sábado, 14 de septiembre de 2013

Beautiful as I am

Yesterday morning I cried a little bit while trying to pray/read my Bible. I didn't even know why, I just felt overwhelmed with the demands of being a mom. I felt terrible because as much as I want to get outside these four walls every day, at the same time I don't. Now that I have the car, and the excitement of getting out every single day has faded -and my husband goes, "Phew! Thank you, Jesus!"- I feel more and more concerned not wanting to "waste" the time I have in my hands with them.

I am human. I cannot do it all. I finally came to terms with that once we finished the Bible study on the Proverbs 31 woman. I want to be who I am. Of course I shoot for the ideal God has shown me, but I don't mop the floor with my tears when I fall short. Because the truth is I will always fall short of God's ideal for me. That's the main purpose of a Savior. I need help. 

So lately, I've been slacking off with the letters, and learning stuff. Enzo mostly eats the books I put in front of him. Libby reads to him. It's really cute. She cracks me up, because she is a mini version of myself. Her tone of voice is so fun, and then I realize that that's me! I like what I hear. In all my stress, and my thoughts about whether I am being a good mother or not, what I see and hear is kindness from her towards Enzo. And Enzo adores his sister. This is what they know. That is what they are learning from me, I want to think. Kindness. 

Libby reading to Enzo

If Libby asks to do her lesson a day, we do it; if not, we don't. We are reading tons of books, lately, tough. We went on a trip to the library and I enjoy when we do something different every time we go. I want her to think that Mommy is amazing in these kind of field trips, you know? There will be a time when Mommy will be anything but amazing. So if right now I am her heroine, so be it :)

Slacking or not, she rocks those D's

I also like to actually interact with them. It takes a toll on my level of daily energy, and I can only imagine how I will feel once they start asking why for everything. But if we go to the library, on the way there we walk along the grass, we stop and pick up flowers, take photos, watch the fountain... I explain that those people are going to college, and I explain what college is. By the way I told them they are going to college, no matter what I heard the other day. Someone said college is not for everyone. 

I don't really know what they meant, but I'm still old school and I do think having an education helps you in many aspects of your life. You will not necessarily get a better job than someone who didn't go to college, that's not always the case, but most of the time you will. Unless, of course, they show promise and become the next Steve Jobs, or Bill Gates, both college dropouts... heck, I will even work for them :)

Picking up flowers

Trying to smile

Brother is not cooperating

So many possibilities

Getting the hang of it

Libby is exploding in her use of language. Yesterday, while "reading" a book, she said, "The cows eat grass". Emerson and I were like Whaaaaat!! in the car (we were driving to the grocery store). Also, in other I-suck-sometimes-as-a-mom news, I didn't buckle Libby up to her car seat. Once we were on the road she told Daddy, "Oh, no, Daddy! Oh, no..."

So we stopped, of course. Emerson told me things I deserved. I know he was rightfully angry. I just want to say something for my children when they grow up and have children of their own...

Mommy and Daddy (that will be your new name once you'll have children, Libby and Enzo),

You are not perfect, and you will not be perfect even if you try. Actually, the more perfect you try to be, the more out of control you'll feel. The more in control you think you are, the more you'll hurt others and yourselves. Look... I have made many mistakes, like not buckling Libby up. Enzo, you fell from the bed because your dad thought you would be okay, and you hurt your eyelid recently because I wasn't paying attention to you when I came to the kitchen to get some water. When something like this happens, I have the tendency to feel guilty about it, over and over. But yesterday, I didn't. 

I took one minute to think about the things your dad said, but I'm happy to tell you I didn't take it all in. I didn't become the words your dad said, and I am so proud of myself. You know, I am spending more time with God lately. You need God if you want to be the best version of yourselves, children. You need God to guide you as parents. Seek Him. Do not let go of Him. Yesterday, I chose God's words over my guilt. I cried, yes, because I had made a huge mistake, a mistake that could have ended very badly. And when I was buckling Libby up, the first thing that came to mind was to thank Jesus for protecting physically both of you all the time. That's something I ask Him for EVERY SINGLE DAY.  

First waltz with prince Enzo

I didn't get sad or depressed, I let it go. And today, something similar happened. We went to our very MOPS meeting, and I was about to cry once I got inside. Really, I felt like crying for the first five minutes I was there.  So picture this... I am wearing shorts and tennis shoes, and have my legs all white because of the petroleum jelly I use for my dry skin. I was all sweaty and agitated for being on the phone with the insurance because your dad wanted me to make sure they were not gonna charge us a dime on Wednesday for the psychical exams. Then I drop you at your classrooms, and I run upstairs, and what do I see? I see perfectly dressed -and I mean perfectly dressed- moms. I looked down at my clothes. My shoes are worn off. My blue shirt, my goodness, I've had that shirt for years. I don't know why I haven't thrown it away... My shorts are all dirty (I realized that once we were there). And these women look so magazine-like. Plus they all know each other. They really looked cute and beautiful. No one was wearing sneakers. And all of them were wearing some kind of jewelry. Seriously all of them were dressed like clothing models. I felt I didn't belong there. I felt sad I had gone. I felt like crying and leaving without even saying hi to anyone. I made myself a cup off coffee because  after all, coffee could cheer anybody up...

And then I remembered what I've been telling you all this time. You are beautiful because God created you. I don't really know how it happened, I'm not gonna lie and tell you God told me that blah, blah... Well, I do believe it was the Holy Spirit reminding me of that truth.  But I also made a decision, quick, in my heart. I chose not to look at these women as better than me because they were wearing nice clothes (nicer than mine to be completely honest). But those clothes didn't make them better than me. Or worthier than me. Or more lovable to God than me. I didn't give into the temptation  Satan put in front of me. I didn't believe I wasn't beautiful because I wasn't wearing those cute clothes. And so I stayed. I'm glad I did. The subject of today was about comparing ourselves to other people, exactly what I had just done.

Getting better at taking pictures
Auto photo

At the beginning, starting up a conversation with the women at my table was kinda awkward because they knew each other already. Plus, I don't know if this is a regular thing all of us women do -specially when you spend all your day with your children- but there were so many women that they just talked, talked, talked, and didn't listen to you or what you had to say. I am one of those sometimes.  

But particularly this year, I mean, these last months, God has been pressing in my heart the fact that I have a purpose in life, and that even though I have both of you in my life, I can still be used. I mean, no offense, gays, but right now in my life I don't feel like going and preach salvation to the people of the world tagging a two year old and an infant along. Volunteering and helping in the ways I used to do before cannot be done anymore. That's why I am helping at BSF with the children. I want to believe I made a difference in some children's lives this week. And honestly, that's why I joined MOPS. 

The prince has grown :)

I want to reach out to women who may need help or a friend. They go there, and they seem so naturally put together, you know, like everything is perfect in their lives, but I wonder how many of those women actually are real, real friends with one another. It seems to me that many, not all of course, but many are only acquaintances of each other, but that's all. I mean, as it is, sometimes I feel like I don't have enough time during the day just to go hang out with someone at Target! Apparently it is a big hit in this MOPS group. But I want to be available, that's all. 

Don't compare yourselves to others, guys.  You are you. And you are beautiful just they way you are. On the ride home I told you how beautiful I felt once I stayed. The Bible says in James 1:22, "Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. [...] whoever continues in it -not forgetting what they heard, but doing it- they will be blessed in what they do".


El Gordito y la Gordita
At the playground

At Darcy's

I think my doing in this situation was believing what God has said about me. I stayed based on that. I got to "know" these women. As time passed, I forgot about my clothes. I knew I was just like them. I felt beautiful because I am beautiful, and mind you, I still knew they were dressed nicer than me. But I didn't let that come between my perception of beauty anymore. Because, as I've told you, God doesn't look at the outward appearance, God looks at the heart. I felt loved by God. I felt free to mention Jesus, and grace. MOPS is a Christian ministry, but none of these women talked about how God was working in their lives. So that makes me think, they either they don't like talking about Jesus openly, or maybe they are not even believers in Jesus. And so this is why I joined. Am I making any sense at all? I want to be available for God to use me at this stage in my life. Because it can be extremely convenient for me to rationalize that I am super busy raising you, and I am - make no mistake. Sometimes I don't even answer my cell because I just don't have time to talk on the phone for thirty minutes when people call. But at the same time I'm trying to let God use me. And I guess He'll provide opportunities if I make myself available.

So yo had to read all this to know that what your mom is really trying to say is that as parents we try to make as few mistakes as we possibly can, but inevitably I will make mistakes, like not buckling Libby up, but that doesn't mean I don't love you. You'll make those kind of mistakes, too. Those are mistakes that can happen to anyone. There is also sin involved besides mistakes. It wasn't a sin not buckling you up, Libby, but there are times when Mommy is angry or impatient or unkind, and I do sin against both of you. You will sin against your children, no matter how much you want to tell me you won't. 

But do not let your mistakes or your sins dictate who you are, gays. Once you believe in Jesus, once you make Him you Savior, He will help you with anything. That doesn't mean you won't struggle or you won't have battles to fight. Jesus never promised that. It means that in all the mess you can create for your lives, you will never be alone. You can conquer your fears and be a different person. You do have the power to change within you, because God is helping you, if you do not let go of Him. 

And that's all I have to say about that... 

Yours truly,


At HEB enjoying free milk and a chip with guacamole

Back to my post, so some of these ladies have older children, playing sports and stuff. They are super busy and one of them takes them not only to one, but several sports because the children want to. I think they do soccer, baseball, and football. And I think they also take piano lessons, and one wanted to learn to play the violin. I just don't know if I want to be that busy as my children grow. I'm dragging my feet just to take them to BSF, I just can't imagine being their chauffeur as they go do all these extra curricular activities. I don't like that kind of busyness anymore. I loved it when I was in college, and I suffered, literally suffered, not having a job at the beginning when we moved to Ohio. But now, with my children, all I want is to spend quality time with them. I LOVE our slow-paced life. I really do. I understand there are moms who need to be on the go, go, go because their children go crazy around the house, or they just enjoy being outside, but not me. I guess, like in everything else, you just need to find a balance. Once you lose that balance, it is very easy to start feeling crazy.

That craziness I heard about yesterday helps me stand firm in my choice of not sending them (at least Libby for now) to any kind of preschool or mother's day out or whatever, until they really have to go, which I guess it will be when they are four.  And now that I think about it, I think we will just send  them twice a week because it is expensive! (And Emerson goes cha-ching, cha-ching). Interaction they are getting at BSF and MOPS, and their education depends on us. I mean, moral values and stuff that really shapes them into who they will become is taught at home, not at school.

Hmm... what else? Libby is talking more and more. She is not mute after all. She has more and more phrases that she says every day. Like, every time she wants dressing, when I take it out of the refrigerator she says, "Right here, Mama". The other day she gave a book to Emerson because he asked her if she wanted to read something and she said, "Read this one please, Daddy". She also calls Enzo like I call him, "Enzooooo, cooome, pleeeeeaaaaaase!". And she also tells me anything he does wrong like, "Enzo dropped the ball".

Caught with her hands in the cookie jar

Also, we have been having some trouble at night when it's time to go night, nights. Libby looooves reading her books. We go to the library and check out tons of them. I think I wrote she is into the farm lately. So this last time we checked out tons of books on farms, sheep, pig, cattle, chickens, the works. We also checked out stuff about our five senses, and the brain, and the digestive system. So... every night at bed time, we sing them songs, and read the devotional, and we pray. But after that she gets up, opens the closet, turns on the light and starts reading in the closet, or on her crib. We had been fighting it because Enzo cries, and even though sometimes he falls asleep, she keeps reading, and wakes him up. So yesterday we thought it was a good idea to just let her be. I mean, she stays up because she enjoys reading... but it was the worst idea possible.

It was 10:30 pm and she was still reading, plus I had the great idea of giving her some goldfish as a reward for having helped Enzo with some toys (she put away the ones that Enzo can choke with and played with the rest). But then, almost at 11 pm, we went in and told her it was enough, that she needed to go to bed, and she began crying, and crying, and crying. I tried to comfort her and she said, while in my arms, that she was choking. She said, "My throat, Mamma, my throat!". Nothing was wrong, she was just very, very tired. We left the room, and she began freaking out, really freaking out because we had told her it was time to quit. She was totally screaming like crazy, so angry that we had taken the books away. Then she opened the door and began yelling, "My throat, Mamma, my throat!! Mamaaaaa, I need water, Mammaaaaaaaaaa!!!".

I was laughing in the living room, because it seemed she was just overreacting, but I guess she was so upset, that when she finally came to the living room, she was covered in vomit, ans she kept on vomiting on my shoulder, and the kitchen floor. I had to change her pajamas, and asked her to calm down. We went to the bedroom, and Enzo was up. We had to change blankets and all, and the chair was all covered in vomit, too. I stayed with her until she feel asleep. It was just crazy. I'm of the idea that she has all the time during the day to read books, so when we say night, nights, I really mean night nights... We'll see tonight. She is disobeying. We spank her when she disobeys. I just feel bad about spanking her for being reading books. It's not like she is hitting me... well, she is doing something I asked her not to. Maybe Daddy will have to take this one for the team, because he is the good one around the house.

Enzo crying at night

Teeth are coming in
And sister's reading doesn't help

Can't nap because Sissy threw books in

Oh! By the way, Enzo took her first spanking the other day. It broke my heart because I think he is more sensitive than Elizabeth is when it comes to the sound of my voice or when I reprimand him. He just cries as soon as I raise my voice in a not approving tone ;(

I think that's it for now. I think I'll have more time to write, and more often. I deleted my Facebook account from my phone like a month ago, and I don't spend as much time as before looking at my phone. Actually, I don't look at my phone anymore. That's good, I needed to do that because my children were always looking at me looking at the cell phone, and I don't want them to see that. So no more phones distracting me from them. And yesterday, after the MOPS meeting, I had the conviction that I needed to get rid of Facebook, too, but in my computer. It was just something that needed to go. 

I'm always very particular of people who cannot quit drinking, or smoking. I know, I know... I am very black and white about certain things. Look, I understand it is an addiction. I had an addiction. I used to smoke. And I quit, just like that. One day I decided I was not gonna smoke anymore, and I never bought a pack of cigarettes again. So, it is possible to quit. I wasn't even a Christian back then, and I did. People say alcoholism is a disease... I don't know... Cancer is a disease, you have something in your own body attacking you, and killing you. I guess it's more mental than anything. Non-followers of Jesus quit all the time. Followers of Jesus have the means to do it easier. I know it is a struggle for everybody, Christians or not. It is possible to quit. I'm gonna shut my mouth now. 

Anyway, I had serious issues with Facebook, because I spent too much time on it, and I didn't even like it. I was just getting angry at people who are not even my real friends. Every time I past the computer, I needed to see it, even if I had seen it two minutes before. I just needed to let go of it, cut it from the root. It had to go. I deleted the account not even wanting to come back. And I asked Emerson to block the site for the next fifteen days so I cannot reactivate it. I just don't want to see it anymore. You need to do what you need to do to stop doing something you know you do that you want to stop doing. Did I make any sense at all?

First running shoes. Jun 7th, 2012.

Wanna stop smoking? Stop buying cigarettes to start. Period. Deal with the psychological issues that trigger your feeling of wanting to smoke. Wanna get rid of pornography addiction? I don't know, I guess that's heavier... You can still imagine things in  your head, but you can deal with them with God's help. I don't know how you would do it without Him honestly. But you can start by destroying every freaking magazine and computer in your house. Anyway... It's been only two days. And it sucks that I won't post photos anymore of my children for my family to see. I can still email those. And I won't chat with my sister in the mornings, but like I told her, I can chat on Google. It has to have some kind of messenger, doesn't it?

So, if Facebook was taking my time away, I had to let it go. It had been a while since I knew it had to go, but I didn't want to do that. I know it is not a big deal for everybody, but it was for me. I can use that time for something else that is worthier, like writing this, or actually being with my children [sarcasm]. I always felt a need to go and sit down in front of my computer. But now, every time I sit down, I realize I don't have Facebook anymore, so I don't waste 15 minutes every hour. 

By the way, we bought Libby new shoes today. Her size six were tight already. She was so, so excited that she began moving her arms, and her legs, and then suddenly BAM!! She comes and hits Enzo right on the face!! HA HA HA!! I asked her, "What is wrong? What did just happened?". I gave he a slap on her hand, and told her we don't hit brother under any circumstance. She apologized and kissed brother. And brother only laughed, of course, and "said" he forgave her. Emerson asked me what had happened once we left the store (he was paying when this happened), and I told him. He laughed. He asked me if I had never been so excited I felt like hitting someone. I laughed, too, because I have. I knew she was terribly excited. Still, I cannot let her know it is okay to hit when extremely happy, because it is not, even if you feel like it.

Enzo's first time coloring

Saturday morning we sang this song to Libby and Enzo on our bed, it's an hymn from BSF...

Good morning, God!
This is your day, I am your child, show me your way!!!

When she was trying to take a nap (which didn't happen) she was singing it. She is exhausted. It's almost 9:30 pm and still she is not out for the night. What can I do? I love her so much. Enzo is awake, but not crying. I'll just chill with Daddy... 

I love you, Emerson. More than I can tell you. I wouldn't change anything in our lives. I would do it all over again. All of it :)

New shoes... Sept 14th, 2013. 

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