I feel like I have so much to say and I'm not sure where to start :). I am going to be breaking up this post into two because it was going to be way too long :). This one is just an overflow of my heart right now, and the next will be updates on my goals for this year!
The death of my brother is still very interesting to me. As I've mentioned before, it doesn't seem real. And even after 2 months, it still doesn't seem real. I still have dreams about him a few times a week, and I think that's the way for me to deal with it right now. I'm not sure why. This past week I have probably thought about the reality of him not being here more than ever before, but it's still not completely real to me. I guess it'll just take more time. And, it may never hit me as strongly as I think it should... I'm not sure what to think about it. I think maybe knowing that he is in a place where he's not suffering anymore brings me peace and that's all I need. Only God knows when/if it'll be time to "break down."
After having the cramping that I had a few weeks ago, Robert and I felt that it was time to go ahead and stay home. We felt that I was too stressed and at the time it wasn't good for the baby because it was too early to go into labor!! As soon as we made that decision, a huge weight was lifted. It's not that I didn't enjoy my class or the school (it's a wonderful school with great kids, families, teachers, and administration), it's just that I knew that my heart was here at home now and I was having a hard time keeping up with the preparation and things (because even though I only taught 3 days a week, it's still a lot of preparation!). I also knew that I had many things that I still needed to do here before Levi's birth, and wanted a chance to do them (as well as get some rest time in before having another newborn).
So far being home has been amazing. It hasn't been easy necessarily because last week Ethan had a bad ear infection and was clingy all week, and I'm not sleeping great, but it is right. This is where I'm supposed to be. This is where my heart is. I'm supposed to be the one who takes care of my kids when they are sick. I'm supposed to be the one who holds and loves on them for hours when they just want to be held and rocked. I'm supposed to be the one that makes meals for them. I'm supposed to be the one to discipline, train, and teach them. It's my job, and I love it. It's not easy... in fact, it's one of the hardest jobs (Robert says he couldn't do it!). But, it is what God has called me to. For the first time in my life I'm at peace with where we are and feel that we are finally doing all that God has created us to do. We aren't ready for the next move anymore... We're no longer in transition. We have moved so many times that we haven't known what it's like to just be. Now I know what that feels like. God has made it clear that He has placed us here, and we're content with that.
I feel that we are blessed beyond our wildest imagination and that we don't deserve it. I have an amazing, wonderful, supportive husband who would do anything for me and his kids. Our kids, though trying at times, are beautiful, sweet, loving, funny, adorable... This house... it's amazing and I would never have imagined that we'd end up here. I get to stay home and be the mommy I have always wanted to be. God has provided for our needs and many of our wants, and it's honestly hard to understand why.
As I've said many times before, my desire is to glorify God through all of the blessings that He has given us. I don't want to ever feel as though I'm entitled to these things or that we deserve them. I don't want to ever take them for granted. He gave them and we desire, in return, to share them with others.
We are also blessed with such amazing friends. I have learned the true value of friendship more in the past two months than in my lifetime. When we needed help, our friends were there. In fact, they still are. The camp has become more unified over the past six or so months than I have ever seen it. I'm amazed at the work that God is doing here and just pray that the areas where Satan is trying to get a food hold, God would be victorious. I know He will.
I love that my kids are so loved here. I love that if I need someone to watch them or play with them, there are many people I can call... and they want to do it. I loved that when I was worried that I was going into labor, my wonderful friend came over to help me get my house into some kind of order. I love that another wonderful friend of mine came and picked up my dirty laundry last week and brought it back the next morning washed, dried, and folded. And she wouldn't let me tell her no :). And when I was put on a couple days of "bed rest," a friend brought me a bunch of movies because she knew I didn't have a way to watch TV. I love that we are a community of Christ followers doing what God has called us to do- love each other. I only hope that I can be that friend/family member to others as they are to me.
Life hasn't been easy since Robert and I got married six years ago. We were young and stupid and made a lot of mistakes (mostly financial!!) that have made things tough. But, God's grace is sufficient for our stupidity, and we have learned so many lessons through those mistakes. One thing that is great, though, is that even though life has been tough, our marriage has pretty much always been strong. Very rarely do we have issues... and when we do, they are resolved within the same day! I am blessed with an amazing life partner and I couldn't ask for more in a husband! Our marriage isn't perfect and will always need some improvement, but ultimately we both desire to love and serve each other to the best of our ability and know that we can always improve... and we seek that improvement. Which, I think is what makes a strong marriage. We have many more years to work on it!! :)