Happy Mother’s Day

The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world.~~William Ross Wallace

The first time ever I saw your face...
The first time ever I saw your face…

The Saturday before mother’s day, my girlfriends Heather and Katie and I had a mom’s night out. A local organization called MomsBloom and a local kids and parenting blogger and Facebook friend, Melody of GRKids, joined with our local theater, Celebration Cinemas to host Mom’s Night Out. Our tickets included the movie, a small popcorn, a large soda, and a Mom’s Night Out party with make up application from a local salon, product demonstrations for Things Moms Need. But we’ll get to the movie in a bit.



Ladies, tonight is our night, and we look good. ~~Allison (Sarah Drew) in Mom’s Night Out (2014)

eli rubs
Mmmm Ribs.

Katie, Heather and I skipped the before party, showing up just in time to register for the prizes (which we didn’t win any of, boo!) and instead chowed down at a Mediterranean cafe down the way.

Side note: if you’re ever in Grand Rapids and find yourself with a hankering for amazing… Please. Go try out Shesco Grill. The service was bar-setting and the food…

oh. em. gee….

They start you with unending little rolls, warm from a stone oven. And this spread. It’s lemon juice and garlic infused olive oil that’s then whipped into a warm-butter-textured spread… You smear some on those little bread rolls and you understand why the Hebrews wandered around Israel for 40 years…

Because surely this is what manna is…

In fact, I’m eating those little rolls and spread right. this. minute. for breakfast.

I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him.~~1 Samuel 1:27

“Y’all spend so much time beating yourself up – must be exhausting. I doubt the good Lord made a mistake giving your kiddos the mama he did. You just be you – he’ll take care of the rest.“ – See more at: http://www.theresaceniccola.com/book-reviews-and-author-interviews/moms-night-out/#sthash.vnVDG6yb.dpuf
eli hospital pic
this IS my happy face….

On a sunny Thursday in June, many moons ago, I became a mom. I was a mother already, having carried my child first in my soul and then snugly nestled under my heart. I had been told I couldn’t get pregnant. So to me, my little miracle-should-not-have-been-ultimate-slap-in-the-face-of-medical-expertise was literally the culmination of  nearly a lifetime of prayers and dreams.

I knew he was a boy, despite 8 months of being told he was a girl. I was so very sure of it that I only bought blue. Sailboats. Race cars. Trains. Airplanes. Ponies. Navy blue. Orange. Green.  Nothing even remotely gender neutral.

It was all boy, all the way.

As a result, the first question I asked when I started to come through in recovery (I ended 27 hours of pitocin-induced labor with a c-section… what a wonderful thing a c-section is! Labor was clearly not something I was cut out for...)  My first question was, “Is it a boy?”  I vaguely remember my step-mother sitting next to my dad in chairs at the end of the bed. “Yes. He’s a boy! And he’s beautiful!” And then I passed out. I didn’t wake again until they brought him to me, hungry and ready to eat for the first time.

*sigh* twitterpated.

“Being a mother is learning about strengths you didn’t know you had…. And dealing with fears you didn’t know existed…”~~Linda Wooten

eli laughing baby
Those eyes… That smile…

I still remember his raspy newborn cry. I remember singing what would be our night-night song for his entire childhood. And I remember how he instantly calmed when he heard me singing that song that punctuates each night of his life, from birth to around 6 or 7…

I remember knowing that my life was forever changed.

That. I. Was. Changed.

I cannot tell you what an honor it is to raise this kid. He’s sweet. Sensitive. Helpful. Infuriating. Exhausting. Irrational. Completely logical. A dichotomy of traits that most days leave me with my brain spinning wondering what in the world he just said…

It hasn’t always been easy. But it certainly hasn’t always been hard. There are, as in all relationships, ups and downs. Days when it’s the two of us against the world… And days when it’s he and I battling out for control of the remote.

I’ve chased monsters out of closets with monster spray. I’ve held my tongue when chains and ropes got draped across trees and porches and tied down to.the.house. to make homemade ziplines in the backyard. I’ve read books about things I didn’t understand much less care about.

eli car handsom
Really, Mom? Just, no.

And I think if I have to hear One.More.Thing. about MineCrack that my head will turn into a block of TnT and explode all over his Creepers and Steve will die and Kidlet will be sad. 

Steve is such a block head.

“Y’all spend so much time beating yourself up – must be exhausting. I doubt the good Lord made a mistake giving your kiddos the mama he did. You just be you – he’ll take care of the rest.“ – See more at: http://www.theresaceniccola.com/book-reviews-and-author-interviews/moms-night-out/#sthash.vnVDG6yb.dpuf

“Y’all spend so much time beating yourself up – must be exhausting. I doubt the good Lord made a mistake giving your kiddos the mama he did. You just be you – he’ll take care of the rest.” ~~Bones (Trace Adkins) in Mom’s Night Out (2014)

me and e
I love him, I love him, I love him, And where he goes, I’ll follow, I’ll follow, I’ll follow. Until it gets creepy. At which point I will immediately cease following him.

Thankfully I’m passed most of the up-all-night-worrying-that-some-big-baddie-will-still-leap-out-of-the-darkness-of-the-closet-and-devour-our-lives stages of early childhood. We know he has ADHD and we have taken steps to treat it and empower him.  We know he’s scary smart with an IQ in the 150s without his meds (We haven’t had it tested with them. Who knows how smart he is when he can actually focus on the task at hand…) We know he’s smarter than any of us dares to pretend to be. Which really only means that he can out-think and out-logic us when it serves his purpose… And even when it doesn’t. We’re still working on time and place.

We’re moving on to a whole new level of fear and terror as parents. Teenage-hood. *blink blink*

I stopped blaming myself for his short comings and weaknesses at some point and have accepted him mostly for exactly who he is. Does that mean I don’t sometimes lose it and turn into a fire-breathing bitch dragon?

eli superhero 2
I’m already my mom’s superhero; I just don’t know it yet.

No. Of course not. And sometimes he needs to be yelled at. Many times he doesn’t. Thankfully he’s quick to forgive, and I’m quick to confess my being out of line and ask for his forgiveness. I forgive myself and he forgives me and we both move on. Better people for my outburst. 

And I think that is probably the two greatest life lessons I can offer him as a mother.  

The ability to admit when you’re wrong.

And the ability and willingness to forgive.


Happy-Welcome-To-The-Rest-Of-Your-Life-Where-For-All-Of-Your-Days-Forever-More-Your-Heart-Will-Wander-Around-On-The-Verge-Of-Destruction… Or-Ultimate-Joy. Because you know, it really could go either way…

Happy Mother's Day 2014
Happy Mother’s Day 2014

For mother’s day, my guys got me a pendant. It’s a Celtic trinity knot and the sides of the knot are a mother and child wrapping into one another.  I love it. Our family… Our little trio… Supported and surrounded by my husbands heart so that I can support and surround our child. (One day, I’ll tell you about my engagement ring. My husband is amazing–not completely by himself. He did, after all, only have to click *BUY NOW* on the email I sent him with the link… LOL)

But I’m pretty sure that says it all.

And if it doesn’t, this surely does.

eli moms day 2005
happy mother’s day, 2005

So, even though it’s a little late, Happy Mother’s Day. And if you haven’t seen it yet, Mom’s Night Out is in theaters until Thursday! Go see it! Have a mom’s night out of your own! You’ve earned it!





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