Feeling Hot, Hot, Hot

While swimming is just a single word for some, it is a full-on panic attack for others. My first thought when I hear the word swimming is, “What am I going to wear?” Do I have anything that fits? During my high school and college years, I wanted one that showed off my size 2 body. 3 kids later, no longer a size 2, and in my late 30’s, I am wondering how much I can wear over a bathing suit and still have mobility in the water. However, I started this blog to serve as encouragement to others. How can I tell others they are awesome and not feel awesome about myself? I mean the name of my blog clearly states I am awesome.

So, I took the plunge and bought a mom suit that I felt confident in and proceeded to wear it in public. I started by dipping my toe in the water and wearing my new suit to the inside pool at my gym. After building up my confidence, I embarked on a journey to the SPAR water park…a very crowded public place. As I was applying sunscreen to my one shade darker then transparent fair skin, I realized I couldn’t get my back. I asked a mom near me if she could spray my back for me.

I didn’t even worry about how I looked, to be honest. I was just focused on having fun with my daughter. Ironically, I did notice how sunburned people around me were getting. I smiled knowing that I had come prepared. The sun didn’t stand a chance against my 110 SPF spray sunscreen.

3 hours later, we leave the park to pick up my boys from a summer camp. I noticed that my back felt little burned. By the time we get home, I felt like my back was on fire. I slowly and painfully removed my shirt to see how bad my back really was. It was bad. Really bad. I had not stressed to that kind stranger the importance of covering my very pale back thoroughly. I had also missed a large section on the back of one of my arms while I was applying sunscreen.

Now I have been sunburned in the past, but this time was different. There were 2 parts on my back that were so painful, I could hardly move. I had a palm-size spot on my left shoulder and the radius of about 2 palms wide on the back of my right shoulder that were, “bring tears to your eyes” kinda painful whenever I moved. My husband and all 3 of my kids took shifts applying aloe to my back. They even used shaving cream with aloe in it at one point. I took several cold baths and applied ice packs to these 2 particular spots.

Nothing was working. 4 days after going to the water park, most of my sunburn had started to fade…except for the 2 spots. These spots actually became bumpy with fluid under them, and the pain seemed to be getting worse. I broke down and went to Urgent Care to see what was going on. Turns out these 2 spots were missed entirely in the sunscreen applying process. I had 2nd-degree burns on my back. The doctor gave me some ointment and a script for Keflex to prevent the burns from becoming infected.

I am thinking I may have been coming in too hot with the Bringing Sexy Back theme. I have now bought a 2nd swimsuit. I will wear the original mom suit for swimming inside and the 2nd swimsuit for outside swimming.

The devil is real guys, but I refuse to let him steal my joy or derail me on my journey. This time I need to remind myself that I have got this. I am awesome and do a self-high five.

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I Need to Simmer Down, Y’all!

I was getting wound up really fast and needed a prayer to help me calm down! Calm down ASAP! This whole motherhood thing was about to kill me! I went to my priest for some advice! I explained to him that I was taking some deep breaths, but I was not achieving the level of serenity I know God can provide! I was finding myself practically yelling at Jesus that I needed patience, and I needed it NOW opposed to calmly talking to the man upstairs. To sum it up in my own words, my priest suggested finding my happy place, clearing my mind, using my indoor voice, and saying this prayer every morning!

O Holy Spirit, beloved of my soul, I adore You. 
Enlighten me, guide me, strengthen me, console me.
Tell me what I should do; give me Your orders.
I promise to submit myself to all that You desire of me
and to accept all that You permit to happen to me.
Let me only know Your Will.

-Desire Joseph Cardinal Mercier (1851-1926)

I put this prayer on my fridge and say it in the morning over my morning cup of happiness (coffee). I have actually found myself feeling more at peace and joyful about the day. I have gone from trying to carry all of the burdens in my life to just handing them over to God. Man, I feel lighter already. I should have tried this burden diet earlier. Wake up, give glory to God, and remind myself HE is in control/ has my back….repeat daily.

Dad… Not Just The Other Adult Home

I understand that children show love for their parents in different ways. For instance, my children show their love for me in the form of asking me 20 questions and hovering. They show their love for their dad by letting him sleep and allowing him to use the bathroom in peace. However, today is a special day. I wanted to make sure he felt loved and appreciated. I informed my kids that the best way to celebrate Father’s Day was to pretend I was not home. Have a question? Not getting along with a sibling? Bleeding? Hungry? Ask your Dad.

Jokes aside, no matter how amazing moms can be, there is one thing we can never be…dad. For all the dads out there, I want you to know that you matter. You are loved. You are appreciated. You truly make a difference.  No one can ever take your place, especially in your child’s eyes. Don’t believe me?  Just ask any girl on her wedding day whom she wants to walk her down the aisle. She will pick her daddy any day of the year.

Still, don’t believe me? Scientific studies have found a positive correlation between (a) the involvement of a father in a child’s life and (b) the emotional and social development of a child. Furthermore,  studies have also found children are 3x more likely to go to church and pray if they see their dad attending church and praying.  So dads, the next time you feel like your child could care less about what you say or do, think again.

Here are some things I have noticed within my family dynamics.

  • Dads have a natural deep “don’t make me repeat myself” voice. I have to go postal before my kids seem to hear me, but my husband’s voice is so assertive even the neighbors brush their teeth and clean their rooms when he tells our kids to. Shoot, I even debate the cleanliness of our room and mentally review my oral hygiene. 
  • Dads have broad shoulders built for little kids to sit on. I attempted to put my daughter on my shoulders at Disney, and it just wasn’t the same. She had me in a headlock with her legs while maintaining a steady death grip on my hair.
  • Hanging out with your mom is just not the same as hanging out with your dad. My husband’s ideal trip would be taking the kids fishing and camping.
    • Personally, I think camping is just a costly way to live like a homeless person in the woods. My ideal trip would be going to a place with conveniently located bathrooms, an abundance of air condition, and a food court of some kind. I would also spend the night in a hotel that serves a complimentary breakfast.  
  • Dad coaching vs. Mom coaching. My husband coached my son’s 8-year-old baseball team, and they placed 1st.  He provided criticism sparingly, he talked to the players with his deep dad voice, and there was a sense of friendly competitiveness.
    • I coached my son’s 6-year-old soccer team, and we lost EVERY game. I told the kids to have fun, try your best, and never give up. To put my coaching style into perspective, I hugged a kid for dribbling the ball the correct direction and not falling.  I also focused heavily on making sure the kids were hydrated and protected from the elements (bug spray and sunscreen).
Fist bump from Coach Dad
  • No one can throw a ball around the backyard like a dad. Trust me; I have tried. It is NOT the same.
  • No one can fix broken toys like a dad. My husband can work wonders with superglue. I can get a new toy on Amazon and have it delivered in 2 business days.
  • Dads never get muted in the cheering section of sporting events. My mom voice apparently sounds like I am handing out juice boxes to the whole team from the bleachers.
  • A dad can make you feel safe and protected just standing next to him. I can provide plenty of protection and safety from a perpetrator with my mace and knock the individual out with my “mom purse”  that weighs more than a small child.

Seriously dads, you don’t get the credit you deserve. I know for a fact that I don’t thank my husband or my own dad enough. So call your dad and tell him you appreciate him putting up with your shenanigans. Avoid giving your husband the stink eye Limit the amount of times you give your husband the stink eye. Take time to reflect that without a dad, you wouldn’t exist.

For all of the awesome dads out there reading this… internet high five.  After all, you are not just the other adult home, you are dad.

The Early Bird Gets…Trash

An epic paper airplane modeling competition started early this morning at my house. Test flights and races proceeded to take place in the same room I was eating breakfast. After a few crash landings into my head, I no longer needed coffee to wake up. I was fully awake. My request for my children and their airplanes to vacate the room I was in turned into planes being thrown into a ceiling fan in the next room. At this point, I strongly encouraged the air show to move outdoors. When I say strongly encouraged, I really mean I opened the back door and told them the airshow needed more air (as in FRESH AIR).  

Later in the day, I noticed the kids left an airplane, well what was left of an aircraft, outside. I told them to go pick it up and not leave paper in the yard. RIGHT as I am telling my kids this, a bird landed in the yard and began making repeated trips to the crash site. She was cleaning up my kids’ trash to make a nest. My kids counted this as a win. Meanwhile, I stood there, dumbfounded. Why don’t birds sweep down and clean up messes for me?!?!  On a positive note,  I no longer have to look at the paper in the yard; however, I now have to look at in my tree.