Parenting a Medically Fragile Child

What does it mean to be the parent of a medically fragile child? It means having a closet full of medical supplies. It means having a shelf full of medical machines beside your child’s bed. It means owning a pulse ox (measures oxygen levels) and knowing what good, mediocre, and bad levels are. It means having a stethoscope and despite never going to med school knowing how to check a heartrate and check for good lung sounds.

It means having the insurance number saved in your phone. It means knowing more about your insurance benefits than most of their reps. It means knowing that if the doctor puts “bi-pap” in their notes instead of “trilogy machine” and your child doesn’t weigh 60lbs insurance won’t approve it. It means knowing what DME, co-pays versus co-insurance, rehabilitative versus habilitative and other terms mean. It means spending countless hours on the phone on hold with doctors offices, medical suppliers, and insurance. It means fighting for your child’s best interest, daily. It means owning a million braces for all different kinds of things. It means fighting to get equipment like a stander, special seating chairs, potty chairs, bath chairs, lifts, etc. It means owning your own medical masks for your child to use in public. It means changing plans just because the cold is going around. It means your day changing in a matter of seconds. It means when that child gets that “little” bug going around it hits out of nowhere. It means packing hospital suitcases, just in case.

It means making a back up plan for all your other kids and plans for the next day. It means enormous guilt at the thought of possibly “abandoning” them once again because you can’t be in 2 places at once. It means rushing around after they’re all in bed to get laundry all done, the dishes done and the house cleaned because you may be gone for a week or more. It means having an “Emergency Hospital Bag”.

It means throwing all your chargers, books, tablets, etc. in a bag to be prepared. It means taking 30 minutes every 4 hours to use all those machines on your child trying to keep them out of the hospital. It means setting alarms for every 4 hours to do them even overnight.

It means cleaning up the flood in the bathroom that happened while you were doing that because your other kids were unsupervised in the tooth brushing routine. It means sleeping in your child’s room with them and waking up every 5 minutes just to check on them. It means you aren’t sleeping in your own bed until they are better.

It means that the reality of your morality and that of your child’s is always present. It means you’ve thought about what life would look like without your child in it. It means that your life looks nothing like you planned. It means letting go of all of your “preconceived ideas” about your child’s future and your future. And despite all of that being hard, and tiring, and overwhelming, it means that you are blessed. Blessed to learn to let God be in control. Blessed to meet so many strong, amazing people. Blessed to have learned how to appreciate the moment, to stop and enjoy the little moments. Blessed to have that child to care for. Blessed to have that insurance and those doctors and braces and machines. Blessed to have those friends to help care for your other children. Blessed to have your eyes opened to all the many, many blessings you have in your daily life. Blessed to see God work in so many ways. What it means to be a parent to a medically fragile child is to be blessed beyond measure.

He shall receive the blessing from the Lord , and righteousness from the God of his salvation.
Psalms 24:5

Tired but Blessed

As we head towards the close out of another year, I think we all take a moment to pause and reflect. Think about the year and the ups and downs, the moments that made us laugh and ones that made us cry, the lessons we’ve learned, things we regret, and the milestones reached. The biggest milestone for us this year is the fact that Trevor has not had a hospital stay in 2019! This seems like a silly thing to be celebrating but when you’ve had 5 stays between May of 2017-Nov. of 2018, it’s a big deal. It’s something that before I had a special needs child, I never would have even considered much less celebrated. It was something I took for granted. I saw a post last week of a family whose newborn went down for a nap and she found him later not breathing. In her post she said something like, “this is something that happens to other people, not me.” I remember having that same thought when Trevor was diagnosed so I can totally sympathize with that feeling. Then another thought hit me. I still sort of have this mentality except now it’s more of a false sense of security with my other kids. They are not medically fragile and I’ve already faced the fear of losing a child so God wouldn’t require that of me with another child right? The more I thought about it the more I thought how wrong that mentality is. Job lost all his children in one day. I’ve had friends with healthy children that got an infection this year and ended up in the hospital for weeks, touch and go. I’ve heard stories of babies not waking up from naps this year. My grandfather fell and passed away a week later this year. You just never know what will happen or when. You never know how long each special person in your life will be there. Having a special needs child has opened my eyes to appreciating the day to day more and not taking things for granted and yet, I still have much work to do in this area. Do I enjoy my 2 year old asking to read a book or sit on my lap for the 100th time in a day or do I tell her no cause I want my space? Do I take advantage of the times my 6 year old is melting down over something little and actually wants to cuddle or just tell her it’s not that big of deal? Do I enjoy the times my 7 going on 17 year old actually wants to talk to me or do I just tell her not to be so dramatic? Do I choose the seat beside my husband at social gatherings for that extra time together or do I sit somewhere else and spend 5 extra minutes on my phone? Do I see every day as a blessing of time spent together or do I just get frustrated that I have 4-5 people that need me constantly for something all day long? My view of each of these things make a huge difference to how I deal with them and how I walk away from each day. Will I be tired and frustrated or tired but aware of how incredibly blessed I am that the Lord gave me these people to love, serve, and have invading my space for another day. So as we head in to 2020, may we all resolve to focus more on the blessings, to not take for granted each day we have with the ones we love. To be thankful for the dirty dishes, the 500 million “moms” a day, the not being able to go to the bathroom without someone coming in or knocking on the door 10 times. Lord, help me to be thankful in all things and not take one day for granted.

In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.
1 Thessalonians 5:18

The Undeserved Present

Yesterday was a rough day. By noon, all 4 of my kids had had a meltdown over something. After my oldest had calmed down some from her’s, we sat down to talk about it. At one point in the conversation, she told me that I should just burn all her presents because she didn’t deserve them. (Earlier this week someone had asked the kids if they were being good for Santa. They responded that Santa wasn’t real and the person said she had a friend that threw her kids presents in the fire when they were bad.) I told her I wasn’t going to do that because I hadn’t bought her presents because she deserved them. I bought them because I loved her. My love is not contingent on her behavior. It hit me then and I shared this with her as well. That’s just like Christ. He doesn’t offer us salvation because we deserve it. If we’re being honest, every single one of us deserves to have our gifts “thrown in a fire” or taken away from us. We deserve death, yet as his children, we are given blessings and promises of amazing things to come. Praise the Lord, God’s love is not based off how we behave or even how we treat Him as our Heavenly Father. He loves us despite all of that. I don’t know why I haven’t made this connection before. Maybe instead of threatening our children continually with returning their gifts or giving them away this Christmas, we should instead be using those moments to teach them. Teach them that real love is unconditional. Show them what Christ’s love looks like. Point out to them how love gives, not based on what is deserved or earned, but solely because of that love. Remind yourselves this year of just how much Christ loves you and just how little we truly deserve His good gifts and be thankful.

Thanks be unto God for his unspeakable gift.
2 Corinthians 9:15

Just Breathe


I was talking with a mom friend yesterday morning. We were discussing how it seemed like our kids couldn’t even say hi to each other without ending up in an argument and how they drove us to lose it. And then how the guilt would set in over not having enough patience with them. And how we always planned to do better the next day, until the cycle started all over again. I try, I really do. To not let them hit the last nerve. To stay even keel and talk in the same voice, at the same volume, consistently. I try but, boy, do I fail. Every day. In spectacular fashion. I was thinking about this off and on yesterday, like when my kids were sitting right beside each other in the van (there are 3 rows of seats available to them and they choose RIGHT BESIDE EACH OTHER) and fighting the whole way home. I thought about it when I told them 5x to get their shoes on and NOBODY listened. I thought about it when my handicap son had to pee really badly 2 seconds after we left the house and I’d asked him 5 minutes before if he did. I thought about it when my 2 year old dumped the PJ Mask toys I’d just made her clean up (those toys were still on the floor last night when I put them all to bed). I thought about it when that same 2 year old colored on a wall (her newest, favorite pastime. I think she enjoys scrubbing them.) Then last night, one of my talented friends gave me a gift. It is a poem my brother wrote for me last year during a 2 week hospital stay for Trevor, that she put on a sign. The poem is titled “Breathe”. As I read that poem again, the last phrase hit me as the solution to what I was thinking about all day. It says, “Good or bad, light or dark, what more can I say, it doesn’t hurt to use that breath to pray.” We all have those moments. Those times where the kids “push us” to snap. Times where all your nerves are raw and frayed and you lose your cool. That doesn’t make you a bad parent. It makes you human. As a coach, I tell my team often “it’s ok to make mistakes. Everyone does. It’s moving on and trying your best to improve that matters.” The same applies to parenting. There is no perfect parent. It’s a huge responsibility. It’s scary when you think about how much you are responsible for. That weight can be overwhelming. In those moments, just breathe. Breathe AND pray. Pray for yourself to have the patience you need. Pray for your kids to learn to be sweet and obedient. Pray that you will all continue to learn how to control your reactions to all those emotions flowing through you. If you lost it, take a breath, cut yourself some slack, and pray. Pray that the next time you’re in those moments you will remember to stop and breathe BEFORE you lose it. You are not alone in this. God is with you. He is our greatest “parenting resource”.

Taking a moment to breathe after putting the kids in bed before cleaning up all the PJ Mask toys all over the floor in the background. You know you’re a mom when you’re photo bombed by your messy house.

“I am not” Mom

Warning: open, blatant, transparency to follow. I am a mom. I am a mom who messes up. Often. I am a mom who often feels defeated or like I am a complete failure. I am not a crafty mom. I draw my kids stick figures when they ask me to make a person. I don’t own a cricut or stamp sets. I don’t know how to cut out vinyl and make cute, matching, personalized shirts. I don’t LOVE Hobby Lobby! (I’ve probably just alienated half of my friends with that statement. I see that place as a maze of glass and delicate things that can be destroyed by my unruly crew or my klutzy self. It’s a death trap, people!) I do not have an eye for decorating. I have some pictures on my wall. They haven’t been changed out in 4 years. The frames aren’t all matching or the same size. They aren’t all evenly spaced and completely level and hung with command strips to avoid wall damage. Actually there are probably about 3 holes behind each picture because I never measure or mark either. They are also dusty, very dusty. My mom dusts and cleans the house every Friday. Other people have a day for the bathrooms and kitchen and one for the bedrooms and living room each week. I am not a great housekeeper. I walk into a bathroom and if we aren’t growing things in the toilet bowl, we’re doing good. My house cleaning “schedule” is more like, I can’t remember the last time I cleaned so I probably should do that or else I am very angry about something and cleaning is my outlet. My husband has joked before that he’ll have to make me mad so the house will get cleaned. I’m no better with laundry. I may be worse. I tried to establish Monday as my laundry day but actually it’s more like 1-2 loads Monday, I remember the load in the washer Tuesday and re-wash it, then re-wash it again Wednesday. It’s usually all washed by Thursday but folded and put away. That’s a whole different story. I am not a musician. I don’t enjoy sitting down at the piano or strumming a guitar or playing any other instrument. I am not a fabulous hair dresser. I can’t cut, trim, or color hair. I’m doing good if I remember to brush my hair most days. I am not that mom that manages to work out everyday and look amazing after 4 kids and I have the extra fluff to prove it. I am not the pinterest mom who makes wonderful desserts and healthy dishes daily and throws amazing birthday parties for her kids every year. In fact I told a friend just the other day, I feel like when I throw a party, I’m the Dollar Tree version as opposed to the Pintrest/Target brand. I am not the mom that comes up with cool activities and learning experiences for her kids. We don’t have sensory bins or learning centers or theme days. I can’t sew or crochet. I am not an entrepreneur. I am not a fashion blogger or instagrammer. I don’t have some awesome hobby that I am super talented at that I can make money as a stay at home mom to support my family. I am not a mom that never loses her cool. I am not a mom that never makes a mistake. There is something else though. I am not alone. There are other moms out there that feel this way. That have their own list of “I am not…” that goes on and on. Why are we moms so hard on ourselves? Why do we focus on all the things we can’t do well. All the things we aren’t good at? When my daughter starts getting down on herself, I always tell her to say these things. “Satan is lying to me. God loves me. I am ‘fearfully and wonderfully made'”(Ps. 139:14). These are things I need to remember myself of as well, it seems. Things we all need reminded of. Satan would love nothing more than to distract you, Momma. You are the front line in these precious babies’ lives. You are who they look to as an example. You are with them the most and have the most teachable moments available to you. You are the ones that “train them up” (Pr. 22:6) day in and day out. That is a huge responsibility. One that can overwhelm and fall into our I can’t category very easily. That’s exactly how Satan wins. He defeats us in our minds. To the point we just give up. I know I certainly have my days where I am ready to throw in the towel. I’m ready to say sure you can sit in front of the tv and watch whatever you want. Go ahead and be mean and nasty to your sister. Attitude because you had to put away 3 dishes and “do everything around here”? Whatever. We can’t give up! We cannot throw in that towel! There is too much at stake. Sweet, precious, amazing creations of God. He entrusted them to you for a reason. Because He will equip you. All the “I am nots” in the world can’t compare to “I AM God’s”. So to all the soccer mom’s who just don’t think they can fit in one more thing. To all the stay at home moms who finally managed to shower and put on real clothes by dinnertime. To all the working moms who are driving home, exhausted at 5, and are still facing dinner, homework, and bedtime. To the moms of teenagers who can’t take one more argument. To the moms with 3 kids under 3 rocking the ode de spit up. To ALL the moms feeling defeated and like a complete failure. Get your focus off of those negatives and remember, “if God be for us, who can be against us.” (Rms. 8:31)

I will praise thee; for I am fearfully and wonderfully made: marvellous are thy works; and that my soul knoweth right well.
Psalms 139:14
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
Proverbs 22:6
What shall we then say to these things? If God be for us, who can be against us?
Romans 8:31

Life’s Obstacle Course

We went to a family reunion yesterday. When it came time for games for the kids, I rounded mine all up and we went over to listen to instructions. It was an obstacle course. Once the instructions were given and they were told they could go, I picked my son Trevor up out of his wheelchair and off we went. I helped him “crawl” under the pool noodle, then we jumped over the next. Then I stopped and helped Lauretta jump over as well. We moved on to the golf balls. I showed Luci what to do and gave Lauretta a small golf club to use then got ours and started putting. As I was hitting the third out of six balls in, Trevor said “this is easy”. I laughed and while I didn’t actually say so, I thought yep, carrying 43lbs of dead weight in one hand and trying to putt a golf ball with the other is a piece of cake. Next was tossing a frisbee through hula hoops, a hopscotch type jump, and then bean bag toss into different buckets worth one-six points. I sat down with Trevor and we started tossing. Lorreign was struggling and getting frustrated at this point so I kept helping Trevor toss while talking to Lorreign and calming her down and encouraging her to be patient and not give up. She got hers in and moved on. Trevor finally got his in as well. The last obstacle was bouncing a ping pong ball off a tennis racket into a cup. At this point, my husband was helping with Trevor as well. He held him, I helped him with the racket, and one of my cousins held the cup and moved it to catch the ball. As I thought about that later, it hit me how applicable this is to the obstacle course that is our lives. We are like Trevor and God is the parent helping us through. He helps us crawl through the valleys and climb over the mountains. He holds us with one hand and guides our lives with the other, if we let Him. We often think life is moving pretty well. Things seem pretty easy right now. We may come to a time where we are frustrated and feel like we’re never going to get past something. That some obstacle is just too hard or too big and we’ll never accomplish that goal. God is there to encourage us. To say “Take a breath. Calm down. You’ve got this because you have Me. I’m right here, supporting you. Helping you. You can do all things through Me.” There are also the times in life that are so hard not only is God holding us but He sends others into our lives to help “move the cup” for us. That help may come from a friend, a family member, a co-worker, or a complete stranger. We may not realize it in the moment or maybe at all but our “easiest” moments come from God’s hand in our life. He is who carries us through. Without Him, we would never make it through. When life seems smooth or easy, don’t forget Who’s holding you and making it that way. He carries us, He helps us, calms us, encourages us, and sends others to help us along the way.

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.
Philippians 4:13

One of Those Days

Have you ever been talking to another mom and asked her how things are going and she says, “it’s just been one of those days”? She doesn’t need to explain any further than that, does she? You know, because you’ve been there. You’ve had that day. The day that started off with a child camped out on a blanket bed beside your bed because she has a stomach ache. The day where your alarm clock was your toddler, who just got moved into a toddler bed and can get herself up now. The day where you realize you have an appointment in 2 hours and people are coming over after that to visit and your house is a disaster. You rush to put the clean dishes away out of the dishwasher so you can do the dirty dishes. You’re also trying to take care of the kids, make sure they’re dressed and groomed, get their vitamins, drinks, breakfast (a Rocket Pop counts, right?) and not have them destroy everything you’re trying to clean up.

You are still in your cut off sweats and tank and looking completely presentable, of course, but you still have time. So you grab the basket of laundry that needs folding and ignore the 35 million pressing, urgent needs your kids have for the next 10 minutes so you can finish that. Feeling accomplished you then look at the clock and realize you need to leave in 10 minutes. You rush to get food together for your kids to have during your appointment. (Note to self: 11-12 is probably a bad time to schedule such things.) You yell for the kids to get shoes on as you run to throw on clothes and hope the stretchy pants aka leggings and tank top somehow make you look less disheveled. You tell kids to get in the van only to hear “I don’t have shoes”. You remain calm and tell them to go get some. Then you walk into your clean living room to pick up your handicap son just as the toddler dumps a bin of toys on your clean floor. Well actually on top of the first bin of toys she must have dumped while you were throwing on clothes. No time to deal with that. You rush to the door to see your 6 year old standing there, yelling for the dog she just let run out. She then proceeds to tell you she still can’t find shoes while standing NEXT TO the bin full of shoes. You finally get everyone loaded into the vehicle and run back in to get the electronic device to occupy the kids for the hour you’re busy, grab a box of scooby snacks for them and rush out. Only 5 minutes behind schedule, you are feeling pretty proud until you think of the dog that is still loose running around the neighborhood and realize you forgot the lunch you made for the kids. You make it through the appointment with minimal interruptions and head towards home. You get home and start to work on the pool that has algae growing in it. Get inside and realize that the chlorine splashed on your shirt and your pants and you have now ruined a perfectly good outfit and one of the few shirts you owned that wasn’t stained. Yes, this was me. Today. It’s been one of those days. It’s not the first time and it won’t be the last. That is motherhood. There are some days that go so smoothly. Your kids obey, the house is clean, you are on time to everything and even had time to put makeup on. There are also “those days”. When nothing seems to go right, you feel like one “MOM” away from snapping and it feels like you’ll never survive with your sanity intact. When you have those days remember that you are not alone. There are other moms out there right now having the same kind of day. Remember that it’s not everyday. Remember that it can all be a reminder of blessings in your life. My crazy day means I have children to feed, a house to clean, clothes to have laundry to do AND a washer and dryer to do them in. I have shoes for my kids feet, even if they do need to be told 12 times to get them on. I have a pet to worry about running off. I have insurance to cover those doctor’s appointment and a vehicle to get us there. I have food to make for lunch even if I forget it. We even have special blessings, past the necessities of life, like a pool that needs chlorine. Remember to thank the Lord for the blessings even on “one of those days”. ESPECIALLY on those days.

Who Am I?

I recently told someone that I have no identity other than being a mom. I feel like I’m not Renee anymore, I’m only Mom. When people ask me what my hobbies are I literally just blank. I don’t have hobbies. I don’t have something special I love to do with my down time. Unless cleaning, dishes, and folding laundry count? (Not that I love doing any of those.)
So is this it? Is that my identity now? Mom? A friend of mine asked a similar question yesterday. She said “Do you think God has a purpose for your life outside of motherhood?”. I’ve thought about that question a lot since then. Is cooking, cleaning, laundry, nursemaid, etc all I am to do? Was that what I was designed for? It wasn’t until tonight while putting my sick child to bed that the Lord showed me an answer. My sick baby looked at me so miserable and sweet and said “thank you for taking care of me today”. That’s when it hit me. During His entire time on this earth Jesus was continually showing us by example that we are to serve others. That is my purpose here. To love Him and to show His love to others by being a servant. God has put me in the best possible position to do that. Motherhood. I get the privilage of showing these sweet babies what a blessing it is to serve others. Being a mom has taught me better than anything else could how to put others first. It has made me a better wife. It has made me a better friend. It has made me a better listener cause it has and is teaching me to stop focusing on myself. From now on when people ask me what my hobby is I will strive to always answer with “being a servant”. This is who I am. This is my purpose. To show others God’s love. What better way for me to do that than to serve others as Jesus did?

For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for Jesus' sake.
2 Corinthians 4:5
Not with eyeservice, as menpleasers; but as the servants of Christ, doing the will of God from the heart;
Ephesians 6:6 

Ordinary Days

At the end of each day I usually need a little wind down time, as I believe most moms do. If you’re like me, that typically consists of scrolling through Facebook and Instagram. And, if you’re like me, you find yourself looking at the family at the amusement park. You start thinking how nice it will be when you can go and not have to hand off watching one or two kids with your spouse, cause those kids aren’t tall enough, while the other takes those that can go, on the ride. Or you see the couple with no kids taking advantage of opportunities you and your husband no longer can. Maybe envying the single girl being free to be spontaneous and take wonderful adventures. Seeing moms playing board games or crafting with their kids or grand adventures at the park and thinking, I wish I were a better mom. I find myself looking back at my day filled with fighting, and hearing “mom, mom, mom, mom” all day long, and poop in the bathtub, and scrapes, and spills, and laundry, and wishing I’d had one of those magic, Facebook/Instagram worthy days. Then I have to make myself stop and think. Stop and remember how we all sat and watched a cartoon that morning with two of the kids snuggled on my lap. (Which was actually not the most pleasant with killer sunburn from a few days prior, but sweet nonetheless.) How when a funny moment happened, they all laughed and the two year old said in her sweet, toddler voice “so, so funny” and it melted my heart a little. Stop and think about the moments playing ninja shark attack on the floor with my son. How in that moment he wasn’t disabled, just all boy playing with his mom. Stop and remember how, despite the numerous, daily eye rolls I now receive from my seven, going on seventeen, year old, she still asks if she can do anything to help. Stop and focus on the numerous times my accident prone five year old came to me to fix a boo-boo and remember some day I won’t have that super power anymore. I have to remind myself that waking up to being sandwiched between kids in MY bed means that mommy is their hero when they’re scared in the middle of the night. I have to realize that getting up two to three times a night to roll my disabled son, who isn’t physically able to do it for himself, means that he is healthy and at home. As I look back on my day in this way, it is easier to see that, while quite ordinary in the world of motherhood, it was actually something quite extraordinary and magical. Just as every tear filled, stress inducing, push you to the brink of insanity day of motherhood is. The key is to remember that. To focus on it. As a mom, stop comparing yourself to other’s magical, social media worthy days. Remember instead that their is magic in the ordinary. Those are the days that shape your child’s life. Those are the days you will miss when they get older. Embrace the ordinary because it is actually extraordinary!

One of those ordinary days

When Mom Shaming is Needed

Mom shaming. We hear so much about it, thanks to this wonderful thing called social media. No two people are moms exactly the same way. We all seem to think our way is not only the best way but the ONLY way. That mom wanted to have a natural birth but instead an emergency c-section saved both her life and the babies. How dare she not take more power over her body?! This mom breast feeds but how dare she take breaks at work to pump. Just use formula and while we’re discussing it, why are you working anyway?! You should be with your baby 24/7! Look at that mom! She stays home but gasp she gave up on breastfeeding after 2 weeks of pain and heartache to put herself in a better emotional state. How dare she! That child is front facing at 1! How could they endanger them so?! This one is still rear facing at 6. That kid is in first grade and still can’t see where they are going in the car! I could give example after example of the things about someone else’s life people think it’s acceptable to comment on. Of course, in each example I just gave we all have an opinion. That does not mean we have any right to share it. We have no liberty to make another mom feel guilty for “doing it wrong” just because it’s not how we do it or would (if we had kids). So after saying all this, why the title? Why would I possibly think there are times mom shaming is needed? I’ll tell you why. I screw up. Certain mom moments we should shame ourselves about. I’m not saying give up and decide you are a horrible mother. I’m saying remember there is always room for improvement. For example, I’ve had kids with hand, foot, and mouth for a week now and the whininess is out.of.control! I understand my babies are sick and entitled to a bit extra whine but tonight….tonight, I snapped. I just couldn’t take it anymore and I threw my own temper tantrum to my kids. Twice. To the point my son was apologizing that I couldn’t make him feel better. I’m crying now just thinking about it. This was not a high point for me and I’m ashamed of it. I’m ashamed when I focus more on my phone then on my children. I’m ashamed when I get so caught up in the laundry, dishes, and housecleaning that I don’t take time to hold my babies. I’m ashamed when they ask me to teach them to bake and I say no because I don’t have the “time” or I don’t want to clean up the extra mess. I’m ashamed when I miss my daily devotions because I have so much to do and that’s the example they’re seeing. THESE are the things we should mom shame OURSELVES about. Not because we are all horrible, terrible moms but because we are good ones! And good ones want to improve. Want to be better. Always striving to do better for their family. So when you have one of these moments, as we all do, and your feeling your mom shame, remember a few things. You are not alone. We, moms, are all humans with sin natures. We all mess up. We all have those moments of shame. The fact that we have that shame is in itself proof that you truly are a good mom. Remember this as well, however. We all have a chance to strive to do better next time. And next time. And the time after that. Ask for the forgiveness you need and aim for an improvement each time. Keep striving, momma. There is no such thing as a perfect mom, but there are good ones striving to learn from their mistakes and become better ones. Keep striving.

2 Peter 3:18 - But grow in grace, and [in] the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. To him [be] glory both now and for ever. Amen.