The Tribe

Colleen

I hope you all are enjoying this series and also getting to know who I am better as well. I surround myself with uplifting, faith driven, positive women that make me want to be the best mom I can be. I didn’t say perfect Mom and that is what I love about my tribe. I loved digging further into who Colleen is a person and mother when reading about her. Her story on infertility, the fact that her gorgeous daughter was born premature and the way she helps me see the balance in motherhood is so empowering. Can I also add look at her infectious smile!

What is your favorite part of being a Mom?

I am so tempted to say “NAP TIME” but I will refrain. My favorite part of being a mother is watching all of the little things that my daughter does. I love to watch her take on new challenges and conquer them. I love to watch her excitement when she finds something new that interests her; a new book, dress, or toy. She reminds me to find joy in the little things.

Did you have any difficult challenges you faced on your pregnancy journey?

It took my husband and I 5 years to get pregnant. We weren’t able to conceive on our own and when we sought help from fertility specialists we were told that we may not ever be able to have children. When we did eventually conceive, my entire pregnancy was difficult, from morning sickness in the 1st trimester and migraines in the 2nd, to having my daughter 2 months early.

If so, do you have any words of encouragement for mothers facing what you did?

For those woman who face difficulties conceiving I would advise them to take their cares to the Lord. He knows the desires of your heart. We must also remember that God’s will is not always our will and His timing is not always our timing. Trust him and let him lead, guide, and direct your journey. Keep an open mind and heart. Do not stress, God is in control and in His time He will reveal His will to you, whether it be to have your own child or to adopt, allow Him to guide your steps. For those who face difficult pregnancies, childbirth and/or post-partum events, my advice would be to remember that this is a season in your life. Nothing lasts forever. The morning sickness will end, the migraines will subside, and that 4th degree tear that you got during childbirth will heal lol! Lastly, If your child is born premature and you are faced with that challenge, remember again that God is in control and He has your son/daughter in His hands. Also, learn to lean on your partner, you’ll need them more than ever.

How did you feel when you first found out you were pregnant?

I was excited and shocked. We conceived on our first round of Intrauterine Insemination (IUI). There is only a 25% chance of conception with each round of IUI, so I was shocked when I urinated on that stick and 2 minutes later a little blue line appeared in the “pregnant” window LOL! The first try was successful! We found out on Good Friday… it certainly was a good Friday lol!

What is the best piece of advice you have for a new Mom about to give birth to their first child?

Be patient with yourself. Embrace the journey! The best way to be disappointed is to set your expectations too high. Be reasonable and realistic. Take it one moment at a time. ALWAYS be generous with positive self-affirmation, you deserve it and you are doing the best you know how to do! Your best is always good enough. One other thing: NEVER EVER judge another parent. Encourage them! Parenting is difficult. Children don’t come with a manual, and even if they did, every child is different! Let them know that you see them trying and applaud their efforts!

What is the biggest surprise about motherhood in your eye?

I did not expect motherhood to be so demanding/exhausting, honestly LOL! It takes every ounce of energy I have, after a long day of work, to come home and cook, clean, give a bath, make sure clothes are clean for the next day, etc. I’m absolutely exhausted. I didn’t expect to be this drained all the time lol!

How do you handle discipline in your house?

My husband and I are fairly strict when it comes to discipline. We feel that our child needs to understand that there are consequences to every action, and that SHE is in control of her choices and the consequences of those choices. There are pleasant consequences to good choices and unpleasant consequences to poor choices. I love the book Parenting With Love And Logic. If you love to read parenting books like I do, it is an excellent read and, in my opinion, the strategies used help parents raise self-confident and responsible children.

What do you think of screen time?

THERE IS A BALANCE! Here’s what I mean: To be honest, my child probably gets far too much “screen time”, however, I do not see negative consequences to the amount of screen time she is given. In my opinion, and in the opinion of a child psychologist who evaluated her, my child shows appropriate emotional and social development. Therefore, I am not worried about the amount of screen time my daughter is getting. My daughter also goes to preschool and attends a child development center 3-5 days/week. This allows her to interact with peers which helps to increase her emotional IQ and learn social skills apart from her tablet. What I am trying to say is that allowing your child to have more than 2 hours of screen time a day is not going to create a poorly adjusted adult with antisocial personality disorder, and stressing about taking your child’s tablet away after exactly an hour of use is only going to drive you to drink lol! I believe it’s all about finding a BALANCE.

Who is a Mom you most admire?

I admire all mothers because being a mother is a difficult job! However, if I had to choose a mother that I admire most, it would be MY mother. She was always patient, loving and kind. She had a way of teaching her children difficult lessons through grace and love. 4 years ago, if anyone had asked me if I admired my mother, I would have replied yes, of course! But after having my own child, I appreciate my mom so much more; I have a whole new appreciation and respect for her now! I am thankful for all she did and still does.

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