Dear Emmalee/ 3 Months

I can't believe my daughter is already 3 months.
Each months seems like an eternity. Usually, when you are having a good time, time flies; and when you are having a bad time, time seems endless. I'm glad that time has been good to me and time has taken it's time passing by.
Those claiming life with babies is hard play life way to much on easy.
It's a challenge, but one you don't want to miss out on.

The hubs asked me out on a date. It's not that I'm scared of leaving her with someone. It's that I hate being apart from her when I'm at work that I don't want to give up time with her. But, the hubs is more important. You heard me! The hubs is more important.
This is a hard truth to grasp for me. Right now, I live and breathe for my daughter. Oops! maybe I need to add to this argument God is more important than both of them; but He is not being neglected. We've been searching for Him as a family more since Emmalee's birth. The point is I'm more focused on my daughter than on my husband and that is a big no no. The best thing I can do for my daughter's future is nurture my relationship with her father.

Tomorrow is Father's Day so I'll be sure to make something special. I'm thinking candlelight dinner?! I hope Emmalee sleeps early, though, because Grandma will be celebrating Grandpa so I can't leave her with them.

Dear Emmalee,
You are now three months!
Today was the first time you woke up but didn't cry to be fed. You just lay there on your crib making funny noises. When I stood up to check on you, you smiled and continue making your funny noises. That is one marvelous way to begin my day.
You are nursing more efficiently which makes mommy extra happy.
I love how you can tell I'm your mommy because you'll only seek me to nurse from.
You are such a kind little baby. You let everyone carry you and you don't fuss nor cry.
It's such a joy to go out with you because you are so well behaved.
You greet everyone with a big smile, even if you are just meeting them.
You are the apple of your grandfather's eye. Nothing will get you more talkative than seeing your grandfather Rodolfo.
I'm loving making things for you; and now that we have a more settled schedule, I'll be doing alot more.
Although you are so small, you like standing up on your feet (with a little help of course).
Mommy is loving all the new outfits that fit you and you happily let me change you over and over again as I figure out which new outfits fit and which ones don't.
You look so adorable with your little dresses. I can't wait for shoes to finally fit you.
My darling daughter, you fill my days with joy and laughter. I can't remember life without so much love inside of me.
I fear the fact that you are not mine and you are only a loan from God, but I am grateful God chose to give you to me. I will honor this blessing all the days of my life.
Your beauty still stuns me.
You are such a happy baby. Thank you for being you!
I forever love you!


Be gone, fear!

"Being a parent means always being afraid."
I remember saying this and believing it when I first found out I was pregnant (yes, I considered myself a parent since then).
I get angsty when I'm fearful displaying attitudes I'm not fond or proud of.

"How could my mother allowed me to do the things I did?" I ask myself.
Seriously. If I wasn't climbing trees, I was walking on rooftops or walls. If I wasn't playing in the street with my friends all over the neighborhood and even in a forest behind my house that was probably snake infested, I was finding risky games in the house like going up the walls in the aisle like a monkey pressing my arms and legs on both walls til I reached the top! Or how about skating downhill from a street that had occasional cars coming through? Or riding a bike downhill from a mountain standing on the bike's chair! Or my insane habit of trying to pet every dog I encountered even if it was big, scary, and barking at me with it's teeth bare.
If I were my own daughter, I'd give myself a heartattack!

You do end up paying them all don't you?!

I had finally gotten the hang of sleeping without waking every hour to check on Emmalee. This was doing wonders for my marriage and my care of Emmalee. Sleep depravation is the fastest way to become "like the dripping of a leaky roof in a rainstorm." (Prov 27:15). We were finally sleeping. And then, the accident happened...

On saturday we were enjoying a day of home chores. He was helping me with bathe the dogs while I made lunch. Emmalee is happy to sit in her infant chair and watch us for a while, but she'll eventually get bored and ask/demand to be picked up. It was a little windy and the leaves from the yard where blowing into the kitchen so I closed the door. I picked Emmalee to take her to her room and change her diaper. We have to walk what I now know are eleven stairs from the kitchen to her room. Before this day I didn't know how many stairs where in that trayectory. They don't feel like much because they are separated into two sets: one from the kitchen to the living room and one from the living room to the rooms. They have very rounded edges that have made me trip a few times, once while I was eight months pregnant. I had Emmalee with her face against my shoulder with my arm under her tushy holding her up. I didn't even realize when I slipped and went down five stairs down the second set of stairs. I hit my head against the first stair in the set and my elbows hit the others stairs. I sat down immediately to see if Emmalee had been hurt. She was now laying with her face on my lap. I picked her up and she looked at me normally and then she started to cry. I let out a shrieking "RODOLFO!" in a cry for help. I remembered the kitchen door is closed so I ran to open it. I took my sandals off and ran barefooted to the bedroom. Rodolfo ran behind me.
"Grab the baby please, I'm shaking," I said as Emmalee was belting cries.
"I can't! I'm covered in dog hair," said he.
Luckily, his grandmother who lives next door, followed him inside and she grabbed Emmalee while Rodol washed his hands and I tried to calm down.
"She's ok," she says showing us that Emmalee is just fine and has no bumps or signs of trauma. "She probably just got scared. That's all."
My heart is still pounding like a drum but Emmalee starts crying again wanting me to hold her. I do and we both calm down.

She has been fine showing no signs of anything wrong with her, but I've been restless all this days waking  up to check on her hourly.
Is it true that being a parent means always being afraid? To some measure, I think it is for every parent.

I don't remember my mother being a fearful mother, however. Being a single mother, I would think she would have been more attached to her children and afraid, but it wasn't the case.

1 John 4
18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

Ouch! That was right in the face!
I hate being fearful.
I see clearly it make me a women of little faith.
It shows how much way I have to go to truly have a grateful heart.
Not made perfect in love after receiving it in tons by my sweet Jesus?! That's unacceptable.
Anyone wants to give me a KEEP CALM AND TRUST GOD wall art?

please help me change my ways and my heart to that of a woman of faith who rests calmly in Your love.
And, Lord, thanks for letting us get Emmalee's passport for our upcoming trip to Panama :). I'll do my best not to let this trip bring worries to my heart.

Oh, and on a side note, we got non-skid tape for those dangerous stairs!


Becoming a Mommy

The first time daddy felt her kick in the belly he couldn't sleep all night.
The first time I saw her beating heart on the sonogram I cried. Grandma Linda also.
The first thing I said when I saw her for the first time was: "She is so hairy!"
The first thing I thought when I first held her in my arms: "I would give my life for you and you wouldn't even remember me."
The first thing I do when I see her smile is gasp.
The first thing I do when I stare into her eyes is marvel at such beauty.
The first thing I do when a new outfit fits her is call her daddy to show him.
The first thing he does is take a picture of her.
The first thing I do when she wakes up crying for hunger is thank the Lord for giving her life and have her breathing.
The first time I breastfed was the first time I thanked God for having made me a woman and letting me experience that unique conexion with my daughter.
The first time she cried we thought it would never end.
The first thing she does when I change her diaper or her clothes is smile in content,
The first thing she does when she is upset is take off her socks.
The first thing people do when they are holding her and she starts crying is hand her to mommy :)
Being a mommy is filled with many firsts, that much I know.

After Emmalee was born people started asking me how it felt to become a mommy.
I didn't quite know how to answer that question. It wasn't like I felt any different as a person. Becoming a mommy had not made me a different person. The only difference was that I was overflowing with love for a new person. I wondered why, though, I didn't feel any difference I could tell as answer to people's question. Now I know why. I have loved my daughter with all the love I have for her since the day I knew she had been conceived, not the day she was born. The only knew thing that happened that day she was born is that I got to meet her and see her face and tell her how much I love her to her face. A change I could convey to people that has happened to me since my daughter's birth, however, is my greater awe for my God.

Some women think that being a mommy somehow makes them superior to women who aren't mothers. Some women who aren't mothers think that women who are mothers are superior. Some women think that becoming a mother will change them into a new kind of woman; this superior being maybe? Some women think this way about marriage too. Being a married women ups your status and becoming a mommy ups it some more. These misconceptions have women comparing themselves to others, looking down on themselves or looking down on others, and missing out on who they are in Christ.

If you are not a mother or a wife it is in God's plan and God knows why. Being unmarried or without children is not a lower status. Have you stopped and think how much God can use you being a single woman and having God as your only Lord? Have you stopped and think how God can use your marriage to impact others and serve as a couple without children? It is healthy for women to desire marriage and babies. It is unhealthy when you are desiring it to "catch up" or to undergo the "transformation" that marriage and children bring in you. This is a lie. Marriage doesn't change you and neither does motherhood.

If you are unhappy unmarried, you won't become happy married. Same goes for motherhood. If you are not satisfied with the life you have, other people will not be able to change that. If you are not able to give God thanks for the life He has given you today, you will never experience joy and happiness. If this is your case, marriage and motherhood will actually worsen your situation with the toils and duties they're accompanied with.

Women give "status" to so many things.
For me, for example, the status in becoming a mommy was accompanied by the way I became a mommy.
Natural birth was a higher "mommy status" than having a c-section. This was not my thinking in my desire for natural birth. I wanted natural birth because I want many children and c-sections come with warnings and restriccions of number of pregnancies. Also, I wanted the quicker recovery for more quality time with my newborn. However, I felt "inferior" having not been able to bring my child into the world with a natural labour; as if I had failed as a woman and had my baby the way "lazy, comformed" women do. My only comfort was that I had at least tried to have my baby with a normal labour. Again, that unspoken seeking of higher status: "at least I tried unlike those other women who schedule c-sections."
How stupid thinking. And poor men don't even realize that-yes!-this is how alot of women think!

Gratitude is key for everything. God won't give you more reasons to complain. You complain you are unemployed today, you will complain of the great workload tomorrow. If you complain of not having a house today, you will complain of having to clean and upkeep it tomorrow. Maybe you can understand why He hasn't given you a husband or children to complain about.
Don't get me wrong either; just because you have a husband and/or children doesn't mean you don't complain or that you don't suffer from ungratefulness.

Philippians 4:6-7
6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Gratitude is the only way to happiness. You are able to thank God in extraordinary situations like I wrote here. You are able to thank God every single day. If you can't, you need to change your heart, not your life; and marriage and motherhood won't change your heart.

The funny thing is that this "status" thinking is given mainly among christian women. To unbelieving women, marriage and children are a hassle and an obstacle to their career goals and the "me" lifestyle. Christian women tend to scrutinize more: This mother homeschools but this one doesn't. This woman works outside the home and this one doesn't. This one prefers her career than homemaking. This one has a maid and this one tends to her own house alone. This one is into organic, healthy cooking and this one lets her children eat fast food. This one breastfeeds and this one doesn't.
As if the way my daughter was born has any bearing on the kind of mother I'll be. As if breastfeeding guarantees a healthy baby. As if homeschooling guarantees a child that will love and serve the Lord!

We do what we do for love of the Lord and love of our family; not because it makes you a better mother and better wife than other women; not because you want to take "the high road"; not to catch up to the women you compare yourself with; not because your way is a better way than theirs.
This life has taught me this: obey God because His way is good, enjoy where God has you today, give thanks to God for everything everyday, ask Him to guard your heart and mind, and surrender your desires to His will.

 Becoming a mommy just makes me be in awe of how wonderful, creative, impressive, perfect, crafty, designer, and merciful God is! I mean, just look at the great job He did with this little one of His!