As I sit here this morning sipping my coffee I think to myself, what in the world am I supposed to write about? And then I hear a chuckle from Kendall as she joyfully watches Baby Einstein on TV. Oh yeah, I forgot I gave birth almost 7 months ago. This is just an example of how my brain has been functioning for the last 7 months. Taking care of a baby is hard work, people. Everyone should be required to have children because it teaches you so much. Okay, maybe not everyone. That would not be good. Anyways, let me tell you about my new little bundle of joy because that’s obviously what everyone wants to hear about. Kendall Grace Burns was born on February 2nd, 2015 at 12:16 a.m. She weighed 7 pounds, 14 ounces and measured 21 inches long. Labor and delivery went smoothly. There wasn’t any crazy drama that I could use to scare other expecting mothers (darn). When I saw Kendall for the first time I was flooded with a mix of emotions. All of the anticipation, stress, and excitement was over; she was finally here. And so beautiful! Let’s be honest, newborns aren’t the cutest looking creatures but mine definitely was (I’m not biased at all). The first couple of months of motherhood were pretty rough. The hardest part was/has been the lack of sleep. Interrupted sleep every night really took a toll on my body physically and mentally. Honestly, the first few months are a bit of a blur because I was in zombie mode half the time. Luckily over time my body adjusted and could function on less sleep (with the help of coffee too). Being a single mom has also had challenges in itself. When I’m at the end of my rope, I can’t just hand her over to the other parent. I’ve had to do everything on my own. I have been truly blessed by the help that my family and friends have provided but it’s not the same. I have had to fully depend on the Lord for strength to just keep on going.
Despite the lack of sleep, lack of freedom, lack of sanity, etc., I have experienced the most joy from being Kendall’s mom. I never knew I could love a little human so much. Words can’t describe the feelings I have when she looks into my eyes and smiles. It’s been fun to watch her grow, reach new milestones, and see her little personality bloom. And let me just say, she is a firecracker. I never thought I would have a child that is this crazy and energetic. She never sits still and is always looking for things she can get into. She is going to give me a run for my money when she can walk because she won’t be walking – she’ll be running! She is a handful but so entertaining. At almost 7 months now, she is 18 pounds and 29 inches long. She is in the 99th percentile for both her height and weight. She is one big baby! So I guess I can’t really refer to her as my “little” human.
As I’ve been praying for a certain message to portray in this blog post, I’m reminded of things that the Lord has done in my life over the past few months and they are messages in and of themselves. My heart is overwhelmed by His grace and provision of mine and Kendall’s lives. Prior to the Mother’s Day service at church, I was asked if our pastor could share my story to the congregation. Holy cow! Of course I e-mailed my story to them, excited at the big door that the Lord had opened. So on Sunday the pastor read my story and while Kendall and I stood on stage the whole congregation prayed for us. My heart was already overflowing at that point and then on top of that, the church showered us with generous gifts. I was overwhelmed at the generosity of my church but I was also overwhelmed at God’s grace and how He has provided us with such a loving church family and an amazing support system. I was on cloud nine on Mother’s Day, dwelling on the greatness of my God. I started to descend from my cloud after a few days until I received a phone call from my former college basketball coach. As I hung up the phone I began to cry. He offered me a spot on the basketball team, saying that the Lord put me on his heart as he was deciding who would fill the last spot on the team. When I chose life for Kendall, I hung up my basketball shoes. I had dreams about playing again and the thought was sort of a fantasy for me. At first I was apprehensive about it because playing basketball and going to school on top of being a mom seems very challenging. I decided to accept the offer because I knew that if it was God’s plan, it would all work out. So this whole summer I have been going to physical therapy for my knee because I couldn’t fully rehabilitate it while pregnant (yeah, everyone forgot that I had knee surgery before everything happened). I’ve been so excited to return to the school that I love and to be in such a Christ-centered environment again. A couple of weeks ago I had a meeting with some of the administration from the college and my coach. I thought we were just going to go over some of the details of my return, however, they proposed an incredible offer. They said that the college wanted to show their full support for my return by paying for the rest of my education. Basically, they don’t want me to feel obligated to play basketball in order to finish school. They want me to be able to focus on being a mom and not have to worry about the financial responsibility of tuition. I was in shock as I sat in this meeting, trying to comprehend what was happening. I knew that it was the Lord providing for Kendall and I. Again, I was just so overwhelmed by God’s grace and His provision for my life. This offer is incredible. I think most people would automatically choose it, however, I was torn. I ended up choosing to play basketball because the game is something that I am passionate about and I love being a part of a team that shares my same passion for the game and for Christ. Although I chose to play, it is such a relief to know that I don’t have to play if it becomes too much of a burden on my other responsibilities. I am truly thankful for the community at the college; they have been the perfect example to me of what it looks like to extend God’s grace to others. As I’ve been trying to find a place to live close to campus, I’ve become very frustrated. I was working so hard, trying to do everything on my own and nothing seemed to be working out. Finally, I just stopped trying and thought, Okay God, you’ve brought me this far so I’m sure you’ll show me where you want us to live. After a few days of not trying at all, God provided us a place to live with a great family. When I have surrendered everything to the Lord, He has always followed through. ALWAYS!
Through these past few months I have been amazed at how God works everything out. I may not always understand God’s ways but He knows what is best for my life and for your life! I encourage you to stop trying to do everything yourself and just surrender everything to the Lord and ask Him to guide you. He will ALWAYS follow through! I hope and pray that my life can be an encouragement to others. If my life can touch just one person, then I will be satisfied. Thanks for reading!
Here are some pictures of my perfect angel. Enjoy!