Adoption, Guest Blogger, Medical Issues, Opsoclonus Myoclonus Syndrome

Guest Blogger Big Daddy on Adoption

Guest Blogger Big Daddy on Adoption

Guest Blogger Big Daddy on Adoption

This post was originally written in 2017.

Guest Blogger Big Daddy on Adoption and his thoughts. After having three biological children, we decided to enter the realm of adoption. We believed our quiver wasn’t complete, so the decision was easy. What we didn’t realize is that adoption is HARD. It doesn’t matter what kind of adoption it is. Whether through foster care, international adoption, or one of your relatives, adoption is not for the faint of heart.

Adoption is Rewarding

 

However, adoption is very rewarding. Knowing that you have taken life into your home that otherwise was not wanted or was being mistreated, abused, or neglected is an amazing miracle. God intended for children to be raised by their parents, but circumstances sometimes do not allow that to happen. That’s why we took the plunge to care for the orphans.

Our Wild Ride to Adoption

 

As for our journey, it has been a wild ride. We have had a lot of good days and plenty of bad ones. But so far, we have stayed the course. We have tried to instill Godly values in our children while teaching them honesty, integrity, responsibility, and character. Sometimes we think that we are not making much progress, but honestly, we believe if we are consistent with the kids, they will turn out fine. Each child is different. We have learned how to parent each child with different behaviors and personalities.

 

At first, I was resistant to adoption, but after I met the little girl my sister-in-law and her husband adopted from the Philipines, my heart melted. I saw the love shown and given to her and believed I could do the same. So we decided to do it.

Our First Experience

 

Our first experience with fostering to adoption started pretty good other than the fact that these children were brought to us, and we knew nothing about them. It was hard, especially with Shay, because she was non-verbal at two years old. She never did warm up to me very much. Tay, on the other hand, was very happy and always smiling. Also, they were very sick, and we could not get them well.

 

Then the day that nearly broke us into the world of fostering/adoption happened. The kids were suddenly taken away from us by the Cabinet. We had no idea….one minute, we are raising these kids, and the next minute they are gone. We were told the reason but truly believed the social worker lied about us in a court hearing that we were not present at. I was furious, and it crushed my wife. To this day, she still has the scars of them being taken from us. We had to believe that the Lord had different plans for those sweet children and us.

Never Again?

 

At that time, we told ourselves we would not go through a horrible experience like we just had but decided to give it another go around. We started fostering D and G in the spring of 2007. At first, it was really good, but we learned quickly how many of these children in the child services system could be damaged. To find out the kids you just took into your home were previously abused is a tough pill to swallow.

 

Having to raise children during an investigation of abuse and ensuing court proceedings is not the way it should be. But the kids were safe, and we did our best to cope with the behaviors stemming from their past. We finally adopted them about two and a half years later. Since then, we’ve run the gamut of ups and downs with them. Some days are good, and some days are bad, but in the end, they are loved, and hopefully, they will be able to overcome the terrible start they had in life.

International Adoption

 

Our subsequent adoption was a foray into international adoption. My wife had always dreamed of adopting from the county of Ethiopia. After I met my new nephew from Ethiopia, my sister-in-law’s second adopted child. I was ready to go to Africa. The process was a lot of paperwork and a lot of money. (Not sure why it costs so much to adopt a child who has no home or no one else wants). Within a few months, we had a referral and got a picture of our son. It was amazing how we could love someone so much whom we had never met.

 

The anticipation was unbearable. But soon after that, we could travel to Africa and meet our son. It was an experience like none other. We met our son and spent three or four days with him. We went to court and were granted the adoption. The hardest part was leaving him there. But we were told that it should only be about eight weeks before we could return and bring him home. Little did we know then that eight weeks would turn into 14 months.

Huge Mistake Made by Home Study Agency

 

Our home study agency made a huge mistake, and the US government told us we did not make enough money to bring him home. How ridiculous is that? It’s a shame that money, or the lack thereof, keeps so many people from adopting children that need good homes. When we found this out, we desperately tried everything we could to get clearance from USCIS but were flat-out denied two months later. My wife was crushed beyond all belief. From December 2010 to about November 2011, she was just a shell of a person.

 

Yes, she lived and breathed, but that was about it. She was vacant. And there was nothing I could do about it. I believed that there was no way God would allow us to travel 7000 miles to meet a boy and tell him he would be our son, then him not ever come home. Not necessarily for our sake but for his. He was an innocent child growing up in an orphanage with 50 or 60 other children like him. But God made way for us to get our clearance to bring him home, and in December 2011, we brought J to his forever home. We were made whole.

Here We Go Again

 

After we brought J home, we thought our quiver was full. But God had other plans for our family. In November of 2015, we had an opportunity to take in our great-nephew, H. His mother, our niece, had been in trouble with the law and could not take care of him. H had been living with a man who believed he was the father. He had troubles of his own and agreed for us to keep H for a while. We decided to file for emergency custody of H mainly for his safety at the time. The man he was living with turned out not to be the biological father, and we were granted temporary custody of H.

His Biological Mom

 

His mother got into even more trouble later and was facing a lot of time in prison. She made a tough yet mature decision to terminate her rights and allow us to adopt H. I can’t imagine how hard that was for her. I am very proud of her for sacrificing for her son. H invigorated our family with joy. He has so much energy and is very sweet and funny. However, in June, he was diagnosed with an extremely rare neurological disorder called Opsoclonus Myoclonus Syndrome. He has been through a lot, which has been tough on him and us. But we take it one day at a time and trust in God for healing and comfort.

Adoption is Tough

 

So those reading this and considering adopting do not have preconceived notions of lollipops and rainbows. Adoption is challenging and not for the faint of heart. But the rewards are unending. Giving a child a home and stability is a beautiful thing. Whether they know it or not, children crave structure, discipline, and a sense of worth.

 

That’s the beauty of adoption.

 

Medical Issues

What is Reactive Attachment Disorder?

 Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder

What is Reactive Attachment Disorder?

What is Reactive Attachment Disorder? RAD is a condition in which individuals have difficulty forming loving, lasting

relationships. Let me tell you; this is HARD. Seemingly, on the outside, things look great. However, at home, it is like living in a nightmare. Sadly, this is a nightmare you do not ever wake up from. Sometimes, it can be manageable. For instance, medication for moods and sleep can help sometimes. However, their body starts building resistance to medications, so trial and error become the norm.

Some General Traits

Often have a nearly complete lack of ability to be genuinely affectionate with others.

Typically fail to develop a conscience and do not seem to trust.

Do not allow people to be in control of them due to this trust issue.

They can be surface compliant for weeks if no loving relationship is involved.

However, with strangers, they can be incredibly charming and appear loving.

Uneducated adults misinterpret this as the child trusting or caring for them. If they cannot trust and love their own family that loves them, they will not trust and love a casual acquaintance.

They do not think and feel like an average person.

Some famous people with RAD

Hitler

Saddam Hussein

Edgar Allen Poe

Jeffrey Dahmer

Ted Bundy

Helen Keller

Isolated type, Predominant feeling is Sad.

1. no friends

2. no touch

3. verbally compliant, actually defiant

Evasive type, Predominant feeling is Fear.

1. clingy

2. fake

3. charming

4. chatter

5. chameleon

Defiant type, Predominant feeling is Rage.

1. cruel

2. charming

3. self-absorbed

4. destructive

Bizarre type

1. act crazy

2. constant noise

Causes

Any of the following conditions occurring to a child under 36 months of age puts a child at high risk for developing RAD:

~Maternal ambivalence toward pregnancy

~In-utero trauma, drugs, alcohol exposure

~ Abuse

~Neglect

~Sudden separation from the primary caregiver

~Undiagnosed or painful illness such as colic or ear infections

~Inconsistent or inadequate daycare

~Chronic maternal depression

~Several moves and/or placements

~Unprepared mothers with poor parenting skills

Attachment Disorder Symptoms in Children

Superficially engaging & charming

Lack of eye contact on parents’ terms

Indiscriminately affectionate with strangers

Not affectionate on parents’ terms

Destructive to self, others, and material things (accident prone)

Cruelty to animals

Lying about the obvious (crazy lying), Confabulation

Stealing

No impulse controls

Learning Lags

Lack of cause and effect thinking

More Issues

Lack of conscience

Abnormal eating patterns

Poor peer relationships

Preoccupation with fire

Preoccupation with blood & gore

Persistent nonsense questions & chatter

Inappropriately demanding & clingy

Abnormal speech patterns

Triangulation of adults

False allegations of Abuse

Presumptive entitlement issues

Parents appear hostile and angry

Attachment Disorder Symptoms in Infants

~Does not use crying appropriately to get someone to address needs

~Often does not settle when Mom meets needs

~Overreacts or often startles to touch, sound, and/or light

~Listlessness with no medical reason

~Limited holding onto or reaching for a caregiver

~Lack of appropriate stranger anxiety between 6 and 9 months of age

~Shows minimal interest in interacting with people

~Does not smile back or respond with activity to smites or baby talk

~Often does not follow human movement with their eyes

~Avoids eye contact

~ self-abusive behavior

~Is resistant to cuddling

Great Quotes

When your brain works right, so can you. When your brain doesn’t work right, neither can you.” Daniel Amen, M.D.

“Experience changes the brain,” Bruce Perry, M.D,

Attachment is at the heart of all human endeavors.” Bruce Perry, M.D.

“Traditional therapy is useless for severely traumatized people, but especially children because it does not reach the parts of the brain that were most impacted by trauma.” Bessel van der Kolk. M.D.

Complex (reactionary mind/brain stem) Survival mode

Fight – Defensive, and tantrums, argues, negative.

Flight – Runs away, hypervigilant, stress-filled, anxious

Freeze- Shuts down emotions, shuts down learning, disassociates

Talking:

Talking is the first area in which a child must gain self-control to begin healing.

Lies

Dumb questions

Unclear Speech

Jabbering

Swearing

Not answering

Why?

Arguing

I don’t know

Not accepting responsibility

Interrupting

Whining

Consequences vs. Punishment

Punishment turns thoughts to the outside of the child.

Consequences turn their thoughts inside.

Dramatic Displays:

Children must be kept close until they no longer need an audience to manipulate.

Flipping the bird

Overdramatic

Pity Parties

Fit Throwing

Aggression

Eye Rolling

Excretions:

The child must be 100% responsible for cleaning up their excretions after age five.

Urine

Feces

Flatulence

Vomit

Nasal Discharge

Spitting

Food Issues:

On the one hand, you can’t make them eat it. On the other hand, you can’t make them stop eating either. Sadly, they have to learn to control themselves. A parent’s obligation as the nurturer is to provide nutritious meals three times a day.

Hiding food

Eating too much

Not eating

Picky eating

Eating rudely

Eating weird things

Friends and Family:

Relationships must begin between the mother and child. Second, generalize to the father. Third, to the family. Fourth, to the community. Lastly, to the world.

Peer relationships

Siblings rights

Abusing other kids

Setting up

Tattling

Pets

Prescribing the Problem:

When it’s not harmful to the child, pick your battles. For instance, one avenue of intervention is prescribing the problem.

Chewing clothes

Chewing hands

Thumb sucking

Biting nails, lips, toes

Cracking knuckles

Picking boogers

Picking scabs

Masturbating

Crying wolf

Refusing medication

Nutrition

Allergies

Bedtime Issues:

Children must sleep 10 to 12 hours a night with no light in the room. On the other hand, adults need to sleep 8 hours a night with no light on in the room.

Setting alarm off

Not going to bed

Noise at night

Getting them up in the am and dressed

Restitution /Respite/Responsibility

~Restitution for stolen or intentionally stolen items should be double the item’s replacement value.

~It is the child’s responsibility to fill in the hole they dig with their inappropriate behaviors. The way they fill it in is by paying back with their time, their talent, or their energy.

~Stealing

~Running away

~Knives/weapons

~Destroying property

~Sabotaging fun

~Hygiene

From Others Toward Parents:

~Sometimes, we have to say No

~No, I won’t put my child in harm’s way by giving them freedoms they can’t handle.

~Parenting too tough, Nazis

~Not strict enough

~Munchhausen, Histrionic, Borderline, etc.

~Bad parent

~ Don’t like/love child

~Scape-goating child

~Try harder

~ love him more

Support Ideas

Realize this is a very painful situation. If you are on the Mom’s side, you are on the child’s side. Sadly, if you take the child’s side against the Mom, they both lose.

Equally important, listen with open ears and hearts. For instance, you should not judge or be critical. Again, condemning, criticizing, or blaming Does Not Help to Lift the burden, don’t load it down.

Make short, loving phone calls (occasionally) to listen and encourage, not to advise, gather information, or “check on them”- Tell her she can chat whenever she needs an ear.

Finally, do Not give unasked-for advice.

Take all information as confidential.

It is beneficial to educate yourself about Attachment Disorder.

**** Do not say, ‘Let me know if I can help.’ Do something to help.****

Practical Ideas

1. Take her to lunch or dinner.

2. Rent a funny movie and share it.

3. Send her flowers, chocolate, or cards with love and a smile.

4. Bring her some dinner or baked goods,

5. Hugs are always heading. Moms need 12 a day minimum.

6. Pray for them.

More Ideas

Run errands to help lessen the load,

Take the kids somewhere for the afternoon. Be sure she knows it’s because she deserves a break and not because she can’t handle it.

Consider giving her a gift certificate for a massage, manicure, or hair salon.

Give her Mozart’s music or some other calming or uplifting tunes.

Give her a good book.

Buy her bubble bath and watch the kids for an hour or so while she soaks to music.

Remind her of her special traits and talents.

Tell the child often, in front of her, how lucky they are to have a mom like this.

Never show up without calling to check for an appropriate time to visit.

Never tell her to “Just love the child more.” If you already have, beg forgiveness for not understanding.

Families by Design

 

Medical Issues

Confabulation The “True” Story

Confabulation The "True" Story

Confabulation The “True” Story

 

In Confabulation The “True” Story according to Merriam-Webster Dictionary,

CONFABULATION means

1to talk informally 
2to hold a discussion 
>>>>>>3to fill in gaps in memory by fabrication<<<<<<<

A major characteristic of brain-damaged patients is the tendency to confabulate—to hide and dissemble about their damage. —Peter R. Breggin

Now, I have stumbled upon another site called FASD FAMILIES. Though it is geared more towards younger FASD kids, it has helpful information. One has to realize that, say, there is a kid who is 16 years old, physically. On a good day, they are developmental, emotionally, or mentally 8 yrs old. When they are escalated, you are dealing with a 4-year-old.

No Fault of the Child

This is at no fault to the child but to why they have FASD. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome causes prenatal brain damage that they deal with for the rest of their lives. The poor decision of a mother (or father) leads to a lifetime of struggles for their children. This author also defines confabulation, and I thought it was PERFECT.

Confabulation: The fancy word is confabulation. Some would say it’s lying. I think it’s more like their version of the story becomes their truth because they don’t know the difference between truth and reality. Once they tell a story, they accept it as gospel.

^^^^^YES, HOLLA, PREACH IT, YOU GO, GIRL, ^^^^^

These are the mistakes I made (in no particular order):
I asked a question; I knew the answer too.
I began escalating because she was escalated.
I’m not even in town to deal with it because I am in the hospital with another child.
I used too many words.
Other people were involved, though they were stepping in for an absent me, not realizing they were jumping into quicksand.
We talked too long.

What an evil, vicious cycle FASD is….or any of it!

FAS (Fetal Alcohol Syndrome)

FASD (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder)

PFAS (Partial Fetal Alcohol Syndrome)

ARND (Alcohol-Related Neurodevelopment Disorder)

ARBD (Alcohol-Related Birth Defects)

It is a horrific, invisible disease. That can be 100% PREVENTED by NOT drinking while pregnant.

Now, the big question is…

HOW DO I PARENT THAT WITHOUT LOSING MY MIND?

The quick answer is, “I have no clue.” The longer answer is, “I REALLY have no clue.”

 

 

Life or Something Like It

Wonder From the Eyes of the Typical

Wonder From the Eyes of the Typical

Wonder From the Eyes of the Typical

Wonder From the Eyes of the Typical kid has inched into my brain. I use the words “typical” and “atypical” loosely. In my world, there are no “typical” kids or people. We are all a bit screwy from time to time. That is what makes the world an exciting place to live. Not being all alike, it gives areas flavor and personality.

My Reason

I used that terminology because of the movie “Wonder” that I watched last night. You can find a Christian review on this film at Plugged in Online to learn more about the different content of this movie.

They used the word “typical” in the film while referencing their oldest daughter, Via. Their youngest son, Auggie, was born with a deformity. He, too, was a biological child. For the most part, I enjoyed this movie, though it hurt my heart.

My Thoughts

This movie did not depict the strain that raising a medically fragile child can have on a marriage. The ‘parents’ seemed to get along great, and there didn’t seem to be underlying anger/hurt/resentment towards one another.

That, right there, is why this is a movie and not real life.

Raising children with special needs, whether mental, physical, life-altering, terminal, etc., have a great deal of strain on any couple. The pressure does not discriminate on whether the parents are married, co-parenting, etc. It isn’t easy. I know why people do not stay married. The all-consuming nature of special needs children is just that, all-consuming.

The Typical Child

What I feel they were pretty spot-on with is the feeling of the older daughter. The child in the shadows. The child you just let skate on and upward with because they know not to make waves. These children have learned to problem solve, maintain, and stay calm on the outside when their insides are screaming.

Guilt begins to permeate.

This movie made me think about my ‘typical’ kids and what they have seen/heard throughout the years. The pain is unbearable at the thought that I have swooshed them under the rug because I was busy putting out fires of my ‘atypical’ kids.

My kids’ needs range from minor to significant things. We have dealt with everything from Dyslexia to Mild Mental Deficit. Splash in Reactive Attachment Disorder, Fetal Alcohol Syndrome, Deafness, and Opsoclonus Myoclonus Syndrome. You will have my kids in a nutshell.

Be Careful Little Eyes What You See

My kids have seen SO much over the years. I’m so blessed that they are so aware of God and follow (mostly) in His forgiving ways. To think back, it makes me shudder to remember the looks on their faces when the violence would ensue.

I can still hear the still, small voices saying “mama stop” when I had had enough. The fear that would splash across their faces when one child would rage for hours on end. This child destroyed anything and anybody in the path of the tornado rage that was bearing down on us.

My kids didn’t have anyone over. It was not safe at times. They saw me cry more times than I could count. I have learned, over the years, to be mindful of catching my emotions before they run amuck.

Did I lose track of them in those years? Was there too long of a delay before I had had my belly full? Did my other children go unnoticed because of the acts/behaviors of one or two kids?

Be Careful Little Ears What You Hear

The things my kids have heard are horrible. The threats, the evil spewed out, the anger that flows like lava. They have listened to it all. One day, amid a storm (figurative, not literal), I noticed my son. God love him. He was corraling the other children to the back of the house.

I realized that day that he was moving them to safety. He wanted to protect their little eyes and ears from all that was going down. It was at that moment that I took control back.

No more was I going to let Satan rule my house. I was done, oh so done. Everything that I was “taught” to do by the so-called foster care rules, my church, my family, friends, other caregivers, therapists, and doctors…nothing worked.

It was time that I saw the other little faces, and I stopped the insanity that had ruled my home, mind, and heart for too long. I began to stop seeking approval from those that did not have my family’s best interest in mind. There were no more doctors, medications, or therapists. I was done.

James 4:7

Submit to God. Resist the devil. He will flee.”  James 4:7 This was the verse I would chant while the world raged around me. We made tough decisions in regards to one of our children. A decision that I tried to back out of, but my family and my physician said it was for the best. Tough decisions are sometimes the hardest ones to make but also necessary for survival.

Reflecting on our past is not all a bad thing. I must be mindful to capture the thoughts that are not of God and put them in the place they should be in my mind. From the beginning of time, he knew the children that I would have, and He has made perfect provisions for each of them. I’m so thankful that He has guarded the hearts of our typical and atypical kids from remembering everything.

Hang tough, fellow mamas in the trenches. God has our backs!

 

Depression, Guest Blogger, Suicide Awareness and Prevention

The Reality of my Nightmare

The Reality of my Nightmare

In The Reality of my Nightmare, my guest blogger writes about her interpretation of the trials that surrounded her. She writes it as if she were me. I read it the morning of my friend’s funeral. She is pretty spot on in all that she said.

The Reality of my Nightmare

Writing this seems like a nightmare

I am waiting to wake up from this nightmare because of how real it feels. But when I open my eyes, it will all go away. No. This nightmare is real. I can’t believe this is happening to me. Why? Why me? What did I do wrong to cause these people to knock on my door? Who has been watching me and observing my every movement? 

I am afraid

Afraid to raise my voice even the slightest bit because someone might be watching. Also, I am scared to take my child to the other room for fear that someone might think I will punish them. Afraid to go out in public with my child for fear that someone will judge me the wrong way and call them again. Why me? 

Raising Kids

Raising kids is hard, especially 7 of them. They are all so different in so many ways. Yet, I would not change a single hair on their head because I love them so much. I love my kids with every fiber of my being. I would gladly take any strife or burdens off their shoulders. I will put them on my own if it helps them and their future. 

My kids are special.

Some have mentally challenging issues. Then, others have some physical problems that need my constant attention. Being a mom is hard. It is tiring even. Yet, I am glad God chose these beautiful children to be mine. 

I love fiercely and will do anything in my power to protect them from the world and its temptations. Sometimes, I help others before I think about myself and my needs. I have run ragged, going in different directions to help those in need as God calls me to do. Honestly, I try to open myself up to other moms in various clubs and organizations my kids participate. I try to help them and converse with them when they need a friend or a shoulder to cry on. 

But You

You took care of my child when he played sports on your team. He became best friends with your kids. I thought you loved him like one of your own. He stayed at your house and slept over so many nights. Every time, he had a blast when he came home beaming from ear to ear. He would tell me all about how fun it is at your house. 

Invitation then Betrayal

I invited you into my home, which we manage to keep clean amongst the chaos of having multiple children and animals in the house. And yet, you betrayed my trust by calling them. Why? Why me? 

You know my child is well-fed. We give him clothes and things to toys. Furthermore, we keep him involved in sports. Importantly, we teach him the love of Jesus in everything we do. We fight for him daily because he is different. And that’s okay because I love him so much.

How Would You Feel

You are a mother with kids of your own. How would you feel if someone called them? They showed up at your doorstep asking to be invited in. Then ask you probing questions about your home and relationships with your kids? And what if you found out that it was a supposed “friend” who called them on you. 

How would you feel? 

Betrayed? 

Confused? 

I should hope so. 

That is how I felt. 

Terrifying Agony

The terrifying agony that my kids could be ripped away from me with no warning. Sadly, the wailing and uncontrollable sobbing happened in my car when I got the call. My heart can’t take it anymore. I am so tired of having to justify myself to these people. Justify every action that I do and every word that comes out of my mouth. 

How would you feel? 

Would you demand an explanation from your “friend” and say some nasty things to them in retaliation? Would you constantly look over your shoulder to make sure no one was watching you if you ever had to punish your child in public? Or are you one of those parents letting their children run amuck and do whatever they want? 

Either way, I want you to know that it is understandable if you did not know the family or had never been in their home and seen how the family operates. It would be understandable if you didn’t know my son or me. 

But you did know us. 

I was at every game. I talked to you all the time. And yet, you still called. I could trust you. You have betrayed my trust. But I choose to let God be in control of my situation. I prefer to let God judge your actions when you get to Heaven instead of judging you, which I am not called to do. 

Honestly, I choose to love like Jesus with skin on and be the city on a hill for you. I prefer to let God listen to my sorrowful prayers and collect my tears in a jar. Furthermore, I choose to let God pick me up and comfort me because he knows I am the mom He called me to be. I am not perfect. But God does not call us to be perfect. He calls us to be his disciples and to love our neighbor in his word. 

My house may be messy sometimes, and my kids may drive me crazy most days, but in what reality is home always tidy and the kids always clean and well-behaved? I would love to meet those people and that family. 

Haven’t you ever made a mistake as a parent? 

Because if you say no, that is a bold-faced lie. We fail daily at things. The key is learning from those mistakes, moving on, and leaving the past behind us. Those failures are also successes. I have put several of my kids through a full education (and I have homeschooled them for many years as well). Two of them graduated with honors, which is a huge accomplishment.

Mama Pride

One of my kids is married with a baby on the way. I could not be happier for my sweet child. My smallest child is excelling at what doctors told us would be impossible. Yet, with me by his side, he has survived those odds. 

The moments of pride I feel for the children I raised surpass the moments of sadness I think when things like this happen. I choose to find the beauty in the ashes. I will stand tall and not be shaken by people’s opinions of my family and me.

My Choices

So I will also choose to continue to stand by my children and attend every activity, club, and sporting event they are in. And if you other moms judge me or whisper tall tales about me that are not even true, I will smile and turn the other cheek as God has called me to, even if it is the hardest thing I have ever done.

Cruelty of Others

People can be so cruel nowadays, and they always look at the plank in someone else’s eye rather than focusing on the speck of dirt in their eye. Words can slice through a person and bring them down when we should be standing together as moms and supporting one another rather than bringing them down and jumping to conclusions by calling the organization before they have the facts straight. 

No, we moms are not perfect. But we are doing the best we can with the circumstances we are currently in and the children with whom the Lord has blessed us. I will continue to be the city on a hill and shine my light bright for my kids and you. 

And I know deep down in my heart that God will be pleased with my strength and integrity, and when I get to Heaven, He will say, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.” I can not wait for that day to come. 

In the meantime

I will continue to be the most fantastic mom to my kids and a faithful spouse to my husband. I am showing them the light of God. Continuing to shield them from the world will be a lifelong journey, but I would not change one thing about it, not for you or any other mom who says a spiteful word towards me. 

I will pray for you even though it is painful. Because in my darkest moments, I cling to Jesus the most, and when my faith is tested, I come out stronger than ever because my Redeemer is with me. No more hiding. No more fear. I will not be afraid.