“Why are you fat, Mommy?”

I have said this before and I will say it again, my son is honest, candid, and doesn’t intentionally mean to be hurtful.  Keeping this in mind, it is still extremely hard when he asks such personal questions.

Two years ago, after my husband lost 50 pounds on his mail route, my son started asking me, “Why are you fat and the rest of us are thin?”  I would look at my small plate, with the smallest portions in the family, and say, “I don’t know.”

Last year, when I found two exercise classes that I loved, and committed to, he asked, “If you exercise, and eat healthy, then why are you still fat?”

Once again, my response would be, “I don’t know.”

“Why should I exercise if I can still be fat?”  He inquired.

“Because even if I don’t look the way I want, I want my body to be healthy.  When I get tests done at the doctor, my blood says that I live a healthy lifestyle.  I don’t know why I still look like this.” I said on my lips, but inside I cried.

Anyway, through my weight loss journey, my kids have watched me.  They have seen me come home from the gym sweaty.  They see what I eat, and they notice that they eat more than me.  They noticed right away when I quit eating gluten (wheat products), and they ask lots of questions along the way.  We are glad they ask questions, because we share genetics.  Who is to say they won’t have their own fitness journey someday.

This week, I learned the importance of working out in front of my kids.  I love my spinning and Body Pump classes, but I needed more exercises in my week that worked with my new work schedule.  Scott and I bought Insanity, so we could get toned together.  We have completed one month of this program, sweating, crying (at times), and getting through each intense workout.

The other morning, Scott wasn’t feeling well, and 5 minutes into one of the most intensive workouts I have ever done, he left me to do the hour-long workout ALONE.  I was sad and frustrated.  I tried to make my body do things that it has never done.

About 55 minutes into the workout, I was spent.  Done. Tired.  READY to be done.  It was too much.  Sweat was pouring off of my forehead.  I ran out of water ages ago.  Every single muscle in my body ached.

My over critical son, who is famous for pointing out the obvious walked into the room to watch me complete my workout.  I kept waiting for him to say something like, “You don’t do it as good as they do.”

INSTEAD he yelled, “YOU CAN DO IT, MOMMY!”

That’s all it took.  My muscles started working again, and I completed the last exercise before the cool down.  I finished the tape and have completed two more videos since that morning (with Scott).

My body might not be perfect.  I have MANY workouts before I am the size or the shape I want to be, but at least my kids KNOW how hard I am trying.  That is the lifelong lesson I want them to remember.

Shame on you!

So, only days and days after the really funny moms started a mom shaming campaign, I finally was inspired to join. (Click here for the other shaming posters). Basically, a bunch of blogging moms from our atomic reach tribe, Blogging While Mom, are admitting our sins and shaming ourselves for the whole world to see.  I am sure it was inspired by this dad’s story and the public out cry because of it.  I see it as funny, and I understand that others don’t, but whatever.

Anyway, this week, after thinking really hard, I started feeling like, “Whoa, my mom sins aren’t that bad.”  Or “I don’t lie to my kids, yay me!”  I was just about to give myself a nonexistent You are an Awesome Mom award when this happened:

After school, I emptied the kids’ backpacks full of worksheets and projects from school this week. After oo-ing and ah-ing over each little star, (they were watching a movie, but I am sure they could feel my pride in them,) I did what I always do with their school papers: Buried them deep into the recycling bin.  I continued on with my day.

Later, Ana, seeing that her backpack was opened, said, “Mom, what did you do with all my papers from school.”

(Knowing that she wanted to keep each one, and they would then end up all over her room, creating another fire hazard, until they were ripped to shreds, and then I would have to ask her a million times to pick up her room, where she would cry and whine about hard it is, until all fun activities were threatened, and her room would finally get somewhat clean, and those precious papers of today would end up in the recycling bin in a few short days…) I said, “Hmmmmm, I laid them somewhere.  Where have you looked?”  We then looked around for a total of 2 minutes when something shiny caught her eye and said papers were forgotten.

See, I don’t lie to my kids, but that doesn’t mean I am completely honest either!

What are your sins as a mom?  Come on share them, we ALL have MANY!

Check out these funny moms on Facebook.  Click “Like” (on Facebook) if you like to laugh! You can also “Pin” the Top 35 Most Pinteresting Moms too! (And the shame continues…)

Freedom of Spe- Hate?

Hate.  It is in our world and it’s not going away.  As a person who loves yellow, the sun, smiley faces, love, hugs, kisses, and other “Life is Good” ideas, the hate is getting to me, I mean, REALLY getting to me.

I made a mistake, a big one.  I opened up Facebook while we were on our road trip.  I wanted to check messages, check in with loved ones, and I don’t know, take advantage of 3G data, which we don’t have in our small town.  When I opened it up, I was greeted with messages of HATE all over MY news feed.  People HATING gays, Chick-Fil-A, Romney, and Obama.  I literally threw my phone down and started crying.

“Are you Ok, Babes?” Scott asked, as he was driving through Indiana.

“Why is Mommy crying?’ asked our son.

“I can’t take it any more!  I can’t do this!  Hate is EVERYWHERE and now it’s ALL over my Facebook feed.  There isn’t one status, one announcement of JOY, no one is spouting off God’s LOVE.  Freedom of speech has turned into FREEDOM TO HATE!  Is this what people learned in church this morning?  Using a book of worship to find WAYS to HATE and JUDGE?  What about Jesus?  What about LOVE?  What about God’s LOVE for US that He sent us JESUS.  What about we were created in His image?  What about leaving the JUDGING up to GOD?  Where is the LOVE?  Facebook was supposed to be about connecting with people, not a place to HATE.”  I was absolutely sobbing at this point,  I might have said more, it’s been a few weeks and I have been praying about this post since.  I did say these things, I do know that.

“Maybe it’s time to erase your Facebook account.  You keep talking about your frustration with it.”

“Maybe it is.”  Eventually we moved on because when it comes to faith, God, religion, and other things, Scott and I agree with each other.  We believe in Jesus’ love.  We believe in the 10 Commandments and we believe in the works of Jesus Christ.  (I am not saying this to get YOU to believe what WE believe, or to debate differing opinions.  I am just telling you OUR understanding of Christianity.)

I have been thinking about this idea for weeks, getting rid of Facebook, and all sorts of social media.  I have revamped my news feed and now I see less hate, but it’s still there.  I have come to this conclusion, hate is everywhere.  I can’t avoid it.  I am sticking with it, I can’t run away.  My kids are growing up in a world connected to the Internet. Someday, social media will be a part of their world and I HAVE to learn how to handle it so I can HELP them handle it.

I am not saying I want everyone in my world to agree with me.  I am not saying that I hide people who have different ideas and view points than me.  I mean, people I love very much disagree with me about a lot of things and I don’t hide them.  Conflict or differing opinions are different from HATE messages that are appearing on Facebook day after day.  The ones that aren’t funny or adding to the good of society.  Honestly, it’s NOT just on Facebook, but anywhere where the online person is allowed to openly say anything.  I see it everywhere.  Comments on blogs and articles are the best examples.  When reading a well written article about a mother’s postpartum depression this morning, I accidentally scrolled down to the comments.  I tried not to read them, but I did.  Instead of saying, “Wow!  Thanks for helping me.”  So many online commenters called the writer entitled, spoiled, and went off on her.  Hello, the article was about DEPRESSION.  Is there any pause to think, “There might be a new mom out there feeling this same way, who might be getting ready to do something drastic, and MAYBE she read this and realized that she is not alone?”  No, it’s so much easier to get on our soap boxes and judge and HATE, because hating is easy. (I did by the way, TRY to write a message of support and I will keep trying until the online service lets me do it.)

Since our road trip, I still see the hate.  Yes, I still cry, SOMETIMES.  When I see the hate, I pause. I think, and if it keeps bothering me, I pray.  I pray about the cause of the hate, the message that is being sent, and I pray for the correct reaction.  Most of all, I pray for the power to live a Christian life.  What would Jesus do?  What does my cross around my neck mean?  I can tell you, it’s not a symbol, but a reminder that God created me for a mission and it is my job to live it.  Does MY online and offline presence match the mission of Jesus?  I can’t control the world, heck, I can’t control my kids, but I can control my behavior.  I can do my best to lead by example and I can pray.