Thursday, February 23, 2012

Breathing in the sunshine and the last moments of now

So I'm very much aware of how my life is going to drastically change any day now. I would be lying if I said I wasn't nervous. Many people ask me, "Are you ready?" "Are you excited?" And, no, I'm not. You see after having Zoe it was a very hard a dark few months. She cried nonstop it seemed (due to being in pain from her milk allergy that we did not know about), except when nursing. This meant I cried all the time and being stuck at home (for I surly couldn't take a screaming child anywhere) to try to deal with/comfort this poor thing was not what I expected. The guilt was high for not being excited and joyful. The anxiety deep for keeping this infant alive and well. In fact, I asked myself why I even wanted to do this? I thought being a mother was what I always wanted, then why did I seem to want anything else.

Fortunately, that phase has passed and, despite its own new challenges, I can't imagine life without Zoe; she brings so much joy to me and to those that she comes in contact with. But the fact of having to go through all the hardships again of a newborn (especially now with also having a toddler) is scary but I know that Shiloh may (and hopefully will be) different... but she may not.

All that to say, is that when today's Februaryness called for 80 temperatures (did I mention how much I hate cold weather) and my babysitter was sick (so I guess I can't go to work :-), I knew that we had to take advantage of the time we had, so off to the zoo we went. Zoe was pretty tired by the time we got there, which actually worked out well in that she stayed in her stroller pretty subdued (very unZoe like) for most of the time. This is good for an overdue momma not to have to chase her around to much.
I loved how when she would see the animals she would say, "Touch it," (even to these lovely birds) but would settle for just waving at them.
When she finally could not stand it anymore and was released from the stroller, she ran up to other kids, invading their space, so excited to see them....yes she is ready for a sibling for sure!
Upon getting on the lion she instructed me to push her but was satisfied in my explanation that it just wouldn't move, no matter how strong mommy may be.
I just cherished the moments I could hold her, knowing that life would forever be changed soon; I just loved watching her dance along the winding trail to the African music, clapping when a song was over and giving her big "Please" when wanting more. How wonderful to be a child, when the music and spirit tells you to move, you do and you love it and you could care less who else is around.
I'm so thankful for this special day I feel the Lord gifted us with to enjoy his creation and each other and to prepare my heart and mind for what is soon to come!

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Headed to the hospital...false alarm...ummm then home again

Ok, tonight is the night, I thought, after being in pain for a few hours. The contractions had started and, although not super strong yet, I knew that could change. So I tried to get some rest and peace after a long day at work to gear up for the long night that could be to come. It was so good to be able to do so and I felt more ready. Ok....they were still coming 2-8 minutes apart and my Dr. had told me that when they were 10 minutes apart I should come into the hospital to get some antibiotics for my strep (and try to be there 6 hours before birth, really, who can predict that!). I didn't feel that it was quiet time yet but I called anyway and sure enough Dr. told me to come on in. Since it was already 10:30pm, and my mom was going to have to come over to watch Zoe, and my Douala friend was having to drive from Prosperity to meet us...I decided to take it as it is and go on in.

I felt very silly riding in the wheelchair that they make you get in upon arrival. I mean I had walked in there and was planning on walking the baby out, was it really necessary. Protocol he said, though, and quickly went around all the hallways, as I tried not to laugh.
Well, turns out that I had not progressed any from my doctor's appointment earlier that day. They wanted to monitor me more and I had to lay down and wait. So I did, and the contractions lessened in length and intensity. My Douala explained that hospitals can often do that to a person, especially when you have to be still.

After several minutes of waiting, the nurse said I would have to get an IV in order for them to try to get what they needed on the baby heart monitor. How I hated technology, at that point. I had no fear that there was anything wrong but knew that that was, again, their protocol of being careful. However, Shiloh must have heard and gave them exactly what they wanted right after she left the room. Which meant no IV for me and I was free to walk around. So I did for 20 minutes, which brought the contractions back more consistently and strongly. I was so tired in that it was 1 am and felt that I could work at getting her out (and maybe do so) but was sooo worn out already. However, another check and no change. An option to spend the night in the hospital or go home. Really, sleep at the hospital, in this uncomfortable bed, and where would poor Beach no, let's go home. And home we went.
My Douala comforted me in saying that I did the right thing, I did not fail, her own mother (who had 11 children) was sent home with her 10th from having false labor. I just hated to inconvenience her, Beach and my mom with such a late night that would effect their whole next day as well. So I was close, I thought....but not near close enough!

Sunday, February 19, 2012


I'm a planer, how I love a schedule, lists and things to check off as completed!
And how life is so not like this!

As we wait the arrival of our next daughter and my ball of a belly continues to grow, my mind wonders on when she will come. We got caught up on so many details this weekend, thankfully, that I thought that it would be time for her to make her appearance! I'm trying to get rest; Beach is home (which would make things a lot easier); One of my fav. doctors is on call; My friend would be able to come to the birth with her amazing Douala support; My mom has President's day off to help with Zoe; and my due date is only a couple of days away... so doesn't she know all theses wonderful factors? To top it off my body is showing major signs that its close and my Dr. said that she thought she would come least by my due date (Tues!) I keep wondering!
I thought about all those "natural" ways to get birth started. Ways that have been really effective for people and even us when we tried them after Zoe had not appeared a week after her due date. But I was hesitant, not sure about it....some how deep down, despite it making "sense" in my mind to have her this weekend something bigger was there. God's it is so perfect. How, even when we can't understand it, it is so much better than anything we could ever plan out, for reasons we may never know. And how that brings me peace. To know that the Lord of the universe cares for every hair on Shiloh's head and will work out his perfect timing, to rest in such and not have to worry that He is in control. Thank you Lord for your peace! We can't wait to meet you baby girl (whether that be tonight or a couple of weeks from now)....when your ready and when your Abba says it's time!

V-day surprise!

So I've been trying to cram in many things before this new little one comes.....but unfortunately date nights have not been one of them (nor have we had one in quite some time). I feel like there is so much to do to make sure we are ready for Shiloh's arrival and we are getting close that that kind of got placed on the back burner.

Beach and I try not to make a big deal out of holidays and expectations...well at least it has become that way, which is better for us. However, we used to have a tradition of painting pottery at Two Peas in a Pot during their Valentine's day special: a yummy pasta meal, wine, lots of chocolate and a relaxed atmosphere to let the mind create, made for an evening we greatly looked forward to each year. It really beat waiting forever for a table at some restaurant! But sadly they closed a couple of years ago.

Well, this was somewhat of an important day, as it was the day that we started dating 8 years ago (if you don't count our stint in High School that is). I wanted to do something, even on a work night and being 39 weeks pregnant, it pushed me to think. I had a surprise for Beach this year, as I found that another pottery place had recently opened up right near by and were open for the night (and I had a coupon of course)! So I didn't tell him what we were doing and, after stopping in for a quick bite at Moes (we didn't have time for anything else after work and it's one of our fav!), off we went. It was funny trying to hear him guess where he thought we could possibly be headed as he was clueless.

We ended up at the Art Smart Academy in Irmo, which I recommend - and they have a lot of specials throughout the week! We had a good time and after much deliberation finally were able to decide on creating something to hang in Shiloh's room. The owner of the shop taught us a new technique, which was fun and interesting (I will heading there again and be using this one on other pieces!). Poor Zoe ended up with a late night out at Grammy's so that we could complete our masterpiece.
A V-day date night for under 20 bucks....not bad!
After it was fired, we were pretty to figure out where to hang it in her room. There is still much blank wall space left, so that shouldn't be an issue! Happy to have something personalized for her that Beach and I were able to create on a special night together!

Friday, February 10, 2012

New life

It's February!!! The month my sister, Danielle, and I are both due. We squeezed in a hypnobirthing class (that's right...ask me if you want to know more about it!) and watching some birthing videos for the library. Danielle got them in just in time as her little girl came a couple of days early - a week before her due date!!!
Adalyn is here!!! Danielle did so well in being able to have a natural birth in the hospital. So proud of my sis in being able to do so! They seemed to be adjusting really well...what a blessing!
Zoe enjoyed seeing the new baby...the next time we saw her, she went to kiss her head but licked her instead....not sure what that was about :-) but I will go with it was just her way of showing her love!
That means it's almost my turn. My doctor told me with a smile when she left our last appointment that she wished that I could just stay pregnant forever. Hummm....not thinking that is going to work. Well, forever is about to come to an end as Shiloh is getting ready to make her arrival as my body prepares with all theses contractions I am having. I'm feeling a lot more ready for it as the house is coming together and feels more baby ready! Helps my mind and emotions be ready to to meet another child of God that the Lord has chosen my womb to knit together in!

Sunday, February 5, 2012


We had a recent scare when Zoe got bit in the face by a large boxer while visiting our friends. I hadn't been so worried about her that night, as she tends to be pretty gentle with animals and things in general. However, when she made a loud cry/scream, while under the table, accompanied by a loud bark from the dog, my heart sunk. I knew that cry was more than just being scared, it wasn't good. I scooped her crying self up and she rested her head on my shoulder. However when she looked at me she had blood all over her face, especially around her eye. That sent my heart racing and me running to the bathroom. The few times that I have been worried about her in such a way always seems to produce the same response, grab her and run away. I'm sure it is apart of the flight or fight built in us all but not sure what the purpose of my doing so is....except to maybe have her away from everything and allow my own tears to fall (which they seemed to do instantly anyway).

Luckily the bleeding did not last long, but one of the wounds was on her eyelid and looked concerning. Her tears did not last long either, much shorter than mine. She looked at me as I held her, pointed to them falling down my checks and said, "It's okay." The comfort of a toddler. But was it okay? We didn't know, so off to the ER we went.

Luckily it wasn't to late that we could go to one that was smaller near our house. They were great, friendly, excited to see us...not sure if it was Zoe's infectious smile and personality or my big belly hanging out. They gave Zo some crayons and a coloring book. When we sat down at a table to color, she asked to pray. It was so precious and what we needed to do! So we did, right in the middle of the waiting area.
She was a trooper and later found some fun gloves to play with. Turns out that where both of the wounds were at would be able to heal themselves. Although sooooo close to being very serious. I'm so thankful for the Lord's protection in that area and struggle to think of what could have happened in such a close call.

However, I couldn't seem to stop crying that night and even some the next couple of days. At that point, I knew she would be okay but fear shook me to think of how vulnerable life truly is, how much control we really don't have, how I have so little ability to keep this little one that I cherish so much "safe" from the world out there. I trust in the Lord's provision, but also know that that does not guarantee a life without heartache. I know many that have experienced such, and yet God is still sovereign and hold us in His arms regardless. May the words that we sung today at church always, no matter the circumstances resonate deep within. "It is well. It is well. It is well with my soul."