march on.

March.
What a month this has been.

March 1 marked the day after my nephew’s due date and the start of a crazy fundraising campaign for Douglas County Young Life. So much has happened since that day.

 

T H E . H O S P I T A L .

Around 9:00 p.m. on Wednesday, March 5, I received the text from my sister Rosie that she was in labor. Immediately I called her, made arrangements for Lydia, picked up Rosie’s dog from their house, ran by home, pumped, and was at the hospital by 10:30 p.m. My nephew, Joel Michael, was born on Wednesday, March 6 in the early afternoon. I had the honor of being in the labor and delivery room, at Rosie’s side, through it all.

I saw my sister endure 14 hours of natural labor, displaying an inner strength and self-control I always knew she had. I saw the way Luke deeply loves Rosie. If I could count the number of times that he told her that she was beautiful and how proud he was of her, I’d be in the hundreds. I saw baby Joel’s sweet face as he was being born, witnessing his father shout the long-awaited gender reveal that it’s a boy, and his mother embrace him repeating “my boy, my boy…”

Luke and Rosie wept at the sight of him.
I did too.
Immediate joy filled the room.
Our lives will never be the same.

I walked out of the room to the waiting room. At this point I hadn’t slept in 30-some hours, or eaten much, or pumped. I didn’t realize how badly my head was throbbing. Would I do it again? Yes. One million times over, yes.

 

B A C K . H O M E .

Later that evening, after a much-needed afternoon nap, I was feeding Lydia her dinner. Kevin was out of town until the next day and it’s fair to say I was completely exhausted. Instead of eagerly eating each bite until she became disinterested, Lydi started grabbing the spoon, yanking it with her way-too-strong grip, tossing food everywhere, crying, and throwing a fit. Sleep deprived and low on patience, I raised my voice at her, attempting to pull the spoon back from her strong grip. She took one look at me in confusion and sadness before erupting into a full-on meltdown.

Ironically,
on the day that I held my newborn nephew,
my daughter displayed her first signs of toddler.

It wasn’t until the next day, after a full night of sleep, after Kevin got home from traveling, that I was able to put words to my emotions in that moment. As I processed the birth of my nephew, I realized that my baby is no longer a baby.

Well, she is, technically. At 10-months old, she was still two months away from being considered a “toddler” by definition and, trust me, I’m savoring this time. But nevertheless, it hit me, this past month, that indeed my season of life with my first baby as a baby is coming to an end.

I prayed for a lot of grace, patience, and the ability to love Lydia for who she is in the stage she’s in, never wishing she was in a stage that passed or a stage to come. But loving who she is now.

I love that she voices opinions and preferences.
I love that she’s so close to walking.
I love that she’s so curious, constantly on the move and getting into anything and everything.
I love that she’s so aware of people around her, looking to share and play whenever she can.
I love 10-month-old Lydia.

The grace to acknowledge that my season of her as a baby is coming to an end helps me to love her better where she’s at now. Acceptance gives me patience with her every time she throws a fit during mealtime or diaper changes. The peace amist time moving forward has allowed me to not be so insecure, wondering if her behavior is a reflection of me, but instead laughing off what’s outside of my control and commit to truly parenting her.

In this renewed mentality, I have the freedom to love her for who she is and not who I wish her to be.

 

M A R C H . O N .

I started a playlist that I’ve been listening to on repeat that I titled March On. It served as the subtle reminder to keep going with the fundraising campaign. To keep going during the hours of schoolwork late at night as I hope to finish my Master’s degree this May. To keep going as I try to squeeze in my two workouts per week, attempting to stay healthy. To keep going while I work from home, maximizing every millisecond of Lydi’s naptime.

This month seemed like a grind, but now that it’s over and I look back, I am in shock and awe at God’s provision.

I witnessed our Lord provide an additional $22,000 in funding support for Douglas County Young Life from over 65 different people.

I celebrated a beautiful gender reveal party for one of my best friends, Keely, whose journey has included three consecutive miscarriages.

I’ve seen my sister thrive as a new momma, overcoming the adversity of being a new parent, and experience the joy of motherhood.

I’ve celebrated birthdays, engagements, milestones, pregnancy announcements of dear friends, and more. Time is moving forward, and, in joy, so will I.

This thing we call life.
It is beautiful.
It is worth it.
It is worth marching on.

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