Saturday, May 31, 2014

DAY 1009.... Unconditional Love, True or False

I remember sitting in a college class when my professor so boldly declared that there was no such thing as unconditional love. This was a religion class and a student had asked about God's unconditional love for his children. After this declaration, the class instantly became silent. What this man was saying was against everything we thought we knew! I mean growing up we had been taught that we could always turn to our Heavenly Father and that he would forgive us and love us no matter what! My professor went on to explain that there was a condition for God's love and that was that we were his children. For example, parents love their children because those are their kids. If they weren't their kids they wouldn't love them like they do. Does that make sense? It made sense to me but I still called BS. I wasn't even a parent at the time, but since becoming a parent I have learned and do believe in unconditional love.

I recently ran across this video online and I found it very interesting and moving and a perfect show of unconditional love.

Watching this as a parent I definitely put myself into the shoes of these parents, and what a trial! But tell me that these parents are not demonstrating crazy amounts of unconditional love. If they just loved their child I think that they would have not changed anything and continued living life as they thought easiest for them. But these parents are a perfect example of demonstrating unconditional love and a complete lack of selfishness. This will continue to be an trial for this family for probably their entire lives. I am thankful for their example to me as a parent and for their bravery in sharing their trial when I'm sure they are going to receive a lot of opposition in this matter.

 As a parent, there is absolutely nothing that I wouldn't do for Aniston. Sometimes she makes me so mad, and sometimes I just need a break from her for 5 minutes, but that doesn't mean I don't love her because when it comes down to it I would be there for her no matter what! Of course I am still young in parenthood and haven't had to face a lot of challenges with her. Her ability to make life changing decisions is still pretty low. But there are many choices in life that she could come across and she could choose what I would deem the wrong choice. As  a parent I have to decide how I am going to react. After watching this video and feeling inspired and having the desire to be the best parent that I can possibly be, I want to unconditionally support her in her decisions. I know that at times this may be the most difficult thing I have ever done, but I never want Aniston to feel as though I do not love her.

The way I look at it, I made A LOT of questionable decisions in my life as a teenager/young adult. Oh mercy! Just thinking of the decisions I made make my cringe! But it makes me thankful for parents who unconditionally love me. I know for a fact they didn't agree with my choices all the time, trust me my Dad made that very obvious, but they always told me and let me know how much they loved me. Sometimes I was scared of them, but I was always able to tell them the truth without worrying about whether or not they would love me, just whether or not they would be upset was the real question.

I think that unconditional love is a blessing that accompanies becoming a parent. The love you feel for your child is overwhelming and amazing. I believe that love is called unconditional love. I truly believe that my professor from college had a few loose screws and was incorrect in his assumptions regarding unconditional love. Unconditional love is rare and definitely doesn't apply to everyone who you love, but there is a such thing as unconditional love, no doubt in my mind! What do you think?

Friday, May 30, 2014

DAY 1008... 4 Out of 5

Let's just start off by saying that pregnant some should never attend graduation ceremonies. They will make you cry pretty much the entire time! When the national anthem plays, you will cry. When you see the hope and excitement on the graduates faces, you will cry. When a foreign exchange student bawls her way across the stage because she is so thankful for the opportunity to be in America and graduate in America, you will cry your face off! Graduation ceremonies are no place for pregnant women!!!

Last night I attended my brother's high school graduation. I don't even know where to start with this kid. He is amazing! Not only did he graduate with a 4.0, but he attended a different school in a different state every year of high school. I don't know about any of you, but I don't even have the emotional stability to even think about moving to a different high school every year and keeping my grades up with AP classes. I am the only one of my siblings so far out of the 4 who have graduated to be able to have been blessed enough to have stayed at the same high school for all 4 years. So thankful for that! Jake aka Lord Kenneth, also received the second highest amount of scholarships in his entire class. The girl who eat him out only best him out by a few hundred dollars. The kid makes me look bad, but it doesn't bother me because I am so stinking happy for him!

Lord Kenneth is a very unusual individual. In a good way of course! I mean he asked for a plot of land for his 18th birthday so that he could become a Lord. Who does that? Brilliant. Some people put value on high school based off your popularity, whether or not you played sports, how many signatures you got in your yearbook, silly things that don't matter in the future. Jake ignores those things. He does what he wants to do and doesn't let what other people think bother him. He is able to put aside what might be popular and cool for what will benefit him in the future and what will help him succeed later in life. I am 10 years older than him and I have problems accomplishing that! He is so incredible! Just an inspiration to my old self.

I was reminded about hope last night. I had forgotten how invincible and strong and hopefully and excited I felt when I graduated high school. It really felt as though nothing could go wrong. I felt so determined and like nothing could hold me back. I'm sad that that feeling has faded over the years. Instead of feeling as though I can take on the world, I feel as though I have a never ending to-do list that never ends. Instead of feeling hopeful and excited about my future I feel scared and anxious. After watching the hope of those graduates last night and feeling inspired by their love of life and I want to have that in my life. Everyone should have that in your life. I am not sitting stale, I am moving forward everyday in my life. I should be excited and hopefully about getting my master's degree in August and I should be over the moon about having baby number two in November. I have so much in the past 10 years that I have accomplished! My life has definitely not gone the way I had hoped it would when I was sitting in my cap and gown just after receiving my high school diploma, but it's turned out pretty darn awesome. I have a wonderful husband, a beautiful and smart daughter, a fantastic job, we live in a house not an apartment, I have a car, and I am about to have a master's degree.

I think that my biggest issue was that I allowed the world and TV to show me what life would be like after high school and that really was not the smartest decision. Life is tough, and when you graduate high school and are allowed to make your own decisions and pay your own bills, you can either make good choices or you can make bad ones. I didn't always make the best decisions, but my decisions got me to where I am today and I am happy. I am blessed.

I am thankful for the opportunity that I had to attend my brother's graduation. I'm so lucky to have my family live in the same city as me. Such a HUGE blessing. But I am also so thankful that Jake has set such a good example for Aniston when it comes to school and just in life in general.

Congrats to all the graduates this year! Never lose that hope and that excitement that you felt for life the moment you graduate. There is always something to be excited about, and even though life can get you down at times, life is good. And you will be amazing! Go and be amazing. And world... Watch out for Lord Kenneth Jacob Kinville. He is gonna rock this world like nothing we have ever seen before!

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Dear Aniston... Part 14

Dear Aniston,

You are less than 6 months away from being a big sister. I think I'm still in shock that you aren't going to be the baby anymore. I shouldn't be too surprised, you act far from being a baby. You know your ABC's,you can basically count to 10 you just skip 4 and 5 sometimes, you talk in full sentences, and you entertain yourself for hours. You grew up much faster than I wanted you too, but I feel blessed that you are as smart and polite as you are. Seriously, I know that I'm not the perfect Mom and for you to be the brilliant little person that you are amazes me every day!

I'm not sure how to prepare you best to be a big sister. You already love babies, but are you going to love a baby that comes to our home and doesn't leave? I know how challenging it can be to have siblings, and I definitely want you to have a good experience with siblings and I want you to love them. I'm not naive enough to think that there will be no fighting, no crafty tricks played on each other, where's the fun in that right, but I just want you have have the best relationship that you can with your siblings. I love that you get to see me spend time with my youngest brothers every week. You get to see how much I love them and how well they play with you! I hope that our relationship can help you in your relationship with your future siblings.

I'm scared Aniston. When I was pregnant and in labor with you I didn't know what to expect, so I just took it all in and did what needed to be done. I feel a little weaker this time around. I don't like it when you see me sick and I don't like it when I can't give you 100% of me. I'm nervous about balancing my time between you and the new baby. I never want you to feel like you aren't important or that you don't get any Mom time, and maybe when the time comes it will be much easier than I am thinking it will be, wouldn't that be great?

You are definitely my child. You may look like your Daddy, but the attitude and the sass remind even my own parents of a younger me. I think I am definitely in for a treat with you and your siblings and I really can't wait! You are such a sweet and sensitive little lady with such an ability to lead and command attention. I have no doubt that when you want to be a killer be sister you will be, but I know to prepare and brace myself for those moments when you need it to be all about you. I already have wonderful plans for your last summer as an only child. I want to make it such a fun summer for you! We have swimming lessons and your 2nd birthday  that I have been planning for like crazy! I want to spend as much time as I possibly can with you and even though I know you won't remember it I promise to take lots of pictures so that you can look back and pretend you remember those times we had together.

Thank you Aniston for teaching me to be a Mom. You have really made it possible for us to even have another baby. Because of you, we have hope that our family can be successful and great. Thank you for teaching me everything I need to know to add to our family.

I love you!

Love- Your Mom

Sunday, May 11, 2014

DAY 990... What Being a Mom Means To Me

Being a Mom means to me that:
  • Things don't always go as planned, but usually they end up going better.
  • Everything you do, benefits someone else usually more than yourself.
  • You may never get enough sleep again, but the things that you experience dead tired, are so worth it.
  • You can no longer purchase or wear expensive clothing.
  • You no longer have to plan your workouts because you will be chasing your child around, everyday and it's a pretty great workout.
  • You will have to empty your phone frequently because videos and photos of your child will consume your device.
  • Creativity becomes a necessity.
  • You develop a new talent/skill everyday.
  • Bathing and curling irons are a rare blessing.
  • You know the lyrics to every Disney channel theme songs.
  • You can handle no less than 4 loads of laundry a day. Cleaned, folded, and put away.
  • Your freezer will always be stocked with chicken nuggets and go-gurts.
  • A child's laughter becomes the cure for absolutely anything!
  • Everyday is a blessing.
  • You will do things you never knew you were capable of.
  • You become a teacher.
  • You can do ANYTHING, even the things you think are impossible!
  • You will ALWAYS be loved!
  • You become a super hero.
Being a mom to me, means becoming a super hero. I had no idea what a difficult, yet rewarding job being a mom was when I was growing up. In fact, there were many times where I did not give my mom the credit or respect that she deserved. That makes me sad, because she was such an amazing mom and I didn't even realize it. I am blessed to now know and recognize her greatness and the blessing that she is is in my life, and I'm lucky that she lives 10 minutes away from me so that I can make up for my reckless childhood.

At work this week, the Kindergarten classes were taking these adorable pictures for their Mom's and I couldn't help but to join in. It's important that I express my love to my mom this week, not only because of Mother's Day, but also because she turned 50 this week!!!!

I had never thought of myself as a selfish person, but around the 8th month of my pregnancy with Aniston I realized that I was completely selfish! I wanted my sleep, I wanted to eat whatever I wanted to eat without getting sick or having to share it, I wanted my crazy amounts of energy back. There was so much that I wanted to do, but I couldn't. The thing about this type of selfishness, is that even though I desperately wanted to sleep in later than 6:15 this morning, which is when Aniston woke up, I'm okay getting up, because I know that I'm getting up with her. I know that when I get up and go into her room that she will smile at me like she hasn't seen me in days. I know that she will be so happy to see me that it will instantly take away any hard feelings that I may have. Being a Mom means that I give up what I want or what I think I may need, for the needs and wants of someone who means more to me than anything. Being a Mom has changed my life and definitely for the better!

I am so thankful for the blessing and the opportunity that I have to be a Mom. It's not something I can ever take for granted because there are so many people who do not have this blessing. My opinion about Mother's Day includes all women. Mothers, not mothers, single, married, divorced, widowed, dog mommies, cat mommies, teachers, etc. I could go on and on. I have one friend who is a phenomenal kindergarten teacher. Just amazing. She is so sweet, understanding, loving, smart, caring, oh the list goes on and on. I consider her such a mother even though she does not have her own children yet. She mothers her kindergartners every single day. Numerous parents trust her daily with their children, to teach them and build them up to be great people. That's HUGE! That takes a lot of trust, and you know she's good because she gets a crazy amount of requests every year! Her children are going to be the most blessed children ever! She is going to blow motherhood out of the water, she is so prepared and she will be amazing. No woman should ever feel as though they feel excluded or left out from Mother's Day. Being a woman, in itself is hard enough it should be celebrated! So Happy Mother's Day to every woman out there mother or not! You all deserve to be celebrated today!

Sunday, May 4, 2014

DAY 983... Expecting the Unexpected Take 2

I didn't die... Although some days it feels like death. I'm alive just pregnant.

SURPRISE! First let me say that we are incredibly excited and feel so blessed! We have been overwhelmed by the support and encouragement of our friends and family as we have announced the pregnancy. So my body hates to be pregnant. I understand and I am so thankful that I am able to successfully carry a child and to experience pregnancy, but it just does not agree with me. I haven't been as sick as I was with Aniston, but I didn't get really sick with her until the 2nd trimester. I am hungry this time around, but I can never finish anything because I start feeling so sick. I am loving white cheddar cheez-its and watermelon, and not so much my beloved Taco Bell. Such a bummer! Especially since we just moved (crazy story) and we only live a block away from TB. Of course since the pregnancy is different so far than the last, Spencer assumes that means it's a boy. Wouldn't that be fun? Unfortunately, we have never been able to agree on boys names, so this child may be nameless for their first 24 hours like Ani was. We aren't the couple who announces the name of our child the same day as we find out the sex. We like to look at our child and meet them, and then name them. Naming is a big deal, and we just don't want to get it wrong. I think we did pretty good with our Aniston Kate.

I feel so blessed and it makes me so incredibly happy to see how excited Aniston is! She carries the ultrasound pictures around with her and kisses it and just looks at it and says, "My baby. So tiny and so cute." She has informed us that she doesn't want to share a bedroom with the baby, but she gives my belly kisses everyday and says, "I love you baby". It just melts my heart. The baby isn't due until November so Ani will almost be 2 1/2 by then and I think it's the perfect age for her to become a big sister.

I have other concerns, that I hope are somewhat normal concerns. I am not worried that I won't love the baby, but I'm worried about loving two. How does that happen? How is it equal? I've been told it's natural and that I don't need to worry about it, but I just want my children to have the best life's and to know that they are so loved.

Ani was definitely unexpected. This baby was also unexpected. We tried to get pregnant for a while, but it just didn't happen. I am the kind of person who stresses out frequently and easily. I think that stress prevented us from being able to get pregnant. I also am a heavy believer that everything happens for a reason and that includes timing. We consider this baby unexpected because we were not trying to have a baby when we got pregnant, but this baby is definitely wanted and already so loved! The best part about timing is I will graduate in August with my masters, so that will be done and not a stress, and that baby is due close to holidays so I will have breaks from work. Perfect timing.

I promise I will not bombard you with belly pictures, but I have had so many people asking for one already, so here's bump picture number one.

Thank you all for your support and your well wishes and your concerns for my health. I hope to be updating more frequently and to get you up to speed on all these crazy things that have happened in our lives. Trust me, it's been a roller coaster of a first trimester and it has nothing to with this baby!