To kick off the Lent season my family and I attended Ash Wednesday mass. It dawned on me as I was ironing my husband’s clothes that I was living out my dreams. Trust me, there are still A LOT of goals/dreams on my bucket list and I believe goals are fluid and you should constantly be chasing a goal, no matter how big or small that goal may be however, as I was finishing up his slacks I had a moment that stopped me in my tracks. When I pictured a family as a little girl I always dreamed of living in a subdivision. This may sound silly but hear me out. I grew up in the country where my closest friend was a few miles down the road and I had to ride my bike pretty far to go hang out with her. I definitely wouldn’t change that for anything but when I envisioned my little family I always wanted my kids to grow up in a subdivision with neighbors they could play with and ride their bikes around the cul-de-sac. I also wanted a fireplace. Again, this may sound silly but I always dreamed of cozying up next to the fire with my family and having a big Christmas tree to celebrate the holidays. Here I am living in a subdivision, in my house with a fireplace, with my dream man and perfect, healthy daughter.

Heading to church I told Eric how cool it was to see a dream come to fruition. As we were sitting in mass last night a woman gave me the best compliment to date (as a mother). She said, “How do you do it? How is your little girl so happy all of the time? You can tell she is raised in a happy home.” Is our house happy all of the time? No. Do Eric and I get into arguments? Yes. As I sat there and reflected on her question I was able to answer her honestly. I didn’t have the best pregnancy but I chose to stay happy. Trust me, I could list you 1,000 things that went wrong during my pregnancy or stressful events that occurred but I CHOSE happiness. My labor was really easy (#blessed) and a few hours later our precious bundle of joy arrived. I told this woman that my husband helps 50% of the time. I truly mean it’s 50% of the time. He sees my struggles or the nights I’m too exhausted to get out of bed to go ease her back to sleep. He sees my struggles and picks me up.

Life is about balance and making the choices to be happy. Was my dream to bring home my baby to an ugly townhouse where I couldn’t paint her nursery walls? Absolutely not. However, I realized that life is very fluid. We are all on a journey and I anticipate and enjoy every little piece along the way. Patience is key and choosing to be happy along the journey is all part of the process. I was so taken back that this woman could see how happy we are that it made my heart smile.

She then said, “Wow. Olivia has a gift of making people smile. She will do big things in this world and I hope she never loses her happiness.” I couldn’t agree more. Motherhood is life changing. It’s the biggest thing I have ever done and I constantly ask myself if I am doing the right thing. Hearing this woman’s compliment gave me the push I needed just as I start to begin to question whether or not I am a good mom.

As we move forward to Spring, I hope you all take this opportunity for a fresh start. A fresh start to choose happiness and patience when life is feeling stagnant and you haven’t quite gotten where you want to be. I challenge you to lift each other up and give compliments. You never know when it could make someone’s day.