Saturday, December 31, 2011

The End.

That's how New Year's has always felt to me. Like the end. So many people look at it as a fresh start and the beginning of year. Maybe I'm more of a glass-half-empty kind of girl than I took myself to be?

I've been awake for a few hours now, just reflecting. 2011 was one of my biggest years yet and I'm sort of sad to see it come to a close. It was New Year's Eve last year that I "became pregnant" with Eden (if you know how they date pregnancies, you get it. If not, you don't need to.) The first 13 weeks of the year were spent getting ready for that little one who never came to live with us. The next 35 days were spent crying over that little one. The eight months after that were spent remembering her and getting to know and love her little brother. Here I sit, exactly one year after my pregnancy with Eden began...and less than six weeks away from meeting Nolan. Part of me has forgotten what it is like to not be pregnant.

Along with my two babies, 2011 brought me a deeper level of love and compassion. My relationship with Chris is better than it has ever been. We've come to appreciate each other for who we are as well as who we are not and I feel like we've fallen into a place of acceptance. We will always push each other to be better people, but we've both learned that who we are at our core is not going to change and we honestly love each other for our cores. I don't think I could really say that before this year.

2011 was a time to rebuild a lot of the chaos and crumble of 2010. My family is coming to the end of this year standing on a more solid ground than we have in a long time. There will always be challenges, but as a unit we've learned how to work through them and we are adjusting to life as it is now. This year was definitely one of healing. The walls that fell are rebuilt, and next year can be spent in growth.

In 2012, I want to continue to make more of an effort to connect with people. I've learned the power of sending someone a card in the mail or asking them out to lunch for no special reason at all. I know now that to really reach out and love someone is the most incredible feeling a person can have. I'm praying for a selfless where I continue to get my joy from doorbell ditching a loved one on my way home from work in the morning and leaving a pot of flowers and a hot coffee on their front porch. One where I would give anything and everything I own to be able to take the pain and frustration away from my friends and family because when they hurt, I literally hurt. One where in a few weeks, I'll look into the eyes of a human being that my husband and I created and know that I would die for him if I had to without giving it a second thought.

I'm ready to take it to a whole new level. Bring it on, 2012. 

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Mysterious Ways.

It was a little over a year ago that I wrote my first blog post. I had such high hopes for 2011 and was going to type it all out for the everyone to read. I was going to change the world. By today, I should have completed at least 365 selfless acts with each one described in beautiful detail on this page.

Well...this is post number 72. That's just a little shy of 365, huh? I started out strong with the Dashboard concert and my beauty reminder. I had every single intention of continuing down that road. Then, on January 30, 2011, I woke up to this:
Sorry for the blurry picture, I couldn't get my hands to stop shaking...

My whole world (including my blog) was turned upside-down in that instant. I began trusting God in a way that I didn't know was possible. He'd finally given me what I'd been praying for and waiting for the entire year of 2010. There was a baby growing inside of me that I loved more than anything and she consumed me. I touched on my pregnancy here, and didn't write again until April when I lost her.

I had no idea what God was doing at the time. All I knew was I was a broken human being and needed an outlet. This blog became just that. I didn't think anyone would find my heartbreak worth reading about, but I was wrong. I started getting responses to my posts from people I have never met. After my miscarriage, I gained regular readers in Malaysia, Canada, Germany, Russia, United Kingdom, Australia, Bahamas, Egypt, India, Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong, Belgium, Denmark, Kuwait, and all over the United States. People started reaching out to me and sending me messages to let me know how much my honesty was helping them heal from their own loss. I've had a couple of my posts (like this one and this one) reposted by other hurting parents on their personal blogs because I was able to put into words how they were feeling but couldn't make their friends and family understand.

I know that those words were not fully mine. God took my intention for this blog and used my baby girl to change the world in a completely different way than I thought I wanted to. He gave me the strength and the compassion for others to open myself up and let my readers know that their feelings are not strange or invalid. My goal was surpassed and I was able to reach people on a much larger scale than I would have with my diary of random acts of kindness.

His plan is so much more massive than we can comprehend. I do not for a second believe that the only reason Eden was taken from us was to help people through this blog. There is so much more to it than that. I do, however, believe that my reason for starting this blog a year ago was to document what I went through when I lost her. I had no idea how God was going to twist and turn it at the time, but I'm so thankful for how it has turned out. I do not believe I failed because my original goal was not met. I know that people were blessed through this blog over the last year and that was exactly what I wanted to happen. His ways are so much better than my own.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


Here is my new and improved list. What a difference a few days can make! I obviously still have so much to do but I'm starting to feel like it is possible for us to get it all done before Nolan makes his debut.
  • Chris and I need to get our TDAP vaccines, like, yesterday. I also need to talk with all of the grandparents and aunts and uncles who will be around Nolan and let them know it is recommended that they get it as well. I talked to some family and just need to talk to a few more people. We're hoping to get our shots tomorrow.
  • I need to get in contact with my short term disability company to make sure I have all of that in order and figure out exactly how much our check will be when he is born.
  • I still have so much cleaning and organizing to do. Obviously I have to set up his nursery, but I have a whole load of furniture that needs to be cleared out of my house before that can even start to happen. Furniture is moved and I've made some major progress on cleaning this week!
  • I haven't even looked at diaper bags. Bought one! We just have to pick it up tomorrow.
  • I can't decide on a mattress for his crib. It will be delivered on Thursday!
  • What? I need bedding to go in his crib too? Another decision I'm struggling with. I just put some sheets on my registry.
  • Maybe I should start with actually putting his crib together...or taking it out of the box... Done and done!
  • I think my insurance covers pumps but I haven't called them to check on what brand or anything else for that matter.
  • I haven't even started Christmas shopping. I should be done tomorrow!
  • Christmas cards. Not this year. I just can't. We didn't decorate either.
  • I mentioned to Chris that I wanted to schedule a tour of the hospital I'll be delivering in. This may or may not get crossed of the list soon as well.
  • We have a few pediatricians that we want to interview. When? Who knows. Then we actually have to pick one.
  • I just looked up a list of things to pack for the hospital...Heaven help me.
  • I haven't bought a new bra in over a year. The thought of even looking at nursing bras makes me want to vomit but I know I need to...eventually.
  • I need to finish Nolan's dresser and mirror that I'm refinishing for his room. I'm not crossing this off, but at least it is now sitting in the nursery instead of my mom's driveway.
  • Lots and lots of baby (and mommy and daddy) laundry.
  • I need to get my FMLA paperwork to Kathy so she can get it done and I can get it turned in and crossed off this list. I have an appointment next Wednesday and she told me to bring it in then.
  • We need to figure out what in the world is going on with Chris' job and his FMLA (like how he can even get his hands on the paperwork he needs?!) Hopefully he'll have his paperwork by Wednesday so we can get it in together.
  • I need to get the side panel on my car fixed so it isn't ripped up more and more each time we put a car seat in the backseat. My whole car needs to be cleaned really well when that is done.
  • I need to call my landlord and let him know that we will have another person living in our house in 8 weeks.
  • Somewhere in the middle of all of that I'm supposed to eat healthy and balanced meals, pamper myself, enjoy these last couple of months of "freedom" with Chris, exercise, prop my legs up, and get lots and lots of rest (can you hear the sarcasm?) Right. I'm trying!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Under The Stress.

This picture is 5 weeks old but it is by far my favorite one of him. I could stare at his face all day long...

I can't believe how much I love Nolan already. I talk to him and think about him all the time. There are times when I lay in bed and can't sleep so I will wake him up just so I can play with him. Feeling him move in my stomach is by far the most incredible thing I've ever experienced. The thought of him hurting or anything happening to him brings instant tears to my eyes. I can't wait to actually meet him...but the thought of no longer having him with me 24/7 in just a few weeks makes me want to cry.

I just read through my last post and I felt like I needed to get this out there too. Every single thing I'm doing is beyond worth it. Nolan and his daddy mean everything to me and all of the chaos is beautiful because in the end I get the two of them.


I obviously haven't written in a long time. Not that I think I have tons of readers waiting on the edge of their seat for my next post, but it is nice for me to be able to go back and read what I've written. I feel like I've neglected documenting 98.9% of my pregnancy and here I am, 56 days away from Nolan's due date, and don't have much of anything in this blog to show for it. I still have a couple of posts sitting in my draft box that I promise will be up eventually (again, like you all are waiting on the edge of your seats...)

Anyways, did I just say 56 days?!

Oh. My. Gosh.

Would anyone care to explain where the last 32 weeks have gone? December will be over before I know it. I figured out last night as I was writing out our middle of the month bills that I will only do that one more time before Nolan is here. I'm freaking out. It seems like every spare second of my days off are mapped out and packed full of projects around the house and things I need to get done before he is born and I'm still not anywhere near where I need to be. I'm feeling the crunch in a very bad way.

What have I accomplished? Maybe I'll feel better if I type it out...
  • We bought his crib (although it is still in a box in our living room.)
  • Downstairs is under control (but nowhere near as clean and sanitary as I'd like.)
  • Our upstairs bathroom is decent (again, nowhere near where I'd like it to be.)
  • My FMLA and disability paperwork is filled out and ready to be dropped off at my doctor's office for my midwife to complete her part (whenever I remember to do that.)
  • We have his stroller, car seat, and swing ready to go (we just need want to get another base for our second car.)
  • His coming home outfit is ready and sitting on his car seat.
  • We have one coat of paint on his dresser...movin' right along with that project...
  • I bought the lanterns for his nursery (but they're still in their wrappers.)
  • He has a few blankets, a bath towel, some small toys, and a few outfits thanks to excited grandparents.
  • My registry is almost complete. Hey, it is close is going on this list.
Is that really all I have done? Okay...that made me feel a little worse. I've been working so hard. Where has all of my hard work gone?

Now for what I still have to get done. This is going to be scary...
  • Chris and I need to get our TDAP vaccines, like, yesterday. I also need to talk with all of the grandparents and aunts and uncles who will be around Nolan and let them know it is recommended that they get it as well.
  • I need to get in contact with my short term disability company to make sure I have all of that in order and figure out exactly how much our check will be when he is born.
  • I still have so much cleaning and organizing to do. Obviously I have to set up his nursery, but I have a whole load of furniture that needs to be cleared out of my house before that can even start to happen.
  • I haven't even looked at diaper bags.
  • I can't decide on a mattress for his crib.
  • What? I need bedding to go in his crib too? Another decision I'm struggling with.
  • Maybe I should start with actually putting his crib together...or taking it out of the box...
  • I think my insurance covers pumps but I haven't called them to check on what brand or anything else for that matter.
  • I haven't even started Christmas shopping.
  • Christmas cards. Not this year. I just can't. We didn't decorate either.
  • I mentioned to Chris that I wanted to schedule a tour of the hospital I'll be delivering in. This may or may not get crossed of the list soon as well.
  • We have a few pediatricians that we want to interview. When? Who knows. Then we actually have to pick one.
  • I just looked up a list of things to pack for the hospital...Heaven help me.
  • I haven't bought a new bra in over a year. The thought of even looking at nursing bras makes me want to vomit but I know I need to...eventually.
  • I need to finish Nolan's dresser and mirror that I'm refinishing for his room.
  • Lots and lots of baby (and mommy and daddy) laundry.
  • I need to get my FMLA paperwork to Kathy so she can get it done and I can get it turned in and crossed off this list.
  • We need to figure out what in the world is going on with Chris' job and his FMLA (like how he can even get his hands on the paperwork he needs?!)
  • I need to get the side panel on my car fixed so it isn't ripped up more and more each time we put a car seat in the backseat. My whole car needs to be cleaned really well when that is done.
  • I need to call my landlord and let him know that we will have another person living in our house in 8 weeks.
  • Somewhere in the middle of all of that I'm supposed to eat healthy and balanced meals, pamper myself, enjoy these last couple of months of "freedom" with Chris, exercise, prop my legs up, and get lots and lots of rest (can you hear the sarcasm?) Right.
I'm sure I could come up with more but I'm getting seriously depressed. Maybe anxious is a better word...stressed out...I don't know. I know that Nolan will be beyond worth it and when he is in my arms, none of those things will matter at that moment. But they do matter now and they will when he gets home. These are things I need to have done so he can be born into a comfortable and stable environment and they will be done before he is born if it kills me. I just need about 80 more hours in a week.

So...long story short...sorry I haven't been blogging much.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A Little Bubble Tape...The Rest Is History.

*This is a REALLY long post! It is more for my own personal record than anything else. I won't be offended if you skip this one...*

Summer of 2006...the quote is what how he described me to his parents when we first started dating.

I just found the sweetest post that my friend Yvonne's husband wrote detailing the entire beginning of their relationship from the day he met her until he proposed. I've been friends with them both for a long time and was around to hear those stories as they were happening, but there is just something about seeing it all written out like made my heart flutter. I decided to try to do the same thing, although I know mine won't be quite as detailed since I'll be going five and a half years back to bring up these memories. The dates may be approximate and the timeline may be a little jumbled, but I want to try to capture the love and excitement and newness while I can still feel it...that part I remember like it was yesterday.

This sounds cheesy, but Chris is honestly the only person in the entire world that I can remember the exact first moment I saw him. It was either late 2004 or early 2005 (I remember it was cold outside because I was wearing a sweater and crocheted hat) and I went to TG (a college ministry that met on campus every Tuesday night for worship and a lesson.) I remember walking in and scanning the dim room looking for people I knew to say hello to before things got started. I saw my friend Nikolai and started towards him until I saw that he was sitting with some other guy and they were playing the guitar together. The other guy was Chris. Was it love at first sight? No. I was actually really annoyed and felt a little threatened by this musician who I assumed was coming in to try to steal the band's thunder (not that there was thunder to be stolen, but you know what I mean.)

I didn't talk to him that night. I actually don't think I officially "met" him for quite a while after that. We hung out with the same group of friends from TG, but he had a girlfriend that occupied a lot of his time and I was involved in quite a few activities, so we never really spent any time together. Now, I'm pretty sure it was Valentine's Day of 2006 that I got my tattoo. That night is the first time I remember actually talking to Chris. I had it all wrapped up in plastic and tape when I went to TG that night and he came up and asked to see it. All I really remember was him calling me "Smiles" like everyone did and I wondered if he thought that was really my name (a lot of people still do.)

Fast forward to the Spring of 2006. A group of friends invited me to see whatever X-Men movie was in theaters at the time. I'm not big on movies like that, but for some reason I decided to go. I don't even remember one other person that was there besides Chris, but I know there were probably seven or eight of us. We sat in smaller groups in two rows instead of stretching out over the entire theater. I (unintentionally on my part, he still had his girlfriend) ended up sitting next to him and he was on the end of our row so I was really the only person he had to talk to. He brought up my tattoo again and told me that he liked my hair that I had recently colored. I thought it was sweet that he'd noticed (I had just put some red under my blond so it peaked out the bottom, nothing drastic), but I still didn't think much of it.

Then we got to the end of the movie...cue the romantic and unrealistic love scene that makes everyone in the theater burst out in smiles and silent cheers. Chris and I looked at each other with the same confused and disgusted looks on our faces and started cracking up. We were the only two in the entire room that laughed. That was the exact moment that it clicked for me. I distinctly remember thinking "Uh-oh. I need to stay away from him." So I did.

Until about a month later when we started doing music together for TG. We had a pretty exhausting band practice one night and I took a break when it was over to lay outside and look up at the stars. Chris came and got on the ground next to me and looked up. He pointed at a group of blinking lights that was moving slowly across the sky and said "Look, Smiles! Do you see that satellite?" I laughed and replied "Are you talking about that airplane?" We both cracked up and decided it was time to head home. I was giving my friend Holly a ride when she got a text from Chris that said "Will you give Smiles my number?" We exchanged a few texts that night about shooting stars and airplanes and satellites and that was that.

Probably a week later, I got a mass text message from Chris asking if anyone wanted to go hiking that afternoon. I jumped on the opportunity, figuring it would be a big group of people and it'd be nice to get out and enjoy the gorgeous day. We arranged for everyone to meet in a church parking lot by the mountains so we could carpool. I showed up and found out that it would be just myself, Chris, and our friend Santi on the hike. We ended up having the best time. Everything from the ride to the trail (Chris couldn't find the turn) to the hike itself was a blast. When we got back to the church, Santi had to leave but Chris and I stayed in our cars parked next to each other with our doors open talking to each other for hours. We talked about everything (we even found out we lived in the same area of Minot, North Dakota when we were toddlers) and I didn't want it to end. There was obvious chemistry and I was starting to notice it more and more with each passing second. Then I was brought back to reality when he brought up his girlfriend. For some reason, I thought she was no longer in the picture. How could I feel so strongly for someone that couldn't feel the same way? I have been on the losing end of a cheating boyfriend and I would never do anything to mess up a relationship or hurt another woman like I'd been hurt before. Never. So I called it a day and decided I'd pull back hard on wherever what we had was headed.

What I couldn't do was stop being his friend. I was drawn to him. The weekend after the hike, a group of people decided to go to the drive-in. I went, not knowing that Chris was going to be there with his girlfriend watching a different movie. A few of our friends send him texts asking him to bring her over and come meet up with us, but he never did. I honestly didn't care, I figured he was having fun and I was having fun and that was all that mattered.

I think the weekend after (June 24, 2006-I remember this date because I had it engraved on a ring he has) was the 80's party. A friend threw it at a gathering house and we all came in the tackiest 80's outfits we could find, ate junk food, and watched movies like "Pretty in Pink." I spent the morning going from thrift shop to thrift shop to find the most ridiculous outfit I could. I settled on a hot pink tank top, a denim cutoff vest, a white mini skirt, and black lace leggings. I added tons of costume jewelry, a teased sky-high hair style complete with puffy hairspray covered bangs, a roll of Bubble Tape, and hot pink lipstick. Not exactly the outfit you plan on falling in love in.

I went walking up to the house and my friend who was throwing the party came running out to see my costume. We both stood on the front lawn laughing at how crazy the other one looked and Chris appeared on the front porch followed by his girlfriend. I'd never met her before, so I introduced myself and went in to hang out and get some food. I noticed them leaving a few hours later because he had to work, but he said he might be back when he was done. He did end up coming back and we sat in the living room having bubble blowing competitions with my Bubble Tape and laughing with each other until early the next morning when the party began to die down and people headed home.

Sunday we had TG band practice in the basement of the same house we'd been at the night before. Chris walked in and said he had a surprise for me. He opened up his bag and handed me a brand new package of Bubble Tape! I was done for. I kept my distance and we both remained respectful to God's timing, but I knew from that point forward that it was just a matter of time before he was with me.

Monday, Chris asked if he could get a ride to EC in Sugar House (where a huge group of people get together for ice cream and coffee to play music and talk and get to know each other) and I told him sure. It is about an hour drive each way and we spent the whole time talking. There was a story on the radio about a  man who died because he followed a butterfly off a cliff. He was distracted by the butterfly's beauty. Chris smiled at me and told me "That is totally something you would do!" It was such a defining moment for us and I can't even explain why. It was like he knew me on a deeper level than most people. I will never forget those minutes in time or how I felt. I was excited to be near him, but devastated that he couldn't be mine yet.

Tuesday, I saw him at the coffee shop before TG (it was a very common hangout for our group at the time.) He had a new glow to him and I could tell he was excited to see me. He came up and explained that his girlfriend had broken up with him the night before when he got home and they both knew it was the right thing. It had been over for a while and now it was official. He didn't go further into why it made him so happy, but we both knew. God's plan for us could officially start.

We call the day of the 80's party "Day 1" because for a couple hundred days after that, we saw each other every single day. Our first real date was probably a week or so after the party. He told me he was taking his dog swimming at Pine View and asked if I'd like to join them. I wore cuffed jean capris, a blue and green bikini top, a white tank top, and flip flops. I've always been terrified to swim in lakes so I planned on at the very most getting my feet wet. I don't remember where we met up...probably the church parking lot. He had his giant golden lab, Jake, in the back seat. We stopped at a pet store on the way to the lake to get some toys for Jake to play with in the water. We got to the lake and found a spot to park. We had to climb down this insanely steep and muddy hill (I slid down most of the way on my butt) just to get to the water. I gave up on looking cute about .02 seconds into the day and decided to just go for it. I still wasn't getting in the water though. No way.

Well...probably 15 minutes later I was up to my chin in water. I'll never know how he coaxed me in, but he did. There I was...swimming in my jeans, soaking wet hair, running mascara, covered in mud, and I could not have been more happy or felt more beautiful. The way he was looking at me made me feel how God meant for a woman to feel. Like I was it. I captivated him. I remember the sun started to set and he just stared at me from across the water. I'm sure I looked like a total mess but I didn't feel that way at all. It started to cool off so we made the hike back up the hill (which was even more fun in wet jeans!) He gave me a hoodie that he had in his trunk since I was in my bathing suit top and a now see-through tank. We stopped at the ice cream shop just outside of the canyon and got ice cream cones to eat as the sun finished setting. If I could pick a day to go back and live again, it would probably be that one. It was perfect and innocent and romantic and young and fearless and reckless and muddy and beautiful. We didn't even end the night with a hug. We didn't have to...God was making things happen on His time and we weren't there to rush it. We were just blissfully enjoying the beginning of the ride.

I remember running into a mutual friend that neither of us had seen in a few years. He asked us if we were "together." We had not officially said what we were to each other and after a quick glance at me, Chris gave the most beautiful answer: "We are His." We weren't doing this on our own. We refused to take our relationship into our own hands from the very beginning. On July 19, 2006 we decided in one of our late night text message sessions that we were going to officially go from being "His" to our new status: "We are His and each other's in Him." I remember getting that text message and feeling like I was going to explode. I woke up the next morning, crawled in bed with my mom, and told her "I think I have a boyfriend."

We did end up talking in person about our feelings for each other (Chris called it a "DTR" because he'd just read the book, haha!) but we've always celebrated the day those texts were exchanged as our dating anniversary. Things moved was at least a week before we even held hands. We had gone for a drive through the canyon and had made it back in town. I had the windows down and the sunroof open. I had both of my hands up resting on the roof or the car so I could feel the wind and Chris told me he loved that I didn't worry about messing my hair up by having the windows down. He reached up, grabbed my hand, and held it for a second in the wind before he pulled it back inside the sunroof and we locked fingers over the center console of his car.

It took close to a month for him to kiss me. We were talking in the church parking lot late one night and it was time for me to go home. I knew he wanted to, so I kept stalling. My mom called me and told me I had ten minutes to be home. I literally counted down the time out loud hoping he would make his move. "I have to leave in 8 minutes..." "I have to leave in 4 minutes..." Finally, I couldn't stall anymore and I had to go. I got in my car, he got in his, and I headed home. I was so upset and thought there must be something wrong with me. I was so caught up in my thoughts that I didn't notice right away that someone was following me. It was dark out and I couldn't tell what sort of car it was, so I just kept driving thinking if I could just get to my house I'd be safe (stupid, I know.) I pulled into my driveway and the car pulled up to the curb in front of my house. I realized it was Chris' car and my stomach jumped. I got out and walked up to him and asked him what he was doing. He said "I chickened out back there, but I didn't want to let tonight go by without giving you a kiss."

I changed my mind...if I could go back and relive any day in my life it would be that one instead. Sigh.

Like every relationship, we've had our ups and downs, but I don't believe there is anyone in this world that I would fit with like I do with Chris. He proposed for my birthday on May 23, 2008 by taking me back to the exact swimming spot we went on our first date and making me hike down that same muddy hill. He told me that he wanted to take me back to the first place that I dove in and faced my fears with him to ask me to continue to do so for the rest of my life. We got married on April 25, 2009 (we used butterflies as our theme and put the story of our drive to EC in our wedding programs) and I still plan on facing everything that comes our way-good or bad-head on with him by my side until I die. We've been through so much in the last five and a half years and I can honestly say there is nobody I would rather be on this crazy ride with. Neither of us are perfect, but we're perfect for each other.

Here we are at the end of 2011 and we're just a couple of months away from meeting our son...a brand new life created from the love that started between us so many years ago. As I sit here typing, Nolan is kicking away and I'm in tears remembering where this journey started with my best friend in the entire world and thinking of what amazing things are to come. I am so blessed to have found this love...everyone should experience this but I know not nearly enough people do. Thank you, God.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


A lot of my Facebook friends have been listing one thing they are thankful for each day this month and will continue to do so until Thanksgiving. I haven't been doing this because 1) I am not on Facebook enough and I would feel horribly guilty if I missed a day and 2) I tend to get a little obsessive about things like this and I feel like it would take the fun and the thankfulness out of it for me because I'd be too focused on my sentence structure and the flow of everything listed from week to week.

Horrible excuses, right? I have so much to be thankful for in my life right now. Why not type it out? I'm doing all 30 days of November in one happy post (to avoid the guilt of missing a day on Facebook.)

  1. I'm thankful for my health and the fact that I can get up and go to work each day without it being an issue.
  2. I'm thankful that I have a husband that supports me and stands by me no matter what crazy ideas I come up with. I couldn't ask for a better partner in life.
  3. I'm thankful for my son that I can't wait to meet and the fact that he is so strong and healthy and amazing.
  4. I'm thankful that my family loves Chris and Nolan as much as I do.
  5. I'm thankful for my home and vehicle that keep me extremely comfortable.
  6. I'm thankful that I don't have to worry about where my next meal is coming from. We always have food on the table and (some) money in our pockets. Our needs are met and then some.
  7. I'm thankful for the short time I got to be pregnant with Eden. I'd do it all over again to have another 13 weeks with her.
  8. I'm thankful for my mom who works harder than any woman I know and has always been a perfect example of what a strong woman should be.
  9. I'm thankful for my dad who has always been there for me and supported me when I've needed it the most.
  10. I'm thankful that I have loving parents who have taught me how to work hard and given me the skills and personality needed to succeed.
  11. I'm thankful for Peggy and Scott who have stepped in and taken on the roles of loving and supportive parents when they didn't have to.
  12. I'm thankful for Chris' family and how they have taken me into theirs as one of their own children.
  13. I'm thankful for the gifts Nolan has received from people who already love him so much and haven't even met him yet.
  14. I'm thankful that I can almost put my hair in a ponytail with no bobby pins to hold it up.
  15. I'm thankful for how easy this pregnancy has been and that I've hardly been sick at all.
  16. I'm thankful that my mom and brothers decided to come to church with us last weekend.
  17. I'm thankful that I have already done the grocery shopping for dinner tomorrow so I can curl up on the couch with Chris and cuddle instead of having to run to the store for food.
  18. I'm thankful for the security of my job and the work I'm able to do each day. It feels good to leave in the morning feeling like I've made a difference.
  19. I'm thankful for the work my coworkers (the police officers and firefighters) do each day and that they are willing to put their lives on the line to keep others safe.
  20. I'm thankful for the military and the many friends and family I have that have that have fought for our freedom and the freedom of so many people they'll never meet.
  21. I'm thankful for my sweet pets Star and Paisley and my family's pets JoJo, Fozzie, Lilly, and Gidget. they really do make life so much more fun!
  22. I'm thankful for the truth that good really does come of bad and everything happens for a reason. I've been blessed to have that shown to me again and again.
  23. I'm thankful that my family is willing to celebrate holidays on days when everyone can get together so I can still enjoy their company and the celebration even though I have to work on most actual holidays.
  24. I'm thankful that I found a pair of maternity dress slacks that fit well and are actually long enough for my legs.
  25. I'm thankful that both of my parents live within 15 minutes of my house.
  26. I'm thankful that Nolan will grow up with grandparents, aunts, uncles, and one day cousins that live near him and will be around to celebrate birthdays and holidays.
  27. I'm thankful that Nolan's grandparents and aunt that don't live in Utah love him enough to want to be a part of his life and are still willing to make a trip out to see him when he is born.
  28. I'm thankful for every boyfriend I had before Chris because they all did their part to shape me into the perfect wife for him.
  29. I'm thankful I have the ability to love as deep as I do and no amount of pain I've suffered has shut that part of me down.
  30. I'm thankful for God and how He pulls me back in every single time I stray.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

10 Things You Never Wanted To Know.

I'm bored and I still don't have my pictures uploaded to finish my important posts I'm working on, so here are ten random things you never knew you wanted to know and will probably never care about. Enjoy.

  1. I hate doing laundry with a passion. Such a passion that if I'm out of clean clothes, I'll usually go buy a new outfit (including underwear) to get out of putting anything in the washer.
  2. I hardly ever get jealous when Chris thinks another woman is physically attractive. I do, however, get extremely jealous when he thinks another woman is funny. If she can make him laugh, I have beef with her.
  3. I associate most 80's songs with an old VHS tape I had of a cartoon Barbie concert. If you ask me who sings "Straight Up" by Paula Abdul,  I'll tell you "Barbie" every single time.
  4. I have had Thanksgiving dinner for my birthday in May for years. Once a year just isn't enough for my mom's turkey and gravy.
  5. When I was in high school, I had really long, blond hair that almost reached my butt. After graduation I chopped it to my chin and colored it black with a box at home. It cost nearly $300.00 and took 3 trips to the salon (with different levels of orange hair between trips) to get my hair back to normal.
  6. Sometimes if I don't have anything interesting to talk about with Chris, I'll make up a story. It'll usually start out with "Oh! Did you hear..." and then I'll come up with something random like "that the guy who played the black Power Ranger in the first season was riding a bull and got electrocuted?" He used to believe me every time, but after 5 1/2 years, he questions almost every bit of celebrity gossip I tell him.
  7. Before I got pregnant, I couldn't drink milk unless I was eating warm cookies or cake because I thought it tasted like cheese. Now I go through a gallon every couple of days.
  8. I spend what I think borders on an unhealthy amount of time thinking about what my life would be like without certain people in it. I go through my family members and loved ones and ask myself how I would feel about my last interaction with them if I never saw them again. I spend a lot of time taking in details of people when I'm around them (the way their hair falls when they turn their head...the way they smell when they walk by...the way their chest rises up and down when they breathe...the way the corners of their eyes wrinkle when they laugh...) so that hopefully I won't feel like I took them for granted if anything happens to them and that was my last moment to be with them.
  9. I wish technology would just stop right where it is at. I like CDs and my old slider phone that I've had for 3 years and my boring laptop computer. I don't mind putting gas in my car and I appreciate that it doesn't talk to me while I'm driving. I just bought my first digital camera because I've always loved the feeling of getting a roll of film developed. I don't have an Ipod, I don't have Internet or games on my phone, and I don't have more than 7 channels on my TV. I don't feel like I'm missing anything either (my sweet husband would beg to differ.)
  10. I never thought that at 25 years old, I would be so content with my life. I am happy deep down inside where normally bitterness and sadness hides in people. My life is not perfect, but I would not change a thing. I feel blessed to be able to say that and know I'm not hiding anything.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Missing In Action.

So much to write about. So little time!

Actually...I have plenty of time. We'll just call it so little motivation. This will be a blanket update and when I upload my new pictures I'll do a full post on Park City and Eden's day as well as a post on the wonderful gift I received from my lovely friend Brittni. I should also do a more detailed update on Nolan...sheesh, I'm behind.

Well, here is my best blanket:

Park City was healing and beautiful and relaxing and I have a bunch of pictures that I can't wait to post. I survived October 7 without shedding a tear (writing my last blog entry was a whole different story.) I have the best husband and partner in crime that anyone could ever ask for. So that's that for now.

I'm a day shy of 25 weeks pregnant with my little man and I'm so in love. Chris felt his first really hard kick on October 15 and I'll never forget it. He has felt little wiggles here and there, but I've always secretly questioned if he was really feeling Nolan or if he was just telling me he was to make me happy. Around the 11 or 12, I felt my first really hard kick that made my belly bounce and my hand jump. I knew that once Chris felt that, there would be no questioning. But, of course, Nolan was a stinker and stopped kicking every single time I told Chris to feel for him.

On the 15, we had a Halloween party with  my family. We spent the evening on a ghost tour of our city then went back to my dad's house for chili, junk food, and a scary movie. Chris and I were on the couch and everyone was lost in the creepy disgustingness of the show when baby boy started going nuts (sugar rush!) I grabbed Chris by the hand and just moved it to rest on my belly while we finished watching the movie. All of a sudden BAM!!! Nolan made a soccer ball out of daddy's hand and kicked it harder than I have ever felt him kick. Chris screamed "Oh my gosh!" and pulled his hand away in surprise and (he won't admit this) a tiny bit of fear. No doubt he felt it that time. He's been a little squeemish to touch my stomach ever since that night. Haha!

I had a panic moment realizing I'm down to around 15 weeks and this kid will be here. My dad and Peggy are amazing and gave us money to purchase a stroller and car seat. After about a million trips to the store, I decided on this set:

I still can't believe that I'll have a baby to put in them in just a few months! I'm so ready for him to be here. Chris' dad and mom graciously offered to buy us a crib, so I just ordered that tonight! We decided on this one:

I've gone back and forth on nursery decor and I really think I'm to the point where I'm just going to go with colors and decorate with whatever I like instead of having a specific theme. I know I want chocolate brown, orange, and ivory...possibly some teal...I'm so indecisive. We have this painting in our house:

I keep coming back to it whenever I think of Nolan's room. Chris is an amazing guitar player and music played a huge role in he and I even dating in the first place. I like to think Nolan will have some sort of appreciation for what Chris and I love so much. Even if he doesn't, it is still a cute nursery idea, right? I'm really considering just working around this painting and not worrying about a "bird" or "music" or "owl" or "whatever" theme. When he gets old enough, he can decide what he wants his room to look like. For now, I just want it to be a fun and relaxing place for us to get to know each other.

I can't wait to actually meet him...

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Dancing With Angels.

Dear Eden,

Tomorrow should have been your birthday. I didn't know what I wanted to do for you, but I knew I wanted something that I could look back on to remember how I felt at exactly this moment. God decided (and I'm sure you helped) that Daddy and I needed your birthday off work so we could celebrate you. We are leaving tonight to Park City to stay in a beautiful hotel and enjoy our time together without any interruptions. Daddy is excited about the calamari at the restaurant that is downstairs in the hotel...I'm excited about what is supposed to be the most comfortable hotel bed in Utah. We're both excited for the mini-roadtrip (we're taking the long way), the change in scenery, and the gummy worms your little brother is demanding for the drive.

We had an ultrasound and got to see Nolan yesterday. I know that you see how big he is getting. It is so much fun to watch him wiggle around and to see how much he grows from visit to visit. We got a good look at his little face for the first time and Daddy thinks he has my nose. I wonder who you would have looked like. I picture you as a little girl version of Daddy with his nose and mouth, but my curly platinum blond hair. I can't help but think of you and what your ultrasounds would look like right now every time we walk in the doors of the Women's Center to see your little brother. I know you and God are working together to keep him safe and growing big and strong for us...he has a beautiful angel watching after him and I'll make sure he knows that when he is big enough to understand.

I think about earlier this year and how much I couldn't wait for tomorrow to be here. I felt like time was going by so slow and October 7th was a lifetime away. After we lost you, it seemed like all I did was blink and your due date was here. I wanted to be pregnant again by the time it came and although I can't wait to meet Nolan, it doesn't make me miss you any less. I wish you were still here. You were my first unexpected burst of tears after the positive pregnancy test that your Daddy and I had been waiting almost a year for, the first hug as I ran into his office and held up the test with shaking hands and let him know that you were growing in my belly, my first experience sitting in a doctor's office and hearing a heartbeat that was not my own coming from inside of my body, my first prayer for a child that I tried with everything in me to keep safe but in the end could not...

Nolan will come home and live in our house and I will get to hold him and snuggle him just like I spent 13 weeks dreaming of doing with you, but you will always be my first experience of love felt from a mother to her baby. You taught me to appreciate every bit of my new pregnancy and to never take a second of my time with your little brother for granted. I feel at peace knowing that you are spending what would have been your birthday up in Heaven and you are more taken care of than you ever could have been down here. When you left us, you were so tiny and frail but now you are perfect and strong and I'm sure your blond curls are blowing all over the place as you dance around up there.

So many people are thinking of you and loving you this week, little girl. Tomorrow will be spent in the mountains without phones or computers. It will just be Nolan, Daddy, and Mommy together in the middle of nowhere remembering you and celebrating what is to come. I'm sorry for writing this letter a day early but tomorrow needs to just be understand. I love you and I will never stop missing you or thinking of you.

Happy Birthday in Heaven, sweet baby...XOXO

Sunday, October 2, 2011


Nolan has become quite active lately. What amazes me is he has also become very interactive. The other night I was laying on my side in bed and Chris asked me if baby boy was moving. I told him that he was and rolled over on my back so he could try to feel. He hadn't been able to before so I was only half paying attention and sort of directing his hand to where I felt the kicks. To my shock, Nolan followed his hand! He kicked him pretty hard on the left side of my belly (where I always feel him) and Chris moved his hand more to the center and Nolan kicked him again (where I've never felt him.) It was like they were playing and I had the most precious seat in the house.

The next night I was laying in bed trying to take a nap before work and baby boy starting wiggling around like crazy. I spent almost two hours laying in different positions, feeling him follow my hands around my belly with his kicks, and cracking up as he responded to different things like when I took a deep breath or laughed. I looked at my clock and couldn't believe how much time had passed but it was so amazing and so entertaining that I couldn't stop. Finally, Nolan went to sleep so I did too.

My favorite part of the week is that he is now responding to music. Well, two songs. Yesterday, while I was on my way home from work, some old slow song (that for the life of me I can't remember the name of) came on and all of a sudden he was dancing away until the song stopped. I didn't feel him again until later that night when I was on my way to the grocery store and "Hey Baby" by No Doubt came on. All of a sudden, it was another dance party in my belly until that song ended. I think that is absolutely hilarious and incredible...although Chris and I are a little bit concerned about his taste in music.

I am thankful I have this little boy to play with and love on as we come up on October 7. I still can't believe it is almost here. Nolan makes it a little bit easier, but my heart is still broken. I just need to get through this week...(as I typed that, baby boy gave me a strong kick and a little wiggle...he's here for me and so is his Daddy...I'm blessed.)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Life Lessons Learned.

It is much easier to pass judgment a person than it is to take the time to show compassion. Negativity, be it about your own life or someone else's, is a choice you make every day. Stop complaining for a second and open your eyes to the rest of the world. Some people's stories will put things into perspective really fast. What a humbling day.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Didn't See That Coming.

It is creeping up on me. This coming Friday, I should be 38 weeks pregnant. I have been so focused on making sure Nolan is healthy and growing that Eden has sort of been pushed to the back of my mind (I feel so horrible saying that.) Now, out of nowhere, her should-be-birthday is just about here. It was 25 weeks ago today that we found out her heart was no longer beating. How is that even possible?

I've been thinking about her more and more over the last week or so. Right after my surgery, I scheduled some time off work around what was supposed to be her due date. I hoped that Chris and I would be in a position that we could take an amazing vacation to celebrate her and take our minds off of the sadness at the same time. Of course, with his job situation, that didn't end up being a possibility. Up until today, I planned on spending the two weeks relaxing at home and getting things ready for Nolan.

Thankfully, God had other plans and Chris found out yesterday that he has two days off in a row in October, including her due date. He never gets two days off in a row! We decided we'd take a mini vacation and go somewhere we haven't been together before. We ended up getting an amazing deal on a gorgeous hotel room in Park City ($138.00 total for two nights in a nearly $300.00 a night room!) You can't tell me God did not have a hand in that. He knew we needed to get away, just the two of us. We'll head down there when he gets off work on the 6th and we'll be able to spend her entire due date (the 7th) down there relaxing, remembering, and enjoying each other. We'll come home the evening of the 8th.

After we booked the hotel last night, I was sat on the couch with Paisley to relax before I had to leave for work. Instead, I was slapped in the face with grief. I received a picture from a friend who had just delivered her baby girl a few hours prior. Now, I've had friends give birth since I lost Eden. I've held babies, cuddled them, rejoiced with dear friends as they became moms and dads for the first time, and all without even a twinge of sadness for my own. Honestly! This baby girl, however, was due on October 7...the same day as Eden. I have wondered for a long time how I would react to her birth and I thought I still had a couple of weeks to prepare myself, but she decided to make her debut early and catch me off guard. I instantly burst into tears. Chris jumped up and ran to my side asking who died. Yeah. It was that bad.

*What happened next I do not blame anyone for. Chris just happened to be the person at my side at the time, but I'm sure the conversation would have been similar no matter who I was with. He is not insensitive and misses Eden just as much as I do.*

Chris began to remind me that I'm pregnant again and I need to focus on Nolan instead of Eden. He told me that it isn't healthy to be jealous of other people's babies and that I shouldn't be sad. I, through my sobs, explained to him that this has nothing to do with Nolan and it has nothing to do with being jealous of my friend's baby. Nolan and Eden were two separate lives and just because I have him growing inside of me doesn't discount the fact that she died inside of me just 30 days before he came to be. Just because I'm upset about Eden doesn't mean I love Nolan any less. They are two completely different people.

As for being jealous of the new baby...that is not the case either. I'm thrilled that her baby is healthy and there weren't any complications with her delivery. Her baby is not my baby. I was just sad because it was my first visual reminder of what I don't have. That little girl is how big and how cuddly and how warm Eden would be right now if she didn't die. Up until now, I've only had my imagination and a few ultrasound pictures to go off of. Now, I have a beautiful, living, breathing human being that was to be born on the same exact day as my baby girl to look at and compare to my dreams of what could have been.

As soon as I explained my feelings to Chris, he turned around very fast. He knew where my heart was and I think my sudden outburst of emotion just caught him off guard. He spent the next hour holding me and letting me cry.

These next 16 days should be interesting...

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

What's In A Name?

I announced our little man's name on Facebook today without even meaning to, so I guess it is time to bring my blog in the loop as well. Most of you already know...but for those of you who don't, here it is:

Nolan Christopher

I had a reply from a friend after I spilled the beans saying she hoped I would share the story of how we came up with his name on my blog. I wish I could say I had a creative and thoughtful story to tell like she has with her little girl, but that isn't really the case. Here it is anyways!

We were one of those couples who talked about baby names really early in our relationship. We knew that one day we would get married and that we wanted a family, so why not? We've had a boy name and a girl name picked out for years. Sadly, the boy name we have always loved, Liam, has become insanely popular over the last year or so. When we decided we were ready to have children, we went back to the drawing board. I am not against "trendy" names, but I don't want my kid to be one of 12 Liams in his class either. 

I really like names that start with "L", so I started pulling up lists of baby boy names and just scanning through that letter. I spent a lot of time searching the meaning of different Hebrew names as well, since that is something that really appealed to us. I fell in love with the name Lyric since my husband and I have always been very musical, but decided he'd probably be made fun of. 

I am really into the meaning of names. I decided to focus my search on what different names meant, then see if there was one I liked based on that instead of just how the name sounded. I wanted something strong and masculine. I'm part Irish, so I started browsing that section of whatever website I was on. I came across the meaning "Champion" and saw the name Nolan attached. I loved it the instant I saw it! It was not a name that Chris or I had even considered, but as soon as I asked him if he liked it, we knew it was meant for our child. Chris was excited because when he was little, he had a collection of Nolan Ryan baseball cards that really meant a lot to him. If that was the association he wanted to make, I was all for it. I was just happy we agreed on a name!

Picking out a middle name was easy. It is a tradition in Chris' family to give the first son the name of the father as his middle name. I loved it because that way, Nolan will have a piece of his dad with him always.

So, there you have it. Our not-so-creative baby name story. On a more exciting note, little man was moving all over the place today! I was laying on my side after work and he was kicking away. As soon as I put my hand on my tummy where he was kicking to see if I could feel him, he stopped until I took my hand away. It was fun to interact with him, but I really wish he would let me feel him from the outside!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Tacks On My Chair.

Chris and I had an interesting conversation tonight while we were eating dinner. Apparently, we both have been feeling the same way about a lot of things but we were too nervous to express it to each other (which is very unlike us.) We both feel like we're on the edge of something...we just don't know what. I don't know how successful I'll be at typing this out, but I'm going to try.

We are happy...but we're not. I love my life right now and for where I am at right this very second, I wouldn't change a thing. However, this is not what I want for my life in the long run. I'm not okay with stopping here. I feel like so many people have their first child and other things go on hold. I'm not that kind of person.

Chris' job situation has been frustrating for both of us lately. He wants so badly to get through school and has a grant that is just sitting there waiting for him, yet his work schedule makes it completely impossible for that to happen. They refuse to budge, even just a little bit. We walk a fine line nowadays between being thankful for his job, and wishing he didn't so he could finish his certification and move on to what he loves to do.

I love my job and wouldn't go anywhere if I could, but I feel stuck knowing that I wouldn't have that option right now if I chose to. We need things that only my job can provide at the moment. That is a very scary position to be in with a baby on the way and the possibility of bed rest or complications with the delivery.

I am so blessed with a husband that will literally do anything for me. He works so hard through tears and a disgusting amount of stress without complaining to take care of our family. He deserves so much better than this. I have told him from day one that I will follow him wherever he goes and I will support him in any decision he makes for us. We are a team, but I trust him to lead me. We are really there for each other through thick and thin.

Chris said tonight that he would love to see what our life will be like in 20 years. I'd be curious to see that too. I know this is all part of the ride. We'll get there when we get there. We shouldn't wish time away. I just feel restless right now. I'm anxious to see what my husband is going to accomplish. He has such big plans for us (a lot of which I had no idea about until tonight) and I'm ready to get things going! Is that so much to ask?

*Sorry for the choppy paragraphs. I don't feel like I have ever written a post that flowed so poorly. Oh well, what do you do?*

Monday, September 12, 2011

Frogs. Snails. Puppy Dog Tails.

It was confirmed on September 7, 2011...our little family is growing by one little boy! We could not be more excited. I can't say I was surprised. I had a feeling baby was a he from the time I found out I was pregnant. It was nice to hear my midwife say the words, though!

I went in for my follow up appointment to make sure baby was okay after my fall. I will admit that I have been very spoiled this pregnancy, and listening to the heartbeat on the doppler in the emergency room was just not enough. I needed to actually see my baby and make sure he was okay. Luckily, my midwife agreed and I didn't even have to ask. The only disappointment of the day was that Chris was unable to go to the appointment with me due to work. He and I were both really sad that he had to miss it.

She pulled up his picture, and there was my squirmy little spaz baby. Right away she said "well, that looks like a boy!" She checked him from a few more angles and there was no denying: baby is 100% male. The ultrasound didn't last long. She checked around and made sure we were both okay and there was not any trauma that the emergency room missed. I was excited to get out of there and tell Chris the happy news!

It is times like that when I really appreciate the fact that my husband works from home. I would have died waiting for him to get off work so I could tell him in person. I got to run right up to our office and spill the beans! He was happy, but not surprised either. We both already knew. We didn't wait to tell family or friends in any special way, just text messages and phone calls for us. We're so creative, I know.

Remember a while back when I said we've had our baby girl and baby boy names picked out forever? Well, we've been calling this baby our boy name for quite a while. I'm pretty sure if baby had been a girl, she would have been born with some sort of complex. Do you want to know something strange? Nobody has asked us what we're naming him. That is always my first question when I find out of someone is having a boy or a girl. I am such a name person.

If you ask me, I'll tell you. If you don't, I won't. For now, I'll hold off on announcing it on the blog. It'll give me something to write about later. Anticipation is a lovely thing!

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Dodge. Dodge. Dodge.

So it continues. Yesterday, my day couldn't have started out better. I woke up early and went to the dentist. I know that doesn't sound like a whole lot of fun, but I love how it feels when I get to walk out of those doors knowing I don't have to be back for 6 months. No cavities! I ran some errands and was feeling so accomplished, so I rewarded myself with a cherry limeade from Sonic. I was cruising around with my windows down, my music up, enjoying the fresh air. I found an adorable baby gift for my friend who is due any day with her little girl. Sounds like a nice morning, right?

So I pulled into my driveway and stepped out of my car with my sweet baby gift in one hand and giant drink in the other. All of a sudden, I was on the ground. I guess I should say, the ground was jabbed violently in my stomach. I tripped over something and landed belly-first on the sharp curb outside of my house. I hit it with such force that it knocked both of my shoes off my feet and they landed in the street. Some guys that were working in my yard came to help me up, put my shoes back on my feet, and collect the pieces of the shattered baby gift for me. I was a bloody, scraped up mess.

So I went inside, shaken up and worried to death about my baby (who took most of the hit inside my belly), and called my midwife. She was delivering a baby, so she told me to go straight to the emergency room. I was in tears when I told Chris I had to go be monitored. He advised his supervisor, logged off his computer, and got me to the car without blinking an eye. He's a good husband.

Fast forward through the check-in process to the monitoring room. The doctor comes in and tells me that since I'm under 20 weeks, they wouldn't need to do an ultrasound. He listened to the heartbeat with a doppler (which was a beautiful sound) and determined that baby was not in distress. As someone who is used to ultrasounds at every appointment, this was difficult for me, but he assured me it was good enough. Then, he took tons of blood to make sure that mine wasn't mixing with baby's blood. Scary...I was there for a couple of hours while they listened to him and watched me and finally they decided I was fine to go home and rest for the night (which meant a night off work, which I was less than thrilled about.)

So, after the panic of what might have come of that fall died down, another reality slapped us in the face. Chris left work in the middle of his shift to take me to the emergency room. His job is not very sensitive, and he was already on thin ice for taking time off the day I had my D&C for my miscarriage. We were pretty sure he would go to work this morning, and no longer have a job. We rely on both of our incomes, and while we could survive on mine, it would be tight and very stressful. I couldn't even imagine how things would be with a new baby.

So we spent the morning re-working our budget and figuring out where we could cut back until he was able to find another job. Not exactly the type of budgeting you want to be doing at 4.5 months pregnant. Luckily, his boss decided to show him a little grace today. He technically "should have" been fired, according to their crazy rules. Instead, he got off with a meeting and a final warning. So, in other words, we need to pray that we don't have any more emergencies before this baby gets here.

I updated my status on Facebook today to something along the lines of "I need to join a dodgeball league. I've been playing a mean game with the universe and so far I'm winning!" God has us...I'm just ready to get my toes out of the fire. It burns!

Thursday, September 1, 2011

I Gave In.

My sweet baby needed these...I couldn't resist. It felt so good to buy them! I couldn't stop smiling. I feel like it was such a huge step for me. Next step? Taking my first belly picture.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Waiting For Rain.

I am in a funk. After the scare with Chris that I wrote about last week, I have felt like something bad is coming. We dodged that bullet, but ours is in the air. I don't know where these feelings are coming from. The devil? I have never been big on karma or "getting what is coming to you." God is in control of all that happens, good and bad. So why can't I shake this?

I don't want to go into detail on this, but I also had a pretty serious health scare a couple of days ago. It is something I decided to keep between Chris and myself, I don't even want to talk to family about it. It didn't have anything to do with the baby, so you don't have to worry there. However, I walked into an appointment on Monday fully expecting to walk out with life-shattering news. Things are okay for now, which I'm so thankful for, but in the back of my mind I couldn't help but think of it as yet another dodged bullet. Another missed opportunity for whatever evil is out to get my family to latch on...

I pray for God to protect us. I pray for Him to take away the feelings I have. I need to stop waiting for everything to come crashing down around me. Right now, I'm okay. Chris is okay. Baby is okay. What am I so afraid of?

I'm scared to death to buy anything for our baby. I'm coming up on 17 weeks, and I can't even bring myself to walk through the baby clothes at the store. I tried to look at little Converse sneakers last night online, and just about sent myself into a full blown panic attack. Other people have been buying things, and that's fine. It is their money. I would rather have my money saved up to pay for medical care if something goes wrong. When I lost Eden, I had to come up with a huge amount of cash before they would even let me schedule my surgery. I pray, and I pray, and I pray that this baby is not going anywhere...but somewhere in my mind I'm afraid that if I buy something, things will go bad and I will be left holding the sneakers or diapers or blanket and wishing I had the cash to pay for the medical procedure instead.

I feel like a sick and messed up person. I don't talk about these things openly with friends and family, and I'd rather not. I'll leave it here, and if people choose to read it, they can. I feel like it makes me sound ungrateful for what I have. I wouldn't trade where I'm at in my life for anything in the world, and I'm madly in love with my husband and baby. I know there are so many women that would kill to be pregnant (I was there for over a year...) and I don't want them to read this and think I don't want what I have. I just feel like, at least for now, my glass-half-full outlook on life is taking a break on me.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


I feel like I'm in a mean game with the universe. Right now, I'm still standing. When is the rubber ball going to smash me in the face? How to I keep getting so lucky and dodging these awful things being thrown my way?

Thursday, August 25, 2011

My Little Avocado.

I suppose "Baby is beautiful" isn't really the pregnancy update people were expecting, so I decided to elaborate a little bit. I'm 16 weeks and starting to feel really great! My appetite is back with a vengeance, which I haven't decided if I like or not yet. My appointment last Wednesday was amazing. I was nervous about her trying to do the ultrasound on the outside of my belly because of how my uterus was positioned. The last time I had an external ultrasound was when we found out that Eden's heart stopped and it took her so long to pull up anything on the screen, so she finally went internally and we got the bad news. I was scared that she wouldn't be able to pull anything up right away this time and I would panic. But literally as soon as she set the wand on my stomach, baby popped up on the screen.

He was not quite as hyper as last time we saw him, but he was huge! Chris and I were really hopeful that I was far enough along to find out if baby is a boy or girl. No such luck. She didn't even want to take a guess because of how similar male parts and female parts look when they are so small. I still call baby "he" and Chris and I are certain that we'll be bringing home a son in February, but we'll have to wait a little while longer for confirmation.

She showed us how his organs are developing and we were able to see his heart, kidneys, bladder, stomach, brain, spine, ribs, and umbilical cord pumping blood. She said everything is looking wonderful and he was measuring right at 15 weeks on the dot (I was 15 weeks the day of my appointment.) She switched the ultrasound over to 4D so we could try to get a good look at his face, but he is shy. The picture I posted last week was the best one we got, and I can't stop looking at it. That's our baby!

As for me, things are looking great there too. She picked up the picture of our baby right in the middle of my belly, which means my uterus is back to where it should be. My thyroid levels look wonderful, so there should be no more adjusting my medications. I'm officially off progesterone and the aftermath has passed. I gained my first pound of the entire pregnancy from weeks 12-15, which my midwife was happy about. Overall, things are looking perfect! Chris and I could not be more thrilled.

I can't express to you how loved this baby is. Eden made me appreciate every single part of this pregnancy. I might not enjoy it all, but I appreciate it and wouldn't trade it for anything. I can't wait to feel him kicking (so far, only a few tiny flutters.) Keep growing, little man!

If Tomorrow Never Comes.

What a whirlwind couple of days! Chris gave me quite the scare. About a month ago, he started getting really bad headaches. Every time he complained of one, I would ask the same two questions: "Did you have coffee today?" followed by "Well then, make an appointment with the eye doctor!" He mentioned a while back that he thought he needed glasses since he had them as a child, so I just assumed his poor vision was making him ill and he could take care of it when he decided he was in enough pain to go in and get glasses (I know, so sympathetic.)

Then, approximately a week ago, the headaches started getting bad. He turned into a grouchy and miserable zombie and didn't want to do anything. He would snap at me, then quickly follow that up with "I'm sorry, I don't feel well." It continued to get worse, and I started to get a little nervous. Then, I came home from work one morning and he told me he had lumps on his scalp. I felt the back of his head, and noticed two solid masses, each bigger than a quarter. I freaked out, jumped out of bed, and right on WebMD. What a horrible idea that was! Within a few seconds, I had his diagnosis narrowed down to a brain aneurysm or tumor. Lovely.

He was also searching on his phone (in a slightly less erratic state than I was) and found a reputable site that said to watch the lumps for a month and if there was no change, or if they became worse, to go get them checked. Fine. I agreed to watch them like a hawk and if I noticed them getting bigger at all, he was going in. Well, that lasted a whole 24 hours.

I got home from work the following morning (Monday) and he said he woke up in the middle of the night and felt like he was falling out of bed. The room was spinning, his head was throbbing, and his scalp was burning. The lumps seemed to be getting bigger, so we scheduled an appointment for that evening when he got off work (his job doesn't like to let him have time off for anything, not even a possible brain tumor. He actually got in trouble for taking a couple of emergency days off with me when Eden died and I had to have surgery.)

Okay, so by this point I was totally freaking out. Sobbing. I had diagnosed him myself, and I was trying to prepare myself for the news. Now, I know I really need to stay away from the internet when I am stressed about something, but I can't help it. I'm a researcher. I might be horrible at it sometimes, but in my twisted mind it makes me feel more at ease to have a bad answer than no answer at all. At least that gives me something to plan for and I'm not blindsided by awful news when it comes (like I was with Eden.)

So I curled up on the bed in our office and watched Chris work. Still sobbing. Imagining his funeral. Wondering what I was going to do with all of our bills. Thinking about the birth of our baby and how our little one would never know his father. That started a whole new roll of sobs. I pictured myself holding a perfect tiny version of Chris and thought of what it would be like to raise our son without him. I thought of the baby growing and talking and walking and looking just like him...learning how to play the guitar...obsessing over was a long freaking morning.

We finally got to the doctor's office and thank goodness it was not a long wait. After about an hour of blood work, neurological tests, a vision screening, and lots of poking and prodding, we learned...I'm a drama queen. Stroke? No. Tumor? Nope. Aneurysm? Nada. Vision? Just fine. Blood cell count? A little high. The doctor said that he was not concerned, and he would take more blood to have it tested thoroughly, but all of the major risks were ruled out. The lumps? Swollen lymph nodes caused by allergies.

We got his blood work results yesterday. Apparently, he has some sort of virus in his bloodstream. Again, doctor said it is nothing to be concerned about. He gave Chris a simple medicine routine to follow over the next week or two, and if he does not start feeling better, he'll go back in for further testing to find out specifically what the virus is and treat it that way. After only two days on his medicine, he is already starting to feel better and I feel like I have my husband back.

What is the moral of this story? Pregnancy hormones suck. But more importantly, I am so thankful for Chris. He does so much for me and he is going to be an amazing dad. Lastly, it is time to grow up. Tomorrow is not promised to anybody, and I've always approached that from an emotional standpoint. Practically, I would be screwed if anything happened to Chris. I could support myself and our child on my income, but what would I do with all of his bills? Funeral costs? It disgusts me to even have to think of these things, but we have a baby that will be here before we know it and it is time to really get things in line.

I got a quote for life insurance for Chris and our baby yesterday (I'm covered through  my job), and we'll be going to fill out the paperwork next week. It is so much more reasonable than I thought it would be, and I know a lot of you out there believe it is frivolous for "young people" to buy life insurance, but this week has taught me that you never know what the future has in store for you. I would much rather skip a meal at a nice restaurant once a month to cover insurance costs than to ever be put in a situation where I wished I had the coverage and didn't. I pray that we'll pay for this for 70 years and never use it...even then, in my opinion, it will still be money well spent.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Quick Update.

I was so worried for is beautiful. 

Today Is The Tomorrow I Worried About Yesterday.

It is 12:35 in the morning. Do you know what that means? It is here. My appointment. I'll be honest, I'm feeling a little bit of anxiety. It has been three weeks and two days since my last check-up and that is the longest I've gone without seeing my baby since I found out I was pregnant. The last time I went that long between doctor's appointments, I went in to find out my baby wasn't alive anymore. I had no was over, just like that.

I have felt wonderful about this baby up until yesterday. I don't have a real reason to feel like things have gone bad, it is just my nerves taking hold again. I got home from work in the morning and realized I had not felt sick for almost 20 hours and I panicked. Then, as I went through my day and the nausea didn't return, I got even more worked up. I practically yelled my thanks to God when I got in my car last night and the smell of the hot interior made me vomit in my mouth. At least it was something!

All of the little twinges I've been feeling in my lower belly for the past month have stopped too. I am so used to the cramping feeling every time I sneeze, cough, or stand up to fast, that now I feel like I'm missing something. I'm just telling myself that my uterus is taking a break from the rapid stretching it has been doing, maybe it is big enough for baby to grow inside and fill it out for a while.

I really wish I knew how to get through this without analyzing every cramp, sickness, and feeling I have in my body. I feel like I have to keep a lot of what I'm feeling to myself (besides this blog) because there are so many people counting on this baby being born in February and I don't want to scare anyone. I live with the fear on my own, and I'm okay with that. Although I don't fully trust that I will not have any issues with this pregnancy and my baby will be born in a few months (as hard as that is to admit...), I trust with all of my heart that God is in control of every part of this baby and our life and what is supposed to happen is going to.

I can't help but think of Eden and the impact she has made even though she never even lived to take her first breath. She was put here for a reason, and it doesn't matter that I think her time here was too short. She and God are working together up there making sure she continues to accomplish everything she was sent here to do, and it blows me away. This baby is no different. He is here for a distinct purpose, and while I pray every single day that his purpose is to come live with me and teach me what it really is to be a mother, I'll rejoice in whatever God has planned for him.

Enough worrying, I'm sure things will be fine later. I just tend to overthink things, and that is what this blog is for. Today I am pregnant, and I love my cherry limeade and celery obsessed little baby.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

I Miss You, Prometrium.

Today is not a fun day. Thursday was my first day off of my progesterone supplement since I was 4 weeks pregnant, and my body is missing the extra hormones. I stayed on it for a week longer than I probably should have for two reasons: 1) I have heard horrible things about the withdrawal symptoms and 2) I was scared to death that the pill was the only thing keeping my baby in there and once I stopped, my pregnancy would be over.

Lets talk for a second about the withdrawal. It sucks. Bad. I have said before and I'll say again- I will do anything if it means I got to bring home a healthy baby in February. This is nothing more than another hurdle for me to get my big belly over to get to the prize and I'm all game. I just didn't realize I'd be quite so sick. If I stop to think about it, it makes sense. My body has received a surge of hormones every single day at the same time for 10 weeks now. Then, all of a sudden, it stopped. I did some research on what I would experience after quitting the medication and I was scared to death. Violent migraine-induced vomiting, extreme fatigue (as if I haven't been experiencing enough of this as it is), mood swings, and vertigo. So...basically pregnancy on crack.

I felt pretty good for most of Thursday. I was tired, but that is pretty normal for me lately. Then I went to bed that night and woke up around 4:00 am feeling horrible. I haven't had a migraine like that in a long time. I tried to get up and move around, but that didn't work out well. I got back in bed with my beloved Snoogle and cuddled up for the long haul. I finally got back to sleep around 10:00 and didn't wake back up until Chris got me out of bed around dinner time. I tried eating dinner, but it was rough. I ended up crashing again on the couch until it was time for me to rush and get ready for work. Now, I'm sitting here, head throbbing, and trying not to throw up all over my computer. Five more hours and I can go back to bed.

I'm not complaining, I'm explaining. My baby is still in there acting like a wild child and that makes every little pain I feel worth it 100 times over. I can feel him growing and I can't wait until my appointment on Wednesday to see how much bigger he is. I was terrified that it was the pill that was keeping my baby in there and I spent all of Thursday and most of Friday waiting for the bleeding to start. I hate living in fear. I prayed and prayed that he would stay in his cozy home he's made himself, and so far I think he has. I still have the twinges and what I'm assuming are growing pains (my midwife calls them RLP) and those are oddly comforting.

Dear Baby, I love you so much, but it would be really nice to eat something other than raw vegetables and orange juice without losing my cookies afterwards. I love that you love celery, but Mommy really loves meat. Can we compromise? You let me eat steak for dinner and I'll give you celery for dessert. Deal?

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Queen Of The Castle.

So, do you remember how excited I was about my Snoogle? Well, I had no idea it would also serve as a very expensive doggie bed. Paisley has adopted it the five nights a week that I work, so I come home in the morning to this. Snug as a pug in a Snoogle.

Friday, August 5, 2011

This Is My Diary.

Hormonal vent to follow: So, here I am, awake at 04:16 on my only night off from work this week. I sat in bed for over an hour, staring at the ceiling and wondering whether or not I wanted to jump on and write about this or not. I flashed back to having dinner with a good friend earlier this week. He sat down in the booth on the other side of me, put up his hand to give me a high-five, and congratulated me on the "realest blog ever." This has become my sanity in everything that I've gone through, and whether people like all that I write or not, going back and reading my highs and lows of the last 8 months has been so therapeutic for me. It is my diary, but I don't lock it up and hide it under my bed. I share it with anyone who chooses to read it and pray that somehow it speaks to them. This morning? I'm I'll write.

Let me start out by saying that I have the most loyal, loving, and devoted husband that a woman could ask for. He is not shy to tell anyone who asks him that I am his world. I trust him more than I ever thought possible, down to the very bottom of my heart. I know without a doubt that he would never, ever do anything to hurt me.

That said, let me introduce you to the beautiful world of pregnancy hormones. I woke up this morning feeling more insecure than I can ever remember feeling. I had a horrible dream: I was sitting at dinner with my mom and could not get Chris to text me back or answer my phone calls. I was concerned because there was a huge snow storm rolling in and he needed new tires on his car, so I wanted me to make sure he made it home safe before it hit and he was stuck out in it. I called, and called, and called. Finally, I got an answer and all I could hear was static and a female's voice. I assumed he was at his family's house and I headed home for the night, hoping he would meet me there.

I walked in to a dark and empty house. I went up to our bedroom and sat on our bed, waiting for him to come home. When he finally walked in, I asked him how the roads were and why he was not responding to my text messages or phone calls. He was really quiet and seemed annoyed, so I questioned a little bit further to make sure he was okay. Finally, he said he was over at his friend, Cody's house. I asked who the female was on the line when I called (assuming it was Cody's wife) and Chris changed his story. He said he had been home the whole time, but he had a friend over. Someone I had not met. Her name was Ashley and he had just given her a ride home.

I asked what they were doing, and Chris said she was there to help him clean. We have a general rule (with exceptions, of course) that one of us is not to be alone with a member of the opposite sex in our house without the other one home. He was still acting sort of strange, but eventually (after more questioning) he went on to tell me that I was not beautiful anymore now that I was pregnant and he was more attracted to Ashley because she didn't have a baby stretching her out. He wanted to spend time with her because she did not sleep all day, he didn't have to hear her throw up, and her body looked how a body was "supposed to look." They could just go out, have fun, and not worry about a baby in her stomach.

That's around the time I woke up. I didn't realize that I was feeling so insecure, but as I was laying there trying to fall back asleep, so many emotions surfaced that I didn't know I had. This has nothing to do with Chris. In my dream, he was just the voice of my own subconscious. I am so thankful for this baby, but I feel like an outsider in my body. I'm only in the beginning of my second trimester, and everything is changing so much. It is not just weight shifting (which is weird...I have not gained a pound but I feel huge! It is all migrating to my stomach.) My skin is breaking out, the hair on my head is frizzy, the hair on my body grows back faster than I can shave it, I have dark circles under my eyes that won't go away, my teeth feel dirty no matter how many times I brush them, none of my clothes fit, I get winded walking up the stairs, and my idea of spending time with my husband is sleeping next to him on the couch while he watches television. Romantic.

I know that my body is busy creating a miracle. I am so thankful that God blessed me with the ability to create a life. I am growing my child inside of myself, and there is nothing more incredible to think about. Honestly, if God told me that the only way for my baby to be healthy was for me to give up showering, shaving, makeup, and to gain 500 pounds, I would do it without blinking an eye. It is just strange and new for me. I've never thought of myself as a vain person, but I've always been fairly comfortable with myself. I felt pretty. Lately, I haven't. I love my life, I love my husband, and I love this baby that is growing inside of me more than anything. I'm very blessed. I need to stop being so damn shallow.

There you go, how's that for real?