We just might make it. . .

We are officially on our summer break, so I'm hoping to get above my posting average of zero posts per month.

This year has peeled away another layer of selfishness, perfectionism, and pride that definitely needed to go, but oh my has it been painful. And it's difficult to figure out how to write about it in such a public space. How can I be both authentic and encouraging about this year full of trial, struggle, beauty and strength, depression, anxiety, blow ups and melt downs, and even laughter and triumph? How can I write with honesty about the hard spaces, knowing that all of the children will likely find this blog sooner or later?

This quote from Rene Tougas resonates deeply with my struggle today:

So why do this? Why blog about the hard stuff.  Because when people keep hard stuff hidden, especially those of us with a public voice, there's a tendency to believe I'm the only one. In my pain its so easy to believe the lie that I'm the only one experiencing this. And that's lonely. In your pain, you may feel likewise. 
But you're not the only one. 
Crisis, failures, and disappointments involving our children, marriage, finances, and health; you are never the only one experiencing the hurt, confusion, and sorrow that defines, in part, what it means to be human. 
You're not the only one walking around with a box of tissues. You're not the only one feeling the sting of regret. You're not the only one wanting to take back words and actions. You're not the only one needing to forgive yourself. You're not the only one looking for the path in pea-soup fog.
Hard Stuff, Rene Tougas 

But actually, this is not a new struggle for me (or anyone who blogs about their personal life), so probably I should just get over it. I worry so much about about that balance between an upbeat attitude, realness (it's totally a word), and other people's privacy too, that I end up writing nothing. Curse you, perfectionism!!

Anyway. People quietly ask how "the transition" is going, and I always want to laugh because summing up what it has been like to bring a sixteen year old into our family in a few chit chat sentences is nearly impossible. It's been the hardest thing I've attempted so far.  It's also been deeply satisfying to persevere and start to see the fruits of all the teaching and patiently reassuring and line-drawing and hand-holding and deep-breathing.

We've turned a corner, though, in this past month and it has been such a relief to have easier, cozier days. I can start to look back on the past eight or so months and see the lessons we are learning together and the many ways I've grown as a parent. Over and over, I had the opportunity to practice unconditional love for my entire stressed out family, but especially for this precious child-woman who worked very hard to prove that I would let her down.  I have honed the fine art of using the question as a parenting tool and it has made a powerful difference in our tense, attachment-disorder-triggered situations. I have also learned all over again how to lean on my faith, and how to reach out for support from the people who love me. My husband and I have deepened our understanding of how to parent like a team. My three little children are learning how to see past a person's behavior to what their true need is. My older child has learned/is learning that we are constant in our love and forgiveness, despite the mess of family life.

We have all experienced that family is truly beautiful - and something worth fighting for.


  1. living into and acknowledging the tensions. This is lovely :) Keep writing. 2 weeks left and then we should offically actually try to hang out for longer than a "chit chat" session. :)

    1. <3 Thank you! Official hanging out sounds great, although I thought we squeezed quite a bit into our chit chat. :)


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