Once Upon My Very 1st Mother’s Day

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When I was 22 years old, one year after I was married, and one month after talking a pill that made my body ovulate like it should, I found out I was pregnant with my first child.

I remember the disbelief I felt as I read the pregnancy test. Joseph was at work on a Saturday, framing houses. I couldn’t wait until after work to tell him the news so I decided to drive to the job site and tell him in person. I was so shaky with excitement that I actually tripped down my front stairs on the way to my car. I laughed picking myself up and looked around quick to make sure no one had seen me biff it, and off I hopped into my car. I drove over to his job site and got out walking to where he was standing. He must have seen the look on my face because his smile spread out big and he said, “What’s going on?” I told him that he was going to be a daddy and he said, “Oh my gosh, no way!! That’s so great babe!! I told you everything would be fine!!” He gave me a huge hug and I just jumped into his arms. If he stands up straight, he lifts me off the ground, and he did. When he set me down he gave me a kiss and patted my belly. I beamed with pride and joy. I could not believe I was going to be a mom!!! I waited all my life for this…

Part of my first trimester of pregnancy was spent on bed rest with cramping. I was on progesterone shots and had to drink so much water every day. I was considered high risk because of the contractions and I was scared that I was going to lose my baby.

Joseph already told me he knew we were only going to have boys because in the last 80 years of Williams’ history, there was only one girl. So I prepared myself for my baby being a boy and accepted I’d probably never have a girl. It didn’t matter. I was happy with whoever!

My parents took us to a furniture store and bought us nursery furniture even though the fear of losing my baby loomed over me. I felt like it was too good to be true. But we now had the nursery furniture and my mother was going to make all my blankets and sheets for the baby. My nursery theme was moon and stars in BLUE and we bought a blue car seat.

When May 13th 2001 rolled around, I was all of about 3 months pregnant. I was finally off bed rest and it was Mother’s day. Knowing how thoughtful my husband was, and all we had gone through to get pregnant and trying to STAY pregnant, I just knew that my first Mother’s Day was going to be special. It seemed perfectly acceptable for us to celebrate because I was with child. I was a mother. Joseph was no dummy.

That morning I woke up preparing myself for the surprise of flowers and a card- ya know, something to celebrate… and after a while of not seeing anything special I asked my husband… “Did you forget something..” And he was like…”Huh?” And I stared at him blankly. “It’s Mother’s Day. Are you just playing with me?” And my thoughtful husband said… “But… you’re… not… a mommmmm yet….” And by this point I was utterly confused. “What are you talking about? We have a baby don’t we? Just because it’s not born yet doesn’t mean I’m not…a mom.” Me: Blinking… disbelief…confusion…more blinking and staring. Joseph: Deer in the headlights look. “I mean…” He stuttered. My face fell. “You’ve got to be kidding me!” I was crushed. Here I thought he was just joking and he would pull out a card and say just kidding. But he didn’t. I turned around devastated and  walked to the bathroom shutting the door loudly and got in the shower so I could cry. Oh I was so hurt. I thought for sure he would know how important this day was. I was told I may never have children and yet, here I was, finally pregnant and then was on bed rest for a month and… we could have lost the baby.. and he didn’t think it would be a good idea to celebrate Mother’s Day? What? Oh I cried. I was so upset. And then just when I thought I was done showering and was going to get out I thought… No. I’m not done being sad yet. So I stayed in an extra 5 minutes sulking.

I finally got out of the shower after 20 minutes. I went into our room and got dressed and brushed my hair which took 5 minutes tops. When I came out of the bedroom to talk to my husband I found him sitting in the living room where he was before, with flowers and a card. I was shocked. “What is this??! I thought you forgot…” And he said, “Spring, you know better than that! I had it all along but you got out of bed so quick this morning I didn’t have a chance to get the card and present out of my hiding spot yet. I can’t let you see my hiding spot! You almost ruined my surprise!” My heart swelled! “I really thought you forgot, Baby!” Now I was crying happy tears and hugging him. What a great guy I married!  He looked at me and said “No. I don’t forget. You are very important to me. This is your first Mother’s Day with our little Peanut.” I was elated.

It was the happiest Mother’s Day for me to date. Each year after that I always woke up to flowers and a card in which he told me how grateful he was for me and all that mush. He never revealed where he hid the presents, but as the years unfolded, I realized his hiding spot was the neighborhood grocery store.

That very first Mother’s Day; seeing my great disappointment in not getting an acknowledgement for “our little bun in my oven”, he took the opportunity to leave the house while I was in the shower, drive the car like he stole it to the nearest grocery store which was a good 8 minutes away- buy flowers and a meaningful card, drive back home in mock speed, and sitting on the couch at the exact moment (with signed card equipped with all the sentimentality I loved) when I walked out of our bedroom.

Five days before I turned 23, we welcomed my birthday present, a little girl, Evie Spring Williams. Her daddy cried when she was born. We took her home in her blue car seat. The rest of my Mother’s Days after that, were a blur.

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Facebook page for videos and other snippits.

Singing with my Girl

 

Jack of All Trades

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You know some time has passed on your blog when you *almost* forget your password to log in. That’s not saying much for this scatterbrain who makes up super creative passwords for everything and then misplaces the papers she wrote the passwords on.

I love nothing more than sharing about my family. They are my pride and joy which is why I have to learn the art of prioritizing. I am a work in progress when it comes to ALL THE THINGS vying for my attention and for what NEEDS to get done vs: what I WANT to get done.

Writing is like painting. You can’t just paint a masterpiece when you aren’t inspired and you can’t write anything of quality when you’re not feeling it. (Or in my case super crunched for time, without an extra second left over for forming meaningful words other than “Stop wiping peanut butter all over your school clothes!”.)  My present reality is that my sweet husband is co-coaching my son’s baseball team and that leaves me to get the other 4 kids to their one activity that meets multiple times a week and remember to do laundry. Oh and throw food at them so they stay alive. I am failing at laundry but my kids are thriving which reminds me I need to make a Costco trip.

One day a couple of weeks ago, I finally made time and spent half my day cleaning bathrooms. I’m pretty sure we are the minority in our neighborhood, without a cleaning lady. We are also in the minority with 6 kids! I like to remind myself whilst I am bending over toilets that “I am saving $80 bucks a week doing this myself”. Why aren’t my kids cleaning toilets you ask… well they are.. They are supposed to be cleaning their rooms too, and helping out each day in whatever way I deem necessary at the time. And they do. They actually have to do a chore to earn a privilege and they have their set chores for the day along with homework. The shelf life for a clean and organized home around here is about 1 day. It is a pipe dream of mine to have the whole house clean at the same time– while we all live here in peace and harmony and in perfect organization. Ha! Until then, I got this ‘bathroom spin scrubber thingy’ that cleans at the push of a button and it’s almost like heaven.

I just recently purged closets and took out clothes too small and replaced with “new” grow intos. Organizing gives me great joy and then my kids swoop in and ruin it. While my closets are super clean right now, the rest of the house looks like a hurricane hit. Welcome to my world.

Throughout my marriage I have had little jobs here and there to bring in extra money. If I worked full-time, we’d have to hire a cleaning lady, a chauffeur, and a nanny. I would basically be paying someone else to “be me” and the money I earned would not exist anymore. It would be a wash. So like a  Proverbs 31 Woman I have learned to be creative and thrifty and frugal with my family’s resources and it’s a bonus when I bring in a little extra cash sometimes. It usually goes straight to groceries because teenagers eat like horses.

I have sold hundreds of paintings over 10 years, taught art lessons, hosted art and wine parties, worked a couple of MLM companies here and there (not my thing), ran a drop in day care, and currently I decorate people’s homes on the side.  Each skill set I acquired since being a wife and mom, was during a time of great difficulty. The trying times gave birth to new growth. My little odd jobs started amidst birthing babies, taking care of a chronically ill child, raising 6 kids, homeschooling (lets just say I tried) and taking care of sick parents while volunteering through various healing ministries in the church. What you learn along the way builds upon itself and can then help in even more areas. Sometimes I just thought I was in survival mode, yet I was being trained.

My first priority is my family. I want to be here when the kids get home from school. I want to take them TO school and talk in a funny British accent and hold whoever’s hand is in shotgun that day. I want to pray with them each morning and night. I also want to date my husband! I want to remember his eye color and hold his hand. It all started with us and we need to keep our relationship strong. And to keep that a priority, I need to fill up from the fount of Living Water. I need my Jesus, so I can pour out over my family. I can’t give if I have an empty cup.

Raising a large family ain’t no joke. Every mom wears multiple hats and our hats look a lot different depending on our certain circumstances. We do what we have to do and then some. God gives each of us talents and the ability to grow our skill set over time. For example, I never knew I’d teach myself how to cut my family’s hair, (that’s $20 a head, I’m saving just for the boys!) or that I had a built-in “mom ‘o’ meter” and that I could predict my kids exact fever temperature just by feeling their heads with my lips. I didn’t know I was capable of so much as a mama. Some things I had to unlearn and then re-learn a different way, so that I could better help my family! I didn’t know I had the courage. But God did. He gave it to me. “God doesn’t call the qualified. He qualifies the called.”

We are ALL capable of so much. What are you interested in? How can you use that to benefit your family or help others?  God has blessed each of us like no other. What inspires you to grow? How can you use that inspiration to take care of your people? The world needs you.

For me, I’m schooled in art. I write and sing, but I also love learning about neuroscience and the immune system. I’m fascinated about the forgotten history of medicine and I’m continually learning about it. I totally love DIY projects, and decorating.  I’ve learned how to use homeopathy, and the healing properties of whole foods and herbs. Refurbishing furniture! I am passionate about deliverance ministry and healing.  I make my own cleaning products and lotions.  I mean, the randomness!!

God doesn’t make mistakes. I once said to God, “Hey God, I’m sorry I’m the jack of all trades. I’m sorry I didn’t just pick one thing and become the master of that. I’m sorry I am all over the place.” And as I sat there in the quiet of my church, I heard the Lord say into my heart: “Do you think I made you this way by mistake? I made you this way on purpose, and all of those things will be used for my GLORY!” I don’t know if I could adequately put into words how amazing that was to hear! What a relief to be free from the lie that I was somehow a failure because I was interested in SO many things and couldn’t just pick one.. that God put those things on my heart for a greater purpose.

So in the busy-ness of your life.. in all the ways you are learning and growing, trust in God’s perfect timing. He is equipping you for more than you know. He will call you when He’s ready for you to use those skills. You don’t have to force it. Keep doing what you love. Make your family a priority along with your faith. God will prompt you and He will put a fire in your heart to use those gifts when you’re called.