Finding Ninee » Sharing our parenting and special needs stories with heart and humor.

Caillou’s whines bounced around the room’s lemony light the morning I tried to figure out whether my two-year-old was deaf. I muted the TV mid-sentence, and watched. Did he notice?   He was wearing my favorite outfit. Blue shorts and a white polo with rugby stripes along the chest. He wasn’t bald any longer like […]

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  • Emily - We went through this too — still do, because Big Dude doesn’t “fit” under a label. Speaking of labels, I’ve always had a hard time with them, because to me, they mean “stigma” even though they really don’t and shouldn’t. But, I also learned that if you want your child to receive certain services in school, then you need those labels, even though you dislike those labels and even though your child doesn’t really fit under any of those labels. We finally got to a point in Big dude’s schooling where he didn’t need any support and therefore he was “declassified.” So, what did I learn? Hold on to the labels until you don’t need them anymore. 🙂May 18, 2017 – 10:13 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I know what you mean about the stigma, Emily. I feel that way as well although it’d sometimes be easier to have a label to explain what’s going on. And yeah, the school thing gets more complicated. Tucker’s only seven and so far, so good with the general for services, but still. Thanks!May 19, 2017 – 10:02 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - Well done, my beautiful friend. Well done.
    You know, as far as we’ve come, I still wish I could keep my girl home with me all the time. Until I remember that it wouldn’t be good for either of us in the long run. And oh how I wish I could send a recording thing with her, just to know is she OK? Happy? Getting along with people or being bullied? Ugh.
    But gosh look how they’ve grown…and look how awesome they (and we) are. No matter what we do or don’t write about. xoMay 18, 2017 – 10:23 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thank you so so much!! I sometimes wish I could keep Tucker home with me too but honestly, that would be too much. For both of us, you know? I’d totally send a recording thing with him still if I didn’t know his backpack is in a cubby on the other side of the room. I never got great recordings anyway… And yeah, they are awesome. We are, too. xoMay 19, 2017 – 10:03 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - First, I love this look back at Tucker’s journey, and yours. I love knowing that I have known you since before kindergarten, and that through your eyes and words, I’ve had the privilege of watching Tucker grow and thrive.

    Second, I get the not wanting to write about stuff. But then it being the stuff that I do want to write about, but never will. Some people write for catharsis, and that’s great for them. Not for me.May 18, 2017 – 10:28 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I know what you mean, Dana, and feel the same way watching your kids grow and thrive and travel and now the first year of college! Wow. We’ve been doing this for a long time I suppose… I sometimes write for catharsis but there are MANY subjects that will never find their way on these here interwebs pages!May 19, 2017 – 10:06 pmReplyCancel

  • Linda Atwell - One of the questions I am asked most is what exactly is Lindsey’s disability? I still don’t have an easy, quick answer, like: autism, Down syndrome, Aspergers. I generally have to go into a long explanation, i.e. short in her neurological system caused from an unidentified syndrome plus essential tremors. Wow! A mouthful, huh?

    But what does that mean, exactly? people ask.

    Although she was diagnosed as the “R” word and we know that word would not be used today, Lindsey would be called intellectually disabled or developmentally delayed.

    Yeah, but what does that mean? they say.

    So I try again and again. I don’t really know. May never know.

    I know that many of my sisters/mothers living in the special needs world do not want labels. I believe I’ve talked about this before, but I so wanted a label. I wanted one more than anything because I believed, with a label, teachers might better be able to teach her. Yet a label, I mean an easy label, never came to fruition for me. I hope it does for you. It sure seems like what they are doing for Tucker is working and I’m so thrilled for you.

    And as far as feeling like writing about something. I totally get that! Hugs to you.May 19, 2017 – 1:57 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I thought of you Linda, as I know you’ve struggled with what Lindsey’s disability is. It’d be too easy to say that Lindsey is Lindsey, that Tucker is Tucker… because exactly – what does that mean? What do they struggle with? With Tucker, it’s funny… somebody asked me the other day if we still thought it was autism, and a mom who knows Tucker pretty well basically said he’s “all better” (she didn’t use those words but I forget what she said). Her snippets into his life – I can see why she thinks so… but she also doesn’t see his struggle to brush his teeth, to understand that when somebody says that another kid has a nice shirt/is good at something, that it’s not about HIM, and how he struggles with so much in so many ways. But, he’s also a seven-year-old boy, with seven-year-old boy desires and interests… Anyway. Thank you and hugs right back!May 19, 2017 – 10:35 pmReplyCancel

  • JT Walters - Okayed peed myself over the calliope video. I hated that little shit too! “R” it released a lot of repressed angry I had towards that cartoon character. Now if someone could make s son outting Sponge Bob for the pirnographic.cartoon. I might some day be whole again.

    Kristin and “R”. It is just Tucker. No labels except; beautiful. adore able, perfect and really thoughtful. That is how I see him and growing quickly.

    Late so if missing please forgive. Awesome Tuckrr is all I see!May 19, 2017 – 4:28 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - LOL to stupid Caillou!!! He is such a whiner! UGH I can’t stand him! No clue what you mean about outing Sponge Bob or some cartoon?? And I know. Tucker is just Tucker and so so awesome.May 19, 2017 – 10:40 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @TheGoldenSpoons - I feel like I have been watching Tucker grow up over these last few years of blogging and knowing you. I love stories about him and I kind of love that he was independent & confident enough to cut his hair (and that he wanted the man bun in the first place.). The older they get, the harder this blogging thing seems to be!May 19, 2017 – 8:07 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I feel the same about your daughters, Lisa! I kind of love he cut his hair too… but the rest is SO long and now it’s this little sprout right at his crown. We’ll see what happens… and yeah, the older they get, it’s not really fair any longer, right?May 19, 2017 – 10:53 pmReplyCancel

  • JT Walters - Makes me miss my son that much more!

    Sponge Bob is British humor and very pornographic!!! Watch and learn grasshopper who had to tell me what erotica was! LOL😭😂😂😂😂😂😂May 19, 2017 – 11:06 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Ok I’m obviously very naive because I’ve seen Sponge Bob and never got the pornographic part of it! Yikes! Also LOL.May 20, 2017 – 1:43 pmReplyCancel

  • Just J - While I think it’s definitely true that we all have places inside of us that we will never write about, even in journals hidden away for no one else to see, I am thankful that you have chosen to write about Tucker here and continue to share his story and yours with us, because not only do we learn from your experience, but we learn from the depth of your love what it means to be a mother, to encourage, to hope, and to believe. These are powerful lessons, and I admire your honesty so much!May 20, 2017 – 1:04 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thank you so much Just J! I really appreciate you saying that — one of these days, I should probably go through the archives though and see whether there’s anything that might embarrass him when he gets older. I like being part of the community, and sharing, and helping moms who are newer on the path than I am with figuring out developmental delays, etc. but I also don’t want anything I write about to be something that would hurt his feelings, if that makes sense…May 20, 2017 – 1:45 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie G smith - I know what you mean (or think I do😭) when you say you want to write about, but don’t want to. Sorry about the haircut (I would have loved to had seen him with a man bun). I remember cutting my bangs to, it was awful. And shaving my unibrow😱. Hang in there momma xoxo.May 22, 2017 – 2:07 pmReplyCancel

Being a mom feels like promise. Of do-overs for childhood slights and a chance to right the injustice of times you were misunderstood in your own youth. This tiny human holds your smile above all else. When you see him – really see him – you are sun on his face. And that’s when you’re […]

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  • Lisa @TheGoldenSpoons - Absolutely beautiful!!May 12, 2017 – 11:13 amReplyCancel

  • Debi - This: “It’s whispering ‘Good Night’ while feeling love so light and so heavy that you’re lifted up while falling through generations.”

    That’s exactly what it’s like. Thank you for this beautiful line!!! (and the whole post!)May 12, 2017 – 1:54 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thank you, Debi. It really is what it feels like. Happy Mother’s Day to you! I hope you have a great weekend!May 12, 2017 – 4:32 pmReplyCancel

  • Just J - You’ve got this mother thing nailed down so well, this is exactly what it is, all of this… and then one day they are grown up and you look at them in total awe, wondering how you created something so amazing, and how they grew up so fast when it seems like only yesterday they were so small.May 12, 2017 – 2:58 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks for the sweet comment. I look at Tucker in awe all the time, wondering how he’s possible. How he’s so amazing. Happy Mother’s Day!!May 12, 2017 – 4:35 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - I just loved this…so many great thoughts, but this one is sticking with me today, probably because I’m two weeks away from watching Big Dude graduate high school: “You turn, flip your pillow to the cool side, and he’s now five-years-old.” Except with me, I flipped my pillow and now he’s 19…Have a very happy mother’s day Kristi!!May 12, 2017 – 5:20 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thanks, Emily! I hope you have a really happy Mother’s Day too and again, huge congratulations to Big Dude and your whole family. It really does go by so quickly (except on the days when it really doesn’t) 😀May 12, 2017 – 7:22 pmReplyCancel

  • Kelly L McKenzie - And just when you’re feeling a little bit sad about the probability that they don’t need you anymore as they’re away at college and in 4th year or they’re teaching English in Spain and poof, you get a text from one asking for your cake recipe and a photo of a hand covered in hives from the other …

    The Happiest of Mother’s Days to you, Kristi!May 12, 2017 – 11:15 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw Kelly! I love the reminder that your kids are older than mine is and asking for your cake recipe, and what to do about hives. That’s really what it is, I guess, overall, right? And Happy Mother’s Day to you my friend!!!May 12, 2017 – 11:38 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - And Happy Mother’s Day to your mom! I hope she wears her purple pants!!!May 12, 2017 – 11:39 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - I knew this would be beautiful and I was right. I love how you can always put into words exactly what I don’t quite know I think or feel until I see it and then I think, “yesssss! exactly!” You are an awesome mom and an awesome person and I’m so glad to know you! xo Happy Mother’s Day!May 13, 2017 – 9:20 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - You’re too kind, Lisa and thank you so much for your sweet words. I think YOU are an awesome mom and an awesome person and am so glad we’re friends. Thank you for the prompt this week – it didn’t occur to me to write about moms until you said that in our FB group! DOH!!! I’d had another prompt planned but was so glad about this one and love what you wrote and Happy Mother’s Day!!!May 13, 2017 – 11:32 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerry - I love everything this post covers Kristi. The pillow turning over thing was an unexpectedly perfect way to explain what it’s like.

    I am glad I could come up with something for the prompt this week in particular. It seems to be a popular topic, as all the entries in the link up this week shows.

    I have read some and was already moved beyond description by what I read.

    Happy Mother’s Day to you.May 13, 2017 – 11:55 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thank you Kerry! The pillow turning over thing is real, but it’s also real that when kids are young (at least for me), there were days when it was 11am and I couldn’t imagine getting through the next eight hours. We’d already been to the playground, twice, had breakfast, a nap, and read stories. It was endless and now I miss it. So there’s that 🙂
      I’m heading to read yours now… so glad you linked up, as I always am!May 14, 2017 – 12:00 amReplyCancel

  • Moonmoon Chowdhury - Hi Kristi! So much feelings in each word . Loved your beautiful summary of what it is to be a mother . Really liked the part where you talk about the mother and child being each other’s sunshine. And the lovely drawing “barbaerwein” .❤️ Very cute .
    A very Happy mother ‘s day to you too .May 14, 2017 – 1:37 pmReplyCancel

  • My Inner Chick - ***Sometimes, being a mom feels like you’ve lost yourself.

    Sometimes, being a mom feels like you’ve met your better self***

    There are always profound, insightful, beautiful words that come forth when you speak)))

    appreciation from MN.May 15, 2017 – 9:57 pmReplyCancel

  • Linda Atwell - You always write your thoughts beautifully. This is another piece that will stay with me for days and days. Although I loved so many lines in this piece, I especially loved: It’s thanking and reeling of the randomness of YourChild. Of the exact combination of DNA, stardust, hope, and ancestors that made your son. It’s feeling that he’s of you and of something undiscovered and beyond imagination.

    I’ve always thought that any of our spirits could have been born anywhere, to any parents. The randomness is such a perfect word for my thoughts. Tucker is so lucky you are his mom.

    🙂May 19, 2017 – 1:43 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Aw thank you, Linda! You’re so kind! And Lindsey is so lucky you’re her mom. The randomness really is something, isn’t it? Thinking about it all is mind-blowing. xoMay 19, 2017 – 9:59 pmReplyCancel

A name isn’t ever just a name. There’s weight to what we’re called. Sometimes, the weight of a name is measured by generations, or an ancestor that holds special meaning to the ones who named us. We name our children with purpose. The blood we pass on gifts them with the strength of Vikings and nomads […]

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  • JT Walters - They call me jealous because I look at your pictures and see this beautiful woman inside and out, my dear friend and am baffled at how you can think you look old.

    While I was not adopted by another family, I grew up in a Hebrew community and attended Temple, JCC and learned to speak a modest amount of Hebrew which earned me the nickname “Beth”. It is not on any legal document and yet somehow I have Jewish “Beth” invisibly stamped across my forehead so everyone thinks I am complaint. Not so Siste! You know I go by the Science. It is interesting because when growing up I had a Hebrew nickname Beth “the house” and and Arabic last name. I was the walking talking two state solution.

    I do love the Middle Eastern culture when it is warm and inviting. The food is awesome and the people are wonderful. So having that extra name is a blessing.

    As for my son I read him male names out of the baby book and I said, “Kick really hard for your name”. He kicked me to death every time I read the name Alexander. I think it suits him. You have meet him don’t you?May 4, 2017 – 10:22 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - That’s cool about your Jewish first name and Arabic last name! And yes, I think Alexander fits Alex just perfectly. He knew what he wanted even back then! 😀May 5, 2017 – 5:03 pmReplyCancel

  • Linda Atwell - Oh Krisit–I missed you! When I was traveling to Australia/New Zealand and the South Pacific, I didn’t have as much access to internet as I would’ve liked. I just know I missed some really good pieces that would’ve touched my heart. Like this one. The weight of a name. I’ve never had a nickname or been known by any other first name—and have had moments in my life when I was jealous that others did have them. Although I’ve had three last names, I’ve been Atwell longer than any of the other names I’ve held.

    As I read your piece, I loved this particular part:
    Mom feels like letting go of baby and toddlerhood, which I’m not ready for. It also feels like sleeping for an extra two minutes because a boy who calls me Mom rather than Mommy is certainly one who can put on his own underpants. Wipe his own butt.

    And I think you are right. Mom does feel like letting go of baby and toddlerhood. Sometimes Lindsey still calls me mommy and I have to say, it is sweet, it is endearing.

    Anyway, I’m glad to be back in town and reading your beautiful words and connecting with your stories. Hugs.May 5, 2017 – 1:27 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I missed you too, Linda! I love seeing your travel photos on Facebook though, so much. One of these days, you’re going to have to fly through DC to get somewhere and maybe there’ll be a layover and we can meet in person! I love that Lindsey still calls you mommy – it IS sweet. When Tucker isn’t thinking about it, Mommy slips out. I think he’s heard friends call their moms mom and so he tries it on to not be a baby (weep). I’ll get used to it… and Hugs back at you, my friend!May 5, 2017 – 5:06 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - I was going to do this prompt this week, but then I thought, “why break my streak of NOT blogging for so long?” Ha or Ugh. Anyway, I was going to write about my college nickname that seems to have stuck with some of my friends. It was “Flemily” or “Flem” for short (but could also be spelled, “phlegm”). Who would have thought that a nickname meaning “mucus” would have stuck? Hmm, I think that’s a pun too…anyway, I suppose names can and do have weight, and I think it’s fun to think of what we could have been named too. My husband was almost named “Dino” instead of “Jonathan.” I told him there’s no way I would have dated him if his name was Dino, so there ya go — a name can have weight! 🙂May 5, 2017 – 8:38 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - No pressure or anything but the linkup is open through Sunday night if the urge strikes. How did you end up with “Flemily??!!?” You have to write about that! OMG to your husband almost being named Dino. I’m glad they called him Jonathan so you could marry him and have your three awesome boys. Isn’t life weird that way?May 5, 2017 – 5:09 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - Names are so important. We actually didn’t have a name picked for Zilla because we were “so sure” she was a boy. We were scheduled for an induction and before we left figured we should choose a girl’s name just in case. We did and it was the perfect name and a good thing because, well, she’s her! 😀
    I’ll be back with mine for real later.May 5, 2017 – 9:34 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - That’s awesome that you chose her name last minute. My husband and I agreed on Tucker pretty early on… I liked Carter but he’s from Carter County TN and thought it’d be weird. That people thought he was named for there, or something. I’m glad though because Tucker is SO MUCH A TUCKER! 😀May 5, 2017 – 5:10 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie - Momma, this was a bit heavy:). I had no idea that you were called Ester (in the womb). You are so a Kristi! (even more so than Kristine). Bubbly, sunny, pretty Kristi. You name fits you. And four last names…that’s another blog post. ha, ha!May 5, 2017 – 1:44 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Yeah, my bio mom (I later found this out, after I met her), had a sister named Esther who died when she was a kid, so she named me after her. My parents didn’t know of that name when they got me, and I didn’t learn it until years later when I got my papers, and then I didn’t learn the story of her sister until I actually met her a few years back. And aw shucks – thanks for the sweetness. I think Allie fits you perfectly. LOL to the whole other blog post about four last names!May 5, 2017 – 5:12 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerry - I did not know this about your first name. Wow. What was it that shaped you and the name you would soon have in those eight or so days? Interesting to think. You will get used to mom because he will grow into a wonderful young man and you won’t always find it so endearing if he is calling you mommy at a certain age. Life is about not holding on too tightly because we know we’re going to have to let go at some point. It’s astounding to me just how tied to our names we become. I think of mine a lot and others.May 5, 2017 – 1:45 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I think a lot about the eight days… I guess mostly wondering whether they just let me cry or held me a lot or what. It seems that either scenario would affect me for life, although that’s probably over-dramatic. It’s also why I never let my baby “cry it out” — I never wanted him to feel like nobody cared. Anyway. And yeah, I know about not holding on too tightly but wowza sometimes that’s so hard. I think about names a lot too. It usually seems like they fit the people that have them, but if they had a different name, would that fit too?May 5, 2017 – 5:14 pmReplyCancel

  • Just J - Although I really wanted to participate this week, when I saw the prompt I wasn’t quite sure what to do with it, a couple ideas came to mind, but nothing worth writing about. Then I came here and read your powerful post, and you’ve inspired me! Names are very important I think, you chose well for your son, and you have lived well with yours. Your comments on your name/life in your first eight days touched my heart. Knowing that it was your first name gives you the strength it bears, as well as the name you are known by now. I have gone by assorted names, and I still have issues with my given name, as is clear by my ID for this blog… Just J, perhaps a resignation of sorts, or maybe just keeping it simple. I’ll be back before the weekend is over with a post of my own. This was an awesome read!May 6, 2017 – 3:03 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Yay for inspiration – I’m so glad. I saw that you’d linked up and am going to see what you shared about your name (many names) right now.May 7, 2017 – 7:13 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - I didn’t know you were Kristine, or Esther.Esther is the heroine of the Purim story – she was a queen.

    The weight of a name can be a heavy thing – looking back I’m not sure how I committed to any name for my own kids. But I guess “Hey you” would not have worked.May 7, 2017 – 6:41 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - LOL to Hey you although once, my dad tried to name our dog Damnit (instead, the name Junior stuck for the dog). Which Purim story?? I like the queen part… I always pictured Esther as a farm girl. Queen is much more glamorous.May 7, 2017 – 7:28 pmReplyCancel

  • Moonmoon - This is such a wonderful post , Kristi on the significance of the name and how even before the knowledge or comprehension of the name ,we are a feeling of warmth and safety to our newborn and how our name is inextricably connected to memories and a particular tone of address and how our name is just not a name but also what we are to the other in question(e.g.. mom, sis, daughter etc). Thanks for the rich perspectives .
    Best wishes,
    https://aslifehappens60.wordpress.comMay 8, 2017 – 2:41 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thank you so much, Moonmoon!! Isn’t it mind-boggling to think of who we were before we were named and how that shaped us? The identities afterwards, mom, etc. It’s a lifetime of stories, maybe.May 9, 2017 – 12:02 amReplyCancel

  • Kenya G. Johnson - Awww man I had an oldie that I could have linked up about my name. As for CHrisotpher I don’t feel like we named him with purpose. I’ll have to ask my husband why he kept coming back around to the name Christopher. I finally said, “FINE” when I was in labor. But I can’t imagine Christopher with any other name. I know that I got on my husband’s nerves about why not “I had a classmate named that” or “If my friend has a boy then that’s the name she wants”. LOL! With Christopher I said so & so’s dog is named CJ and I wouldn’t want anyone to call Christopher CJ.

    As for Tucker & Kristi, I love your names and couldn’t picture you as anything else. Esther? Definitely not. Glad you’re Kristi.May 8, 2017 – 2:05 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I’m sorry your oldie didn’t get linked. I’d be happy to link it now if you’d like? Maybe I need another similar one… this week’s was continued a little from last week’s of “what I’m not…” and seems to be something that works for people’s stories, I don’t know.
      LOL to “FINE” in labor. I said that a lot during my labor too although not about the name. And thanks for agreeing that Esther is a definitely not, although who knows…if I’d have always been her, maybe I’d still be me? That’s a weird thing to think about. And I LOVE Christopher and Kenya as your names too… so much. Kenya is an awesome name for a billion reasons, and Christopher was one I didn’t have any “but so and so had a son…” stories except that my ex had a son named Christopher. It’s perfect for YOUR Christopher. Also funny – I know a few Christophers and some are Chris, and some are Topher and yours is always Christopher to me. I guess it’s like Kristine. I’m NOT that. Funny. Anyway. Rambling now.May 9, 2017 – 12:07 amReplyCancel

  • Lisa @TheGoldenSpoons - What a great prompt! I wrote mine late, but it was fun thinking about all the different names I’ve been called. One thing we don’t realize about becoming a parent (or at least I didn’t) was how hard choosing a name for your child can be. I mean, they are stuck with it FOREVER, right? I like my name and the names we chose for our girls – although, the oldest has recently announced that she does not like her name and inquired how one would go about officially changing it. HA!May 8, 2017 – 8:32 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Names are so weird. I was thinking at first about what we’re called, mostly because Tucker was going from Mommy to Mom and I do NOT like… but then it made me think of names in general… and you’re right. Choosing a name for our child is HUGE. YIKES to your oldest wanting to change hers. My BFF from college, who has a high schooler, recently agreed to a name and gender identity change. I guess some names don’t end up working, and others define us. Or something? It’s so much more complicated the more you think about it. For me at least.May 9, 2017 – 12:10 amReplyCancel

  • Stephanie - Choosing a name for baby seems to be an easy task before we actually step into it.It is the hardest task ever.May 12, 2017 – 1:28 amReplyCancel

It’s late for a seven-year-old to be going to sleep, and yet, here we are. It’s the kind of late that you don’t tell the neighbors about because it’s a school night and they’re probably sleeping. Or, at least decent enough to be in bed reading or watching TV. We’re laughing though, and laughing makes […]

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  • Lisa @ TheGoldenSpoons - Love it! I often struggle with being enougha as a mom – being enough of everything to all three girls. It’s a lot of pressure to put on ourselves. I have to remember that no parent is perfect & that I would never expect another mom to bee 100% all the time. So why should I expect it from myself? We love our kids fiercely and do the best we can – and that is certainly good enough.April 28, 2017 – 9:14 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Why oh why are we so much harder on ourselves than we are on other people? It’s so true that we would never expect another mom to be 100% all of the time. So why from ourselves? Thanks for hosting with me this week and for the awesome sentence, Lisa!April 28, 2017 – 7:38 pmReplyCancel

  • Debi - Oh Kristi, this is so dear. It’s interesting that we both posted this week about how we want to hold on to certain memories, and also tied that to worrying about our in-the-moment parenting. I think staying up late because of joy is pretty admirable, actually. We certainly do more and more of that as our girls get older, and it works out ok.

    I just had my first experience of waiting up for my teenaged daughter to get home from a party. It was awful and wonderful and made me want to go through her baby book. I say YES, hold on to these moments and REMEMBER whatever you can! That will be enough. 🙂April 28, 2017 – 10:00 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thank you Debi! You’re so sweet. Yikes to waiting up for your teen from a party! The time goes so quickly… (and sometimes, so completely slowly!). Here’s to us remembering what we can and holding on (and looking at baby books when we need to!).April 28, 2017 – 7:40 pmReplyCancel

  • Emily - Your internal dialogue was so relatable. We all feel that way — questioning whether what we do and say is enough. Now that I have three (!) teenagers, who are testing me in all kinds of ways, I wonder if I did enough when they were younger — what I mean is, did I do enough to lay the groundwork so that they now make smart choices and continue to be good and kind humans??April 28, 2017 – 4:00 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hey Emily,
      That makes sense. Sometimes, I feel like that now, even though Tucker is only seven. I see some habits from earlier years that have stuck that aren’t necessarily good (things like, we used to struggle to get him to eat anything and his weight was way lower % than his height…and now, sometimes, I feel like he’s eating more than he needs – it’s a weird side effect). And I think you’ve probably made really good foundations for those awesome boys!April 28, 2017 – 7:46 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerry - Beautiful words Kristi. Strict bedtimes aren’t always the answer, speaking not as a mother, but remembering how mine used to handle that part of the day. As long as he gets his rest, from what you can see. I can’t imagine being the one responsible for a life. Bittersweet.April 29, 2017 – 5:14 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thank you Kerry! I think that the too-late bedtimes are okay, too. So much so that there are times when I’ve let him sleep in and be late for school. Still though, sometimes while I’m lying there with him waiting for him to get more sleepy, I worry that I shouldn’t have let it get so late.April 30, 2017 – 5:51 pmReplyCancel

  • Allison Smith - Kristi, I wish you weren’t s hard on yourself. I always feel sad when I read you posts about not feeling like your good enough. You are the best momma! As for Spanish, we used to have it (and Barrett had French!), before the district ran out of funds. Barrett was the only one form his class hat went, so it’s not unusual to ask for an exemption. I let him go, because I believed it was kind of a break for him. And his teacher told me he loved French music. Believe it or not, he can still count to twenty in french. LOL.April 30, 2017 – 10:24 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hey Allie,
      Mostly, I get over myself and realize that late nights and giggling in the dark are what makes up the good stuff but thank you! That’s awesome Barrett loved French music and can still count to 20 in French (I took four years of it in High School and can’t count to 20!).April 30, 2017 – 7:51 pmReplyCancel

  • Britt - Beautiful. I feel this all myself. Thank you.May 1, 2017 – 11:17 amReplyCancel

  • Dana - I know this feeling well, about not being enough. But I think the fact that we worry about that means that we try as hard as we can, and that has to be enough. And turn it around – aren’t our children enough? We don’t ask for them to be any more than they are. I believe in their hearts, they feel the same way about us.May 1, 2017 – 7:59 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I think you’re onto something with the fact we worry about it means a lot and I love the reminder that we don’t ask for our kids to be more than who they are… thanks, Dana.May 2, 2017 – 3:52 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - I love this – beautiful as always, and wise wise words. The bedtime thing is huge around here. I think I need to relax just a bit in that department. It’s hard, though – she needs the sleep, I need the sleep, but I feel too many nights like we rush and close the door and it feels…unfinished.
    I started a piece for this prompt. And then I went down a very dark rabbit hole I wasn’t expecting and it just got too ugly for sharing. I’m keeping it, though, to finish when I figure out exactly what it was that I wanted to say, or when I’m far enough past this funk to have a more positive point to make than what’s on that page now. xoMay 2, 2017 – 11:12 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I know what you mean about sleep. I feel bad (obviously) about it so often but then when it’s time to leave his room, I feel bad about that too because it being too late is my fault, not his, you know? I often wait for Robert to come home for dinner and I shouldn’t but I should and. Well. It gets late. I’m sorry that the piece took you down a rabbit hole that ended up being ugly and dark.. I have faith that something amazing will come from it though. Send it to me when you’re ready? XO and hugs. I hope the funk blows over soon…May 3, 2017 – 7:55 pmReplyCancel

      • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - I play that should/shouldn’t game all the time. Too often. And all it does it make me nuts. We are so hard on ourselves as parents. I’m hard on myself about everything. And then I stop and think “what am I teaching my daughter by doing this?” Nothing good. Some days that’s the thing that keeps me centered.May 4, 2017 – 11:13 amReplyCancel

        • Kristi Campbell - That’s a good reminder… the whole “what am I teaching my daughter by doing this” thought. I need to do that more often I think. Sometimes, I do the opposite like if Tucker’s being hard on himself, I’ll be hard on myself and then he’ll tell me to not be and I remind him that he was…May 4, 2017 – 7:06 pmReplyCancel

  • Heather Burnett - I love this! I never feel like I am enough! Especially now. Especially working on my son’s IEP. We are waiting on the school to do their evaluations so that we can have a second meeting. I am not patient enough. I do not know enough. I am not prepared enough. I can’t read enough to know enough to go in with enough confidence to advocate for him like he deserves!
    Thank you for this reminder-though…that my five year old boy may feel seen next year if I do more at the school.
    I’ll confess that I have not thought of that!
    Your writing is lovely! Please do not judge my grammar & punctuation here:)) I’m in the car on my phone & I can’t see!!!😀May 3, 2017 – 9:42 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hi Heather,
      Thank you for your sweet comment! Also your grammar and punctuation here was fine as far as I can see. Ah the dreaded IEP meetings. They’re ROUGH, for sure. The advice I always give is to remember you’re the Big Boss. Like, if you don’t agree, don’t sign. Still though. This is the first IEP meeting I’ve been in that I didn’t cry during it. But a few days later, I cried while volunteering at my son’s school because he got a new sound and his speech therapist came over because he was so excited… For the IEP – again. You know best. Trust YOU. (also hugs because IEP meetings suck)May 3, 2017 – 8:10 pmReplyCancel

  • Lux G. - That’s a sweet and powerful lesson to teach your child. I think it’s important that we keep reminding them this beautiful truth so that they can hold on to it when they grow old and times become confusing.

    Thanks for sharing this lovely thoughts.May 3, 2017 – 10:27 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Thank you Lux! I really appreciate your kind words and agree that what we teach kids now is what they’ll hold onto as they enter more confusing times.May 4, 2017 – 7:11 pmReplyCancel

“I’ve got nothing to lose.” This is a thing people say. It’s something I’ve said, I think, although I do not remember when or in what context I may have said it. I suppose it’s true, at times. What have you got to lose in accepting an okay job when you need one, even when […]

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  • Britt - You say this is silly but it’s pretty deep really with wondering about what there really is to lose. Have you heard of the butterfly effect? It’s like that a little. Or traveling to the future or something. You don’t know what you’d miss or change. I really like it and thinking about it a lot.April 21, 2017 – 8:40 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Wow, thanks, Britt. I have heard of the butterfly effect and you’re right – it’s like traveling to the future or something. I don’t know what it’d change but I like thinking about it, too. April 21, 2017 – 9:01 pmReplyCancel

  • Jen - you so made me think about this one. Thanks.April 21, 2017 – 10:29 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerry - Oh my God…you’re writing a novel? So exciting to hear this. What is it about, or are you keeping that to yourself? I don’t believe I’ve heard you mention it before, until now.

    As a writer, as I’m now experiencing, I’ve got nothing to loose…just as long as I don’t let any obstacles that are placed in my path destroy my creative and future dreams. How’s that?

    Thanks for these deep tax time thoughts Kristi.April 22, 2017 – 6:44 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hi Kerry! Yes, I did Nanowrimo two years ago and only got to about 6,000 words because I thought I couldn’t continue without knowing how it’s going to end but I’ve gotten back into it recently and am having fun seeing where each decision that each character makes will take it. I still don’t know how to end it but I think I now know the point of it – it’s got to do with feeling isolated within our communities even as we make tentative connections. There’s friendship but each person has a lot of behind-the-scenes stuff that they keep private and they don’t realize how much they have in common. It’s probably closest to women’s fiction right now but I’m still working on it. I haven’t really mentioned it much because I start and stop so much with it… Anyway. Hopefully more to talk about soon-ish. Not letting obstacles in your path destroy your creative or future dreams sounds perfect to me. Here’s to us both doing that! April 22, 2017 – 8:26 pmReplyCancel

  • [email protected] - It is funny how parenthood gives you a whole new perspective about death, isn’t it? I recently found about about an acquaintance of mine who is about my age and has two young sons – she was just diagnosed with stage 4 cancer. That sends shock waves and really makes you think hard about making the most of every single moment we have.April 24, 2017 – 10:29 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Oh wow, I’m so sorry about the woman you know diagnosed with stage 4. That’s awful, and you’re right that it gives new perspective on everything we do… wow, that’s so sad 🙁 April 24, 2017 – 7:53 pmReplyCancel

  • Allison G smith - I had no idea you were working on a novel! That’s fabulous! Can’t wait to read it😘.April 24, 2017 – 4:20 pmReplyCancel

  • Louise - Deep thoughts here today. I agree you always have something to lose. The older I get the more I’ve come to believe – really believe – life is about choices. Sure, some are bigger than others – but it’s all Econ 101 – there’s always a trade off to every decision made. What do I have to lose sending in an application for a job? Well, the time it took to do that application for one thing! I could have spent that doing something I deemed more valuable if I didn’t really want that job. Would I trade past memories to live a bit longer? No – your life experience makes you who you are. What do I have to lose in that instance? If we are the culmination of our experiences, then I don’t want to lose a bit of myself. Also, fairly certain fate probably wouldn’t let me cherry pick which parts to cut out in trade for longer life… 😉

    So exciting that you are writing a book! Didn’t know that. Hope it is going well!April 24, 2017 – 8:04 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hey Louise,
      Good points about spending time on a job application if you don’t want that job – what could you have done instead during that time to make what you do want to happen, happen? I agree that life experiences make us who we are – the good ones and the bad ones. Also? Fate is a nasty bugger, huh? Well, hopefully the book will end up as something I feel like I can share and not just hit “delete” to over and over, but either way, something towards writing a book is happening, right?April 24, 2017 – 8:25 pmReplyCancel

  • Marcia @ Menooausal Mother - I hate it when I get into these situations where I wonder if by moving forward, did I miss out on something greater if I had just waited for it? But life is too short to put on hold, and I truly do believe in fate. If it was meant t be, it will happen. Most importantly, we need to learn to live without regret.April 24, 2017 – 8:28 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I so agree we need to learn to live without regret, Marcia. I have a 25yo tattoo on my ankle saying that. It’s blurry and faded but still a good reminder. Still, it’s hard to not wonder, right?April 24, 2017 – 9:16 pmReplyCancel

  • Dana - Yay to the novel! (Beta reader -ahem!) You’re right; there is always something to lose. But it’s a choice – is what we lose less than what we have the potential to gain? I ask myself that often when I’m trying to make a decision. Almost always, the answer is that the potential is greater than the possible loss.April 25, 2017 – 7:54 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Yes please be a beta reader! Hopefully, I will finish it one of these days. I think you’re right about the potential being greater than the loss…April 26, 2017 – 8:37 pmReplyCancel

  • My Inner Chick - –I’ve lost so much,
    Yet I’ve also gained so much thru my experiences & pain.
    On the other hand,
    I don’t want to lose one. more. day.
    One. more. moment.
    One. more. second.


    What is your novel about? Tell me!April 26, 2017 – 6:31 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - You’ve lost SO MUCH. <3 Here's to not losing a single second. And to love, because that's huge. Bigger than all.
      The novel is about isolation even in suburbia. Mental illness, special needs, people being people and being too private, not sharing, wanting to share... I promise to tell you more as I figure it out. <3April 27, 2017 – 11:06 pmReplyCancel

  • Dhaval - A good article and The click to tweet going to put on my sight . I hope it makes a difference and it will help to make it easier for others to share on that platform, too.

    Thanks.April 28, 2017 – 4:09 amReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - It’s kind of scary how often your posts seem to come straight out of my own head. I think about death way too much since becoming a parent. Like WAY too much. That’s probably not good. LOL. But I completely understand where you’re coming from.
    I also understand that worry about making choices – what if this choice is smart for now, but not smart later? What if passing up on this job that isn’t great means never finding any? (This hits way too close to home for us right now – I’ll have to catch you up. We need a vidchat or something.) I truly don’t live with regret or what-ifs about the past, but I definitely do worry and what-if about the future. A lot.
    Can’t believe I didn’t get over to read this sooner. April was kind of busy as hell. But I’m glad I did because this definitely hits me where my brain is about a lot of things right now. xoMay 2, 2017 – 11:09 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - What is it about becoming a mom that makes us think about death?!?! GAH. I want to hear about the job. When can we vidchat or something?? I hope everything’s okay with the job decisions – those are so hard because of all the what if’s? I made what I thought was a good job decision and it was the most awful experience of my life BUT then it turned out maybe good because I quit when I was on maternity leave, got paid for it (because it was that bad and the stupidass CEO knew it) and got to stay home with Tucker for a while. Had I had my previous job, that I LOVED, I probably would have gone back to it and put him in daycare. Which I can’t imagine now. So maybe, with deep breaths, know that even bad and regretful decisions end up being the right ones somehow.May 3, 2017 – 7:53 pmReplyCancel

      • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - Weekend maybe? My best times are after Z. is in bed at night. So after 9?
        And I absolutely do think that even things we think are “bad” or “wrong” choices end up being the right ones. Looking back, I always see that. Doesn’t make it any easier in the present.May 4, 2017 – 11:18 amReplyCancel

        • Kristi Campbell - Should we shoot for tomorrow (Friday) around 9? So right that just because hindsight is clear that it’s not any easier in the present. We’re learning though, I think.May 4, 2017 – 7:01 pmReplyCancel

It’s Spring Break. So, unless you’re on vacation for the week, you’re juggling work, life, kids and bizarre schedules where you hope your kids sleep in but they never do the same way they will on Tuesday, once school resumes. Here, we were able to take a couple of days and head to Tennessee, where my […]

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  • [email protected] - Well, I had never heard of Sorbing before, but it sounds like fun. The mirror maze sounds terrifying – I get claustrophobic if I feel like I can’t get out of somewhere. The only other thing I can say is that atlas you went somewhere and did something fun. When you read my post, you’ll see that I spent the week wallowing in self-pity because my oldest was still in school so we did a whole bunch of absolutely nothing!April 14, 2017 – 4:09 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Hey Lisa, you guys should go! You’re not that far from Pigeon Forge, right? (I’m directionally challenged so maybe you are further than I realize). The mirror maze was claustrophobic but also very beautiful. I hope your weekend is filled with more fun!April 14, 2017 – 11:55 pmReplyCancel

  • Allie G smith - Looks like y’all had fun! Would you believe we’ve never been to Pigeon Forge, or Dollywood? And it’s really close to Rich’s parents’ place. We need to go.April 14, 2017 – 6:21 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - OMG you so so have to go. Dollywood is amazing and such fun. Zorbing? All of your kids would love it. You and Rich, too. Or just come back this way so I can see you. That’d work.April 14, 2017 – 11:56 pmReplyCancel

  • Kerry - I had heard of it. I wouldn’t do very well with it because I am claustrophobic. I would rather do anything involving heights, such as the zip lining I hope to book for June 24th. I also don’t do well in attractions where something might jump out and grab me. Glad you all had fun though.April 14, 2017 – 10:54 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Heights freak me out, totally. I’m glad you’re going to do the zip lining thing and hope you can book it. We’re going to a Cub Scouts camping trip that weekend – hopefully, Tucker will be okay. We’re a little nervous about it for a bunch of reasons… most related to who he is. Anyway, can’t wait to read about your zip lining. This is the Niagara Falls trip right? Or is that now???April 14, 2017 – 11:58 pmReplyCancel

  • Britt - This looks amazing thank you!April 15, 2017 – 12:17 amReplyCancel

  • Emily - I gotta say all those activities looked so fun! And even though I have teens now, they’d love that stuff! You are much braver than me when it comes to zorbing – which I’ve never heard of either — I’ve become so wimpy in my old age! I am wondering how you filmed that – or was there a camera inside the bubble? Anyway, very cool!April 15, 2017 – 9:26 amReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - I think your teens would really love zorbing – a lot of the people doing it were adults. I filmed it with a GoPro – it has a hand-held thing and I just held it up to the side. It didn’t work as well in the zig-zag course because I was bouncing around more so it only got the top halves of our heads! The place we went actually gives each ride a GoPro – not sure whether they all do. In hindsight, I should have taken theirs too, and made a cooler video with two perspectives. Oh well, live and learn!April 15, 2017 – 5:00 pmReplyCancel

  • Debi - That all looks like so much fun! I took my girls (with a friend and her girls) to Gatlinburg a couple of years ago, and we missed Pigeon Forge for lack of time. Next time we’ll go for sure and definitely try Zorbing!April 15, 2017 – 1:20 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Oh you’ll love Pigeon Forge! We didn’t get into Gatlinburg on this trip – I wonder if it’s still really affected by the fires. I’d heard that a ton of buildings were destroyed… Let me know when you try zorbing – it was a blast!April 15, 2017 – 5:02 pmReplyCancel

  • Lisa @ The Meaning of Me - I have never heard of zorbing but it does look kind of awesome. I’m sure my little daredevil would love it. Me? Maybe not so much. 😀 I’ve heard great stuff about Dollywood – on the list of places to check out at some point. Our Easter break was just kind of quiet. I spent an unreasonable amount of time in church (choir sings 5 days in a row during Holy Week…what was I thinking???) and the rest of the time we just hung out. Yesterday was the best day – quiet, reading, no commitments.April 18, 2017 – 11:15 pmReplyCancel

    • Kristi Campbell - Zilla would totally love it! I wasn’t comfortable at all on the zig-zag course but had a blast on the downhill! Dollywood is awesome… Just hanging out sounds good – I feel like we need more of that. I had a dentist appt. this a.m. at 9:30. We usually walk to the bus around 8:35 and today I was like “do you want an extra 1/2 hour?” He said yes, and so we took it. I drove him and he was 5 minutes late. But we had that time and I know we both needed it.April 18, 2017 – 11:36 pmReplyCancel

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