Friday, October 10, 2014


My day has been filled with tiny giggles and big belly laughs, chocolate chip covered faces, wet kisses, arms wrapped tight around my neck, little hands pulling at my apron, water and tears spilled, fears calmed, lessons taught, songs sung, the same three books over and over, more kisses, and four sweet lovies tucked in bed. What could be more beautiful?

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

End The Night

Last night I had a terrible nightmare.

In my dream, two of my children and I were taken from our home and forced to work at a brothel. I begged and cried and pleaded with the woman in charge to let my children leave. I told her that I would be her best employee if only she'd let my children go. She responded with a matter of fact "They are old enough to work. They are cute and they'll sell well."

The next scene I remember is the morning after that first night's "work" holding my little boys in my lap weeping and one telling me "I thought the night would never end, Mama. I thought the morning would never come!" I was broken and so were they. There was no hope for us.

I woke to the sound of the baby crying and after I realized it was just a dream I began to calm down. I nursed the baby, gave her some Tylenol to help with her teeth and walked with her for a while.

Then I put her back to bed and went back to my bed. But I did not sleep.

That dream kept playing in my mind and while I was relieved that it wasn't true and that all of my children were sleeping safely in their beds, I couldn't help but realize that it is true for so many mamas. As I lie in my bed last night, there were women crying, screaming, begging, making bargains they never would have otherwise made in order to protect their babies.

Our world is broken. For so, so many it feels like an eternal night of hell and that morning will never come.

Some mamas just risked it all, they gave up all of their money, they gave their babies to strangers or sent them off on their own and hoped against hope that morning could come for the ones they loved. They sent them off with tears and kisses and lots of prayers. Maybe if they made it to America they'd be safe. And the gamble of "maybe" being safe was worth the risk, because they couldn't deal with the certainty of their baby being forced into the gangs, forced to kill or be killed, forced to become a prostitute, forced to sacrifice humanity for survival.

Some of those babies made it! They survived long treks with little food. They survived the traffickers that were supposed to be taking them to safety abusing and taking advantage of them. They kept moving forward because their mamas told them not to stop until they crossed the border, that when they got there they would have the chance to be children again.

They made it! They did it! They were safe!

But we don't want them. Those children will expose our children to all types of diseases. Think of all of the terrible things they've seen; won't they replicate the terrors they have been exposed to and our children need to be protected from such atrocities. Those children are not our children.

Please, for just a moment imagine that they were our babies. That we had our babies in a place that we could not keep them safe, no matter what we did. That we had to send them off, reliant on the mercy of others and the mercy of God.

I beg for mercy! Please, they may not be our babies, but they are somebody's babies! We can work together to end the night!

If you are interested in being a voice for mercy by calling or writing your congressmen here are the links to contact them:
House of Representatives


Sunday, February 23, 2014

For Kezzi- On The Hard Days

I wrote this for Kezzia last month, but it fits again: with a trip to the emergency room due to a "hair tourniquet" (it's a real thing) followed by our little ER souvenir of uncontrollable vomiting all around. I think the worst has passed and am dreaming for a decent night's rest.

Sweet Kezzi,

You were sick this week. You cried so much and were so uncomfortable. I held you and walked round and round and round the living room with you. Every time I tried to sit and rock you, you threw your body backward with all the force your little 10 month old muscles had and screamed and head butted me until we got back up and walked some more. A few times I had to take you to your bed and let you cry for a minute because I *had* to use the restroom or make lunch for your brothers or just take a breather.

It was so hard.

I cried a lot with you.

Caring for little ones is the hardest thing I have ever done. Honestly, many days I wonder whether or not I can do this mothering thing. It is so hard. Some days I give and give and give and it's never enough. And some days I'm selfish and don't give and that hurts my heart too. The sick days are the hardest, trying to do the every day hard stuff with a little one who is hurting is heart-breakingly hard.

But it is also good.

When you fall asleep in my arms and I feel your soft baby hair and skin against my cheek, I know I can do it.

When you reach for me and open and close your little hands to tell me that you want me to hold you, I know I can do it.

When you and all of your brothers are tangled up together for a bedtime story, I know I can do it.

The love I have for you is fierce and even on the days that are oh-so-hard, it makes me brave.

Little One, you are going to face so many things in your life that are hard. You may think that there must have been some sort of mistake, because the mess you find yourself in is too hard. You will probably find some things that you had no doubt that you'd be good at and then realize that whatever it was did not come as naturally as you had expected.

But Sweet One, almost anything worth doing is hard sometimes. So far my experience is that the experiences I most treasure in this life have been hard. Be brave.

Just because it is hard does not mean you're doing it wrong.

I hope that by the time you are old enough to read and understand this letter I will have been made kinder and softer by all of the hard things I have run into.

My hope for you is that one day when you find yourself in that place where you say "I can't!" you'll find the courage hang on, because nothing lasts forever. Every single difficult day this week came to an end. Even when you cried for what seemed like hours and I could not put you down, eventually you fell asleep and in those moments I held you even closer.

In the shower this week, I wore out this chorus:
"Your grace is sufficient for me;
Your strength is made perfect when I am weak.
And all that I cling to, I lay at your feet.
Your grace is sufficient for me."

These moments, these hard, I cannot do this moments, they can make me more like Jesus.
Sister, I don't know what life looks like for you now, but I sure know that the world can always use a few more people who act like Jesus.

So today, when things are so, so hard- breathe deep and keep being brave.

I love you,

Wednesday, February 5, 2014


“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket- safe, dark, motionless, airless–it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable.” ~C. S. Lewis