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bloom (blüm),
 n. a flourishing, healthy condition;
 the time or period of greatest beauty: 
v. to produce or yield blossoms;
 to flourish or thrive.

The past few weeks caught me off guard. I suppose that I knew what was coming, but to some degree, I had my head buried in the sand. I was trucking along for so long and I wasn’t taking stock, not really.

A few days before my birthday, M. and I were hit with (what we now believe was) a stomach flu. Sickness is always difficult, but being that sick with a toddler and without a healthy partner to fall back on, was more difficult than I could have imagined. For me, the sickness lasted five full days — straight through my thirtieth birthday and Roman’s first birthday. All of this also happened to be during the week leading up to Roman’s big birthday bash. Gratefully, Roman was spared from the stomach bug, but then, on the day before his big birthday party, he came down with a high fever.

I’m not one to embrace the idea of luck. I believe that — with the exception of a very few instances in life — there is no such thing as luck. We make our own luck. Most of life is a result of the decisions that we make, for better or worse.

But let me tell you something, I was very sick at such an important time and then a leak sprung in our living room ceiling and then Roman got a fever for the second time ever on the day before his birthday party… And for a few moments there, I was cursing my unlucky stars and sure that a black cloud had formed above me. I started to believe that there was such a thing as bad luck, and that I had it.

It didn’t take long for me to realize that things weren’t really so bad. I mean, seriously, a stomach bug, a leaky roof, and a cranky baby are nothing more than inconveniences — small-time trifles in a world that can be truly awful. In the grand scheme of things, if there is such a thing as luck, I am as lucky as they come. Still, it was a rough patch. In my mind, I had imagined celebrating our birthdays in small, special ways. I wanted to write and reflect. I wanted to feel those days deeply. But the reality was far different. Instead of all that, I was rushing to the bathroom every half hour, sick as a dog, and fighting to keep my house from becoming a full-blown danger zone for Roman.

Sometimes, we have shit weeks. (I’ve been having a shit six months, truth be told. But that’s a story for another day and goes much deeper than stomach bugs and leaky roofs.) But the thing about shit weeks, and shit years even, is that eventually they end.

On Saturday we celebrated Roman’s birthday with all of our closest friends and family. The forecast had called for nothing but rain — and out of the three-hour party — we had about two hours of gorgeous sunshine. Yes, it torentially down-poured for a good half-hour and the winds blew like crazy, but before that rain and after that rain — we had sunshine. The children played in the grass, we all drank good drinks and ate good food and had good laughs. Camp Roman was everything that I dreamed it would be and everyone came together to celebrate the greatest blessing in my life. It was incredible and magical. I literally couldn’t have done it without a few truly wonderful helping hands — you guys know who you are.

So, in the end, after all of that rain and after the sun came out again, I left the party for a few minutes and took a short walk on my own. I noticed the lilacs blooming at the far end of the park — those gorgeous purple blooms that smell lovelier than any dream. And I was reminded that for every hard time, there is something equally as beautiful waiting for us on the other side. Sometimes the hard times are real, real bad; but we get through them just the same. And if we look hard enough, we’ll always find that beauty on the other side.


“Bloom” is the May writing prompt of The Mommy Blogger Collective. In addition to a monthly writing prompt, the collective hosts a monthly blogger featurette. This month we are featuring Misty of Momista Beginnings. A few words from Misty — I’m Misty, the southern California blogger behind Momista Beginnings. I began this blog while pregnant with Mia over two years ago to create a space for mamas out there to connect with their inner “momista.” According to me, a momista is a devout follower and lover of motherhood who takes her role to the next level. She uses her strengths to create the best childhood for her kids through activities, traditions, adventures, exploration and experiences. My blog aims to inspire all of this. Other bits of me make up my blog as well, like my passion for photography, art, crafts, my love for baking and cooking and family updates. I’m an ex art teacher of over 10 years and my art projects for kids make appearances from time to time, too. You can also find me on Bloglovin’, Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and at my photography website and its Facebook page!

/// The Mommy Blogger Collective /// Christina, Courteney, Dena, Erica, Erin, Gillian, Katie, Misty, Nicole, and Renée. ///


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14 thoughts on “Bloom: A Little Life Update”

  1. I love this post so much, Dena!! It is so beautiful and perfect and made me tear up. You are such a strong woman and I admire you so much. I also think I need a little bit of your perspective. Sometimes within hard times, it is hard for me to see that there could be a light at the end of the tunnel! And I love how you coined the terms “shit week” and “shit years”. Perfect. 🙂

  2. Beautiful! And it is hard sometimes to look at the positive but you are doing such a great job. You really do make people smile and help us all look on the bright side. 😉

  3. Bravo on such a well written post! It’s crazy hard to gain some perspective during the most awful of times. This is something I’m most definitely working on. I notice that when a few things go wrong for me in my life, I tend to start thinking of EVERYTHING that’s bothering me and that I’ve been holding in and I just start feeling sorry for myself, thinking I’ve got it bad or asking the universe why I can’t catch a break. Seriously?? I’ve got it pretty damn good and I hate when I get in funks like that because it makes me feel like I’m an ungrateful person and I’m really not. Good for you for taking that walk and realizing that there’s so much good waiting for you at the end of your shit week. I think I need to put up post-its around the house with positive affirmations or hang up more uplifting quotes and inspirations around the house for visual reminders of how I should be thinking, how I want to think. Happy birthday, Roman! I’m so glad everything went well on his big day. Sounds like you made the absolute best of it and that’s truly how to live each day.

  4. Ah, Dena, I’ve had those dark times you talk about. Where you never see the sun – then it breaks, just ask you’ve described. Gorgeous all around. XOXO

  5. You know I just wrote about luck a few days back. I, too am going through road bumps. And I thought I was the only one! Thanks for sharing. Your writing always inspires me the most!

  6. There are definitely just shit times in life! I’m sorry you have been having one of them mama! It will end, they always do. I know what you mean about kind of knowing it’s coming. Once things have been going well for awhile, I start getting worried and just wait for shit to hit the fan. But, without those shitty times, we wouldn’t appreciate the good times as much! Hope you have a wonderful week mama and Happy Mother’s Day to you!

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