Wednesday, October 28, 2009

God gives us Lemonade

There's a mostly Christian artist named Chris Rice who sings a song "Lemonade" and the chorus goes something like this "Life gave me lemonade and I can't imagine why, born on a sunny day before the clear blue sky, live life without pretending, I'm a sucker for happy endings, thanks for the lemonade..." It's actually a pretty cute love song, but I've always struggled with the "life gave me lemonade" instead of giving God credit for making lemonade out of lemons, I think that's the concept of the lemonade anyway. That's why I say "mostly" Christian artist, because he does a lot of crossover stuff, which I get, you leave the word God out of it and you get more people to listen. Except so many secular country songs talk about God...anyway, I digress.

My whole point being that I feel like I need to make that my heart for today, that there are "lemon moments" in the world, but God has a plan and can use them if I let Him. If for nothing else than to teach me something and bring Him glory, which is a lot.

My "lemons" for today? I managed to roll/sprain my ankle yesterday while walking the dog...thought I was fine until I was at work, and then I hit a point where I could barely walk. Now I've been icing it and keeping it up for the last 14 hours or so, which isn't easy to do while typing...and being frustrated at my clumsiness...
I couldn't make Andy's lunch, I can't play with the dog, I can't walk the dog who's looking at me with huge sad eyes, and I'm just hoping I can make it through six hours of work standing on it. Thank the Lord for ACE bandages! (I'm also leaving out the lemons of having to buy a new curling iron 'cause mine went on the fritz and burning my hip on a cookie sheet...don't ask!)

So I want to feel incredibly sorry for myself, and indeed I do, but somewhere in this I'm sure there's a "Be Still and Know that I Am God" moment...but all I want to do is cry...
Is this the point in pregnancy where I get all emotional? Because I'm feeling it!

I dreamt about our son last night, at age 5 for some odd reason, and he wouldn't tell me "love you mommy"...kind of freaked me out in reality. I think it's because I've had the conference we went to this weekend on my mind. It was "Love and Respect" and I was so moved and convicted about respecting Andy so much better than I do, and acting like it! The speaker's biggest example that stuck out to me was, would you want your son's wife speaking to your baby boy the way you do to your husband? I didn't think about it too much the first time he said it, but then it hit me, we're having a boy, we're having a son! And if I don't teach him how he should be treated by women, with respect and Godliness, he'll 1. resent me, and 2. not have a great marriage... So there's more motivation for building Andy up...not that I needed it, God's good motivation, but this is a biggy too...

So, I'm off to cry a little, and then hope that I can bring some joy into this day for others and enjoy some lemonade!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Yeah Right

So last week we purchased a "training collar" aka shock collar for our wonderful mischievious little dog. It's still in the mail and last night I was having second thoughts about the need for it, he hadn't been too naughty the last few days. Yeah right, maybe because we'd both been home and taking him on hour long hikes every day. As I write this I just rescued my pajamas from his jaws and he's perched on the chair trying to jump up to the table to get the slippers I set there for "safe keeping"...Yeah, he's a good dog alright, who needs some serious obedience training. Maybe it will come today.

In other news, it's kind of hitting me, we're having a baby! Duh, I know, but with every renewed kick in my belly, I'm reminded of God's goodness. It had kind of become normal to be expecting a baby, I had kind of lost the wonder of it, the miracle in it all. More so than the normal miracle of birth. We prayed so long and hard for this baby, we weren't sure God was going to answer that prayer with a yes, and when He did, it was amazing!! I never want to lose the wonder of that. For months I cried and prayed and was stretched beyond any faith I myself had, to come to a point of saying "You are God, I am not" Which is exactly where God wanted me I'd say for sure. I'm not saying it works this way for everyone, but when I had come to the end of myself, for several months mind you, and really said, "okay Lord, whatever you have for us, If you can be best glorified in it being Andy and I forever, then great, not just okay, but praise the Lord! If you are best glorified by us searching your face for years for a child, and then grant that wish, Praise the Lord! If you never grant us a child, Praise the Lord!"
That was when God could use me, and when He gave us a child. It was not immediate, but it did happen.
It's so easy to type those words now that I have a life growing inside of me, but I truly pray that even if I never get to keep this little boy, that I will say that with all my heart, Praise the Lord!
I have been given the privilege for several months of carrying this life and seeking God for the strength to do so every day. I know now that we can have children, and that we have a lot to learn along the way. But I never want to lose the wonder of realizing that God had said "Yes!" And the miracle that is our little boy who is growing every day regardless of what I'm doing, that is God, and His unfathomable love for His children. We don't deserve to have a baby, we don't deserve any goodness from God's hands, we only deserve His wrath, so I treasure this blessing even more. I pray that every kick will remind me of God's love for me, a sinner, but a redeemed child of His, I don't deserve any of it.

I think of being a mother like I now do of being a wife. Beforehand, I had no idea what I was getting into, but I knew this, I was supposed to marry Andrew, He was the one God had for me. He taught me more about the Love of God and the glory of God, and I knew that I could bring God more glory by being married, specifically to Andrew. And I pray that I have. I have learned and grown and been stretched in more ways than I could possibly imagine, and in ways I never would have as a single person. And isn't that the point of marriage? Not for my own benefit or pleasure, but to bring God glory?! Although, to quote John Piper " God is most glorified in us, when we are most satisfied in Him." And I find my satisfaction in serving my God by serving my husband. And it brings God glory.
So I pray that it's the same for motherhood. I'm not a total fool, I know there will be hard days, when I'm so exhausted I can only cry and reach out to the one who made me and this baby, but I know too that I will learn reliance on God in a way I never could have imagined, and I pray I bring Him glory in that.

This video I saw about a month before I got pregnant, and it was the cry of my heart, but it also echoed the hope I had that God was faithful whether than meant having a baby, or not.
I think so many people who have never struggled to conceive don't understand or grasp that utter pain it can bring, or the questions that have no answers. This song portrays that so well.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Maybe it's time to get ready?

We are now the proud owners of a baby's crib. We picked it up Monday through the help of a state/county grant/aid. Since we were looking at used semi-okay cribs before, I'm so thankful to be able to have a brand new crib! No safety hazards here! We are so blessed to have people who tell us about these things and to be able to use these programs. It's a blow to my pride, but that's okay, my pride probably needs a few more blows. The other good news is that with my reduced work hours due to issues with the baby, we now qualify for WIC, so more help with groceries and the 4 gallons of milk we think we need to ingest every week. I was allergic to milk as a kid and people tell me to be careful how much I drink so as to not inflict the same thing on the baby, but seriously, I can't get enough of the stuff!! Maybe I need more calcium, but I am taking a calcium suppliment in addition to all my other vitamins and the milk. Ahh well...

So with the arrival of the crib I've started thinking about the baby's room. People keep telling me or asking me aobut what stuff we have for the baby and what we need, etc... And really, I have no clue!! We own a swing, got a great used but looks new one at a garage sale this summer. Now we have a crib. We have an assortment of clothes from various garage sale's, mother-in-law, and a dear friend who had a son. I'm sure I need some more eventually, but right now, I do have some clothes. I guess some socks for his feet would be good, but that's what footsie clothes are for right? I guess what I'm saying is that because we found out soooo early that we were pregnant I was really careful to not get overexcited and get super prepared. Now with each punch/kick I'm reminded that this baby is happening and we will need everything people keep asking me about. The thing is, I've never had a baby, so how do I really know and understand what we'll need? Strangely enough my chiropractor has become my salvation. She just had a baby last December and is offering us everything to use from her bassinet to bouncy chair to a book about vaccinations (they freak me out!) to making me a list of "essential" baby items that we'll need. Her sister did that for her and she said it was such a great tool to relax and just get what you would actually use. So that gives me some peace of mind.

And then there's the whole issue of decorating the baby's room and picking out sheet colors and blankets, etc...what theme, what color, I don't know! And really, why rush into it? I know, the baby will be here before I know it, but how about getting a little closer to that actual event before I freak out. I think my issue is mostly that I like to overprepare and get my hopes up about things too soon. If we even talk about taking a trip I'm on the internet looking for a motel and researching everything to do in the area. I'm somewhat obsessive compulsive about some things, so I've tried very hard in the last few years to take a deep breath and slow down and just enjoy the process. Now I'm worried that I've gone to the other extreme and become unprepared.

I really do think that after we get through October possibly November that I'll be more "into" getting ready for this baby. I think I just don't want to end up bored and twiddling my thumbs through all of January. Why not use that month of "nesting" to pass the time more quickly? Just a thought I guess. Andy's so laid back about everything that he's definitely not pressuring me. I think I would feel better if I simply understood everything people ask me or that I had a clue about what we are doing with this baby. So if you ask me questions in the future, just remember I've never had a baby, don't know what I'm doing, and basically, I'm okay with that.

Thursday, October 08, 2009

Time for Change

So after lamenting how much I like Fall, let me say this, I like nice falls, this really cold wet one isn't exactly what I meant. Okay, just had to get that off my chest.

In other news, it was time for a change. It seems that after my determination to not get down this Fall, it happened anyway. I think Andy working long hours for two weeks and spending a lot of time alone at home with the dog kind of got to me after a while.

In good news, the dog is behaving slightly better. He still gets aggressive when he wants to play, but now he just gets a "time-out" in the kennel for a few minutes and then he usually calms down. He's also gotten more cuddly and will now cuddle and sleep on your lap rather than in the middle of the floor or the back of the couch. So that certainly makes him more loveable now. Although his renewed desire to sleep on the bed and preferrably right between us is getting slightly annoying and making nighttime interesting.

Andy's now back to his normal schedule so hopefully that will help a little bit too. Although it seems we've gotten busy again or just not using our time greatly so I need to work on quality time with him. I've been so lethargic lately that that is certainly not helping either.
On that note, I'm feeling the need to make some good girlfriends who have time, like to say yes to things, and actually want to spend time with me. That was my lament this week when Andy was working so much. It kind of all piled on at once. I'm so guilty sometimes of just fearing being rejected so therefore not asking to spend time with someone and therefore missing some great friendships and opportunities. Gotta work on that one too.

So all this leads up to the need for a drastic change. So what do I do you ask? Chop off my hair. Nope, not kidding. And I love it. My hair is so thick and when it gets too long it gets so heavy and just gross. Not really, but I think it's gross. So every once in a while, it's time to let it go. And I'm excited, because this is easy and quick and the baby will have less to pull on. Assuming I keep this style until after he's born. So, that's my monumental change for this Fall, Andy likes it, and I'm certainly less frustrated with my hair. Here's the latest baby belly update and the new do.

One other note of sorrow for me. I've been feeling the baby move/kick/hit more and more. Which is great. The sad bit is that Andy doesn't have a ton of patience and or skill and hasn't felt the baby move yet. Which probably wouldn't bother me except for the several friends I have who's husbands felt their babies move before 20 weeks, even 18 or so. Nevermind that I'm almost 24 weeks pregnant and nothing for dad yet. It's just frustrating because I want him to be excited and share in this part. And maybe it would make it more real too. I'm not sure. Anyway, I like my hair.