May 8, 2018

A Grieving Heart

Up Against A Wild & Magical Toddler
how to grieve with kids around, how to morn with kids around

You know that week when you look back on the last seven days and think, "well, that was brutal?" Those were the words coming off my lips just yesterday.

Last week, my grandfather passed and on instagram you saw our good moments from family walks, to Target runs and or course, our weekly cake pop outing, twice.  Though to be straightforward with not filter, I've been grieving. A lot.

Sure, I've grieved before, but this was the first time a loved one passed while I was a stay-at-home-mom, or what I prefer, "a mom who works within the home."

So there I was...a grieving heart up against a wild and magical toddler. 

I went into survival mode. Consistency with meal times and rules slipped; I was physically tired and emotionally weak since I was of course... just sad. I knew it. My daughter knew it. So did the cashier at Traders Joe’s. 

Although I also knew, I had to feel everything completely, to heal and move forward. To help, each night on the back patio, Steve would let me spill the highs and lows of my day. This is how I deal with most things; just babble and talk.

During these conversations my heart realized something: many of you are feeling some of the same things I was feeling. Maybe the source of our heartache was different, although we're both wrestling with getting mundane tasks complete. Because life just seems overwhelming when your toddler is demanding more fishy crackers, right as she's spills orange juice across your clean kitchen table and your doorbell is ringing. That’s when I thought of you.  

We all have struggles and challenging days, weeks and or seasons. Sometimes we win big and other times we lose.

So, I decided to step out of myself and share what I went through knowing it very well help a lot of you, or just one. 

How I cope may look different from how you cope; everyone's makeup comes with a different manual. I’m just sharing how I handle the grieving process while also caring for my daughter from 6:00am to 6:30pm at the same time. Not an easy juggle!

Now that I'm on my way towards healing, here are a few things that have helped me coupe while also being there for my daughter.

6 Ideas To Help You - Take Care of You With Kids Around

// 1 // Drive
The soft hum of the road gave me time to think and her time to read. A win-win. You can bet the Target run to another city was done on purpose. The night before, I planned it.

// 2 // Fresh Air
I pushed up the windows and slid open the glass door, giving Abby my usual, “go” sign. She knows, this means we’re headed outside. I just let her run loose out there for an hour, allowing me to sit, watch, listen, and morn; I just ate lunch and journaled my thoughts, which accidentally turned into this blog post.

// 3 // Stroll
Abby and I walked through the neighborhood.  Letting her lead and explore kept her happy and, in turn made me happy. I could just be.

// 4 // Spoil
Maybe lunch turns into two snacks. Is that really a biggie? I let her watch Mickey Mouse cartoons. We went out for cake pops, twice. We just did things. These little things made Abby and I feel good, and naturally lifted my spirit and made me realized it’s going to be ok.

// 5 // Reflect
For me, I need to talk. My husband Steve wouldn’t argue about this one bit when it comes to me! I must interact with others and Steve’s often first in line. You may already know what works for you: journaling, meditating, yoga, exercise, or crafting. Whatever helps you let it all out. I made this a high priority. (Thanks for listening, Steve!)

// 6 // Looking Forward
I decided on Thursday that going for a cake pop was more than ok! Why not go twice in one week? If I’m the boss and the boss want’s two cake pops, then the boss gets two cake pops.

We all have big wins and big loses in life. May this post let you know that you are not alone. Sometimes we’re up and other times we’re down. Feeling is a major part of life. 

May you know you're always strong, beautiful, and capable of great things - even when your toddler is demanding more fishy crackers, right as she's spills orange juice across your clean kitchen table and your doorbell is ringing. That’s when I thought of you. 

XO - Stephanie

If you liked this post you might also like Motherhood Funhood.


  1. Beautiful, Steph! Granddad would be so proud -- he always was and always will be. :)

    1. Oh well thank you! He sure was very close to me and our family. It was very hard to say good bye, though I'm so glad we did. Plus, I know he's always with us.