/7 and I am trying to stay sane to raise these kids right, so my husband often takes over when he sees me about to implode and sends me out of the house alone for those much needed breaks. We're figuring it out together, one day at a time.


Oh! And I started therapy! The stigma should be destroyed and everyone should have access to therapy. It's faith-based counseling and it has been SO helpful in actively showing myself grace, seeking forgiveness when I screw up- both from God and my family, finding my strength in Christ, and helping me calm and organize all the thoughts and feelings that bounce around in my head all day long. See? This isn't an advice page- you'd be crazy to take advice from someone in therapy, right? My counselor has helped me through both the mundane and the life-altering changes I've been facing. Over the last six months my baby became a toddler and I'm not pregnant again with the next kid. That's sorta been my thing for the last eight years and I've found myself floundering trying to find my place. What's next? Am I doing enough? What am I doing? A season is ending and a new one is beginning and I'd love to walk through that with you as we listen to what God is calling us to do next.


The baby turned toddler. She's a nut and does something daily to remind me that she is definitely our last child.

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