Monday, September 24, 2018

In the trenches featuring Kay

Today I am featuring my Instagram friend Kay West.  We started following each other in the past few months and I have really come to enjoy her content and what light she puts into the world.  Her Instagram account is threetoquesandtiara, go follow her!

Kay and her husband Brad have been married for 20 years. They have two children Isaac and Eden, ages 14 and 15.  Her perspective on life and motherhood is inspiring.  They live in Utah but are Canadian by birth. She has been through so much, yet has such faith and optimism.

Tell me about your journey to motherhood.

I went through years of infertility.  It was painful and so difficult.  However I  know that the children you are meant to have in your family are supposed to be there and they come to you in various ways. I have two children who we adopted from birth.  We also had another little foster daughter who we had from birth until age 1 and then the adoption failed.  It was very difficult to lose her, however I know she is with the family she is supposed to be with.

My daughter has many special needs, some came from her biological moms choices when she was pregnant and some are just because Eden is who she is.  She has Fetal Alcohol syndrome, brain damage, autism, scoliosis and serious allergies.   She was severely bullied by some boys  in 7th grade to the point I had to pull her out and home school her for a couple of years.  She really only has one friend.  We are now trying to integrate her into some mainstream and special needs programs through the schools.

My son is so compassionate and kind, I'm sure a lot of that has to do with his sister.  He looks out for those who don't have friends and is such a nice kid.

What advice would you give to have kids and adults interact with those with special needs?

Sometimes adults make it worse.  Kids are naturally curious and kind, but adults tell them not to stare or walk away.  Let the kids be curious and ask questions in kind ways.  Don't label the kids, just let them become friends without telling them, "That child has autism or down syndrome etc". Just let them love them and be kind.

What advice would you give other moms?

Motherhood was never meant to be picture perfect.  It never goes as planned and that's okay.  It's okay not to have it all together.  Don't worry about perfection.  As long as your kids know they are loved at the end of the day, that's what matters.

How do you keep yourself healthy emotionally through these challenges?

I turn to Heavenly Father even when I don't want to.  My husband is so kind and patient with me and helped me see during a particularly difficult time that I was turning away from God, and if I turned to him it would help me so much.  He was right!

I put my phone away at 9:30 at night and I don't pick it up again until the morning after I've read scriptures and prayed.  I also put my phone away Saturday night and don't do any social media on Sundays.  It's a good time for me to focus on my family and worshipping God without distraction.

What brings your joy as a mom?

Watching them become independent and making good choices.  Watching them learn they are children of God and knowing who they are.

Our family has started a little business/campaign.  It's called Quietly being kind campaign.  My daughter is an artist and draws little creatures/animals.  We have made them into postcards and sell them and a portion of the proceeds goes towards a charity of our choice that benefits special needs kids.  We have an Instagram account and website called

How have you kept your marriage strong in the midst of challenges?

Much of it is my husband.  He is kind and sweet and patient. We have learned to work together and trust and support one another.  We don't ever speak ill of each other in front of anyone.  God is our partner in everything we do.

How has motherhood changed you?

I'm more patient for sure.  I understand how to apply the Atonement of Jesus Christ in my life.  He always makes up the difference of my shortcomings!

Thank you Kay, you are truly inspiring!  

1 comment:

Kay said...

Thank you so much! It was so fun tot alk to you! I love this "In the Trenches series". I am so excited to follow along and read about all these amazing women! Thank you for being such a force for good in the world Cheryl!