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Mama, Stop Trying To Fill Up Everyone’s Cup & Look At Your Own — It’s Empty, Isn’t It?

I keep telling myself ‘today is the day.’ Today is the day that I’m going to get it together. I’m going to work out more, eat healthier. Practice patience. Serve up less frozen foods and use my Sundays to meal prep. I’m going to be on time. I’m going to schedule and plan and do all the things. I’m going to juggle 500 balls simultaneously and I will do it with style. And then, week after week. Month after month. I don’t. This weekend it all came to a head. Like, a slow boil that starts to rise and then […]

Spiritual Trust

This is something we can all experience during our walk on the spiritual path. Each path is different and sometimes people wake up dramatically at first, then taking time to understand and assimilate. More often people awaken gradually and assimilate along the way. No matter which way you experience, there comes a time when you have some basic understandings and have implemented them to varying degrees. This is when you can lean on the experiences of your past to help you have more faith and courage moving forward – this is spiritual trust. I also call this spiritual maturity because […]

Other’s Reaction To Your Growth

When we work on ourselves and begin to grow, it’s natural for dynamics to shift with those around us. From our perspective we’re learning to be happier, more loving and better versions of ourselves therefore it makes sense that everyone would embrace this and be happy for us. Sometimes that’s the case and things move along very well. Of course, if there were nothing to learn here, I wouldn’t be writing this blog, so I’ll lean into the other option…when people aren’t embracing our growth. In this case it’s best to remember a few things, one of which is if […]

We Made A Lot Of Mistakes When We Were Younger — Getting Married Wasn’t One Of Them.

We made a lot of mistakes when we were younger. Getting married wasn’t one of them. The average couple marries in their upper-20s. When we got engaged at 21, and married at 22, people all around us asked (some subtly, some not), “Are you sure?” That question, in particular, is funny to me. Yes, we were sure—at the time—but as it turns out, we didn’t know squat! For the most part, no one getting married does. It’s impossible to understand what it will be like to be married to someone else, to have your entire lives joined together, until you’ve […]

Twin Mama, You Were Meant For Two

“You’re going to have to hire a full-time nanny.” “Having two feels like four.” “I’m glad it’s you and not me!” “They’ll most likely end up in the NICU.” “Sleep as much as you can now. You won’t be sleeping after they’re born.” “That’ll be a HUGE adjustment for your daughter.” People had a lot of opinions when they found out I was pregnant with twins. While I’m all for keeping it real, what I wanted most when I was pregnant? Wasn’t reality, or someone else’s version of it. All the nopes. I wanted the fantasy. I didn’t want to […]

3 Steps to Stop and Smell the Roses

Like me, I’m sure you’re familiar with the saying, Stop and Smell the Roses, that’s actually attributed to pro golfing legend Walter Hagen in his 1956 book, The Walter Hagen Story. His actual verbiage is, “You’re only here for a short visit. Don’t hurry, don’t worry. And be sure to smell the flowers along the way. ” Few days pass for any of us when we’re not reminded either personally or through the news of just how short our visit (life) actually is for any of us. We instinctively know the importance of “making time” for ourselves to not only […]

Hey Parents-Stop Raising Mean Kids

I am sick and tired of people raising mean children. It’s amazing to me that parents today are not instilling kindness in their children. On top of that, they’re defending their abhorrent behavior. Today at our community pool, my daughter and son were playing with toy sharks. Two young boys around her age swam over and immediately started grabbing their sharks. Being the kind soul she is, my daughter told them they could play with them. The boys grabbed the sharks and went off on their own a few feet away to play. A few minutes later, I heard them […]

Why I’ll Never Make My Daughter Match Outfits With Me.

I scroll past pictures on Facebook and Instagram of moms and daughters wearing matching floral maxi dresses, bathing suits, or rompers. Maxi dresses are my jam, and gosh those pictures are adorable, so I’m always tempted to click on the posts to find links to purchase. But then I stop myself because while to the outside world I may have made a mini-me in the form of my daughter, I didn’t actually make a mini ME. My daughter may share my blonde hair and blue eyes. She may be tall with round cheeks and one dimple. But she is her […]

To My Strong-Willed Son: You Are My Greatest Teacher

Confession: Summer break has not quite turned out the way I’d envisioned. Don’t get me wrong, there have been so many amazing moments that I’m thankful for, but my visions of happily playing at the park and splashing around in the pool with my 3 year-old have ended up looking more like a duel scene from a western at times. The strong will in this child is only met by my own, and although I know his smarts and determination will serve him someday, it makes for some long days now, with nearly constant struggles over the tiniest of requests. […]

5 Unexpected Lessons I Learned While At The Ballpark.

“Every strike brings me closer to the next home run.” -Babe Ruth ‘Tis the season of home run derbies, batting averages, and a good ‘ole Red Sox-Yankee rivalry that divides friends and families throughout the Northeast.  Buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jacks, please, because like much of America, I freaking love a live baseball game. Nothing beats a warm day at the ballpark, where time stands still, sunflower seeds adorn the dirt in front of the dugouts, and anything, I mean anything is possible. Baseball is America’s sport and I am starting to understand why. My son plays double […]

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I Know What Causes Autism.

Last week I was surfing the internet and came across a headline proclaiming autism and circumcision are linked. I couldn’t help myself. I laughed out loud. In no certain order, I have read the following explanations for autism over the years: Autism is caused by mercury. Autism is caused by lead. Autism begins with poor maternal bonding. Certain pesticides may trigger autism. Plastics. Gluten aggravates autism spectrum disorder. People with autism should eat more strawberries. Too much automotive exhaust is a leading cause of autism. Chemicals found on non-stick cookware may trigger autism. The one about maternal bonding is sort of painful for me. The […]

I’m A Blind Mom Parenting 2 Blind Children — It’s Beautiful, Difficult & So Worth It.

I was born three months premature; I weighed all of two pounds and one ounce. My parents were told I wouldn’t live. I kept on living, though, and after a good amount of time in the NICU, came home. It didn’t take long for my parents to realize that I was blind. Now, considering how small I was and that NICU technology was still being fully developed, to only have blindness to deal with, was a pretty amazing gift. So I grew up the only blind member of my family. I learned to read braille, use a cane, and other […]

I Hope I Loved You Enough Today, My Baby.

As you lay sleeping in your bed, the weight of today lifts from my shoulders. The struggles of the day are quickly forgotten and I find myself looking at you in wonder. Memorizing your face and the dimples in your fingers. I want to rewind the day and tell you how well you did. How proud I am of you. I hope that I loved you enough today. As I drive you to school, I catch a glimpse of your sweet face staring back at me in the rearview. I replay the morning and find myself wondering. Did I love […]

Parents, Tell Your Children These Things Until They Believe You.

Parents, tell your children how much you love them, why you love them, and that you will never stop loving them any chance you get. Tell your children what parts of who they are make them special, what aspects of their character make them unique, and what sounds of their voice make them authentic. Tell your children that you notice how hard they try, that you see how resilient they can be, and that you are proud of how much effort they put into certain parts of life. Tell your children that there is no limit to your support, there […]

My Mom Had The Best Response When I Was Scared Of Losing My Rainbow Baby.

Sometimes you just need someone to be scared with you. And to recognize that certain situations generate more fear than hope. I’ve never been more scared than when I was pregnant with my rainbow baby. I knew that a positive pregnancy test didn’t equal a positive outcome. I knew that the fragile baby I was carrying might vanish before I could hold him in my arms. After all, I’d hoped to bring home two babies prior to that pregnancy, but they hadn’t survived. So, naturally, I was afraid to tell anyone that I was pregnant again. I was afraid speaking […]

My Life After Being On “The Bachelorette.”

Our stories are the same… you and I. We both met someone we loved, started a family, only to have love transform into something deeper. But it wasn’t magic. Not the miracle of birth. Or watching my son take his first breath. Not any one breath made the transformation… but all of them put together. Now, with greater depth and focus, I’ve moved from reflecting on love to being engaged in it daily. And this is where you and I differ. You see I did my self-reflection in quite a unique way, on quite a unique stage, oftentimes in quite […]

Dear Daughter, Don’t Let Anyone Label You.

You’re only 11 years old and yet I am beginning to see the bruises left by society’s labels for girls; from comparing yourself to others and deciding you don’t measure up, you aren’t as good. And it breaks my heart. But I am resolved that it doesn’t have to continue, that together we can demolish the world’s benchmark and bust out of that box you are trying to put yourself in. We can drown out the voices of others so you can hear just one voice, the only One that matters. Because I have my own scars from years, and […]

This Picture Of My Daughters At The Beach Has My Heart.

This picture. There is something about this picture of my daughters at the beach that tugs at my heart. It could be how small they seem against the vast, picturesque backdrop. It could be how independent they appear, out there in the water, far from me and the safety of shore. It could be the story behind the picture. That this vacation was the first time I felt comfortable letting my kids go so far from the shore without me. At one point, it was just me sitting on the sand watching my three kids out in the water, without overwhelming […]

The Invisible Hero — A Poem From A Soldier To His Child.

I wasn’t there to see your world debut I didn’t watch you take your very first breath I won’t be around to tickle your tiny feet Or give you kisses on your little head   I won’t be there to hear you say your first words Or teach you how to throw a ball You will never take your first steps towards me I won’t be there to catch you if you fall I won’t pack your lunch on your first day of school Or sing silly songs while on the way there I can’t tell you bedtime stories Or […]

I’m A Psychiatric Nurse & I’m So Glad You’re Here.

Today was the day. The day you felt the overwhelming urge to be done with this life. Suicide felt like the right decision. As a relief from pain, you have been desperately trying to escape. There was a flaw in your plan, though. Fear, family, friends, or fate caused a pause in the plan you were going to play out. You ended up in the hospital. But I’m so glad you’re here. I meet you when you are broken. I’m the nurse that is going to be caring for you in the first moments of a night you did not want […]

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My Life After Being On “The Bachelorette.”

Our stories are the same… you and I. We both met someone we loved, started a family, only to have love transform into something deeper. But it wasn’t magic. Not the miracle of birth. Or watching my son take his first breath. Not any one breath made the transformation… but all of them put together. Now, with greater depth and focus, I’ve moved from reflecting on love to being engaged in it daily. And this is where you and I differ. You see I did my self-reflection in quite a unique way, on quite a unique stage, oftentimes in quite […]

To My Daughter With Down Syndrome, You Are A World-Changer, An Eternal Supply Of Love.

Dear sweet Hannah Grace, My beautiful daughter, my life changer, my literal gift from God. I want you to know some things about yourself that others may not know. I want to tell you how you’ve impacted not only mine, but so many lives around this whole big world. I want to tell you about the special way your Creator knitted you together. I know you’re only 3 years old at the time I write this, but when you’re older you will understand just how amazing you really are. One day I may not be here to tell you how […]

The 5 Little Words My Son Said That Made Me Rethink My Self-Worth.

I threw a pile of dirty clothes over my shoulder as I searched through my son’s closet for his left tennis shoe. If you would just put your shoes in the right spot when you come inside. If you would just use your dirty clothes basket. If you would just listen. We had 30 minutes to get to the pediatrician’s office, which was a 20-minute drive away. And I hadn’t even gotten myself ready. I’ll get up earlier than usual. Then someone gets up with me and I’m sitting on the toilet with a toddler in my lap. I don’t […]

I Know What Causes Autism.

Last week I was surfing the internet and came across a headline proclaiming autism and circumcision are linked. I couldn’t help myself. I laughed out loud. In no certain order, I have read the following explanations for autism over the years: Autism is caused by mercury. Autism is caused by lead. Autism begins with poor maternal bonding. Certain pesticides may trigger autism. Plastics. Gluten aggravates autism spectrum disorder. People with autism should eat more strawberries. Too much automotive exhaust is a leading cause of autism. Chemicals found on non-stick cookware may trigger autism. The one about maternal bonding is sort of painful for me. The […]

To My Husband, I’m Sorry For A Lot.

I’m sorry, babe. I’m sorry that, more often than not, my hairy legs resemble a tiger’s back; that most days you see me in high-waisted, black leggings; that on the rare occasions when I do get dressed in “real clothes,” they are typically the same three maxi skirts on rotation; that I typically smell like sweat, poop, vomit, boogers, or just “yuck;” that I haven’t worn a real bra in about five years; that my hair is almost always in a messy ponytail atop my over-stressed, anxious head; that, most days, I am in my PJs and makeup-free by the […]

Palliative Nurse Shares The Number 1 Regret Of The Dying & Here’s How To Avoid It.

Palliative nurse Bronnie Ware has captured hundreds of regrets from terminally ill patients. They are the great common denominator — no matter race, color, creed — they’re the one thing we universally try to avoid with the time we’re given. The pursuit of such avoidance is often on our mind and always on the clock. Bronnie Ware, author of “The Top 5 Regrets of the Dying,” has seen that clock run out all too often. Working closely with patients who were in their waning days of life, Ware was gifted with insight beyond her imagination. The palliative nurse developed relationships with countless dying patients, hearing […]

I’m A Psychiatric Nurse & I’m So Glad You’re Here.

Today was the day. The day you felt the overwhelming urge to be done with this life. Suicide felt like the right decision. As a relief from pain, you have been desperately trying to escape. There was a flaw in your plan, though. Fear, family, friends, or fate caused a pause in the plan you were going to play out. You ended up in the hospital. But I’m so glad you’re here. I meet you when you are broken. I’m the nurse that is going to be caring for you in the first moments of a night you did not want […]

We Are Forgetting About Our Boys & That’s Not Okay.

I’m fearful that we forget about our boys. That may be a convicting statement to lead with, but it’s something that concerns me, and I bet it might worry you, too. Each day, I scroll my Facebook newsfeed and scour the internet and I find article after article about our daughters and how dire it is for us to raise them to be strong, self-sufficient, and capable. How crucial it is that they are encouraged to use their voice, own and tell their story, and never cower in the face of a man — one or many. As a mother […]

I Hope I Loved You Enough Today, My Baby.

As you lay sleeping in your bed, the weight of today lifts from my shoulders. The struggles of the day are quickly forgotten and I find myself looking at you in wonder. Memorizing your face and the dimples in your fingers. I want to rewind the day and tell you how well you did. How proud I am of you. I hope that I loved you enough today. As I drive you to school, I catch a glimpse of your sweet face staring back at me in the rearview. I replay the morning and find myself wondering. Did I love […]

The 7 Words My Husband Said To Me That Changed My Life Forever.

I used to care so much about what people thought of me. I always tried to be kind, I tried to not step on anyone’s toes. I minced words. I was selective in my responses. It bothered me when I found out someone didn’t like me. I agonized over the why. Was it something I said? Something I did? The anxiety of it all was eating me alive. Why did I care so much?! And then one day, my husband looked at me and said, “Who cares if someone doesn’t like you? I like you, and that’s all that matters! Forget everyone […]

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