Thursday, December 1, 2016

Nine Years

Today I celebrate an answered prayer. 

I started to pray for my future spouse at fourteen. That may seem young to you and it was young. 

But from a very young age (obviously)  I dreamed of my prince Charming...to feel those butterflies that all those romantic movies gave me with a real person. 

As I grew older I desperately wanted someone to love me... 

I wanted someone who would take care of me, who loved me for me.

Not what I could give them. 

I wrote about how Josh and I met and you can read all that HERE

Today it has been nine years that I said 'I do' to the Love of my life. 

We had a whirlwind romance and it swept us up and carried us quickly to the alter

Four months actually from our first date we were on our honeymoon. 

I know that there were naysayers, and I know that some had doubts. 

That is okay. 

Because Josh and I knew we were meant to be. We knew God put us together. 

We have went through some really tough stuff. 

We have lost jobs... friends... our babies...

We have been victorious and gained better jobs... our precious son... greater relationships

But here we are on the other side of our trials and joys and we stand strong. 

Through our greatest trials we have clung on to each other and most importantly we have kept God first. 

I pray that my single friends and family find this kind of love that we have. 

But be prepared... fight for it... learn... communicate...compromise

Josh is one my greatest blessings. I love him and he is my best friend... 

He encourages me in all decisions, he works hard to support his family. 

He is gentle but manly all in one. 

I kind of adore him. 

I love his jokes that usually no one gets to hear 
I love the way he pesters me - mostly
I love his bear hugs
I love spirit
I love his commitment to God

He is an amazing daddy. 

And after this year I am not taking anything for granted. 

I really and truly can say that 14 year old girl back in 1999 got her prince Charming...

Happy Anniversary my Love!! oxoxox




Thursday, November 24, 2016

He knew what I needed

Happy Thanksgiving readers wherever you are.

As your reading this I'm celebrating with my family.

I said in my last post that I was working on a post about how God once again let me know "his eye is on the sparrow"

A couple weeks ago I was honored to fill in singing on our worship team. I love each opportunity that God gives me to use the gifts he has given me

Right before service started I stopped to talk to a young lady who often comes to our church. She had brought her newborn niece with her. Instantly I asked if I could hold her.

The moment that little girl was in my arms, something inside me broke. Not necessarily in a bad way but more of a wall grief had come crashing down.

In that instant I knew I wanted a baby again.

I want to hold our baby in my arms and cover her face with kisses.

This overwhelming feeling had me in tears... Struggling not to sob I headed to the stage and worshipped. I sang with all my heart.

After church I told Josh what I felt. We cried and held hands. Talked it out.

We decided that day we want to have another baby.

No matter how that happens. It may through adoption and it may be me becoming pregnant. All we know is that we want to continue this journey and one day give Ethan a sibling.

That day we met my in-laws for dinner at Cracker Barrel. After dinner we headed to the store part. As I'm looking one if the employees was stocking and I was looking these beautiful shirts (wishing I was a little richer)

The employees commented on how beautiful they were and I said something about wishing they were cheaper.

We began a conversation about her wanting to marry a man with money... She had been single for a number of years...that led us to talking about God's perfect timing.

She said that her son that she had given up for adoption found her five or so years ago after searching for her after thirteen years.
With big tears her eyes she looked at me and said, "God always works things out in his perfect timing"

I agreed with her, and said I've learned that many times.

She gave me a big hug, and I told her that we lost our baby and it's been so rough.
She had been there and said

"No matter big or small, 6 weeks to giving birth, that was your baby. He will work it, in his way his timing"

I walked away from that conversation feeling like God was saying "I see you, I hear you, your important to me"

I'm not a second thought to God! I'm important to him, I'm a priority to him.

This Thanksgiving I'm thankful that I'm a mommy to my baby boy. I'm thankful for my husband is such a great man. Dad. Husband.

I'm thankful that I have my grandfather still with us after a very hard year health wise. And thankful for my grandmother who has had to fight along side of him and be the caretaker.

I'm thankful for my parents, my in-laws, my siblings, my aunt's and uncles, cousins...

I'm thankful for my church family

I'm thankful for my readers, your 
comments and messages keep me writing.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone!! ❤❤❤❤


Friday, November 18, 2016

What to say, what to say

Wow, what a crazy couple weeks.

I cannot even begin to tell you how my view of individuals have changed since the dreaded election.

Don't groan or roll your eyes this will not be a political post I have seen too many as you have.

My heart has hurt because of the hate, arguing, division...

Boy oh boy...

That's all I got to say about that... as Forest said.

I want to make a difference. I have been thinking a lot about what that means for me.

I have a college degree and I have passion. A passion to help people.

I have been working on a project that I am really excited about and I hope to be able to get it done... I  will tell let you know when I finish.

I am hoping that something comes of it.

Thanksgiving is next week! I cannot believe that.

We have our first play practice this Sunday and we are putting up our tree afterward.

The plan was to put it up before this, but we moved to the first floor of our apartment building.

For several reasons. But that is for another post. Let's just say some people move into apartments and have a problem with apartment noise.

Moving on...

Josh and I have talked about naming the baby and how to celebrate this little life we were happy to have apart of us, even if it was just for 6 weeks and 1 day.

My heart aches to still be pregnant.

This is a very random post... sorry.

I am working on the post to let you all know who were asking about how we plan to celebrate the baby and where we are going from here ... and to write about what God did for me a couple weeks ago. God knew I needed a little extra something.

Looking forward to celebrating the holidays and eating yummy food!

Here is a little peak at us making new memories and living life in the moment...
I love this man and that little man

I love his cuddles

E and Mommy at the Vday parade

Honoring Gramps for Veterans Day

Mommy and E in the leaves



Love ,

 




Saturday, November 5, 2016

Joy Comes in the Morning

I felt like writing this post because as any one who has walked through grief knows that it is UP and DOWN daily
So today was an UP day for me. 

Friday night was an ugly night. I was having a good day mostly. Very busy. 

I had volunteered at our church's food pantry which I LOVE. I have not been able to because almost everyone in my family works.. so no babysitter. 

Had to pick up my gorgeous niece and nephew from school. 

But I started to get really sad. I had to tell two more people that we had lost our "little Bit" 

Yesterday was two weeks since I had the D and C... it is not like I am trying to focus on dates it is just hard not for that thought of... Tuesday will be three weeks... three weeks since I seen my baby on the ultrasound... and so on. And it was the same with Hope. Those first, the holidays, the milestones. 

So last night I was cooking... and I just broke. Ugly, gut wrenching, bending over crying. Trying to hide it from E. 

My heart was just hurting and I was sad. Then not too long after I felt so sick. Weak, anxiety, stomach hurting... 

I promise I am getting to the happy part of this. 

I have an amazing group of women at my church. They are my dearest friends and my sisters. 

Through this I have felt their prayers and clung to their words of encouragement. 

J and I have really been hurting. 

But today I felt genuine happiness. 

We all planned a surprise for one my sweetest friends (Who by the way is just amazing... I call her my hippie friend... I love you Stacy)


We all surprised her at a local canvas painting class and went to lunch. 

It was hours of pure happiness. I laughed and laughed. Had great (adult) conversation. Spent a great time with my friends. 

It was one of the only times in the last two weeks I felt joyful

It was so needed... 

We may not even know what our presence and smile do for others. Do not get so consumed with your own junk, or get jealous if some one gets a special treat from their friends. Think how can you serve them. How can you help them. 

I posted this picture on facebook...and it has been my profile picture. Because it is such a true statement. And today reminded me how true it is.


Grief changes and it is a passage or journey.

So I am changing my profile picture to this...


Because today my eyes were not swollen from crying, I did not feel "empty", and I smiled. Really smiled from the inside out. 

For that I am so so thankful. 

Remember that scripture I shared last blog... 

For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may stay for the night, but joy comes in the morning - Psalms 30:5

So today there was joy in the morning

All my love, 


Friday, October 28, 2016

And it goes on

"For his anger is but for a moment, and his favor is for a lifetime. Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning." - Psalm 30:5

This scripture is one I've heard many times. And at times one I've clung to.


Sometimes it has helped me in a literal way and sometimes in a figurative way. 


Every night since last Tuesday I have went to sleep with the hope that the next day would be better than the day before. 


Over the last ten days some mornings have been better, some days have been hard. 


Some days I am okay, only tear up a few times. Some days I cry my eyes out while I do simple things. 


Some mornings I look in the mirror and don't give my changed body a second thought. Then there are those moments I feel like my body has betrayed me. 


My breast are back  to normal, my baby bump gone, no more little flutters... that glow you just seem to have when pregnant is gone and replaced with puffy eyes and a sad expression. 


All with in a months time I found out I was pregnant and lost Little Bit before we were able to hear its precious heart beat. 


Frankly, I get really frustrated easy. I know the root is the unfairness of having to suffer this a second time. 


Unfortunately I am a fixer. So I spend energy trying to unpack my apartment or work on a project. Reading. Anything to fix my heart. 


But the thing about grief is there is no "fix" 


You cannot go around, over, under, around... you have to walk right through this painful valley of grief. 


Loss is not easy, and I feel like sometimes I am drowning. 


I am clinging to the knowledge that my family and friends are praying for me. 


A week ago today I had my D and C.


I HATE typing that. It really makes me feel angry and want to go punch something (I think I maybe in the anger phase of grief) 


My Dr. was pleased with how well everything went. She does not think that there is anything major going on , but is leaving it up to me to do further testing. 


I am just not there right now. 


Right now I want not to be sad, right now I want to see Ethan's baby things and not remember Josh and I talking about what we were keeping for this baby. 


I don't want to see my husband hurting and upset. Or remember the look on his face when I told him why the ultrasound was going to get the Dr. 


I want to be pregnant with our little baby. 


Grief is so ugly... so maybe you think I should not share so much....or wonder why I do? 


I will tell you. 


Isolation is the enemy's favorite weapon. He comes to steal kill and destroy. 


Frankly I have been down that road. When we lost Hope I was lost in the deep depression and lonely walk of grief. 


I have shared about my choice one day to live. Live for what I had been blessed with. 


So everyday, sometimes moment to moment I choose to live. Live for my son. Live for my husband. Live for my self. But most important and as unhappy I am with having to go through losing another baby... I choose to live for God. 


I do not understand why I am going through this again. I wish it was not happening. 


I know if I am going to heal and be joyful, and continue to breathe... I need God. 


To be completely honest my heart is hurting.


I will be okay.


I will make it through this.


Maybe no one wants to read my story and maybe I am only writing to help me process everything... but this blog is here for a reason.


I hope in the near future you will see a happier post, but if you have been reading my blog for any length of time you know that I cannot just pretend. This is me. This is real.


All my love,


Tuesday, October 18, 2016

I did not want to write this...again

I had been keeping a secret from most people that I do not see on a regular basis.

On September 23 I took a pregnancy test and it was positive. I was so excited, scared, shocked.All sorts of emotions.






We took video of sharing our news with our parents. I was bursting to tell everyone.

But something inside told me to wait. So I did not make an announcement on here or Facebook.

I went to my first ultrasound on September 29 I went in and I was still pretty early (6w1d) and they wanted to see me in two weeks.

So we shared with a few people, asked them to pray.
Saturday 10/15 my birthday

My body started changing rather quickly and this made me excited.












So today was the day... to see our baby get an official due date and hear our babies heartbeat. 

As soon as I seen the sac, I knew. 

The baby looked the same size, the sac was only a little bigger. 

I felt a rush of anxiousness. 

I knew, I just knew. 

Josh sat there held my hand. 

We both were in shock. 

Our "Little Bit" was gone

I just don't have words to say, and right now I am just wanting this next week to be over with. 

So we now have two precious ones in Heaven waiting. 

I don't have answers, and I don't understand. 

I have these pictures to remember our baby by

I am Angry. Disgusted. Sad. Anxious. All emotions that were covered at the workshops that were at a Women's Retreat I went on two weeks ago. 

That retreat brought healing and freedom to me. I do not want to lose that. I am not the same woman I was four years ago. And I know that no one grieves the same way... 

I am not sure what this journey will bring. But I do know I don't want to stay here. I don't want to return to that dark dark place. 


It is ironic how I just wrote about making a choice to live or die in these places of anguish and hurt? 


I do not think it was any coincidence that I wrote that just a few days ago... I wrote it for me. I was going to the woman that read that post. Because I needed to be reminded. I have choice. 

Yes, your right I have Ethan. You better believe when I seen him today after the Dr. I held him and I cried. I held him so tight. 

I was reminded today that he is my living, breathing, walking miracle. 

No, I don't know if I will try again...no I don't know what the cause was. Right now I can not make those decisions or finish those thoughts. 

All I know is my stomach is sick, and my heart hurts. I want to run away from this and not have to face it. 

Please pray for us. Because right now Josh and I need it. This is hard. Tough. Sad. Unfair. 

I don't know what else to add... besides I know I will be okay. I know even though I am confused and can not see the future or why I am going through this... but God is with me. He has been preparing me for this through small things. I know his presence is with me.

Even through this I will proclaim him faithful. 

Lamentations 3:22-23 The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases;  his mercies never come to an end; they are new  every morning; great is your faithfulness.

I will have a D & C sometime this week/early next week. So please pray that all goes well, I've only had one major medical procedure and that was my Cesarean. 








Friday, October 14, 2016

HOPE

*Sigh* I just have to write this out. Get it out. We moved recently and as I was unpacking I looked at the shelf my mom had helped unpack and it had all of our Hope  knickknacks (Most of them came from our first balloon release, we decorated the table with them) .

As I looked at the shelf I was overwhelmed by grief, and the feeling of loss. All these thoughts rushed my mind. Hope would be 4. The memories of that awful night, to pushing through each Mother's day...with my heart ripping out.

I just cried. Cried hard.

My heart felt wounded all over again. And I missed our baby more than I have in a long time.

I've never forgot Hope, but with time and life rushing by the grief and sense of loss is not so fresh.

Your opened wound becomes a scar. A scar that sometimes aches.

Over the week I have seen people sharing their loss in honor of October being Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness month, and tomorrow the 15th being the Pregnancy and Infant Loss awareness day.

1 in 4 women share the same scar I have.

Each of us have a story. Some of us were able to have our rainbow babies, some never did. Some clung to the children they had already been blessed with. Some delivered their babies, but did not get to take them home.

No matter the story we all share a loss... a loss of a dream we once had. You grieve your baby. No matter size from weeks to infant. It is a traumatic loss.

When I had Ethan, God healed my heart. He gave me my miracle that I thought I would never have.

Remembering all of our babies, we love you and miss you
I never thought my story would help others, it did not occur to me on May 15, 2012 that God was building a testimony.

But he was and is still doing.

I wrote before how I had a choice, a choice to stay in my pit of despair, anger, depression, grief...or I could choose  to live. To really live.

I chose to live, and to share my story.

My heart breaks for my friends and any woman who is suffering from infertility... not only infertility but loss. Oh that pain that you feel.

That journey can be a lonely and dark one.

or

You could make the choice (not an easy one) to live.

It was not easy. I won't pretend that it was a short journey to find my freedom. But it came.

I started to be a better wife, friend, and woman of God.

God does not expect us not to hurt from what we went through. Those scars are meant for us to draw from so that we are able to help others.

To use our testimony to give others hope, encouragement, and for them to know "You are not alone"

No, I have not forgot about my precious little one that got to be with Jesus before me...but I will use her short life to reach others for the Glory of God.

I love you, yes you, the one who is crying with me reading this. I am sorry you are hurting. And I am praying for you.




OXOX, Lauren




News Interview

Hope's Balloon Release #1

Hope's Balloon Release #2