At Bellē Up, we understand and appreciate that being a mom is the hardest, yet least recognized, job ever. Yes, we said EVER! We created Mom of the Week (MOTW) as a way of recognizing moms who do the hardest job ever and then some. It is our honor to present you our Mom of the Week … KERRY LYNCH!
This was Kerry (left) when I first met her. A gorgeous, yet unassuming, mom-to-be(-turned-model) whose eyes draw you in and melt your heart. Kerry is the genuine, hometown, "Girl Next Door" who everyone loves to root for. This quality serves her well these days because an entire village began cheering for Kerry in December 2011 ... and we haven't stopped since! Last December, Kerry joined the ranks of an elite club of "Warrior Moms" when, soon after delivery, she and her husband learned that their beautiful daughter, Mary "Cate" was born with a rare condition known as Apert Syndrome. Kerry often lays her raw emotions bare in the family blog (MyMaryCate)--and her words are far superior to my own, so I encourage you to read them--but what consistently shines through is the overwhelming strength and power of this momma's love. Kerry did not choose this path, but she inspires those she encounters along the way (myself included) because she walks it with style, grace, love and an abundance of laughter. Kerry chooses to celebrate life. So, what are you waiting for? Join the party! #TeamMaryCate ~Jamenda, Owner of Bellē Up
Q&A with Kerry
Name: Kerry (Ryan) Lynch
Hometown: Evergreen Park
Current Town/Neighborhood: Beverly
Children: Mary Cate - 7 months
Tell us about your family: Chris and I have been together for 13 years, and were married on December 31, 2009. We welcomed our first child, Mary Catherine (Mary Cate) on December 8, 2011.
Career: I am a nurse liaison for Coram, a home infusion company. I have three hospitals that I cover (Advocate Christ, Northwestern Memorial and University of Chicago). I work with the doctors, case managers and social workers to get the patients setup for their infusion needs at the home.
Tell us about the cause and/or organization that is most important to you and why: My daughter, Mary Cate, has become the "cause" most important to me. On December 8, 2011 our lives changed forever. We welcomed our first child, Mary Cate, and despite a healthy pregnancy, physical abnormalities were apparent immediately. Within hours, Mary Cate was diagnosed with Apert Syndrome, a very rare condition that causes anomalies in the head, hands and feet. Apert Syndrome only occurs once in every 160,000-200,000 births (about 25 born per year) in the United States, and requires lifelong treatment and and extensive surgeries (20+).
It is completely unknown at this point, what this syndrome will mean for her physically and cognitively, so our cause is to give Mary Cate the best of care and the most full and happy life possible, while also raising awareness of this rare syndrome. For more information, please visit our website: www.mymarycate.org.
Hobbies: Spending time with friends and family, reading, blogging (newfound hobby).
Hidden Talents: Irish Dance (don't really know how "hidden" that is). I can touch my tongue to my nose!
Favorite family activities: just spending time together; lately playing, laughing and smiling on these beautiful summer evenings in our backyard.
My favorite part about pregnancy was watching/feeling my body grow a new life.
My least favorite part about pregnancy was painfully swollen "Shrek" feet the last few weeks.
When I was pregnant, I wish I had known ... I did know, but never listened to all of those who said to try to "rest up" before the baby arrives…I plowed through pregnancy working full time and we moved to our new home two months before baby arrived…all of a sudden baby day was here and I was EXHAUSTED!
I would tell a new mom the following three (3) things:
(a) CELEBRATE EVERYTHING (this is my new life motto).
(b) Enjoy the middle of the night snuggles those first few weeks/months, even though you are sleep deprived and want to just go back to bed, it flies soooo fast…I already miss those 3 a.m. feedings when the world was quiet and I could just cuddle, bond and kiss every piece of her.
(c) Keep your heart open and be thankful for any gift that you are chosen to receive
When I became a mom, I was surprised to learn that I could function on little to no sleep…coming from a girl who was nicknamed "gram" in college for being in bed by 9pm on weeknights!
When I hear the term “Work/Life Balance” I like to think I have mastered it pretty well. I really enjoy my job and my patients. I miss Mary Cate every minute that I am at work, but when I am home, I am 100% attuned to my little lady.
The most important thing(s) my mom taught me about parenthood was have fun and laugh…I vividly remember dance parties, baking, road trips with funny games…always laughing with my mom, dad and sisters!
My parenting style is best describes as ... I am still quite new to this only 7 months into being a first time mom, but I would like to say I just try to enjoy it all and roll with the punches!
The most incredible part of parenthood is everything: the smiles, laughs, toots, unconditional love, and most especially watching her personality develop!
The most difficult part of parenthood is watching your child in pain, physical and/or emotional. I know Mary Cate will have to endure a great amount of both of these over her lifetime, and I want nothing more than to trade places with her…It hurts me to think of her in any amount of pain.
The funniest part of parenthood is what we call "MC TV"…watching our video monitor after she goes to bed each night, seeing her rolling around, playing with her blankie, and stick her cute butt up in the air.
My greatest hope for my child is (sorry, I can't limit this to one) to know how much she is loved, how many lives she has touched, and for all to accept her as the sweet and beautiful girl she is.
My mom is my inspiration as a mom, because she loves me, is always there for me, and is my best friend (even after some VERY difficult teenage years…sorry mom.)
I try to set aside at least 30 minutes - 1 hour 4 times/week as “me time”. I spend this time going to the gym…or enjoying a glass of wine with a girlfriends.
Favorite book about pregnancy or child birth: The basic… "What to expect when you're expecting".
Favorite book about parenting: "Bloom" by Kelle Hampton.
Favorite children’s book: On the Night you were born by Nancy Tillman.
Favorite children’s movie: Beauty & the Beast.
Favorite clothing item when I was pregnant: My Ripe maternity jeans from Bellē Up.
Favorite item at Bellē Up or BelleUp.com: EVERYTHING.