Where Have You Been? {when life kicks you in the shins…}

A dear friend reached out to me last week and asked, “I haven’t seen you blogging lately. Is everything okay?”

No, everything has not been okay.

It’s hard to admit that, especially in such a public forum. But sometimes we go through seasons of life when we feel like we are drowning, barely keeping our heads above water.

Life ebbs and flows. It’s a neverending timeline of people coming and going, children growing and changing, seasons of fulfillment and emptiness. It’s hard sometimes to reconcile the part of me who is so upbeat and happy with the part who feels so lonely and sad. I feel like I am such a happy and positive person, being chased by shadows I want to escape. Those shadows aren’t me. I don’t like them, and I don’t want them to be a part of me. The person I am is the one who is smiling, excited, optimistic, exuberant, and hopeful for the future.

So here’s a little bit about what I’ve been up to. 

1. I started a homeschool co-op. It was both a brilliant success and an epic disaster. The people who came were wonderful, kind, fun, and committed. Unfortunately we lost half of the families who signed up, leaving me to scramble last minute to cover down on the teachers who quit, rearrange children, etc. It was extremely disappointing to see so many people go back on their word.

2. We got sick. My whole family caught everything under the sun. Stomach bug (more than once), colds, pink eye… you name it. We cycled through this madness from early January all the way through mid-April. It was exhausting.

3. My main struggle the past few months has been my PCOS. Before even being diagnosed, I have been battling the symptoms of this disease. When I first started searching for a solution to my problems, it was because I had put on 70 pounds in 18 months, even with eating (relatively) healthy and exercising regularly. After being diagnosed, I was put on a strict low-carb/no-sugar diet, and I lost a lot of weight in the beginning (about 40 pounds). But then I plateaued. And then I started to gain again. Now, I’m at my highest non-pregnant weight, even with eating under 75-100g of carbs a day, no sugar or artificial sweeteners, and exercising regularly. It’s frustrating, to say the least. On top of the weight gain, PCOS is hormonal, so it causes other problems too: headaches, nausea, fatigue, hot flashes. Some days I feel too sick to get out of bed. I feel like I’m fighting a losing battle — no matter what I do, my weight keeps increasing, and I keep feeling worse and worse. My declining health is causing other areas of my life to suffer as well: homeschooling, blogging (obviously), friendships, housework, etc.

4. I joined a Bible Study group. It’s small (4 ladies), but it gives me the spiritual nourishment and accountability I need, as well as developing some new friendships.

How I’m trying to move forward. 

I’ve been implementing little changes over the past month to make life easier.

-I was gifted a pressure cooker, which is making cooking and meal prep so much faster and simpler. The one I have is the Power Pressure Cooker XL — it’s very similar to the Instant Pot, but a little nicer & bigger.

Stay tuned for some pressure cooker recipes! 

-It finally got nice outside in dreary Ohio, so I’ve been making the most of the weather! Our family has been hiking, biking, running, walking, and being outside as much as we can! 

-I’m focusing more on school and less on extra-curricular activities.

-I’m reading more and watching Netflix less.

{These are the books on my night stand right now!}

-I’m being more intentional about my diet, and monitoring my carb intake more carefully.

-I finally gave up diet soda once and for all. (I mean it this time! I’m done!) Soda has been a lifelong struggle for me. When I was a kid I literally never drank water. My parents had a “beer & pop fridge”, fully stocked at all times. I drank 4-5 sodas a day as a child, and it got worse as I got older. {momming takes caffeine, amiright?} I switched to tea (I hate coffee).

-I’m trying to let go of the jealousy I feel toward others — many of whom actually suffer from PCOS as well — but who do not seem to have half the struggle I do. I am trying to recognize that God put me in this place because this is my journey and it is not anyone’s to walk but my own.

My apologies. 

So all this is to say, I’m sorry for ditching you for the past 6 weeks. I’m working on blogging more regularly. It probably won’t be 5 times a week like I was doing before, but if I can manage it, I’ll write 1-2 posts a week. I do still have lots of printables & freebies in store! And my list of ‘blog posts to write’ is over 100 posts long, so I’m certainly not going to run out of ideas any time soon! I have lots more to share!

And I wanted to give a sincere thank you to the amazing friends who have been so supportive to me through this journey. Your love & prayers mean so much!



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