Thursday, May 28, 2015


So I have started running again (well right now, walking/running).  The other day I was trying to complete the final leg of the actual running part of my workout and I was just DONE.  I didn't see how I was possibly going to make it that final block.  My lungs burned, my legs ached, and I wanted to quit.  "I should just start walking now,"  I told myself.  But I could see the end of the block.  I could see the footpath that signified the end of the run and the beginning of the cool down.  So I pushed myself and, fast forward a few moments, I completed the run.

As I was pushing through the final length, it dawned on my "Many of the most significant things that have happened to me were just like this final leg of my run."

I enjoyed high school for the most part, but my senior year was a hot mess.  I had a falling out with some friends, worked two jobs to help put money aside for college, broke up with my "high school sweetheart", and could not figure out for the life of me what trig was all about. Frankly, I was just DONE with school in the small town in which I grew up.  Fast forward through the summer and I began college which was by far the highlight of my school career.

Just like trig, I never quite got the hang of flirting.  I was also terrified of getting hurt, so rarely took any chances in the dating world.  Yes, I dated but I found myself going on two dates with a guy and it would fizzle out.  I just wasn't willing to take a chance of getting my heart broken.  Finally, I dated a very nice, very safe guy for a few months when we both finally came to the conclusion that we were not a good fit for one another.  After that relationship ended I was just DONE with dating and felt I needed to focus on other things.  Fast forward two months and I began dating my husband who is by far the love of my life and my soul mate.

The other love of my life is education.  While it is definitely some of the hardest work I think a person can do and I have done my fair share of venting on a day to day basis, I truly love teaching and watching those I teach make connections and learn new things.  In my final year of teaching though I found myself at a school that was not a good fit.  That year was by far the most difficult that I had experienced as a teacher and due to a hiring freeze, transfer freeze, and unwillingness to put myself through another year of torment I was just DONE with teaching.  Fast forward a few weeks and I was hired to be the founding elementary school principal of a brand new charter school which by far been professionally the most exhausting but most rewarding experience of my career.

I have always heard that motherhood is the most exhausting but most rewarding endeavor a woman can pursue.   For the past 4.5 years I have pursed this endeavor with vigor, and frankly feel exhausted. I am still hopeful but in my darker moments, my eyes burn with tears, my heart aches, and sometimes I think it would be easier to just quit.   The destination of this leg of the journey is still unclear, but maybe if I could fast forward things just a little it would all make sense...

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Lose Yourself in the Music

Yesterday, was Memorial Day and I traveled to PA to visit my family over the long weekend (JT & the puppies stayed home so he could study for his technical interview this week)  On the way home yesterday I was moved to tears by this song that encapsulates what we truly need to remember on Memorial Day:

For as long as a can remember, music has always played an important role in my life.  I can hear a song and perfectly recall a place, an event, a memory, a feeling I had experienced.  I love music and cannot imagine going even one day without it.  This song is what I consider to be out theme song for our adoption journey to date:

In two and half weeks, this song will be in the rotation.  It is music to my ears!

Monday, May 18, 2015

One Year Later

A year ago this past weekend we made the decision to pursue adoption.

The Good

  • I am married to my best friend who helps keep me sane and laughing during this journey.
  • We worked through the application and prep phase with relative ease and our wait has been uneventful so far.
  • We have checked off a number of things to do while your waiting items (especially what I feel are some of the most important ones)
  • We took a "babymoon" (or whatever the less cheesy phrase is) to England 
  • Another successful school year is about to go in the books (in 16 days, but who is counting?!) and I have a plan for where I want to go next in Education.
  • My faith has strengthened exponentially and I am learning more and more each day that God's plan is my plan (and not the other way around).
The Less Good
  • We continue to wait...and wait...and wait
The Ugly
  • I have gained what I am calling the "adoption 10" (it's not a thing yet, but, hey, it may catch on...)
Not much I can do about "the less good", but I started yesterday working on "the ugly".  I am giving two weeks of clean eating a shot.  I also started running this morning.  Given the 90 degree heat this week, I am running before school.  Believe it or not, I think I like running at dawn (of course I may be singing a different tune when the novelty wears off).

Wednesday, May 13, 2015

A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood

After two days of stifling heat, the high today was in the lower 80s and it was the perfect afternoon to run away from work and hangout on our porch.  I am feeling a bit overwhelmed at work this week (this is rare), but it's not so much from the actual work I do rather the people around me.  No one person in particular, it just seems as though lots of people are going through lots of stuff right now and in the role I am in I am usually the one that has to help sort through it or provide support on the work front so they can sort through it on their own.  The end of last week and the beginning of this week especially have led to what feels like a lot of weight on my shoulders.

Some of that weight is lifting though as a listen to the birds, enjoy the view, and just relax.  

We have several new families who have moved into our neighborhood.  Previously there were four five families that had school aged children.  Three of the families who have moved in have either a baby or no children yet.  That makes me happy as it means there may be neighborhood kids for our little one to play with once she or he arrives.

That would of course mean that we would actually need to do something to forge a bond beyond just waving politely, but there is clearly lots of time for that:).

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mother's Day

Growing up, Mother's Day was a floating holiday in our household.  My dad wanted to celebrate my mom, but didn't like the idea of Hallmark dictating when we should do it  (I also think it maybe had to do with long waits at restaurants, but I digress...).  We generally celebrated the weekend before or after everyone else with a meal out, cards, and flowers.  So for as long as I can remember Mother's Day has been an annual celebration on my calendar as it is on the calendars of almost everyone I know.

While most people I know look forward to Mother's Day, there are also others who view this days with impending dread or a mixture of joy and sadness.

I am blessed to have a wonderful mother.  She is always there for me--no matter what.  I am blessed that she is not only my mother, but also one of my very best friends.  As an adult, daughter you cannot ask for more than a combination like that.  So there is joy in Mother's Day for me as the daughter of a loving mother.

But while there is joy, there is also sadness.  When we first began trying to start a family I remember thinking I may not be a mom this year, but next Mother's day I will be.  Looking back I was attempting to sooth my hurting heart, but  I now realize I was setting myself up for disappointment because. for whatever reason, becoming a mother is not something I have any control over.  

I recognize that this sadness is not mine alone, and, in fact isn't just reserved for those of us who have yet to have children.  It is with the above in mind, I offer this prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

You are so good.  You are with us in times of celebration.  You are celebrating with mothers and their families.  You are celebrating with mothers who have given life, but also women who have nurtured life:  Grandmothers, Stepmothers, Adoptive mothers, teachers, mentors, the list goes on and on.  You are providing an opportunity for the children (both young and grown) who have been blessed by wonderful women to let them know just how much they mean to them.

You are so good.  Just as you are with those who are celebrating, you are also with those of us who are hurting.  You are comforting men and women, boys and girls, who have lost their mother.  You are comforting men and women who are estranged from their mother.  You are comforting mothers who have lost a child or are estranged from a child.  You are comforting birth mothers who have placed a child for adoption.  You are comforting those of us who wish to be mothers, but are not yet, or may not ever be.

For it is only through your comfort that I feel a sense of peace today, and for that I give thanks.  In your holy and precious name I pray. Amen.

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Happy No Diet Day!

Image result for may 6 no diet day

Who even knew this was a thing?!?  I am certainly celebrating and have been for the last few months now. 

 For the last two years, when signs of spring began to appear late February/early March (you gotta love living in the South!) I felt this wonderful intrinsic motivation to run.  In 2013 that resulted in regularly running up to 3 miles.  Then in 2014 I started regularly running up to 5 miles.  

So for 2015 I set a goal of running 300 miles for the year.  Total number of miles to date:  2.

Now keep in mind this time that was once spent running, has been replaced with sitting on my butt and snacking when I get home from school.  Not exactly a winning combination.  

For the first few weeks of my new "workout routine" there wasn't much of change, but now I am definitely seeing the fat that replaced the muscle and there seems to be more of me:(.  The thing is I TOTALLY know all the right things to do, and have proven to myself I can do them.  But you want to know something?---I don't wanna!  

After reflecting on this for the last few days, I think I know the cause.  I am stress eating and when I stress eat, not exercising seems to come hand in hand for some reason.  I am stress eating because I have hit another mental hurdle in the (seemingly never ever journey) to start a family.  I wish I could learn what my triggers are, but I just don't know.  

What I do know is that, come August, five years will have passed since we decided that we were ready to become parents.  What I do know is that in those five years I have watched friends and colleagues have not just one, but in many cases two babies while our nursery remains empty.  What I do know is that I feel deep down in my heart that God will bless us with a child, but what I don't know is when.  

I so desperately want this to by my prayer, but these physical signs of stress that keep popping up (not sleeping well in the fall, hives in the winter, and now this) are clear indicators that I am anxious and therefore lacking in complete trust.  Honestly, I'm not sure how...


Sunday, May 3, 2015

Nice Weekend

Friday night the biggest decision I had to make was whether to stop for wine or peach vodka and tea on the way home (went with the latter) as I caught up on TV and ate pizza with JT.  The perfect way to end a hectic week.

Saturday we went to see Avengers (not bad but I find the fight scenes slow down the plot) and took a stroll around the shopping village where the theater is located.  My bank account is safe because after seeing the patterns and cuts for this season, nothing was working for me.

We then went to a local watering hole:

Image result for crafty beer guys

We spent the afternoon on the porch playing board games, talking, meeting new neighbors, and hanging out with my brother and a new friend of his.  

We got hungry and headed out to dinner.  My brother and his friend were going to another place to watch the "big fight", but we tapped out and went home.

Today has involved pancakes and gearing up to knock out the weekly chores to do list.

So nothing too terribly exciting, but definitely a nice weekend!

Friday, May 1, 2015

Looking ahead

A little while ago I began to wonder what was next for me.  For the last few years I thought it was motherhood, but that will come when it comes so it seems.

I realize that my current position is not one I wish to maintain forever.  There are parts of it that I love, but there are also parts of it that I do not love.  While I am sure that is true of every job, the work I do effects so many people that I do not think it is fair to continue in it for the long term when my heart really isn't in it.

A next step that I had considered before we became more focused on starting a family was going for my doctorate in hopes of teaching at the collegiate level.  Over the last year or so I started thinking I wanted to go back into the classroom because I missed the connection being a teacher presented; however, after some deep thought, conversation with my boss, and a resume that crossed my desk that opened my eyes to what my future might hold if I made that particular change, the desire to teach at the collegiate level was reignited.

In researching the doctorate I wish to hold, there is really only one option in regard to University to attend.  Their 2015 fall class has closed, so I am currently pursuing admittance for 2016.  I am hoping that God's plan for the year in between has something to do with a little person joining our family, but I will keep my eyes and ears open just in case He has another plan in mind:).