Caring for Moms Who Suffer a Miscarriage – Why Moms Matter

maureenIt was over breakfast at Denny’s that Maureen Day and her husband shared some special news with their four children, aged 7 to 20. They were expecting a new baby.  The reactions were initially mixed, but it wasn’t long before everyone was embracing the idea of a brand new addition to the family.

Around 8 weeks Maureen began spotting but didn’t think much of it – An ultrasound that allowed her to see her baby and hear that precious heartbeat convinced her everything was fine.  But after spotting again at 11 weeks, she was stunned by the nurse’s words, “Well, we’re not seeing what we would normally see….” She says she will never forget the image of the black hole on the monitor as the nurse moved the wand over her belly.

Maureen was amazed by the depth of her grief. For weeks, she was consumed by tears and a feeling of numbness.  Despite being surrounded by family and friend, Maureen felt alone.

kitIt was during this tragic time that HeavenBornwas ‘born’. Maureen created it as a not-for-profit that provides a tangible source of comfort – a handmade pillow, as well as a simple booklet that offers help in handling the physical and emotional challenges a mother in this position will face.

Maureen creates the pillows by hand with the help of some generous women. It is her goal to make these pillows available to all mothers who experience this type of tragedy. Many of the HeavenBorn pillows are now being given to mothers in local hospitals at their time of loss. HeavenBorn exists solely based on donations and volunteers who donate their time to create these small tokens of love. If you would like to donate your time…or you are interested in starting a HeavenBorn chapter in your area, email Maureen at Maureen@heavenborn.com.

Join us on a SPECIAL DAY (THURSDAY) for Why Moms Matter on Blog Talk Radio to learn more about Maureen and the amazing work she does for mothers experiencing the pain of miscarriage.

The value in friendships – Why Moms Matter

The older I get, the more I value the friends I have.  True friendship as an adult, as a mom, takes time and effort.  It isn’t easy because we all have so much ‘life’ spinning around us – our families, our homes, our work (either at home or away from it). 

We have carpools and soccer games, dinner times and preschool graduations, doctors appointments and teacher conferences, family vacations and work obligations – to say nothing of taking care of your home, or spending quality time with your kids and significant other.

And yet, we manage.  Because our friends matter.  They keep us sane, help us navigate the minefield of motherhood and even guide us through pain.

It doesn’t matter how you met your ‘best friends’ – it matters only how you treat them and how they treat you.

Take Brandy Tanner and Dwan Perrin.

They met online.  The entirety of their friendship has been via the Internet and phone. And yet, they are there for each other – they share a mutual respect and loyalty.

They nominated EACH OTHER as a Mom Who Matters.

dwanfamilyBrandy on Dwan: “Dwan is extraordinary because she is a single mother of three children.  No matter how hard life may be financially and emotionally for Dwan, she is still a Mom who does extraordinary things for her children.  She gives all she has to them and tries her best to make money working from home.”

Dwan believes her most important job as a mom is to teach unconditional love by example. This is a philosophy she lives daily as she cares for Tapanga who is 11, 7 year old Gabby and almost 3 year old Noah. 

It was while dealing with Gabby’s extensive medical problems that Dwan moved from the corporate world to working at home full time, while caring for her children.  Gabby suffered a pediatric stroke in utero and has since struggled with  Cerebral Palsy and Epilepsy.  In only her 7 short years, she has had 5 major surgeries – 2 of them on her brain – one of them only a week ago on her arm and hand.

dwangabby1With Dwan by her side, Gabby sees 6 specialists and 5 therapists on a regular basis.  This is modeling unconditional love. And she constantly supports her family on all levels, “I work from home literally around the clock, in between caring for kids, doctor appointments, running errands, maintaining the house and sleeping.”

How is it even possible to balance everything Dwan has on her plate? “I take one day at a time and just when I think I can’t handle another day, I remember my children NEED me.  I am the one they count on and I know God would never hand me more than I can handle.”

And of course, she has Brandy, “We talk daily and learn on each other constantly. I’d be lost without Brandy!”

Dwan on Brandy: “Although Brandy is married, her husband works at least 6 days a week and she basically has to run the home/children on her own.  Along with breastfeeding, diaper changing (she has 2 in diapers), dealing with a child with ADHD and juggling business, she makes time to be a best friend to me.”

brandykids1Balancing life as a work at home mom with raising three children – a 6 year old daughter and 2 sons who are 2 years old and 10 months, Brandy’s days are full. And yet, the only thing she would change would be to have her husband around a bit more.  She worries about the stress he endures working a 6 day, 50 hour week.

Though she does it all at home and manages a new business, Brandy considers having two small guys in diapers to be one of her biggest challenges, “it seems when I am changing one, the other wants mommy all to himself.”

brandyfamily1Clearly, being a Mom is a priority for Brandy, “I hope to teach all three of my children that it is ok to make mistakes as long as you learn something from those mistakes and move forward in a positive direction.”

Helping her to constantly move in that positive direction: Dwan.

Both Moms are in the midst of managing blogs (visit Dwan and Brandy) and starting new businesses online.  Brandy is an online virtual asistant and Dwan will soon be launching her new business - a definite passion for her.

Join us Friday on Why Moms Matter on Blog Talk Radio at 12:30PST/2:30CST to learn more about these amazing moms who use their friendship to keep them afloat on their best and most challenging days.

And don’t forget to keep telling us about Moms Who Matter - we have been amazed by each and every nomination.

Mom it Forward – Why Moms Matter

She is drive, determination and discipline personified.

She is motivated to make a difference in the world – any way she can.

It is this calm but focused spirit that drove Carissa Rogers to nominate Jyl Pattee as a Mom Who Matters.

jyl-and-carissa_for-about-page“I can tell you first hand that she truly cares about people and not in that fake kind of way,” Carissa explained in her nomination. ” And Carissa should know – she and Jyl have partnered on a one-of-a-kind website and social media driven community – MomItForward.

Their goal is “to change the world one mom at a time by focusing on three pillars: me, mom, and my world.” Carissa and Jyl believe changing the world starts with you.  They contend your ability to impact the world is magnified by your desire to care for yourself.

But where does this passion to ‘change the world’ come from? “My parents instilled in me a love of serving and a sense….almost a duty…of being actively involved and doing my part, ” Jyl explains. Calling her mom the ‘rock’ of her family, Jyl credits her love, her commitment to her family and her ability to keep her chin up to the woman who raised her.

The lesson in ‘keeping her chin up’ has been especially handy.

Diagnosed with Epilepsy at age 14, Jyl spent years denying the disease.  It wasn’t until a very public seizure at the age of 23 forced her to come to terms with the condition. At that time,  she was able to truly embrace the notion that nothing could hold her back.  During that seizure, Jyl fell and broke her jaw in 3 places.  A mere three months later, a fall fractured her skull and left her with an epidural hematoma.  That hematoma could have killed her, but fast acting EMTs recognized the problem and likely saved her life.

Jyl’s epilepsy is completely controlled by medication, so she says she is not forced to deal with the day-to-day of the condition as many patients are. 

mom-and-boys_looking-away1A mom to 2 beautiful, healthy boys – Chase is 8 and Connor is 6 – Jyl does not take her role lightly.  She was faced with an excruciating decision when she decided to have children – as she was not able to go off her medication during pregnancy. Jyl was very concerned about birth defects. Fortunately, both boys are perfect.

Jyl now works to balance an extremely full schedule – a family to take care of and a growing social community to oversee and expand.  With the help of her husband, they make sure they carve out both family time and couple time each week. And it is her mom who gets a little extra credit here too – for reminding her kids playing in a messy house is more important than having a clean house that isn’t conducive to play.

MomItForward is adding success after success to its resume – including a thriving social event – GNO or Girl’s Night Out – held every Tuesday evening on Twitter.  Each week the community exchange focuses on one topic.  As many as 500 people have joined in at one time. 

Also to their credit, Jyl and Carissa are proud of the ‘mom it forward’ events happening all over the United States: raising $15 Thousand  and a ton of awareness for http://yehu.org and http://basabody.comwhich will go towards helping mompreneurs have sustainable incomes in Mombasa, Kenya, raising $1500 for  FeedingAmerica.org to provide Thanksgiving dinners to hungry families, as well as a number of family oriented service projects.

Be sure to visit MomItForward to learn more.

Join us today (Friday!) on Why Moms Matter on BlogTalkRadio at 12:30PDT/2:30CDT to learn more about Jyl and her passion for MomItForward.

If you know a Mom Who Matters, nominate her!

SPECIAL GUEST – KATHY IRELAND On Why Moms Matter This Week!

kathyireland

 

You may know her for her face and her body.  Her modeling career began when she was only 17.  She was featured in the annual Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Edition 13  consecutive years.

Hopefully you know her for her business savvy. She is the CEO of Kathy Ireland Worldwide.  Her brand includes everything from furniture t0 home goods to clothing to fitness videos.

This Friday, meet and understand Kathy Ireland as a Mom Who Matters.

 

kathymomNominated as a Mom Who Matters, by a close friend, Kathy is described as a mother of 3 who does it all, including, “school pick ups and drop offs, dance classes, guitar lessons, skateboarding, homework, school functions, church and being a Sunday school teacher“. 

This is, of course,  all on top of being a CEO, a regular volunteer for several organizations and the author of a new book, Real Solutions for Busy Moms.

We will be talking to Kathy about balancing it all and her advice for moms. She has done the research – she is a mom and she has some advice!

Do you have a question you would like us to ask Kathy?  Please share it with us.  We will do our best to cover everything you want to know. If we use your question, we will mention that YOU wanted to know!

kathyfamily

 

And then join us live on Friday for a special hour long show on Why Moms Matter on Blog Talk Radio at 12:30PDT/2:30CDT.

If you want to nominate a future Mom Who Matters, we would love to hear from you!

Running for her Life – Why Moms Matter

jefftrinaNine years ago, Trina Pockett at the doctor for a routine pregnancy check up.  She was 4 months pregnant with her second child, a daughter, Kate.

She had noticed a small lump in her neck and simply decided to ask about it.

The answer was not what she expected.  She had cancer.

At the young age of 23.  With a toddler at home.  With a baby in her belly. 

Trina had cancer.

At the time of her diagnosis, this young mother did not consider herself to be a fighter, but she claims her ‘inner fighter emerged’ as she began the process of beating the cancer.

momkateShe had 2 months of treatment while she was pregnant.  After she gave birth to Kate, she settled in for chemo and radiation.

How is it possible to be a mom, especially to very young children, while undergoing something that is so physically draining?

momboys“The kids were an absolute blessing to me because they gave me a sense of purpose. On the days when I was most tired and discouraged, the kids gave me a sense of purpose. Even though I was sick, they still needed a mom.”

Moms matter – they still give everything they have, even when they are taking on the fight of their life – literally.

Trina says the kids routine kept her going through the tough days and the kid’s hugs gave her the push she needed to make it through.

kidsThis difficult journey changed Trina as a parent, “. There are days that I watch my children and in awe that I get to be their mom. It is a true joy.  I have tried to instill into them the importance of making the most of each day. I want them to pursue their goals and dreams. ”

And now, cancer free – Trina and her husband, Jeff,  have added another little one to their family and she is now tackling a dream of her very own.  Find out what that dream is on Why Moms Matter Blog Talk Radio at 12:30PDT/2:30CDT

Trina is also being featured on Lifetime TV as part of their Clean Start Challenge 2009.

If you would like to nominate an ordinary, extraordinary Mom, we would love to hear from you!

A great big Thank You!

I think you know I am excited-thrilled-over-the-moon about the Why Moms Matter Project and the Blog Talk Radio Show I am co-hosting (every Friday 2:30CST) with 2 of my favorite people – Josh and Rebecca from MomFaves.

And you might even know we are doing a Why Moms Matter Blog Tour.

What you might not know is that I love (and by love I mean come-here-so-I-can-give-you-a-great-big-squishy-hug) the wonderful and amazing bloggers who have joined the Tour and highlighted what we are doing.  By bringing attention to Why Moms Matter – each and every one of you is honoring the Moms you know, and even those you don’t. 

Being a Mom is easily one of the most fantastic and challenging jobs in the world – and we want everyone to know that Moms Matter and WHY!

So, here is my great big thank you to the Moms who have played along on our Blog Tour so far:

Mishelle at SecretAgentMama,  Sarah at OhanaMama, Deanna at DomesticChicky, Jennifer at TheDirtyShirtBlog, Christine at FromDatesToDiapers, Kim at CraftyMamaof4, Brandy at WritingsofaWAHM, Jen at TheClassyCloset , Carol at SheLives and to Bonggmom!

(If, by some terrible trick of fate I have not seen your Blog Tour post, please send me the link – I want to express my gratitude!)

If you aren’t already keeping up with these ladies – you should!

There are more bloggers honing their Blog Tour skills as we speak and I can’t wait to share them with you!

If would like to join the Blog Tour – just shoot me an email at danielle@extraordinarymommy.com and I’ll be happy to send you the details. The Tour will still be running all next week.

And, of course, to nominate a Mom doing ordinary, extraordinary things – hop on over to WhyMomsMatter.

You won’t want to miss the Mom we are highlighting tomorrow. She is a source of inspiration to many, but especially to adoptive moms and women working through fertility treatments.

Join us tomorrow (Friday) at 12:30PST/2:30CST on WhyMomsMatter on Blog Talk Radio.

Blog Tour! Why Moms Matter – Blog Talk Radio

You, Mommys of the world, YOU matter.  You know that, right? 

I know, it is easy to forget in the day to day of nose wiping, diaper changing, homework doing, manner teaching, attention paying, family feeding and all-around-loving that you do, but I’m here to tell you, YOU MATTER. 

Amidst all the joy, the challenges, the sacrifice, You are still You – a woman, yes, a mother, yes.  And what you do with your family every day is truly extraordinary.

joshandrebeccaJoin the  MomFavesteam of Josh and Rebecca Unfried and me (Danielle) every Friday on our Why Moms Matter Blog Talk Radio Show, beginning this week, March 6th at 12:30PST/2:30 CST as we highlight ‘Ordinary Moms with Extraordinary stories.”

 

img_1080The Why Moms Matter Project recognizes the beauty and significance of Mothers.  Each week on the show, a new mother, or grandmother will be highlighted for being an extraordinary example of motherhood. You will hear stories that make you laugh and some that make you cry, but every story, every woman, will remind you Why Moms Matter.  Each week’s featured Mom will also be profiled on www.ExtraordinaryMommy.com and on www.WhyMomsMatter.com.

And, don’t forget to nominate any mom you know who is going above and beyond for her family.  No sacrifice is too small, no challenge too easy – Nominees do not need to be bloggers.  We have already received some amazing stories – we know you know an Extraordinary Mommy. We want to hear from you!

As a special treat for Mother’s Day, we will be combining all the stories we recieve into an E-Book to be given away for FREE!  Listen to the show for more details!

All this week and next, the Why Moms Matter Blog Talk Radio Show  will be ‘touring’the blog world.  Check back each day to follow our travels.  If you would like to join the Blog Tour by highlighting WhyMomsMatter on your blog, send me an email at danielle@ExtraordinaryMommy.com.