First Letters to Addison

Those Crazy Sorokas // Dear Addison, A Letter from Your DadTo my daughter, Addison,

I’ll just start off by letting you know that i’m not as good a writer as your mom is, so don’t look at all my spelling and grammar errors!

I haven’t met you in person yet, but I have seen your tiny body at the doctors. I’ve heard your heartbeat and seen your little feet kick your mom’s stomach. It was one of the weirdest, yet special moments in my life. Hearing your heartbeat and watching it move on the screen for the first time was crazy for me. I didn’t know what to say or do. It was hard to think that your mom and I made that happen. I can’t wait until we meet in person. I cant wait to hold you and feel your little fingers and toes. I cant wait to kiss your forehead, and hold you in my arms, and take so many pictures with you, that all our friends and family are sick of me posting them.

Those Crazy Sorokas // Addison's Week 19 Ultrasound

I’ll be honest, when I found out you were a girl I got nervous. Im a guy, so I know how they think from a young age all throughout middle and high school. I have no idea how to handle a little girl.

But I cant wait to figure it out.

I can’t wait to share my interests with you, and take an interest in yours. I can’t wait to play video games, watch movies, make funny videos, play dress up, and even play with your hair..or have you play with mine. If you want, I will even paint your nails for you. As long as we can spend time together doing things you like.

Ill be the one teaching you to drive. Your mom doesn’t have the best history with cars. You may think im annoying in the car with you, but trust me..I am nothing compared to your mom 😉

When you get old enough to take an interest in boys and start dating, you will probably hate me. I will be interviewing every single boy you look at. And if I need the extra help, your mom will…be sitting on the couch watching your three uncles ask additional questions. Uncle Stephen, Adrien, and Anthony will be just as protective as I am when it comes to boys in your future.

Those Crazy Sorokas // Addison's Week 19 Ultrasound - Foot

I hope you think i’m an o.k dad. I’m going to try as hard as I can, but I know i’m going to make mistakes, and Im sure im going to be wrong sometimes. But I just want the best for you.

I hope you keep God first in your life. He has walked with me since I was in middle school, although I have stumbled and fallen at times, I have tried my best to keep Him my priority. He is a better father to you than I i’ll ever be.

Well, I am done with this horribly written letter now. Your mom is waiting outside for me so we can walk Riley and Bentley.

I love you my little rose. I’ll see you soon.

Love,
Your incredibly awesome dadThose Crazy Sorokas // A Letter From Your MomDear Addison,

As I’m writing this, you are kicking me in the belly button. This week we found out that we were having you. I mean, we knew we were having a baby but it was just a matter of were we having Grayson or Addison. Up until this point, we’ve been wondering if God was going to give us a little girl or a little boy and it’s been driving us crazy.

EPSON MFP image

February 17 was a truly amazing day for me and your dad. For the first time ever, I saw your face. Last time I saw you, you looked like a bean. You didn’t have a face, arms, or legs. All I could see was was basically a white blob on a black canvas. Don’t be offended but you looked a little funny when we saw you. You look like a skeleton because you only weigh about 10 ounces. There’s not much meat on your bones yet. But despite all that, you were truly beautiful. I saw your little feet and hands move. You yawned and it was adorable! You didn’t like the ultrasound technician very much. You wanted to stay rolled up in a little ball (which is how I sleep) and whenever the technician would press or shake my belly, you pushed back on her and tried to hide yourself. I can already tell that you’re stubborn just like Chris and I (I figured that would get passed down to you. Your daddy is particularly stubborn so there was no getting away from that).

Those Crazy Sorokas // Addison's Week 19 Ultrasound - Face

I can’t even describe how it felt when the technician pointed at your little bottom and showed us that you were a girl. I almost cried (I tried to keep it together because your dad always teases me about crying. I am pretty emotional lately). It was unreal and magical watching you move. I could finally, after months of waiting and wondering, put a name to a face. And hearing your heart beat…. No matter how many times I hear it, it’s always unreal.

You daddy and I weren’t the only people wondering about you. Friends and family texted us and wrote us on Facebook all morning asking about you. We posted a few days before your appointment a video of Riley & your daddy. Daddy held up two onesies, a pink and a blue one, and he asked Riley which one she wanted and she chose the pink one THREE times! When that went on facebook, everyone commented on if she was right. Even I wondered. Dogs are very intuitive, but could she really guess if a baby was a boy or girl? But let me tell you, Facebook went wild when we announced that you were going to be joining us in July. Everyone commented on how unbelievable it was that Riley was right. I told Chris that for out next baby, we should ask her again and see if she’ll be two for two.

Telling the family was the best part. Grandma cried and Grandpa told us that Grandma’s budget went up 50% because you’re a girl. Gigi screamed over the phone. And Auntie Faith snap chatted me all day because she was so excited. Our phones were flooded with messages and comments all about how excited people are to meet you. Everyone is so thrilled and can’t wait to spoil you rotten.

Those Crazy Sorokas // Addison's Week 19 Ultrasound

Especially me. I can’t wait to hold you, Addison. I’m so in love with you though I’ve never met you. I want to kiss you and see you laugh. I want to see what your personality is like. I know you’ll be your own unique person, but I wonder which traits you carry from daddy & I. I hope you have his energy and sense of humor and how he can make light of any situation. I hope that he’ll teach you how to change a tire and oil, and fix things around the house so that when you’re grown, you’ll be able to fend for yourself. I hope you’re organized like me so that you’ll stay organized for school and work and don’t fall behind. I hope your stress tolerance is high like mine and even when your life is crazy, you can still remain calm.

Most of all, if you only take one thing from us, I pray that you will wait for God’s special person. I pray that you won’t waste your time on people who will make you feel good for a season, and in the end, are not who God wants you to spend the rest of your life with. Wait for the best because life is so much sweeter that way. You don’t want anything but God’s best because you will end up hurt and full of regret.

I love you, Addison Rose. Keep growing and stay strong.

Love,
Mommy

Loving the Way God Loves

Last month at the Venue, Pastor Juan asked us what our goals were for 2015. Well, I’m not sure if I mentioned it here but one of my goals for 2015 is to be more hospitable. In January, I read a book that changed my life. It was one of those books that makes you want to buy it for everyone and their mother for Christmas. This particular book was “Bread & Wine” by Shauna Niequist (Amazon & GoodReads). From the first page, I fell in love with the book and the author. It was about hospitality but not in a preachy-preach way. It’s just a collection of essays and recipes. There’s not Bible verses scattered throughout the pages or devotionals at the end of each chapter. But you know how they say actions speak louder than words? This book is that phrase. I was touched just by the way this woman lives to be more hospitable. I didn’t need a verse or a preacher to tell me that’s how God wants us all to be.

Now I wouldn’t say I’m a cold-hearted person. Chris and I love to entertain and have people over. That wasn’t the area God wanted me to work on. He wanted me to work on be more loving and kind to those people in my life that I see every day, and just pass by. He wanted me to get know people on a deeper level and see the nitty gritty. He wanted me to see that there are people in my life that are less fortunate than me that are thirsty for His love.

I’ve been on missions trips and I’ve worked with people in communities that live in “the hood.” I’ve seen poverty in my home state and in foreign countries. But over the past few months (since December, to be be accurate), God has revealed to me a neighbor that He wants me to love. Since December I’ve been trying to set aside time to make cookies for her and her daughter. But every time I go to do it, I get busy and it gets pushed to the side. By continuously pushing off the simple act of baking cookies, I was neglecting my calling to love her.

But God finds a way. My neighbor actually reached out to me through my husband. She gave Chris a book to give to me in hopes that I would read it with her as a type of Bible study. So I did. I read a little bit and took notes. One day Chris texted me saying that our neighbor was having a really bad day and was wondering if I could give the book back. So I skipped the Venue that night and went over to her house with book in hand. I found out that night that she had just found out that she had cancer in her mouth and that her doctor told her she needed to get a will written out so that her daughter would go to a familiar family instead of being placed into foster care, if she died.

My neighbor who I kept putting off meeting and caring for was hurting badly. At one point, I was even sitting on the floor with her, holding her while she cried. I looked around her house and became very aware that she was not as fortunate as I. That night for dinner all she and her daughter had was a hamburger patty. I even saw something in her house that I had put out to the dumpster a few weeks prior because it was broken and I considered it ugly. She told me how she doesn’t work and her home and basic necessities are taken care of by the government but even sometimes that’s not enough. She told me how she constantly worries about having enough for her daughter and when she runs out of milk or bread, she just sits down and prays so that God will provide it for her. She even mentioned once she had to use shampoo to wash her clothes because she ran out of detergent and couldn’t afford more.

This is my neighbor. I am not on a missions trip or passing out outreach fliers in the inner city. This is my neighbor who has lived across the street from me for the past 2 years. Even though I am most likely moving in a few months, it’s become my personal mission to love this woman for as long as I’m living here.

The reality of loving someone the way God wants you to love them, is sometimes hard. To love someone how God loves, is to love beyond what you see, smell, and hear. It’s to love all of them, the pretty presentable parts and the dirty parts they try to hide. It’s to love when it’s inconvenient or when you don’t feel like it. It’s to love constantly and steadily, despite what’s going on in your life. It is dying to yourself and placing someone else’s needs and life above your own. This is God’s love.

Today is Valentine’s day and with the help of the Venue, we gave my neighbor and her daughter a huge care package of basic necessities, homemade cookies, and a card signed by everyone. It’s the day of love. We usually spend this day loving our spouses, boyfriend/girlfriend, and even ourselves. But it’s my challenge to you to love someone else. My challenge for you is to pray and ask God to show you someone He wants you to love. After that, my challenge is that you step out and show God’s love to someone who really needs it. Love your neighbor. Love your coworkers. Love the waitress that is working his/her butt off on one of the busiest nights of the year. Love a homeless person. Love a family member you haven’t said a word to in years.

Love the way that God loves.

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The Dreaded Mommy Guilt

I don’t even have a baby yet and I’m already overwhelmed with the dreaded mommy guilt. I’ve already spent a few nights curled up in a ball, crying my eyes out. I knew that a lot of moms experience guilt about a variety of reasons. But I honestly never thought that I would be a victim. Now you maybe wondering what I could possibly be having guilt about, especially since I don’t technically have a baby yet.

Going back to work.

Yes. That’s why my eyes are puffy and my nose is red and why I look like I’m sick. When I was younger, I never in my wildest dreams thought I would be a working mom. I always assumed that I would be a stay at home mom. To be completely honest, that was my dream life. But a few weeks ago Chris and I did a budget and reality hit me like a ton of bricks. I did my best to see how I could work the numbers so that I wouldn’t have to work. But it’s impossible. The bills are there and are not changing any time soon. They’re not going down and there’s nothing we can eliminate. That’s the cold, hard truth. Even taking maternity leave will be impossible. I wanted to do 8 weeks but if we can’t even make it through the recommended 6 weeks, there’s no way I can go even a day longer. I’m stuck and I hate it.

I feel like such a terrible mom. I feel like I’m giving up my baby. I feel as if I’m divorced and sharing my kid. I only will get it on weekends and nights (when it will be asleep, so it’s not like that counts). Odds are I’ll miss the milestones. Walking, laughing, smiling. What’s the point of even having a baby if you’re not there for it? Newborns need their mothers. And I will be dropping my baby off almost every day with someone who isn’t the mom.

But that person will get to see everything. They’ll be there for it because I never will be. What if the baby gets so familiar with the sitter that it doesn’t recognize me? What if it prefers her over me?

I tried to explain myself to Chris but he just rolled his eyes at me. “You just don’t want to work.” That’s not true at all. If that were the reason, I would have been crying my eyes out every night since I’ve been on my own. That’s not it at all. I honestly feel like I’m abandoning my child.

Now, let me be clear, I don’t by any means believe women who work and put their kids into daycare are abandoning their children. I know that they’re doing the best for their families. They can do it all. They can have a career, be successful, and be a mom. They provide for their families. I also know tons of kids who’s parents have both worked and they’ve always gone to daycare, and they turned out fine! They love their moms and dads! They don’t resent them or feel abandoned.

And I know all that, in my head. But when I think about myself and how it will be to drop mini Soroka off at daycare for the first time, it literally brings me to tears. How will I be able to do it? How do I make these thoughts and feeling go away?

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