The Good Stuff


The Good Stuff | Columbia SC Moms Blog

I realize I’m in a weird transition period of my life. A moment when I look back and don’t see the anger or pain or troubles of my past. Instead, I see the beautiful moments. The moments that make everything about life worth living. And as I reminisce on these moments, I beg for just a few more minutes, just to hold on to those moments of pure happiness.

I recently asked my husband if he was sure he didn’t want any more children. My daughters are five and seven. My ovaries don’t know if they’re done and have been sending me the baby bug. Just looking back at the rough stages of parenthood, makes me wonder if want to do it again.

I sat there and realized, that as difficult as I thought the newborn stage was, I miss it so incredibly much. The snuggles. The smell. The sweetness. I remember how soft the faces of my babes were. How the little fine hairs clung to the tops of their heads. These moments overtake the memories of pregnancy pain (I cried the last three weeks of my pregnancy with my youngest because she stretched my stomach so much that I was in literal pain each time she moved). Instead of remembering the sleepless nights, I blissfully remember the late-night cuddles of just me and babes.

My husband says “but remember how hard it was when they were toddlers? And potty training?!” Yes, I remember those struggles. I remember hating that stage. But more so I remember the excitement when they’d pee-pee on the potty, the joy when they learned something new, the silliness of the conversations, the look in their eyes with wonder and amazement. As much as I disliked the struggles of toddlers, their souls are enveloped in a beauty, an innocence, something so pure.

My husband often reminds me of the mouthy, not-so-nice children we seem to have now. Instead, I see moments sitting in my oldest daughter’s room, just talking to her. Saying end of the night prayers with my youngest. Giggles and squeals as daddy chases them around the house. The delight on their faces when we do something special, even if it is the same old family pizza and movie night. And of course, the excitement in their voices as they tell us about their day (even if it takes an hour to tell a five-minute story).

Each stage of raising children comes with its own struggles. As parents, we’ve all doubted we could actually get through that specific stage. Here I am, looking back at those difficulties, only seeing visions of the amazing moments that are part of childhood. 

Are we done? I don’t know. I do know that all those difficult times, those difficult stages, have an incredible amount of happiness laced in. Sometimes, they may not be overly evident, but they’re there. And they’re amazing. As the girls become older, I’m going to look for more of these moments, and enjoy them now, while we’re in it.

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Passionate in all things in her life, Jenelle learned many lessons on the road to finding herself. The beginning of her journey began when she met her husband, Alan. He swept her off her feet giving her the wings she needed to fly. To this day, Alan is supportive of all the crazy ideas that creep into her head. Whether it is to compete in Obstacle Course Races (most weekends during the summer, you can find Jenelle, Alan and kiddies climbing walls, jumping over fire, crawling through barbed wire, and flipping tires in the muddiest of places), completely overhauling the family’s diet to fresh healthy foods (clean processed foods have taken over their lives, assisting them in losing a combined 130 lbs in the course of a year and allowing them to be in the best shape of their lives), or deciding to up and move the family 10 hours away to Lexington, South Carolina. Born and raised in the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania, Jenelle grew up in an area where everyone knew her family name (this was especially enjoyable as a teenager – note the sarcasm). She graduated from the local university, East Stroudsburg University, Magna Cum Laude with a B.S. in Psychology. She was a stay-at-home mom of two beautifully silly daughters, Riley (6) and Emma (4) when it was decided to move to South Carolina. It was a big change. Jenelle went from “knowing everyone” to knowing essentially no one. Every day is a new experience, new journey, learning to meet people, and learning to take herself out of her comfort zone even at the risk of being completely awkward.


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