Thursday, November 6, 2014



The past three months have been growing months for me. Growing months, with growing pains. But at the same time, I’ve also had a calmness, hopefulness, and odd sort of peace through the whole process too. A ton has changed for my family in the last three months.


Obviously, the biggest change has been adding little brother to our family. Big sister took that change the hardest. I’ll be honest, the first two weeks weren’t pretty at my house. She struggled to accept the fact that momma just couldn’t play with her and focus on her all day…in fact, momma was stuck on the couch one out of every three hours trying to nurse baby brother. That’s not an easy thing for a two-year-old to adjust to! However, after two weeks or so, she started to understand the routine and began to return to her joyful self. Since then, we’ve certainly had our fair share of tough days, but I’m happy to say that we have more good days than bad. ;) {It’s tough being a toddler, isn’t it?!}

IMG_2152{The kids with Eugene while he covered a HS volleyball match. Big sister is playing with a mini volleyball she was given.}

It wasn’t just our family that changed. Eugene took a new job at a new school and is now an Athletic Director and teaches a couple classes, instead of a full time teacher who coaches two sports. We really miss his old school {just 5 min from our house} and his friends there, but he truly enjoys his job now. He said for the first time, he looks forward to doing his job. He loves students and the school atmosphere, but he just didn’t love teaching. Now, he can still be around students and teachers, but with a sports focus; it’s perfect for him.

It’s a huge blessing to see him happy with his work, but it hasn’t come without sacrifices too. He was hired and started his job just a week or so before baby brother was born. He had a ton of catch-up work to do since he was hired so late, and instead of his plan {prior to this new job} of taking off 2-3 full weeks to stay home with me after the delivery, he no longer was able to do that. He only stayed home a couple days rather than a few weeks. Thankfully, he had some flexibility in his hours, which helped, but it was a much different circumstance than when we had big sister {it was the summer so he was off for a full month with us.} In addition, the AD job requires many evening hours, especially for Fall season which started right when little brother was born. It’s been a personal challenge for me to be supportive and encouraging to him as he works such long days, when I’m equally exhausted from lack of sleep and just the wearing nature of being on my own all day and night with a toddler and a newborn and trying to nurse. I’ve really been feeling God working on my selfish nature and also on my interactions and words towards Eugene. I’m trying to think over my words instead of just spilling them everywhere, encouraging him in action and words, and really trying to see his true intentions before my fatigued self assumes the negative. I won’t pretend that I’ve done well at this, but I’m aware of my incredible ineptness, and I’m trying to improve each day. It’s been a personal refining process for sure, and I’m thankful that his job change has challenged me to be a better wife. I will say, Eugene has been so kind to get home after 17 hours of working and go straight to the sink to wash dishes or immediately do a load of laundry or do bath time so I can have a break. He has been working so hard in the office and then coming home and working just as hard. He’s clearly put our family as his first priority – supporting us with his job, and doing his best to make us his focus when he isn’t working. I appreciate how hard he’s working at being a husband and father, and I wouldn’t want to walk through all this change with anyone else.



Another huge change for us is that I am no longer a full-time Event Coordinator and Department Manager who splits time at the office and at home with a toddler. I recently walked through one of the hardest decisions in my life to actually to implement: I quit my job. Gah, even typing that stirs up some tears of sadness. We planned for me to become a stay-at-home mom when I was pregnant with big sister, well, actually way back when we first talked about getting married. We purposely bought a foreclosed {read: cheaper} house, focused hard on paying off debt, and made other decisions to set us up to be able to survive {barely} on one income. But once I told my employer I didn’t plan on coming back to work after having big sister, God led us a different direction with my job and the offer to work from home a few days a week. Two years later, with this pregnancy, we were pretty certain {unless God showed us a different way again} that I should leave my job once little brother was born. I know it’s what’s best for my family, but it didn’t make it any easier to actually do. I love my job and my employer. I would be happy doing that job until I retire, which I know is a rare thing. I love my coworkers. They’re my friends, and to leave them without a manager during the busy season just broke my heart. However, countering all those feelings was an even stronger feeling on certainty that for right now, in this phase of life, for my family, I need to be home with my children, 100% available to them, and focused on pouring into their lives. Now, just because I knew it was the right decision, didn’t mean it wasn’t a sacrifice to actually make it. It’s a scary thing to quit a job you love and one in which you’ve worked so hard. Selfishly, on the surface I wanted to keep working; however, I just knew deep down it was the best choice for me or my family right now for me to quit…even if it didn’t necessarily feel right every second along the way.

When I actually had my meeting to resign, God graciously confirmed my decision with very positive feedback and affirmation from my CEO and other coworkers. Despite others telling me it was a good choice, once the decision was final, I really struggled mentally with no longer working outside of being a mom. I’m a type A personality. I like having clear expectations, clear measurements for success, clear feedback, and comfortable finances. Also, {I don’t mean this to sound conceited}, but I like doing a job I’m good at. All of those things, they just don’t exist in the SAHM world. I don’t feel like I’m ever doing a good job as a mom. {I’m pretty sure most mom’s experience that feeling too.} I don’t have any clear measurements for success or feedback. My two-year-old can’t tell me I did a good job at the end of the day, and honestly, neither can my husband. I’m learning to try to find my affirmation from my relationship with Christ, but it’s a hard thing for me right now.

My friend gave me good advice of setting goals for the day, like to keep my cool and not lose my temper, prioritize my kids above my to-do list, teach them something new each day, etc. That has helped me stay motivated and focused. And honestly, I’m so busy and involved with two right now, I can’t even imagine working. I always said that I wanted to do my job well, and I would quit my job if I felt like I wasn’t doing my job in the office well or my job at home as a mom well. As humbling as it has been to experience this, I’m completely sure I cannot do both jobs well. Even doing one {being a mom} is a stretch! I’ve been both a working mom and a SAHM, and let me tell you, both are incredibly hard. I Right now, being a stay at home mom is the hardest job I’ve ever done. It’s also the most important job I’ve ever done, so perhaps that’s why it seems so hard to me…I put lots of pressure on myself with the immense responsibility I feel for my kiddos.

It’s been a big change, but with the loss of my job, I’ve also added in other very positive things that I wasn’t able to fit in while working. We go to playgrounds, we play with friends, we go to a weekly Bible Study {BSF}, we hike at the park, we have coffee dates with family, I do a small group with church friends, etc. We stay very busy, but it’s a quality, focused busy, not just preoccupied busy, answering calls and emails while trying to keep little sister distracted. This new kind of busy makes my heart much happier.


I miss work. I miss lots of things about work. But I’m truly happy with the change. I realize I’m so blessed to even have the opportunity to choose not to work. Financially, it’ll be tight, but I’d rather scrimp, live on little for a few years, and even dip into our savings if we have to. I’m okay with being poor. It’ll be a sacrifice for us, but one we’re happy to make. As cliché as it sounds, even if we’re poor financially, because we’re living how we want to and how we think God wants us to, in my eyes, that means we are pretty rich! I may take on a part-time job later on, but for now, this is where we are – Eugene working his tail off at a new school, and me working my tail off at home with the kids. I’m learning so much about myself and humbly seeing many areas in which I need to grow. We are adapting. We are maturing. We are showing each other grace through the sometimes painful process of change. And we are most certainly blessed.


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