May 23, 2012

Two years ago.

If you had read my blog two years ago, you would be reading the story of a person who was experiencing the most pain she had ever experienced.

Hope, followed by loss.

Pregnancy, followed by miscarriage.  

I had never understood pain in this way before.  I had lost people I loved, but nothing quite as devastating and personal to me as this.  After longing for a baby for about a year I had started to lose hope that it was possible for us.  I thought there was something wrong with me.  Then, hope.  That positive pregnancy test.  And nearly three weeks later, loss.

{I don't even really know what to feel.  I am devastated, heartbroken, and just completely numb. 5.24.10}

This experience really defined me for a period of weeks.  It consumed me.  I locked myself in the house for at least a week before I could bring myself to go back to work.  My suffering was consuming me.

I know women who are there now.  Whose suffering is consuming them.  It's hard.  Very very hard.  When I was in that moment I knew that my suffering wasn't in vain.  That there had to be some reason for it.  Some growing God was doing in me, and something glorifying to him that would blossom as a result.  I knew it, but I sure didn't feel it.  I couldn't pray or talk to God at all for weeks.  I was just numb.

{God's desire is to bless us... but he gives and takes away and it is all for his glory.  I trust in that.  The day before I found out I was pregnant, I wrote in my journal relating to infertility:   
In church today, we talked about responding to suffering - in that we need to draw near to the kingdom of God in our suffering.  I know to myself, my suffering of not getting pregnant is at times all-consuming.  In comparison, people have made it through MUCH more.  And God has always been faithful.  So - in this season of suffering, I will daily draw near to God and seek him first - above all else - above a child.  Because I know he is good and because I choose trust.
I am going to continue to choose trust in this season of loss.  And I am going to continue to seek God first, because that is the ONLY way I know how to continue. 5.24.10}

So, here I am.  Two years later.  Clearly God has blessed us with child(ren) since.  There is an "after" to this story.  This part of my life no longer defines me.  I am not overwhelmed by suffering.  But this experience has absolutely changed me.  And two years later, I have now experienced God's goodness through it.

Because of this experience, I am a more compassionate person.  I'll never underestimate someone else's pain.  I won't make judgment on how someone handles their suffering.  Instead, I will join you.  I will cry with you.  I will talk with you about it.  Because I cannot tell you how meaningful it was to me when I was in that place.  I will not act as if your pain does not exist, just to avoid an awkward conversation or because I don't want to remind you of it.  I know I don't have to remind you.  It is all-consuming.

Thank you to the friends who cried with me in this season.  Those are the friends that have a special place in my heart that I will never ever forget.

Because of this experience, I believe in the power of sharing life with people.  Other women's stories who had gone through it and survived it kept me looking forward.  I am an open book.  I've never hesitated to share my life, but after experiencing the healing that happens in sharing in someones suffering, I am more quick to share my struggles and pain.  Raw, genuine, real.  These are things I greatly value.  I pray that I am always quick admit my weakness and my pain.  Because I know that sharing these things are bringing healing to someone else's spirit.

Also because of this experience, I trust in God's sovereignty more than before.  I trust that he is more powerful than science.  That he has a reason for pain and suffering.  And that he will be glorified.  I trust this not in a head-knowledge, because I read it and memorized it and know it-kind of way.  I trust it because God has written this truth on my heart and I believe it.  He has proven it in my life.

I don't know why I feel compelled to write about this today.  But I do.  A friend asked me recently how it feels to be surprised with a pregnancy after our year of trying and miscarriage... how devastating a time it was for me.  I still don't know how to answer that.  Partially because even at 35 weeks pregnant I still can hardly believe God has blessed us in this way again.  His goodness has been abundant.  But also because, I so so very clearly remember that pain.  I remember how it felt to hear of surprise pregnancies and just not wrapping my mind around how people can not try and get pregnant and people can try for years and not.  I remember the pain that came with that.  Not bitterness toward any one person, but just the questions.  The ache.  The not understanding.  {I still don't understand.}

Remembering...

Like I said, I have friends suffering in this place right now.  I just want to say that I'm lifting you up in prayer today.  Because that is doing the best I can do.  And I have faith that you will be on the other side of your story, looking back, and seeing how God was faithful.

 

May 9, 2012

Quarantine.

We are under quarantine over here.  No germs in, no germs out.

My poor little sickie got it bad this time.


Hand, foot, and mouth disease.  Basically a virus that makes you break out in blisters all over your hands, feet, and mouth.  Jude got lucky and also got it up to his knees, in his diaper area, and inside and outside of his mouth.  I haven't taken any pictures because he truly looks like a horribly diseased child.  

My poor punkin.  The only thing that makes it tolerable is Mama's cuddles (and regular doses of Ibuprofen).  And luckily, since he's extremely contagious and under quarantine (Mama and Dr's orders), we have plenty of time to snuggle up together.

I'm soaking up these days as a Mama of one - knowing I can give my boy my undivided attention.  These days are numbered (49 to go to be exact).  In many ways this transition is bittersweet.  When I first found out I was pregnant I immediately felt guilt.  Guilt that I would be somehow robbing Jude of his babyhood.  That I wouldn't give him the time he needs.  

But those are just lies.  I really do believe that.  So, while I am soaking up these days where I can focus fully on him and we can cuddle and watch Sesame Street and Barney (multiple times), I know that in 49 days he'll be getting one of the most amazing gifts of his life.  A brother.  That is bound to be one of the best relationships he'll have.  One that will last a lifetime.  

The thought is still so surreal to me.  I mean, I have experienced pregnancy before and it resulted in a baby.  For some reason it just hasn't sunk in that my heart will soon double in size and I'll have another son to care for.  But it's true - all these aches and pains are for very very good reason.

And if Jude loves his brother anywhere near as much as he loves his dog, we're in good hands. ;-)  Despite having the sickies, there's been plenty of this going on.


and this...


I'd never wish this disease on anyone, but I'm glad that he didn't get it 6-7 weeks from now when we'd surely have to keep him away from his little brother, and his Mama (who seems to have the only cure of snuggles).  I'm glad that he'll be well enough then to be present and active in our new family of four.

So, prayers for my little bubba!  That he'd heal quickly and that this disease wouldn't spread to the rest of the family. 

Thanks, friends. :-)


May 8, 2012

Baby #2 :: 32 weeks

Holy baby belly!!  32 weeks and going strong.  The belly has officially taken over.  

And as of today, May 8, we are an official 50 days away from meeting the newest little punkin that will be joining our family.

Consider this your eviction notice, baby boy. :-)


No, I did not stuff a basketball under my shirt, contrary to how it appears.  


And this photo has convinced me to stop attempting to fit into non-maternity clothes.  Just not working out.  

So here's the low down on baby #2:

Today's date: May 7, 2012

How far along: 32 weeks + 3 days

Total weight gain: 20-21 lbs.   

Size and growth of the baby: By now, your baby weighs 3.75 pounds (pick up a large jicama - {a what?}) and is about 16.7 inches long, taking up a lot of space in your uterus. You're gaining about a pound a week and roughly half of that goes right to your baby.

Sex: Still a baby brother!

Maternity clothes: See picture above.  I am now convinced I have a need for maternity clothes.

Sleep: Hips and pelvic bone ACHE.  Rolling over is painful.  But I'm still sleeping most of the night, thanks to Unisom from time to time.

Best moment(s) of the week:  We are working on Jude's big boy room!  So, that is exciting!  I can't wait to see it come together.

Movement: I'm not sure when (if?) this boy sleeps.  He is crazy active.  Sitting and watching my belly is way more entertaining than any TV show.

Food cravings/aversions:  I'm loving the sour stuff.  I bought a bunch of lemons a couple of weeks ago at the grocery store.  And this weekend got some sour patch kids. Mmmm.  

Morning sickness: Not feeling nauseous if that is the question.
 
Symptoms: I am about 99% sure I have pubic symphysis diastasis.  Basically your pubic bone loosening and separating due to the relaxin in your body.  It is PAINFUL.  I feel like I am about to split in half.  Walking hurts.  Rolling over in bed hurts.  Even sitting hurts.  The cure?  Stop being pregnant.  *sigh*  I plan to get a hip brace postpartum to help things go back where they should be, especially since I still felt hip pain after Jude was born.
 
Labor signs:
  Braxton hicks here and there, but not daily right now.

Belly button in or out:  
 I think it is as out as it can go.

What I miss:  Not being pregnant.  I told Jordan, even if I say I want more kids - MAKE ME WAIT at least 2 years before having the conversation!!!  My body needs a break from pregnancy.  Badly.

What I'm looking forward to: A doctors appointment tomorrow and then mother's day weekend!  


See how things were going when I was 32 weeks pregnant with Jude!


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May 1, 2012

Hello.

Hi!

It's me, Lindsy.  The person who writes this blog.  Remember me?  

So, I've fallen off the blogging wagon lately.  I'm cool with it if you are.  But really, there are a lot of things I have to catch up on.  For one, I have a 13 month old.  The difference between 12 and 13 months has been tremendous and SO MUCH FUN.  I hope to write my letter to Jude tonight.  

I've also missed two or three Friday Phone Dumps.  I'll be honest.  Not that into it.  I LOVE instagram and capturing little moments of my day with my iPhone {love!!}, but remembering to post them here?  Hassle.  So I put my instagram feed here on my blog on the side bar if you are dying to see my pics.  Feel free to follow me if you want.  But no more Friday Phone Dump.  Sorry.

It kind of goes back to why I write.  My blog mission statement, if you will.  There are many reasons I don't write.  I don't write for money (sorry - no giveaways or reviews here, unless it is something I passionately want to share), I don't write for traffic (hence the end of the Friday Phone Dump), and I don't write to show off, entertain, or act like I have it all together.  I write to be real.  And the real truth is, in the past few weeks, I just haven't felt the urge to say much.  So that's okay.

* * * * * 

 That being said, I have had some things on my heart today.  I've mentioned before how I have a Monday morning women's bible study that has been such a blessing to me.  I can't tell you how encouraging it is to start the week with a group of women who want to be real and raw with each other.  Who are in the same point in life - either pregnant or raising little ones.  And who love Jesus.  

We've been going through this study called Stuck, with the purpose of identifying the "stuck" areas of your life and becoming "unstuck".    


This week's study was on being overwhelmed.  I think anyone who has little ones at home can relate to that feeling.  I think anyone who is a human being can relate to that feeling!  

As I meditated on this topic the past few days, I've found that, for me, it really comes down to prioritizing and being intentional.  I know I've talked about that a lot.  Being intentional about how you are filling yourself, and your time.  I've grown a lot in this area in the past 6 months, but have so, so far to go.  

What I have found is if I am filling my time {and my mind} with kingdom things, I find more peace.  More shalom.  The more my mind is focused on worldly things, the more chaos I experience.  In my spirit and in my home.  It is so easy to dwell and obsess over worldly things.  To give in to laziness instead of being disciplined and intentional.  To make excuses.  

It's funny how I spend so much time worrying and obsessing over things that are out of my control, that overwhelm me, and only bring chaos to my life?  When will I learn?

And He just says, come. drink. I have life to offer you.

But that doesn't just happen in my life.  I don't naturally run to Jesus.  I naturally run to Google and research and obsess and read about what the world says about whatever it is that is nagging me.  

Hmmm.  Jesus or Google?

I don't really know where I am going with this, except to say that it is work for me to abide.  It is work to make sure I am filled with kingdom-focused things.  It is work to surrender my day to the Lord.  We are sinful beings, it doesn't come naturally.  

I'm just challenging myself to take on this work.  To do what I know is best, even when my mind is elsewhere.  To choose what is eternal over what is momentarily satisfying.  To be constant in prayer.  Not constant in googling.



Because I want shalom in my home.  Not chaos.  I pray that my home is a place where my husband finds peace and rest.  Where my kids experience unconditional love and affection.  Where I can serve my family with a joyful heart, instead of being overwhelmed with what the world tells me to be concerned about.



How's that for a Tuesday morning chat?
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