Saturday, May 9, 2015

I Am A Special Needs Mother

Mother's Day is very hard for me but last Mother's Day I found a way to look at it differently. I love all of these post I have been reading that recognizes all of the beautiful mothers but they left out one kind of mother. When I became a mother 8 years ago I was introduced to a world of special needs. From the first hour, I found out that my precious baby looked different, she had an extra finger and toe on each of her hands and feet. At 3 days, she was rushed to primary children's hospital by ambulance for an emergency surgery, after that we were sat down and we were told she had a very rare genetic syndrome.  3 and a half years later, we had our sweet boy. He also had complications and the same syndrome. Bardet-biedl syndrome.

I am a special needs mother.

I have felt many emotions as I'm sure every other special needs mother feels. I have felt lonely, guilt, terrified, grief, inadequate, a failure, helpless, sad, pain, & hopeless. But Being a special needs mother is also so joyful, and humbling. In this journey, I have meet some of the most wonderful and selfless mothers of special needs children. I have so much admiration for them.  There is something so special about these children that brings out the best in us and gives us compassion, patience, and endless love. We all give each other hope.

So this Mother's Day I give you and myself permission to be proud of all we are.
Say no. feel,laugh, & cry. You don't have to hold it all together for anyone and put on that mask of a smile. Wear your superhero cape for a day and be proud that you got up and got yourself out of bed and faced another day! Hug your children and know how much they love you!
I give us permission to stop feeling guilty that we haven't done enough, because we have done more than we can imagine in the life's of these special children.

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Savannah's Baptism

Savannah was just glowing on her baptism day! She was so excited, and so happy! I can't believe how grown up she looks!
We let her pick who gave the talks and what songs we sang and everything. It took a while to try to get her to understand and give us answers and we went through just about every page in the children's song book. :) She wanted the First Article of Faith,  the rainbow song(when i am baptized), & A Child's Prayer which her girl cousins did a beautiful job singing. I looked over at Savannah and she was singing it along with them! It was so cute!

You could feel the spirit so strongly in that room, I know it was the right thing and done at the right time.

We had lots of family and friends who came. We are so grateful to everyone who came to support Savannah on her decision to be baptized. It was so much fun to see everyone that we hadn't seen in a while! I meant to get pictures with everyone outside the church, but with everything I forgot of course. :(

We usually can't get Xander to hold still for pictures so we told him to hug his sister so this is what we got!  :)

Sorry I have these pictures all out of order but these are ones of me getting Savannah ready before the baptism!If you ever wonder how I get Savannah to let me do her hair, I give her the I pad. It works!

Last minute, the day before I decided I wanted to have her baptism pictures out so I threw together this! When Savannah got home from school and saw it she was so excited! She loves the pictures of her and Addison!

Savannah and grandma Jensen! Grandma and papa jensen came out from Missouri for Savannah's baptism and Addison's blessing.

I am so proud of my beautiful Savannah. I know that she is a child of God and I also know that she knows it too!

Pondering Savannah's Baptism

Savannah was super excited to help put invitations is envelopes!
 A few weeks before Savannah's baptism we got the okay! We were so excited for her and you could just see how excited Savannah was whenever we talked to her about it! We had been talking things through to her about it for weeks now, and we were hoping she was understanding a little bit more.
 We were a bit nervous when after one family home evening, when we were talking about Christ being baptized she said, "not my eyes!" she was so worried that her eyes would go under the water when she got baptized. She and Xander had done swimming lessons with some really awesome youth in our ward the last summer and they had gotten really used to the water where they weren't scared, but now she was. Court and I tried to calm her down and talk her through why every part of the person needs to go under water, and we just had our figures crossed that when the time came she would be okay with it.
 We have pondered, Is Savannah really ready? Does she really understand it? Does she even know what covenants she will be making?

The answer to all of those is probably/ most likely not but we don't know to all that she understands. Hopefully one day we will know more.

In our church, when you are eight you are old enough to make your own decision to be baptized. When you are eight you are accountable and know right and wrong and have a good concept of who God is.

I want my children to have their own testimonies/ to have faith and to know what they believe in. I want them to know what promises they are making to Heavenly Father when they are being baptized and why we take the sacrament and renew our convents each week and what it all means.

 Ever since she saw her last couple cousins being baptized a year ago she has wanted to be baptized too. She just couldn't wait to be eight so she could be baptized. She just had such a desire and in all that I read I just felt in my heart that it couldn't hurt her and even though she doesn't understand it, Jesus was baptized and he was perfect. We prayed and pondered and it just felt so right.

This is when us girls went and picked out Savannah's Baptism dress! She was so happy!!

This was one of our family home evenings we did from the friend that we did. Most of the time Court and I feel like we are just talking to ourselves when we are doing family home evenings because Savannah doesn't answer, Xander is off playing with something or already onto trying to plan how he's going to sneak those chocolate chips he knows are somewhere in the house, but we try to keep them interactive or go do things as a family as much as possible too. Ill write a post about our FHE sometime!

I just know that my sweet little girl who in her world everything everything is beautiful, bright,  & hearts and flowers has been entrusted to our family to teach us. She has taught me to treasure the small moments and tender mercies. She is the reason why Courtney and I turned Heavenly Father and were sealed in the temple as a family with her for time and all eternity. She and her brother have helped our testimonies grow and we have become a stronger family.  She teaches me every day and she is my light at the end of the tunnel. She has such a sweet beautiful spirit. I am so grateful that she is my daughter!

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Family Pictures, January 2015

These are just some of the extra Camera Shy pictures we had taken in January. Addison was just 3 months! Time has gone by so fast!! Her big brother and sister just adore her!!

I LOVE these pictures of Xander!! This is his handsome smile!!! I love my little boy!

Addison's Blessing

In the LDS church, babies are not baptized. It is our belief that individuals can be baptized starting at age eight, because that is when they know right from wrong. When a baby is born into an LDS family, rather than being baptized the baby is given a blessing. In this blessing, the baby is officially given their name as well as a blessing unique to the individual. It is a very special blessing.

These are some pictures of Addison in her blessing dress! She wasn't in the best of moods but I just love them! I know it's not the norm but Addison is wearing the same dress that Savannah was blessed in.

Getting ready!

Addison was blessed on the same day as Savannah was baptized. It such a beautiful day and we were so lucky to have most of our family and close friends there with us on our girls special days! We love our Addison Claire Love.