Hey all! The last time we checked in, I was 38 weeks pregnant and anxiously awaiting the arrival of our little bundle of joy. Even as I sit on my couch typing this, watching her sleep in her swing, it’s still surreal that that she’s been with us for a month now. So, here we are, popping in to let you all know that our baby girl arrived safe and healthy on August 24, 2020 at 5:17 PM! Her birth was beautiful and empowering for me, despite the fact that it didn’t look nearly like I thought it would. Ofelia Esther Gallo has been such a joy to get to know, love on, and snuggle the past month and I’m so thankful for the time off to spend with her and adjust to being a momma.
Isn’t it wonderful how God sends us a message that carries us throughout certain seasons – at just the right time, exactly when we need it?
One of my prayers going into motherhood, starting from the moment I found out I was pregnant, was that I’d learn just a little bit more about the Gospel through the experience – that the suffering and sacrifice would teach me just a little bit more about how Jesus loves me.
I’m only a month in, but I can say for sure that that’s already been done in more ways than one. Being a mom has brought a lot of things to light – how I get easily frustrated, how a lack of sleep turns me into another person I’m not the biggest fan of, how I really miss working and using my creativity in other ways, and how worry and anxiety can easily overtake me if I don’t check off all the things on my to-do list for that day. It has brought to light the innate brokenness inside of me that otherwise was easy to hide and overlook.
Being a mom really is as hard, physically and emotionally, as everyone talks about. For real, you can hit all the major emotions in one day – joy, sadness, anxiety, worry, and so much love for a little person that your heart can hardly handle it. It’s the strangest thing, yet as I’ve leaned into this season and kept my relationship with Jesus at the forefront, it’s been really one of the most impactful seasons of my entire life.
There are a lot of things that I could say about the past four weeks, and I’ve been trying to sum up my thoughts about what I want to share that won’t turn out to be a book rather than a blog post. So, I just decided that I would share some pictures of our girl and our family, plus a verse and idea that has been carrying me through every emotion, every up and down, and every day.
A day very early on in motherhood I came across this verse that has stuck with me. I journaled it, I made it the lock screen of my phone, I highlighted it over and over again in my Bible – it’s one of “those” verses that will be special to me for the rest of my life. I don’t want to forget that I read this verse in my devotional on a day where my heart needed it; it’s like God was leaping out of the pages on the most fitting of days. That’s what makes it so special… I felt so seen, known, adored, understood, and treasured by my Father because I knew that He saw exactly where I was and wanted to be sure that this Scripture was written on my heart for the rest of my days – especially the early days of raising and caring for a newborn.
“Isn’t it wonderful all the ways in which this distress has goaded you closer to God? You’re more alive, more concerned, more sensitive, more reverent, more human, more passionate, more responsible, and you’ve come out of this with purity of heart.”
– 2 Corinthians 7:11
You may not be in the same season as me, but I do know this – whatever challenges and distresses you are facing, they have the ability to direct you closer to God. They have the ability to make you more alive, more concerned, more sensitive, more reverent, more human, more passionate, more responsible. You’ll come out better. Deeper. Spirit-filled. Pure. And it’s because of Jesus that we have that hope. Even in the struggles and sorrows, His light breaks through and we’re never overtaken.
Yes, it is wonderful indeed.
Sammie graduated from Robert Morris University in 2017 with a background in biology and psychology and started working with Anglicans for Life (AFL) shortly after. In addition to her work with AFL, she spends time speaking to high schoolers about healthy relationships and sex education, as well as homeschooling for a family in her community.
Sammie married her best friend, Juan Gallo, in May 2019. During her free time, you can find her leading youth ministry with her husband at their church, where he serves as the youth pastor, and caring for their sweet baby girl who joined their family in August 2020.
Sammie spends her day-to-day making sure that every person hears and believes the words: “you were made for more.” You can follow Sammie on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter! She’d love to get to know you!