I am not one to normally talk about myself. I find it much easier to hear about you, talk about my kiddos or even the weather. But, today I am going to introduce myself to you. Those of you that know me well, can skip this and come back tomorrow for an entry about my first love. And no, it's not going to be about chocolate =)
Well, I am a 38 year old daughter to loving parents who have been together for 41 years, sister to two amazing women, wife to an incredible husband for 10 years and Momma to five unique and creative kiddos.
As the middle daughter/sister I found myself being the peacemaker, wanting everyone to like me and always having someone to hang with. I am blessed to call both of my sisters friends. My mother and I have had a good relationship with a few challenges along the way. My father has always been someone I can talk to and relate to...we are more alike than I'd like to admit at times.
Ever since I was a little girl I wanted to be a nurse or a teacher. I told my Pop that I would be a nurse and wanted to keep my promise until I visited him in the hospital and nursing home after his stroke. I realized I could not be a nurse. So, I pursued teaching. I loved babysitting and working in the church nursery. I enjoyed helping the elementary teachers in the small Christian school when I was in high school.
After I graduated from high school I found myself a unwed teenager. My choices allowed natural consequences that I was afraid would hinder or halt my desire to go to college and get my degree. I did have to set aside my longing to go away to college, by staying home and attending a local community college and small Christian college, but I graduated with honors in four years.
I was engaged twice prior to marrying my husband, Rick. Once to our oldest son's father and once to a man I thought God had sent my way as a sort of Knight in Shining Armor. Unfortunately, his armor was tarnished and God had other plans. Plans, that then I resented, sure I was going to be single forever and that Josh would never have a Daddy or a family.
My faith in God wavered a bit during the time between my broken engagement and meeting Rick, but I always knew He had a plan for me. I was saved as a young teenager, but didn't immediately have a relationship with Christ. I knew He was my Savior, but I was growing up in a very legalistic church, thinking that God would love me if I followed certain steps to holiness...tithing, church attendance, visitation, Bible reading and prayer time. If one of those was missing I felt sure that God was looking down at me disdainfully, withholding blessing due to my performance.
I learned through my personal Bible study that it is not about what I do outwardly, but the inward transformation that leads to an intimate relationship with Jesus. It was freeing and it lead me to a new church and a new level of commitment to Christ.
I taught 2nd grade for 6 years at a local Christian school and was so blessed to be part of a ministry that lead so many young people to Christ. I was part of the local church and met some of my best friends during those years, one of which introduced me to Rick.
I never thought of myself as being a stepmom or part of a blended family, but God has other plans and always knows what is best.
Even though, it has not been a smooth journey and there has been many valleys and uncertain moments, I would not trade being married to Rick and momma to Josh, Devin, Cody, Kari and Noah for anything.
And I am in a new venture in my life.....grandmother or MoMo as I am called to a beautiful baby boy, Kaysen Jace who arrived in May 2010. He is a perfect picture of God's redemption and love for us and the world. He is growing so nicely and is as cute as can be. I love him fiercely.
At this time in my life, I am getting ready to reenter the educational field, looking to get state certified to be able to teach in the public school system where we currently live. We are in a place right now where we are living with my parents while Rick finishes his degree. When he graduates we will both be degreed educators and are looking forward to being able to teach together and have summers with the kiddos.
As always God is working and showing me when and where I need to trust Him more. And I am enjoying the journey.