Monday, March 24, 2014

Tidings of Birthday Joy continued: Ali turns 30!

Ten years ago, I was living in Nauvoo, Illinois. As I waited out the final months until my missionary's return, I soaked up church history in a most special and unique way while studying at the Joseph Smith Academy. The week of my 20th birthday, my parents came out for a visit. It was memorable, to say the least.

March 17, 2004
My last birthday as Alison Mays
My Dad sent me this photo, taken on my 20th birthday, last week. Seeing this photo, the day after I turned 30, sent me into full on reflection mode. That's right, blog. You're in trouble. Here comes another poem a.k.a the reason why I'm still tripping over ignored mounds of laundry in my living room. 

An Ode to Turning Thirty

They say, “Turning thirty is hard!
 You should feel sad, horrified, upset!
Instead, can we please adopt the notion
that this next chapter’s the best yet?

When looking back, I will confess,
life granted us great blessings.
A marriage, four babies, adventures abroad…
these memories belong to my twenties.

At twenty years old, we were reunited
after two long years apart.
Married two months later, we wasted no time;
We were ready for our life to start!

Crazy in love newlyweds,
our days were full and busy.
From work to school and back again,
it was enough to make me dizzy.

Somewhere in between we managed to find
the money to visit Hawaii.
But first there was Mexico and when we returned
I was expecting someone tiny!

And then, at the age of twenty two,
Our world was forever changed
As I held my first born child ~ instant love ~
A bond so beautiful, never again to be the same!

My sweet Eliza captured my heart.
I feel eternally blessed to be her Mother.
And what do you know? What happened next?
13 months later I was expecting her brother!

It was at that time that we landed in Germany.
 We felt guided by the Lord’s hand.
As we immersed ourselves in something new,
forever to celebrate our Adventures in Deutchland!

Returning to Utah it was time to prepare
For a new baby and his final year of school
We were poor and went without many “things”
But staying at home with my kids, was (for us) the right thing to do.

March of 2008, Henry would come two (+) weeks early
My plan to turn twenty four was foiled!
Even so, we were thrilled that our family had grown.
Enamored by him, this Mother of two, felt spoiled.

 A few months passed, graduation finally arrived!
And with it came dreams of a house.
A place to grow our family...but wait a minute!        
You’re accepting a job in the South?!

We said Hello to South Carolina
and tearfully bid farewell to Salt Lake.
It was a time of great excitement, shock and at times,
overwhelming heart ache.

It proved to be a wise choice
as I’ve watched him progress in his career.
Once more his work ethic blew me away,
while Motherhood seemed to be kicking me in the rear!

My cooking abilities grew inside my kitchen, (thank you, Mels Kitchen Cafe!)
I socially crawled out of my shell.
My confidence as a Mother grew so much
And I owe that surge to my friend, Michelle.

In 2010 our own Southern Belle
would make a grand entrance into our lives.
Our darling Charlotte Marie was born;
Three kids, away from family, how would we survive?

And just like that, it happened in a blink,
He aced another job interview.
March of 2011, I was boarding a plane,
with our precious little crew.

For the past three years,
We’ve made South Ogden our home;
where roots have been planted, 
and our small children have grown.

Feeling more settled than in times past,
we asked God to {please} send us one more.
Another child of God to love and raise;
we expanded from three to four.

Forrest Daniel Flegal
Is our beloved little baby
“Is he your last?” Dad always says ‘Yes!’
While Mom says, “Erm… maybe?!”

I’m not going to lie. Motherhood is hard.
Still, life is bright, full and busy.
And just like our days as newlyweds,
this Mama, at times, feels dizzy.

I wouldn’t trade a second.
Not even those that feel frustrating, hard or scary
The world may negate my choice to have four children,
stay home and at a young age marry.

But let it be known, this will be my life’s work;
though it may seem a menial and simple venture.
I understand its importance and love my family fiercely
They are my greatest adventure.

Here's to thirty.


Camille said...

Love this! I have been feeling a lot the same as I hit 30 last week. My 20's have a lot of huge milestones and memories, and I'm looking forward to what the 30's might bring. Love your writing!

Vause Family said...

I love all those pictures, my beautiful friend! So glad we could chat on your special day!

Lacey said...

Happy Birthday! Thirty is great! Enjoy celebrating!

Allison and Josh said...

You're so cute, Ali! I love how you write. Here's to 30!!

*Jess* said...

you are awesome :)

Katie Jensen said...

wow, we are old. Please help ease me into turning 30 in September when I do so.

Meg said...

Happy (belated) Birthday! Quite an impressive 30 years!