Thursday, July 29, 2010

This ain't for the weak of heart

There may be a little bit longer between posts. I don't want to be debbie downer and I also don't want anyone to miss the joy that exists in this fatigued heart. So much gets lost in translation in emails, texts, etc and more than anything, I want my gratitude and overflowing love for Mary Kate to be seen. But it's hard to get that message across in the midst of what is such a trying time. I can say that I am learning a lot, being refined every day, and while some days I don't know how we'll make it another minute longer, I know that this is my vocation.

Mary Kate is growing (she better be with her desire to eat non-stop. seriously, non. stop.) and is more alert each day. Efforts at being really intentional with our time together are paying off and I am learning more about her. Approaching her 3 week birthday tomorrow, we already know that she loves to be outside and the great outdoors is like a cork for her crying. We know that she likes when her daddy skips around the house in circles with her laying on his forearm and likes when her mama sings "My girl" to her. We know that she sleeps better in a swaddle but is a little houdini and keeping those arms down is like working for world peace. We know that she does not like having her diaper changed but is becoming less traumatized by it each time. I should hope so, since we repeat this act 650 times a day. I am learning that I should have really done more research on cloth diapers because we will deplete our 401k's on disposable diapers. I never imagined they'd go through so many.

I can only imagine how mundane this sounds to the outside world, so forgive my efforts to talk to someone other than a grunting baby and an overweight golden retriever.  As I am reminded often, this time will go very fast (I could handle it  going a teensy bit faster though) and I don't want to forget these special times with our girl.

I never, ever, in my wildest dreams imagined this particular season to be so challenging but as many of you have said, it passes and the next thing I will know, she'll be a toddler throwing food on the floor in a restaurant. Each night, I tell myself, "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me" and every morning around 3-4 am, I roll my eyes at that scripture, thinking it applies to everyone but me. But alas, we woke up today. We got dressed (sort of) and were out of the house for a sweet playdate with Jennifer and Elizabeth. I may or may not have grabbed one of those wisk disposable toothbrushes as we ran out the door, realizing that we did not, in fact, brush our teeth. My poor child. Anyway, we are making it out of the house more days than not and are taking this journey millisecond by millisecond.

So if I'm away (though Lord knows I can't stay quiet too long), it's because I can hear my mama saying "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all." And rest assured, there is plenty of nice to say- about my amazing husband, my sweet little girl, our supportive families. However, until this sleep lover gets more than 3 hours consecutively, I can't remember all of those nice things.

Off to feed the child. It's been 7 minutes already!

and just cause it's sweet...

Friday, July 23, 2010

Two weeks and breakthroughs

Today is Mary Kate's 2 week birthday. Exactly two weeks ago, I was laboring, so ready to meet the little gift God gave us. She took her sweet time but entered the world at 6:59 pm, one minute before our beloved nurse was leaving for the day! And since then? HOLY. COW. Please brace yourselves for an unorganized post because no pre-made outline can make this one flow. Right now, I am watching my genius daughter hold her pacifier in her mouth with her mitten covered hand. Her eyes are open, a rare and treasured occurance. We just sat down after a memorable morning, celebrating her two weeks in the outside world and thinking about the roller coaster (free-fall?) we have been on together. It has both terribly hard and blissfully wonderful. Shall we start with the less than wonderful?

My whole life, my 'cross' has been poor self-esteem. I worked and worked to feel good about myself and no amount of success or accolades could ever fill the hole in my heart that read "you are not enough." This hole propelled me to work myself to the bone trying to find adequacy and worthiness. The only time I felt semi-capable was when I was with children. Thanks to a lifetime of work with and love of kids, babysitting made me feel good about myself. Eason and Annie made me feel like one day I could be good at something, really good at being a mom. I have latched onto that belief and craved motherhood- both because I love children and admittedly, because I wanted something at which I could finally succeed.

Enter July 2010. "Successful" is not the word I would use to describe how I have felt. After a blessed four hours sleep that has me feeling like I spent 9 hours in bed at the Ritz, I can see a little more clearly now. But after the initial adrenaline of MK's birth and Patrick's wedding, I came home to a fatigue I have never known, an onslaught of post-partum hormones and a child who prefers to eat every 6 minutes. I have had a meltdown nearly every day, culminating two nights ago when I was convinced that God made a big, fat mistake. To feel inadequate at the ONE thing you always knew you'd do well is the biggest let-down in the world. I sobbed to my husband and then to my mom convinced that I could not possibly feed her one more time and what kind of mother am I that I don't even want to feed my baby? I sobbed that I should love her more, want to hold her more and should not crave my pillow more than my baby. I sobbed that my prayers against post-partum depression went unanswered and sobbed more watching my husband ask what he should do. We prayed together and I told God that this was all his fault and he better fix it fast since it was, after all, all His fault. We gave the baby to my mother-in-law, let me curl into my husband as I continued to, you guessed it, sob like a baby, and that night, my precious girl gave me 3.5 hours of sleep. I think I scared God too because He pulled us through that night.

It is days like that, meltdowns like that, that I think of my 'Band of Sisters.' I could write another whole post on the support and encouragement of friends being as necessary as water but suffice it to say, I have been upheld by so many ladies in my life. From a text from a mom who has been there that says 'you are normal, this is normal!' to a care package unexpectedly dropped off with gossip magazines, cheese and crackers and every chocolate candy bar in the 7-11, to friends sending gifts for baby in the mail (you know how I love mail!) and even a gift for crazy mommy, to emails just affirming that this is a hard time, to breastfeeding expert friends giving life-changing advice, I have been carried by this support. Some are moms, others are not- it does not seem to matter. What continues is a blessing I've long had of girlfriends who make me laugh during times of insanity, who love me when I am not contributing at all to their lives, who drive to east bumble to hang out with us for 30 minutes, who write a kind comment on this blog, who pray for me when I don't even know it. To every one of you who has taken time out of your day to write a note or blog, to pray, to shoot off an email, to listen to me cry, to have patience with me, to decide to continue caring for us, thank you. I am less crazy because of each of you.

Whew! Now to the good. Since Mary Kate was born, Ross will have moments where he believes we are having a 'breakthrough.' Usually it's when her eyes focus on his, when she gives a little half smile, when she gets through a diaper change without alerting the neighbors to her torture. She saves the good stuff for her dad and sadly I am often too tired to be involved or too happy that I have passed the beautiful baton and am doing something I have needed to do all day (usually showering or teeth brushing). But this morning, on her two week birthday, she saved a little for mom. After a rough start to the night (this child is soo angel by day, NOT angel by night), she finally re-learned how to eat at 2:30 am and when I woke up at 6:00, I was amazed she was still asleep. A quick thank you to God and I was back at the Ritz with my glorious sleep. When she finally woke up a quick 30 minutes later, I happily fed her breakfast while she kept those stunning blue eyes fixated on mine the whole time. She didn't fall asleep, instead putting her little hand on my chest and watching her crazy mother. I layed her in the bed and she continued to look around. We sang 'Jesus loves me' and 'This little light of mine' and I basked in seeing my daughters eyes really, truly open and taking in her world. I told her all about what I wanted to teach her in life. I told her how I hoped she had a love for people and a faith that sustains her like her mama. I told her that I hoped she was the tomboy her dad wants, loving the outdoors and not afraid to get dirty. I told her I hoped she would thrive where her mama is weaker- becoming a strong, confident lady who has faith in her ability to change the world in any way she wants. I told her to never question who God made her. And after this heart to heart, my daughter looked straight at me and smiled. I am smart enough to translate that smile into either a) this lady is off her rocker or b) this lady is about to change one heck of a diaper, but I don't care. Today, my kid smiled at her mom.

We ended the morning continuing our little breakthrough by sitting at the pool and saying our first rosary together on the rosary aunt Caroline gave her from Prague. She only got through 3 decades before falling asleep but I assured her that those prayers won't always put her to sleep! We said them in Latin so mommy could show off as mom fondly remembered Mrs. Urbine and Amy S and hoped we'd be able to afford (and convince dad of) a great Catholic education one day. I happily fed my girl for the 9th time today and am excited for a day with Jennifer and Elizabeth and a real live dinner party tonight. Today, Mary Kate will see mama with a shower and make up for the very first time ;)

I am sure the coming weeks (and lifetime?) will continue to be filled with weeks of meltdowns and weeks of breakthroughs. And as long as her dumb mama remembers that she cannot do one bit of it on her own, but "all things through Christ who strengthens me" (and great friends and a rockstar husband), we might just make it!

Mary Kate, on her one week birthday, last week, being held by cousin Mitch.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Cast of Characters

I sincerely hope that in a few weeks I will have something to talk about other than baby. But seeing as how I put her diaper on backwards last night, coherent thoughts are not abounding these days. So photos are all I've got. This weekend, we braved a trip to Savannah with our six day old little girl. During one of her 200 daily feedings, Mary Kate told me she could not bear to miss her Uncle Patrick's wedding. So off we went, and I'm so glad we did. We watched Patrick and Vanessa finally get to profess their vows before God. It was a beautiful ceremony. It also happened to be the first Mass we attended as a family of 3 and receiving the Eucharist, while holding my new baby, in the church where I married her dad, had me in tears. Making it more special, we got to introduce Mary Kate to some very important people.

Uncle Patrick wins the award for best with children. He is energetic and loving and kids gravitate toward him. MK will find lots of trouble with him but will be protected and adored by him too! It was great to finally meet him!

My grandma holding her first great-grandchild for the first time. This woman is the backbone of my faith and I look forward to passing on that faith to Mary Kate. Words cannot express the joy of seeing these two ladies together.

Wrapping love around the newest Sullivan gal~aunt Katie, Keri, Grandma Sullivan, Me-Maw

Mary Kate got to meet Kellie and Annie Garmany. Most of what I know about how to care for a child comes from the years in Athens of nannying for and living with this family. Eason was away at camp but we hope to meet her soon. Annie kissed MK, said "oh, she's so cute" and then ran to play with my dad's dog who was clearly much more interesting. Love it ;)

Ever her daddy's (and her Bodki's) girl, Mary Kate also got out onto the dance floor with Aunt Katie and happily danced to "Shout!" She seemd to like the music and while I'm sure I got some bad looks from letting her out there with all the noise, she was bright-eyed and happy as a clam for the five minutes I let it go on ;)

We ended the weekend with a wonderful dinner with her Grandpa Father Tim. I took a picture with my phone but figuring out how to upload to the computer is, again, beyond my cognitive abilities right now. So, just imagine a beautiful little girl being held by a strong, faithful, youthful! man of God and you will know how truly blessed we are. Thanks Padre for a wonderful dinner and the blessing you gave our girl. Let's amp up the prayers for night time sleep though :)

After much deliberation and counsel, we are happy we decided to head to Savannah. Thanks to Dr. Stu for advice on how to make it work for Mary Kate, to pharmacist Space for advice on how mama could best manage pain, to Ross for finally making the call that we needed to go and for his strength in managing his two high maintenance girls. Thank you to Patrick and Vanessa for a beautiful wedding that we enjoyed so much!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

99 hours

It has been 99 hours since I met my daughter face to face. It has been both 99 months and 99 seconds. I have always known her so how is it possible that she was born less than a week ago? I cannot believe she is mine. For the first time in my life, I have a small understanding of God's love for me. I look at her and know how much he must love me- to give me this gift. I had so many fears, so many desperate prayers before I gave birth. I prayed that we would not have to have a c-section. I prayed that she would be born healthy. I prayed for bonding with her. I prayed that I would not suffer with post-partum depression. The night before she was born, I had a dream with the beautiful hymn from Isaiah 43. The words will always remind me of the night I met my daughter.

Do not be afraid, I am with you. I have called you each by name. Come and follow me, I will give you rest. I love you and you are mine.

Our sweet God used these words, which I have sung so many times in Mass, to reassure me every step of our labor and delivery. When the nurse re-positioned me, hoping to progress labor, I heard "do not be afraid. I am with you."  When I cried from pain, "I have called you each by name." When I became so sick from pushing, "I will give you rest." When I didn't think I had one more push in me, "I love you, and you are mine." And when she was here, safe and healthy, I wondered if I would continue to bond with her, if I would be plagued with the depression I remember from years ago, I could not even utter the fear. It was like God would not let me get the words out- would not let me give the words power, only "Do not be afraid, I am with you."

And He has been with me for 99 hours. It has been both the most difficult and most exhilirating 99 hours of my life, harder and more amazing than I could have ever imagined. Every day I have cried from frustration and pain, joy and awe. It is everything I have always heard it is, and many things I never fathomed. Mostly, these hours have been filled with a love that makes me get a tiny glimpse of the love God has for each of us. And like he reassured me over and over again, I now say to my precious girl,
Do not be afraid, I am with you. I have called you by name. I love you and you are mine.

Thank you, sweet girl, for the best 99 hours of my life.

Saturday, July 10, 2010


It is 11:57 pm, July 10th 2010. I have been awake for 40 hours. I have sent emails with no attachments and photo albums with one picture- a not so flattering one at that. The screen moves in front of my face. But to my left is my husband and to my right, my little girl. I cannot articulate what she means to me, except to say that I do not want to sleep because I want to look at her. I do not want to stop nursing her because it means I would have to put her down. I want to soak every bit of her in, still in utter disbelief that God gave her to me. After I heal and rest, I will make something semi-coherant to describe July 9, 2010. But until then, some photos of the greatest gifts in my life.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

You like me. You really, really like me!

Today we went to the doctor again and things are about the same. We have some decisions to make and thankfully, all of them put us in line for a healthy baby to be born sometime soon. We left the appointment to discuss our options over a yummy Chinese lunch in the boxcar at Orient Express. Admittedly, I drove to lunch overwhelmed and anxious. There are many choices and as I've said before, I don't make decisions well. I am so terribly afraid of making the wrong choice, despite, like I said, knowing all choices point to a healthy baby.

Husband and I narrowed down the field with a pro/con list and came home, committed to praying about it in the coming days. But still, I worried, waxed and waned. I talked to my mom and sister and emailed someone whose opinion I really trust. I both wanted someone to tell me what to do and wanted to make the decision on my own, with confidence.  I told Ross that a part of my fear was that someone would judge me for whatever we choose to do. Negative feedback is not well received by this sensitive girl.

In a conversation with my mother-in-law, I got all the affirmation I wanted. She was so supportive and encouraging, letting me know that our potential decision is a good one, a perfectly acceptable one, and one she fully supports. I hung up feeling like a weight had been lifted off of me. But I can't say I'm proud now.

I realize that the reason the weight was lifted is because I had her approval. It's not so much who it was, but it was, indeed, approval that I was seeking. This certainly does not solidify our decision. That will not be done until we have spent much more time seeking God's guidance and getting counsel wiser than our own. But I keep thinking back to approval.

What is it about me that makes me crave another's approval so much? We could talk all day about birth order and a first child's 'people-pleasing' need. We could talk about all the positive attention I got as a child for good grades or good civic deeds or good choices. Somewhere along the way, I became the kid who thrived on positive feedback. I have made too many decisions in life seeking the approval of other people- even the good decisions. I haven't quite figured out how to make a choice, own it and have pride in it- others' opinions be damned.  Like I said, I know that seeking approval has made me successful in some areas. I have been blessed with mentors and family and friends whose standards were high, just and good.  But did I learn how to make the right choices, or just the choices that made others the happiest, the most proud?

In the next few weeks (days??), I will give birth to a person. And I hope this person has his/her own mind. Quote me on this when I have a two-year-old telling me 'no!', but truly, I want to raise a child who has confidence in themself, who feels safe making a choice, regardless of who will be proud, a child who will seek God's approval before anyone else's. I want my child to feel capable and competent, to look at facts and to TRUST himself to make the right call, even if the choice is not met with acclaim or anyone's approval.

I am so excited for the journey ahead of me. I know that I will be refined and changed and challenged. I hope that of the many things I will learn from my children, one of them will be how to have confidence in myself, how to be strong and stable and sure, regardless of who likes me ;)

Monday, July 5, 2010

What we know about you already

Connor or Mary Kate,

Whichever name ends up being yours, I am learning more about you by the minute. My sweet child, I love you more than I can comprehend. You are the answer to a dream and a prayer I have had since my first Madame Alexander doll, my first cabbage patch kid, my first "my buddy" and "kid sister." But, little miss or mister, I am on to you. I know some things about you already. I am your mother and you will be able to hide very little from me, just as you are not able to do so now.

For instance, you have not been the most active of babies in utero. You can be coy and your movements always make me stop and enjoy them because they are not abundantly made. But yesterday, with every one of the 30 contractions I had, you chose that time to move. You added a couple degrees of pain to your poor, tired mama by choosing those moments to practice the acrobatics you have hidden from us most of these 9.5 months. And the other day, when you moved only once or twice in 2 hours, FREAKING MAMA OUT, you again played coy until I called the doctor and looked like a dramatic, lunatic first time mother. The millisecond I got off the phone with the doctor, you played gymnast again. I'm glad you affirmed your health in there, but next time, can you plllease do that before I call the doctor?

I'm also on to how much you love the comfort of mama's expanding belly. For three days, you have made me think you wanted to come out. First for three hours, then for four, and then for SEVEN hours yesterday, you convinced me you wanted to come out to play with dad and Monty and I. I was sure I was going to get my yankee doodle baby. But again, once I called the doctor at 10pm, you decided you'd had enough. You either changed your mind, or more likely, decided you'd teased your poor, defenseless mother enough. Kid, that was so not nice. Thank goodness I know what we (and Aetna) are paying the doctor or I would feel very badly for interrupting her party. I am learning that the quickest way to get you to change your behavior pattern is to call the doctor. As soon as mama looks like a goof, you are ready to cooperate. I am afraid this may become a pattern for you, making mama humble.

I am learning too that you march to the beat of your own little drum. Lots of friends have suggested many, many ways to getting labor going. None of them matter to you a bit. I am milking the whole 'get a foot rub thing' from dad and justfied a pedicure for the same reason. I have taken more walks in the last week than the whole nine months with you. And while I'm still not eating a jalapeno or eggplant, you don't seem to be affected at all by these tried and true methods of making baby come. I kind of like that about you though. While I'm slightly crazy to meet you, I hope you continue to do the unexpected.

And little person, if you want a couple more days (I'm only giving you days m'love), you can have it. Because you have been safe and sound and happy in there for 9.5 months. You have done your job well, growing and staying healthy. And I am so, so grateful today that, if God continues to answer all my prayers, you will be born healthy. I know of a little boy, Bennett, who I have prayed for for many weeks. My heart breaks that he was born at only a pound and a few ounces. So today, as I looked at his teeny, tiny feet, I decided that if you want to stay put and come out a little chunkier, I can handle that just fine. Because what I know most about you already is that my heart explodes with love for you. And even if you make me crazy, teasing me with contractions for another week, my heart will still explode for you.

Come on out babe, or stay put- just know that we already know we adore you.

Friday, July 2, 2010

An unfamiliar painting

Last night during prayers, husband said something that made me think. I listened to him and sort of stepped out of my own head. I looked in from the outside and realized that what was in front of me didn't look very familiar. The boy on the bed, the dog on the floor, the belly hiding my legs- none of it looked like the picture I've had in my head all my life. Sure, marriage and children has been my dream since I could dream, but the actual details of the picture, it looks different. I can't really explain it. It's a little surreal.

After many years in a long relationship that came to an abrupt, if slightly expected end, I attempted the dating scene in Atlanta. I wouldn't recommend it. I prayed and God answered, much more quickly than I expected. And admittedly, this new person took some getting used to. He was different in every way than anyone I had ever dated. That's not to say that he was the holy grail and guys of the past were bad. I really love the cheesy country song, "God blessed the broken road that led me straight to you." Some of those paths were broken and some of them were exactly the steps I needed to take to get to this unexpected picture. But the boy who would become the main fixture in my picture is different. He is not 'Southern,' in the UGA frat boy sense. (I still love a Georgia frat boy. Bring on the croakies and boat shoes please.) He has never driven a truck (don't get me started on his car though ;), or worked on a farm. And while I find him immensely charming, he has a  a directness to him, a huge, tornado like presence that can shade his gentleness. He is exactly the man I never knew I needed.

And this life we are creating, it it unlike the picture as well. I did not foresee that I would become a mother (well, become pregnant) so effortlessly. My painting never included a dog of any sort nor a home with black leather sofas (love you babe!). But now, this dog has cuddled me on the kitchen floor and let me cry into him when Grady days became too rough or baby hormones won for the day. And these sofas, while I can't wait to put them in a basement, are cool on these hot summer days as we attempt to save money in energy costs. And this baby- well, this baby- it's the best part of the painting that I wouldn't have dared be to so bold to put in my picture a few years ago.

It has been a whirlwind. I met my husband months after a very long relationship and honestly, just weeks after final, final strings had been cut from that season in my life. We went from dating to 'we're going to marry each other' in another few short months and were engaged shortly after that. We had, you guessed it, a short engagement and were pregnant a month after our wedding. My heart beats faster just thinking about it. I am not at all a decisive person, so all these big changes in life leave me breathless at times still. I am thankful that I wasn't completely in charge of all these decisions. I don't know that I would have had the courage.

 On our wedding day, I took a moment to myself in the back of the church. The person at the end of the aisle, the life awaiting me, was still so surreal- so unfamiliar almost. I had a moment with Jesus and, as hokey as it sounds, felt the most enormous peace wash over me. I felt God affirm that, yes, Keri, this picture looks different from the one YOU created in your head all those years. But the picture in front of you is the one I have chosen for you. Walk down the aisle and trust this new picture. I have told Ross that every day of this marriage, I have grown to love him more. And that has been an answer to an intentional and passionate prayer. I knew that walking down the aisle to him was an act of faith and that the Lord would reward that faith with a new, more intense love for this man every day. And reward me He has.

And while every once in awhile, like last night, I look at this belly and this man and this life and think 'whoa!', I fall asleep so thankful that I am not the one holding the paintbrush.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Pray not to miss this

I am writing from home, my first day off from work as we wait for little baby Ninness. (sorry to anyone if this is tmi. Remember these blogs are our journals as well!) As of Tuesday, we were 4 cm dilated, 75% effaced and at -1 station. Doctor Julia was very surprised and did not expect us to get to next week's appointment. I went to work Wednesday but between some anxiety and some contractions at inopportune times, i.e. in patients' rooms, I decided to stay home today. We have lots of contractions but nothing too consistent yet. We've also had some not so dignified other things occur that are teaching me about my need to release some of my major modesty. Childbirth and pregnancy are clearly not for the modest.

So, while in the midst of waiting for little one, I am totally pulling a Keri. I am half hoping baby comes so I can quit wondering "is this it?" I am also half hoping that baby waits until Saturday when Grandpa Pat gets home from the middle east. Yesterday I called mom and Katie, stressing out that they might not make it here in time and then insisting they stay home until contractions were regular. I am a walking emotional ping pong ball. One minute, I am confident in God's plan for the baby's birthday. The next, I am trying to figure out the best day to have a baby, keeping all the important schedules in mind (dad's return from the war, Patrick's wedding). Someone needs to chill the heck out. Not pointing any fingers.

That need to chill out brought me to my morning blogs. Betsy wrote today about praying 'not to miss this.' She gives credit to another precious blog but the point is that God gives us thousands of tiny moments a day that we totally miss. Since contractions started at 6:30 am, I missed the beauty of the squirrels scurrying around on our front lawn, knowing how much Monty would love them. I missed my husband stroking my arm. I missed my puppy smiling so sweetly, begging (successfully, sorry Ross) for the pepperoni off my Little Caesar's breakfast. I missed my husband's kiss goodbye (did he kiss me goodbye??).  I have between 24 hours and a week or so left when my time is my own. I can blast out to Kevin and Taylor in the morning in my car and not a 'frog song' like Besty. I can watch a baby story, instead of Baby Einstein, like my precious friend Natalie. I can do whatever I like with my time and my husband's time. And while I know these girls wouldn't trade a millisecond of their lives to go back in time and nor will I, the lesson is to 'not miss this', whatever this is.

Today, these are the last days this baby belongs all to me. I don't have grubby grandma hands or aunt fingers stretching to take baby out of my arms. I don't have to share with daddy or cousins or anyone. These days, this baby belongs to mama. These are the last days I can freely go out to eat with Ross without paying a babysitter or bribing a relative. These are the last days I can walk the dog, just mama and puppy (which happens too seldomly). So, today, on this day, I am going to take the advice of my college friend turned blog friend and pray, during some needed quiet time, that I am present in the moment this July 1, 2010. I will pray not to miss the baby who just quickly moved at my request (and the assitance of a big gulp of coke), the feeling of that babe's knobby Ninness knees poking me. What a wonderful feeling.

To Little baby, we cannot wait (like really cannot wait, please hurry up) to meet you. We cannot wait to know that you are safe and healthy and to see the beautiful face God has given us to raise. Hopefully, God will continue to inspire mama, through other people who so humbly and freely share their hearts on the great community that can be the world wide web. You are loved beyond comprehension. We hope you love us too!