The memory a smell can evoke

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The dollar store is one of my favorite stores. Everything for a dollar. Everything (actually there at items that are even less than a dollar!). There are websites and Facebook groups dedicated to all the things you can do with items from the Dollar Store. As a bonus, I can placate my toddlers with a snack or toy that doesn’t blow the budget, especially when they’re going to lose interest or break it anyway. And don’t get me started on the fact you can buy helium balloons for $1 each. I may just start to hyperventilate in my excitement. I can fill my entire house with helium balloons for the price of what i would pay for the latest new found gadget for my kids’ birthday and the balloons will last a whole lot longer, plus provide hours of entertainment when we turn the ceiling fan on and wait on the edge of our seat for the balloon to be swept into the rotating blades. The kids’ squeels of delight make it worth the brief moment my heart stops beating because it sounds like someone is shooting at my house.

A couple of weeks ago I was in this beloved store going through the checkout lane and then going for a massage two doors down. First, let me point out that I said “I was in the store”, as in just me, no kids. Second, let me point out that I had time to go for a massage afterwards (Thanks to a gift card from Mother’s Day). Pretty sure I also saw pigs flying.

As I checked out, on a whim, I grabbed a pack of mints to make sure I had fresh breath. Apparently impressing my masseuse was important to me. Apparently that’s also a problem they must deal with because they have bowls of mints for their customers in their lobby. I stepped outside, opened the pack of mints and as the smell wafted up to my nose, nostalgia hit me. It was like an old, familiar friend I hadn’t seen in years.

Grandma. Immediately I saw her, her house, her apartment, her buffet, her end table, and the small bowls that always, always, held her mints and her chapstick. Oh how I loved searching out those two items every time we went to her house, which, by the way, was almost every day since we lived in the same town. Needless to say, I ate a lot of mints and used a lot of chapstick as a kid.

What good, good memories of an even better person. Oh that I could see her again and share a mint (or two). I think she would be delighted that my kids are now hooked on those same mints and love getting my old chapstick tubes (old, as in all used up except a tiny bit smooshed down in there because their idea of using chapstick is to eat it). I think I’ll be buying these mints on our almost weekly trips to our beloved dollar store.

Reigning it in

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I just put my kids down for naps and got a huge lesson in motherhood.

I’ve heard lots of jokes about blondes. I’m not a blonde, except when the sun lightens my hair, but at times, I have found myself just as ditzy as those jokes make blondes out to be. I’ve also heard lots of comments about how red heads have fiery hot tempers. I’m not a red head either, but I definitely have a temper. My reaction to just about any situation is anger, annoyance or frustration, which in and of themselves isn’t so bad. They are a God given emotion after all. That argument only carries me so far though because my anger often comes out in not so good ways-yelling, slamming or throwing things, or growling/grunting (a very unattractive sound according to my husband); pretty much all the things my toddler’s second favorite show, Daniel Tiger, teaches you not to do. His option, take a deep breath and count to 4, is not as satisfying though.

And that is where the one thing I probably find the hardest in motherhood comes into play-reigning it in; reigning in my anger, my desire to yell at the child who won’t stop yelling themselves, my almost knee jerk reaction to push away the kid who just bit my shoulder, my satisfaction I would get from throwing the pot that won’t pop the popcorn across the kitchen, the guttural yell that wants to escape from my lips when the stupid sun shade won’t hang right after trying for 30 minutes while the kids are trying to climb on the chair to “help” and whining because they just want some lunch.

Seriously, I have an anger problem. Unfortunately for me, Jesus commands in Ephesians 4:26 “in your anger do not sin”. I read that verse and my lungs deflate in a big sigh. Oh how I fail at this every day. However, sometimes instead of blowing my gasket, I actually lay my anger down at Jesus’ feet and beg for his patience, his mercy, his grace, and his love. Not because I need it so much (although I do), but because I have a little person right in front of me who needs it, and in that moment of anger, I have nothing to give them but anger. So I really, really, really need Jesus to fill me with his character so I can pour it out to my children.

Today, it was my eldest, my 3 year old, my little girl who may whine for a few seconds prior to naps just because, well, because she’s 3, but who typically goes down without a hitch. She’s my easy one. Not today though. Today she threw an all out melt down, screaming, growling (hmmmm, I wonder where she got that?), toddler tantrum. I was in the other room putting my not-so easy sleeper down for his nap and as I listened to my firstborn scream her head off, my anger started to build higher and higher, deeper and deeper. I was ready to go in and give her a real reason to scream. However, in the 2 seconds it took me to slip out of one bedroom (after my not-so easy sleeper went down easily and stayed down despite his sister’s loud protests) and into her bedroom, I took a deep breath, said a quick prayer (“Jesus, help me”) and reigned it in.

Instead of scolding her, which is putting it nicely, I simply asked her what all the screaming was about. Turns out, all the little person wanted was a couple of band-aids for her knees, which had a couple of old boo-boos on them, but which apparently needed something to cover the almost healed battle wounds. I didn’t get it. I didn’t understand why those boo-boos needed band-aids today when it happened days ago and why they needed the band-aids RIGHT NOW, but in her little 3 year old mind, she understood it and it made perfect sense. Yes, she went about it the wrong way and the whole situation was made worse from her being tired, but what a simple solution; band-aids and a kiss from her mama. Wouldn’t you know that once we put those band-aids on (which took way too long because she wanted to do it herself) she was the sweetest little thing and promptly said “thank you” and “good night”.

I don’t condone her temper tantrum, but Jesus wouldn’t have condoned my tantrum either if I were to have reacted to her anger with  anger of my own. It’s a lesson that isn’t easy for me to follow, but one that I need to be reminded of again and again. Today was a good reminder.

Trophy Wife

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The term ‘trophy wife’ makes me want to roll my eyes and gag. You’ve seen them, the women who pride themselves in looking hot and their men who like to show them off. So not me and thankfully, so not my husband. I’m hoping to deter my daughter into wanting to be one by posting this bible verse on her side of the bedroom:

“Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.” Proverbs 31:30

Maybe I should also post it on my son’s side of the bedroom so it’ll deter him from wanting that kind of wife….hmmmmm

Anyway, the term ‘trophy wife’ came to me the other day, and I still have no idea why it popped into my mind, but it got me thinking about the root of WHY a woman would want to be one and why a man would want one. I get why women want to look good. Everywhere we look and much of what we read tells us that who we are is what we look like. I’d also say that even if you say you don’t believe this, how you spend you money tells me what you really believe, but that’s another argument for another post. As to why a man wants a trophy wife, well my guess is it makes them feel bigger, stronger, manlier, like the victor in some battle against every other man out there and they all stare and drool over the woman on his arm, jealous that she is not on their arm. He has something they want.

So then my mind took a left turn and decided there’s another kind of trophy wife. The kind who excels, not at what she looks like (though this isn’t to say she’s not attractive) but at what she does. Perhaps she is a doctor with her own practice; or a teacher who opens the minds of a classroom full of 5 year olds eager to discover the wide, wide world before them; maybe she is a dog trainer who can handle small or big, aggressive or submissive; she could be the woman who owns and runs her own flower shop or the wife who takes care of a barn and has no problem being around, in between or on top of animals over 6 times her weight. These are the wives who, when asked what they do, are “ooooh and ahhhhh’d over, are told by the listening person that they could never do that (how many of us could be kindergarten teachers? I mean, c’mon, seriously??) and are, in general, described by what they do (this may sound like I’m against the idea of a woman being known for what she does…I’m not. bear with me).

And it was then that my mind stopped, dead in it’s tracks. Well, I’m definitely not the first kind of trophy wife. I used to have a job, which I loved, but not anymore. So how am I described by my husband’s friends? How am I viewed in a room full of people, as I stand next to my man? I mean, what do I do? I’m a wife and a mom. I cook, I clean, I change diapers and wipe butts, I discipline and play, and run errands all day. Not exactly something people get excited about.

But after much thought, this is what I’ve decided I want to be known for:

  1. I am a wife who feeds her hungry husband. First, let me say, I’m not a great cook nor do I enjoy cooking every day, even simple meals. BUT, my husband works hard all day and is spent when he gets home. Not only does he physically need nourishment, but he enjoys it as well. Second, let me say I often view cooking as a burden. Let me fix one large dish that lasts for a few days and I’m good. But to have to fix something new about 5 times a week? Ugh, are you kidding? Fix it yourself or eat leftovers! So, while I struggle in this category, deep down I still would like to be known for it. Not every man has a meal to come home to. I want mine to.
  2. I am a wife who provides a home. My husband works to provide us with our house, it’s up to me to make this house into a home. Something personal, something functional, something full of memories and promises of a future, something that is welcoming to all.
  3. I am a wife who provides a sanctuary. Life is hard. It’s even harder when you’re out working in this blasted Florida heat and humidity. I want my man to WANT to come home. I want him to ENJOY being in our home. I want him to have a place where he can relax and rest, a place that restores his soul, that is a breath of fresh air. Of course this isn’t so easy as it sounds because it includes a variety of factors, such as: managing the kids’ toys, not letting laundry sit around (we don’t have a laundry room…it’s a closet = laundry sitting around means on the table or our beds or the desk or somewhere else it doesn’t belong), providing a place for everything and making sure it gets put there, teaching our kids to clean up after themselves, keeping a semi-clean house, exercising the dog so she’s not bouncing off the walls, exercising the kids so they’re not bouncing off the walls, etc., etc., etc. It doesn’t always happen, but I’d like to think I succeed more than I fail.
  4. I am a wife who mothers with a purpose. Many of my days seem to be just about survival. However, lately I have been convicted to devote more thought and time to mothering my kids, not just being their mom. Kids are like dry sponges, soaking up everything around them, whether it’s what they watch on TV, the behaviors of the kids they play with, what they hear on the radio, or what comes out of the mouths of people around them. I have the opportunity to make sure they are influenced by positive people and things as well as the choice to allow or not allow everybody else to influence them more than I do. I can allow their hearts to take on whatever shape the world molds it into, or I can gently guide them, teaching them who they were created to be and who their Creator is, what unconditional love is and who it comes from, the difference between absolute truth and objective truth and why it matters.
  5. I am a wife who is pleasant to be around. Oh that I may be a wife that builds my husband up, encouraging him and spurring him on in his dreams. That I may be a wife who is more interested in building our marriage than building my own interests; a wife who can disagree in opinion without starting a fight; a wife who can just shut up and listen; a wife who can reach out to break the silence even when I feel wronged; a wife who will choose to love my husband, every day, through every valley and up every mountain; a wife who finds a way to be his wife when I’ve used up all my energy being a mom all day.

This is who I am, or at least who I want to be. This is what I do. It isn’t rocket science or glamorous. But it is important to me, to my husband and to God. I may not care about what other people think of me, but I pray my husband finds joy in who I am and what I do for him, for us, for our family.

“Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.”

1 Peter 3:3-4

A Christmas Challenge

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Merry Christmas Eve! If you’re like many Americans today, you’re probably out buying last minute gifts, hurriedly wrapping the last of the gifts or planning your Christmas Day.
Tomorrow marks the middle holiday event that leads us closer to a new year.

Thanksgiving has come and gone and saw us stuffing ourselves with food and emptying our pockets on all the great sales. Christmas is a time to be with family, show our love by giving gifts and feel others’ love by receiving gifts. New Year’s is a day of celebration as we say out with the old and in with the new and better.

Some of us probably took some time to give to those less fortunate than us. Maybe you served at a soup kitchen thanksgiving morning before gorging in your own kitchen. Christmas is a wonderful time to give toys to kids who don’t have any. I mean, what better way to clear out the toy bins for all those Christmas presents we’re about to give and receive (kid and adult toys)? With the new year comes taxes so end of the year giving to charities provides a meaningful way to get rid of some money to receive a tax break.

I interrupt my slightly sarcastic words to point out a few things:
1. I know many people who really do have good hearts as they do all the above mentioned things
2. I realize there are other holidays during this time of year. Forgive me for not including them. I don’t celebrate them and thus have no background to include them in my holiday examples.
3. Personally, my family celebrates Christmas because it’s Jesus’ birthday. Take away the family, the gifts, the merriment and we still have reason to celebrate-our Lord and Savior came to earth so we would not have to spend eternity without him and we rejoice in that on Christmas Day.

So in a month and a half time (end of November through January 1) there is a ton of giving going on in our country. I won’t ask anyone to validate why they are giving or who they give to.

My challenge this Christmas season is to think about the remaining 10 1/2 months of the year. What would happen if once a quarter (that’s once every 3 months for those of you who, like me, go brain dead at times like this. It’s like my brain just stops ticking and all I can do is stare into space as I try to come with something, anything to say) each one of us gave to someone in need simply because….well, just to do a nice thing?

The homeless woman on the corner? Give her a couple of those blueberry muffins you just bought for breakfast. Maybe she’s homeless and hungry, maybe she’s just trying to pull one over on you, but I bet you’ll make her smile. Have a heart for kids? Find a local foster care family or organization and donate some of your kids’ books or toys-not because you’re getting new ones, but just because you can. Miss your grandparents? Make some Valentine cards and head on down to a nursing home to pass them out. Got those taxes back? Maybe you could take a small percentage, buy some groceries and drop it off at a food pantry. Find some coupons and weekly deals in diapers and donate a pack to the pregnancy center. Maybe even take one Saturday morning, load up the family and donate your time to a homeless shelter.

I don’t know how many people live in America and honestly, my kids are napping right now so I’m racing against time to actually start and finish this thing in one sitting, but suffice to say, it’s a lot. Imagine if even one quarter of us took this Christmas challenge and carried it out. Just one time of giving every 3 months. Imagine how many people we could take care of? How many people we could help? How many smiles we could deliver?

Side note-I did it. I’m done typing and the kids are still sleeping. It’s a Christmas miracle.

Me vs. the President

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You know what has been really frustrating about this election? The power that people have put on our future president. It probably happens with each election, but this is the first one I am really aware of it being such an issue.

Let me ask a question: How will the new president affect your life? I mean, really affect your personal life, your family, what you stand for and believe in? I’m not saying our president does not affect us in any way, shape or form, but who has more power over your day to day life, you or the President? Who has more power over what your kids are raised to believe, you or the President? Who has more power over the people you claim deserve more rights and more help, you or the President?

I am a woman and I have a daughter. We deserve to be looked at not as a physical body that is either pleasurable or not, fat or skinny, hot or ugly, but as human beings who have been created in God’s image, fearfully and wonderfully knit together in our mothers’ wombs and are beautiful JUST the way we are. And yet, what am I promoting when I watch TV shows that show just the opposite? What am I supporting when I sit through a movie that depicts men lusting over a woman’s body and women trying to seduce a man to lust over her body? Am I not being hypocritical in what I claim to believe and want to teach my kids vs. what I am allowing into my brain and supporting with my money (books, movie tickets, cable bills, high speed internet, products promoted by sexual means)?

When it comes to teaching my daughter that her identity is in Christ alone, that who she is is so much more than what she looks like, who is she going to learn it from, the President….or me? I have a whole heck of a lot more influence over my daughter than any person in the oval office.

Abortion is always a hot topic when it comes to elections. Pro-life vs. pro-choice. A woman’s rights vs. a baby’s rights. is it a person or a fetus? When does it become a person? Which candidate is going to support what I believe and do what I think should be done? My question to you (and myself) is: what are YOU doing to support what you claim to believe?  Because again, it goes back to who has more power, you and me, or the President?

As a pro-lifer, what am I doing to support my claim that a baby is a person at the moment of conception, that he/she is formed by God himself at that exact moment, that to abort a baby is murder? Do I simply post articles on facebook touting my truths? Do I yell them from the street corner? Or do I do a little homework, realize that many abortions are done because the mother sees no other way out of a very real, very scary situation in her life, and find a way to provide other resources for these women? Many cities have pregnancy centers that provide physical resources and teachings for these women. I’m talking diapers, wipes, baby clothes, car seats, cribs, how to care for yourself and the life inside you while pregnant and as well as how to care for a baby and be a mom (many times a single mom). These clinics provide resources by way of women coming along side of them, supporting them, help with health care for mom and baby, etc. Maybe instead of spending our time and energies on hating the “other side”, we rally together to support these pregnancy centers by way of money, donations of items, volunteer hours. Let’s take the power into our own hands and really make a difference, regardless of what the law books say, regardless of what any president says.

So I say, whatever your beliefs (even if they are different that mine), realize that YOU and I have more power to be the change that we so desperately want. YOU and I have more power to help our neighbor, the homeless vet, the abused woman. YOU and I have more power to teach our children the truth. No matter who is in the white house or even in the role as our city mayor, no one has more power to influence our life and our world than we do. NO ONE.



Because I said so!!

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This morning’s sermon at church was about Authority. Specifically the difference between Power and Authority and Jesus’ Authority (I’ll leave the explanation of Jesus’ Authority to Pastor Don, who taught this morning. You can view it here

What he taught on the differences between Power and Authority was astounding to me, specifically as a mom because, well, because I am a mom and it’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done and am doing in my life. So I pretty much relate everything to being a mom and hold tightly to the concepts that help me.

Power. It’s intoxicating. Everyone wants Power. To be in charge. To not just be listened to, but obeyed. To have people even a little bit afraid of us. Power often equals money, fame, success, the ability to do what we want when we want, to have people do what we want when we want, not necessarily because THEY want to, but because WE want them to. Power says “obey me or else” and makes people afraid of not obeying.

And yet.

And yet Jesus was none of those things. First of all, he came from nothing and according to the world, he became nothing. He was not rich, nor was he famous. He constantly had people plotting to kill him so I would argue that he wasn’t successful either, nor did he have everybody doing what he wanted. And when he did have people doing what he wanted (laying down their life to follow and glorify God), it was by their own choice, because THEY wanted to, and it didn’t result in fame, money or success. Many of them were killed for following Jesus.

And yet.

And yet they did. Why? Because he was One who had Authority (Matthew 7:28-29). Authority is who a person is. Not what they have. Not the position they are in. Not how loud they talk. Not what they can do to you if you don’t obey them. It is simply who they are. Authority simply says “obey me because I said so” and here’s the kicker, makes people WANT to obey.

Now, on to the parenting aspect.

As a mom, I hold a position of power, at least up to a limit depending on the age of my child. I can “force” them into obedience by making their life miserable (that may simply mean time out for a young child or taking a teenager’s car away) and starting out with young kids, that’s how we often teach them, with physical means of discipline (by physical I don’t just mean spanking, I mean the time outs, taking objects or privileges away, etc.). But the physical act of discipline isn’t always going to work simply because I can’t always be there with the eyes in the back of my head, seeing everything they do.

This is where I pray my position of power (as ‘Mom’) has turned into one of authority. Perhaps my disciplining my children when they disobey now, while they are young, will grow into them choosing to obey my rules not because they don’t want to be grounded or have their car keys taken away, but because they want to. Not because they’re afraid I’ll see them or find out and discipline them. Not because they’re afraid of my power, but because they, dare I say it, respect me as one in authority? They choose to obey my rules simply because…..I said so. Gasp! The reason all of us hated to hear from our parents when we were kids. And yet it’s so true.

Submitting to authority is something we all deal with in all phases of our lives. As kids, as college students, as grown ups in the real world. We submit to our parents, to our teachers, to the government, to our bosses, to our spouses. My job as a parent is to teach them how to function in life, not just at the ages of 2 and 11 months, but as adults. It’s my job to teach them how to respect authority, to submit to it, to obey it. On the flip side, it’s also my job to teach them how to function when THEY are the ones who are in authority. When they are the bosses, the teachers, the parents.

The best way to do this is leading by example. Making sure I’m the type of authority figure that deserves respect, deserves obedience, deserves to have them want to follow in my footsteps. It takes love, it takes humbleness, it takes servanthood. It takes Jesus, the perfect example.

They deserve my best



The same, and yet so different (William’s birth story)

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was 3:30 in the morning and I had just peed myself. Okay, not really, but that was my first thought and really the only one that made even remote sense to me. After all, I was just over 8 months pregnant and going to the bathroom a couple dozen times a day was the norm. So when I awoke at that sunshiny time of 3:30 am and got up to go to the bathroom even though I actually didn’t really feel like I had to go (after all, I was just awake an hour earlier and had emptied my bladder then) and then proceeded to feel and hear something dripping down my leg onto the floor, it only made sense that I had peed myself. I thought, “oh great, not only do I have to pee every 10 minutes, but now I can’t even control my bladder”. It never occurred to me that my water had just broken….and that I would be giving birth to my second child, my son, later that day….3 weeks and 1 day before his due date.

Fast forward to 10:00 am. Georgia and I waltzed into my 37 (minus a day) week check up and told the doctor what had happened. By this time I had read a bit online and figured out that no, I did not in fact pee my pants that morning but that my water had broken. However, since I was induced and had my water broken for me by my doctor in my first birthing experience, I didn’t really know what it felt like or what it meant. So naïve little me thought my doctor could just make things stop and I could finish my last 3 weeks of pregnancy in peace. Maybe have to go on bed rest, but no problem, right? Well my doctor listened to my story, checked me out and then looked at me and basically said, run, don’t walk to the hospital, you are in labor.

Our county hospital is right across the street from my doctor so pretty easy to get here. Except I had my toddler with me. Except I had just started to pack my hospital bag that morning (since I couldn’t sleep after “peeing myself” and thus continuing to pee myself a little bit every hour or so) and it was still at home. Except the hospital was closed. Wait, I’m sorry, what did the doctor just say? The hospital was closed? Yep, shut down due to air conditioning problems, so I would need to go to the next closest hospital, 30 minutes away. Awesome, perfect timing.

So fast forward again to 12:30pm after I had gone home (don’t tell my doctor I didn’t go straight to the hospital) and finished throwing random things in my bag, found a sweet, sweet, precious, I owe you one, dear friend to watch Georgia, called to tell my husband that my peeing myself actually meant I was in labor RIGHT NOW, let the dog out in the back yard one last time, and drove 30 minutes to the hospital praying my labor didn’t actually pick up (I still didn’t believe that I was in labor) and I had to give birth by myself on the side of a road. I couldn’t even find a parking spot when I got there and was too stubborn to take advantage of the valet service, so there I was carrying my bag and purse, waddling across a couple parking lots into the hospital, telling them I was in labor. Adventure in the making.

Side note: I then had to wait over 30 minutes in the Birthing Center waiting room while they got a room ready for me. Apparently I was not the only pregnant woman who had to be diverted from my county hospital to this one. They were booked solid.

Husband arrived, contractions picked up slightly, but not to the point where I thought anything was really happening, and suddenly it had been 12 hours since my water had broken and my labor was not progressing. I was bored out of my mind, frustrated as heck, and yet still slightly hopeful that I was going to give birth on my own, no induction and no epidural like last time. And then another 1 1/2 hours went by with no changes and I was over it. So over it. It was time. Doc, give me the Pitocin, get my labor going. Crank up the pain and let me curse the day my husband and I decided to stop practicing birth control. Just get this baby out of me, I’m ready to be done with it all. So there I was, right smack dab back in the same place I was during birth #1-receiving the dreaded Pitocin.

Lets just say it definitely got my contractions going. It brought the pain and my body responded by shaking uncontrollably. Deja vu-just like birth #1. Only this time, I was mentally prepared. During birth #1 I felt like a failure because I got induced against my deepest desires (but to the advice of my doctor and husband) and then chose to get an epidural after fighting the pain as long as I could. Lo and behold, the epidural actually wore off way before it was supposed to and I remember thinking the whole time “I got a freakin’ epidural for a reason and it’s not even working. What is wrong with this picture?” The room was black and spinning, I couldn’t breathe, and then I ended up tearing really bad, losing half of my blood, and passing out because my blood pressure plummeted. My husband says he remembers thinking that he had gained a daughter, but lost his wife all in a span of an hour.

Anyway, this time, during birth #2, I actively chose to be induced. Not my Plan A, but it was a plan I chose, and so I was okay with it. I also decided that I was going try to hold out and not get an epidural, but if I did, so be it. And so it was. As I was sitting on the edge of the bed, not able to get up and move around because of all the darn wires hooked to me, I remembered how looooooooong I had stayed in labor after starting the Pitocin during Birth #1 and the thought of being in that much pain hour after hour after unending hour once again didn’t exactly make me feel all warm and fuzzy all over. So, we called in the good stuff. I knew it increased my risk of needing a C-section, could affect how long it took for my baby to start breastfeeding, and a list of other complications, but I wanted it. Good Lord, I wanted it!

And so Birth #2 was the same as Birth #1 in that I was induced with Pitocin and got an epidural, and yet the resulting birth was different, so very different. For one, I was actually able to sleep after my epidural and considering at that point I had been awake and technically in labor for over 15 hours, coming off of 8 months of very little sleep, I was in love with the drugs for that fact alone. Two, after getting induced, I gave birth a mere 5 hours later (again, some of which I was able to sleep through) where as my first encounter with induction kept me in labor for another 12 hours before giving birth. One reason I didn’t actually give birth even sooner was that William’s cord was wrapped around his shoulder and neck, preventing him from dropping down on his own. Three, I didn’t tear. At all. Recovery post birth has been completely different thanks to not tearing. Case in point-I was actually riding my bike 1 week after giving birth the second time. One week post birth #1, I still couldn’t even sit on my donut without immense pain and discomfort.

It’s now been 2 weeks since William was born and while we did have to go back into the hospital 2 days after being discharged after birth because he had jaundice, we’ve now been home for a week and he is good to go. His big sister is in love with him and even the dog is coming around slowly but surely (actually, she doesn’t seem to care one iota that there’s another baby in the house).



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