Hello, all my friends, family and supporters. I can’t believe I’m finally sitting here typing! Geez. I think about this blog almost every day. In the back of my mind, a little voice is there; whispering to me that there are stories untold, pictures not posted, “thank yous” left unspoken. The little annoying blog voice has been telling me to do a better job. So, here I am. I am pledging to myself that THIS year, I will not only blog about my current day to day happenings here in Bethlehem, I will go back and post pictures and tell old stories. I know that one day I’ll be in a place where I will need to see them typed out and recorded. Because, Mom Brain.
Let me go into Mom Brain a bit. So, I birthed this baby girl named Katherine Elizabeth in September 2015. She is a wonderful little pudgy thing with a superb sarcastic attitude and happy zest for life. I love her fiercely, and love how she adds to our family. However, in the past 18 months, her presence has added some personal difficulty. It’s not her fault, of course. For those who do not know (as it was hard for me to share, until recently), I struggled with post-partum depression for about 8 months after she was born. My zeal, energy, purpose, and strength all kind of melted into a puddle of tears and hot mess. Thankfully, after much prayer, the support of my amazing husband, exercise, and a new friendship, the Lord lifted me out of that dark place. To any Moms currently going through this and scared to share – please know that it won’t last forever. Force yourself to open up to someone, and let them carry you.
Katherine, as I said above, is pudgy, and loves to be held. She also loves to make messes! These things, plus chasing after two toddlers all day, equal total physical exhaustion. I already had issues with my spine from a bad car accident years ago, so these new developments have intensified already existing neck and back pain. It is not a fun place to be, at all. I am so glad I serve a God who is strong when I am weak. He sure gives me a lot of grace. Otherwise, I’d just give up!
So, it’s been a busy 18 months, and sadly the blog and email updates have fallen to the bottom of my to-do list. For those of you who have consistently and unconditionally supported us, I can’t thank you enough. I have so many prayer warriors on my side, too, asking God to give Kenneth and I the strength to thrive in this life that we’re living.
I am so happy to say that right now, I am in a place where I am so incredibly excited about each day’s opportunities. I am finally realizing the calling, direction, and “vocation” that God has placed in my heart for my children, my husband, and of course, the kids at JSB. It’s not that I’ve been drifting aimlessly the last two years, it’s just that God has been teaching me a LOT through it all. He has been refining me, humbling me, and filling me back up again. Amazing.
OK, enough emotional stuff. Now I am going to skip to the part where I post about a fun time we experienced. Today’s choice is the Christmas Tree lighting in Manger Square. This was such a wonderfully stressful, exciting and surreal night. With our awesome friends, we pushed through the crowd with babies on our shoulders, anxiously waiting with aching backs to see the enormous tree light up. Finally, it came alive, in all it’s tall splendor. Fireworks exploded and the hundreds of people – locals and tourists from all over the world, cheered. Seeing so many people gathered to celebrate the beginning of the season of Christ’s birth was overwhelming. Watching my children’s faces as they stared at that tree was…everything. I’ll never forget that feeling; being 50 yards away from where our Savior, the baby Jesus, was laid in a manger. Hearing carolers sing “Silent Night”; seeing my babies stare in wonder. It was like time stood still, and my heart was so full at that moment.
I could not feel more blessed to be able to live here, and experience things like this. Thank you, again.
More to come soon, and more in-depth JSB news to come in email form, as well. Love to you all!