Out of sight. In my heart

I hope I can put into words how I was feeling today!

This morning we stopped by the park. Two boys came over (around 8 and 6ish) and Kenzie started playing with them. They were all playing so well at the playground and eventually their games took them away from the playground and toward the walking trail behind it. Soon she was out of my sight. I could still hear them every once in a while. But I couldn't see her. I realized it was my first time ever that she was playing away from me and I couldn't see or hear her at all. Not only that, but she was even playing with complete stranger kids. This was a whole new experience for me. As I sat in the grass with Cooper my mind was racing. 

Should I go check on her? But it's good for her to feel safe and independent while she plays. I don't want her to see me and think she needs to be checked on as she plays. 

There's really nothing dangerous over there. But what if something happens- will I be able to hear it? What if she wanders off and gets lost? 

The boys are playing with her and being really attentive. But what if they get bored with her and run off? Or do something physical that she can't yet but wants to? (Climb walls, scale the hill, etc). 

On and on and on. 

I'm not a helicopter mother. I don't mind them (you do your thing mama) but that's not how I am. And sometimes I think free range parent's are seen as taking an easy route. Look at that mom sitting on the grass in the cool shade instead of going down the hill and following her daughter in the sun. 

But you know what? My heart and brain were ON FIRE as I was letting her be a kid. I was a hot mess inside while she was out of my view. But I believe it's important for kids to be able to play semi-unsupervised with other kids. Even at age 3. And because I believe that, I stayed on the grass with my baby. It wasn't easy. No parenting style is easy. And maybe there are moms out there that don't blink an eye when their kids aren't in their view. Maybe I was a hot mess because she's my first, and I can't believe she's old enough! Maybe it's my anxiety that gets triggered and I go to all those bad scenarios in my head. Maybe I'll send Cooper out the door without a second thought. Or maybe not. 

But either way, I was really happy when the games were over and we could go home. 


Hi Baby: Happy 3rd Birthday

Happy birthday my sweet baby girl.

 I know every mom says this on every birthday- but I can't believe you're already 3! Today after your nap you cuddled with me for a full 15 minutes. And while that might not seem that long to some, for you and your world with big, explosive feelings and energy- it felt like forever. And it was just what this mommy needed. Your sweet soft skin clutching onto that stupid old puppy and still fitting your head right where it needs to be. It was the best 15 minutes I've had this week. You can tell everyone your birthday is "August 5th!" and when asked what you want for your birthday you immediately yell "CAKE!" and then a notch quieter yell "AND POPPY AND NANA AND JAKE". You're an easy girl to please.

I remember August 5th 2014 and being told you were coming TONIGHT, not in 3 days like we thought. I was in labor but your stubborn body was breach which meant we had to do things a little differently. But you came out perfect at 6PM and I've been enamored by you ever since. You have made me a better person. You have shown me my purpose here on Earth. Being your mom is the most satisfying and fulfilling thing I have ever done. Not a day goes by that I don't thank my Heavenly Father for trusting me to be your mom. I pray that I can raise you and love you and mother you in the ways that will help you grow and succeed and flourish. I never want to be the person that dulls your sparkle or rains on your crazy little person parade.

 I've learned to give you space and independence and you're thriving. You have such amazing control over your body and strength. You're such a physical person and I love watching you experiment and test your body's limits. You're starting to draw and I'm pretty impressed by you. You can draw circles and faces and lines that are "mom and daddy and Booger and Kenzie!" You love to use your scissors and still aren't super into toys. You still yell "I'LL HELP YOU!" and proceed to drag a kitchen chair over to the counter to help me cook. You get frustrated, but can be talked down pretty quickly. You throw tantrums, but only when you're tired. You love to watch movies/TV and we usually watch a show in the evening to help you calm down a little bit. You're starting to become sweeter and nicer to Cooper and you two actually played together for 20 MINUTES and I thought I died and went to Heaven.

You're smart, sassy, funny and quick. You ask questions when you don't understand something. You repeat until you totally comprehend what I'm saying. You love making new friends and can play for hours with others. You also sometimes like to act like a "little baby" and need to be held and I don't mind it one bit. You're starting to test bedtime and try to pull the "I need a drink. I'm hungry. I want dad to sing me a song" but I'm still winning that game...for now.

I don't know how to express my love for you. And this last year has been so much FUN. I've loved being able to talk and communicate. I love your funny sayings and demeanor. You make me smile and laugh every day, and I try to make you laugh every day too. You're my best girl. I say a silent prayer every day that we can always be best friends. I hope as I write you something on your 13th birthday I can say that same thing. But for now, I will soak up every sweet moment with my little 3 year old. I love you Kenzie girl.



A little life update

I thought it might be time for a little Bowen family update. Mostly because I'm sitting at the computer and finally have some time and motivation to write something- but a particular topic doesn't come to mind.

We're all settled into our apartment in Herriman and it's totally great for us. A little more space, but all on one level and it's starting to feel like a new home. I feel like we're pretty adaptable and since nothing else in our lives changed, the move actually didn't end up feeling like that big of one. I miss my friends and neighbors, but I know I will make new friends and have new neighbors. We've already met a few and I look forward to getting to know more people as time goes on.

Football season has officially begun and Bart is pouring his heart and soul into the Cottonwood HS team. It's overwhelming and exhausting but also exciting and it's going to be a good year. Kenzie already walks around the school and field like she owns the place, so I don't see us having any problems adjusting.

Cooper seems to be crying more than smiling these days, but I remember reading that same sentiment about Kenzie around the same time frame so I just have to remind myself it's a stage! And his big smile still comes out on a regular basis, so he knows how to melt my mama heart. He's pulling himself up and even starting to stand on his own for a second or two at a time...we'll see how long it takes him to figure out that walking is an option. He's a fun loving little boy and I'm still his favorite. But Kenzie and Bart can get him pretty happy and excited too, so it might be a tie for second place favorites.

Kenzie never ceases to amaze me and I love just being around her (most of the time). She's so dang smart and the stuff that comes out of her mouth makes me laugh. Today she started saying "what the heck are you doing mom". I don't think "what the heck" is a catch phrase of mine...but I'm sure she heard it somewhere. She did start saying "that happens" after an accident (spilled drink, broken something, etc) and I know she got THAT from me. That one made me laugh pretty hard hearing it for the first time.

In general I've really loved having two kids. They both just add something totally unique to the family dynamic and it's a perfect fit.

That's all I have for now- but like I said, football season has started so this single mother and lonely lady will have plenty of time at night to write away all her feelings while her husband abandons her for a group of teenage boys. Don't worry- I'm making him take me on a vacation at the end to make up for it!


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