Confessions Of A Work At Home Wife And Mom (Part 1)

The alarm blares in my ears and my heart does that automatic panic it does every morning when I attempt to get up without waking the kids.

7 A.M. already? It felt like I slept for 15 minutes. My eyes burned from the three o’clock cries of my almost two year old who still doesn’t sleep through the night. And the urine soaked sheets that had to be changed at 5 in the morning because his older brother had an accident. By the time I found new sheets for the bed and put a towel over the wet-spot, the sun was creeping up. Mocking my silent plea for just three hours of uninterrupted sleep.

It was not meant to be.

My husband had left for work two hours before sunrise. If I wanted a shower, this was my only window of time. I drag my weary body towards the master bath, trying to keep the house as quiet and still as my babies needed it to complete their 8 hours of rest. At this age, they should be sleeping for 12 hours each night!

Ha! In order to achieve that, I would have to keep them in bed till noon. Gone were the days when my youngest would fall asleep faithfully at 8PM each night. Even when we go through their bedtime routines by 7PM, they sit wide-eyed until 11:00/11:30 on most nights. It takes 10,000 cups of juice, water, milk and dozens of snack bribes before they run out of requests and sleep will no longer be denied.  Neither one of them will sleep without touching me in some form or fashion.

What happened to my sweet babies who slept in their bassinet or crib from the first day they arrived from the hospital? Toddlerhood has morphed them into these two men-in-training with personalities bigger than their combined 50 lb frames.

I love them with a fierceness that keeps me kissing their cheeks and praying for their futures even when my brain reminds me that I have not had one minute to myself today.

I turn on the shower to the hottest setting before entering. The scalding heat seems to melt my weariness away for a few minutes and I sink into the deliciousness of the water on my skin. Even when the kids are asleep, my mom brain tells me not to linger too long or one will wake up in tears and wake his brother. They panic when I’m not in the room to meet the morning with them. As if the house has swallowed their mom whole.

Ten or fifteen minutes is all I allow myself. I moisturize and move to my closet to choose my uniform for the day. These days, I dress with purpose. A collection of new dresses from my mom and Mom-in-love means I have options. Every day my outfit most reflect my new role as a woman who works from home. My look must be comfortable but polished. Professional yet low-key. Most days I go from making breakfast with the kids to making a run to the courthouse for a client to meeting a new client at the office. Wardrobe changes would only slow me down.

I choose a black and white sweater dress which is mid length and appropriate for all work duties. A new favorite since the weather decided our free trial of spring was over and temperatures now hover in the 40s on most days. Again, the dress reminds me to be grateful for hubby’s mom who knows my size instinctively no matter how it fluctuates, and who also happens to have amazing taste in clothes. In another life, she would make a superb personal shopper or stylist.

No sooner did I slip the dress on, my youngest cries “mom-my?” Their cries seem to affect me differently than it does their dad. If they are not hurt or in distress, my husband can tune them out for hours at a time. I, on the other hand, have heart palpitations whenever one of them seems to cry in pain. Even when they are crying just because it’s Tuesday, the noise interrupts the effective functioning of all my major organs. It’s a biological response. I literally cannot think straight when their crying is prolonged and uniterrupted.

I scoop up my youngest pumpkin and plant a kiss on his soft, brown cheek. “Good morning boo boo,” my nickname for both kids since they were en utero.

“Tood monin, Mommy.”

How could you not love that cuteness? The next two hours are filled with bath time, picking out clothes, dental hygiene and all the like as both kids are wide awake now and ready for breakfast. We head downstairs towards the kitchen and I turn the TV to PBS Kids or Rootle as it has been renamed. Breakfast is simple, pancakes that only need one minute in the microwave for a stack of three and my (almost) world-famous scrambled eggs with red peppers, tomatoes and onions – a family favorite. As the kids sit down to breakfast, the requests for juice, milk, Daddy, chocolate chip cookies or a new toy from the store pile on, uninterrupted. I say yes almost automatically. Not exactly promising anything but mainly attempting to get a few minutes of silence so that the food will actually make its way into their tummies.

My kids are a joy except when they are hungry (which is every 45 minutes). I am not trying to deal with toddler attitudes today so for all of our sanity’s sake, breakfast is a most.

It briefly dawned on me that I had been awake for three hours and have yet to sit down. I shrug off the thought as my youngest declares he is done with pancakes and hunts down a book for me to read aloud. It’s the same “First Words” book we’ve read 981 times at this point but it’s clearly a crowd favorite. Before I could sit down to oblige, my phone rings. The number an unfamiliar one, I hesitate briefly then answer. Hopefully it’s not a telemarketer.

”Hello, my name is *insert generic Yoruba name*  I got this number from *insert unique Yoruba name of someone I do not know*. Please how can I see you today? It’s urgent. I have some matters with immigration that someone said you can help me with.”

I take a mental deep breathe or sigh, careful not to make my thoughts audible.

Why do Nigerians do this to me? Even if the matter could be explained in five minutes over the phone or via email, they insist on meeting in person. I’ve resigned myself to our culture and no longer complain. Immediately I do some mental calculations. If I’m desperate (I am), I can ask my mom to watch the kids for me while I make this meeting. We are dressed already so it would take me 30 minutes to get the kids unloaded at my moms house and another 30 say goodbye and drive to my office.

“If you’re free now, I can meet you in an hour or so? Do you want to meet at my office by 11:30pm?” I offer.

”Yes, that will be fine. Please send me the address.”

”Okay, I will text you now. Thank you, sir,” I reply, hoping I sound gracious and professional, while trying to keep the children’s background noise to a minimum.

I scoop up shoes, jackets and preferred car toys in their various sizes and push the kids towards the garage. I open the door for my oldest munchkin and encourage him to get in his chair “like a big boy!” He does so with agility and I round the back of the car to buckle his baby brother in his car seat before returning to secure my first born. My arms are burning from the combined weight of my son and a mountain of jackets and toys but we are locked and loaded. Ten minutes later, we pull into my parents drive way. The ranch styled house took a while to grow on me after living in two stories my whole life but now it’s home too. I use my key and nudge the kids inside while I peep into the master bedroom to find my mom.


”Hey Baby!” She calls from the bathroom.

”I have a meeting at the office, can you watch the children for me?”

”Sure, that’s no problem. Go ahead and go. I’m coming out now,” my mom emerges from the bathroom smelling like flowers and warmth. Her hair still in a silk bonnet even though she’s dressed for the day.

”Thank you, Mama. I should be back in like two hours or so,” I give a quick hug and kiss on the cheek and dash off.

“Bye baby. Listen to Grandma,” I directed to no one in particular as I hug both boys. Within minutes I am driving towards my office. I arrive 15 minutes later and shoot a quick text to my appointment.

“Please call when you are in the parking lot so i can meet you in the lobby.” The winding hallway of our business building winds along in four different directions when you enter and it’s easy to get lost. Six years after moving in here, I still don’t know our suite number so I can never give it out with any semblance of confidence unless I am looking at the door.

I take a few minutes to tidy up my desk, find a notepad and move to the front desk that belongs to my office mate and colleagues. Her desk is more impressive than mine hidden behind the bookshelf that separates our work spaces so I prefer to meet clients there when she’s not in.

I rack my brain, trying to place the name of the person who referred this new prospective client to my office.


I’m better with faces than names so it could very well be someone I’ve spoken to dozens of times and I’ve never bothered to ask their name.

“I’m here,” my text messages buzz, interrupting my reverie.

“On my way,” I reply without a thought.

When I walk to the lobby, the only unfamiliar face belongs to a man, early thirties, skinny and dark complexion. I smile a hello and walk towards him.

“Mr. *generic Yoruba name*? I ask with an uncertain smile.

“Yes! Nice to meet you,” he replies, beaming as he extends his hand.

We shake hands and walk towards my office. “I’m glad you were able to find the building okay,” I say by way of conversation.

“Oh yes. You are very close to my uncle’s place. He lives on this side on town,” he volunteers.

When we sit down at my (colleague’s) desk, Mr Generic Yoruba Name begins telling me  the cause of his visit. Someone had told him that their sister’s cousin’s niece’s best friend got their green card by filing as a ward of the state. Did I know how he could do the same and how much would it cost?*

I explain that I have never heard of such a thing and that he should give me time to investigate it.

Do I know if he could travel to Nigeria if he’s visiting visa is about to expire?*

We went over the stipulations of his visa and after twenty more minutes of questions, he was satisfied and ready to take his leave. He promises to follow up with me if anything changes and I also determine to look into the matters we discussed to see if there was any merit to the information he was given.

When he leaves, I check in with my office-mate who informs me that one of my traffic clients dropped off a past due payment. It’s in the office on my desk. I walk back over to my desk and notice the inconspicuous blank envelope under my printer.

The money is enough to pay a utility bill at home and put gas in my car for the week.

After making the deposit into my business operating account, I head back towards my parents’ house. I actually need to sit down and write today. And I need to eat. My hunger pangs remind me that I skipped breakfast this morning and haven’t stopped for lunch yet.

It’s okay.

When I get back to my parent’s house, I grab a banana and a piece of baked chicken from the oven. The kids are lost in the magic of Disney Junior so after their initial squeal of glee at my entrance, they go back to ignoring me, fixated on the screen. I sit down and savor my snack. I could go home now to write which may or may not happen because being back home with both kids in tow means going back to running back and forth fixing snacks, getting toys, changing diapers, assisting with potty breaks, breaking up fights, cleaning up messes and praying desperately for nap-time

At least if I stayed at my parent’s house for a couple of more hours, I had some help. After relaxing for 30 minutes, I bite the bull by the horn. It’s time to head home. I want to figure out dinner before my husband gets home at 6pm. I load up all our diaper bags and toys and my mom helps me buckle the boys into their seats, and we are off.

By the time we pulled up to our garage, both boys are asleep. I say a silent thank you to God and gingerly unload them. My oldest sleeps like the dead when he naps. I unload him first, laying him on the coach and carefully removing his coat and shoes before returning for his younger brother.

My youngest pumpkin stirs in protest as I move him out of his car seat. My heart thumps within me. Please don’t wake up. Please don’t wake up. Please don’t wake up. He quiets back down and I find my breathe again. I lay him on the couch with the care of a bomb-squad disengaging a homemade explosive. One wrong move and the whole house will explode into chaos and I can kiss writing (or peeing by myself) goodbye until their dad gets home.

By some miracle, we made it without either child waking up. I sit down to work on my novel. I started the story when my youngest was a newborn and abandoned it at various times because of the challenges of motherhood. But inspiration has been calling to me over the past weeks and it will not be denied today. As the story of Nora and her loved ones unfolds before my screen, I look down to discover that two hours have gone by. Time to get dinner ready.

I need something easy and delicious.

Fried whiting, baked sweet potatoes and mixed vegetables. I make quick work of the dinner preparation and when my husband walks in, I’m washing the last of the dishes.

“Hi, hunny!” I greet him with a grin and a hug before planting a kiss on his lips.

“Hey!” He replies with a twinkle in his eyes, his gaze roving over my body in appreciation.

He still makes me blush.

(Look out for Part 2)


*Conversations portrayed here are fictional renditions of the types of inquiries I get at my office. I would NEVER actually disclose the contents of my conversation with a client because client-confidentiality is a thing (a big thing) and so is the State Bar. I don’t want those problems.


Dreams of Destiny

When I was 26, I had a dream, desire and vision for a ministry geared towards pre-college-aged girls. I knew it was from the Lord because it resonated so deeply with the burden of my heart. So I hit the ground running and started in my church at the time. Daughters of Destiny, girls between the ages of 13 and 18 who would be mentored on a weekly basis via Bible study, prayer and open dialogue about the issues that affect their age-group. Everything the Lord gave me, I gave them. They were my babies as much as they were my little sisters in Christ. Their destinies mattered to me. Their future was my greatest concern. I wanted them to win where I had failed. I wanted them to reach adulthood without being shattered versions of their true selves. I wanted them to know Christ for real and to walk in wholeness. We prayed. We fasted. We fought. We made up. We persevered and we learned from one another. I made plenty of mistakes with these young ladies as a young woman myself who had no previous experience or training in ministry. I got my feelings hurt. I wanted to quit. I wore my heart on my sleeve and more than once, I allowed their teenage angst and anger to creep into my dealings with them. In a lot of ways, I was not the matured adult in the room because the ministry was my baby as much as the girls themselves and any attack on either felt personal and I took it as such. Ultimately, what started as a group of 13, 14 and 15 year olds grew with the girls and I watched my babies graduate high school, head off to college and the pursuit of their dreams. I cherish the honor of being part of each of their success in one small way or another. I remember each young lady in that group that God gave me with deep fondness and I still feel a fierce responsibility and protectiveness over them even as they are now in their early and mid twenties and flourishing quite well without my guidance. I miss them but there is no going back. That chapter in our lives is over. I now have the joy of praying for them as adult women who are making their own choices. I pray that the faith of their parents has become theirs on such a personal level that they cannot severe themselves from the cause of Christ. And I pray that they exceed me in all of their accomplishments because all of them are filled with talents beyond my wildest aspirations.

Mentoring and teaching these girls put me in touch with destiny, my own. They showed me how deep my love for the younger generation goes. They were my first training ground. Without rising and falling with them in tow, I would never have learned the importance of seasoning  biblical truth with a generous helping of love. Watching them blossom even today reinforces my passion for mentoring. Everyone needs a mentor, present company included.

That same glimpse of destiny keeps me restless when I see a young person in need. As we speak, I am itching to gather the young ones around me (age 11 to 16) like a mother hen to ask them the questions I wish someone would have asked me at that age. I want to be to them what I did not have in middle school and high school. But for everything there is a season, and I refuse to move prematurely. I have no plans of “starting a ministry” even one that addresses the demographic of young people who currently melt my heart. For now and for the rest of my days, I plan of blooming where I am planted. As the Lord directs my steps to meet young people who need compassion from an adult, who need guidance that is biblical yet friendly, I will respond.

I will tell them the truth but not before I assure them that they are loved. I will show them my scars to spare them my trauma. I will teach them to find God for themselves and I will walk with them even when they disappoint me. I will not judge them but I will not lie to them about the consequences of sin. I will not command them but I will guide them towards truth. I will not “lord” over them but I will live to demonstrate why even the foolish things of God are better than the wisdom of man.

This is my pledge as I continue to dream dreams of destiny.

Forgiving Me


I am used to forgiving myself for the mistakes I made before I came to Christ, knowing that God has given me a new beginning. For some reason, it is much harder for me to show myself grace for things I have done incorrectly after receiving Christ. I have access to the One who has all wisdom and knowledge and I am still making stupid mistakes? Ugh! (insert face palm)

Without a doubt, the thing that was missing from the first 26 years of my life was a sense of purpose. For as long as I could remember, my only job was to go to school and do well. Of course I had responsibilities as a young person in my parents home but the bulk of their expectation for me lied in my academic success. So I did that. After finding my feet in middle school following my move from one continent to the other, then again in high school after changing schools in the middle of the year, I excelled. I maintained high marks in school. I went to college and killed the game academically. I graduated with honors and met my goal of going to law school. Law school was a beast of a different nature but by God’s grace, I finished and I passed the bar on my first attempt. My purpose for those 23 years was to go to school and do well.

Done and done.

However, I did an extremely poor job of preparing myself for life after graduation; so without academic goals to meet, I found myself floundering for a sense of purpose at the age of twenty-four. My dream job never materialized and I was completely unprepared for not having opportunities fall into my lap. I did not know how to market myself or be aggressive in pursuing the salary I desired or deserved so I lagged behind, waiting on anyone who would drop the perfect opportunity in my lap because they liked me.

Encountering Christ in 2009 filled my life with purpose but I did not allow Him to direct my career. I had given up on myself career-wise so I poured myself into spiritual enterprises. I flourished spiritually even as my career shrank. I convinced myself that material success did not matter and buried my head in the sand, preferring to invest my time in my spiritual growth. My purpose was to expand the Kingdom of God and I was trying to convince myself that going to school for 19 years (I started when I was 4) was just fulfilling my duties; it had nothing to do with my calling in Christ.

It was a lie. I was avoiding addressing my shortcoming because it hurt my pride to think I could be failing in such a necessary area. The year 2009 should have been the year I took the bull by horns and addressed my fear of career-failure. It should have been the year I began the process of perfecting my craft in order to monetize my gifts. But I squandered a golden opportunity. Looking back almost nine years later, I still kick myself for “starting late.” So many of the holes that I had to dig myself out of in my 30’s would be non-issues had I not squandered the gift of time given to me all those years ago.

But I am glad God is a Redeemer. Even though I was allowing my gifts to waste away rather than letting them make room for me and bring me before great men, God did not allow me to rot to nothing. He has used various means over the past 10 years to keep me creating – this blog being the greatest of the avenues to keep my dreams alive during those desert years.

My dreams are finally big enough to scare me. These are not vain ambitions or delusions of grandeur but ideas and thoughts that have been part of my understanding of myself for as far back as I can remember. The things that I find myself doing with ease, that fill my life with joy and purpose also happen to be areas of need in the lives of those that I meet or those to whom I am already connected. I am still forgiving myself for not starting earlier. I regret the wasted years but I am encouraged that God who dwells in eternity can make time work in my favor.

If you are sitting on your dreams and waiting on the perfect time to start, allow me to be the push that you need from the Lord. There is no perfect time. Start today. Start now.

Do Not Feed The Trolls!

It is almost the last day of January and I have had an amazing 2018 so far…except for about two weeks ago. In the midst of basking in the glow of all the goals we conquered in 2017 and all the amazing things that lay ahead of us in 2018, I took some time to notice how tired, spent, and over-worked I felt and to pinpoint the cause of all my negative feelings.

For the past almost five years that we have been married, my husband has been the primary bread-winner of our family and I have been the primary caretaker of our children. I manage our home, household finances, appointments, meals, chores, you name it. Hubby’s schedule has gone through several changes in our years together but one thing has remained the same – he works 12-15 hour shifts daily, his weekends are unpredictable and his days start/ends hours before/after mine. I took on the challenge of being the wife and mother our home needed to function while giving my husband the opportunity to earn the income that was necessary for us to thrive. It worked. The system was not perfect but we re-calibrate and re-adjusted as often as life demands. The understanding remained the same – we are one team. Whatever we do as individuals was for our collective good. I do not make decisions that benefit me but causes harm to my husband or children and the same goes for them.

When I realized that for the past two years of my life, I have spent essentially 20 hours per day caring for our children while attempting to keep my career afloat – all without the presence or input of my husband (he was either at work or asleep before work), I bristled. Surely, this could not be a fair division of labor. I did not address my concerns with my husband but I noted how exhausted I am; I remembered the fact that our children still wake up in the middle of night crying for me; I thought about how many times I sacrificed sleep just so I could stay ahead of all the house work that had piled up. Going to bed at 2am only to be woken up between three and five in the morning by a crying toddler dealing with the pain of eczema or a wet diaper or just having a restless night. I thought about the fact that I was the default parent in 99.9% of our daily life and I got angry.  Not annoyed. Not concerned. I was spitting mad.

As I was online bristling from the unfairness of it all, I ran into some women who were sharing their own thoughts about how much of a crappy hand married women are dealt because nine times ten, we are the default parent; we never get to vacation on our own and we cannot plan anything outside our families; meanwhile husbands get to go through life blissfully oblivious to how much they are not carrying their weight around the house. Husbands can travel for work for weeks at a time and they will have an actual vacation. Wives with children cannot. These women either cannot go at all or they must develop a fail-safe system of check-ins, check-ups, house-help, babysitters and grandparents who can fully support their household in their absence. It was absolutely out of the question to expect their husbands to be able to handle the children as seamlessly as their wives do. If you as a wife and mom must travel for work, you have to keep it short and get back as soon as possible. More often than not, you spend every non-work hour calling home and checking to ensure all is well or worrying yourself about the thousands of little things your husband does not know when it comes to keeping the household running.

I believe the word for it these days is “mental load.” And without a doubt, wives carry more of it.

Surprisingly enough, finding other women who co-signed on my frustrations and the reality of my workload at home did not make me feel better. I did not feel understood or justified. In fact, it only made me more angry. So this was not just my husband; it was a collective of men worldwide who had bought into this system of patriarchy that would send us, the women they claimed to love and cherish, to an an early grave because of stress, worry and anxiety.

Why would they not help us?!

I realized that what I needed was not to feel understood by others. After all, they were not going to ease my load. The only person that needed to understand me was my husband; but what  I wanted was an actual solution.

I have not always felt this way. So what changed? I went back to the things I wrote in the very early days of our marriage and compared. A few months into marriage, I was still blissfully sharing about the joys of living life with my husband. Even the mundane things were an adventure because I was doing them with (and for) my best friend who loved me best in all the world. After pregnancy and parenthood, I still considered my husband the best friend and the best provider I could have asked for. So what changed?

Me. I changed. Although there is nothing wrong with accepting my limitations and realizing that I am overworked and in desperate need of help, my mindset about how to get what I needed had changed, and not for the better.

For the entirety of my marriage, I have been convinced that my husband is my partner and he absolutely has my best interests at heart. Overall, his demeanor towards me has not changed. His efforts at home are on par with what they have always been and he still demonstrates his affection and love for me and our family on an on-going basis. But over the past almost five years of pregnancy, life with a new born, life with a toddler, pregnancy, life with a newborn and toddler and now life with two toddlers, my needs have changed. I need more support at home than I have ever needed before. Not just physical support but emotional assurance that I am not messing this whole thing up.

Not having the physical support I need because of my husband’s unforgiving work schedule started making me question whether or not he had my best interest at heart.

(He gets up for work at 3 A.M. and he gets back around 6 P.M., eats dinner and goes to bed around 9pm to start the day all over again)

“If he loved me, he would help me.” The lie was so subtle I almost believed it.

That lie was what was feeding the growing resentment in my heart about the state of our household. When we were first married, I absolutely knew my husband would do anything for me even as much as I realized that he did not have the ability to fulfill all of my needs.

He is human, not God.

Five years of being constantly tired had me believing that my husband was purposefully withholding his help from me.

Why would he do that?

“Because he does not love or value you!” The lie had an answer for each question.

Going online and finding a plethora of other women who felt my frustrations did not help me because it actually fed the trolls (negative emotions) inside my head. My concerns were genuine but letting resentment poison my love for my husband was not the solution. By God’s grace, I found the help I needed. What I needed was to remember why I chose this man in the first place. My husband is the best choice for me because he is selfless; he is sacrificial in his love for others; he is hard-working, creative and ambitious; he is a leader and natural-born provider.

He is not a neat-freak; he rather sleep than socialize and he has an easy-going approach to life that complements my somewhat excitable personality. I did not marry him because I wanted someone who cleaned like me or cooked like me or parents in the exact same way I would. I married him because he is a man of integrity; he has demonstrated his trustworthiness even while we were friends and he is a man committed to living by the standards of Christ. I married him because I wanted him as my partner and everything he has shown me from all the years before our wedding proved that he would be a great man for me.

“My husband loves me unconditionally. If he is not helping me in the way that I need help, it is not because he does not want to. He may not be able to because he is exhausted as well or he may not know how best to help because I have not told him.”

That is the truth that has replaced the lie. The minute I stopped feeding the trolls (engaging in conversations or indulging in content that encouraged me to blame my husband rather than seek a mutual solution), the weight of resentment started falling off. The burdens started shifting off my shoulders.

A final note before I close this post. I have had at least three friends and sisters that I cherish who have walked through the heartbreak of divorce. Each time, it has been because their husbands left them feeling unloved, devalued and alone. Even if the men did not walk away physically, they checked out of their marriages emotionally, financially, and materially. Watching the women I love attempt to pick up the broken pieces of their lives from men who were suppose to love them has given me a new understanding of what it takes to make a marriage work. You can be the best spouse in the world but when you do not have a partner who is willing to work with you, you are headed for disaster.

I realized that I am blessed to be married to someone who is willing to work with me. He accepts my flaws and even when he does not allow me to get away with low-living (living below what I am capable of achieving), I know it is because he wants to see me walking in excellence. I am equally willing to work with him. In every way that matters, my husband is the man I need and want. He is present with me and our children. He demonstrates his love for us daily. He has never done anything to make me question his character. He provides very well for our family and he is just a really great man!

The next time I am frustrated about something in my home or marriage, I am committed to remembering who I married instead of letting my emotions lie to me. I will no longer be feeding the trolls.

You can hold me to it!

You Are More!

The most beautiful part of life in Christ is the daily, hour by hour growth that occurs when we are consciously committed to walking with the Lord. The topic I want address is actually already here in the form of a previous post. You can go read my post “For the Daughters of Eve” written in 2016 here:

It is password protected because it was only meant for women I trusted with an issue that was painful to discuss. The sting is gone so I’m free to share with any of you that’s interested (password Sisterhood).

When I wrote the previous post, I was dealing with a lingering sense of inadequacy.

It started when I graduated law school and was unable to find a job for six grueling months so necessity led me to open my own practice. It deepened when I was engaged to my husband and some of my pastors told me in no uncertain terms that a woman without an income was a liability to her man. It grew wings after my first born when my husband expressed that my time as a stay at home mom was not only hindering us financially but also showed a lack of care concerning his attempts to provide for our family. Each of these episodes shook me in different ways and I endured a tedious process to heal from their unintended consequences.  The last time I tackled this feeling of inadequacy was a few months after our second son was born. All around me women I knew were working and providing for their families or themselves. These same women whose opinions I valued and whose lives bore godly fruit were also telling me that any wife or mother who was successful at home but without her own business, enterprise or  income was incomplete. Their words added salt to an open wound. It seemed no matter how much I grew in my character or how much I contributed as a wife and mother in my home, if my income did not reach a certain amount, I was failing. I took the sentiment personally and honestly it broke me.

Today, my story has changed. When God delivered me from the fear of failure, He gave me a boldness and assurance that I did not have  before. That is where I want to draw from to encourage you, my readers.

A woman who agrees with her husband to stay at home to raise her family and forego a paycheck as part of her reasonable service should not be penalized with our disdain simply because it is a choice other women would never make. She’s doing what God has asked of her in her own home even if God does not require the exact same choice from me or you.

Most women I know would never openly condemn a stay at home mother for not working but still they say things like “I didn’t get all this education to stay home and raise some kids” (actual comment directed my way). Comments like these did much to damage my perception of my worth before I found my assurance in Christ. After my second son was born, my income was non-existence. I had missed months of work and declined taking on new clients as I grappled with the sickness of pregnancy. As a business owner, my maternity leave was at my discretion but woefully unpaid. So I did in fact acquire all of my education to “stay home and raise some kids,” at least for the first six months of each of their lives. As believers we pay much lip service to the dignity of mothers and wives, but in my own experience, we are often demeaned by the very body of believers with whom we belong. We are excused while pregnant or immediately after giving birth because of course we need some time for our bodies to heal and to bond with our newborns.

”When are you going back to work?”

Because raising children is not enough “work” by itself and nobody is going to pay you to raise your own children. And of course, you can’t possibly expect your husband to be the only one who earns an income. You can’t afford it.

Only millionaires are entitled to raise their own children as they see fit. The rest of us need to keep our nose to the grindstones and pay others to care for our children while we do the more important task of keeping food, shelter and clothing readily available.

I am being facetious.

A wife and mother who earns an income by working either within or outside her home, for herself or for another is doing a dignified service. She is supporting her husband’s responsibility to provide for his family. Her help is indispensable to her family. Most households could not survive without dual income so a wife’s paycheck is a physical representation of what her support means within her family.

Likewise, a woman who stays at home and does the dignified work of raising her family in the fear and knowledge of the Lord is doing a work that cannot be quantified. Her role in her family cannot be overemphasized. Without the unwavering support of a wife who sacrifices to be the primary caregiver of their children, many husbands could never earn the income they use to provide for their families. Without a wife who can oversee parent-teacher conferences, doctors appointments, family meals and household budgets, most men with children would not have the time to earn the income their families require.

But you are more than the income you earn or the measurable help you can provide at home. You are literally made in the image of God for His divine purposes. To quote a social meme “there’s no way you were put on this earth to just pay bills and die!” There’s immeasurably more to you than your roles at home, no matter how invaluable you are in those roles.

The reason those past quantification of my worth based on my income hurt so deeply was because I had lost my personal sense of purpose. I knew God would not have created me if He did not have a specific purpose in mind for my life. But in the years lost in self-doubt, I also lost my sense of passion, and thus my sense of direction. I was not the wife who couldn’t properly help her husband because her income was limited. And I was not the mother who could not provide the needs of her children if they ever depended on her. I am my husband’s strongest ally; his favor from God in human form because I am uniquely equipped to help him bring his God-given vision to pass. I am my children’s protector and first example of a godly woman. I am their window into the heart of God towards them as I love them with God-given grace.

I am more than my income. I am more than my roles at home. I am more than my title and I am more than the work of my hand. I am God’s beloved. And I choose to rest in that knowledge.

I invite you to do the same. You are more!




Marriage Does Not Save You!

Chatting with my brother Keaton (Twitter @doulos_kb) gave me a flash of inspiration. He had a question for our married friends.

Is it possible to gossip to your spouse if you don’t have the person’s business you’re telling permission? Marital intimacy can’t violate Biblical principles.

Keaton Brown (Tampa, FL)

I responded with a resounding “YES!” but I would like to explore the topic further with my readers. There have been times in my marriage when a sister has confided in me about her personal struggles or asked for prayer concerning a sensitive issue. More often than not, the issue at hand is one that only women endure and the answer does not need a man’s perspective. Later on, if my husband and I are driving in silence, my mind may wander to something we could discuss and the first thing that will likely come to mind is the last thing I was just told. Before I blurt out “hey babe, Pollyanna (lol, you like that fictitious name I picked) is having struggles with sexual thoughts,” I pause.

Is this information any of his business?

Would sharing this with my husband who I know will keep it in strict confidence still pose an embarrassment to the sister who confided in me?

Why do I feel the need to share this information in the first place?

If there is nothing to gain from sharing this information with my husband and I am doing it simply for the sake of making conversation, I need to hush. Even though I know my husband well enough and I am fully confident that he would never betray my confidence or that of this sister by blabbing about the topic to others, I am fairly certain that Pollyanna would be extremely uncomfortable with the idea of my husband (in whom she did not confide for good reason) being privileged to this sensitive information about her. I am not sharing this information because I want my husband to pray for her. Even if I know that he would do just that, there is nothing to be gained by violating another woman’s trust in this regard. I can join her in prayer without involving my husband; this protects her privacy while offering her community through her sister in Christ (me).

Continuing with this hypothetical, let’s say I have had issues with gossiping in the past, even as a single woman. Maybe prior to coming to Christ, I would sit on the phone for hours discussing the happenings of other peoples lives. The ideal would be that once I came to Christ, I repented of such sinful habits. But if after marriage, I am no longer gossiping with friends and start “sharing information” with my husband that has no bearing on our marriage or his responsibilities, then I need to re-examine my heart. The propensity for gossip is still there; the only thing that has changed is my audience. Sharing information that violates the confidences of others and is none of my husband’s business is gossip!

There may be other information that almost fits this category but it is not  necessarily gossip. For example, if someone confides in me about their financial struggles and I feel led to help, the first person I talk to is my husband. If he’s on-board, then we give a joint gift. The person may not have confided in my husband but when it comes to our money, that is very much my husband’s business. I can give the gift with my husband’s blessing without divulging all of the sensitive or potentially embarrassing details the other person relayed to me.

I like this discussion because it exposes some of the ways we try to sanitize our sinful proclivities by gathering them under the “I’m married so it’s okay” umbrella.

I know of friends who have confided in one person only to have them share the information with their spouse and it ends up becoming public knowledge. That is a gross violation of the Bible’s command to bear one another’s burden. This person is fulfilling the biblical command to “confess your sins one to another” and we dare not make that task more difficult for them by betraying their trust.

This post was intended as a short one so I will end my musings here but I want to hear from you, reader. Do you think it is always necessary to share what someone else has told you in confidence with your spouse? How do you preserve the principle of being one flesh while still maintaining the confidences of those who share their sensitive information with you, but not with your spouse?

The Journey of 2017

I have been struggling to share everything I really experienced in 2017 because putting it all on screen feels too much like inviting strangers into the most sacred aspects of my marriage. But after an eye-opening conversation with my sister and a second heart to heart with a cherished friend, I believe I know how to share the ins and outs of my year without betraying the confidence of those in my home.

I started 2017 hopeful. I was newly involved with a deliverance ministry that focuses on helping women grow in their relationship with the Lord ( I knew that if I allowed it, the ministry and the sisterhood I would build within it would grow me in uncomfortable but important ways. My children were two-and-a-half years old and eight months old, respectively and the work of mothering them was time consuming but I was finding my feet. I had reliable child care and a schedule that worked for our family.

I started feeling the nudge to do something tangible to invest in my marriage. Having two children so close in age meant that date-nights were long forgotten for months and months at a time. I did not want to wait until we were in crisis to seek the help I needed to be a more intentional wife towards my husband. With all of that in mind, I signed up for and was approved to participate in a marriage mentoring program called Good Thing 101. The program was eight month long and it forced me to do the work of prioritizing my marriage every week. It has done wonders for my prayer life, our intimacy life and my mindset towards my husband and I am still reaping the benefits till today. When 2017 began, I was afraid to dream in concrete terms. I had general ideas of what I would like to see during the year but actually stating goals intimidated me because I had been disappointed in the past.

One of the things I was afraid to put down on paper was concerning our finances. Because I had ignored my credit history for so long, I knew it would take years of work to undo the damage. This realization left me paralyzed when it came to believing God for any material things that would involved credit utilization. I am not one to believe that I can speak my car and house and millions into existence. In my own understanding, faith without works is dead. I can believe God to put food on my table but if I turn down jobs that could provide for my family and sit on my hands, I have condemned us to starvation. In like manner, I was not about to speak a new car or a new house into existence when I knew I had not done the work to make those things possible. To put it plainly, I was afraid to believe.

My own plan for home-ownership was that one day, we would have saved enough money to entice someone to sell us the house of our dreams even if we were not as credit worthy as other buyers. I knew the hefty down-payment I had in mind was years away so I took home-ownership off the table as a plausible short-term goal. My husband however, would not be deterred. He was tired of renting and he wanted his own home, with a yard for our children. As his partner in life, I got on board with the plan and believe it or not, by August we had secured financing for our home. By November we had our entire down-payment secured.

I was gobsmacked! God answered a prayer I had been afraid to pray at the beginning of the year and He did it within months.

In between securing our financing and saving the down-payment, I was hit with a huge business liability (five figures) that threatened everything we were working towards. I wanted to quit. I literally wanted to sell off all of my business assets, pay off the liability and close up shop. I was done. I was done with owning a business and I was equally done with even hoping to ever own a home. Who ever heard of trying to buy a home while dealing with this kind of financial stress? The money I had planned on setting aside would now be siphoned up by this new debt that came out of nowhere.

For weeks I wavered between anguish and anger. Nobody else I knew that went through the process of buying a home ever encountered this type of crap. They found their home, paid for it and moved in. Why did mine have to be a different story? I cried angry and bitter tears. I also cried in fear.  I did not want to be the reason my husband’s dreams were dashed. Through it all, I found the courage to pray. And when my courage failed me, I asked others to pray for us.

As we inched closer and closer to moving day, I was cautiously optimistic. I did not give myself permission to be excited because a part of me feared that our hopes would be ultimately disappointed. When we finally settled into our new home, my heart melted in thankfulness and joy. It was real. This was ours.

We spent the holidays in our new home and while we prepared for Christmas, I started thinking about what our new set of responsibilities would require of us. I crossed off any plans of any major purchases for at least another three years while we get accustomed to our new financial obligations and duties. It would be entirely out of the realm of possibility to believe God to give us any more than what He had already granted. We did not deserve it and we could not afford any more than this. Imagine my shock when I received a brand new car as an early Christmas gift. I left the house in my modest 2006 hatchback which had served me well for the two years we owned it; I had piled over 40,000 miles on it for personal and business errands. The car was over 100,000 in mileage but I was determined to ride it until the wheels fell off. I could not believe God for another vehicle until this one was paid off. I hated car payments all together. There was no way I was signing myself up for two of them at a time. God and my husband had other plans though. I left the house that day in a car that was 11 years old and returned to find one that was almost a decade newer. Shocked was an understatement.

At that point, I decided to stop limiting God. I had to repent. If God was gracious enough to provide the material things I needed even when I felt that I did not deserve them, He could certainly open any door that I would need to enter in order to prosper in the coming year. God has given me the gifts and talents I need to make wealth and secure my family’s future. Walking beneath my God-given capabilities would not serve me in this new year so I had to change my mindset. There was no need to walk in fear about our finances. We had the God-given knowledge to manage our wealth and credit, and now by God’s grace, we also had the means.

My affinity for living well below our means was a coping mechanism for my fear that we could lose everything at the drop of a hat. Money was a safe-guard and a god that beckoned my worship. If I had enough of it, I would not have to trust God’s provision. God Himself shattered that sinful thinking by challenging me to believe Him for my needs. He has been more than faithful. The God who made a way for me in 2008 when I had nothing, in 2013 when we got married, in 2014 when we had our firstborn and in 2017 when He brought us to our Rehobeth is worthy of my unwavering trust. His track-record is impeccable. He knows the end of 2018 from the beginning and He has prepared everything I and my family need to prosper, to thrive, and to live in His fullness. His grace is sufficient for us in this new year. He is the God Who has been our help in ages past. He is our hope for years to come.


What Makes A Wife

A diamond is forever

– De Beers

For months now I have been searching for the words to connect my thoughts and feelings about what marriage means to me personally and coming up short. In the recent discussions on social media about ring size and costs, I did not have a dog in that fight so I sat on the sidelines and watched the maylay; quietly musing about the ring I wear on my left hand. This ring is lot of things – a symbol of commitment, an accessory, a cherished momento. One thing it is not, however, is a status symbol. This ring is my husband’s first paycheck after graduating nursing school. It’s the moment he realized he wanted to build a life with me. It’s the symbol we exchanged in front of loved ones and in the presence of God as we vowed to make up from each fight we have about who spent too much money on nonessentials or who left the house without cleaning up. It’s his promise to be there in the room as I gave birth to our two boys and my pledge to make a dollar out of ten cents when the chips are down. My ring symbolizes so many things that are otherwise unquantifiable. One thing it can never represent is how much value I hold either in my marriage or because of marriage. Wearing a ring does not make me better than a woman without one. Having a smaller ring does not make me less than a wife with a large one. This ring did not make me a wife. It only symbolizes it.

As we journey towards our fifth year in marriage (wait, whaaa?) I can testify that this ring holds no transformative power. It didn’t make me a better woman or magically shaped me into Susie Homemaker. I still don’t know how to fold fitted sheets; my two toddlers are still not potty-trained and I can still burn a pot of food if I really put my mind to it. All this ring has done for me is allow me to realize that my husband’s well-being is now irrevocably tied to mine and my time to be selfish is over. My ring is a physical reminder that I am accountable to and for a life besides just my own. It’s a visual of the never-ending cycle of love, forgiveness and reconciliation that should be the pattern in our home. That is how I choose to measure our commitment to one another. No ring of any size or cost could do that.

Yours In Christ,


2018 Is The Best Year I Never Had

If you read that title wrong, you would think I was being presumptuous. I am only a few days into 2018 as of the time of this post but I have unshakable faith that the year holds great things for me and my loved ones. There is a certain level of confidence that comes with your decision making when you know that God is leading you. For the first time in a long time, I have peace that extends to every corner of my life, not just my home, marriage, friendships or finances but literally every aspect of my life. Years ago, my marriage was flourishing but I had turmoil in my friendships. Then my friendships were great but I felt forgotten and useless as my gifts laid dormant. Then my home life was amazing but finances were an issue. I would be winning at 90% of my life and the other 10% would be in shambles. I could not understand why.

And I will not claim to have all the answers now.

But a large part of what was keeping me miserable was my fear of failure. Anything that seemed like it would be difficult for me to overcome, I did not even attempt. I avoided risks and thus avoided the pay off that could have accompanied them.

In this new year I refuse to live below standard because of fear. My 2018 actually began sometime in October of 2017 because the risks I took in those last months of the year positioned me to reap a harvest in 2018. I am optimistic. I am hopeful and I am determined to do the work to see the results I desire. I know none of my plans mean anything without God’s direction but the wonderful thing about where I am right now is that God placed me here. This confidence is not in my abilities but in the God who gave them to me. This hope is not in my own strength but in the One who can do the impossible. God’s grace conquered my fear of failure and it is His grace that gives me this joyful anticipation concerning 2018. I know challenges will come. I know that things will not always go as I plan or hope but I refuse to sit in defeat and I am DONE with expecting the worst. I have been jokingly telling everyone that I am accepting no losses in 2018 but I really mean it. Anything that looks like a loss is no match for a God who can conquer death. That’s the greatest comeback in history!

God has proven Himself beyond faithful in my 30 something years of life. There is nothing coming my way in 2018 that He has not known and prepared me for. I am going confidently because I know Who goes before me. 2018 IS the best year I’ve NEVER had!

2017 Ten Years A Slave

The year was 2007. I graduated law school, passed the bar on my first try, spent 6 months looking for a job and finally, told myself that I was too old to dream. In 2007, my dream died and a fear was born. For ten years, I carried that fear like a cherished belonging. Fear spoke louder than the voice of reason so for ten years, I stayed. Rooted in one place like a miserable tree. Far from flourishing but unable to see another life beyond the one in front of me.

In 2017, the roots started to come up. By God’s grace, I started dreaming again. I put feet to my prayers and did the scary things. I put myself out there. I took the terror out of the word “no.” The worst they could do was say no; it would not kill me.

And in November 2017, the fear of failure died the gruesome death it earned.

I am free.

In 2017 I grew in my role as a wife. My love for my husband took on new roots and meaning. I invested in us. As a family, we did the work to secure an inheritance for our children and reaped the rewards. I stewarded my children’s lives well. I found my place in ministering to God’s people. I wrote. I prayed. I fasted. I dreamed. I applied. I interviewed. I believed and I saw victory. I saw breakthrough on the horizon.

I welcome 2018 with open arms because living free from the fear of failure means that the world has opened up to me in a new way.

In 2017, we did great exploits. In 2018, we conquer.

The End.