Wednesday, January 22, 2014

the here and now.

Every single time I start to feel like maybe, just maybe, that we're starting to settle into a groove, something happens and the carpet is snatched out from under us. Time and time again.

I try to be a glass half full person. I try to see the good in everything. I try really, really hard to tell myself that God doesn't give us more than we can handle. But that girl is tired. Really, really tired.

It took us five years to have Ella. In that time we lost four pregnancies. I had multiple procedures and surgeries in order to have a successful pregnancy. It was exhausting. But in the end, it was worth it. However, many, many times I just wanted to sob "why?!". Why was it so easy for some to get pregnant and have a baby and why was it so dang hard for us??

When we finally had Ella, we were in a good place. We had a home. We had two good jobs. Our marriage was solid after the trials of the past few years. In a way, it was good that we had all that time to prepare for her. I felt like we were at a place where we would be able to give her the world. Where we would be able to easily provide everything she needed and quite a bit that she wanted. Things were good.

Then things changed. The job was gone. The house was gone. We moved hours away to a town where we knew nobody. We struggled a bit and it took us a while to find our feet but we eventually did.

We fell in love with that town. We made really good friends. We worked to build things back up in our accounts and life in general. Ella thrived in a school that she loved. She made her first real best friend. Life was good.

And then things changed. Again.

We found ourselves knocked back down a bit as we took what felt like another step backwards. As we licked our wounds and said goodbye to dear friends, E's school, a home we adored, a church we loved, and a town we loved. We packed everyone up and moved 3 hours east to pick ourselves back up again.

It took a while again. It took a good bit of struggle. I spent a lot of time battling feelings of jealousy as I watched young families around me seem to thrive while I felt like we were barely hanging on. I struggled with a lack of contentment as I wondered why we seemed to have so dang little and why that little seemed to constantly be taken from us.

After a while things got better. We ended up moving again six months ago into a situation that we should have stayed far, far away from. Hindsight is 20/20 though right? Now? Another huge change is upon us. Another devastating change. And I am flat out exhausted.

I feel like I'm constantly waiting for life to start. Which is crazy because I'm 31 years old. I feel like it should be settled by now. That we should be settled by now. And we are so far from that it's not even funny.

We had just started thinking of a second kid and now I feel like it's definitely not the right time. We had just started getting ahead and now... I am so tired.

I am mentally, physically, and spiritually exhausted. I know that there's a "plan" here but I'm having a really hard time holding on to that hope. A really hard time keeping the faith. I am so tired of struggling. I'm so tired of worrying.

The here and now is exhausting. As it is far, far too often. I'm a bit tired of every road being so dang hard to travel.

So if you could spare a prayer, we could really use it. I don't even know if this makes sense. But there it is.

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Santa Visit: 2013

Yes. This is late. Moving on.

In November, Mr. P, BG, and I picked an afternoon before Thanksgiving to do a little Christmas shopping. The mall wasn't very busy because it wasn't even Thanksgiving so we ambled on down to the center of the mall. We popped into a Hallmark store where the little and I made a quick exit after she bull in a china shopped it a bit too much.

While we were hanging around outside the shop waiting on Mr. P, BG quickly locked eyes on Santa's Village. I figured he wasn't even there yet so the three of us walked over there.

He was there. And Baby Girl's eyes lit up immediately.

She wanted her picture taken. Bad. She kept talking about how she wanted to talk to him and was so dang excited.

She wasn't dressed for it. In typical Megan style, I had the perfect dress for the occasion already hanging in her closet. But she was so excited.

So we headed on over. And BG loved it. She rattled off that she wanted "three polar bears and three lions" and then sat up there gabbing his ear off. Being as how we were super early, he had the time to chit chat with her a bit and she loved it.

Of course I bought the pictures with the disclaimer to my husband that we would be back in her dress and would be buying more. But he already knew that.

Last Christmas BG saw Santa sick as a dog and we never made it back for her to have a visit she enjoyed. This year? I vowed not to let my lack of preparations dampen her joy. So I didn't. And I'm so glad I didn't. I mean look at this picture. Pure joy.

Santa picture win.

Monday, January 6, 2014

2014: a few goals

I'm really bad at resolutions. Really bad.

But there are a few areas of my life that need some focus and my goal for 2014 is to work on those. So goals for 2014 it is.

1: spend more time in the Word. Spend more time with God.
We haven't found a church we love here yet. We've been watching our old church online but I know it's important to find a church home. Plus it's really important to me that BG attend church weekly from a young age. And she likes church. So we need to find one.

I also need to add time with Him in in my day. I can't remember the last time I had a daily quiet time. I don't promise it will always happen in the morning, but the goal is to spend at least 10-15 minutes daily reading and studying my Bible.

2: my health.
I'm 31. Things are starting to ache and fall apart. This year I plan on taking care of me. Not ignoring my aches and pains because I'm too busy with everyone else. I need to not ignore when I start squinting or my back starts hurting (I swear I'm not 80).

Along those lines: fitness and weight. Yes, yes total cliche resolution. But I've let myself go lately. I'm in the car 80% of the time and I eat just as bad, if not worse, than I always have. You do the math. I've put on weight since I moved here (more on that later) but I want to get healthy. No number in mind, just back to a place where I feel good. I want to get back to the gym. Back to running.

3: time management. I SUCK at this. My mornings are a disaster because I sleep too late, I'm playing when I should be focusing on family; it's no bueno. So this year, I'm going to work on getting up earlier. Working when I'm supposed to be working and focusing on my family come 5 o' clock. I'm tired of always feeling drained. If I spent my time wisely, I wouldn't always feel this scattered and behind.

4: relationships.
It's time to focus on the ones that matter and drop the ones that don't. The friendships that drag me down need to go. The friendships that build me up deserve more time and attention. I want to send more birthday cards. More little random notes. Make more phone calls.

A new year is a new slate. It's like the Megan of 2013 is gone and here is the Megan of 2014. And this new Megan, she's got some work to do. Let's do this.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

2013: a look back

Another year comes to a close.

I just sat here and looked back at 2012's recap and I had to laugh. As last year drew to a close, we faced lots of up in the airness of what we were supposed to do next and where we were supposed to go. The year ended much like 2011 in that respect and as 2013 began, I prayed that it would be a year with a few more answers and a few less questions. Yet somehow I sit here and that's not the case.

Instead, it ends much like previous years. With so much in the air, a lot of discontentment in areas, and very few answers. Perhaps we'll figure it out in 2014? Or perhaps this is what is meant for us right now. Perhaps we are still supposed to be leaning on God and waiting on His discernment for what is next.

As it was, 2013 was filled with so, so much good. Were there tough times? Absolutely. But we end 2013 in a good place. We are all happy. We are all healthy. We are all loved. And that's really what matters no?

I didn't blog much in 2013. I plan to blog more next year but don't want to put any expectations out there as I don't know how much I'll be able to escape here. I do know that I was sad to see that I wouldn't have much to recap from the blog as the blog didn't really recap much of our life this past year. I really hope to rectify that.

So here's a quick look back. So much that didn't even make it to the blog. But even if it didn't get blogged, life did get lived. And we did it good.

We started the year in Maryland with family. We finally received a diagnosis of asthma for the little after battling breathing issues for years. We started falling a bit in love with life in Florence. We celebrated my Papa's 80th birthday with a shindig down in Savannah. We spent quality time in Savannah with family and best friends. We switched BG to a toddler bed and it didn't even phase her. BG started earning her own "allowance".

I started the month by quitting my job at the bank. I started a new job and quickly headed to Charlotte for training which meant missing BG's school Valentine's Day party. I dealt with the guilt of being a working Mom. We still rocked Valentine's Day. Mr. P and BG attended their first father/daughter dance. We took the little to the circus for the first time. Our little family had a rough patch while we adjusted to new jobs, a new home, and a new, terrible attitude from our almost three year old. We made the decision for BG to switch schools. We had a big 'ol snow day in Flo-town. BG continued to grow and change far too much for this Mama's liking.

We enjoyed the perks of living closer to family, like fun afternoons with sweet AK. I talked about learning my limits and "mom guilt". My bestie and her boyfriend came to town and we jaunted over to the beach for a day. We headed home for St. Patty's Day with our best friends. I got a promotion at work. We attempted the Easter Bunny visit but BG was having NONE of it. We attended a big Easter egg hunt here in town and then headed over to BG's first "street fair". We celebrated Easter with family at home in Florence.

I dealt with the emotions of my girl turning three. BG turned three. We celebrated the day by taking the little to Chuck E' Cheese for the first time. We celebrated with friends and family at a party fit for a Princess. BG and I traveled down to Charleston to pick up my bridesmaid's dress for the little brother's big day. We all met up with the little brother and his family for a big zoo trip. AK came and spent a Sunday with us in which we somehow made it to church earlier than we ever do with just one kid. BG was deemed "emotionally ready" and to have "advanced maturity" for her age and was moved ahead in school; up to the 3K class months early.

We traveled down to Anderson and then up to Charlotte in one weekend to celebrate the 3rd birthday of BG's best friend and the 30th of mine. We battled lots of issues with BG's asthma and spent a ton of time in Columbia at her specialist. I attended "Muffins with Mom" at BG's school for the first time. I worked lots of very, very long hours getting ready for our biggest work event of the year. We traveled down to Myrtle Beach for my brother and sister in law's big vow renewal. Mr. P and I celebrated eight years of marriage. We celebrated Mr. P's 36th (!) birthday. We spent a fun weekend in Savannah celebrating birthdays and hanging out with friends and family. My kid got even cooler after turning three. BG finished another school year.

We headed back down to Myrtle Beach to celebrate our sweet niece's first birthday. BG started the summer session at school. I traveled back home to play in my high school's alumni soccer game. Mr. P took a new job and I took a change in jobs that would (quickly) move us to Charlotte. We celebrated Father's Day quietly in the middle of preparing for the big move. We tried to pack tons of summer fun in around packing boxes. BG attended her last day at her school in Florence and said goodbye to her sweet friends. It broke my heart. We found a new house in our new town. BG went back to the beach to spend a few days with her aunt and uncle and cousin while we tried to get settled in the new town. We moved BG to a big girl bed and she didn't bat an eye. The little started her new school.

We celebrated the Fourth quietly with friends. We made our first trip to Ikea. We scurried outside to play any time there was a break in the clouds during the wettest summer ever. We struggled with sass from the little one big time. I continued working one day a week in Florence and meeting up with my faves for lunch as often as I could. We took the little to get her haircut but she backed out at the last minute and got her second tiny trim. We spent a lot of time hanging out with friends at the pool and anywhere outside with cold beer. We saw Train and The Script in concert and it was awesome.

I waxed poetic about the day that changed our lives forever. I struggled big time with all the changes of the summer and my work/life/home balance; or lack there-of. The summer was a blur of work and trying to find our "niche" here in Charlotte. BG started k-3 at her new school. We signed the munchkin up for dance and soccer. I got a new car!

The brother and sister-in-law came down with AK for the weekend. We adults ventured out to the Allman Brothers concert in town. I shared the lighter side of my job. BG started soccer. We traveled down to Charleston to meet Mr. P's best friend's new addition. I turned 31. BG started ballet. We attended our first NFL game; Panthers vs. Giants and BG has an absolute blast!

We headed down to Savannah for a weekend with friends and family. I fell and spent a few weeks in a sling for a hurt shoulder; good times. We headed to Florence to go the the fair with S, K, and AK. We attended all kinds of fun, fall activities; festivals, pumpkin patches, Oktoberfest. BG thrived in her new school. We headed to the beach for Uncle S's surprise birthday party and a weekend away. We carved pumpkins. We celebrated Halloween and BG was the prettiest fairy you ever did see.

We chugged along with a lot of work, a bit of stress, and a lot of laughs usually courtesy of our crazy kiddo. We switched rooms around and made BG her own playroom. We continued ballet on Saturday mornings. I talked about what makes us "us". My Dad came to visit and check out Charlotte. BG had her first friend spend the night. We took family pictures. We met up with Rachel and met sweet M for the first time. BG spotted Santa in the mall and had to go speak with him so we got that checked off early. We celebrated Thanksgiving with family in Florence. BG and I went to see Frozen and she fell in love. We decorated for Christmas the minute Thanksgiving passed.

I traveled down to Augusta to see a dear friend get married. BG's elf, Betsy, arrived for the first time. Work overwhelmed me more than anything ever has before. We attended our town's annual Christmas parade. We went to Christmasville here in town and the kiddos had a blast. BG enjoyed dressing up in her "25 Days of Christmas" outfits (ok that may have just been me). I attended the Charlotte blogger ornament exchange and got to meet some awesome ladies. BG and I traveled down to Florence for her sweet friend's third birthday. I traveled to Atlanta for my best friend's bachelorette party. We looked for Christmas lights multiple times. We celebrated Christmas at home just the three of us. We traveled down to Savannah for Christmas with family and dear friends. We came back to start the New Year quietly at home just the three of us.

2013 was a doozy. I pray 2014 brings about joy and contentment that was lacking this past year. Here's to hoping. Happy 2014 folks! Bring it on!


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