I had the pleasure in receiving a very special message today from a dear friend of mine. As I took the time to watch this short yet meaningful video I wonder how many other parents, not just moms but dads too are doubtful that they are the best parent they can be for their children.

As I watched this video it brought tears to my eyes. I was able to connect with these mothers comments of “needing patience,…”. I however hope deep down inside that I truly have and can continue to be that parent to them that they feel is their “hero”.

I ask every parent to take just a second and watch. Enjoy! Realize you do make a difference. You do mean something. You are loved…. – priceless, kids say what they really feel about mom


In my shoes

When we moved to Milwaukee it was a complete change for J and I. We had been married just shy of a year. He had just graduated law school from John Marshall. We had lived in Chicago for a few years and loved it. I was given a great opportunity to work for Kohl’s Department Stores corporate headquarters in their gift card marketing department. It was a dream job! J and I had agreed that if the perfect job came about we would go where we needed to be. When we finally made the decision to take the job and make the move we had no idea that there would be so many changes.

Both J and I had talked many times about having a family and why not! We loved kids and loved the thought of having our own. After we got settled in in Milwaukee we decided, after a few months, to see what would happen. Let God decide if the time was right. Well sure enough it was! I was probably in my current job with Kohl’s for about 5 months when we found out we were expecting. I was shocked at first. I really didn’t expect it to happen so quickly. We were just meeting people, other couples, others who lived in the same complex as ours and getting to really know Milwaukee and what it had to offer us.

Well 9 months came and went and we were blessed with our first born – JD. Wow was having a child completely different. The late nights up and nights with no sleep…..yet we tried to make it work as well as we both could living in Milwaukee and our families both 4-5 hours away. After about 6 months we decided we needed to be closer to our families, our support to help us make our new family better. Its not that J and I couldn’t do it all, we could however it was hard for us and very trying with no one really to call in need of some help at times.

We quickly realized that life changes. Having a family changes things. Your free time to lay on the couch on a lazy Sunday to watch football is no longer available when you have a little one to take care of that depends on you. Going out on a Saturday night and not doing much the next day, probably isn’t the best mix when you have a child who needs you. We slowly felt a pull away from our friends, not because we were no longer cool to hang out with but that we had different priorities, different needs to make sure were met. Have you felt this too?

Now speed forward tshoeso now – we have been back in Springfield for at least 5 years now. As much as we miss the city of Chicago and the Milwaukee offerings we know being here is best for our family. J has been able to really develop his career and I in the marketing world. We are both busy with our jobs, but more importantly busy with our boys. Soccer, basketball, parents club, grant committee, etc. We get to see our families at least once a week if not more.

Friends every now and then depending on everyone’s schedules. A fully scheduled, heck-it and rewarding life.

I think many readers might be able to relate to my story of how life changes once children enter the picture. I think something I wish those who did not have children could walk “in my shoes” at least once. Life as a parent is busy, demanding, constantly going and rewarding all at the same time. I love my time with my children! They are my world and I wouldn’t change a thing. God gave this life to me and everything in it. I enjoy it all! The good and the bad….and everything in the middle.

My advice to those who do not have children – please try to think about your friends with children. Be “in their shoes” every now and then. Realize that sometimes it take a few extra calls, a few extra texts, emails, whatever it is to stay connected. You’re not bothering your friends with kids. If anything you are giving them a moment of adult time that might actually be needed. And realize that if you ask us to do something once be sure to follow up with them before deciding they aren’t interested, cant go, etc. You never know when in reality they may be waiting for you……

school days…

This fall J started kindergarten. As exciting as it is, it also means my baby boy is growing up. This year J has the delight to be in a class with 20 other children at one of the catholic schools in Springfield. We choose this school, not just because the class sizes are small but also that they excel in their academics, we feel the students there get a better hands-on approach to learning, and help us put God’s word into his day every day. J is a very smart boy. He excels in areas of creativity and is very intrigued to know more each day. Certain topics such as dinosaurs, fossils, writing words/letter, etc are his special these days!

My husband, family and I are entertained with the questions he has to ask us sometimes – mostly at times when our coffee has yet to kick in. Leaving you in a short state of shock to and hopeful that the answer that is about to come out of your mouth is in deed the answer you would want to say, after about a cup and a half. He asks questions on God, Jesus, death, marriage, how did the dinosaurs get here, why did they die, etc. All interesting questions a bright mind would think. He is always thinking, which when he is older and in high school might make it very interesting for us!

medium_6282476027I know J is not always the most perfect child; no child is. They all have their times when they just aren’t feeling right, something upsets them, they don’t agree, their tired etc. I will say though, in our house we try to do what we can to be open to others, to their thinking and upbringing. We try to stay open minded. My husband and I come from two different family dynamics…..which has been great. It has helped us to see the world as we live in with eyes open. We try to embrace the Peace Builder pledge that his school uses at home as he and his classmate do at school.

The other morning J asked me why one of his school mates would tell him he would be the only one not invited to be at his sleepover. Puzzled I first didn’t respond. I’m not quite sure I would probably allow him in the first place to go to a sleep over only being in kindergarten and all, but then I responded – “Are you sure that is what he said?”. J didn’t say much more after that. He went back to eating his breakfast. It got me thinking…..Is there something going on at school I should know about? Why would this little boy say such a thing. Did they disagree at school sometime? Are they just not nice to each other? This isn’t the first time something like this has happened. What is amazing is even in pre-school I saw things like this happening and not only to J. It starts so young.

I want to be sure that J knows that it was ok that he and his friends sometimes don’t agree or get along. There might be times where he might not be included in something and he shouldn’t be upset. Sometimes these things happen. Its part of growing up. I know young children often react before really understanding what might have happened and I truly think and hope that what had happened at school was truly a misunderstanding. What makes it hard for me as J’s mom is knowing that deep down he does care about all of his friends and really would like to be included as much as possible. Friends will come and friends will go but hopefully he will be strong in his faith and those that God wants to be in his life will stick with him as they grow older together.


constant juggling

I read a post the other day – “Daughters Diary : My Mom gets Mad at Me” – and thought I would share it too. After I read the entire post it got me thinking – wow, do I do this with my two little ones? Do I continue to rush around day in and day out and forget to take time for them, with them enjoying the little things?

I know in the world we live in today that moms and dads are pushed to do so much. I am a big multi-tasker and I tend to give myself a good amount of things to check off on my check list however, in reality, may only get to a few of the items on the list. There are literally days where I feel I haven’t accomplished anything because something comes up or we need to run to this place or that place. Even on days when the children are not feeling well, which leads to either myself or my husband getting sick… sometimes is an endless cycle we weave. Do you ever wonder, if we all weren’t so “techy” with our cell phones, email, social media, etc on us 24/7 that we might actually have some breathing room. Some time to actually sit down and enjoy a family meal, to read a book, to enjoy the nature in our backyard…

I want to quote Brigid – “Because when you’re exhausted, when, as one reader wrote me, you’re “one sick kid away from a nervous breakdown,” it’s close to impossible to do the kind of meaningful work you’d like to do, or to be the kind of loving parent who never loses their cool that you’d like to be, much less get the laundry done or take a few moments of downtime. It’s close to impossible, sometimes, to even feel like you’re inhabiting your life, rather than holding onto it for dear life with your fingernails as it flies past.”

Wow! Been there, done that….

For me, my world has changed drastically with both of the boys. They both have different needs, wants and likes. Everything was pretty easy when we had J, however when we added C things changed. We had two that needed our attention, support and love. I hate a messy house. I hate having dishes pile up, yard work to do, etc. But to be honest, I hate it more that one of my kids has to wait to have me read to them, color with them, or even snuggle with them. The house work can wait. Work can wait. My kids will only be young once and why would I want to miss out on it just to have a clean house for a day. 🙂

What I hope you get from reading Brigid’s blog and my relating to her, is that you are not along. I think everyone gets it. You have to recognize it to change it. You have one life to live… should live it to your fullest!

Have a most wonderful Wednesday!

it happens for a reason

We’ve all heard it before, “it happened for a reason” or “everything happens for a reason”, but really how many individuals actually believe this phrase. If you were to ask me 10-15 years ago I would say at that time, no its crap, however now that I am 33 years old and have gone through some difficult times that I never thought I would, I truly do believe that things do happen for a reason.

As I was working the other day, I met a very interesting and intelligent man this past week at the downtown farmers market and had a very nice conversation. This individual was a retiree who in 2007 had a significant medical difficultly that led him and his providers to believe he would never be able to move around again; be a paraplegic from his waste down for the rehopest of his life. He being a very God fearing man, said he didn’t believe what they said. He knew he was being challenged by God. He went through physical therapy, went through additional obstacle but indeed started to move around, even if it was mostly in a motorized cart, around. He was told he would never be able to do this. There was no hope. However – He took their disbelief and his faith and did what they told him he couldn’t. He is now living proof that his faith in God and taking the challenges God put before him can in deed move hills, and hopefully mountains. Sometimes it might be small baby steps…..but in time things can get better.

As I listen intently to his story, it made we realize I have too been in a similar situation. In 2012 my husband started experiencing heart rhythm issues. May 2012 was the first instance. I was 6 months pregnant with our second son and helping my older son upstairs when J came into the house asking for me to come downstairs. I knew something wasn’t right. J had mentioned he had just started to get ready to power-wash the fence when he went to stand back up from connecting the hose to the washer when he started to feel light headed and his heart started to race. We were lucky he made it back into the house. My husband was experiencing WPW – Wolff–Parkinson–White syndrome, however neither of us knew what to do. We hurried and got our son and ourselves in to our car and took off to the ER. The whole time not knowing exactly what was happening but very concerned and frightened. When we finally got to the ER and were finally taken back to a bay, J’s heart rate was over 300 beats per minute.

Everything was happening so fast. Doctors, nurses, ER staff rushed in and out of our room. We knew it was serious when they started to bring in everyone at once. They were about to use the paddles on him and shock him, but as they started to lay him down, his heart converted itself. Thank God! J stayed in the hospital and had a cardiac ablation to correct the WPW. It was a long recovery, not so much physically but more mentally for J and our family. After this experience, I know both J and I knew each day is a blessing. I truly had thought I was going to lose my husband, my best friend. I was scared and afraid. I was worried for our family; mostly for our sons, one who loves his father with all his heart and one that I was afraid would not even be able to meet his father. It made me realize not to take things for granted. You never know when in a second things could change in an instant and you may never be able to go back. We have had a few additional experiences with J’s heart and the abnormal fast heart beating (arrhythmias) and we are still looking and hoping to find the reason, the cause of why this continues to happen.

You’re probably wondering now why did she talk about this guy from the market and how does it relate to her story about her husband?? Well, to be frank, I wish they could meet. See after the first instance, J seemed to have lost hope. He was frustrated with God. Didn’t understand why he would have this happen to him. He was very emotional, and really who wouldn’t be. During recover from the ablation he was unable to hold or pick up JD and that really hurt both of them. JD was afraid he was going to hurt his daddy and was scared since he was in the hospital. He pulled away from him until he was able to realize that “daddy is going to be alright”. It hurt to hear him become frustrated with God for having this happen to him. Why me, why my family…..of all things his heart is not replaceable or something you can live without. He hates the “It happens for a reason” phrase, however I truly feel God only gives us what he knows we can handle and knows we can overcome. We are given truly only what he has a plan for us. Even in times when we have no idea why he does things, there is a reason. The hard part is that sometimes what cards we are dealt are really not the cards we want, for instance J’s heart issues. I’m hopeful that we together as a family will find the reason this happens, find someone who can help fix it and help us continue to live God’s way.

Have a blessed Sunday and a wonderful start of your week!

Taking the Plunge…..

So, I’ve decided to take the plunge….not in a bad way but in a way to possibly help others….

Many know that I tend to like to be helpful in sharing my opinions and views with others.  I tend to have my own thoughts as most people would and should on on how to be a parent, a working mom, friend, wife, etc.  I know there are many that wear the multiple hats as I do in my everyday life.  So after waiting many months, I have decided to take the plunge and start my own blog….a mommy blog if you will, called Growing up Fyans!  I hope you will enjoy my insights as a mother as I journey through motherhood of two adorable caring boys and our dance together through everyday life.

Never regret a day in your life.  Good days give you happiness and bad days give you experience.  Both are essential in life.  All are God’s Blessings.  Have a great day!