Hello there ~ I'm Leah

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Welcome to this space where I try and notice both the hard and the beautiful to make a place where we can practice showing up with our whole self.

My twitter used to bio reads as: Living life with joyful passion. Trying to follow Jesus. Wife. Mama to three kiddos. Lifelong learner, IBCLC, volunteer, traveler, gardener, creator. As of 2017 it now also reads cancer survivor. Having cancer changed everything.

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The photo above is a fancy one the family photographer we use took for me, but below is much more likely what I will look like if you met up with my while I was living my ordinary, everyday life. Messy hair, likely hat or ponytail, wrinkles by my eyes and sun spots. 

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I've been married for 20 years and that too has changed everything. When I think about twenty years and my 19 year old self saying 'I do' I can hardly believe it myself. We certainly couldn't even have imagined what the future would hold - the heart wrecking losses, but also the absolute deep, soul altering gifts we have experienced together including helping each other heal. My husband is supportive, fun and truthful and I totally scored when we got married. Along with the many things we share, we have lots of differences, including different passions and beliefs and we like it that way.

We have three kiddos Liam (11), Raine (8) and Haven-Kate (who I always referred to as the baby but we have no babies anymore is six!) Being a mother is amazing, I love it all, even though some days I feel overwhelmed and do things I don't love like yell.

We are lifelong learners, which is my preferred way of referring to our version of homeschooling, as for us, our days look very little like they would if my kiddos went to school. We all love to learn and I hope to provide my children with the support and time they need to discover and pursue their own dreams and passions.

I am an IBCLC (registered lactation consultant) and love to support women and families on their breastfeeding journey (whatever that looks like for them), as I believe it not only makes a huge difference in the short and longterm physical/mental/emotional health of babies and their mothers, but also can impact one's overall parenting journey in such a beautiful way.

I volunteer with a mother to mother relational support group in the inner city. These women have touched my heart and changed my life, in ways words could never express and I am thankful to them for giving me so much.

I believe in God and try hard to remember that God is love. With all the day-to-day tragic things that happen in the world, I sometimes have heated words for s/he. I just discovered and inside truly believe this quote from Henri Nouwen “While my friend always spoke about the sun, I kept speaking about the clouds, until one day I realized that it was the sun that allowed me to see the clouds.” So my heated words are probably misdirected, but I'm still growing.

Many people I know and love have been hurt by organized religion, not to mention that sometimes the church really messes up what God is trying to do here, so it is not without some hesitation that I share about trying to follow Jesus. Also because, calling myself a Christian or follower of Jesus, I worry about how crappy I make Jesus look just by saying that due all to my own shortcomings! But I have freedom at this point in my life to love my own (while not perfect, certainly trying to follow Jesus) church community passionately AND have understanding why people have different beliefs. Most of the time I experience that we can love and respect each other, differing beliefs aside. Luckily I grew up Lutheran, so I have never felt a need to convert anyone anyway (ahem!)

Someone wise once told me the only thing we can share with authority is our own story. I believe sharing stories is beautiful and life changing.

I feel most alive by the water, I feel God there and am always longing for more.