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Kids and What I Learned Today – Our People

What if?"

This past weekend I learned how much we are not in control.  One day, when this is over, I will share with you my worries, issues and prayers – but for now I can’t, I just can’t….I can’t even write this without crying.   I pray to God that his plan has a happy ending for our family.

I started the following post in 2012 and didn’t complete it until tonight.  Because tonight it rang more true than ever.  Tonight it hurt me knowing what is to come, and this is one of my many worries.

This past summer has been particularly travel heavy with both Ben and I [summer of 2012].  He has been to Russia twice this summer for 3 weeks each trip, and then sometimes when he came back I’d have to leave for a client onsite.  In two instances this summer we had to leave our kids in the care of the grandparents because of our travel overlapped.  This was really stressful for Ben and I, it wasn’t something we wanted to do but had to do.  We are forever grateful that our parents are able to step in for us, but it still doesn’t make it easier on us.

But until this last week [at the time when I wrote this] , I didn’t realize how tough it was on our kids; Em 3 and LilMan 5. They seemed to take it in stride as I explained to them that I had to travel to Ohio and they are going to get to stay with Grandma and Grandpa this afternoon until dad gets home.  It struck me when I reflected on an exchange between Em and I:

“But Mom, we won’t have any people!”

“Em, Grandma and Grandpa were my people when I was growing up.  They’ll be your people until Dad gets home in a couple of hours.”

“Oh, okay.”

Apparently Ben and I are her biggest fans, we are her people, we are her entourage :)

What I learned today:  In marriage, we are to put our partners first (and they do the same for us), but with kids we, the parents, must always put the kids first – always!  ALWAYS!  We are their people. We are their biggest fans, their biggest advocates, their biggest – everything.  If we don’t put them first we are failures, we are to blame…these are big shoes to fill!  This is why Ben and I look to God to help us – we need Our Father,  “Who Art In Heaven” to provide use guidance.  And I’ll be upfront, I don’t know what the F’ I’m doing, I pray everyday I give guidance to our children to be better than me and we don’t screw them up.

  • Chelle Chapman

    You are “Looking to God” sweetheart, IF you keep your eyes UP, HE will keep your feet forward! Of course, as your children grow, they will gain a “mind of their own” & ALL you do/did will be just a memory. BUT, if they are raised in a loving, God fearing home, your chances are THAT much better. None of us are guaranteed anything as we raise our children but for now, Stephanie, you ARE doing the right thing by letting God lead your house & home, you, your marriage AND the rearing of those Beautiful Little Gifts you were given by Him!! He wont let you screw this up!!

    • http://www.grinninglikeanidiot.com/ Stephanie

      Thank you Chelle,
      Your words brought hope and tears to me. I need all the support you can give. I’m running out of icepacks for my eyes :)…

      • Chelle Chapman

        God Bless you & your family Stephanie!! You all will forever be in my prayers!!!

  • faigie

    The truth is that in marriage with kids it is very helpful to put the marriage before the kids. I’m not talking about ignoring kids G-d forbid. But, when kids see us making our marriages the most secure, they feel secure. Our kids should definitely be put before most other things, but not before our marriagaes.

    • http://www.grinninglikeanidiot.com/ Stephanie

      Hey Faigie,
      I agree with you 100%, today my parents celebrate their 47th wedding anniversary, Ben’s parents are celebrating their 46th year; we have great leaders to show us and we know what we need to do and how to guide our children.
      Sunday I found out that my husband, against all of our wishes, his included, is having to go away for work for 9 months, I don’t know where and I don’t know if he’ll be back. Most days I’m crying or hiding my tears. These days, Ben and I are thinking of our kids and what I have to sacrifice while he is away and what he is unable to give while he is away. So for now, I have to give double what I have – I don’t know if I can do it, but I have no choice but to try. I pray for your support, I pray for help, I pray….

      • faigie

        Oh my gosh, how awful. You don’t know if he will be back, is he in the military?

  • http://www.tidbitsofexperience.com/ crystal

    I hope whatever your dealing with gets better. I can feel your pain and frustration from your words. Your kids will adapt and be stronger for all of this. It sounds like you and your husband are doing what you must right now. I’ll keep you in my prayers.
    You’re right we do have to put our husbands and kids first in life, but sometimes putting them first means sacrificing for everyone involved. I have faith that you and him will find a way to make it happen.

  • Lynda Self

    Awww….the things children say that help us remember who we are supposed to be. Things are going to be alright.

  • Michelle

    My DH and I also travel a LOT for work. Ill be leaving for a week next week. It’s so hard on our son!

  • OyVeyaDay

    It is amazing how much we learn from the stressful times. I have always counted my kids as lucky to have grandparents (and an aunt) nearby with whom they can stay. The kids have stayed with them often (sometimes because we couldn’t be there due to our daughters illness during her 8 weeks of life, and at other times for purely fun reasons). Because of this, our kids think of my parents and sister as their “people.”

    It sounds like you are dealing with a lot, but count yourself lucky that your kids have “people” other than you who show them love and accept them into their home. It may be stressful now, but in the long run, your kids will be better for it.

    You are in my thoughts!

  • Gabrielle Presley

    I love this :) It’s so true and a good reminder to put our little ones first – every time. I have been guilty of putting my husband first quite a few times and I hope to severely limit that in the future. Thanks for the reminder :)

    • Stephanie

      Hey Gabrielle,

      As a wife and mother it’s a delicate balance…Ben is my partner. I feel like we are in a two legged race, tied together and when one falls the other falls, only together and in insynch can we run. I haven’t posted this yet, he is going to be deployed, so I’m thinking a lot of what it will be like to run without my other leg (so to speak) :) and how I’m going to carry these kids without my other half. I’m still tearing up thinking about all of this. I’m coming to terms, but I can’t imagine what it’s going to be like and how my kids will handle it – we haven’t told them yet….