Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Time for a new outlook...

Bella just got glasses yesterday. Moments after the kids came home from school/therapy the girls had a short photoshoot. Wyndham wanted in on the action. She was all smiles for the camera and was hamming it up for the girls. She can be very animated at times- especially when she feeds off the silliness of the other kids.
These pictures make me realize something I need to remind myself of more and more these days. That is just how much my attitude and reactions to things affect how my kids and other people react around me. Life has been more than tough and 'draining' around here the past 6 months or more. It seems like I keep saying that, but it's the truth.
Teague is a very happy, content baby. But he takes really short naps during the day and still wakes at night. Being content can still make for a tired momma. =) Add to that our hyper-active Crew. When I say 'hyperactive' I seriously mean that. He rarely calms down from morning til night. He fights to keep up with the older siblings and often stays ahead of them, or literally climbs all over them- just because that's how he rolls. He doesn't have an off switch and can turn on the 'bad attitude switch' just by waking up in the morning. It's been extra challenging for both Chip and me- and then the other kids too- as none of our other kids have ever been so demanding and strong-willed. He has his mind made up about things and there's little we can do to snap him out of his dramatic behaviors no matter how many activities we come up with for him. We like to joke that he has "2 minutes of nice-ness in him each day so don't use it up too quickly and enjoy it while it lasts". But we're still trying to find ways to manage the day-to-day happenings around here and keep telling ourselves that this time in our lives won't last forever.
It only feels like it will.
The update on Wyndham came yesterday when she had an appointement with her orthopedic surgeon. She has been very tenative about bearing weight and trying to walk still. It's been over 5 months since her surgery and the truth about her recovery is that we're more than wishing she were further along in getting back to her 'old self'. We weren't ever told to expect that it would take this long to get her mobile again. After her doctor visit yesterday we were told it could take up to about a year for her to have her full strength and mobility back. So I guess she is well on her way. She will be fitted for another set of AFO's and hopefully this next pair will give her more confidence and ease with getting on her feet again. She's definitely got her personality back most days. So that is a good thing.
I'll admit it right here- since I always like to keep it honest and real around here- I'm the one that feels like a failure most of the time and I'm ready to give up most days before I even finish my first cup of coffee. I feel like no matter how hard I try to see the good in the bad, or to bring happiness out of difficulties, or to trust that God is doing something that we can't see, that it just doesn't seem like it matters. In my heart I know it does and I understand that there are times in our lives that fighting for something is the only way to make it happen. But making healthy meals and staying on top of laundry and repeatedly getting Crew out of trouble and staying on top of homework and offering stimulating activities for Wyndham in her limited ability state and so much more seems to be taking its toll on me. I feel like I'm no longer able (and growing less willing) to keep up with the demands. I feel like each day I fall short and in so doing I 'lose a part of me' and go into the next day with less confidence and abilities. Mentally, emotionally, physically and spiritually I feel like I am failing myself- and then failing everyone around me as a result.
There's still a part of me that says "don't throw in the towel quite yet". I have to say that Chip is a fighter too and he keeps saying we need to just hang in there and he definitely is the glue making our lives work much of the time. God seems awfully quiet even though I keep reading the Bible, have daily quiet times and devotions, and listen to praise and worship music. I'd love for my heart to feel the contentness that I've so often experienced in the past. I really truly want to find my way back to a positive, joyful me. I'm stumbling right now on my way and you know, I would love and appreciate any prayers that you guys have to offer up for me. All is not lost, but many of you know life can be tough for so many reasons.
I'm hanging on and thanking God when there are smiles to capture in pictures and praying that He will bring more peace and happiness to our hearts and home. The journey is still winding and twisting, but I want to believe that it is beautiful and worth all the struggles in the end. I think it's more than time for me to embrace a new outlook on life. I think I'm ready too.


My name is Amee said...

YOU & your family are in my thoughts & prayers during this very difficult in your life. I admire your honesty in writing exactly how you feel.
All I can say is keep praying and keep putting one front of another. Sometimes that is the only thing we can do!!!
I've been in trying times like you & lot of other people & I know that is how I got through it! Also with family & friends sending up prayers & being there for support.
I pray things will get better SOON.
Amee :)

Anonymous said...

Jody- Don't sell yourself short, baby! You are amazing!!'I will pray for you, especially at my rosary group today at 1 pm.

Even if this doesn't pertain to your post, I'm sharing this with you- it really spoke to me today..

'I was delivered from the bondage of hell. Mercy reigned. My bad track record was not going to be held against me. For years I had huddled off in a dark, cold corner with a morsel of moldy bread, and all along, a place had been laid for me at the banquet table.'
Heather King/ Shirt of Flame blog


Anonymous said...

Jody, I have never written before but have read your blog for years. Please know that I pray for you (almost) daily - often several times a day/night. I appreciate and SO admire you. You and Chip and been given much to bear and from what I see, you do a fabulous job and bring glory to God as you go.
This is a pathetic attempt at encouragement. I continue to bring you before the Lord for the peace, strength, and encouragement only He can give you.
God be with you!
Alice H.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for being so open. I am sitting here with tears streaming down my face because, while I do not have anywhere near the challenges you do, I, too, struggle to find the happiness and the strength to go on at times. It's a long story but I have to say that the fact that you share and you have allowed us to glimpse into your lives is something that you are doing for God and others and blesses us.

Satan wants nothing less than to destroy us, our families, our testimonies and you are hanging in there and not allowing him to do it. You are not giving up. Hold firm.

This, too, shall pass... Please make sure you are taking time for yourself to "regroup"...

You are loved.

Jan B said...

Oh, you have my prayers, Jody. You have SO much on your plate - I can't even imagine. I wish I had some life changing wisdom for your you. I don't, dang it all. All I know is that you're right smack dab in the thick of it. I'm certain that there WILL come an easier time, a more hopeful time, a more JOY-full time. It WILL come. In the meantime, I pray you feel the prayers that are going up for you and find encouragement in your quiet(er) times. He's there. That's the truth. :) ♥♥♥

Beck said...

Just want you to know I am praying.

chicks3 said...

I have read your blog for a while now and am in awe of how you have survived things that would cause many to come completely undone. I wonder if you have seen a counselor for any support? It could be that you are a little depressed and would benefit from short term counseling and/or meds. I admire you greatly!

Veronica said...


I think it is just a part of motherhood to loose a little more of yourself each find that your personality and character and vitality have been zapped by the kids and the demands of life....BUT...when, maybe now maybe later, someone says...your children have grown to be wonderful teens and will be glad and honoured that you have given up of yourself to provide the world and God with God-fearing children.

Oh....and chocolate helps.

Prayers and Hugs....Veronica

Anonymous said...

I have never commented before but your post reminded me of how I felt a few years ago. Seemed like everything was falling apart and I just couldn't do everything that was expected of me and just like you I felt like I was failing everyone! I don't know about your situation but I did end up being diagnosed with postpartum depression. My youngest was 1 year old when I was diagnosed and I was shocked because I had not experienced that with any of my other children. I got on medication and within 3 weeks I still had a lot of the crazy situations in my life but I just felt like I could get my head above water to be able to breath and deal with the stuff. I was on the meds for 1 1/2 yrs and got off and have been fine so it's not permanant. It's just sometimes our hormones have trouble getting balenced again after a baby. Don't mean to give a simple fix, it's not. You really do have a lot on your plate. I hope you don't feel like I'm saying "your crazy". Trust me I'm not crazy and this is what happened to me. Thank you for being so honest- more people need to speak up about the hard times in life. I know I felt so alone when I went through that tough time. Your words will help someone!

Keshet said...

Thinking of you, Jody:)

Chris Cross said...

Saying a prayer for one of the most spiritual women I have come to know (if only through your blog). You are amazing, but you just have alot on your plate right now. There will be a time, before you know it, that you will look back and wonder how you survived, but you will be so proud of the wonderful family that you and your husband have raised. It is worth the time and energy you are putting into it, and I am praying for your continued strength. It might be good for you to try and fit at least 15 to 20 minutes a day into your schedule with something that makes you happy--a hot shower, a short walk, reading an article or two in a magazine, or working on a papercraft project. It may help to reinvigorate you and help you find yourself in all that you are experiencing. We will all keep praying that you will continue to swim with your head above water.

Chelsea said...

I can only imagine how you feel- you are just spread so thin. I hear often from older women that this phase is just so draining, emotionally, physically, spiritually. I would imagine that is multiplied with more children and special needs. I know that God is with you in these circumstances (that He put you in!), even when you don't hear from Him. I am praying for joy and peace for you as you trudge through every day life.
You are such a blessing to all of us!

jenny said...

Oh, Jody, you are one awesome lady even though you can't see it yourself right now. God IS aware of all that y'all are going through and He is right there with you in it, even when you can't sense His presence. I'll be lifting you up in prayer and just encourage you to keep on doing the next thing. This is just a season in your life and it can't last forever. God bless you, sister.

Edith said...

Praying for you! Please know that you are a shining example for me in how to live daliy life. I would love to come over and help, but alas I am not even on the same continent...

Melissa said...


Rest assure... one day all these little kids will be teenagers and all under one roof. That is just GOD having fun with parents.

Hang in there...

Anonymous said...

Oh Jody...your honesty is so refreshing! Really!!! You are spread thin right now with all the kids being at different stages...having a daughter who needs your help and two babies!!! I agree with a couple of the gals here who say you might have post-partum depression. I'd ask your doctor about it. I'm "the older woman" here and have posted before on your posts. Back in the day..I had only 2 kids and a nearly absent husband (due to work and an attitude--which all changed) and can so relate to what you're sharing. I know "platitudes" of saying this is "just" a season doesn't mean much---it didn't for me. But in looking back it is/was!! I have to ask if you're getting any help from your family and friends? I know your extended family lives in another state...but I think it might be a benefit for you if you could have some help. Maybe from your church?? You need some rest and space from time to time. I will pray for you and your family! Just wanted to offer some thoughts here.

Marie said... and Chip are in my prayers everyday and I share your blog with friends and they are to praying for you. I wish I lived closer so I could help you out with Crew or whatever you need.Your words are so inspiring and keep me focused on the words of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Love and Blessings,

Anonymous said...

Get to your GYN or Family Practitioner ASAP and tell them your symptoms. It is SO unnecessary that you are feeling this way! Good luck and prayer are coming your way!!

Anonymous said...

Jodi, listen to the voice of truth.
Also, when's the last time you did something for you? even something small...bubble bath, etc.