We Are Seventeen
Updated: May 8, 2018
Hi and welcome to my VERY FIRST blog post!
I just have to pause and soak this moment in for a second (cue happy dance music)….
Ok let’s keep going before I get distracted and another two years pass by. YES, it’s true, it took two years to get here. Well, technically I wasn’t writing for two years.
I would definitely have to rethink this whole blogging thing if it took that long to produce content.
The two years were spent questioning if I’d actually heard God correctly when He said, “Write!” and then mustering up the courage TO write when I was sure that He had.
I WAS SO AFRAID of rejection and failure that I almost let it keep me from God’s best! I had to reach a point where being obedient was more important than being liked or understood.
Look at that, we’ve only known each other a few moments and I’m already confessing my fears and weaknesses to you. Nothing like a heavy dose of vulnerability to get a friendship going don’t ya think? :)
I thought it only fitting that my introduction into the blogging community be…
an introduction of course!!
If I want you to come back after today (and I really do), then it’s only fair I give you a glimpse into who I am and what you’re in for.
I’m a stay at home mom who’s just caught the DIY bug. I literally want to sand and paint everything in our home!
NOTHING IS SAFE!!!
I love plants, pretty paper, and depressing music! I hate eggplant, scary movies, and confrontation (I avoid it like the plague).
I know, I know! Confrontation is a part of life, healthy even and I need to get better at it. I’m a work in progress. What can I say?
I’ve been married 11 years to the most handsome guy. We met in high school and it was love at first sight. Ha! That’s actually not true at all, but the truth is long and messy and we’ll have to save that story for another day. We have three perfectly imperfect kids (15, 9, and 7) and two mischievous dogs.
There you have it. That’s our little family in a nutshell.
Are you totally confused now? Did you think because of my blog title there was going to be 17 of us? I always wanted a big family, but that would be CrAzy big, and I can assure you if our family was that size, I’d have zero time for blogging.
Seventeen is the percentage of marriages that last when there is a child with a disability in the home!
Is that crazy to you? I know it was to me the first time I heard it. My heart hurt as I thought of the 83%! It broke as I wondered if Chris and I were destined to such a fate.
Our youngest son, Jacob was diagnosed around the age of one with Cerebral Palsy,
a neurological disorder caused by a non-progressive brain injury or malformation that occurs while the child’s brain is underdeveloped (wow that’s a mouthful)!
He does not walk or talk and needs assistance doing everything (feeding, toileting, bathing, ….). He has the most incredible smile and a joy that’s infectious. He is ridiculously cute and I’m pretty sure he knows it.
I adore him!
I value him!
I enjoy him!
But I’d be lying if I said being his mama was always easy…..It’s not.
It’s exhausting. It’s lonely. It’s consuming. Early on in our journey Chris and I felt swallowed up by disability’s demands. We spent so much time and energy caring for Jacob that all else was neglected, including our other children and our marriage.
We knew such a rhythm was unhealthy and damaging and we longed for change.
I wish I could say that upon such realization we changed things quickly and completely, but that was not the case at all. It was and still is a process of growth and grace. We fail and fall flat on our faces sometimes, but there have been so many victories. We have learned that while Jacob needs A LOT of us (our time, energy, attention) he cannot have all of us. We must make space for more!
So dates are a must around here. They don’t have to be fancy, but they better be frequent.
And not just dates with each other, dates with our older kids also. Now dates with them might be a 10 min walk around the block to escape the insanity inside our home, but the time and place aren’t what’s important,
it’s creating S P A C E for them that matters.
It’s saying with our actions that we have time for you and you are a priority to us.
And at the very top of the “Things We Make Space For” list is Jesus. Time with Him is what makes all the other things we want in life possible. We know that without Him we will never be the spouses or parents we so desire to be and neglecting our relationship with Him because life is busy is not an option!
We Are the Seventeen!!
The broken, brave, beautiful seventeen!
We are here not because we have it together or because we have some secret magic formula, but because we fight to be here. We wake up every day with the resolve
to be here,
for each other,
no matter what!
Being the parent of a SPECIAL need’s child is a difficult road to walk but it’s also a privileged one and we will walk or limp or crawl down it hand in hand till we’re wrinkly and gray! Till death do us part!
WE REMAIN THE SEVENTEEN!