When Your Child No Longer Loves You

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When your child starts calling your sister “Aunt Mom”, it’s time to go home.

The Tiny Human and I just spent three entire days at my sister’s house. Do you realize how many things can go wrong when you combine two toddler cousins for three days?

Day one–they locked themselves in the back bedroom.

This would be okay in a “normal” house. But my sister just bought a house that (and I’m not exaggerating) is one hundred years old. The thing is built like a fortress… the doors are eight-inch thick hardwood.

The release of the captives involved me luring them to the window so my sister could safely karate chop the door. 

Apparently this made my sister the hero: my daughter now calls her “Aunt Mom”. I was okay until she also started calling her uncle “Daddies”.

By day four I had to get out of there before the child handed me adoption papers and asked to change her last name.

Don’t get me wrong. I still love my sister. We’ll be back for a visit. When the Tiny Human’s sixteen and has some reasoning powers. 

Then again, I can only imagine what a sixteen-year-old could accomplish in that fortress of a back bedroom when her Aunt Mom and I are too old to bust down the door…

***

1381809_10151984334617556_155816862_nBekah Hamrick Martin is a national speaker and the author of The Bare Naked Truth: Dating, Waiting & God’s Purity Plan (Zondervan, 2013). Most of all, she’s Ethan’s wife and Zoey’s mom.

The Problem with Activism

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We live in an age when being an activist means hitting “send” on an e-mail. With the touch of a button, we can impact world change.

Have you seen the the story of Pastor Abedini in Iran? A U.S. citizen, held captive, recently (finally) received medical attention for his diabetes and wounds from prison beatings. Prison beatings he received–despite the fact that he’s a U.S. citizen and shouldn’t be imprisoned at all.

It’s tempting, in the overwhelmed world of social media, to tune out all the noise. It’s also tempting to use social media as our only form
of activism. But there’s a middle ground here, friends: using social media for good, and not forgetting that real activism–action with
more than just the touch of a button–is still necessary to global awareness and change.

So I challenge myself (and possibly you) today: how can we use social media to make a change for the better? I can start by signing this
petition to free one woman, Rayhena Jabbari, who is facing a death sentence for killing her rapist in self-defense (www.avaaz.org).

Will you join me? Activism shouldn’t just be touching a button, but on some days, it’s a pretty powerful tool that shouldn’t be overlooked.

***

The Lord of the RingletsBekah Hamrick Martin is a national speaker and the author of The Bare Naked Truth: Dating, Waiting & God’s Purity Plan (Zondervan, 2013). Most of all, she’s Ethan’s wife and Zoey’s mom.

I pushed you under {Monday’s Muse}

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Near my house is a college. In that college is a garden. In that garden is a rose… surrounded by roses.

I think of you every time I pass the garden with the rose.

I wish you didn’t live there.

I wish you didn’t live in that one song, in that one place.

I wish you didn’t live in the grasp of strangers at church.

I wish you didn’t live in that word, that one spoken, whispered in my ear again and again that one day.

Did you know that four-year-olds do not possess the brain development to understand what you did that day?

Of course you know. That’s why it was so easy for you. To take it and to walk away.

There are so many places I wish you didn’t live… in my church, in my shower, in my wedding day, in every lap I try to swim at the YMCA, telling myself I’m not suffocating, not being held under.

I spent a few years being held under, the sickness literally escaping my bones because my mind could not contain it.

I forgive you.

I want you to know you cannot stay.

You are not welcome in my garden, in my church, in my shower, in my wedding day, or in my marathon laps. With every stroke, I have pushed you under.

And with every walk through the garden, I have watched the rose… once mutilated… die to become resurrected.

She is in full bloom and your shadow has fled away.

***

Four Years...Bekah Hamrick Martin is a national speaker and the author of The Bare Naked Truth: Dating, Waiting & God’s Purity Plan (Zondervan, 2013). Most of all, she’s Ethan’s wife and Zoey’s mom.

How a psych-out could help your career {Writers’ Wednesday}

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I just witnessed my niece and nephew pull off a more secretive operation than the FBI has attempted in years.

The three-year-old was in a horrible mood… so the older two brushed their teeth, put on their pajamas, and crawled in their beds… only to get up three minutes later when she’d fallen asleep due to peer pressure.

At the risk of sounding crass, sometimes we too have to live by the old adage: “Fake it ‘til you make it.”

I’m not telling you to lie… {Continue reading here…}

Golden… the “s” word {Monday’s Muse}

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When I got my first hospital job, I went into work with only one rule: no one spoke to me before noon. The patients pretty much followed the rule since I was the one holding the needle.

Then I became a mom. Ten years after the lab tech gig, I’m still not a morning person. The only difference is, my patient no longer cares.Threatening the Tiny Human with a needle would probably be considered child abuse, but it didn’t keep her from mocking me while I sat in the phlebotomist’s chair recently:

“It’s gonna hurt! It’s gonna hurt!”

Thanks.

Have you seen those little alarm clocks that turn green when the toddler’s allowed to get out of bed? I’m going to get one of those,
only I’m going to get my engineer-husband to hook up a line from the coffee maker to the clock upstairs. When my third pot is empty, TH will know it’s safe… to whisper.

Maybe that wasn’t my most creative idea ever. Maybe there are easier ways to teach the TH to respect mommy’s need for silence.

But what can I say… it’s morning time and the clickety-clackety of these keys is giving me a migraine…

***

400018_10150579734232556_1911479569_nBekah Hamrick Martin is a Zondervan author and national speaker. She feels honored to still write for the newspaper that first believed in her… even though the editor has never received a column before noon.

Friday’s Flashback: The Lord of the Ringlets

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I’ll admit – it isn’t easy being married to a curly-haired boy. In the words of one redheaded girl, “Everybody hates people with naturally curly hair”.

If I was the redheaded girl, I would have rephrased it. I would have said, “Everybody hates the girl who’s married to the boy with the naturally curly hair”.

I don’t know what it is, but curly hair causes insanity in women. The moment they see ringlets they lose their minds.  I know this from experience.

I also know this from observation.

Every time I go out with my boy I have to flash my wedding band at women. I hope they’ll pick up on small social cues like the fact that my husband is making out with me.

Yesterday even those small social cues failed. It was my own fault. I let my guard down.

McDonald’s felt like a safe place. The woman was pushing a walker. I was pretty sure she was the type of lady I’d like to adopt as a great-grandmother.

Until she started hitting on my husband.

“You don’t like him any, do you?” she asked – as if she really wanted to know. (Who were the police going to believe in this cat fight? Something tells me they’d side with the woman with the walker.)

I had no choice but to let her continue. When she finally finished her string of come-ons, she patted me on the butt and walked away.

Yes, me. On the butt. Miss Personal-Space. Miss Don’t-Touch-Me-Unless-You’re-My-Husband. Or should I say Mrs. Married-To-The-Guy-You-Just-Hit-On?

Come to think of it, maybe I have something to be grateful for. She had not patted him on the butt.

Good thing for her, or I would have had use my superpowers to overcome the dark, dark evil. Walker or no walker – you don’t mess with the Lord of the Ringlets.

***

Friday features vintage post. This was written in 2010.

***

1381809_10151984334617556_155816862_nBekah Hamrick Martin is a national speaker and the author of The Bare Naked Truth: Dating, Waiting & God’s Purity Plan (Zondervan, 2013). Most of all, she’s Ethan’s wife and Zoey’s mom.

Writers’ Wednesday: Stop Overwhelming Your Readership

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This week I let the chores go. 

There. I said it. I sat on the couch and held my swollen-eyed two-year-old (in-between watching her dress the dog in my clothes).

Currently I have six dire situations calling to me, not the least of which is, dog hair so thick it could be mistaken for a mink coat.

I. Am. Overwhelmed.

Know the feeling?

That’s how your reader feels when you give her too much information in one sitting. For instance… {Continue reading here…}

Monday’s Muse: Devil Child

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It started about three days ago. You’d think I’d recognize the signs by now: the Tiny Human transforms into Devil Child (D.C.) while I cry huge tears, asking:

Is this the end of the child I knew? Did she learn this awful biting, hitting, screaming in the church nursery? Will my child… the one I pushed out of my body… ever quit dressing the dog in my underwear?

So I lay down the law. And I tell her this has to stop. And she wakes up in the middle of the night… with an upper respiratory infection.

When will I ever learn that Angel Child is only Devil Child when demon germs invade her body? The last three days have been spent on the couch with popsicles and apologies and snuggles and so much Olivia the Pig that I can recite it in my sleep.

If I had any sleep.

She’s finally snoozing again, but me… I feel some demon germs coursing through the sinuses in my forehead. And for the record, there’s only one thing that’s going to make me feel better:

Watching D.C. dress the dog in a lacy pink bra.

Here, puppy, puppy…

***

Molly_BekahBekah Hamrick Martin is an author and national speaker with Zondervan. Mostly, she’s a wife to Ethan and mom to one incredibly sweet (mostly) Tiny Human. She can be reached at writebrained@gmail.com, unless she’s watching the D.C. dig through her lingerie drawer.

Friday’s Flashback: Baby Girl

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Fridays on the blog are for “vintage” posts. This one is from 2011.

Dear Baby Girl,

They say babies sense a lot from the womb, so I’m going to go ahead and ‘fess up: Mommy said a naughty word the night she found out about you.

She didn’t mean to say that word.

It’s just that she was sure after two years and about two thousand dollars of stock in a company called Clear Blue (something we’ll talk about when you’re 25), Mommy thought she’d found her first defective piece of very expensive plastic.

And to be honest… as a hopeful woman, Mommy — err, I — wasn’t sure I could handle one more ache of sadness.

Within a couple of weeks there was no doubt, though: You were shooting off hormones faster than jet missiles, and I was hurling at the same pace. We bonded while watching reruns of Bachelorette and sitting half-naked under a ceiling fan in a 60 degree house.

The hot flashes and morning sickness began to fade and I began to worry. We’d already thought we’d lost you once, only to have the ultrasound flicker: your tiny heartbeat.

Even so I worried again…

My concerns ended a few days later when Pastor Kevin said something exciting and you went all Pentecostal during the Baptist service. It was then that I knew: You and I were going to get along just fine.

You haven’t stopped moving since.

We’ve done everything together. Swam marathon distances, come home, lain on the couch and cried from exhaustion.

That’s when we took up walking… to the fridge and back.

You’ve been to every single music lesson I’ve taught. And you’ve definitely shared your opinions (via your feet and my ribs) about
which students knew which notes to play when.

We’ve been to the beach, eaten too many doughnuts, slept late, stayed up all night. We’ve snuggled with daddy on the couch, watched too much TV, and killed a few houseplants.

Oh, and written a book. {Almost.}

I admit things are about to change.

In about 42 days you’ll move from dancing in my ribs to dancing through much less comfortable cavities in my body.

You’ll move from showing your opinions through your feet to shouting them in my ear.

You’ll move from late-night doughnuts to early-morning explosions of mustard-colored poop running down my hairline.

But I’m good with change. Because with that change comes a little girl I asked God for three years ago. With it comes a little girl who needs all the love her parents can give. With it comes the little girl I want to feel as treasured as her father makes me feel.

We can’t wait to meet you, Zoey Bree.

God has big plans for you. Go ahead. It’s okay to get excited about that.

Just do me one favor… don’t follow Mommy’s example and use any four-letter words to express your excitement.
****

Molly_BekahBekah Hamrick Martin is a national speaker and the author of The Bare Naked Truth: Dating, Waiting & God’s Purity Plan (Zondervan, 2013). Most of all, she’s Ethan’s wife and Zoey’s mom.