I’m finally ready to publicly identify myself (for those who didn’t already know) and start sharing my whole story with the world at large.

This post from my author/advocacy page outlines the very basics of my decades-long background of abuse. No triggers that I’m aware of, though future installments will likely have some.

I may maintain Gritty Momma still from time to time, but I intend to identify myself with my real name on the eponymous blog from here on out, and most of my new posts will probably show up there. Please bear with me as I figure out the best way to curate my public identity and organize my thoughts for sharing.

Blessings to all of you wonderful people I’ve met here. You’ve been nothing but very kind, insightful, and supportive, and especially during a time (little though you knew) where I had very much lost myself and was scrabbling hard in the dark to find her again.

I wish, so much, that I had it in me, then or now, to maintain close connections with all of you. You are so cool, and so soulful, and so inspiring. Part of my grappling internally has given rise to the final acceptance that I can’t. I wish, I wish I could, but fundamental human limitation prevents me. I’m not omnipotent or omnipresent, much as I might like to be, so I’ll have to grieve the connections lost and move on. But I want you to know how much they meant to me, and how much I enjoyed them, while they lasted.

Thank you.


Stephanie Gail Eagleson

Today marks two milestones:

1. 180 days logged for our first full year of homeschooling, and

2. The last day of classes for my first year back teaching online.

Many parents and teachers were thrown into these scenarios unexpectedly and unwillingly a couple months ago, but they have been our normal for quite a while already. And honestly, we love them.

We love Mondays, when my husband works from home (even long before COVID) so that I can have an hour in class in the middle of the day while he teaches the boys and plays with the baby.

We love singing silly phonics songs together, computing with marbles, writing letters to friends and family, reading books aloud to each other, planting seeds and watering the garden, playing baseball in the basement when it rains, using arithmetic at dinner to count bites of vegetables, studying the legends of St. Patrick…

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Sunshine Blogger Award Nominee

The Sunshine Blogger Award

*Quite* awhile back a very kind, wonderful blogger–Amy of Awakening Wildflower, in fact–nominated me for the Sunshine Blogger Award. Apparently, according to Colman Concierge, “The Sunshine Blogger Award is given to those who are creative, positive, and inspiring, while spreading sunshine to the blogging community.” I was very touched and eager to participate (thank you so much, Amy!!), but the past several months have been chock-full of other ideas, issues, and real-world challenges and changes (one example of which is that we’re in the process of selling our house and buying a new one!)… so, unfortunately, this fell by the wayside for awhile (…as did most blogging for me for the past few weeks… if you didn’t notice… aheh heh).

So, in an effort to put SOMETHING new and fun up here, let’s do this Sunshine Blogger thing!


The Rules:

  1. Thank the blogger(s) who nominated you in a blog post and make a link back to their blog.
  2. Answer the 11 questions sent to you by the person who nominated you.
  3. Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award, and then write them 11 new questions.
  4. List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or your blog


Amy’s 11 Questions:

  1. What is the very first thought you have when you open your eyes in the morning? Arrrggghhhh, nooooo, I’m afraid of the day. I’m afraid of the pain in the pit of my stomach that hits about 4 seconds after I’m conscious. I’m afraid of people needing me all day. I’m afraid of things going wrong. Clearly, I have anxiety issues… something I’m constantly working on. But truthfully, sadly, the moment I wake up is the absolute worst part of the day for me.
  2. If you find yourself in a dark mood, what do you do to brighten things up? The hardest part is motivating myself to try! But if I get past that, I usually take a long bathroom break (a privilege with toddlers… truly!), eat a piece of dark chocolate, drink some water, and pray incessantly in snatched half-phrases. Also, if I have a particularly blessed free minute or two, I stretch out and do some yoga. And if it’s a sunny day, I go sit in the sun for 5-10 minutes!!
  3. If you had to list your top three things that you’re grateful for, what would they be? My husband, my two children, and my cat.
  4. What is something you do when you’re all alone that no one knows about? Oftentimes this is crying… though I usually mention it to my husband if I’ve had some tears. Ummm, I honestly can’t think of anything else! And really, would it still qualify as such if I told you? Ha!**Now, however, I do want to take this moment to add a somber but important note: several years ago, my answer to this would have been porn/masturbation–if I *could* have possibly told you that, which I couldn’t have, of course–because I was addicted to it. And I know a lot of people will read this question and think, “Well gosh, wouldn’t the #1 answer to this be porn–but who would ever say that? I certainly couldn’t!” And I want to give whatever sense of opportunity to break free from this secret to anyone else I can by admitting this struggle was mine, too. There is hope to escape from it. It is possible. And you don’t have to be stuck in the endless cycle of shame and fear and helplessness. There is help for you–real, substantial help. If you have no one else to confide in, I am always available to talk about this and offer resources, compassion, encouragement, and hope. Shame-free. Please reach out. You won’t regret it.**
  5. What is your favorite memory from childhood? This is hard… I don’t have an overabundance of good memories from childhood. Probably the best, though, go back to all the time playing outside that I did with my siblings when I was 11. We had a “fort” in an old gnarled tree root stretched across a dried-out rivulet that ran down the hill out in the woods back behind our house. Afternoons spent out in those woods, or in our yard full of climbing trees and hiding spots, were magic.
  6. If you could come back to earth as an animal, what animal would that be, and why? A cat. Cats sleep all the time, jump and run with tremendous grace and ease, have beautifully plush fur coats, built-in defense systems… yeah, I love cats. 🙂
  7. What is your number one pet peeve? Perhaps that I have too many pet peeves. 😛 Right now, though, it’s bad breath and B.O.
  8. What is the main message you hope your blog conveys to its readers? That life is hard, but that there is hope and help and laughter for the hard days.
  9. If you had to live one week without technology, how would you do? Mentally, that is… Just fine! It’d be a hugely welcome relief to just let go of all that pressure I feel to be plugged in… although I suppose I might miss watching a show here or there. But a week really isn’t long to go without. 🙂
  10. What wish would you make upon a shooting star? That every member of my extended family finds the true love of Jesus Christ for them, accepts it down to the bottom of their souls, and finds life and health and true, deep, identity-defining joy at last.
  11. One of my favorite television shows to watch when I’m down in the dumps is Shaun the Sheep. What’s yours? I have heard SUCH good things about Shaun the Sheep and yet never managed to watch it! I really need to one of these days soon. 🙂 But for me, I love The Great British Baking Show and Parenthood.


My 11 Nominees:

  1. Vernon Miles Kerr
  2. Sheikah Plate
  3. Something to Stu Over
  4. Building the Love Shack
  5. More Enigma Than Dogma
  6. Jason Journals
  7. Peace From Panic
  8. The Things of Every Day
  9. Rachel’s blog spot
  10. InkBlots and IceBergs
  11. Purely Mama P


My 11 Questions:

  1. If you couldn’t drink coffee (or other caffeinated beverage of choice) in the morning, what else would you do to wake up?
  2. What is your dream job?
  3. Who is your go-to confidant when you just need to dump your irrationality off your chest?
  4. If you could live anywhere, where would it be?
  5. What would someone need to know about you in order for you to consider them a *good* friend?
  6. Spiders or snakes?
  7. Do you think the traditional 4-year college degree will still be worth anything in 30 years?
  8. What pushes you to keep blogging?
  9. Favorite snack food?
  10. What one global problem would you like to see the human race make significant progress on in your lifetime?
  11. How do you (or don’t you) conceive of God?


A brief update on my mom

Hello again,

I’m sorry that I don’t have much time to create “real” posts this week. As I mentioned in my last post, my mom went in for major surgery on Tuesday, so our family has been putting together what time we can to go visit her at the hospital (where she’ll be til at least Friday). I wanted to give you a brief update on how that went and, honestly, ask for prayer:

The surgery went very well, though it was more extensive than originally planned. They went in for one thing and ended up finding an additional thing in the process: a “borderline tumor.” The initial, “frozen” pathology report suggested that it isn’t cancerous, but we have to wait for the full pathology report to confirm that. In the meantime, my mom is adjusting to 90 staples in her stomach and all the ramifications of that.

…So I would just really appreciate prayer that we receive the pathology report back soon, and that the tumor is completely benign. And that my mom’s recovery goes really, really well (she actually got up and walked today, which I’m not sure she was quite ready to do, but she did! So hurrah!).

Thank you!