Being Known

These shoes make me smile every time I see them. A dear friend at one of my baby showers gave them to me. Knowing my love of Michael Jackson’s Thriller days, she knew I’d crack up over the shiny metallic silver shoes, envisioning them on my baby-to-be doing the moonwalk on our hardwood floors. This friend knows me well. We’ve laughed a lot together over the years, and possibly cried more together in public than any other friend I know. It seems like every time we would go out to breakfast together, one of us would run out of Kleenex as we shared the hard things of life.

When I look at these shoes I smile and I’m thankful, because I realize how good it is to be known. I also get a little teary as I’m in a season of life where so many things are new – new town, new community, and new role as a mom. I used to love the adventure of moving some place new and exploring my new surroundings and meeting new people. Yes, there were tears sometimes in the beginning, but after I got over that hurdle, I’d dive right in. Going to six different elementary schools in three different states will teach you how to be adaptable. But making friends as an adult – no, as a wife and as a mom of a new little guy – is exponentially more challenging.

Gone are the dorm-room and summer staff Young Life camp days when you have a new bestie after a few days of bonding. I think I took it for granted as a singleton when I was free to join every evening event or volunteer activity where relationships can be formed so quickly.

At this stage of my life, I feel like I am dating everyone, and it is exhausting. It amazes me how much more effort it takes to get things on the calendar, since the calendar is no longer my own. And when you only see someone once or twice a month, in the midst of babies crying and toddlers running under foot, not only does it take significant discipline to stay focused on a conversation, but it adds to the slowness of moving towards any sort of depth in a friendship.

I often sigh a deep internal sigh when people say, “When I first met you, I thought you were very reserved and quiet.” Oh, new friend, you have no idea. Friends that know me understand that I’d rather have a karaoke microphone in my hand on a Friday night than a glass of fine wine. There is silliness in me that needs to be expressed on a daily basis, or I will burst. It truly is a good thing that I have a little guy who likes to be entertained.

We all long to be known. It’s how God designed us. I just think that feeling is much more acute during this season. At times like these, it’s important for me to remember how God has provided amazing friendships in the past and IS forming new relationships in my life as I write this. Each time that I have moved, I have been given the gift of friendships. These friends are like precious stones that have added to the beautiful path on my journey. Just the other day, one of my new friends made the comment that my middle name should be “fun.” What a compliment, and what joy to know that I am in the process of being known.

500 Hairs

There are many things that have happened to me during pregnancy and post-pregnancy that I was not prepared for. I’m just going to believe that my friends forgot to tell me these things, or they thought it would be fun for me to discover them on my own. Like, for example, the hair loss.

It all began at about 3 months post-pregnancy. (I’m not using the word “post-partum”… cause what does that really mean, anyway?) While I was nursing, I’d start combing through my hair with my fingers and have clumps of hair in my hand. I started to just shake them onto the rug by my feet, but each brush of my hand revealed more and more hair. So, I began to make piles of it throughout the house (to collect later of course… because if there’s one thing a new mommy is good at, it’s cleaning the house, right?). Poor Carl would sit down in his chair in the living room and find one of my hair balls sitting politely on the coffee-table staring back at him, and he’d say “What’s this?” Oops. Sawry.

All the hairs that didn’t come out while I was pregnant, were now exiting my scalp with a vengeance. It’s like they couldn’t wait to get rid of me. And this went on for 3 months. I recently read that post-pregnancy, you can lose up to 500 hairs a day. Yes. 500. A normal person loses up to 150 a day. Who knew? (And who was the crazy intern who had to count all these hairs to come up with this scientific fact?)

I think I’ve now turned a corner. I even got a new shorter hairdo to clean up the mess of the Mommy-hair I had left. But during the crazy hair-loss stage, I feared I might start to look like my bald little baby and thought I should see what I’d look like with no hair. I know you want to see that picture, so here you go.

There’s no question. He’s much cuter with no hair.

But what would he look like with hair? I still can’t tell what color hair he’ll have since it’s all just peach-fuzz right now. So, like any other normal mom, I put some wigs on him to find out. Cast your vote. Do you like brown, blonde, or green?

Bonding and Barfs

It’s an amazing thing, the bond between a mother and child. I don’t think I’d put up with a friend, co-worker, boyfriend, parent, or spouse who barfed on me once a day. I mean, I’d be nice to them and buy them birthday gifts and stuff, but the barfing business would have to stop.