Sitting here, Sunday evening, my heart rests easy tonight. After a blissful Mother's Day weekend, I feel so very fortunate to be celebrating this holiday. Our weekend could not have been more perfect in the laziest of ways. Friday night we watched a movie with friends; having ourselves a grand night in talking over chocolate chip cookies instead of paying attention to what was on-screen. Saturday morning we got up and I made pancakes - banana for the girls and chocolate chips for me and Raleigh. I have a funny feeling that if I want to keep feeding them healthy food I'm going to have to learn to like bananas over chocolate...I still have some time before they figure out what chocolate tastes like, right? That afternoon we hit up the local YMCA for some fun in the sun. Our favorite part of the day was after we swam and the girls sat on top of us drinking their juice. They were so peaceful and we couldn't be happier to have them next to us. That evening, Raleigh and I had a date night - the classic dinner and a movie that ended with what else - dark chocolate yogurt with crushed Oreos and hot chocolate syrup drizzled on top. Yum. Friends, I was so grateful on Mother's Day to be woken up by two smiling girls and a sweet husband. To hold them in my arms instead of viewing them through a plastic isolet was icing on the chocolate cake (which I did in fact, have after lunch!). It was a wonderful reminder of just how far we've come. Our girls are growing up so fast and I am so grateful to call myself their mother. So much sweeter than any piece of chocolate, I must say.

Being a mom is truly a gift from God.

Maralee, Me, & Adeline on Mother's Day

In church on Sunday, I sat beside my sweet friends that have also celebrated motherhood. Our preacher reminded us that Mother's Day isn't always a day of celebration for some ladies. It can be a day of grief and a reminder of what was lost or never started. Some women, like our friend April, have struggled with infertility. Or, like my friend Stephanie, they have lost a child through miscarriage. Stephanie, after much prayer and consideration, has asked me if she could share her story of loss with all of you. I was so proud of her being vulnerable enough to share her story because I know she isn't alone. I know watching other mothers celebrate yesterday might have been dreadfully hard for you to endure.

Stephanie with her sweet daughter and husband

For me, as a mom that was very unsure if she would get to celebrate a second Mother's Day this time last year, I want to encourage you with hope and love. In the middle of heartache and loss, our Jesus shows us His love. He shows it through the storms of life and the clear skies. His love is uncontainable and it carries us through our days, no matter how lazy or busy they may be.  I hope that if you need an extra dose of God's love today, take heart in Ephesians 3:17-19, "Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God."

Does anyone out there have a story similar to Stephanie's?  We would love to hear.  Stay tuned for Stephanie's post next week.

Till next time, let your light shine!

Blessings, christen