Here’s My Heart

Hey Y’all!  So my intention was to pound out a “day in the life” post today, bringing you into my life and the daily realities that come with raising twins but then yesterday I read the post of one of my favorite blog reads and it plagued me almost all day bringing about this post.  In it, the blogger wrote about “mom blogs” and how some mom blogs put out an air of perfection – immaculate homes, immaculate kids, form, fit, and function all rolled into one little perfect world.  I’m not arrogant enough to think she was talking about me buutt, having a a diy blog with “picture perfect” photos of my home plastered across one of it’s pages and “outfit” posts which have me posing in my recent sewing concoction smiling without a care in the world, it made me a little self-conscious.  Typically, I’m not one to care what people think of me.  In saying that, I’m a people-pleaser and I’m very sensitive to the thoughts of others.  I guess what I’m saying is please, please, please don’t ever, ever think that because I seem to always be pounding out projects of some sort or another or always on the go, a super-mom, that that’s entirely what my life is made of.
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I will admit though, my life is pretty darn perfect.  Not in “perfect” as the world defines it but perfect in that I’ve been blessed with a bountiful life, I’ve been given lots of talents my our Creator (we all have!), and I have good people surrounding me.  I have an incredible husband and two amazing adorable little girls with another little scooter on the way.  I love my house and I love filling it with pretty things and making it homey.  That said, it’s not always clean…scratch that, it’s never completely clean.  I have a really good cleaning schedule I’m pretty good at adhering to (AND I married a clean freak…borderline OCD is he) but the pictures you see on “Our Current Nest” are not typical and NOT how our house looks daily.  Proof:
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I’ve dealt with my share of struggles in this life.  We had a miscarriage shortly after marriage followed by four years of infertility (a story I’ll share soon!)  I lost both of my parents at age 21 – one to suicide and one to a crumbling relationship.  I won’t go on because I know that we all have trials and it’s no fun to read about them.  However, I know that out of pain comes beauty, love, and joy when you unite your pain to the cross.  My joys have overshadowed the dark spots in my life one hundred fold and I know that I’m not the only one who can say that.  :)

On a little bit lighter note, two of the most commonly asked questions/comments I get told are “How do you do all you do with twins?” and “Are they adopted?/How did YOU carry and birth two?!/You’re waaay too skinny to birth twins!”, considering that two babes coming out of a stick like me aren’t very likely.  Let me clarify for my own sanity…

1)  The girls take two naps per day and they sleep at the exact same times everyday, a routine I established when they were three months old.  That gives me about 3+ hours everyday to do what I want as a stay-at-home mom.  I usually spend their first nap picking up around the house and their second I spend doing something I enjoy – painting, sewing, etc…  Some days, especially since I’ve been pregnant, I spend one of their naps sleeping.  I’m not always doing, doing, doing.  However, I am the daughter of a hard-working farmer and I’d be remiss to tell you that I didn’t inherit that hard-working spirit.  I watch zero hours of TV per week (unless I get sucked in to the “Bachelor/Bachelorette” Monday nights) only because I’d rather be doing something else and probably also because we get 11 measly channels.  If we had HGTV, I’m positive it’d be a different story.  The girls are old enough now where they play with each other and keep each other entertained, meaning that during the morning between their early rise and nap, I now have more time to get stuff done.  I could play with them all day but I love the bonding they get by playing alone with each other…and I love having more time to do my own stuff.  Had we one child, I’m sure that wouldn’t be the case but such is the blessing with two at once.  I know as you browse the pages and projects on this here blog that it might seem that I can conquer the world and paint twenty pieces of furniture in a day but I’ve been writing here for three years and so doing all I’ve done in that large amount of time really isn’t that impressive.  :)
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[Here’s what she thinks of the rug I slaved over.]

2)  I’m pretty thin and I hate talking about it lest you think I’m a narcissistic jerk but I’m going to anyway.  I absolutely HATE when post-partum moms exclaim that they “fit into their pre-pregnancy jeans two weeks after baby!!!!!” because I know that so many moms struggle with even fitting into the jeans they have saved for post-partum.  Sorry if you’ve done that (chances are you didn’t mean to offend) and I know it’s such an area of pride, and rightly so, but being sensitive to others you’ll never hear from me how long it took me to do so.  I am lucky that I slimmed down so quickly after birthing the two babes but guess what?  I breastfed both exclusively and the calorie-burning equivalent of that is like running a mile everyday (don’t quote me but it’s something like that.)  I know I didn’t look like I gained much weight during my pregnancy but believe it or not, I gained almost 50 pounds!  For a tiny-boned girl like me, that’s a lot!  Growing up I was so very thin.  Not because I didn’t eat because I did…like two horses.  Ask my mom.  I drank wrestlers’ weight gainer powder (disgusting fyi) everyday just to look “normal” like everyone else.  I wasn’t teased in my school because of it, thank God, but I can remember walking out onto the gym floor of another school as a cheerleader in middle school and hearing the jeers of some of the girl fans of the opposing team calling me “anorexic”…in my naiveté I had no clue what that meant until I researched it at home that night only to break down in tears.  Later, in high school, I had a saleswoman in Cache relate and tell me she used to be teased for being so skinny but “don’t worry honey, you’ll appreciate it one day” and it meant the world to me.
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  I’d love to steal some of those hips off of any of you or snatch up some of those “curves” but I am what I am and that’s that.  Praise God.  I’m alive, I can walk, see, make…

Anyway, I’m sorry if you click  over here for diy happiness and if I’m boring a hole into your head right now but my chest has been heavy the past day with this junk and it just feels so good to throw it out there.  It’s me.  I’m not perfect.  My life isn’t “perfect”.  But I love it.  I love making things and I love writing and inspiring others.  I never want to show-off, only to show that with a handful of change, you can make your home and your wardrobe pretty too! 

Anyway, we’re halfway into naptime and if you’ll excuse me, my bedroom is a wreck, my kitchen floor is in desperate need of a sweep not to mention the piled up dishes and full dishwasher and the shirt I donned last night that C threw up all over – gag me - so I’ll be going now.  I hope you all have a wonderful, blessed day whether it’s chasing four kids around a messy house, packing your life up to head back to another semester of college, maybe breaking out a paint brush, or just trying to get through another work week.  God bless!

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You are beautiful my beloved, there is no flaw in you – Song of Solomon 4:7

28 comments

  1. Oh how good of you to share your struggles. You are a beautiful soul!

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  2. I love you and your beautiful heart.

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  3. Thank you so much for sharing!

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  4. Oh Sheena... My heart was heavy too, when I read that quote (if I'm thinking of the same blog post as you) and I really think it was probably meant to be an absurd caricature of what some blogs are like, it really did draw a striking parallel to recent posts of yours. And I think that one reason that I've never thought of yours as one of *those* absurdly perfect blogs is because I know you have twins and I KNOW what that's like, and I know that even amidst DIY projects, I'm absolutely sure there's mess and craziness in your life! For some reason, others can't always see past the well-cropped photos that don't include toy-strewn floors, or the fact that *maybe* you just kicked all the toys to the side to take that particular picture! And honestly, not everybody gets relief by blogging about the absolute crazy - personalities differ, and I imagine that lots of people hate it when I post about all the stupid poop antics we encounter in my house...

    I really do appreciate you sharing your struggles, and know that I'm praying extra hard for you today! I love seeing all that you're able to do even with twins to wrangle, because it gives me a little bit of hope that one of these days things will calm down enough for me to do a little more! And then I remember that when I have an hour of child-free time, I usually spend almost all of it cooking - we all have our loves, and you mentioned a while ago on your blog that the DIY things are your first love and that that's what this blog is for.

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  5. Oh Sheena, you are the best. I love your blog, I love your positive spirit and all of your projects truly inspire me (this coming from a mom blogger who is only ever complaining on my own blog, I love seeing what you're working on- it encourages me because I KNOW your days are crazy like mine!)

    Keep the DIYs coming and never stop blogging because I would just be sad.

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  6. Love everything about this post!

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  7. Sheena, this is one of my favorite posts from you. I've always considered your blog inspiring in so many ways....but never because you put out the impression of this perfect life. It's something I'm always conscious of as a DIY blogger too and I hope and pray that no one ever visits my e-space and gets the perfect home/life/wife/mother impression the post you're referencing (I think) talked about. We love that you share your DIY super skills and those easy sewing tutorials....it makes us feel like we can go out and do it too. You share plenty of "Keeping it real" moments that let us know your life not perfect but also that's it's really beautifully blessed.

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  8. Sheena, you inspire me. There are moments of incredible pain, but also incredible beauty in life (like you said, look at the cross). This has to be one of my favorite posts from you. You are beautiful!!

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  9. I just clicked over here from Ana's, but wanted to thank you for your beautiful post.

    (And as someone who has had my own fair share of "anorexic" comments -- I'm sending a hug your way.)

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  10. Sheena, this is one of the reasons I(& others too) love your blog. You write from the heart and radiate happiness in your words. It can be so hard putting yourself out there for people to judge, but I am thankful you are willing to. I always leave your blog with a smile, whether its a funny quip, your adorable girls or an idea growing from your DIY projects- it's easy to see you make a lot of effort to be thankful and rejoice in your life and the blessings you've been given- and more people should appreciate that. We live in a world that celebrates the opposite, your blog is a breath of happy fresh air! :) So thank you for that! Xo

    Ps- when they figure out how to share curves and hips with fellow bloggers, I will gladly donate a lil something to your cause! ;)

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  11. one of my favorite posts on the internet!!!! Definite lots of lessons to be learned here!!!! love love!!

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  12. Thank you for sharing...I think we all have a tendency to think that other people have it more together or are more successful or are better at things than we are (etc) and the Internet has a way of hiding the less glamorous parts of life. I've never had that reaction to your blog as I have three little kids and I know how crazy life is with little ones (how can it not be?). We all have our share of crosses to bear but also lots of joys to shout to the rooftops.
    I'm just glad to find another Catholic mama who loves home decorating as much as I do!

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    1. thanks elizabeth. it's true. the internet is great at hiding if you want it to...sad if you do.
      i love that you love decorating too!!! i was browsing your blog at bedtime last night and i'm excited to see what you create!!! :)

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  13. Thanks for sharing Sheena! I can totally relate and actually wrote a very similar post just a couple weeks ago! Perfection is finding love in bearing our cross : ) love your blog!

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  14. Wonderful post! Your blog is always so inspiring, and I figure that if you can accomplish so many cool things with two babies, I can at least try with one! :)

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    1. Thanks Amanda! It's music to my ears to hear that I'm accomplishing what I'm set out to write for!! And yes, I love my girls but sometimes I sit back and think of how much more I could get done with one! You go girl! :)

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  15. I just want to know how you got your twins on the same nap schedule at three months! :) mine are 3 weeks and I have noooo idea what I'm doing... Please? :)

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    1. Haha! I know how you feel! (P.S. I was going to respond via email but in case anyone else is wondering, I thought I'd comment back!)
      Starting around their second month I'd just lay them down for naps at the same time - usually 1.5 to 2 hours after they woke up for the morn and then around 2-3 in the afternoon. Usually naps were given right after a feeding so both were already drowsy. I just laid them in their shared crib (swing/makeshift co-sleeper/whatever we were using to get them to sleep) at the same time. Usually one would drift right to sleep and I'd have to rock the other one to sleep. It took a good month of just keeping them on the same sleeping schedule, doing what I did above, but eventually it got to the point where I'd just lay them down and they'd both pass out with maybe a little fussing. In saying that, there have been a few times when one refused to nap and my schedule was thrown off but not many. Now they won't go to sleep, or have a harder time falling asleep, unless the other is in the crib over. :) Good luck!!! You can do it!!!

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  16. This was beautiful, thanks for sharing.

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  17. I enjoyed your take on the buzz floating around the internet right now. I'm afraid because of it so many women are going to force themselves to show the messy just to prove a point in their defense. There are some who see the dishwater spotted glass half empty and some photograph the glass of water half full. It's all perception and I hope we don't put undue pressure on ourselves trying to explain ourselves.

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  18. Thank you for sharing your heart with us! I love your blog and have always found it inspiring.

    And ... If you ever want to share your cleaning schedule, I'm in desperate need of help in that area!

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  19. You're an inspiration Sheena! Your story sounds incredible. I'm glad to get to know you a bit better and thanks for sharing your heart. :)

    Annie XO

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    1. Thanks Annie! :) That really and truly means a lot.

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  20. Beautiful, beautiful post. It seems a lot of feelings got hurt in this silly dust-up and I'm so sorry yours were among them. I don't think we've met so I doubt my post that started this whole thing (http://moxiewife.com/2013/08/glimpses-of-momentary-victory/.html) is the one you're referring to but if so, please accept my apologies. I was writing in the early morning, before the coffee had hit the bloodstream, and with an infant in the house. In fact, blogs just like yours are the ones that inspire me that most so thank you! I'm so glad I stumbled upon your little home away from home tonight and look forward to following along. Peace and love!

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  21. As I always like to remind myself - everything looks better from 100 yards away.

    I ended up over here from YHL, then got interested in your What I Wore posts, mostly for when you alter clothes... because nobody is shaped like a manikin! I always worry about altering things (clothes/furniture/anything) because I think everyone will know and be able to see right away that it wasn't "properly" done. So those same items go unused or are left in the store. Meanwhile when I see the afters of all of your ventures I find they look great and I would have been none the wiser had I not seen the before.

    I find blogs, or people's posts on Facebook/Twitter/Instagram, provide that 100 yards. And while it makes you look spectacular and provides a filter for your warts, it can do the same for the rest of us too.

    Don't sweat it, most people won't even notice - should be all of our mantra!

    BTW - You are really a wee slip of a thing, I don't think I really thought about it before, but that picture from when you were a kid is mind blowing.

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    1. It's true that looking at someone's online life is like looking at them from 100 yards away...it's hard to tell at that vantage point what exactly you're seeing and therefore hard to make a sound judgement. :) Such a good analogy!

      It's funny that you worry about altering things because of the imperfections you see in the afters! I actually think about that a lot! I see things no one notices and never will notice! I think you should throw that worry aside and jump in! The water's nice! Haha!

      And one more thing, I absolutely love how you described me as a wee slip of a thing! Never heard that before! Haha! Made my night! :)

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving your sweet comment!

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  22. I had a miscarriage in June after struggling for over a year to get pregnant. We are lucky to be pregnant again but I always wonder if the shoe is going to drop or this time we will get a healthy babe. I appreciated this post.

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A penny for your thoughts? Or how about you give your two cents? Whatever the change, I'd love to know what you think and I try my best to respond! If your name is linked to your email, I'll hit you up there. If not, check back! I'd love to see you again anyway! :)