miscarriage

Angel Babies (& why we keep trusting)

IMG_0601I never thought I would know someone like me. Actually, I don’t know anyone that has a story like mine so it is a lonely place to be sometimes. I have always had a love  for children, especially my own. That love has just grown exponentially over the years and I have often wondered if there was ever going to be a limit to that love, when I would decide that I just didn’t want another. I actually felt the reverse, I just wanted MORE, and now I find myself wondering when or if I will ever stop wanting another.

Funny, I know that of course my body is going to reach a stage probably anytime soon, when it will no longer bear  life and it just makes me so sad. Don’t get me wrong, pregnancy was very hard for me, especially around the last 5 pregnancies when I had to inject myself in the stomach with a needle everyday and battle nausea, and battle the worry that tried to consume me daily that another baby just wouldn’t stick. I had insomnia, leg cramps, anemia, and exhaustion. I couldn’t say I was in love with pregnancy, I could only say that I felt privileged to be included in the procreation process and that I would fall deeply in love with the life that was being created in me as soon as I knew it was there. For some reason I would always know really early too, before my cycle was even due, and I would share my sneaking feeling with my hubby and feel joy stirring in my being.

At one point I definitely thought I just couldn’t go on and lose another baby. I had a handful of little children, 5 living children in 5.5 years with a miscarriage between them and then 4 miscarriages close to the 3 month mark all in a row. I detested the morning sickness, and watched a couple of years go by feeling fat and really sad. I didn’t know one person that persevered after 4 miscarriages in a row(cuz people would tell me their stories) and I was wondering if it was worth going forward. I prayed all the time and asked my husband to pray for me every day. Women would watch my belly pop ,see the glow,and ask me awkwardly if I was pregnant. I didn’t want to tell anyone that I was expecting because I would hear that excited little “eek” and I didn’t want to hear it. I wanted to be alone in my thoughts and not have to re-tell Everyone the devastating news that I had lost another baby again however many weeks later.

There were times where I would hear that little whisper in my soul, do you trust me? After 4 miscarriages in a row  it was just a couple of months later when I said yes Lord I am willing. I contacted my obstetrician and asked his opinion. He lined up a few tests and before I could make it to any more than the first preliminary blood test I found out I was expecting again. I found out before my cycle was due because I felt that familiar “I am pregnant feeling”,and I was cramping which was a bad sign for me.

It was a Monday morning and I drove to the doctors office without having an appointment and stood in the hallway praying for somebody to open the door to his office.  My doctor was the first want to show up and told me that as soon as his office opened at 9 AM he would see me first. He was such a blessing.  I went on blood thinners that same day which consisted of injecting myself in the stomach every morning with a needle. 9 months later I went home with a healthy baby boy. He was my third rainbow baby and I was in love.  I didn’t realize how scarred I was at that point until I was leaving the hospital and I stood watching my husband plug his car seat into the car. When I heard the audible click of him setting his car seat in place, I broke down crying.

That baby is why I continued to trust, because I don’t understand God’s ways or even why He allows miscarriage at all. I do know that if I listened to my relatives, my friends and my then Pastor, I wouldn’t have the last two children that I had. Sometimes I would wait a couple of months ,to give myself and my body a break, but I would start to feel that familiar tug in my heart and I knew that I would have to use trust to be willing to go forward again.

I now have seven children, 4 of them are rainbow babies, and 10 are angel babies, and my last miscarriage was just last fall. That pregnancy was hurtful and long. I miscarried at 13 weeks and hemorrhaged, and ended in the hospital needing surgery.

It took me a while but I am finally in a place of trust again, although it is scary sometimes, and I am still hoping for one more child at least. I cry when I see newborns and feel a little kind of punch in the gut when someone tells me they are expecting. I guess I just thought because I wanted 10 children, then that’s what I would get but I have learned to trust in my God for He is the one that gives and the one that takes away. This may sound odd to some but I do take consolation in the fact that I have seen those heartbeats 💗 and I know that those very real living souls have gone ahead to be with my father in heaven.

 

 

 

homeschooling, large family, lifestyle, Motherhood

Motherhood ( Breathe )

imageI love the motherly closeness depicted in this piece of art that I bought from my friend over at rugged infinity (posted with permission). I think she did a really great job showing exactly how a momma feels as she draws a young one close. Even as they grow large and don’t exactly fit under our chins like they once used to we still hold them as close as possible, even just in our minds sometimes. So why do we feel like they are driving us crazy sometimes? Well because we are normal and because they can be so frustrating sometimes. Can you say potty training? Can you say baking powder instead of flour in the cake batter;and smashing a Pyrex dish 2 minutes later? Can you say toddler siblings trying to beat each other up over a dinky car? The list is endless really. No matter how many children you have there are moments where you want to hide in the bathroom and call your bestie while you sneak chocolate into your system. Listen, motherhood is a tough gig and it’s important to remember that no Mom is perfect. So cut yourself a break.

I made a vow to myself about a dozen years ago. That vow was to do my best every day and go to bed happy, knowing that I had accomplished my goal. I still repeat this vow to myself all the time. I know that I have signed up for a huge task with homeschooling and MommyHood, and being a helpmeet but I just do my best every day. I make sure that everyone in my family, hubby included, has had one on one time with me, and that I have taken the time to slow down and stop and stare into each persons eyes. I make sure that I have had a conversation with each one because I know that they are growing before my eyes.

When things start to feel tense and overwhelming I try to take a deep breath before responding, so that I am not responding in anger. I could almost repost this and add more information about homeschooling with boys, which I may do one day soon. Boys can make things quite tense, my boys anyway. I have met the odd Mom that says she has an angel boy or two but I find that mine are very high energy and so they just have different needs than my girls who are quite easy to manage.

I want to encourage all you large (and small) family Moms (especially you homeschooling Mommas) to just slow down, even put the school books aside and work on relationships and Training instead of going so hard at the curriculum all the time. Take a hike in the woods, play a board game, do art all day, teach them a new craft, snuggle them close and do a read aloud together, tell them you love them often, and remember to breathe.

 

 

homeschooling, large family

School At The Pool

Some homeschoolers take their books with them on vacation and some don’t. I feel like there are a lot of hours in a day and knowing that the morning weather is a little chilly in the morning here we felt like this was a good way to pass the time and stay caught up in our school work. So our morning looked like this:

 

This is the beauty of freedom homeschooling. We go wherever we want and learn so much about life around us. We enjoyed talking to people from all over the world 🌎 today, a cardiologist and his sweet wife and a mourning widow with great kids . We spoke with our oldest kids about the memorial we stumbled across yesterday outside Pulse nightclub while looking for a hero of a street preacher. We spoke about the hate that filled the night about a year and half ago and that no one should have to die the way they did. We spoke about the sadness of it all.

These sun filled chill days are so precious to us. My hubby and I take turns working out in the gym with a view of our family and each other. We watch the littlest guys play and enjoy themselves while their siblings concentrate. They are also plowing through books while we are here, playing, swimming, working on lots of Florida inspired art, talking about the next adventure that awaits.

 

 

Our Tribal Tips

Best Dish Rack Ever (My Gift💝To You)

Maybe not the weirdest post ever written by a homeschooling Mom, but definitely one with purpose. If you’ve ever been to the home of a large family you may have noticed that there is a lot of pots and dishes being used and washed all the time.  I never felt that we had the time to hand dry everything as it was being washed so I went on a quest for a large dish rack .  I wanted it to be aesthetically pleasing but super functional and as big as possible. The wimpy ones at Walmart made no sense to me. I wanted to be able to leave it on my counter and pile high the pots and pans from a days work and let them air dry.

First I called all of my friends with large families and ask them what they used. Then  I set out to all the major box stores to see what was available.  I bought one and returned several dish racks and was becoming a little depressed at the thought that no one had an idea just how important this could be to someone like me .

Then I happened to check on Amazon ( that word just makes me smile) and I found a large dish rack by Simple Human that seemed to be everthing I needed/wanted and get this….came with a 5 year warranty. I bought it and I love ❤️ it , and I need to tell you I get nothing for saying this either.  Just recently another large family mom and friend of mine came for a visit to my house and spied my dish rack. She saved up and bought one as quick as she could as she saw the same value I saw. If you have  to have something permanently on your counter, then why not a gorgeous washable functional piece like this? It’s so worth its price tag (100$).

picture will follow shortly or just google it, or if you need to see one in person🛒 you can check it out at Home Outfitters also, they just don’t always have the largest one in stock. ❌⭕️

 

large family, lifestyle, miscarriage, Motherhood

Due Dates

Due Dates come and go around here all the time, yet they mostly go by unnoticed by everyone except myself, my sweet hubby, and maybe a dear friend that I mention it to. I hurt.

I hurt because of my child gone, a dream interrupted, a vision altered by yet another miscarriage. 9 miscarriages have left me scarred a little. 8 in the last 8 years alone. It’s mostly a silent, lonely place to be as I have tried to let people in but few understand especially because I have children. I shouldn’t hurt because I am blessed. I get it, I am blessed. 7 kids total, 6 in 10 years given as gifts to me from the Lord above. Did it happen to you at this very second? Did you lose your empathy for me as most do? Well I’m here for the hurting souls that don’t have anyone that gets it.

Two years ago and a few miscarriages ago my husband and I had just found out that I was carrying another dead baby but my body had not figured it out yet. My womb was not letting go of the pregnancy and so I walked around dreadfully anticipating when my body would purge everything it has been growing  for almost 3 months.  We decided to take our children to a peaceful place on the water and walk around on the paths surrounding the lake and just enjoy some peace. However, a couple approached us with a young girl  and started to chat  with us about the size of our family. (Really Lord? Am I strong enough?) They spoke about their loss of 4 babies in a row since they’re only child was born. They had given up  hope and were so upset over their losses they didn’t know what to do. It was such a painful moment for me holding my belly and telling them that there could still be hope.  My four-year-old is a rainbow baby so is my seven-year-old and my two-year-old . My four year old was  a gift to me after four miscarriages in a row. I had just about lost hope too but not enough to not try again and then there he was.  I didn’t realize how scarred  I was at the time , until we walked out of the hospital with him snuggled in  his car seat, and at the very moment that I heard his seat click into the holder my soul jolted to attention  and I started to cry because I realized it was all real and he was going  home with me.

I get it friend , you losses and mine are soooo REAL. Those babies were real, and it just sucks that most of us have nothing more than a date on our calendar or in our journals to remind us that they were alive once within us.  Some ladies wear special necklaces with charms symbolizing their babies, some people named their babies. My dream is to one day have a piece of jewellery with a stone for each baby I carried. Each stone symbolizing the love my husband and I share for each other and for each soul that has gone on to be with the Lord until we get there.

Let only select people in. The ones who understand your heart and your loss. I believe that I’ve been given a gift from the losses. The gift of being able to cry and mourn with a stranger in a Walmart who has also lost. The gift of empathy. The gift of being able to say I understand. image

 

large family, Large Family Logistics, Motherhood

Do you have kids?Lose Yourself.

IMG_8526 (2)Lets get REAL.

Over the course of the Holidays I found myself in stores more than usual, which is pretty understandable. While buying gifts for my kids and husband, certain topics seemed to arise between myself and whoever the sales clerk happened  to be that day. They would often ask leading questions to see if they could better understand my needs as  a buyer such as “who is this for ….and how old are they, etc. I was asked if I had children and how many etc. So I asked the question back. The sales clerk looked me in the eye and said” no, I never want kids.”  I asked her if she didn’t want them because she didn’t like kids. She said “My reason is bigger than that. I feel like I would lose myself” She seemed pretty proud of herself in the way she responded . In a way she is right , you do lose yourself some what.

I spoke the truth that day. I’m not always so bold but  I replied ” yes, you will lose yourself but you will find a new self”. She was shocked and said nothing further so neither did I.

I am not my old self , I am a person called Mama who loves with a mama bear love I never knew before I had a child. I put my little tribe before myself and their needs before mine continuously. I care deeply that they feel loved and secure and that they  have all their needs met by a Mama and Daddy that love them sacrificially. I am a better person than I was because I learned what it takes to be a Mom, and what it takes to have to stay up all night with sick kids, how to be by their side as they learn how to read, how to plead with God as they have an emergency operation, how to comfort a teen that’s really down on himself, teach them about the Jesus and countless other things. Lose yourself dear Mother and be glad that you are not lost but changed into somethIng beautiful.