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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Mom of the Month - Danielle Crook

I'm always excited each month to celebrate a hard working, amazing mother in our group with the Mom of the Month recognition, but this month I'm SO happy we chose who we did. Danielle Crook is our November Mom of the Month (yeah, I'm a month late, so what?! :) ), and she's SO deserving! She's so incredibly honest in this piece - sharing something so difficult about her experience with Post  Partum Depression after the birth of her first child, difficulties with medical issues, and more. I'm in awe of her honesty and know it's going to help other moms feel a little more normal and relatable.

Thank you, Danielle, for sharing your story with us.


Images shared from Danielle Crook 

1. Describe your children in 3-5 words. 
Articulate, imaginative, strong
2. How old are your children?
Kennedy Rae, will be 3 Jan 13th and baby girl Crook due Feb 9th (no name yet but my daughter has named her pinkie pie after her favorite my little pony)

3. How would you describe your pregnancies? 
First pregnancy was easy. Had many years of infertility and miscarried twins and finally became pregnant on round 4 of IUI's. Only difficulty of pregnancy one was massive vericose vein on my groin which made wearing underwear extremely painful by 3rd trimester. Second pregnancy I suffered from nausea and still do. Diclegis has helped immensely. Also have vericose veins all over my legs and am very swollen this time around. 

This pregnancy is a miracle. OB still can't understand how I got pregnant as I have one fallopian tube scarred shut from body and the other one really scarred from last pregnancy. Even fertility clinic thought it would be impossible to get us pregnant once I turned 34. Well here I am 35 and God has bigger plans for our family apparently.
4. Describe yourself as a mom in 3-5 words. 
Loving, blessed, detail oriented

5. What type of mom do you hope your children think you were someday when they're old enough to tell you? 
One that taught them how to give and accept love, that we all make mistakes and should forgive others and ourselves, that being respectful isn't an option and that it's good to be silly sometimes
6. What things have you done as a mom that you're most proud of? 
Taught my daughter to say yes sir, yes ma'm etc, held myself together through daughter's illness/diagnosis of autoimmune disease (fever syndrome), and displaying more patience than I ever have in my life

7. What have been the most difficult parts to being a mom? 
I was a terrible newborn mom. Really bad post partum depression. I put my daughter in a mailbox all bundled up in a snowsuit in the middle of winter after she had been crying for four straight hours (acid reflux/colic) for several nights on end and I was alone with her bc my husband was working nights. Walked outside in the snow In my bathrobe and snow boots. Put her halfway in then started bawling n took her right back out and called my husband crying that I needed help. I got it together after that.. also dealing with the unknown of my daughters autoimmune. At first they thought it was leukemia and we were in and out of the hospital for months without answers. We are still waiting on an official diagnosis but I don't panic anymore when her fever spikes to 105.5.
8. What is your favorite baby/child product(s) that makes your mom job easier? 
We Loved the rock n play with our first. Such a Godsend for babies with reflux. Also am a little bit of a germophobe so hand and face wipes and paci wipes were my best friend.
9. What are 5 things you're thankful for as a mom?
Just having the opportunity to be a mom first and foremost. Getting to breastfeed for the first 3 months, having the ability to work full time and still be a mom and getting to experience everything through Kennedy's eyes. I love supporting her passions, which right now are baking and gymnastics 😊
10. What is a typical day like for you? 
Get up get showered and ready for work get my daughter dressed and ready for school give her a snack and get my lunch packed drop her off at daycare work 9 hours pick her up then head to gymnastics, awana at church, back to the ice rink to coach some more or on easier nights home to make dinner spend time with Kennedy do dishes laundry bath if needed and put her to bed. (Although my husband does most of her baths now bc it's hard for me to bend over🙈)

11. What 5 things would you like to do with your kids someday, if anything were possible and money no object? 
Take Kennedy to Disney world, make sure she got to put her feet in the sand once every year, have a larger house that actually had a playroom for her, take her to visit the places she's interested in.
12. What are your favorite CHRISTMAS activities to do with your kids? Traditions? Things you love to eat? How do you prepare for the holidays?
We have an advent calendar that my late mother made when my older brothers were little. We place a felt ornament on it every day until Christmas. My little baker LOVES baking cookies breads etc. this year we are starting the kindness elves and doing the 12 days of kindness with her. We talk about the reason for the season and will take her to see a live reinactment of the Christmas story called Return to Bethlehem. Broccoli casserole has been a family recipe for for generations so we make that for all holidays. We also do a Christmas Eve box with Christmas Jammie's hot chocolate popcorn or a cookie and a book or movie that we read or watch before bed on Christmas Eve. I try to do as much of my shopping well in advance and save extended family and last minute things for the month of December.
13. Tell us a time where you felt like you failed at parenting... but then realized you truly had not failed, things worked out fine. 

Every day or at least a few times a week. It's always fine. I've realized in a lot of cases there are 50 different right choices and a couple wrong ones and that sometimes admitting you made a mistake to your child isn't such a bad thing.
14. What makes you a strong mom? 
Prayer and help from others. 

I have learned to be both humble when others offer help or suggestions and assertive when things matter to my family. 

Especially in the medical field. I will listen to drs and take advice but never stop searching and pushing for things to be looked into. 

Truthfully, this group has celebrated, prayed, cried and cared about the posts I've made or comments I've had. I am so very thankful for everyone in this group and don't think I would be close to rocking or even surging this motherhood journey without mommy stories!! A special thanks to Alexandra Clinton Zadja for introducing me to this group!! 💕 you girl!

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