Category: Motherhood (Page 2 of 5)


When life gets real in the grocery store parking lot

I can really only count on one hand how many times I have lost control of my emotions in public… and that’s not counting when I’ve been moved to tears in church.

A few years ago, when my youngest baby girl was starting her first day of pre-school, I decided to go to the grocery store by myself.  I had this idea that it would be a magical experience because I was BY MYSELF without any children running around and asking if they could have every bad thing or toy they came into contact with.  As I entered the produce section, an overwhelming feeling took hold of me and tears began to roll down my face.  My little helper – the one who loved to get the plastic, see-through sacks and twist-ties for me – would no longer be making these morning trips with me.  I remember someone coming up to me and saying “Hey!  How’s it feel?  You don’t have any kids with you!”  As I turned to look at her, her face changed and she said “Oh no!  What’s wrong?”  All I could say was “I don’t even know what I’m doing right now?  I thought I would enjoy it, but I am so not!”

It got worse as I went through the store, too – because, what is up with that music?  There have been a few times where I have danced around to the tunes playing in the grocery store, but I go to that place A LOT and, for the most part, the songs have an “institutional” quality to them.  I find myself shaking my head in disagreement with most of it.

A few days ago I was having an emotionally charged day…and it was still pretty early in the morning.  It was a Friday, so I should have been happy, but we were in the middle of “stupid-busy” season – where every member of our family has something important they needed to do or somewhere important they needed to be all weekend – and all those things were miles apart.  I had a birthday date scheduled with my husband (and it’s for a milestone birthday) that was going to have to change because of said schedules.

And I was tired.  Tired of trying to figure out everyone’s stuff – including my own, which is bad enough in itself.  Come to think of it, I believe it is always about this time of the school year when I have my first big mental breakdown.

On this day it would take place in the grocery store parking lot (before I even went in).


I had lost all control while I was parked in my spot, talking to my mom on the phone.  It wasn’t anything she had done or said, it was just us talking about life.  After we hung up, my face hit the steering wheel and I sobbed.  I kept urging myself -“Get a hold of yourself, woman!  You have things to do – dry it up!”

Looking around the parking lot, it didn’t seem to be very busy, so I cleaned up my mess of a face as much as I could (luckily, I hadn’t put on makeup yet, so I had that going for me?) and headed in to get what we needed as fast as possible.

I spent some time in the greeting card section – one, because I actually needed some birthday cards, but also because I didn’t want to make eye-contact with anyone for a while and this seemed like a great place to hide out.  However, something made me look up and there was one of my friends, with her dad, whom I had yet to meet.

Isn’t that the way it works.

I hid out there for a little longer – and I’m not real sure what God was trying to do to me, but I turned around and saw a good-looking man that looked really familiar walking right toward me.  Crap… I sleep with that man.

“Hey!  You were hiding!” and then his face changed – “Why have you been crying?”

What I wanted to say to my husband who I never run into at the grocery store was, “What the heck are you doing here?”  Instead, I started crying again.

I mean, HELLO!  What is the deal?  First of all, why am I crying?  Secondly, why am I crying in the grocery store?  And also, what is that music???  I felt like I was on the edge of insanity…

Before I had turned onto aisle four, I had seen the friend and her dad, my husband, my grandma, and my ex-boyfriend from high school’s parents (true story).  I really should have remembered that you run into everyone you know when you are about to lose your mind.

Life gets real at the most inappropriate times.

Sometimes life makes you say “yes, yes I will buy the pre-packaged cookie dough today – and I will enjoy every raw, risk-taking bite!”  Sometimes life has you buying a bag of Cheetos Puffs so that you can do your best Winona Ryder impression from Reality Bites.  And that’s okay, as long as we remember that the day will come soon when we will be crying in the gym parking lot.

My friend said it well in her text to me as I left the store that day… “A good cry never hurt anyone.  Just be sure to pick yourself back up.  You are blessed!”

If I wasn’t blessed, I would have nothing to cry about.  I’ll just try to do it in the comfort of my closet next time.

Blessings, friends!



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What I wish my daughter knew…

If you have a daughter, then you know that there are things you wish you could engrain in her mind – things that she would not only remember, but apply to her life.

Being a mom of four daughters, I am finding myself daily trying to say these things in different ways.  I thought if I could write it down – because, let’s face it, I’m much better with the written word – maybe I could share it with them – and you could share with yours…


  1.  We are not against you.  I know it seems that way sometimes, but we really do have a rhyme and reason for telling you “not yet” or “no” or “not only ‘no,’ but never.”  We have your best interest at heart, I promise.  We will most likely make mistakes in this parenting journey – that’s right, we won’t always get it right – but we always love you, only want what is best for you, and never want to see you hurt…
  2. There are lessons in the hurt.  Those heartbreaks and struggles you are going through are for a reason.  And it hurts us (more than you can even imagine) to see you going through hard times.  Some of our greatest lessons in life are in those gut-wrenching tough days.  Not only will you get through it, but you will come out better on the other side of it.
  3. People say things they don’t mean.  The words that come out of others’ mouths really shouldn’t matter to us – I know they do – but they shouldn’t.  Those words will change with time.  Don’t let someone who doesn’t know the real you, change who you are by the things they say in anger, in jealousy, or out of spite.  Choose to be around people who lift you up and encourage you.  Which brings me to…
  4. Be kind.  It really is so easy to do and can change someone’s day – or someone’s life – for the better.  I cannot say this with enough emphasis.  Be bigger than the hatefulness and the drama.  We NEED more people to be kind in this world.  People may not remember all the wonderful things you say about them, but they will definitely remember the bad.
  5. Your worth does not come from the “LIKES” you accumulate.  For the most part, your parents have been through the same kind of stuff you have been – except for the social media monsters.  Well, not to the degree YOU are, anyway.  Oh kid, how I wish you knew how petty all that stuff is.  Your worth can’t be shown on Instagram – because it comes from your heart and no one can see that on any social media platform.  Don’t look for outside acceptance – look to those who you KNOW love you – and your biggest advocates and “likers” are right inside your house.
  6. Our heart aches as you grow.  As much as we love watching you come into your own and become your own person.  As much as we love seeing your skills and talents and specific interests grow – our heart is breaking.  We have prayed for you and held you and kissed your little faces and agonized over whether or not we are doing the right things for you.  You will never know the kind of love we have for you until you have little ones of your own.  And then your heart will ache with all these same overwhelming feelings.
  7. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL.  I seriously got the chills and started crying as I typed those words.  Precious girl, you are “fearfully and wonderfully made!”  You are unique and special and your beauty is far-reaching when you realize where it truly comes from!  Embrace the way God made you.  I promise you, when your heart is shining through your eyes, people will be mesmerized by you.  Stop listening to the enemy who only wants to tear you down so that you are incapable of becoming who God intends for you to be.  You are perfectly, amazingly beautiful.



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When it’s hard to communicate…

If you have more than one child, you know how very different they can all be.  Having four daughters, I know that I have to approach each one in a different way sometimes – they are all so very different – especially when it comes to communication.

Our oldest daughter texts – mostly with emojis.  Our youngest daughter is fairly easy to talk with – unless it is morning and then she’s mute.

Then, there are the twins… those two are night and day.  I have to remind myself often that when I was pregnant with them, we prayed that they wouldn’t be exactly the same – that they would have their own little personalities and identities.  Boy, was that prayer answered – and I believe that God was laughing when He said “You got it!”  They look nothing alike – one is a daddy’s girl and loves to be outdoors – the other is a momma’s girl and loves to sit inside and read.  One will give you very little information when she is asked a question – the other gives you every little detail and loves to talk.

The daddy’s girl – that’s the one I have a hard time communicating with.  So, I came up with an idea that seems to be working.  As a writer, I know that I can get my point across better when I write it down.  Not only that, but the written word is something that can be seen over time.  My sister gave me some cute little journals as a graduation gift and I told Kenna that one of the journals was for me and her – that we could write to each other in this journal when we have something we want to say.  She loved the idea and immediately started writing in it…


As of right now, nothing earth-shattering or deep has been written in this little book of ours, but it’s a start and it is something that she can keep forever.  Of course, two of the other girls wanted their own little journal to write back and forth to me, as well.


The written word – it stays with us and we can revisit it often.  They will always have a way to look back at the things I’ve said to them – and it will be in our handwriting.  If you’re having trouble communicating with someone, give this a try!



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