Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Why I Blog (even though I haven't in a while)

The last couple of months have been a particularly challenging time for me.  For the first time since I started blogging, I just haven't had the energy or the desire to sit down and write blog posts.  Normally, blogging is something I really enjoy.  It serves several purposes in my life:

~It gives me an quick, easy way to document our family and its happenings.
~It is a great way to keep friends and extended family "in the loop". 

~It really is an outlet for me to share my heart, vent about my frustrations, and even sometimes minister to others.  

~I often blog about things that I would never scrapbook about or even remember.  I like that.  I like the authenticity of it.  I like how it captures our day-to-day.  I like how I can share the good, the bad, and the ugly.  When I used to scrapbook(only Cody and Lauren have actual completed baby books, Abby's is halfway done, and the other three, well, I am sorry kids.  maybe someday) I would include the highlights of our life, the good stuff.  I didn't really share my struggles or even the monotony of my life.  On my blog, I share those things.  Like the fact that I drove 80 miles yesterday, in town, getting everyone to and from school and their activities.  I wouldn't scrapbook about that, but it is something that I will look back on and will like to be reminded of when I no longer have those long days in the truck.  

~It gives me an opportunity to share about Beyond Survival, our ministry to Swaziland.

Now, to why I haven't in a while:

~As my kids are getting older, I am finding it increasingly hard to REALLY SHARE without embarrassing them or sharing all of our "dirty laundry" for all to see.  My older kids are constantly saying, "Don't share this on your blog" or "I will only let you take a picture if you won't put it on your blog."  I am one of those people that can't really hide what I am feeling.  You can pretty much look at my face and tell what I am thinking.  It is the same with my writing.  I struggle to share all the good and  leave out the bad.  BUT, I value my relationship with my kids more than I need to share.  So, I really have to pick and choose what I include.

~This stage of parenting is HARD for me.  The age ranges of our kids (16-6) are so hard to maneuver.  On one hand, I have teenagers on the verge of becoming adults.  I have discovered that every instinct I have in parenting has not prepared me for this stage.  I am desperately trying to give up control but also maintain the values we have in our home.  On the other hand, I still have a 6 and 7 year old who very much need boundaries in their lives.  I cannot parent my older kids the way I always have, but yet, I still need to parent the younger ones that way.  The tension of parenting older kids, maintaining relationship with them, and loving them unconditionally is plunging me to depths I have never known.  How do I write about that without betraying their trust?  I cannot figure that out.
~This summer was harder on me than I ever expected.  Sam's unexpected, emergency surgery really rocked me.  We spent so much time preparing for that Swazi trip and getting our whole family to KY so that we could go.  We prayed and really felt like it was time for Sam to go.  Then, two days before we left the country, BAM!  There we sat in the hospital just praying that he would make it through surgery before his appendix ruptured.  Why did that happen when it did?  Don't get me wrong, I am beyond grateful at God's protection over Sam.  It happened in the U.S. where we had great medical care.  BUT, really, 2 days before our trip??  
Rick had to leave while Sam was still in the hospital.  Then, Sam and I had to travel across the world alone.  That was very stressful for me.  In the end, Sam and I still got to go to Swaziland, but the emotional toll that the whole experience took on me is something I am still dealing with.  
~Life has just been crazy.  I know I say that a lot, but it is so true.  I feel like the minute we returned to CO, I began preparing for school to start.  Uniforms, school supplies, haircuts, doctor's visits, etc.  So much goes into getting them all ready.  Then, we have Meet and Greets, Orientations, Back-to-School Nights, Testing.  As my Swazi friends would say, "Eish!"  
~We are in the midst of 16 days of celebration leading up to Cody's 16th Birthday!
~The Last reason I have not been blogging is because I have been in the midst of my 3rd Whole30.  If you know anything about Whole30, you know that it is A LOT of work and for me, really affects my ability to do other things.  In the end, it is so good and I really see results in how I feel and look.  It is worth it, but at the same time, all consuming.  

 I really, really, really hope that I can catch up now that the kids are back in school.  I need to go back to July and bring everything up-to-date from our summer.  

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