I live for Mother’s Day portraits. My one guilt-free day of the year to take pictures of my kids and no one is allowed to whine about it. This mother’s day I wanted to create portraits to capture how I’ve been feeling lately, which is strong. You see, I recently began my journey in the world of crossfit and have never felt as physically strong as a mom as I do right now. I’ve felt spiritually strong and continually blessed with God’s love to raise my kids, but I’ve felt as though my physical strength plateaued after having kids. I guess I always thought of myself as strong in my youth, I was involved in athletics since I was a kid, and joined the Army when I was 21, but after four kids I think a part of me felt as though my body was no longer capable of reaching a certain amount of strength. My husband started following crossfit many years ago and always encouraged me to pursue weightlifting, but that was never for me. I was a runner and I enjoyed yoga and occasional rock climbing. I hadn’t even touched a weight since college and as a mom I was more interested in keeping the baby weight off than bulking up. But I couldn’t have been more wrong about the benefits of crossfit. Since starting crossfit in September 2017 I’ve seen changes in my physical strength that I had written off a long time ago. I can do a pull up which is pretty cool. I don’t even remember being able to do pull ups in the Army. I can climb a rope, which is neat because my daughters climb them all the time in gymnastics. I’m learning to do hand stand push ups and hand stand walking, which is not something I thought I’d be doing at my age. Most importantly though, I can pick up my kids and swing them around whenever I want. They love to be picked up and I have the energy and strength to do it. I can carry my two year old on one arm and my five year old on the other when she gets sad that I don’t carry her anymore. Does she need to be picked up, no, but I can pick her up, and that feels good. I still have a long way to go to get to where I want to be in my journey, but even if I never get any further than I am today, I would be fine with that. Just as long as I can pick up my kids and toss them around, and listen to them giggle, it’s all good with me.