That MOM Style…

That MOM Style….I know I am mixing it up a bit but I feel like I really need to touch on this topic. 

This photo taken about 4 months ago, when I was in the midst of baby madness and post-partum craze, and physically now where I wanted to be……BUT it shows the essence of  MOM Style. 

This photo is scary but true….

I see all these fantastic photos of instabloggers on social media….They are momstoo  and their houses are cleaned and in pristine condition, their closets are organized, they have perfectly curled hair, and they wear perfectly contoured make-up and most of them are always traveling with their littles. 

This isn’t real life….they have to have help… RIGHT?? 

OR…Am I the only one in the first few months after giving birth….heck even after…..that is falling apart with spit up and milk on my clothes and the only thing I got accomplished for the day, for myself was straightening my hair…

I am trying but I am sure that insta-perfect will never be me….

Before the boys were born I was a shopper, I liked my high priced staple items BUT also finding a deal. I would try to have several cute mix and match pieces. I was into watching and looking for what was “in” and then finding a way to make it my own. 

Most of the time I enjoyed being overdressed.

Since having the boys and having my body change and then change again, I was lacking style. And CONFIDENCE….

Plus the budget had to change. 

Well, ya know, because we are now buying clothes for two other people…and I LOVE baby clothes.

BUT…..

I mean Momma’s let’s get REAL……

We can’t call yoga pants/sweatpants and a Piko top ….style.

Nonetheless, that was my “uniform”.

For a while I felt unhealthy and lethargic. My style and myself wasn’t on the top of my priority list. I wasn’t sure why I had to wear something cute when I was just chauffeuring my son to therapy, running errands , going to doctors apts, and cleaning and organizing the house. 

But now I see how it affected my mood. 

Now that Theodore is 1 year, 9 months and Oliver is 8 months, I finally am beginning to find my “mom style”. It is more practical and subtle but I am beginning to have fun again. 

I am beginning to accept my imperfect, scared, blemished and YES cellulite body. I now just find pieces that help me feel comfortable in my own skin. 

I worry less about what is in style or on the runway, and focus more on what makes me feel beautiful. 

I still have my eye on this high priced items, but I either search for them on eBay or other shops where I can get them at a great discount. 

Most of the time I try to find items I love just at a great price. 

Sometimes, I find an item I love and buy it in EVERY color. I don’t fret as much anymore about the size but how it fits. Before children I may have been ashamed BUT now I DONT CARE.

If I think it’s cute, it fits and it is practical for therapy for Theodore and chasing two boys around………. I buy it.

I still wear many dresses and skirts, ( bc I really hate jeans) but they have to be more flowy and a bit longer. 

I still wear jewelry, but it has to be JUST RIGHT so I don’t scratch the boys. 

I still wear heels and wedges, but they have to be comfy and just not so high. 

I still love purses, but I have resorted to a big diaper bag and a wallet I LOVE!!! 

I still wear hats, but I know they may get ripped of by my boys. 

Now don’t get me wrong I still DONT wear make-up often, I cut my hair short because you won’t catch me curling it into loose waves, sometimes I forget deodorant, I put dry shampoo in my hair most days, converse are often a part of my outfit, I love  black yoga pants, I have clothes I still wear from high school, I repeat many outfits and sometimes still wear yoga pants and work-out clothes bc I feel to tired to change clothes. 

I will, Report to Duty, MOST days to put an outfit together. However, I will still have days that I wear comfy ill fitting clothes. From now on I will post my outfit and will always be open to recommendations. Style, shopping and clothes are things I find to be good for my sole and I want to be accountable more often. 

I have discovered that in this life I need to find things I enjoy more often and follow through with them MORE OFTEN. I hope you can do the same! 
Until Next Time,
Reporting to Duty
Xox

Happy Mother’s Day 

I have had the opportunity to look up to some pretty great mothers in my life. They have taught me a great deal and have showed me unconditional love. 

Before becoming a mother I knew I wanted to cherish these role models, and tools of motherhood. BUT…. I also knew I had to make my own rules and guidelines. 

I have to think just two short years ago I was not even a mother. I had not been through the trudges of motherhood or knew what was coming to our life. 

We were expecting but I had no clue how UNIQUELY BEAUTIFUL our life would become. 

I had no clue that you could love so much that it would hurt. 

I had no clue how much responsibility it is to take care of such a tiny life. 

I had no clue that no other job would be as gratifying as being Theodore and Oliver’s  mother. 

However, this has been the hardest most rewarding job and role I have ever done. 

Some days it has been significantly lonely, and it has been many times thankless. I have bawled, screamed, ugly cried and cursed. I have fought depression, anxiety and have struggled with jealousy. I have felt alone, judged and hopeless. I have wanted more support and struggled with the WHY.

It is the scariest thing I have ever done being these boy’s mommy.

This job… being a MOTHER has changed who I am deep into my soul. 

Although, it has been hard I wouldn’t change it for the world. I would not have it taken back and I am NOT giving up. 

NOW…TWO years later……I like to think that I am an improved version of myself. 

“MaMA” has been my most favorite role, job, title and life perspective.

BUT….

I have apologize to all mother’s because I thought becoming a mother would be different. I didn’t necessarily think it would be easier, or more rewarding but different. 

BUT

It is so sooooooo much more……

It is EVERYTHING.
Happy Mother’s Day to mother’s of all kinds. 

I will be, Reporting to Duty, this Mother’s Day. I will be giving my boys some extra love and spending it knee deep in motherhood. I will be continuing to try to take more time and cherish the good with the bad. I will continue to take in the scent of their skin, the rhythm of their beating heart and the warmth of their hugs. 

I will cherish motherhood. 
CHEERS! I make a toast to you!! And do something great for yourself mother’s!!!
Until Next Time,
Reporting to Duty 
Xox

Through Theodore’s Eyes

Over 20 months ago our journey began, in part because we needed more answers to why he wouldn’t grab toys or why his eyes “shook”. 

We thought it was many many scary things but now we have more answers and are making progress towards better health and strength. 

On Thursday, we will take an aggressive step in helping Theodore view the world from another perspective. 

Theodore is having what is called as strabismus surgery to correct his gaze. He will continue to need glasses but the surgery will steady his eyes. 

We are hoping that once the surgery is completed that he will be more willing to turn his head to the left. Eventually, and HOPEFULLY it will help release him of his torticollis, and he will be able to physically do more.

They do believe the surgery will not change his prescription and he will continue to wear glasses for farsightedness and astigmatism. But they do believe is have MANY benefits for his concentration.

During the procedure an opthamologist, who specializes in strabismus, will go in to loosen the muscles in his eyes. This procedure will help control his nystagmus and help him so he can gaze forward. 

There are so many fine details to the surgery that I just try to focus on the point and the end perspective. 

We are hoping this procedure is just yet another advancement for Theodore. He has already come quite a ways and we are hoping for more growth after this procedure. 

The procedure is routine, but for any parent it is quite scary. I have been emotional about the procedure mainly because I pray he is strong enough and that he does well under anesthesia. 

He has been under many times but I don’t think it gets any easier. As a parent I fear many things. I worry about his strength, severe apnea, his asthma and well anything else I can find to worry about during the procedure. I know many of you have felt this stress and how it can be worrisome. 

I am going to Report to Duty and channel my stress and worry into strength. I will be strong for him. I will help him recover and give him love and support. I would appreciate if everybody could send love, prayers and good vibes. 

Thanks in advance and all our love!  
Until Next Time, 
Reporting to Duty
Xox

Fight for Each Other.

Over the last few weeks we have been trying to line up docotors in North Carolina.

It is something that I didn’t particularly want initially, because we LOVE our team in Indiana.

However, while we were home, in Indiana, we had a couple cancellations. This messed with a few medical questions and urgencies. Since we were there only a short period of time we were unable to see them….. stressful, I know!!!!

Soooooooo……Now, we decided we needed to build our team of doctors for Theodore in North Carolina.

You would think this would be rather simple, but because of this tedious process My hair started falling out, I questioned God, the medical field and increased my wine intake.

These people have been infuriating to work with, they are slow, rude, do not follow through and question my own knowledge.

A great deal of them have been disrespectful and I am not sure how some of them have their medical license.

……….

After many useless appointments and tons of paperwork we have asked to see specialists at Duke Medical.

Ummm…. that wasn’t easy either AND it was as if I asked many of them to cure cancer.

One doctor read Theodore’s charts/notes incorrectly and before they even seen Theodore they gave him a diagnosis. The others wouldn’t see him until I dotted every I and crossed every T.

1. I understand and appreciate efficiency, but what about emergencies and the urgency of the situation at hand?

2. They diagnosed him with something he clearly did not have and when I told them they questioned me….whaaat?

3. They wanted us to wait EIGHT months to see a doctor. No sir that isn’t happening!!!

……….

I have fought, argued and challenged many medical facilities, because of these mishaps.

This should not have to happen, we are dealing with actual lives. Shouldn’t it be more efficient, no matter who it is shouldn’t we care MORE??

……….

A medical professional actually told me that I fought only because I was educated.

Not sure if that was a compliment or them being disrespectful BUT…..

ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!!

No…..I fight because I care!

I have a lot of fight and a lot to fight for ….but what about all the other children in this world.  What about all the other PEOPLE in this world??

Shouldn’t we all have someone fighting for us??

Just because I am educated you recognize my fight.

……….

I have come to learn that racism isnt just black or white. It is educated, uneducated, black, military, non-military, poor, rich, white, northern, southern, red, green purple  and blue.

What are we supposed to do?

All lives matter right?

I know this is a topic that has been popular over the last year, but I never come to recognize its importance until I had to fight for my son just to be seen at a specialist.

We are all so afraid of fighting, and if we’re not fighting then we are challenging EVERYTHING!

I understand the fear…

We are in a constant push and pull!!

I don’t have the answers but DAMN IT I will find the answers and I challenge everyone to speak out and find answers.

In our current situation it is the medical field.

But ….many others struggle in different areas.

We have had the privilege of seeing the best medical care in Indiana and I will fight for nothing less.

……….

I fear for those who know nothing different.

I fear for those who have no more fight.

I fear for those who are bullied.

I fear for those who are challenged.

……….

I am, Reporting to Duty, and asking you all to challenge the fight. DO NOT give up or give in!!

We all need to fight for EACH OTHER. I am going to continue my duty. I am going to write a Thank You letter to those medical professionals that have helped us and I am going to write those in charge of the medical professionals that have challenged us. Something needs to change and ALL LIVES MATTER!
Until Next Time,

Reporting to Duty

Xox

Thankful for those TINY little things! 

In all of our lives things become OVERWHELMING.

Sometimes we are going too fast, working too hard and concentrating on things too long to see what makes things go, work and turn.

I am definitely one of these people. 

I am constantly focusing on the BIG goals and the BIG steps we have taken to get where we all need and want to be in our lives. 

I forget about the TINY little things.

However, this year on Thanksgiving I am trying to remember all the TINY little things and BIG things we should be thankful for this year. 

1. I am thankful for our two beautiful boys. A year ago we only had one and now we have two. Each very individual of each other, but equally special. Theodore is spunky, loving, strong headed, courageous and unpredictable. Oliver is brave, predictable, loving, he already idealizes his big brother and we continue to learn more everyday. I am thankful God chose us to be their parents. 

2. I am thankful for my husband. This last year has been interesting to say the least  and I am glad that I get to have him as my partner. He was especially strong and supportive while Theodore and I lived in Indiana as we figured out/researched Theodore’s health. During this time I had our family near but he was all by himself and remained our strength. I am thankful for him everyday, even when I don’t show or say how I feel.

3. I am thankful for my family. They have been so supportive and helpful. I don’t take much time off from fighting or being a mommy but if and when I do they have been there to help (sometimes they even force me to take breaks). Each one of them celebrates our wins and encourages through the losses. I am thankful for each of them and their uniqueness. My family is like no other! 

4. I am thankful for the doctors that believed me, faught for us and broke boundaries to find Theodore’s rare chromosome deletion. We never wanted something wrong with our child, but  we knew something wasn’t right. I am glad they took the time to figure out the cause.  I continue to be thankful for their input and support with not only Theodore but Oliver. Not all doctors are equal and when you find those that REALLY care, you found a rare gem. In that, I am thankful for our team of docotors!

5. I am thankful for our Journey. I have not been happy, thrilled or joyous everyday of our Journey. I have learned how strong I can be and how hard I can push. I have seen and been amazed with the strength that has come from such hard and low moments. I am thankful for those we have met and all we have learned.

6. I am thankful for our friends. Those that have been in this with us have been patient and understanding of our inability to be present both physically and mentally (LOL). They have checked in and sent many many prayers and I am thankful for each one of them and their individual qualities. 

 I am thankful for a great deal. I hope I am able to see the beauty in everyday and I know that I will have days where I continue to struggle with seeing the positive. 

Nonetheless, I want to Report to Duty in taking time today, and try every other day to be thankful for those things that we take for granted. Some of these things we may even find silly to say aloud, but I sure am thankful them. 

Here is just a small list…..our home, our dogs, our nieces 👯, my shoes 👠, food on our table, shelter, our dogs 🐶, my comfy bed, transportation 🚤✈️🚂🚲🚙, support, feeling loved, being an American 🇺🇸, being a women, comfy slippers, wine, love, kindness, freedom, coffee ☕️, a nice handbag 👜, lip stains, vacations, medical breakthroughs, and much much more…

I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving and please take time to be thankful for the small tiny tiny things. 

If we can’t be thankful for the small things then maybe we will never be appreciative of the bigger things!! 

Until Next Time,

Reporting to Duty

Xox

Following MY Journey.

Last week my husband, Keith asked me, when the last time I wrote on my blog.

I knew I had been neglecting it and I tried giving a valid excuse, but the wonderful man ( sitting across from me in the hospital) wasn’t going to take an excuse.

Sadly and honestly I don’t remember the last time I posted a blog. I do know that I have several drafts and a few titles, but no posts.

In my mind I am stressed out, LOST,  over worked, being a terrible adult and severely OVER multitasking. In reality, I am making excuses and feeling sorry for myself.

Sooo…… I need to get over myself!

The last few weeks have been a whirlwind.

*Adapting to Oliver and working his schedule into ours

*Learning what is best for Oliver

*My healing( after c-section)

*Theodore’s therapy

*Learning how to parent two children

*Taking a road trip to Indiana for Theodore’s schlew of appointments

*Learning about more interventions/procedures needed for Theodore  ( eye surgery, new glasses bc new prescription, hearing aids bc failed hearing in left ear, ENT bc breathing issues while sleeping… I will update in another blog)

*Keith getting put in the hospital during his short visit to Indiana interrupting my crazy plans (diverticulitis and an abscess in the colon) -Exhibit A -I should ease up on the planning.

All of this feels like a lot and sometimes I feel extremely overwhelmed, LOST , mad, sad and tired.

BUT…..I have to keep telling myself we can get through this journey, I can handle my part of the job…..

but ….DAMN IT, sometimes it is freaking hard.

I have come to realize I cry less than I used to and I pray more. I pray so much more. I pray when I am showering, walking out of the hospital, before I go to bed, grocery shopping, when I am driving and even when I occasionally drink a glass of wine.

I need to know that there is something bigger better and in more control than I am. I need to know that God is only giving me what I can handle and that Keith and I can conquer each of our challenges together.

Now I am NOT trying to get you on a God bandwagon and it really isn’t something I “preach” about, bc ya know I don’t care who your God is and I am not judging.

BUT I am sharing because I need God!

I still cuss, yell and drink (ya know we believe water was turned to wine by BIG J himself so it’s appropriate)  so I am NOT claiming to be all holly and perfect but I NEED the man! I NEED to know he listens even when I feel lost.

I NEED to stop feeling lost and out of control!

I know in my life I have said I need many things; including Starbucks and a new pair of shoes, but I truly know those are not real needs. I am just being over dramatic and probably should get over myself. But hey it wouldn’t be me without those quarks!!

I know in order to stop feeling lost I need to stop saying what if, over planning and let life happen. I NEED to trust in the plan created for me!

If you know me well those three things are VERY hard! But that truly does NEED to happen. I understand I will occasionally feel lost in my life but I know I will NEED to regroup and understand life happens! You all need to pray I can let go….GROUP WORK!!!

I will TRY to Report to Duty, everyday, in effort of letting go and following the journey. MY Journey. I will try to guide myself with the enjoyment of the unknown and refuse to get lost.

Until Next Time,

Reporting to Duty

Xox

To Theodore, Our First Born.

In a little over a week you will no longer be an only child. Your short 13 month span as an only child is coming to an end. However, you will always be our first.

A little over 22 months ago we discovered you were on your way. Our prayer was answered quickly, and we fumbled around getting things together for your debut!

For those nine months I carried you, I prayed for your health and safety. I never really cared if you were a boy or girl, but that you would come into this world knowing you were loved.

The day you arrived was scary, stressful and tiring but when I first met you I knew you were special. These last 13 months have been the hardest and most gratifying months of my life.

You were the little boy that made me a mommy.

I thought I knew how the job was done, but I actually had no clue. It was you that showed me I could learn. You were patient when I needed some more time to figure things out and you understood I would eventually learn.

Also, before you came I was not a patient person (it was something I often prayed for). Often I still struggle, but it was you that showed me,at times, I can have the patience of a saint.

You showed me that I can have more than one goal path and that surprises come in all forms. You taught me that I am to always trust my instincts, that your kisses can heal my pain and that breathing isn’t the same without you in this world.

When you came into this world I did my hair less, rarely wore makeup, shopped less, and wore yoga pants more, but you taught me a great deal. Scared and worried in the beginning about motherhood and change, I now understand the old me could have NEVER handled this past year.

You showed me the world from yet another perspective. You helped me grow…….

I worry about these next couple months because, I don’t want you to feel neglected or left behind. I am expecting this to be different and I pray you are resilient( as we have seen time and time again).

I know you will be the best big brother and you will continue to teach us all. You are unique and rare and we are greatfull to have you as our first born.

Please be patient with us my dear first born son, and know I will always be greatfull to you.

Things may never be perfect, but together we have formed the perfect team. I will love you more than you will ever know. I will, Report to Duty, EVERYDAY to be your mother. I will try to teach you all I know and allow you to prosper. Things will never be perfect, I may struggle, but I will try my hardest.

You will always be my first and that will always be special.

I love you to infinity and beyond Theodore.
Until Next Time,

Reporting to Duty (your mommy)

Xox