Book Review of “In the Middle of the Mess” by Sheila Walsh

I set a goal to read 12 books in the year of 2018. Between my bible studies and books that I have collected, I thought it would be an easy goal. Well it’s September and I just finished my first book of the year! I’m half way done with a handful of books, but then I move on to another. None of the books I have are stories to get lost in. They are all books I hope to learn something from. Parenting, praying, how to be a Godly wife…. so good but I stop my parenting book and pick up my wife book if there’s an argument in my marriage. And that’s why none are finished haha. Anyone else??? 🙋🏻🙋🏻

My mom has gifted me a lot of books. She gets one for her and one for me. This was one of them.

I have seen Sheila Walsh speak at Women of Faith years ago in California with some amazing friends. I did not know her whole story.

This book had me in tears in some chapters and nodding my head, “yes sister, preach!”, in other chapters!

We all have a story. There is mess in ALL of our stories. I have not struggled with mental health issues or suicide. This book had a lot of encouragement for women (and men I’m sure) that deal with that struggle. It’s her struggle so she speaks right to it. She wants others to know they are not alone because she is with them.

She talks about her mom dying. I can’t really ever picture my mom dying. I just want to live in the world where that never happens. But watching my husband just recently loose his dad 7 weeks ago, it brought up some personal tears.

I love how she concluded the book. Encouraging us all to share our stories. If we don’t share our stories, how will we ever be able to comfort someone else in our same shoes? Also by hiding our story and our mess we give power to it. We let it fester inside us and that doesn’t do anyone any good. So let’s band together with our friends and even strangers and share our stories. No one has a perfect story. So there is no shame in your story!

Anyways… totally worth the read. It was 12 chapters. I’m sure some of you could bust that out in a day, but it took me months haha. But I did it! And I’m so glad that I finished this book!

In the Middle of the Mess

By Sheila Walsh

xoxo kymberly

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Grieving a Relationship.

For years I have been grieving this same relationship. And it’s been a very hard process.

The relationship with my dad.

I have written over the past couple years the hurt he has caused me. But a quick summary in case you don’t know the story:

He cheated on my mom many times over their relationship. They started dating when they were 14/15 and got married at 20. But in 2013 he decided to leave my mom for this woman. During this time my mom found out she had thyroid cancer and her symptoms were basically the reason my dad “just fell out of love”. Which makes me wonder if he understood his vows “in sickness and in health”. But whatever.

I was pregnant with N, and my world was crushed. I had dreams of my parents as grandparents and all the fun things that went with that. And then I also felt cheated on too. Because my dad didn’t just leave my mom, he left our family. Not a sorry in smoke of dust as he hurried away to be with some other woman. Which he actually kicked my mom out… had this lady move in… uh so stupid. Makes me mad.

So fast forward to this year. It’s been probably exactly 5 years since his affair started. He flew to Texas to help us move in. We picked him up at the airport and what is on him? A giant black wedding ring. And I instantly was sick. His wedding ring with my mom was a simple gold band. But this black one just reminded me of death.

Watching my husband and his siblings do so much to prepare the funeral for their dad was really incredible. It was the worst time in their lives and they band together and made decisions for their dad. I wish none of them went threw any of that. Their mom was in ICU from the same car accident that killed their dad instantly, so all the arraignments was on them.

I listened and read so many words of how great of a man their dad was. I heard each of the kids speak about their dad and the thoughts and memories they hold dear.

What I’m writing about is not even in the same boat as to what my husband has gone threw.

But as I sat there in the van after picking my dad up, I started grieving. My relationship with my dad is done. When he dies my brothers and I will have no part in his funeral. His new wife will.

And to make this all even hurt more, my dad never spoke a word of it. I text my brother and he called me and told me that my dad called him after it happened and told him….. I’m not sure about my other brother, but none of us where there…. was it a, “yay we started our relationship by cheating and ruining a family five years ago, let’s celebrate and get married”? Ugh I feel so sick.

I assume my dad didn’t tell me bc it’s not a secret what I think or how I feel. But how freaking childish and rude.

I literally started hyperventilating in a bathroom from it. And I realized I was just grieving. Grieving the hope that one day my dad would come back to his normal self. That he would apologize and come back to his family. Or even if that didn’t happen because I’m not sure I would ever want my mom to be with him again anyways, at least turn away from his mistake.

I am curious how long he will go before he cheats on this lady…. because I don’t understand how he can leave my mom and his family. And now he’s having his own secret family and he lives in two different worlds. He has time where he sees us, but he’s not himself in those times. He’s not open and honest (granted I don’t want to hear about this new life he has because it hurts me).

It just hurts. It hurts that he created a family and left. It hurts that I have watched my mom be crushed. It hurts that he doesn’t even care. That hurts the most. It hurts that when he dies, I’m not going to get up on a stage and talk about all these good memories like my husband just did for his dad. It all hurts.

I’m very much writing out of emotion and on top of that pregnant hormones. I’m not censoring my thoughts, I’m just getting them out. Trying to write again as a way of processing and letting go.

xoxo kymberly

Legacy.

This last weekend a childhood friend of my husbands died unexpectedly of a heart attack on an airplane at the age of 29.

What. The. Heck.

Friends set up a gofundme account and it has raised over 20,000$! In just 2 days. The paragraphs of writings and photos shared on social media have brought me to complete tears.

He is dancing in heaven for sure, but goodness did his dying leave heartache on earth.

It’s made me think a lot. When I die, will things be written about me like this? Would people come together for a gofundme account to raise money for my family?

My husband wanted to go through yearsbooks tonight to look at memories of him and this friend. So as I sat with him I also went through my yearbooks. I ended up staying up for hours reading what people wrote to me.

So many friends thanked me for being me. For not caring what people thought. For being annoying and crazy haha. For listening and making them laugh.

Every person wrote one or more of those things. Almost all of them said thank you to me for letting them just be themselves around me and not judging them and making them laugh.

I’ve never thought of myself as funny. I find others funny and spent most of my growing up laughing at others. I bruised my ribs from laughing so much one night!

Now, I’m a mom of toddlers, who today lost my mind and yelled at my oldest. And it wasn’t nice. I just snapped. I said I’m sorry and talked to him about how it wasn’t okay what I did and that I yelled at him. But I feel like my days are so hard right now that I’m not laughing every day. I’m making my kids laugh every day, but that deep laugh that used to make me fall over, that is gone in the monotonous work of being a mom of toddlers.

I would however not change where I am at. I love my kids. They definitely make me smile every day and challenge me and teach me. They are the best thing that has ever happened to me.

But am I affecting any other lives? Does that even matter now? My kids are my legacy. How I raise them. How they are as adults and their strengths. I hope I cheer on who they are individually and that I don’t judge them. And that when they are adults they can be some of my best friends and we can have those good deep belly laughs.

I hope when I die, that I lived this life well like my husbands friend. He lived every day to the fullest and lived it for God. It’s powerful reading the impact he had on others from such a young age.

xoxo kymberly

Pregnancy and Baby Announcements.

I’ve gotten to share two pregnancy and two baby announcements on social media. I feel super blessed to be able to do that. I also should say that I love baby and pregnancy announcements. It is the main reason I check my Instagram. I want to see the cute additions to families and the creative ways that people share their news.

Lately…. These pregnancy announcements bring me to tears.

Its the weirdest feeling because it is not jealousy, it is not that I want to be them and want to be pregnant. In general, I don’t like being pregnant. But I want my baby back. I want that pregnancy back. I want to be in my second trimester.

All these announcements, I should also be announcing my pregnancy.

I should be announcing that we are going to keep the gender a surprise.

I should be posting belly pictures and what movements I’m feeling.

But I’m not.

I seriously feel like everyone is pregnant and due in May. I had to unfollow some people because it hurt to see what I should be posting and I’m not. And it truly has nothing to do with them at all. It has everything to do that my baby should still be here and I don’t know why its not.

Now going into the holidays where I thought I was going to be pregnant and I’m not going to be now. Its so weird. It feels like the fastest 9 weeks of my life.

That week of loosing the baby was the hardest week that I have ever had. It felt like it was lasting forever. Every time I went to the bathroom I was so scared that the bleeding was going to start. I just laid in bed holding my tummy praying and crying out that its heart would start beating again.

And in a blink of an eye, it has been almost 2 months already.

Did that all really happen?

Was I really pregnant for those 9 weeks?

xoxo kymberly

Waterfall Mom. 

It took a couple months for me to get the hang of being a mom. Learning N and what he needed and when. Also to learn my roll as a mom. The selfless part came natural to me. I fell in love with a little baby and would do anything for him. And not that I want to be selfish, but I am learning I need to take care of me also. 
A friend of mine at bible study gave this beautiful picture that I am a teared waterfall. If the very top pool isn’t filled, then there isn’t any water to fall into the pools below. How am I supposed to fill others if I am empty? 
Another friend of mine for months has been encouraging me to find something that is mine again and press into that. Just to really take care of myself all around. If I’m taking care of me then I’m going to be a better wife, mom, daughter and friend because I’m being filled and able to pour into others. 

With that being said, finding alone time as a mom of two is a lot harder for me than a mom of one. I do good being a mom of two. That transition of taking two everywhere and getting them fed, dressed, and naps, with little meltdowns or tears, I do good. A lot of days I’m really proud of myself! But I’ve been struggling as to when to find time to sit at the feet of Jesus and be filled. 

I feel guilty when I hear that other are having this alone quiet time, or coffee time, or even at church when asked if I am having quiet time because it’s so important. I’m not. My day is so busy with little monotonous things that before I know it, it’s 7:00pm and time for baths and bed. 

I love little tips I’ve been told. Or stories of other moms that have had a hard time like me. One mom would put a blanket over her head and the kids knew that was her time with Jesus and they wouldn’t bug her. Another mom had “coffee with Jesus” and her kids left her alone if that coffee was in her hands. Another mom got her time with Christ by doing bible crafts and stories with her kids. 

It is hard to be a mom of little ones and find that time to have for yourself and be filled. Sleep is so important that waking up early is not an option for me when Peyton still gets up 3-4 times a night. So most days I have worship music playing in the house. Then I can stop where I am and sing or dance and my kids love it and do their own thing. 

I also am finding more time this week as my toddler randomly became in love with the movie Trolls. That gives me about an hour once I get P fed set up with something. 

I started doing more bible journaling. I love it. It takes my love of scrapbooking (that I have zero time for) and my need and want to press into Christ and gives me the filling I need so much. I am getting both! Something for me, and time with Jesus. 

I don’t know what I’ll do when Trolls is not a hit anymore haha. Maybe I’ll be blessed and they will nap at the same time! 

I hope if you’re a mom, you find something for you. Something that you love to do and have some time to do it and enjoy it as you go along your day and clean the spot on the floor 15 times and no one notices. I hope you also find a way to sit and breath and take in what God wants to teach you and share with you. And I also hope you don’t feel guilty as I have about not spending quiet time with Jesus. There is grace for us. He knows what we are doing. He sees us clean that spot 15 times! 

Have blessed day! 

xoxo

kymberly

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What did you Learn Today?

Everyday, all day, I repeat myself. 

By the end of the night I’m so tired of talking. 

Today I told Nathan to “wait” and was trying to teach him that he can’t have something right then and there. (Well actually everyday I’m teaching this.)

He is a child that has to get his thoughts out though. You can’t tell him to not interrupt when others are talking because to him, he has the most important thing to say and has to be heard out right that second. 

It’s pretty challenging for me to try and teach him to wait his turn when it comes to talking. 

Then I learned today…. I’m like that. 

Now I’m very aware that my son is my husbands physical clone but my personality clone. It’s actually really funny how he acts exactly like me but looks exactly like his dad! 

Another reason why so many things are challenging to teach him, he’s just like me and I realize I’m needing to change my behavior to set the example for him. But that’s a different post. 

Today I learned that I don’t like the waiting…

I mean who likes to wait? 

I just didn’t think of it in the context of praying. 

I pray for something to change and am just waiting for it to happen right then or at least before I go to bed. Sometimes I’m praying like I have the most important request and I need it answered right then. I can’t wait. I have the most important prayer (which is silly looking at it that way). 

But…. What’s happening in the time that God has me waiting? Why doesn’t he answer my prayer request right then? 

I learned that I need to soak in what he is doing in the waiting time. What he’s teaching me and what I could be learning. And then I thought… “how many times has God repeated himself to me? And asked me to wait?” It blows my mind his patience level he has! 


 xoxo

kymberly 

Coming Up For Air. 

Right now I have both my kids napping. The youngest is slowly waking up, or I would go take a nap also. Today I felt like I needed to use my spare five minutes to write. 

Today I broke. I got to the breaking point from the hectic last few weeks and broke. I just cried as I made Nathan’s lunch. 

I’m so tired. 

And in the exhaustion I can’t think clearly. 

Peyton is 6 weeks old and from the moment she was born she has had something going on with her. Nothing serious, but enough to have prescriptions or X-rays taken. Every week it’s something new and normally the things overlap to where I’m not getting a break to see her fully healthy. I have told some friends that I’m ready for her to be about 6 months old. Out of the newborn age so there is more options on ways to help her out. 

Nathan is 2. He doesn’t like to listen. It drives me insane and to keep from losing my cool, I have to remind myself that he is only two, he just had a new sister, mommy isn’t focused only on him, and we just moved to a new house. He has a lot going on in his little life! 

But today I took about an hour getting Peyton to sleep. I put her down and Nathan ran and slammed the door shut. I was so mad. So mad. It woke her up. I told him for the first time to go to his room. I needed a break. He cried for maybe 4 minutes until he found his 5,687 toys and played. I put Peyton back to sleep and made his lunch. Then tears just fell and I cried a couple minutes to a friend. 

What is this rash Peyton has now? How can I help her? Is it serious? Should I take her to the doctor? Is she okay? Am I crazy? Because I’m so tired, I can’t think clearly. I am mentally and physically exhausted. I find myself praying all day that Peyton is completely healed, for peace in my heart and wisdom. No more contacting her doctor or asking my mom friends the same questions over and over from their experiences. 

I just need to come up for some air. I have been living under a rock trying to figure this all out. Our new home, a wife, mom of two, a sister, and still being a friend to others. 

I’ve had a lot of people ask to help me, and I have taken help from a good amount of amazing women in my life. So thankful for them. But even after they leave or I get off the phone with them, I’m exhausted. 

I learned my worst fear isn’t necessarily bad health, it’s my kids having something wrong and I don’t have the wisdom to know what to do and it becomes worse. 

Crying today helped me. Sitting in silence right now is also helpful. Writing is therapeutic for me. I felt like I came up for air a little today. I actually threw up my hands and said I can’t carry all this. Such a crazy season right now and I am praying I have the right perspective to enjoy the moment because I know this time will go fast. I think I just need to come up for air a little more often and rest in the peace of Christ. 


xoxo kymberly

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