Writing

Writing is incredibly liberating, but also completely terrifying.

As someone with anxiety, I can assure you that I overanalyze what I share. I sweat and stew about how people may interpret my musings, when I truly have good intentions with sharing.

Additionally, I am quite self conscious. I know that there are MANY areas that I could improve myself. There are many things I struggle with.

But I also have strengths. I love hard. I try hard. I love learning and being challenged and helping other people.

All of these characteristics are part of why I want to continue writing this blog. Because while I know many people will do things differently than I do, or see things differently than I do… there are some people that may find comfort and reassurance in these posts.

They will realize that someone else is not afraid to admit that momming is hard. That adulting is hard. That seeking God and understanding religion is far from easy.

But God is good. And life is beautiful. And there are so many reasons to be thankful…

Thanks for reading,

Brandi

An apology…

On Saturday morning after a few too many drinks the night before, I started thinking about how mean I am to myself.

I realized that if I said those things to anyone else, I would apologize. Because I am mean to me quite frequently. So here is that letter.

Hey B!

It’s me. Who is also you, only meaner. 😞

I’m sorry for putting you down all the time. I see you hiding back there, because you don’t know if you can trust me.

I get it. I wouldn’t know if I could trust me either.

You’re pretty great, ya know that?

You try so hard to be a good mother and wife. You realize when you make mistakes and try to rectify them, and then I won’t let you forget it. I’m sorry for that. You’re doing great. They know how much you love them… an infinite amount. And they love you, too — “to everywhere and back.”

You really want to feel good about yourself, and I’m always cutting you down with comments on your weight and pant size… and post-baby belly. I’m sorry for that as well. I know your body has grown three babies. That is AMAZING! For real. You’ve ran 2 half-marathons and you are doing PT so you can get back out there. You eat healthy and try to be a good example for your littles. You’re doing great! Keep going. You are strong and capable of whatever you want to do!

You want to do something big with your life, but you’re not sure what. I’ve made you so scared to make a mistake, that you are hesitant to even try new things. Quit listening to me! I put you down because I’m fearful. But you were not made for monotony. Seek adventure. Chase your dreams. You can do it! Whatever ‘it’ is. Go for it, Brandi. I have faith in you!

That little girl with the big heart and the quick smile is still in there. Bring her back. Be happy and strong and have FUN! Life is too short for this hiding.

I love you, B. You are flawed, but everyone is. God made you and who am I to keep holding you back?

Smile, girl, and fly.

Love you,

Me

When I was thinking about this, I could also imagine little Brandi peeking her head out from behind a tree. By the end, she was smiling and joyful.

This might sound a little out there, but consider writing yourself a letter of apology. If we want kindness to spread, we should probably start with ourselves.

Thanks for reading,

Brandi

#positiveselftalk

A daughter

I am new to this whole girl-mom thing, and I am extremely surprised by how different it seems to be (at least in our home).

Certainly there are similarities, but Rory is so much more interested in mimicking my actions. I do not recall the boys ever following me around while I tried to get ready for bed and doing exactly what I do.

Its heartwarming, but also a little daunting. I want to make sure I am being a good, strong role model for her. I hid the scale. I’m trying to stop with the negative self-talk, which is no easy feat for this procrastinating perfectionist… #notagreatcombo

I see her watching me and learning. And I force myself to show her confidence and strength. Weakness and fear certainly sneak in at times, but I hope she sees how I lean into God and her father for support.

I hope that she knows she can be both strong and supported. So many things to teach these young ones. So many great opportunities to empower them and show them all of us.

I hope I can be brave enough not to hide all my weaknesses. And that I can overcome some of them as well. #faithituntilyoumakeit

So… I guess this is my reminder that your littles are watching and learning. You don’t need to be perfect, but don’t be afraid to own your mistakes when they happen.

How else will they learn to fail with grace (and win with humility) if not from you?

Thanks for reading,

Brandi

P.S. the sass on this little ray of sunshine is a little concerning at times… #daughter #sheMAYgetthatfromhermomma

Unfamiliar territory

It’s been a while since I’ve written, as I have felt somewhat hesitant to share my thoughts as I made my way through the New Testament. That and the business that comes with my wife + mom gig, along with PharmD’ing and R+F’ing.

Anywho. I really enjoyed the gospels. Reading about Jesus and his actions are so humbling. His storytelling techniques can be pretty hard to decipher, but I really have started thinking through my actions in a different way. I try to use patience and lead with love, although this Trudeau temper runs deep. I’m basically bringing back the #wwjd phenom. Although I still fail in many ways daily, as we all do. He saved me on the cross, so trying to lead with kindness seems like a pretty small job in comparison.

Working through the bible did cause me to stumble upon some inflammatory verses. Women being silent in churches and wives submitting to husbands. This girl did not agree or appreciate those sentiments. But I’ve done research and am finding some context. Can’t say I’ve completely worked it out, but I’m trying.

The biggest thing, for me, is that I’ve started craving that time. I enjoy reading the Bible. I enjoy praying. Although, I did have an angry entry the other day in my prayer journal. #seeabove #strongwoman #angryelf

But I think that’s okay. I felt better after I voiced my frustration about that particular verse, and then I did some research.

My take home message is this:

Pray. However you want to start. Whether its awkward or not. Just Pray. Whether you’re happy or sad or mad or scared. Just pray. Make it a habit. 🙏

I have a prayer journal that I write in, which I love. I can go back to see what I was praying for a few months ago and where I am now. I also like to write out verses that I’m pulled to on that particular day.

And through it all, remember that Jesus dined with the sinners. He is here for you all the time, regardless of what sins may be in your past/present.

This girl is off to bed. Good night all!

Brandi

Faith

For the past few years, I have been praying for a clear path. For guidance on what I should be doing with my life.

I have never been very engaged in organized religion, but I have always believed in God. I prayed often, but I had alot of questions. Were questions okay? If I asked a hard question that made people uncomfortable, would people get offended? Get angry? I didn’t know.

My background

I grew up Catholic in a small town. Hell and purgatory seemed like very real options. God was a person to fear, who also had alot of rules. But He would also forgive your sins through Confession. And sometimes I heard of how loving He is. This combination led to a lot of confusion. Perceived judgement from other Christians and issues with certain beliefs ultimately led us to quit going to church altogether.

I actually went to a Catholic college for undergrad. Basketball is what led me there ( #golancers ), but I truly enjoyed the religious classes. Some of the nuns were amazing. Very down to earth, with a strong faith, and a desire to do good. I loved learning the beginnings of Christianity and the reasoning behind some of the traditions. I chose to get confirmed.

After college, I was unable to find a church that felt as real to me as MMC did. I wandered away again.

Within the past year, I started coming back to God after reading some books by Jen Hatmaker. I read some devotionals. I read more Jen Hatmaker. And suddenly, I was excited about Jesus. I was interested and engaged. I was happy that Jen (we’re on a 1st name basis now, obviously) made it okay to question things about God. About Christianity. About everything. Because I like science. I am curious. And I cannot sign onto something if I do not agree with all of it.

And during this time of prayer and my continued requests for guidance, I felt a nudge to read the bible and write about it. I’ve been reading the New Testament and doing research on some inflammatory passages. And I think it’s time to Listen. I’m not ready to follow His other nudge, but I’m going to lean with this one.

I’m not sure what this will look like or how well it will be received, but I’m going to give it a shot.

Hope you all have a wonderful Mother’s Day weekend!

-Brandi

#faith #christian

Saying Yes

I just snuck downstairs after snuggling a 6 y.o. ninja until he fell asleep. I couldn’t help but smile as I thought about the ridiculousness of his outfit, along with his brother’s in the room beside him…

You see, tonight, dad was in charge of the showers, the brushing of teeth, and the other necessities for bedtime.

When I walked up the steps to fulfill my cuddling duties, I was greeted by the boys climbing into Halloween costumes. I laughed and said I had come up to help with bedtime, but that it looked like dad had things under control. 😁 Brandon laughed and shook his head.

It was past our goal bedtime, but pretty much right on for our normal. I was tired. Brandon worked this weekend, so he was as well. Fatigue is not as readily accepted in our children, and our 4 y.o. decided that his 1st costume was too tight so he needed a different one. He accepted the second option when he was informed there was no other option available (besides normal pjs). #sometimesanoisneeded

And then I snuggled with my young ninja and smiled. 😍🙂 I realized that if I had been in charge, we likely would have skipped the costumes. I am an efficient bedtime leader, as this momma is usually ready for some quiet time. I imagine I would have given a hard no to that request.

But… I also realized that this is one of my favorite memories of late. Of their joyful faces as they got into bed with their costumes on.

This was a good reminder to say “yes” a little more often…

Especially when that yes costs no money and offers another reason to use those costumes. 🙌🏼

Also… dads rock. ⬇️ #bothtrueandhilarious

Happy Sunday!

Brandi

P.S. Shonda Rimes wrote a book on this as well. Check it out below if you’d like! https://smile.amazon.com/Year-Yes-Dance-Stand-Person/dp/1476777128/ref=smi_www_rco2_go_smi_g3365208742?_encoding=UTF8&%2AVersion%2A=1&%2Aentries%2A=0&ie=UTF8

#parenting #sayyes #daddyissmart

Heavy

Sometimes parenting is heavy. You pour your souls into these little ones and, at times, you’re left feeling empty. They’re finally in bed and you have nothing left. You feel exhausted. Depleted. Heavy. None of those depictions are pretty. All of them are honest.

I know that I am incredibly blessed to have these little ones to raise and love and teach. I would do nearly anything for my children. I am working my ass off to raise good humans. And they’re pretty good, most the time.

But shit. Somedays are just plain hard. Some weeks are hard.

And that’s okay. I think it’s good to be honest about the reality of parenting. It’s okay to vent. It’s okay to step away and eat some peanut butter in the pantry while praying to God for just a wee bit more patience. It’s okay to go to the gym, or take a night away.

Do what you need to fill your cup. Mother. Father. Teacher. Daycare provider. All of us that are in the childrearing field need to remember to take time for ourselves.

I’m sure you’ve heard it before. I know I have.

I am just not sure that I’ve felt like my cup feel this quickly, and repeatedly, drained. I am pouring too much out too quickly, despite my best efforts.

The only change I am sure of in the past week, is that I’ve been slacking in my reading of the bible. Direct correlation? I have no idea. But I’ll be hopping back on the train this week.

Because no matter how hard today was, we’ll go to sleep tonight and try again tomorrow. We’ll keep trying. And talking. And snuggling. And praying for these little crappers. Because we couldn’t imagine our lives without them…

And just by sharing these unpleasant emotions, I have begun to feel a little lighter.

Thanks for reading,

Brandi