How do I even start a story that is so personal and vulnerable? How can I possibly put into words the feelings that have led me here, to this moment, when I get to become a part of your life and your story? It’ll be hard, but I’ll do my best…
In my early years, life was rough. My dad was a narcissistic alcoholic and my mom just did her best to keep the peace. They split with I was three. I won’t go into all the details of my childhood here, but you can read all the nitty gritty ups and downs when you’re ready.
Needless to say, there were a lot of things going on in my childhood that didn’t do me any good. Aside from the alcohol abuse, my dad was also physically and emotionally abusive. He never hit us kids, but we saw him hit Mom.
Now don’t get me wrong. I truly do love my dad. Honestly, I never got a chance to hate him because he passed away just before I was old enough to start realizing all the bad things that were happening. When he was alive, it never dawned on me that my family wasn’t normal.
After Dad died, we moved in with my mom and step dad and things were just fine. We didn’t have a lot of money or anything, but our lives were pretty normal and pretty healthy.
I didn’t know, though, that everything that happened in my childhood had created these deep wounds that would surface again as I got older.
I’d say it all started coming out, slowly but surely, when I started dating. I mean, I had never really known what a good relationship should look like.
In my dating relationships I became controlling and demanding which pushed away the people I cared the most about – and hurt me even further because I couldn’t understand why no one could love me.
It wasn’t until well into my marriage that I finally decided to start seeking help to overcome my struggles. And it wasn’t until we became parents that I was able to admit there was likely more to my struggles and decided to get medicated.
So what’s all of that got to do with my blog? Everything!
The Beginning Of A Dream
Let me back up a little bit and explain…
In 2008 I was preparing for my second international mission trip. It was during this prep that I felt God telling me he had a plan for me.
For basically my whole life, I had always had this sense that there was something more for me, something bigger than just getting by and living a mediocre life.
When God spoke to me, I thought He was calling me to serve as an international missionary. It sounded exciting and fun and I was ready to go all in!
I started searching for the next step which led me to Lincoln Christian University studying Intercultural Studies. It was there that I met my husband and plenty of good people who poured into my life and helped me grow in a lot of different ways.
During my time there I learned a lot about the mission field and different ways to “do” missions. When I graduated in 2013, I knew I couldn’t join the mission field right away because I had student debt, my husband was in the military, and it just didn’t seem to be the right path for us at that point in time.
So I put my missionary dreams on the back burner as we worked to build a life for ourselves. I believed that God would lead me back to missions at the right time and place and circumstance, and I was content with where we were.
In 2015, after bonding over our difficulties in life, one of my best friends and I decided to attend Celebrate Recovery. I had struggled with anger and depression for years, though they were undiagnosed.
But my anger was more than just getting mad sometimes. I would rage to a point that I was out of control. My whole body would feel like it was on fire and I couldn’t control my actions or my words. It all would just come spilling out in the most vile ways.
The things I said and did were hurtful and cruel, but I couldn’t stop myself. And once the rage subsided, I would sink into a depression, sometimes for days, because I would feel so horrible about how I had acted.
Celebrate Recovery helped me name and find closure for all the things in my life that had contributed to these struggles. But I still couldn’t stop the rage and depression. I knew there had to be more to it, and so, it was after my first son was born that I was diagnosed with major depressive disorder and intermittent explosive disorder which allowed me to get the medication I so desperately needed.
So back to my dream of being a missionary…
The Beginning Of My Blogging Journey
When my second son was born I decided I wanted to find a way to work from home. I had given up my full time job to be a stay at home mom, and we were totally fine with that. But I wanted more than just being a mom. I wanted something that was just for me, something I could put my passion into. Plus, it would be nice to have some extra income, not gonna lie.
Like I said before, I had always felt like I was meant for something more. I never really felt satisfied with working for other people and doing whatever I was told to do. I had this creativity and passion and desire to lead hidden down deep inside and it was itching to get out.
So in the summer of 2018, when my youngest son was just five months old, I began researching and trying to find what it was that I was meant to do. I tried a little of this and a little of that, taking online courses and scouring the internet for anything that might help me find direction.
Then in November 2018 I launched my first blog, Everything Beautiful.
I had this idea in my head for a while that I had never shared with anyone. I wanted to build a place for moms and their children to come and create a better life for themselves. I envisioned providing them with a home and resources and education to help them escape from whatever life they were trying to leave behind.
I wanted to help them find work, get an education, provide for their children, and be the best parents they could be.
Mostly I just wanted to love on them and give them hope for the life they dreamed of.
And Everything Beautiful was my first step towards building that dream.
I began blogging about everything I knew anything about. I wrote about all things parenting and baby related – from carseats and baby registries to discipline and sleep schedules. I wrote about minimalism and organization and mental health. I wrote about death and addiction and abuse.
And when the opportunity came, I signed up for one of the most well-known online courses for bloggers there is and began learning everything I could about creating a successful business from a blog.
I still wanted to help women, but I just hadn’t quite figured out all the details. I was still trying a little bit of everything. Then after a year of frustration and feeling like I was getting nowhere, the time came for a change.
I realized that a lot of what I was writing about just wasn’t working. Some of it was stuff I’m very knowledgeable about, but it wasn’t really relevant for the people I was trying to reach. And some of the stuff, although very relevant and close to my heart, I just wasn’t educated enough to write about.
And so, I decided (with lots of prayer and guidance) to narrow down my focus and rebrand to the blog you know and love today, Mended Mom.
The Beginning Of The Rest Of Our Story
My mission now is to walk this path of parenting together with other moms who are seeking to break the legacy of dysfunction in their lives too. I want to build a community of like-minded moms as we support and encourage one another on this journey.
See, I’ve had a long and winding path to get to this point. And I’m sure God isn’t done with me yet. There will probably be lots more twists and turns ahead of me. But that’s ok, because I’m not taking this journey alone. I have you and many others walking with me. And together we can conquer any obstacle that stands in our path.
For now, my business is limited to the online world. Through my blog and the connections I make there, I hope to help moms begin to see a way out of their broken and dysfunctional lives.
As Mended Mom grows I’d love to add online courses and coaching services, too.
And maybe one day I’ll be able to take Mended Mom even further. Maybe God will give me the opportunity to build that place I dreamed about – the one where I get the privilege of seeing the transformation of moms’ lives as they break free from the chains of generational dysfunction. And that would be amazing.
But for now, I’m just taking it one day at a time. I’m still learning and growing and figuring out all the details of this calling of mine. And I’m beyond excited that you’ve decided to join me on this journey!
Together we’re going to change the world, friend. You just wait and see.
Welcome to the club, momma!