We make choices everyday, some are more complex than others. Press snooze or get up? Eggs or a smoothie? Marry him or wait for the right one? 2 kids or more?

I can’t change the past, but I can choose to live better.

August 4, 2019

The obstetrician stopped me mid push when he noticed that the umbilical cord was wrapped around her neck. He cut the cord. Why isn’t she crying? I searched my husband’s face for answers. He gripped my hand and looked on as the medical personnel worked on our baby.

It felt like time stood still laying in the hospital bed, waiting for a friendly face to provide us with the reassurance that everything was okay. No one was smiling. Minutes later we heard her first cry. Everyone in the room let out a sigh of relief. Brooklyn had arrived.

Brooklyn – August 2019

It’s hard to believe she is now two years old and the loudest. When she hears “No.” she’ll try harder to get her way. She tests the patience of everyone around her. I know her type of fighting spirit will serve her well when she’s older, but for right now we’re teaching her to reign in her tenacious ways. She is quite the little actress.

Brooklyn- October 2021

Brooklyn was four months old when we found out we were expecting another one. I was older than 35 which made this my second geriatric pregnancy. I cringe at the word geriatric, but it is what it is.

Kylie was born June 26, 2020. Zero complications. Thank the powers that be. Another healthy baby girl. My husband is outnumbered 7-1. He has more patience than me, either that or he’s better at ignoring the insignificant moments. I have come to believe that he sees the bigger picture much better than I give him credit for.

Kylie- June 2020

When Kylie hears the faint sounds of a melody her shoulders start to shift up and down and her hips begin to sway. She has an old soul that loves ABBA’s “Dancing Queen.” Her two other loves are her thumb and her purple blanket.

Kylie- October 2021

80, 42, 30, 19, 18,  8,  2, 1…

This isn’t a number sequence or a countdown. These are the ages of everyone in the house.

Parenting two children is a challenge, but combine that with a very opinionated mother-in-law and 3 step children is anything but easy. We face a myriad of challenges at home. Different personalities, moods and disagreements pop up everyday.

What’s a day without drama? It’s not a day.

Timeline

Raised Mormon since the age of 12, I bought in the ideal timeline. Go to college, marry a returned missionary in the temple, multiply and replenish (have children) and live happily ever after. During my sophomore year in college, I met my first husband through a mutual friend. Within two months we were engaged and the following July we were sealed (married) in the Salt Lake Temple. My mother said I was too young. What did my mother know about life in America? She knew more than I did, but you can’t tell that to a headstrong 19-year-old.

Experience

I should have listened to my mother.

I am the type of a person that learns from experience. If you tell me don’t, I’ll take your thoughts into consideration and depending on the thing, I will probably do it anyway.

I was taught by my parents that my outward appearance was the most important. I learned through Mormonism that our hearts were even more important. Through my doing, I have learned to judge less (I never said I was perfect). I have been humbled countless times. I don’t have a problem telling my kids I don’t know, but there are days when I wish I had all the answers. My parents didn’t have all the answers. They were just making the best choice they could make based on their collective experience.

In personal essay writing I spend a lot of time reflecting. It is wrought with pain, shame, guilt, and forgiveness. Once I learned how to forgive myself, I could let go of the past. On November 16, 2021, my essay titled Not Me will be published online. I’ll share the link once it goes live. In the essay, I made a choice I NEVER imagined I would experience.

I write about my life experiences to share the things I have learned in hopes that it could lift another up and out.

We have this one life to live. I hope you choose to let go and keep on keepin’ on.

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