Photo courtesy of Tami Christensen

There are amazing, devoted, wonderful, deliberate mothers out there, and each week we’ll spotlight one of them here at The Power of Moms. Do you know a mom who deserves a little time in the spotlight? Email rachelle.price (at) powerofmoms.com. We can’t wait to meet her.

Introducing Tami Christensen

How many children do you have and what are their ages?

I have the best of both worlds: a beautiful little girl, Lainey, age 8 ½; and an adorable little boy, Landon, age 4.

What have been your favorite parts of motherhood?

I love mushy kisses, hugs and cuddling. I love falling more in love with my children every day.

What has surprised you about motherhood?

I have been surprised by how fast it goes. I can’t believe how fast my children are growing up. I had no idea it would go so fast and it makes me sad every time they grow into the next size up in clothing.  It has helped me to appreciate every phase the kids go through and will go through.

What have you learned from motherhood? Please share a specific story or incident that really taught you something.

I have learned that my children teach me lessons every day. Here is a little incident after coming home from the doctor’s when our son was officially diagnosed with autism. My husband and I had very heavy hearts that day. Later that night I was tucking Lainey in bed and she asked, “Why do we keep taking Landon to the doctors? I want to know.” I replied with, “Well he has autism, which is why he can’t talk.” And she quickly said to me, “But Mom, without Landon our family wouldn’t be perfect.” She taught me that our family, which I thought was broken, was perfect. What was imperfect about our family made us perfect. What a great lesson she taught me.

What coping strategies do you have for getting through hard times and hard days?

I remember one really bad day with Landon; we were so frustrated with each other. While I was running errands later that night I saw a quote: “Everyday holds the possibility of a miracle.” I had to start looking for the small miracles everyday with our son and start being grateful for what he was capable of doing and not stressing over what he couldn’t do.

Laughing more and definitely being grateful has helped us a lot. I also pray for patience and when it runs out I pray for more.

What would you say are the most important things a mom can do? What would you say are the most important things for a mom NOT to do?

Love and accept your children for who they are, not who you want them to be, and never give up on them. Accepting Landon for who he is has brought our family so much peace.

What are some unique and interesting aspects of your family or your approach to mothering?

After our son turned 18 months, we knew something was wrong but didn’t really want to believe it. He still wasn’t talking and started having horrible behaviors, not being able to transition from activities, still not sleeping through the night, the list could go on. We decided to go to Hawaii on a vacation. He cried and screamed the whole flight and while we were there, he wasn’t able to sleep more than a few hours every night. My husband, Karl, walked him up and down the beaches of Waikiki until two or three in the morning. It was a wake up call for Karl and I that we needed to get him help. After we got home we saw a neurologist who gave us an 80% chance that he had autism; sadly it confirmed our suspicion. We then started all his therapies. It was so hard to hear, even though in our hearts we already knew he had autism. At the same time, we were also glad that we would be able to get our son the help he needed.

Something that I feel is unique and interesting about our family is that I was a special education teacher for eight years. My husband is a special education teacher going on 13 years. My two younger sisters are preschool special education teachers who specialize in children with autism. Lainey was a peer model for special needs children for two years, which helped prepare her for a very special little brother; she has been such a blessing for him. Many years ago our lives were guided in this direction; now we know why. I know Landon was meant for our family. Landon is doing great; he is like a new little boy who loves to talk. We love seeing him happy and playing with his sister.

We are just your everyday family realizing miracles can happen everday if you look for them.

*** Click here to see more Spotlights. You can nominate moms to be spotlighted at The Power of Moms by emailing Rachelle Price, our Spotlight Manager at rachelle(dot)price(at)powerofmoms(dot)com.

 

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