… movement!

I thank God for our open adoption…. we have an amazing birth mother who is wonderful and open. I literally couldn’t ask for a better birth family than the one we have.

She and I text everyday, we share things, we’re each other’s support, and backbone when dealing with things many others don’t and wouldn’t understand. It’s a balancing act that, so far, we have handled really well.

I love, love, love!!!! this relationship, how close in distance we are, and how soon she created a birth plan because I feel as if I get to experience Holland growing with her.

I woke up to a text this morning that let me know my sweetheart is moving. She’s an early riser and moves, moves, moves. It’s the sweetest thing in the entire world.

There isn’t much about handling H that I’m afraid of. I’m pretty sure I have the holding, changing, diapering, and feeding situation down. I’m afraid I won’t “move” fast enough. I’m worried that I’m still immature in areas that she’ll need me to be wise and full of knowledge about. I’m worried that I’ll won’t walk the beam of disciplinarian and gracious parent well. I’m terrified that my relationship with my daughter (!!!!) won’t grow as she/we grow.

I have a couple of friends with more than amazing relationships with their girls. I mean they are to be envied. I’m thankful that God has placed such women in my life to model after in ways that are foreign to me. And, I’m glad that I’ve formed my own relationships with their daughters to see their perspectives, too. It’s nice and as worried as I am, I’m thrilled! I talked with one of my girlfriends yesterday and she really, really encouraged me in areas that needed… growth. lol.

We’ve begun the hunt of everything Holland…. and, I’m thrilled. Already beginning to establish her style and think about how I want her to “appear” has taken over quite a bit. Things that I thought I would love for her to have are not as adorable or refreshing.

Balance. Balance. Balance.

The word I will repeat and the place I will seek for the rest of my life.

Balance in my marriage, in my person, and my role as a parent. Learning not to put so much pressure on myself to be perfect or too strict or too lax. But, to focus on building relationships with grace, love, patience, tolerance, and kindness. Learning to get to know H and T for who they are today and find the flexibility, patience, and forgiveness to evolve with them as they grow.

Oh, I’m eager to get to this beautiful place…. Thankful God has set me on this path. Thankful that He is given me everything that I’d hoped and longed for.

Keep moving Holland. Continue to grow strong and develop.
I’m doing the same out here, little one. Preparing for you as you prepare for me.

Mama loves you.

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… oh, to be good

I have a crazy strong desire to be good. at everything.

To be good at being who I am in every role God’s given me. And, good in terms of how God is defined as “good” – faithful, just, gracious, loving, etc. Not good in comparison to excellent which to me communicates more of how you do something versus what you are. (Which is a complete other beast because you know I’m a quasi-perfectionist, too!)

The frustration comes in when I rely on myself for that goodness to be displayed. The fact of the matter is, I’m not good. There is nothing naturally good within me. And, I continue, continue, continue to pray to be good but continue to fail. And, I mean fail miserably.

I’m (still) learning that praying for something is different than depending on God for that “thing” to come to life. Especially when it comes to personality character flaws/traits that we would like to improve. It’s so easy to be moved from a “God, please help to be patient today” place to an “Oh… GAWSH!!! I did it again!” place. I’m recognizing that the bridge that connects a desire pleaded for in prayer and that desire coming to life is dependence on God.

INTENTIONAL, MINDFUL “keep your mind stayed on Jesus” kind of dependence upon God.

That perfectionist in me who wants to be right in how I handle things, in what I say, and the decisions I make cause me trouble…. I am my own thorn in the side.

Today, I’m searching my heart for reasons WHY. Why do I want to be so good and great and perfect? Why is that desire so strong that I put unnecessary pressure on myself?

And, I’m encouraging, imploring, and  reminding myself… to trust and depend on God moment by moment. I’m giving myself space and room to err and receiving God’s grace when I do and embracing his love and spirit of  “I’m still here” to keep me depending on Him for each effort and outcome.

This is my Wednesday. These are my goals.

Grace, patience, forgiveness, love.
Love covers all things, all sins, all mistakes, all bad decisions, and nasty behaviors.

Loves covers it, forgiveness wipes it away, grace gives you another chance, and patience keeps you unified in peace.

… here’s to be good. 🙂 name

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… family

Growing up, I never once in a million years considered adoption as the way we would go about having our first child. Or, possibly any child we would welcome.

I never thought that having children would really be an issue.

Now. 6 months away from welcoming our first little on through open adoption and I couldn’t be happier. We have a wonderful relationship with our birth mother who we get to see and spend time with regularly! I literally couldn’t ask for a better set up!

To know that God planned this for us is amazing. I feel like I’ve been thrown the most spectacular, detailed surprise party. I feel so loved by Him; I’m grateful to be a part of this story He’s writing. It’s truly an honor.

I pray these six months go quickly! Last night I was talking to Thomas and writing her name over and over again……. I wondered how she would write her name, if she would be left handed or right handed, & what kind of student she would be.
{classic thoughts of a parent who doubles as an elementary school teacher!!}

I can’t wait until her next appointment where we get to see her, hear her heart beating, and find our her measurements!

… here’s to dreaming about a dream that’s quickly becoming a reality!

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… testimony tuesday!

So, you guys know I’m slightly obsessed with social media. Instagram, specifically, has been so wonderful to me throughout this adoption process and I have fallen in love with hastags.

Everyday of the work week has a hastag associated with it. For example, #mcm (man crush Monday) or  #tbt (throwback Thursday).

I’ve deemed Tuesdays as #testimonytuesday (Testimony Tuesday). We can use social media for good. For spreading the word of God and encouraging those around us, right?!
TESTIMONY TUESDAY

So, I’m excited!!!
Below, you will find a condensed portion of my testimony of our adoption. More in terms of growth and what I’ve learned. Hope you enjoy!!!

And, check out my Instagram (@amayes) for more goodness every Tuesday!

Everyday, I’m more and more overwhelmed and over the moon about Holland.

Not only because she is our baby or because I’ll finally be a mom; I’m overwhelmed because she is a testament to the faithfulness of God.

She is an answered prayer in so many ways already.

Because of her I know that God answers prayers at the perfect time, I know that he really will trade your ashes for beauty, and that He is the safest of safest places to find refuge and comfort.

We’ve learned to find peace in God while our world is turned upside down and hope when it feels as if light is far from you.

We’ve learned to ignore what we feel and rely on what we know – that God is real. He is good. And, He is always with you.

How grace gets you through and the most comforting place I’ve found is at the feet of my Savior.

This time has taught me patience, love, how to be good, and courageous. I’ve learned how to be more patient and respectful with my husband and how to not take everything so seriously.

Our adoption is much bigger than bringing a child into our home. It’s bigger than Thomas and I. It’s even bigger than our sweet girl.

Our adoption is about redemption. It’s about the power of God shaping us into worshippers. It’s showing the love, acceptance, and grace of God to others. It’s about putting “us” aside and trading our desires and wants for His.

Holland is the tangible result of God’s grace. His sovereignty. His promises fulfilled.

… here’s to trusting God with your deepest desires and learning to wait patiently for Him.

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… hello, love

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Oh, sweet girl.

I can’t believe that you’re a girl.
I can’t believe that we’re here.
That you’re ours.

You were an idea, a hope, and a prayer.
But, now you’re a girl. With a name and a mama who is about to go NUTS with preparing for you.

I was so afraid. Stalling and keeping the reality that this is actually happening at arms reach.

But, every time I’m still enough to think about what’s going on, when I’m praying, or just resting in the quiet & peace of God- I can’t stop the tears.

Holland.
I hope to be a great mama to you – I wonderful example of patience, grace, and love. I hope your daddy and I balance parenting well; teaching you to be responsible, yet adventurous and spontaneous. I hope we show you how to take risks and stand up for what you believe in.
I hope that we live our beliefs out loud… Loud & consistent enough for you to understand and believe that there is a Savior who accepts you no matter what you do and loves you more than you can imagine. Who offers you grace and forgiveness. Who answers prayers and never leaves your side. Who will willingly be live inside of you, guide you, redeem & save you – if you ask.

I thank God for you. For your health. For knitting you together so perfectly. For answering my prayers by giving me you.

I can’t wait for the day to tell you all about our story, our journey to you.

You have already humbled me.

Thankful that God honors his word. That He teaches faithfulness and trust.

“Blessed is she who believed that there would be a fulfillment of what had been spoken to her by The Lord.” Luke 1:45

…. Here’s to be held and comforted by Christ, to remaining steadfast and trusting a God who sees me with a clarity and love I can’t fathom.

Posted in faith, family, fertility, infertility, promises, scripture, the plan, what I love | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments

… all that I am

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I’m hurting tonight. Feeling guilty & horrible.

I had a rough day at at work- the classroom chewed me up and spit me out today.

These are times that I completely hate who I can be.

Those are the times I thank God for grace and I realize how human I am. How much in need of Christ’s blood I am. How sinful and unworthy I am.

Those are the times I am grateful for God’s graces. Innumerable chances. His love. His forgiveness.

Tough days call for an even tougher God who can cover it all. Grateful for the covering, for the ability to hide in Him, and find the power within him to be better.

It hurts to know that I again disappointed and didn’t love up honoring God in all that I did today. Hopefully, tomorrow I will be better.

Hoping that the hugs, apologies, sweet words, and encouragement that I dole out daily outweigh the ugly moments.

… here’s to undeserved grace and love.

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… peace in parenting

20131005-115010.jpg It feels as if our little one won’t be here for an eternity. It feels as if the next seven months will completely d r a g by…….. I know that’s not completely true but that’s how I’m feeling today.

I’m not as worried about being ready for the baby physically; s/he’ll have everything it needs when it gets here. (It doesn’t need much anyway at the beginning…. All the hoopla is really for me!)

I was looking at these pictures and realized how often I’ll be kneeling for years to come. How some days, it will come naturally for me to stoop down and tend to my child. I also realize that there will be moments when I’ll have to make a conscious effort to pause my own life and stoop down to be eye to eye with this little person who will spend their life looking up at me.

I want to be a good mom. And, parent who is balanced, loving, kind, and patient.
I want to balance fun/spontaneity with responsibility/maturity and forgiveness/grace with self-control/morality/boundaries in such a way that I teach enjoying life and the beauty of loving all people for who they are. I want to teach acceptance and freedom in being who God created us to be while modeling a teachable & submissive spirit.

I’m already praying for God to calm my heart and for me to live in His grace & peace. I believe He wants less law & more grace to rule my home & I below that just living and taking things day by day is the best game plan. But, that’s going to be so hard…..

I have some amazing mama-models who I know will help & pray with me in my fears and struggles. And, who have already given me such great mama-character to immolate.

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I believe that when we remain eye to eye, we teach our children that they are important to us. Their perspectives are important. Their issues and challenges are just as important as their successes. I believe that when our kids (& students, too!!) see that we take time to look at them in their eye and listen, as they grow they will take time to seek our perspectives about life.

One thing I’ve learned is that life is a journey…. One day is nothing, children are forgiving and model the purest form of love. And, each day God gives us another chance to live life again better than we did the day before.

So, I’m hoping that the grace, love, and forgiveness I pray to model daily for my child will be embraced and will display that same kindness towards me/us and those around them.

… Here’s to remaining eye to eye with our Heavenly Father and with the babies He gives us! … And, depending on God to be the mother He’d have me to be!

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