Special Moments

Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice! Philippians 4:4.

I have to start off by saying, I am tired. Like the kind of tired you are after having a brand new baby. Total and complete exhaustion. Why you may ask? Well, since March when Covid changed our world completely I have been forced to wear many new hats on top of the ones that were already placed firmly on my head. Not only do I attempt to keep up with my writing, but I also have roles of mother, wife, housekeeper, laundry maid, chef, taxi driver, dog-sitter, dog walker, babysitter, and my new role of a teacher. Did I leave anything out? Yes!! I forgot I am also now a wedding planner after the recent engagement of my oldest daughter Taylor. So you see my to-do list is endless, and the days never seem long enough to get everything done. By the time I climb into bed at night I feel like I have run the New York City Marathon!! (For the record, I hate running, LOL). I would guess that I am not the only one that could use a really long relaxing vacation. With all the craziness in the world right now and the hectic schedules we all tackle everyday, it is totally expected that each of us would be at the end of our rope. However, even when we feel like we do not have the stamina to get out of bed each day, we still owe it to ourselves and our families to not let our hectic schedules rob us of the special moments that are present in our lives.

This past weekend I went with my newly engaged daughter to tour some wedding venues and go wedding dress shopping. This was most definitely a special moment!! Touring the venues and listening to my daughter talk about her dream wedding and what it will look like was so incredible. All ladies know that those dreams begin to take shape in our heads from the time we are little girls. Not sure why God designed us this way, but he did. Every little girl dreams of her wedding day. Taylor smiled from ear to ear as she discussed her vision and it was such a special moment to watch my daughter begin to bring her dream to life. Then came the wedding dress shopping. Oh my, let me shout to all the mothers out there, this was AWESOME!! With that being said, though, it was also absolutley gut-wrenching at the same time. Yes, it is such a mixed bag of emotions for mothers. Helping my daughter pick out a dress that she will become a wife in was one of the most special moments in my life. The moment I saw her walk out of the dressing room in a wedding dress took my breath away. The only thing I saw was that little girl with pig-tails and I felt like she was playing dress up. This could not be my baby. I cried a little it was so surreal. Then I decided that I was going to be brave. For the rest of the appointment I remained stoic. No more tears. I was determined not to shed another tear. I smiled and laughed and took in every moment. Then the moment came that she found the “ONE”. I knew she had based on the smile on her face and the tears that began. She asked to try on a veil. As soon as they placed that on her pretty head, this stoic mom lost it. The tears starting pouring out and would not stop. My baby is officialy a bride! Yes, it was a little hard. It is hard to know that very soon her care will be placed in the hand of another, but I also during this special moment rejoiced!! How blessed am I that I am here, healthy, and able to experience this special time with my daughter.

Was I tired this weekend as I shopped and toured with my daughter? Absolutely!! I am still beyond exhausted. However, I was not going to let anything rob me of these memories. The world and life can take away so much from us. The crazy schedule of our everyday lives can rip us away from joy in moments that we may never get back. I can give into the exhaustion, or I can choose not to let anything steal my joy. Mothers, our kids grow so fast. Do not take any moment for granted. Yes, I know you are tired. I know, especially during these times, life is just plain hard. Make the decision today to choose joy. Rejoice in the special moments in life. Do not let life pass you by. Take a deep breath and sing songs of joy and praise.

I pray each of you are covered with many blessings today and choose to REJOICE!!

Love and hugs,

Jennifer

A Love Story

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 1 Corinthians 13: 4-8.

This past weekend was magical for my family. My oldest daughter, Taylor, became engaged!! This is a moment that she has dreamed of her whole life. From the time I can remember she has always wanted get married and have babies. She loved being the mommy to her baby dolls when she was a little girl and always talked about what her wedding would look like. I will admit even though the engagement led to a day of celebration it also was a little gut-wrenching for me. Not because I wasn’t happy, but because it was just another step closer of her truly being on her own, and not so much in the safety of my arms. Yes, I will always protect her and be there for her, but she is no longer just all mine. Shew, that’s tough for this mom. It is all so bittersweet. It is hard to watch our kids grow up, but at the same time it is an honor to be able to witness these precious moments with them. When I saw her face and the happiness that radiated from it, my heart smiled. My girl was getting her dream, and the prayers that I have prayed for her were coming true.

To understand the importance of these answered prayers for me, I think I need to explain a little bit about Taylor, and her now love story. It will give a little insight on what a celebration this is for her and us. It will also show that in the end, Love Always Wins.

Since Taylor was a little one, she has been very shy and plagued with insecurities. She never really seemed to feel comfortable in her own skin. As a parent, we all always worried and questioned what we had done to cause such issues? Was it hereditary? I, myself have these issues as well. She suffered so much and was even diagnosed with anorexia when she was just in 5th grade. Yes, so young. For years she was riddled with anxiety, depression, and suffering from an eating disorder. She went to therapy, but it did not help that she was severely bullied in school, and even by those who claimed to be her friend. Because of this, as she got older, she chose bad relationship after another. She would settle far from what she deserved. The relationships were abusive and unhealthy and did not help with the inner fight that Taylor was struggling with. 

Year after year I would pray for Taylor to wake up and not have to fight anymore. That God would take the burdens that were on the inside away. That she would look in the mirror and see the beautiful person she was inside and out. I prayed for her to find good friends, and a boyfriend that would ease her troubles, not worsen them. I would say specific prayers to God that he would remove all that was negative. I asked God to place someone in Taylor’s life that would bring light, hope, understanding, patience, and unconditional love. I prayed someone would take her burdens and heal them, and if they couldn’t that would help carry them on their shoulders too just because they loved her.

Last August after the ending of a very bad relationship, Taylor met Clay. After just a few dates, I noticed a change in Taylor. Her eyes looked different. I saw life in them again. She had a genuine smile on her face that I had not seen in a long time. Her shoulders were back and her head was up. She actually seemed to have some confidence. My husband and I both commented that she seemed to be a new person. You see Taylor became a new person. She had someone in her life who didn’t judge her for her insecurities, but held her and protected her when she needed it. He also makes sure to tell her how beautiful she is, and loves her for her. Clay also respects us and loves his family fiercely. Which I respect very much.

Clay came to my husband and I and asked permission to marry Taylor. After the normal back and forth questions I told him my most important thing was for him to protect her heart. With tears in his eyes he looked at me and said “I always will”. At that point my heart knew that Taylor would be in good hands.

So, you see, it is so important to pray for our children. To speak life over them, to pray for their future and even future spouses. Prayers do work. God will take care of our children, even when as a parent it does not seem like it. With God all things are possible. My sweet little insecure baby, has found a very happy ending in her love story with Clay. What a blessing in all of our lives, and I give God the glory in making a broken girl whole again.

Two are better than one, because they have good return for their labor: If either of them falls down, one can help the other up. Ecclesiastes 4:9-10.

God thank you so much for my blessings. I pray each of you are covered with many blessings today.

Love and hugs,

Jennifer