Experience pain or be pain free


I really wanted to write this post on why I chose to experience pain and have two all natural deliveries (with no epidural) and what really led to that decision.

I wanted to write a little back story on how I came up to that decision. Brielle was my first full term baby and I knew I would most likely get an epidural with her.  It was all because I literally didn’t want to be in ANY pain at all.  I mean,  I was 25 years old, and I knew that I couldn’t handle it (well, at least back then I thought I knew that) so I really never gave an all natural birth experience a second thought.

Brielle’s delivery that I documented here was so easy.  It was exactly the way I wanted it to be (besides the major scare at the end) but overall I was laughing and enjoying the entire experience.  What I didn’t like about having the epidural is the loss of control.  I mean, I really never gave it a second thought that I wouldn’t be able to use to restroom (thank goodness I didn’t have to pee after I got it), or that I wouldn’t be able to shower after the delivery immediately (because y’all.. it’s just gross), or the fact that I wouldn’t be able to walk around and move during the process to get things moving a little (or a lot) faster.

So when we found out we were pregnant with Rochelle and that she was going to be a terminally ill baby, I wanted without a doubt, an all natural birth experience.  Her story is here.  Her birth was scary, and amazing at the same time.  In just 2 1/2 hours my body did something that took HOURS with Brielle.  I pushed her out and it was exhilarating, and I was SO extremely proud of myself for doing something that I was SO terrified to do.

Then comes Malachi.  One major reason that I wanted to do another all natural, no epidural labor was because things went to crazy and chaotic with Rochelle’s birth, I wanted to do things differently.  I didn’t know the gender of Malachi throughout the entire pregnancy and I wanted it to be a surprise to everyone.   I also wanted the freedom to have my kids in the delivery room (up until birth) and to walk around on wireless monitors.  I didn’t know that I would need a labor ball as well, but it was so beneficial and I am so glad I asked for one!  I wanted to slow down the oxytocin (the medication used to induce labor)  this go around as well (per doctors approval) and take it step by step.  His birth story is here.

I think so much pressure is put on us women as we have to make a choice in the beginning and in the end as to what we are going to do during labor.  If we are ok with a c-section (in case emergency happens), or if we want an epidural.  Never do they offer a “pain free” delivery with modifications that fit your wants/desires.  I think it’s amazing at the hospital I delivered at (DeTar North in Victoria, Tx) to listen to what I wanted and what was best for our baby on getting him out safely.

I think every single way that a child is able to survive and enter this world is a miracle, and I just applaud each and every woman who has birthed a baby via c-section, getting an epidural or going the all natural method. Each mom is amazing and I want to give you a virtual hug!
**Also note that I am also speaking to all the moms whether you are a mother by adoption, or you had a surrogate deliver your precious child.. I think the world of you women as well!**

I would LOVE to know which birth plan you chose and why! I love sharing our amazing stories and think we can definitely build this community up with encouraging positive information.

With love,


©2018 Sheridan Johnson @Journey with the Johnsons. All Rights Reserved.




Surviving 3 kids, 3 and under


First off, let me be real with you… the first couple of weeks going from a family of 3, to a family of 5.. was just plain insane.  I finally made a plan on how to be successful raising 3 kids, and I was ready to implement it!

  • First and foremost, and probably the most important thing of all, is making a schedule (and sticking to it).  I decided to create a schedule in my mind when and how things were going to happen, and it relatively stayed the same each day except on school days (Tuesday and Thursdays) and weekends.  This helped me the most, for example, Brielle takes the longest to put to bed each night, so we save her for last and it works.
  • Have a lot of snacks. This goes without explaining, except for the fact that they have to be readily available and easy to clean up (because seriously who wants to clean up in between meals as well). My go to snacks were chips, crackers, blueberries, strawberries.
  • Pre-plan.  This means every night I would lay out the next day clothes (bows, socks, and underwear included for Brielle) and every afternoon I would lay out the night clothes.  This helped so much because when it was time to shower, read books, and get ready for bed, there was never any confusion.
  • Have a “safe” place, where the kids can play, without needing any of your help.  Toys that can allow independence, but is age appropriate and safe for them as well.  My favorite were little trucks and toys that made noise for little man (he was 16 months at the time) and little barbie play dolls, and puzzles for Brielle (she is 3).
  • Remembering that there is always another tomorrow, and what didn’t go right, can be re-started and done correctly the next day.  Kids are resilient and will only remember bits and pieces of the entire day.
  • Pray.  Pray whole and solid prayers.  Pray for specific reasons, and pray for a purpose.  When you cannot believe what is happening or how you got to where you’re at (having your entire house destroyed by little kids and you’re the only one left to clean it up at night), just pray.  That really got me through the good and bad days.  God continued to answer my prayers and bless us tenfold!

We are now back to being a family of 4 (little man left to be with his aunt, that is why I am using him in past tense).  It’s just me, my husband, Brielle, and our foster baby girl.

** Let me know if you have other ideas as well, I would love to know what worked for you!

©2016 Sheridan Johnson @Journey with the Johnsons. All Rights Reserved




Brielle’s Perspective Vol. 1


I recently found my old digital camera, from a few years ago, and gave it to Brielle to capture some photos of her life.  I wanted to make a little section in my blog called “brielle’s perspective” and post some of the super cute (and blurry) photos she takes from her point of view.

Rae’Sean and PJ
Me and Rhyleigh
Aunt Theresa, Annie, Rhyleigh
Brielle’s new friend (our foster child)

Hope y’all enjoy these! I know I sure do! I love that my 3 year old wants to be just like her mommy!♥

©2016 Sheridan Johnson @Journey with the Johnsons. All Rights Reserved.

Super Mom

Mother’s Day has come once again and I could not be more happy to be a mom/have a great mom!

I have accepted and embraced the fact that my children are where they should be and there is nothing I could/would want to change about that.  It took me a great deal of time to come to this point in my grief journey, and I know some days are definitely worse than others, but I know God’s right there with me through this healing process.

But this day isn’t about me… it’s about my mom.  Let me just tell you a little bit about her and why she is so amazing.  My mom has been through a tough times, and had to make some adult decisions early on in her life.  With getting married and divorced at such a young age, she was left with raising two kids on her own.  She never gave up.  She continued on to getting her Masters, all while working full-time and raising two children.  I am sure there were moments where she probably just wanted a “break” and throw in the towel.  Well, good thing she never did, because her desire and drive to love unconditionally and have a great work ethic passed on to my brother and I.

She fought for us in every situation (even when the daycare said that we did something wrong–she stuck up for us).  She gave us freedom to attend any camps during the summer that we were interested in and gave us the ability to learn how to make decisions early on in our childhood that would help mold us as adults.

Just when we thought she had done it all, she amazed us by graduating with her PhD from the University of Texas.  My brother and I have never had the educational drive like her to further our careers (well, at least not yet), but she instilled in us that you must get a good education if you want a good job.

When we both became parents for the first time, she was the person we wanted in the room (me) or on the phone (my brother).  Nana will forever be her name now, and I know that makes her so happy to be called that (and trust me, it’s usually one of the first words our kids learn to say).

She is super Mom because even though my and brother are both grown adults (27 &28), we will always know that our mom is just a phone call, text, or drive away if we ever needed her.

We love you forever mom,


(silhouette of the grandchildren)

Happy Mother’s Day!!♥