Hey Yall! Funny, since we are in Minnesota now, we are the only ones up here that say it!

Wait, what?

Yes, we moved to Minnesota. Crazy, right?! We decided we would follow God, and move our bundle up north! One day, I'll share our crazy, God-filled story, probably in a VLOG. Seeing God move in this whole process has been absolutely incredible.

How are we doing here? We are doing amazing, to be totally honest. I thought it would be hard moving away from everything I've ever known, but as sweet hubs reminded me, I've done it before. I had totally forgotten. I don't think I ever got homesick when I moved to Louisiana.

So, here I am. Brand new state. Brand new life. Kids are in new schools, and we are planted in a new church. Before we moved, God had already revealed to Brendan and I what his role would be when we got here, but I still wasn't sure what it was that I was supposed to be doing. I had ideas, and small little things I thought I could do, but still was not sure at all.

One thing you guys may not know about me, is that I was completely lost, for almost the entirety of my twenties. One day I woke up and I had 3 kids, and had no idea who I was. It seemed like I was just on a whirlwind track to making lots of babies, and being someone's wife and mom, and that wasn't enough for me (at the time). I wanted to BE somebody. I wanted to DO something.

I began searching in all the wrong places.. Made some terrible decisions. Longed for attention. I was so lonely inside. I felt like a robot. As I began to get older (and yes, had more babies) I started to realize that I really didn't know myself at ALL! And if I didn't know myself, how could I possibly know what I wanted from life.

Yes, part of it was getting married at 19, having a baby at 20, and never stopping to take a moment for myself. I was so caught up in making dinner and feeding babies, and paying bills that I never took time to breathe. One day, I broke down. I told Brendan that I needed help, but I had no idea where to start. but from some intense self discovery, of course aided by the worlds greatest therapists (seriously, therapists are angels in disguise)

I began to study the way I treated people. I thought about the things I said. I found things that were just for me, that made me happy, and I focused on myself for the first time in my life. I finally didn't care what everyone else thought of me, and I was FREEEEE!

I walked different, I talked different. I PRAYED different. I looked in the mirror different. I had started learning who I was, and I loved it. And as long as I knew it, it didn't matter if no one else understood me.

I began to listen to advice, and seek wise counsel. I read more, I learned more.. Life was different. I was able to be a better wife, because I no longer fought with insecurities. I was able to be a better mom, because I understood it was a privilege that not every gets, or values. I was a better friend, because I could empathize. I was a better person, because I wasn't so judgmental.

I'm 29 now. I still have SO much learning to do, but I also have so much to give now. I can spot insecurities in women a mile away. I can see when new mom (or any mom) is struggling, and I can relate!! (BOY, can I relate) I can look young women in the eyes and tell them that they are beautiful, and unique, and deserve the best of the best.

All that to say, I was worried about moving. I had such a good thing going in Texas. Awesome friends, amazing support system, and I don't even have words to describe my family! I was finally back in school, and I even had a job that didn't require me to leave my house! I started worrying about how I would fit in, or what my new role would be. And so I prayed, but God never answered.

Now, I know one thing about God that has proven to be true. Everything I have ever prayed for, has never been given to me. It has been more than I could ever think of praying for. Its always been more than I could have ever conceived!

Here I am now. I have a role, I have new family. I'm surrounded by genuine, caring people that love me, despite my flaws. I've gained 30 pounds, but I can look in the mirror and say "DAMN girl, you still got it!"

What point am I trying to make here? I don't know. I don't think I ever know.

1) Learn yourself, love yourself.

2) God hears your prayers. All you need to do is wait

3) GIRL, you are FIERCE! Don't ever let anyone tell you otherwise, because, baby, you are beautiful.

I am so grateful that God loves me. I am so grateful that everything I have ever been through have brought me to this very moment in my life. There's not one thing that hasn't prepared me for where I am RIGHT now. Is that not AMAZING?!

I have a special request this time. How can I pray for you? New mom, old mom, struggling with your identity? Please send me an email so I can pray for you. And if you aren't ready for that yet, just know you are not alone in your struggle. God loves you, and you should love you too!



-The Banks Mama