Learning to let them go

The teenage years. Oh, honey we’re just starting. The boyfriends. The girlfriends. The hormones. The attitudes. The DRAMA. And we have double the trouble with TWO teens in our house!

They can be absolutely dreadful. They are awful to get up in the mornings. They are careless at times. They are quick to give a sassy answer. They leave clothes on the floor. They forget everything.

But through all of that I see them finding themselves. I see them trying too hard. I see them taking chances and being afraid. I see them creating their own style. I see them trying to fit in. I see them being creative. I see them being independent. I see them. I truly see a glimpse of who they will become.

I see what they want me to see. But I also see what a mama sees. Our babies are growing up and learning to fly. How in the world do we let them go?

In a recent conversation with a good friend of mine, we were sharing about our kids and she sang these lyrics to an ABBA song from the movie Mamma Mia!…

“Slipping through my fingers all the time
Do I really see what’s in her mind
Each time I think I’m close to knowing
She keeps on growing”

Every time we get to a point as mamas where we think we have a routine and we know what makes our kids happy, sad, or mad… they change in the blink of an eye. And it’s that fast. And we’re just trying to keep up.

The scariest part is not knowing what’s going on in their crazy little minds. It wasn’t that long ago that I had a baby girl who told me everything and now that baby girl is taller, prettier, and quieter. It can feel so incredibly lonely when you realize they have a mind of their own and don’t need you as often.

These teenagers… they want what they want. They want to do what they want to do. And as much as I feel like they’re slipping out of our control more and more with each passing day, I know that I have to let it happen. No matter how much it scares me. No matter how much I will worry about them. No matter how much we preach. No matter how much I pray they will make good decisions.

They will be okay.

They will be okay because we have been raising them in a good home from the start. We have instilled values in them and tried to teach them respect. We are hard on them about everything but we make sure they know we love them too. We have made them do their own laundry and get along with their siblings. They’ve learned how to do yard work and keep up with their responsibilities like washing dishes. We’ve made them apologize and learn how to talk to people. We’ve taught them to empathize with each other. We’ve taught them to care for one another. We’ve shown them what real love looks like.

Now all we can do is love them. Love them and let them make mistakes. Pick them back up when they fall. Listen to them when they allow us to. Be there when they need us.

What they don’t know is that in the process of them finding their own way and figuring out who they are, they are still showing me who I am, too.

Just like them, I’m afraid but also taking chances. I’m trying to find my way in this thing called motherhood. I’m going to forget everything too, and I’ll probably, definitely be dreadful at times.

They will be okay. I will be okay. We will spend these days together just like we’ve always done… but when it’s time for them to fly, we’ll let them go.

Xoxo,

MK

Miscarriage Grief Doesn’t Just Go Away

Miscarriage Grief Doesn’t Just Go Away

It’s been one whole year since we sat in that ultrasound room waiting to see a little bean and hear a strong heartbeat. After just recovering from a chemical pregnancy just a month before, I truly was not expecting to hear the words, “I’m so sorry. There is no heartbeat.” I don’t think anything can prepare you for how you feel in that moment. Sadness, shock, guilt, confusion. You can’t even comprehend the next steps, much less process all of your feelings.

You had a baby. You were pregnant. Then you weren’t. It was over that quick. And your life was forever changed.

What you once knew about being pregnant is gone. All of those butterflies, and excited feelings, the immediate planning, and eagerness to share… becomes nonexistent. Because from now on, you have lost a child. Your baby died. From the moment they told you, your experience with pregnancy has completely changed. In the days ahead, doubt and worry will have a new meaning. This kind of loss truly changes you. After losing a baby, you start to live in fear of losing everything else around you.

Pregnancy after miscarriage has allowed me to be happy while hurting, and healing all at the same time. It has still allowed me to feel excited, happy, and so grateful, especially the further along we get! But in the back of my mind, there are always the “what ifs” and knowing what could happen. Thoughts that might would have skimmed my mind the first time I was pregnant, now consume me. What if our baby dies? Am I doing something wrong? Maybe I shouldn’t do this, or that. Have I felt the baby move enough? The internal questions are endless and constant. Pregnancy after miscarriage has been a strange mixture of feeling hope again and feeling completely terrified that something could go wrong.

I had no clue how common miscarriages were until it happened to me and I shared our story. Most women grieve silently. And I can see why… You feel broken. You feel not good enough, fragile, and completely heartbroken. You feel like your body has failed you. You feel the most lonely that you could ever feel. It is so very painful. Miscarriage is so unfair.

We have had a rough time. We have experienced heartache that no one should have to experience. We lost a baby. And that is not something to be compared to anyone else’s losses, anyone else’s grief, or anyone else’s struggle to move on. I had to come to terms with the fact that yes, there are other people who have experienced horrible tragedies, but I needed to accept that our grief is real too. That is harder than you think.

Our story is one that we will continue to tell. Not because we want people to know, but because I know how reading stories like this can help comfort you if you’re going through it. Now, one year later to the day, I still feel that grief. I still wish I could have seen that baby’s squishy face. I still wonder ALL of the things… what she would have looked like, what her first word would have been, whether she would have sucked her thumb, and the list goes on. I grieve for the entire life we had planned for that baby. All of the firsts, the lasts, and the in between.

Miscarriage isn’t something you can just “get over” and anyone going through it deserves for that to be acknowledged. To those of you who have been through it or are going through it right now, I see you. I have felt your pain. Although there isn’t a rule book on grief and how long it takes to move on or how you are supposed to feel… one thing has been certain for me… and that is it’s okay to feel how you’re feeling. There will be hope again.

Xoxo,

MK

Read our full miscarriage story here: https://maryfaison.com/2019/02/17/our-miscarriage-story/

Get Yourself Together

Get Yourself Together

When things aren’t going your way and you feel like giving up… how do you manage to get it together? Because we always do right? Somehow we always get it together and life goes on. When we think we’re too tired to get dressed or cook dinner or run in the grocery store… or when things get even worse and we don’t even want to get out of bed… we always do.

Think about this: Perspective. Your perspective is shaped by your experiences… the environment you live in, and the people who surround you, the things you’ve witnessed. When you choose your own perspective, you are choosing your attitude and behavior. You are also choosing how others perceive you.

I’ve been struggling lately with choosing the right attitude. “My people” see me as strong and full of energy. At our recent Patti Presson Fitness Intentional You meeting, we played a get to know you game. We went around the room – a room full of complete strangers – and everyone wrote one word (without you knowing the word they were writing) that they could use to describe you in the short 20 minutes they had been around you. When we were done we looked at our words that complete strangers had used to describe us. Mine read “hardworking, organized, determined, cute, hardworking again, and feisty.” It’s funny really… if I look back on my past I can think about things that have shaped me to be all of these words.

That got me thinking. People are always telling me “I don’t know how you do it.” And honestly I don’t either. Thinking about the words that were written about me reminded me that I must be doing something right because I have everyone fooled!

The truth is I’m not superwoman. I have mom guilt, complete breakdowns, cry and curse, and some days feel like I’m barely making it…. just. like. you.

When I think about what lifts me back up… what makes me feel “ok” again… it’s my people. It’s taking time to actually be with my kids, it’s the lunch talks with my favorite co-workers, it’s the end of the day showers I take with Gene every night because that’s when we finally have a moment to talk, it’s the friends I have that I know I can run to and spill my guts and bitch about everything just for them to tell me something to make me feel better even if it’s just their honesty, it’s joking around with my sister at my parents’ house… it’s being around the people I care about and who I know care about me.

We can define happy in so many ways. I’m so grateful, thankful, and honored to live the life I live. I’ve seen people who have really struggled. The couple who has just buried their baby or the young girl who has 6 kids in Head Start and her landlord is kicking her out for roaches. I’ve seen people struggle, hurt, and I am 100% sure I’ve witnessed people struggle and hurt right in front of me and I didn’t even know they were going through something.

This is perspective. I might feel like I’m drowning today. But I’m not. I remember those people who taught me to be grateful. I surround myself with the people who care about me even if I just want to crawl in my bed under the covers and sleep.

When YOU are feeling like you can’t go on.. remember the people you’ve met, lean on someone you love, go outside and literally look on the bright side. I’ve got to choose the right attitude every time.. so I can keep fooling everyone? Maybe. Maybe I’m just trying to convince myself I can do it all.

Get yourself together because you always do. And life will go on.