Normally, I post all of the fun and exciting things that take place on our Homeschool journey. Let me just say, these things are just the highlight reel! The laundry isn’t always done. The house isn’t always clean. My sophisticated meal plans, chore charts, and homeschool lesson plans are not always executed the way I envisioned. Most of all, I do not always feel that what I am doing is enough. The new reality of my son’s feeding tube is setting in.
Tonight, as I plugged Miles in for his nightly 10 hour feeding, I began to weep thinking about how I felt like I failed him. After having successfully breastfed 6 other children it is a struggle to accept that his diagnosis of “failure to thrive” is not my fault. Staring at the feeding tube and the bag of milk supplying him with the needed nutrients, I ask God where did I go wrong this time?
I hear the enemy and many well meaning “friends” saying this happened because of my advanced maternal age or because I am overweight. My relative even told me that I was now fired from breastfeeding my son, despite the doctors saying this has nothing to do with me.
The enemy whispers once again, “Christel, you are not good enough.”
After 20 minutes of being mentally and spiritually beaten down, the Holy Spirit pricked my heart and reminded me how much God loves me and sees me as good enough. I was reminded of the verses 2 Corinthians 3:5 Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God and Isaiah 43:4 Others were given in exchange for you. I traded their lives for yours because you are precious to me. You are honored, and I love you.
Such a powerful reminder that this journey is not about what Christel is able to do. This journey is about what God does through me. It is not about how my little one gets his nutrients. This is about the love, care, and compassion I give him as I nurture and raise him.
So, tonight, I will plug up my little guy and kiss him goodnight. Then, I will wake up when the machine beeps to be changed and kiss him again just to remind him how much I love him and to remind myself how much God loves me.
What do you do when you feel you aren’t enough? Share your thoughts.
Learn more about how I was Forced Into Self Care after this journey began.
Hey Mom! It’s Time for a Time Out!
Most moms would agree that they don’t have time for self care because they are too busy caring for everyone else. Almost six months ago, the day after Thanksgiving, I found myself rushed to the hospital believing I was having a stroke. I remember the urgency of the nurses and technicians as they were examining me. I was experiencing slurred speech, left sided numbness, blurry vision, and an excruciating headache. While laying on a stretcher in the emergency room, the only thoughts running through my mind were:
“The kitchen sink has a pile of dishes!”
“The baby needs a bath.”
“There is no way I can stay here. The kids have a party to go to next week.”
As my blood pressure continue to climb well past the mid 200’s and I could not even speak or see clearly, my mind was still consumed with all of the things I needed to accomplish at home.
I don’t know about you, but for the most part, each day, my mind is filled with all of the things that I need to accomplish for those I love. School, finances, extra curricular activities, church, and so much more are always at the forefront of the day. From the moment I open my eyes to the time my head hits the pillow at night, my loved ones take the front seat.
Time for a Self Care Time Out
After what seemed like an eternity and an MRI, the doctors informed me that I did not have a stroke, but was experiencing the symptoms of having extremely high blood pressure. I was also told that because of my uncontrolled blood pressure over time, I now had damage to my heart and was at risk for heart failure. If I did not make major life changes, I would not be alive to see my children grow up. My tears stung my face as the doctor explained my next steps. First and most importantly, it was necessary to take TIME OUT for me! This mommy needed to become a task and priority on her own task list.
In order to accomplish this Time Out, I knew my self care plan could not feel like a chore and it needed to be flexible. After much thought, The Self Care Checklist was created. Focusing on only 4 areas of things I enjoyed the most, I was able to develop a gentle reminder to take care of myself.
Time Out #1 Eat Something Tasty
I come from a family where food is not just for nourishment. It is an experience! Most of the people in my family are chefs, so food is always delicious and plentiful. After several years of some really tough points in my life, I became an emotional eater. Along the way, I lost sight that I needed to be more mindful about what I was consuming as well as how much I was consuming. Thinking about what I was putting into my body became my number one on The Self Care Checklist because I knew that what I ate was going to have a huge impact on how I felt and my long term health. I started by making a list of the the Top 6 Foods I love to eat. Then, I found a healthy alternative and put those on my list. Each of the things on my list are foods I enjoy eating, but are also healthy. So, whatever you enjoy eating, find a healthy alternative and write it down.
Time Out #2 Read a Book
Hmm.. let me guess. The last book you read had brightly colored pictures, super heroes, animals, or famous cartoon characters. If that sounds about right, this Time Out is for you! Researchers at the National Library of New Zealand say that reading for pleasure “improves literacy, social skills, health and learning outcomes.” Who in the world has TIME to read a book for pleasure? Well, certainly before being Forced Into Self Care , reading for pleasure was the furthest thing from my mind. There was just too much to be done in the course of day. Then it hit me, reading for pleasure was the perfect way to momentarily forget and unwind, even if just for fifteen minutes a day. Don’t forget about the awesomeness of e-books and audio books. There are tons of ways to take this much needed Time Out.
Time Out #3 Get Yourself Something
How often do you walk into a store set on purchasing something for yourself and then buying something for the kids instead? Have you ever been given a gift card for a present and spent the money on someone other than you? I am guilty of this on a regular basis. My family knows that if they want me to buy something for myself, they have to practically take me to the store and buy it right then and there. Sure, there are tons of things I would love to buy for myself. I just end up thinking of all of the things the kids can use instead. This Time Out gives you permission to write down at least six things you really want. Putting those items on a list makes them tangible. It allows you to see that, although the kids have things they want and need, so do you!
Time Out #4 Enjoy Life
Two weeks ago, a few friends and I decided to go out for a bite to eat without our husbands and children. We chatted, caught up on all of the crazy things going on in our lives, and laughed at some of the old times we used to have. We had such a great time, we decided that we would make this a frequent activity. For many moms, finding time to go out seems like a daunting task. The planning and preparation involved feels like too much of a hassle. I have found myself cancelling an outing just because I didn’t want to go through the process of setting things up at home. After being Forced Into Self Care, I decided it was time to start enjoying life! I wrote of a list of a few activities and things I enjoy doing and made a goal to accomplish one each month. Taking time to enjoy life and do things you love will give you a renewed energy you forgot you had. Do you love walks in the park, having coffee with friends, getting a manicure? Sit back, call a friend, and make some plans.
Taking Time Out for yourself and practicing self care isn’t as hard as you think. All you need is a pen and The Self Care Checklist. Moms spend so much time pouring into their families that they often become the last person on their to do list. You are loved and you are important. Make yourself a priority this Mother’s Day!
Did you enjoy these Self Care Time Outs? Pin the Image below and share it on Facebook!
New Year! New Vision!
It’s the first day of a new year! Are you looking for a new vision for your life?
Have you made a resolution?
Decided that this year is the year?
I remember the new year’s eve after my 40th birthday. I resolved to finally make this the year that I lost weight. I was 6 months pregnant with my last child and I knew that he would be my last. I made a plan to begin a new way of eating, exercising, and cooking, all in an effort to lose 40 pounds by my 41st birthday. I had plans for our home, our school, and our business.
Well folks! Here I am. One year later and I have not lost anything. I am only 10 pounds lighter than I was after delivering my son. I started an intense exercise routine after being cleared for my 6 week post delivery check up. I made shakes, join the YMCA, and still here I sit. I even ended up in the hospital with my pressure so high, I almost had a stroke. Check out what I realized after that here!
Oh and those plans for our home and school, let’s just say we are still in the trenches and they have been rewritten multiple times.
No! This isn’t a post about how I have now joined a program, started a new diet, or have some exciting new opportunity! In fact, this is the opposite.
What is my New Vision?
This post is about when I realized WHY I have not accomplished what I planned. After much reflection, self doubt, tears and prayer, I realized that all of the plans and goals I had for myself were pointless.
I realized that no matter how hard “I” tried, I would continually miss the mark. This past year, I realized that I created tons of goals for my life, but never checked in with the One who made me. I never asked God to tell me what He had for my life. My purpose and God’s purpose were not lining up because
“I never sought after Him and asked Him to reveal to me anything. “
So what do I do now? This year, I took the time to dedicate uninterrupted time to seek an answer from God. I asked Him to show me my purpose. You won’t believe how clear everything seemed. I mean it was almost instant! I became so clear on what God wanted for my life. I was reminded of the verse,
“…write the vision, make it plain…” (Hab 2:2)
How to Find Your New Vision
I am looking forward to what God is about to do in my life and the life of my family. I am beyond grateful to have a husband who fully supports me and also seeks God for guidance in his life. I am equally thankful for children who realize that seeking God for their purpose is a necessity. We even sat down and had them complete their “Write the Vision” vision boards for the year. (Make one with your kids using the (Write the Vision e-book)
Now I ask you: Have you given thought to what is ahead for you and your family? Have you taken the time to seek God first?
Don’t start this year off without first checking in and asking for guidance!
Come back here often to see how things are going and find out what we are up to.
Happy New Year!
Christel -Chaos Coordinator
5 AMAZING Places to find Vision Board Graphics
Creating a Vision Board is a great way to start the year. If you are a frequent visitor of Pinterest, you will easily find ideas on how to create a vision board and why you should have one.
I, on the other hand, am not like many people, I really do not enjoy crafty things. I love the idea of vision board, but just do not enjoy doing anything that revolves around cutting, gluing, or pasting.
With that said, I decided to bite the bullet and make an attempt to challenge my own children to make their personal Vision Boards. I wanted to support them, as much as I could, and help them find some amazing quotes and graphics.
So, I went to my close friend, Pinterest (we go way back) and was able to locate a ton of bloggers and websites that offer FREE graphics and quotes.
After saving all of my pins, I realized that I wanted to help other people find them. So, I made a post about the ones we used! Here are the links to the bloggers. You might have to subscribe to their email list, but it is totally worth it!
So there you have it folks! Visit us over on Facebook and post a few pictures of your Vision Board. We would love to see them!!
–Christel, “The Chaos Coordinator”
Forced into Self Care
I am sure you have noticed, it has been pretty quiet here at Perfectly Blended and Blessed. It wasn’t because of the holidays or because I was just too busy with finding great holiday shopping deals. In fact, I actually spent the entire weekend in bed.
“I can’t remember a time I felt so scared. I didn’t want to die.”
You see, I spend a lot of time encouraging other moms to take time for themselves. I remind them of the importance of self care while they are being supermom to their families. I tell them to pay attention to their health because they are also important.
Somewhere along the line, I forgot to follow my own advice. This weekend, I ended up in the hospital. I had been running my own body into the ground and almost lost my life. I had failed to take care of me in the midst of trying to take care of the world.
Moms, YOU ARE A PRIORITY!!
This weekend, I was humbly reminded that I can not care for anyone if I do not care for myself. I have to put my life as a priority also. I was reminded that I can’t pour from an empty cup. I was also reminded of how much my children and husband need me. I sat in my hospital bed imagining how broken and hurt my family would be if something happened to me. I imagined them feeling angry with me for leaving them. Then it hit me!
My Health is Important
I have tried many times to change our eating habits or exercise routines, but have always gotten off track for some reason or another. This weekend, I made a decision that all excuses must stop. I have to make some major changes in our eating and our self care routines (don’t forget to come back for those post😀).
I made a decision that there is no better time but the present to start taking care of the temple God has given me. I also accepted the responsibility that I have to teach my children how to care for themselves and see themselves as important.
I am thankful that God saw fit to extend my life. That tells me that my purpose is still yet to be fulfilled. God has a calling on my life and I need to take care of my body so He can use me for his glory!!!
Each day is a reminder that you have a purpose. Are you living that way?
Stroke and Heart Disease are serious health issues. To learn more visit healthythoughtsworld.org