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Sunday, September 28, 2014

reasons why i'm thankful for the hardships of military living

justin left again today. in and out, in and out. it makes my head spin. the constant coming and going, readjusting our routine, it's exhausting. and stressful. and dizzying. and i kind of hate it. not to mention the kids ONLY get sick when dad is gone. and what do you know, tonight my youngest has a fever. go figure! the day justin leaves is always the hardest on me. i've been kind of mopey today. it's often a lonely life. but ya know what...it's not all bad. i've been trying to think about what i'm THANKFUL for in all this, and that is what i'm going to share with you now! 1) the good think about work ups and the stress that comes along with it, is that it forces you to be ready for deployment. by the time we're done with work ups i'll just be ready to get this thing over with! 2) i get to see what i'm made of. i get to rely on God in a way that i never would have to would we be living a "normal" civilian life. i get to know him in a different, deeper way. he has become my best friend, sometimes my only friend. there's a trust that i feel towards him knowing that yes my husband will leave me...i probably will never live near my family again...and my friends are always coming and going...but God will never leave me. never. i am never truly alone. 3) you know what else? i get to solo parent for weeks and months at a time. it's hard and i definitely would prefer my husband were here with me BUT it is so rewarding! knowing that i am capable of raising these kids with minimum help. it's an adventure. it's not for the faint of heart. 4) i am able to show my kids how to carry on even when you're sad. i'm able to teach them to rely on God for their strength when they feel they have none. i'm able to show them that it's ok to cry for a while, as long as you get up and keep on going! 5) while justin is gone, i get to pursue my own interests. during these training trips i have spent a lot of time working on my novel, something that i definitely don't have time for when he is home. i miss him, but i enjoy this time to myself, too. 6) i get to watch as many chick flicks as i want! during one of his week long trips i watched a different romance film every single night. it was fantastic. 7) i know that my husband is gone because he has to be, not because he wants to be. there is a huge difference and i'm thankful for that. 8) when justin is gone, i can go a week without washing dishes or doing laundry and nobody cares. we can also have cereal or pb&j for dinner and that's pretty awesome. 9) while justin is deployed i always go spend a few months with my family. i am definitely missing him the whole time, but the visits with my family are really so priceless and precious. i'm thankful to be able to spend the quality time with them! 10) when your husband is gone and you don't live near any of your family, you have to get plugged in and find good friends. you just have to. i am thankful to have the opportunity to rely on my Navy sisters and my sisters in faith. they have prayed with me, for me, over me. they have brought me food, watched my kids, helped me move. i'm certain i'll never experience friendships like this ever again. such a gift. so, you see, it's not all bad. when you can find the positive in negative situations, you know you're growing stronger. i have definitely grown stronger the last four years of this life! praise God!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Navy Wife Life: be you bravely

Navy Wife Life: be you bravely: i was super blessed to be able to share my story today with my MOPs (Moms of Preschoolers) group. our theme this year for MOPs is be you b...

be you bravely

i was super blessed to be able to share my story today with my MOPs (Moms of Preschoolers) group. our theme this year for MOPs is be you bravely and i'm kind of in love with it. i believe a big part of being you BRAVELY means being vulnerable open transparent willing to share the ugly parts of yourself being you bravely has been a theme in my life over the last year, and i just think it's so neat how God does things. i see so clearly that he was preparing me for this role of MOPs coordinator. he was helping me work through things in my life so that i would be able to open myself up to these incredible women and share things that i've never shared before. it was an amazing experience. sharing your story with others is beautiful. vulnerability is beautiful. there is so much healing that can happen when you talk about the things you've been through, the things God has helped you with. i pray that my story touched someone listening today. i pray that you, too, will learn to be you bravely.

Thursday, September 4, 2014

grief, joy, victory

death is such a strange thing. you don't have to be incredibly close to someone or know them for a long time in order for their death to affect you.

we lost some one dear to us this week. a sister in Christ who the girls and i had come to love. i watched her live her life in pain every single day, always a smile on her face. to me she is the picture of grace.

 i was talking with Avery, almost 6 years old, about our dear friend's passing. i shared with her how our time here on earth is so short and then we get to go to heaven if we know Jesus. she looked at me and said, "it's almost like we are just visiting here for a while. and then God comes to take us home."

wow. did i mention she is 5 years old?!

the wisdom of babes.

the night i heard the news i went over to pray with some of my sisters from church. it was so sweet as we prayed for her sweet husband, for our church, and thanked God for allowing us to know Nancy.  we told stories of her and honored her memory with laughter and praise. i felt God's presence. even in the midst of grief i felt his presence.

my dear friend's death has reminded me that life is indeed short. make time for those you love and be sure they know how much they mean to you. i am also reminded that God is good. even in hard times, even in pain, he is still good. God is and will always be good.