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Betrothed Babies Blog

Sometimes about babies, sometimes about us, always cathartic

She is Clothed with Strength and Dignity

I just finished a wonderful Bible study meeting I began a few weeks ago as something to help me in my spiritual growth. I figure since I’ve been working very hard on my physical being, I should also make sure to work on my mental, emotional, and spiritual well being. To be well rounded and strong in all elements of my life. To be the best me I can be. To be intentionally trying and working on all elements of my human being. I’m trying. I’m really, really, really trying. But, I have been having some high anxiety days lately. I mean like days I haven’t had in years. Where all I want to do is crawl into a hole and hibernate. Quit life for awhile until the anxiety passes. Get rid of something. Sleep for 10 years…or at least until Covid is over.

I told Nick that I wanted to be 8 or 108, because then my anxiety would be gone. Or at least lessened. Because at 8, everyone else is worried for you and you’re just having fun, and at 108 you’re either dead and the anxiety is also gone, or you’ve lived a great, long life, and you don’t worry either.

Now, I recognize these are not viable options. They are not realistic. They are not helpful. They are not “being the best me”. And they’re also not what I’m choosing, but I need to acknowledge that they’re there. They are very real and very mind consuming and very very very very very persistent. Essentially the entire month of August my brain has looked something like this: It’s August, the “Sunday” of the summer, I need to spend as much precious time with my kids and family as possible, but wait! I also need to set up my classroom and plan my lessons because school is starting, and I can literally only teach about 10% of what I’m used to teaching in the way I’m used to teaching it. How can I teach music when I’m not allowed to sing?! But, my family (obviously) takes priority, so let’s do something fun with them. Maybe we could even adventure somewhere. AHHH! It’s corona time! Why would I think to take them anywhere that’s not our house or our yard? Because it’s so life giving to spend some time in new scenery and you’re being safe, distancing, wearing a mask, etc… But then I come home and second guess every choice I’ve ever made in my life and guess what? My lessons still aren’t planned, but I don’t have time alone to work on it because Nick is working and sleeping when he’s not at work and when he’s awake I can get some work done, but then I’m missing on my kids playing and time with my husband and time together as a family, and I don’t want to miss out on that, but I can’t go into school unprepared because I literally don’t have an arsenal of “I need to fill 5 minutes, so let’s play this game” songs anymore because I can’t sing and we can’t touch each other, and everything needs to be sanitized and how many times a day will I have to say “please keep your mask on your face?” And then what happens if we go to online learning? How am I supposed to have Z and Vinny and myself all on different zoom calls at the same time and helping the boys with their school work and teaching classes and getting Sydney snacks because I’m still mom and Daddy is sleeping because he still has to work. And what about Christmas? There’s no way we can have people over or go anywhere because it’s also flu season and corona and probably wave 2 or will there not be a wave 2 because no one even cares to take this seriously enough, and am I even taking this seriously enough? I think so, but maybe not. And am I still going to be able to work out every day when I go back to school? What if I get sick? How will I quarantine? What if Nick gets sick? How will he quarantine? I don’t even want to think about the kids getting sick because that will spiral me into even more anxiety and and and and and and and…

I know. Be present. The past is gone and the future hasn’t happened yet. Stay in the fricken boat. But, wow…these waves are strong. The boat is rocking, and maybe I’d be better on my own. Maybe I could jump out and make it and save myself and my family.

Nope. No, I wouldn’t. That would not be a good idea.

And so, we circle around to the Bible study I just finished. We’re talking about Philippians, but there was a reflection passage that was titled “Midlife Crisis” so, of course, I read it because, even though I think I’m too young for a midlife crisis, maybe that’s (part of) what this is, and it brings me to this Bible verse: Proverbs 31:25 – She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.

It’s a pretty popular phrase, one often seen on posters and quoted a lot, but, the reflection included these 4 extra words “…because she trusts God.” She can laugh/smile at the future because she trusts God. We talked a lot tonight about obedience, and how we need to be obedient to God’s word and God’s will for our lives. That just hit me and stuck.

I can smile and the future. I can laugh at the days to come. I am clothed in strength and dignity. Because I trust God. He will provide. He has already provided. Because I am here, my family is safe, my friends are safe. My life is beautiful and blessed. My anxiety is high, but He can also calm that. Because I trust God, I can and I WILL smile towards the future instead of wishing it away.

One day at a time. One moment at a time. One breath at a time. Be strong, trust God. I am clothed in strength and dignity; I can laugh at days to come because I trust God.

Heavy

2020 is a heavy year. To think back to January when things started out quite optimistically with talk of 2020 vision and this truly being our year. Wow, things have changed.

I love New Years Eve. It’s one of my favorite holidays. There’s something cleansing about starting a new calendar year. I know it’s just another day and things don’t really change unless you let them, but still… it’s always been one of my favorite holidays. Something about counting down to midnight, the abundance of hope, and joy. And this year we rang in the new year with some very dear friends – the kids all played (and stayed up until midnight!) with their friends as well. What I wouldn’t give to go back to that time.

This week has been extra heavy for me, and it’s only Wednesday. Continue reading “Heavy”

Jesus is Not a Souffle

So, it’s Easter which is, arguably, the most joyful day of the church year.  Sure, Christmas is great, but there’s something wonderful about going through the suffering of Lent for 40 days, recounting Jesus’ passion and death, and then getting to sing “Alleluia!” again because Jesus has risen.  It’s always been one of my favorite holidays because of the insane amount of joy that comes with it.

Joy.  I’m really struggling with finding my own joy today. Continue reading “Jesus is Not a Souffle”

Smile

I remember when I was 26 and going through a terrible break up, at a job I hated, and generally feeling like maybe life wasn’t supposed to work out the way I wanted it to.  Or that I wasn’t supposed to be happy…like, maybe this is just how life is.  I was talking to someone, and I kept asking why?  Why is this happening to me?  Why am I feeling this way?  Why, why, why?  He told me, “You can’t ask ‘why’ because you won’t always get an answer.  The question you need to be asking is ‘what now?'” Continue reading “Smile”

Rainbows

So, it’s officially been one week since I’ve left my house.  I mean, I’ve gone outside, but I haven’t left my yard or neighborhood.  This is the way of the world now.  This is our new normal.  Shelter in place.  Stay at home.  It’s an order.  It’s a law.  It’s for the good of everyone.  It can and will save lives.

But it also can last a long time and probably will last longer than anyone who is not well versed in the study of pandemics imagines.  I’m trying to wrap my brain around the fact that this will most likely not be “weeks” that we’re talking about but “months”…I don’t even want to speculate “years” because that’s getting way ahead of myself.  Look, I don’t know.  I’m a music teacher who reads the news and listens to Governor DeWine and Dr. Amy Acton (a fricken rock star, I tell you) so I know no more than the average person.  I’m just writing because it’s giving me something to do, somewhere to put my thoughts, an outlet when all else seems lost.  Continue reading “Rainbows”

Get Back in the Boat

Matthew 8:23-27

Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”

He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.

The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”

Jesus calms the waters.  He can.  He will.  He does.  Our job?  Stay in the boat.  It’s so tempting right now to jump out and try to save ourselves, to swim away, to nearly drown because it feels like we’re in control.  Continue reading “Get Back in the Boat”

State of the Family

So, I promised a “state of the family” blog post, and here it is – so soon after my last one.  Could it be I’m actually going to be able to write more?

Anyway, as my kids get older, I struggle with telling their stories.  How much should I write?  What should I say?  What’s appropriate for me to share verses what’s theirs to share?  I think I’ll keep this blog for my feelings, and, while yes, many of my feelings revolve around being a mom, I’m not blogging anonymously, so I won’t share anything I wouldn’t share publicly anyway or without my kid’s knowledge and consent.

The short is, our family is good.  We’re all in a fairly good place right now.  We have hit some type of “status quo” with 3 kids, and we’re managing along day to day.  There are ups and downs, but nothing earth shattering.  And maybe that’s ok.

Vinny and Sydney love and fight as only siblings 20 months apart can do.  It seems that at least once a day they’re teaming together scheming against Husband and I, telling each other they are best friends, and also “never ever ever playing” with each other again.  So, typical, right?  I hope they remain this close.  I hope they realize that adoption and biology don’t mean much when it comes to their love for and relationship with each other.

Z is 12.  If you know anyone who is 12 or you remember being 12, you know that three word sentence says more than most soliloquies.  I have a lot more that I could say, but I’ll just leave it at that…

A short update, but good to be writing again.

 

 

Change Our Hearts

Well, it’s been over a year since I’ve used this blog to write.  Needless to say, having three kids, a full time job, and trying to maintain some sort of social life takes it’s toll.  (Also, no one naps anymore…naps were the best time I had to write.)  I’d really like to get into writing more – I think maybe I’ll try to incorporate that into my daily routine.  You know, along with parenting, being a wife, a teacher, exercising, cooking, trying to have time with friends, trying to have time to myself…something is always lacking, something is always getting less time and attention.  And, I suppose if it was going to be something, writing is the most expendable, but man, is it therapeutic to sit here and be typing this right now.  However, that’s not the purpose of this post…I’ll do a “state of the family” post later, but this post is about changing my heart, specifically during this season of Lent. Continue reading “Change Our Hearts”

Stressed is Desserts Spelled Backwards

Disclaimer:  This post has nothing to do with desserts.  Sorry.

I read an article called Mothers are Drowning in Stress, and I felt so many emotions about it.  I even started crying while reading it.

Let me back up a bit – I’ve been fortunate enough to be home with my kids for the past 2 weeks as Vinny has been recovering from an adenotonsillectomy.

As a teacher, I know we have a certain amount of paid days off (personal/sick/whatever) per year, but I always try not to use them since we have built in vacations and days off into the school year. Continue reading “Stressed is Desserts Spelled Backwards”

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