Thursday, November 14, 2013

A Lot to Be Thankful For

A lot of negativity has been floating around in my head lately.  A lot of sadness and self deprecating thoughts.  I honestly don't know how to make them stop or go away.

So I figured an ongoing list of blessings would be a good place to start.  For as many times as the bad things and hard times get me down and make me sad, God has truly been good to us.


I am THANKFUL for (in no particular order);
~ The love and grace of God the father and the redemption through Jesus Christ.   I sin daily.  I don't always ask for forgiveness, but I'm learning to do just that.  I'm learning to love like Jesus did/does.  I'm learning grace.  It will forever be an ongoing process.

~ My husband of 11 years.  He has been such an amazing partner through this last year. I've seen him beaten down by sadness and yet he still picks ME up.  I've seen him grow in the LORD and in godly wisdom and it makes my heart swell.

~ My children.  God has blessed me with five AMAZING children here on earth and three that we will meet in heaven.  I am thankful for their questions, for their eagerness to learn and their soft tender hearts.  I am thankful, too, for their disobedience as it allows me to be changed.  A sweet friend calls children 'little sanctifiers'.  Oh man, is it ever true.

~ A house to live in.  It might not be ours, it might not be perfect, but it's a lot more than others have. It keeps up warm (kinda) and protected from the elements of good ole MinneSNOWta.  It's big enough to have others gather in our home, which means so VERY much to me.

~ Friends.  They are our family.  They have seen us through some downright dreadful things happen to us this past year and we COULD NOT have made it through it without them.

~ Our church family.   Our church has rallied around is this last year.  We've met some phenomenal people who have helped us to grow, who have prayed for us, who have provided meals for us...the list goes on and on.  We even have some wonderfully sweet people driving us to an from church and Wednesday night activities as our transmission is out on our truck. 

~ A running/working vehicle.  Even if it is just one and even if that one won't fit the whole family.  One is better than none, right?  It still gets Todd to and from work.  We're able to run our errands and get half the crew to church on Sunday.

~ Good health.  Aside from little viruses, we are all in good health.  Well, that doesn't count Todd's back issues, but THAT is a work in progess.

~ Todd's job.  It isn't fancy but it pays the bills and put food on the table.  Todd works hard and provides for his family.  I am so proud of him.

~ Young Living Oils.  These oils have made the grief process tolerable/manageable.  They have cut cold times down to a minimum, tamed Aspergers tantrums, shrunken Todd's heel spur, relieved pain in his ankles and back, soothed burns, cut out coughs, stopped grumbly tummies, gotten me off of prescription anti-depressants, allowed me to relax and sleep.  Oh man, the list goes on. 

~ Truth and honesty.  It takes a real friend to lovingly tell you what you need to work on and what you need to cut out.  It takes a real friend to pray you through your hard times.  

~ The bible.  So much wisdom and love is within it's texts. 

~ Family.  As hard as this one is for me, there are a *few* people in our families who truly love us and wish the best for us, without conditions.  I have come to learn that family doesn't always mean blood, and I will leave it at that.



Monday, October 28, 2013

Though You Ruin Me

I've been trying to figure out what God is wanting me to learn through this last year.  What on EARTH is going ON?!?!? 

It has all felt so meaningless.  So miserable.  SO HURTFUL!!!

Why would someone who loves me continue to tear me apart? 

I may never have that complete answer.  What I do know, is that He's changing me. 

Romans 5:2-5

English Standard Version (ESV)
2 ...and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.

Hope.  There is hope. Right?  How do I feel it?  When does it come?  I will be able to rejoice in my sufferings.....

Okay, so God is refining me.  He's producing character.  He's producing hope.

What I know is that my God has suffered.  He sent HIS son to die for sins I haven't even committed yet!!  I know He's cried tears of pain.  He knows. 

He Knows.

A friend sent me a link to a youtube video which has been AMAZING for my heart.  It's a song by Shane & Shane called "Though You Slay Me".  It features John Piper.  His message shoots me through the heart.  PLEASE take a few minutes to watch it. 




Seriously.  Watch it....

I come, God, I come
I return to the Lord
The one who's broken
The one who's torn me apart
You struck down to bind me up
You say You do it all in love
That I might know You in Your suffering

Though You slay me
Yet I will praise You
Though You take from me
I will bless Your name
Though You ruin me
Still I will worship
Sing a song to the one who's all I need


This has last year has been a TOUGH year.  Lots of unknowns.  Lots of ups and downs.  Clinging to His word.  His hope.  What else is there? 

October 26th was the one year mark for miscarrying our first twin.
November 25th was the day I delivered our second twin, leaving my womb empty.  ACHING. 
November 27th was Solomon's due date.

Please, friends, will you pray for us?  Pray that we can see and feel this hope.  Pray that we can see the SONshine through the rain.  Pray that we can glorify God through all of this.  Pray that we are open and accepting of His will for our lives.  'Cause I'll be honest, *I* feel as though I'm failing.  Miserably.

I know I'm a broken record sometimes, but I need to process a lot of this still.  There are 5 women, whom I know personally and call friend, that are having babies in the next few weeks.  One just had hers this past weekend.  Add several more facebook friends to that list.  Some I met on birth boards from previous pregnancies, and some from the November 2013 group.  Can you pray that jealousy will not enter my heart?  Can you pray for courage to congratulate these friends?  Can you pray for the smallest mending of my heart? 

I am stuck and need strength.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

This Is Our Son

I struggle with wanting people to understand my pain and my fear that has come with our losses.  I might just ALWAYS struggle with that. 

Many times I have wanted to share his picture, the only one we have.  Out of fear of what they might say and for fear of rejection, I don't.  Only a few people have been willing to see it. 

So I figured I would share it here, openly.  If you want to see my son, scroll through.  If you feel it would be too much for you, close this post and there will be no hard feelings. 

**Loss mommies, this might be a trigger....

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Solomon Joseph went to be with Jesus at 16 weeks gestation

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This is our son.
This is why I weep. 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

In Memory

Today was the memorial for babies lost in the last six months.  There were a lot of people there.  Far too many people who are hurting.

Lord, be with them. 

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

?

Tomorrow is the memorial service that our hospital puts on for babies lost within the last 6 months. My husband and I will be going. I've found myself an emotional wreck the last few days; the tears come freely and without end.

Aunt Flo came today on CD 25. Last month my cycle was only 19 days long. My body is so messed up it doesn't know what's going on anymore. I've had all sorts of bloodwork done, including a sonohystogram, and everything appears normal.

I know at this point that having a baby will not 'fix' me or make things better. I'm missing three babies. There is no fixing that.

I'm terrified of becoming pregnant again, though. I'm terrified to go through all of this again. I don't know if my heart could take it.

The feeling of emptiness is so overwhelming at times. I've got so many friends who are due in the next 8 weeks it's just unfair. How many times do I have to tell people that I'm SUPER happy for them, I'm just so. incredibly. sad. for me?

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Difficult Days

I stumbled upon this post via pinterest and has some AMAZING points on helping parents through some difficult days after miscarriage.  It's a very quick read and will truly help you understand the pain parents go through. 

http://www.lindsey-bell.com/2013/06/difficult-days-for-miscarriage-survivors.html?m=1

I can tell you that points 1, 2 and 3 were especially hard for me the beginning of this year.  Almost unbearable even though I was expecting again. Number 5 was so true.  Todd even said he felt I wasn't excited about my pregnancy at all.  I was numb and I was trying to protect myself emotionally.  Number 6 is more true than I'd like it to be, but I rejoice in their blessings. 

This is not something I'd ever wish upon anyone.  EVER.  I really do hope there will be more understanding in the future. 

Dear Lord


Friday, July 19, 2013

It's Been Two Weeks


As she walks on the city streets with a broken heart and tear stained cheeks
Holding on to the hope that someone’s listening
She looks to the stars above as they barely shine thru the evening fog
Takes her mind of the fact that she’s stopped breathing

And she thinks back to the days before hope had slipped away
To a time when life was still worth living
Like the thief who called out his name
Will you please remember me
She is crying out Jesus save me

So I raise my hands and call out on your name
My heart is yours and I’ll never be the same
Does your grace still save or am I on my own
I hear you say
You’re never too far never too far gone never too far gone
I hear you say you’re never too far gone

So I raise my hands and call out on your name
My heart is yours and I’ll never be the same
Does your grace still save or am I on my own
I hear you say
You’re never too far never too far gone never too far gone
I hear you say you’re never too far gone

You’re never too far gone



Tuesday, July 16, 2013

How Do I Move Forward?

This question has been on my mind an awful lot lately.  How does one simply accept what happened and move on?  The pain of what should have been and what won't be are inescapably overwhelming.

Back in January, I shared that God had changed my heart.  That I was open to whatever he chose our family size to be.  After all, if He gave us the surprise pregnancy of twins, he wants our family to grow, right?  That becoming pregnant with Solomon was his will, too?  That the desire to have my womb filled with life again was given to me by God himself? 

I am just so confused as to how God is working this all out.  One loss, I understand.  Losing both twins, I understand that, too.  Losing a third baby is just a bit more than I can handle. 

So now we pray, AGAIN, for God's will in our lives.  I pray that he will give us direction. 

At night, I pray through my tears for answers.  Almost every time I feel God interrupting me with just two words: TRUST ME!

As I sit here typing I'm experiencing 'phantom kicks' which are a terrible reminder.  For a brief moment I get excited thinking I feel a little person in me.  Then reality kicks in and the harsh reality of what happened in brought back.  I feel empty.  I feel useless.  I feel alone. 

What does this TRUST feel like?  What does it look like?  What do I DO now?

Each day I do my best to pour my love into the blessings we have earth side.  I hug them as much as I can and let them know that they are loved.  That they are precious and we are SO thankful for them. 

Even with those precious reminders of how blessed we truly are, I still. feel. stuck.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

One Week Later: July 10th

It still feels like a dream.  A nightmare. I knew that the possibility was there.  I never let myself get too attached.  I didn't really believe I was pregnant.

I don't know if I ever felt movement, but I knew I was pregnant.  The pregnancy tests and the ultrasounds proved it.

6 weeks
11 weeks
I was excited to share a due date month with many friends; from church, our homeschool group and online friends I had met in previous birth groups.  It was starting to feel real.  I was getting a bump, had crazy nasty heartburn and had cravings that Todd couldn't keep up with.  I was up at night to pee, had a hard time sleeping, all those wonderful, joyous parts of having a living, growing being within you.  Marvelous.

July 3rd brought 19 weeks and the *BIG* anatomy scan.  So thankful that Todd was able to go with me. 

We got to the center early.  We were both incredibly nervous.

When we were called back to the room, I noticed the tech was new.  So new, she was still being trained in.  Thankfully, the tech monitoring her was one I was very familiar with.  She found a twin last time and was the one to tell us it wasn't living.  She also did several other scans for us, both last time and this pregnancy.  I was so happy to see her. 

I laid down, the newbie tech started scanning, and was having a hard time.  The other tech, I'll call her 'M', said "frequency is your friend."  I thought it was cute, but I knew it wasn't good.  As soon as that wand hit the belly, it should have showed something.  So M took over.  She moved the screen away from Todd and I, and was pressing rather hard.  She had to move the head of the bed down, and I just knew.

I just knew...

"I'm so sorry" is what we were told.  It happened again.  I sobbed.  Todd sobbed.

It happened again.

I asked M to see if she could tell the sex and she couldn't.  I asked her to measure baby as best as she could, and the measurements came out to around 16 weeks. That means baby had been dead, inside me again, for three weeks.  Three weeks.  No wonder I didn't feel movement...

We got to see our baby and she was able to get a picture printed out for us.

Head is tucked in, hands are by the face and legs are curled up in the fetal position.

I got up, and immediately felt like I was going to pass out.  I couldn't take it. After getting myself together, I knew what had to be done.

See, we were planning to do a gender reveal with the kids.  They were so excited to be adding to our family.  The boys were, obviously, hoping for a brother and the girls were hoping for a sister.  Natalie had even said several prayers asking God for it to be a girl.  So cute. Needless to say, going home and telling them was hard.

They took it well.  Much better than last time.  I think it's still sinking in, though.  I don't know that the older kids really thought it was going to happen this time.

Todd and I knew what we had to do.  I messaged my midwife, who was on her way to Tennessee to visit family for the 4th Of July.  She called the local clinic and talked with someone about having us at the hospital for a delivery.  Our dear friends were willing to watch our kids, so they were covered.  We snuggled our kids, packed our bag (something we knew we needed to do after last time) and headed to the hospital. 

Because I was being seen for a home birth, I had no reason to register at the hospital.  Never mind that I was not far enough in gestation for it to be a viable birth, I needed to register at the Family Birthing Center.  Name and birth date given to the woman at the desk; primary care physician, OB (or in my case, midwife) and reason for admittance (induction). 

She obviously didn't see my belly, nor did she have my files to see how far along I was.  She took out a sheet of paper from her filing cabinet and said "this is a release for your baby."  I about died.  My heart was already broken and I have to go through this?  I told her this was an induction for a loss, to which she said, "so there will be no baby?"  No.  There will be no baby for me to take home.  Again.

We make our way from the registration area to the desk in the FBC.  They still had not received any information from my provider, so they put me in the first room available.  One of the closest rooms to the door.  You know, the door that everyone goes through to visit their family members who just had a baby.  Yeah.  You get the picture.  Joyous talk.  Kids skipping up and down the hallways.  All things you'd expect when you're going to see someone and their beautiful new baby.

Our nurse was fabulous.  Super sweet and tender.  She happened to be part of the bereavement support group through the hospital.  Just the right person to have on board. 

My first dose of cytotec, used to ripen the cervix and aide in dilation, was at 10pm.  A lot later than we had hoped.  We knew this process could take a while.  The OB even said he's seen it take a couple of days.  Last November, it took one dose of cytotec and roughly 5 hours.  That time, however, my body had already started the miscarriage process.  This time, I was closed and tight. 

I was moved to a room that was much further away from the entrance.  It happened to be the biggest room the FBC had. I would say a good 40-50% of the room was windows.  We had a fabulous view of the Mississippi river.  Well, from what we could see that late at night, anyhow.  You can see the room on the video here if you really want to. 

Over the course of the night, I was given a 50mcg dose of cytotec every four hours.  Lots of peeing at night due to the IV, so very little sleep was happening.  We knew exactly how everything would go, so the fear wasn't as bad this time around.  Maybe that part was a bit easier on the nurses?  Not having to deal with crazy emotions all night long? 

Morning came.  I watched the sun rise over the Mississippi.  It was so beautiful.  Majestic. Almost beautiful enough for me to forget what was going on.  Almost.

Around 11am I got up to use the bathroom and my water broke.  This is the second time it's happened spontaneously.  The first time it was for my first miscarriage.  ::sigh::  The fluid was a light brown which was indicative of a loss. 

The day was slow.  Todd got in a bite to eat, my great aunt stopped by for a visit with flowers and cookies and we received lots of phone calls.

Later in the evening, I was informed by the nurse that I had received my max dosage of cytotec.  Being a VBA2C patient, that was about it.  However, the OB on call had done some research and was *comfortable* giving me up to 200mcg doses of cytotec to get me moving along.  I knew the risk of rupture was there, but I was being monitored and I felt comfortable with it, so we did another dose. 

We had friends stop in around this time.  I knew Todd needed someone other than me and our nurses to talk to.  It was nice to have them there.  Unfortunately for them, they're a bit queasy, so when the anesthesiologist came in to do the epidural (I didn't need to be a hero), they NEEDED to leave. 

After the epi was placed, I got to wear the lovely blood pressure cuff and heart monitor.  The nurse was nice enough to turn my bed around so I could see the fireworks as they were being shot off of a barge on the river. It was really nice to be able to watch.  Our kids were just across the river being cared for by other friends of ours.  I was sad we couldn't be with them.  I was thankful to see the fireworks celebrating our freedom.  I was crushed knowing what was to come.

After the fireworks display, I was starting to itch like crazy thanks to the epidural.  Benadryl was given to counteract the epidural.  I became VERY lethargic.  I tried to talk to our friends who made it back up after the fireworks, but my brain was moving much faster than my lips, making me very entertaining to listen to.  I heard the three of them cracking up a few times.  Unfortunately, the benadryl made me so lethargic/sleepy, that my blood pressure went REALLY low.  So every 15 minutes, when the cuff went off to take my bp, it would beep because it was so low.  Call in the nurse for a retake, bp is fine, start the whole process over again.  It seemed like it was ALL NIGHT LONG.

7am on the 5th came another shift change, the fourth nurse change.  We had the same two nurses the entire time except check in.  They were both fabulous.  So gentle and understanding.  I was too afraid at this point to pee in the toilet, knowing that things were moving along and baby could come at any time.  The nurse offered a bed pan to pee in.  I felt bad for her, but happy baby wouldn't be delivered in the toilet. 

Around 9:30, she did a cervical check and noticed I was almost there.  She did another check a minute later, and found baby.  She had baby in her hand and called for the OB.  Once the OB was in, she put baby in his hand.  He clipped the cord and immediately noticed the cord was thing and stringy.  The intern then grabbed baby laid the body in a container on the table.  My heart was broken. I was angry at where they put my baby.  Sterile.  Cold. 

I asked to hold our baby.  Our wonderful nursed grabbed a hand knit blanket, scooped baby up and let us have our time.  She did check for us and saw we had a boy.  She asked if we had a name for him. 

Solomon Joseph.  Our son.

I had picked out a name for a boy and a girl before we had even conceived.  Solomon means 'wise' and Joseph means 'God will expand'.  Guess He just wanted to expand our heavenly family.  Again.

Todd and I both took our turns holding him...going over all his features.  They were so tiny.  So beautiful.  Just too small.  We examined his cord and it was so thin.  So thin and VERY twisted.  The doctor was fairly confident that this was the reason he passed away.  Solomon just didn't get what he needed through the cord and it couldn't sustain him. 

A fluke.  Something that shouldn't happen, but did.  Something that could happen to ANYONE.  

Our nurse said she'd like to take him to get footprints and measurements.  She asked if we would like him back when she was done.  Todd and I looked at each other, asking the silent question "do we?"  This was our sweet, precious son, but it was just his shell.  Just his body.  He had been with Jesus for three weeks already.  So we let her take him after Todd took a picture. 

We cried and held each other.  It wasn't fair.  How could this happen?  Why would God allow this to happen AGAIN?  AGAIN!?!?!

A bit after another dose of cytotec, the OB was able to work the placenta out.  It came out intact which was good.  I avoided another D&C.  We okayed chromosome testing on baby to see if we could find any other answers.  I also had blood work done, six vials worth, to see if anything on my end caused this and if anything could be prevented in the future.

I don't remember time at this point.  It was a few hours later, and the nurse came in to give me a RhoGham shot.  She then stopped the epidural drip and removed my IV.  Todd and I stared blankly at each other.  I felt like it was all my fault and apologized to him many times over.  Deep down I *know* it's not my fault, but after failing to keep THREE babies alive in my womb, how else should I feel?

Two friends came by with a sweet gift and a sandwich for Todd.  It was nice to have a distraction.  It was wonderful to have friends pray over us.

After they left, the nurse brought in our box.  ANOTHER box

Our nurse, and another nurse whom I actually went to high school with, put together this scrapbook page.  It will be framed and hung on our bedroom wall
Solomon was over an ounce heavier and was two inches longer than our Chelsea, lost at 13 weeks. What a difference three weeks in the womb makes.
His footprints, measurement and a lovely blanket made for us by a local crafting group.  So thankful for those women.
This time, with our baby being a bit bigger, we were given a hat.  Solomon wore it for a bit.  I will treasure it.

We wanted to increase our family.   We felt our family was incomplete.  All we wanted was a 'take home' baby this time.

Instead, we went home with another box.



Sunday, June 30, 2013

Actions speak loudly


Lots of self examination has been happening lately, and examination of other relationships as well.  Not only does pain change the person going through it, but others around them as well. 

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

July 3rd can't come fast enough

We have our anatomy scan scheduled for Next Wednesday, July 3rd.  I haven't felt much movement, so I'm REALLY anticipating that appointment.  We're also excited to find out what we're having.  No, we're not waiting this time. 

I set up a widget on the right for you to vote - boy or girl?  I can tell you right now, I haven't had any real thoughts one way or another.  No weird dreams, either.  Nothing to really hint at baby's sex AT ALL!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Quilting progress

Only three rows quilted so far out of 21.  Then to do the borders, cut it down and do the edging.  This is the twin size.  I have yet to do the full.  :/

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Cravings

I think I saw at least three people post about their cinnamon rolls and it got this prego hungry. 

Fresh from the oven...

Saturday, June 8, 2013

First Belly Pic

Yes, there's a lot of fluff there, but the belly *is* growing.  15 weeks 3 days. 

Friday, June 7, 2013

That's All

The only concrete evidence I have that my first twin existed are the results of my ultrasound 10/11/12.  I don't know why I felt compelled to look at them again, but I did. 


INTERPRETATION:
Within the uterus there appears to be a single gestational sac.  A yolk sac is identified.  There is a fetal pole within with an adjacent smaller solid structure as well.  This raises the question of a twin pregnancy with fetal demise of one of the two.  The largest structure with cardiac activity at 195 beats per minute labeled twin A with a mean crown-rump length of 30 mm corresponding to 9 weeks and 6 days.

The smaller structure labeled twin B is 19 mm corresponding with gestational age of 8 weeks and 3 days.  No activity.

The patient's uterus is retroverted.

CONCLUSION:
1. Single living pregnancy identified within the uterus based on the mean crown-rump length is at 9 weeks 6 days with an EDC 05/10/2013.
2. Within this same sac, is a second more difficult to see structure that would raise the question of a twin pregnancy.  This would correspond to 8 weeks and 3 days.  No cardiac activity is identified within.  This raises the question of demise of a twin.


This is all there is.  No ultrasound photo.  Just words. 

I had another scan on November 1.  This was just 6 days after miscarrying the first twin.

2. The previous anatomic findings raising suspicion for a twin pregnancy with demise is no longer seen.  There is a septation however.  This may represent further resorption of a previous demise. 


I don't think of it often, but when I do, it hurts. 

Retro

Austin saw this bike at our Church's garage sale and was hoping to buy it.  On the last day of the sale, he made an offer of $10 (the last in his piggy bank) and the bike was his.

He wants to spray paint it.  I said absolutely not.  I think all of the kids will good some good use out of this bike.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

First Purchase For Baby

I was hesitant to purchase anything because I didn't want to 'jinx' the pregnancy, but I couldn't resist.  Crazy 8 was having a great sale!

We have a shirt for Ian that says 'Lil' Bro' and thought the new shirt would come in handy this winter.   ;-)
This past Wednesday marked the 15 week mark for me.  We lost our second twin at 15 weeks 6 days.  Hoping the next few days fly by and our little sweet pea hangs on.

At this point, I'm feeling pretty good.  No huge complaints other than lack of sleep and crazy mad heartburn that leads to esophageal spasms.   Otherwise, the morning sickness is pretty much gone!  Yay!

Just a few more weeks until the big ultrasound.  We can't wait!

Saturday, June 1, 2013

New Project

As if I didn't have enough to do.  I figured I'd better get some sewing done before all the swelling starts.
The fabric is cut and I've got a few pieces sewn together.  I'm making quilts for the girls' beds.  They are SO excited!!

Monday, May 13, 2013

From the Box

With today being my due date for my twins, I thought I'd share a bit from the box that I was sent home with.  They help to me remember that my babies were real.  There is still heart ache in these things for me.

A small fleece blanket with a crocheted edging and a rattle sheep 

Todd and I snuggled with these after we got home from the hospital. It was hard being home and recovering without having a baby in my arms.  These two items brought us a bit of comfort.

Small foot prints and a crib card

The baby wasn't developed enough to tell the sex, so we were told to go with whatever was in our hearts.  I cannot tell you how terribly difficult that was.

Beautiful footprints just over a centimeter in size

The nurse had said she wasn't sure if she'd get footprints, as our baby had already started to decompose (sorry, it's true).  So thankful for these two squishy little prints.  It proves that our baby was here and was real.

Yesterday, Mother's Day, was especially hard for me.  I felt lonely and my heart ached for my babies. 

Being pregnant surely doesn't take away the pain from my losses.  In fact, every little pain and twinge gets my stomach in a knot, wondering if it's going to happen again. 

I have detached myself from this pregnancy quite a bit.  I fear that any happiness will be stripped away like last time.  I don't know when or IF that will change. 

Todd was sweet and remembered this day would be hard for me.


A wonderful delivery of white lilies this morning

My husband knows how important symbolism is to me.  Lilies are my favorite.

White means life...

I can never go back to before my losses.  My heart has forever been changed.  I pray for God's protection over this little life inside me and pray it's His will for it to grow and make it to my arms.  I don't know what else there is.  


Sunday, May 12, 2013

Bittersweet

EDD with my twins:  05/13/13
Miscarriage of twin A:  10/26/12
Miscarriage and delivery of twin B:  11/25/2012
EDD of baby Bergren #8:  11/27/2013




Monday, April 29, 2013

Family Force 5!


A little bit of background before I get into details.  :)

Our WHOLE family absolutely loves Family Force 5.  Even Ian (2) gets into their music.  For weeks, all he would want to do is watch their Wobble video on youtube.  After Wobble, it was Cray Button.  After Cray Button, it was the MAKING of Cray Button.  Ian will STILL walk around, grunt, and say "doo doo" just like Crouton. 

Who is Crouton, you might ask and what kind of NAME *is* that?  Well, they explained it like this;  in Atlanta, you have a ton of rappers with their 'gangsta' names.  So they decided to come up with their own. 

Solomon Olds - Soul Glow Activatur - Lead Singer/Guitar
Jacob Olds - Crouton - Drummer/Vocals
Joshua Olds - Fatty - Bass Guitar/Vocals
Derek Mount - Chapstique - Lead Guitar
Nathan Currin - Nadaddy - Keytar/Rhythm

Okay, now that you have the background, lets move on.

When we heard they were coming to St Cloud, we bought tickets the same day.  VIP tickets at that which included a meet and greet with the band!  We purchased Austin (11) a ticket as his birthday present.  He's been thinking about this day for quite some time.  He's talked about playing drums for Crouton ever since.

The concert was last night.  We left the four other kidlets with trusted sitters, grabbed the tickets and headed out.



Yep, VIP baby.  We were able to meet the band and have them sign a few things.  It was kinda rushed, but hey, it was still cool. 

From left to right, the band members are Fatty, Nadaddy, Soul Glow Activator, Chapstique and Crouton.  See the HUGE grin on Austin's face?

From there we headed to the merch table.  Yes, had to get some goodies!  Three t-shirts and two ZOMBIE bracelets.  We had to get a little something for Nate. 

Austin was bummed that he didn't ask Crouton if he could play drums for him.  I said we could certainly get in line again and ask.  So we did.  He was rather nervous, but I told him the worst that could happen was he would say no.  But you know what, he was cool with it!!


On Crouton's custom kit. See the III on the snare and the FF5 symbol on the kick?  Pretty sweet!
video 
 For the record, I asked before I took the video.  ;)

Crouton was VERY supportive and said Austin did a great job.  I know Austin was nervous and holding back a little, but he still did awesome.  Crouton also gave him a few suggestions.  He said Austin could use anything around him to make beats, since he doesn't have his own set yet, like pillows and boxes.  We really appreciate the time he took to talk to him and us.  What a nice guy!  (do you see that my son got to play drums for a rock star?!)

From there it was time for the general admission to come on in.  We stood around and talked with some friends from church that were there.  Then, our good friends Kyle and Holly came in with their kids and nephews.  We also ran into a few lovely young ladies from our church.  Their dad was running video for the concert.  Super cool gig!

The awesome group of kids that went to the concert.  Love these guys!

Silverline was up first.  They're a group from MN.  I was incredibly impressed with their sound and stage performance.  That's saying something, as I've never really been impressed with an opening act.  Their drummer caught our attention with his cool tricks and rock star hair (I told Austin he needs to grow his hair out).  If you have time, check out their website and listen to their music. 

We were able to chat with Ryan, the lead singer for Silverline.  He had his youngest daughter with him (almost two?) after their performance.  He was very easy to talk to.  He told us a bit about their band, his family (expecting blessing #4!) and road life.  God is doing great things in their lives.  I'm excited to see where these guys go. 

Next up was Rapture Ruckus, a group from New Zealand.  They told the crowd they were excited to be in the states, the place where all their favorite TV shows originated (Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, Full house).  I got a HUGE kick out of that .

They're a bit of rock and electronic combined.  They're on fire for God and excited to spread the gospel.   Just three guys in the band and they fill out the sound well.  I was glad I checked them out on spotify beforehand.  I was able to sing along a little bit.  ;)

When FF5 hit the stage, there was SO MUCH excitement in the crowd.  I REALLY wish I had a better camera with me, but alas, most of my pics were from my phone. 

Chapstique
Okay, so we know that FF5 is great on CD.  They were AWESOME live!  I can't say that about every band I've seen live or on youtube.  In fact, I've been quite disappointed by quite a few groups, but NOT this time. 

Solomon's son, Cash, came on stage a few times.  He's an adorable little guy and LOVES the stage. 

Austin spent a good portion of their stage time watching Crouton play drums.  I think he's excited to keep drumming!

After the concert, we had the option of going to FF5's after party.   Well, see, Todd and I aren't quite the young spring chickens we once were and weren't sure if we wanted to stay.  But we did.  We figured we'd check it out.

We waited in line for a bit and we noticed that Austin was fading.  It was about 9:30.  He's certainly NOT a night owl.  Add to that, that the only thing we had eaten since lunch was a candy bar, and he was NOT ready to party. 

It was a room with a small stage set up.  Rather 'intimate' in size and close to the band members.  Soul Glow had a small DJ set up.  It was a dance party with the whole band.  Man, if I was just a few years younger, I could have rocked it.  Oh, and I was totally wearing the wrong shoes. Not any jumping up and down for this mama 

Todd went to the vending machine to get Austin something to eat.  However, he still wasn't feeling good afterwards, so we decided to head home.  Well, a quick stop to pick up some burgers and THEN we headed home. 

We had such an amazing night.  Certainly not one we'll forget any time soon.


Austin's signed drumsticks, signed pass, bracelets, and drumsticks that Crouton gave him.  They were 'gently' used.  LOL





My little drummer boy

Austin practices drums each week with our worship director at church and each week he asks me to take a video of him.  Here's the latest.  First he practices what the homeschool band director gives him, then he just goofs around and makes his own beats.  He REALLY enjoys himself and does a great job.  This video is on one of their electronic sets.
video

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Not sure how to comfort a mom during her loss?

A reader shared a site with me that her friend had posted.  There is SO MUCH information that I'm just scratching the surface.

I have found that a LOT of my friends and family have no idea how to 'handle' me.  Many people haven't even said one word about our losses.  Not even saying "sorry for your losses".  It floors me. 

If you are unsure of what to say/do/not do, I encourage you to check out this link. It's a great start and will help you in supporting a mother and her family through a loss. 

http://www.stillbirthday.com/familyfriends/

Friday, March 15, 2013

Some days are just better than others

Today is just not one of those days.  My mind and my heart are all over the place.  We've got so much going on that I just can't think straight. 

First and foremost is that we're moving this summer.  We have yet to find a place to rent and it's making me sick.  I would REALLY just like to know where and how much so I can start planning and preparing.  It's just not happening. God is saying to WAIT.

Secondly, I'm watching all my friends have their babies.  While it's a blessing and wonderful time to rejoice, my heart is heavy thinking about what I won't have.  I would have been 32 weeks on Monday.  With twins. I would have been just 4-6 weeks away from meeting the two newest members of our family. 

I dreaded watching this time come and it's here.  I was hoping to be pregnant before March so I'd have a tiny bit of joy of my own.  I know becoming pregnant again won't take away my pain.  I've said it over and over......Its just that the emptiness is SO hard to take sometimes. 

I have friends who are dealing with or have dealt with infertility.  Advice that I've been given from these friends are to not let what I experienced make me bitter.  And I'm not.  However, I think it's hard for people to imagine what came out of me in the hospital.  The tiny, red, lifeless body I held in my hands.

It wrecked me. 

I fear that God will never bless us again in that same way.  I fear that I will never again feel life growing within my body. 

I have a select few friends who know how bad I'm struggling.  I don't want to be a burden, so I call no one.  I ask for nothing.  But people don't know how to 'handle' me.  They'd rather not see me cry, so they say nothing to me. 

In fact, good friends had suggested , instead of constantly talking to them about it, that I see a counselor.  I was floored.  I don't need to talk to someone I DON'T know about the most painful part of my life.  I need good friends to lend their ears.  I need people to love me and not judge me.  I need to talk it out. If I DON'T talk about my babies, I'm afraid I will forget them. 

I don't know when I'll be okay with what happened.  I don't know the timeline God has for my grief.  What I do know is that the wound is still raw. 

Sunday, March 3, 2013

Someone else who 'get's it'

I stumbled across a blog from a friends' blog.  She lost twins just days shy of 20 weeks.  Her words ring with truth. Read it.

http://www.hormonal-imbalances.com/2012/05/is-anger-ok/

Friday, March 1, 2013

Lyrics

Killing Me Inside - Crossfade

There's a dream that comes to me
And it whispers all night long
Telling lies of things to be
And makes it all seem wrong
Even sleep is choking me
Am I feeling weak or strong
In the dreams I could not be
But it's killing me inside

It's killing me inside
Killing me inside

There's a dream I cannot see
And it laughs for all too long
Open eyes stare down at me
And it sings the same old song
Now its raining down on me
And I can't believe they're gone
All the dreams I used to see
Is now killing me inside


**yep.  It's been one of those days. This song just happened to be way to fitting.  Heard it for the first time today.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

You HAVE to watch this!

Okay, yes, it's the sermon from this past Sunday.  Matthew Molesky, our pastor, has an AWESOME vision and is great with visual presentation.  The passage he used was Luke 6:27–6:36.  WATCH IT!!


Monday, February 18, 2013

'New' car


Due to the fact that Todd's Lumina had seen better days, we decided that we needed to get a 'new' vehicle.  You know, one that doesn't have a hole in the gas tank, has heat, and won't overheat.  Just some MINOR things.
 

After I won the test drive from Miller Auto (a year and a half ago?) I fell in love with the Altima.  I thought it was rather impossible to find what we wanted and didn't have 160,000+ miles on it.  But, thanks to a wonderful friend who crunched the numbers for us, we now have our own 2005 Altima.  With only 88,000 miles on it.  Woot!


We now have a vehicle that should last us for MORE than just a few years.  Praise God for his provisions. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Life is not...

Just sitting here at my computer and thinking....it's 12am and I'm lonely.  My husband is at work, my children are in bed, and I'm left with my thoughts.  And my tears.  I'm missing our babies something awful tonight and I'm not sure why.  I've been okay for quite some time now.  I have cried like this in a while.

But I'm sitting here thinking about the women's bible study I'm a part of.  We're reading through What Did You Expect by Paul David Tripp.  What's really stuck out to me so far is life not being tallied in the big things, but in the mundane.  The every day things. THAT is where you REALLY live your life.

In the last few weeks, I've been pouring in to God's word.  Not to heal necessarily, but to learn.  To grow closer to God.  I'm remembering that He has some amazing plans for me and my husband, but for our family. 

I keep thinking of how each little thing we go through grows us and matures us.  One of my favorite Bible verses, and what I do believe is my life verse, is in Romans 5. 

Romans 5

English Standard Version (ESV)

Peace with God Through Faith

Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we[a] have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith[b] into this grace in which we stand, and we[c] rejoice[d] in hope of the glory of God. 3 Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person—though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die— but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. 11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

I am in awe of God's promise for us. US!  You, me, and all who believe.  

I have, in my head, an idea of how things should go.  But you know what? I'd prefer things God's way. 

Another passage came to mind a couple of minutes ago:

1 Kings 19:11-13

King James Version (KJV)
11 And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake:
12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.

I've been listening for that still, small voice.  You have to really quiet yourself.  He speaks.  He's not in the fire....

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Little Girls

So Leah(3) says to me, "Mom.  I really miss my friend Leah.  She lives far away in a different house.  She wears a polka dot jacket". 

I would love to plan a play date with this friend, but the details are a bit fuzzy for her.  ;)

Friday, February 1, 2013

phone call

Every time I use the phone I need to tell the kids "Quiet now.  Mommy is going to be using the phone".  More often than not I find myself cringing as they scream and fight while I'm making my call.  Hoping the people on the other end of the line will be as gracious as my friends.  :/

Friday, January 25, 2013

Just gotta say it

I want another baby.  I want to feel a glorious baby kicking inside of me.  I want to feel a little one whirling and twirling and punching and kicking it's way around in my womb. 

With each cycle my heart breaks just a little.  Did I expect it to happen right away?  Kinda.  I seem to be a bit of a fertile Myrtle so I was thinking it wouldn't take much. 

Do I think having another baby will 'cure' me of my pain?  No. 

Do I think having another baby will bring absolute joy?  No.  Only God can. 

But, I believe that God changed our hearts for a reason.  So here's to the next cycle....

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Another loss

My sister delivered her son yesterday morning at 21 weeks gestation.  Sadly, he did not live.  My heart breaks for my sister, knowing the pain that she's going through and having that HUGE empty feeling.....

I was able to make it to the hospital yesterday before Todd headed to work.  I was able to hold my sister while she wept.  I was able to hold my sweet little nephew.  I was able.

I am so thankful for friends that pray for us.  I am blown away by the support I've received in my own losses from people that I've never even met in person.  Blown away by the love received from people that don't know us so well.  By the continued hugs of friends who know I'm STILL hurting.

But what I really DON'T get, is the people that I counted on to be there, weren't. My mother for example.  At this point, I really shouldn't be bothered by it anymore.  I get NO support from her.  She was one of the first people we called when we lost our second twin.  She never visited me in the hospital or at home.  There was no hug of loss, no "I'm so sorry", no "I love you".  Just "somethings aren't meant to be" and "you know, you're sister has had miscarriages, too".

I'm also surprised by the lack of ANYTHING from certain friends.  Especially a friend I considered to be one of my BEST friends.

There has been a HUGE void because of this.  Perhaps because God has brought OTHER people in my life that have been such wonderful support.  I don't think I could get through this without them. 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Cycle Day 1

Again.  I tested twice this weekend and both were negative so I KNEW it was coming.  I guess I just wasn't ready for the pain; physically and emotionally. 

I was really hoping that we would get to see two little lines or a 'pregnant' in the test window BEFORE all my friends started having their babies.  Getting my period is a vicious reminder that my womb is empty and hollow.

Today is has been eight weeks since I delivered our remaining twin.  It feels like forever yet it feels just like yesterday.  Eight weeks since I saw my dead baby laying in my hands.  Eight weeks since my insides were scraped out to remove every last little bit. 

So badly do I want it all just to be better...

This morning, on the way to church, Todd told me to take the time I needed in church.  I wasn't quite sure what he meant, so I asked for clarification.  He said he didn't want to see me cry, so he suggested I take time away from worship/service if I needed. 

I was SO hurt by that.  He continues to say he supports me and wants to help me through this, but it doesn't feel like it. He doesn't understand why I STILL cry. 

I am TRYING to understand God's purpose in all of this.  I wrote about Trust a few months ago, shortly after I miscarried twin b.  It is SO MUCH easier to trust when you are on the receiving end of things.  Not so much when they're taken away. 

Sunday, January 13, 2013

God Changes Hearts

It's a pretty obvious fact that God changes hearts.  When there is something I want to see happen, I think to myself, "God knows the desires of my heart" and leave it there.  

To be honest, when we first found out we were expecting in September we weren't terribly excited.  Ian has been such a wonderful baby/toddler, that it would be good to go out on a good one.  That five was about my limit as I had been feeling tired and run down for quite some time.  I didn't want to have another baby in our small town home.  I feel ashamed for having those feelings now.

But God, through the loss of our twins, has changed our hearts.  He has made us WANT to let Him do His will with our family.  We don't care if God blesses us with 10 or more kids or with none (although the latter seems weird). 

We really want to have another little blessing to hold and snuggle.  Another sibling for our kids who, I keep forgetting, are now missing 2 or more siblings.  Even little Leah reminds people that "mommy's babies didn't make it".

So we pray for God to bless us again, when HE is ready.  Whether it's in this house, or not. 

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Here and now

"God's power is given for the here and now. We may think and deliberate and mull things over for months, but God is ready to begin immediately when it comes to matters of His will." Bruce Wilkinson, Prayer of Jabez devotional
Okay, to be honest, the Prayer of Jabez devotional is on a shelf in my bathroom.  It was a quick read today and it struck a chord with me.  Even if *I'm* not ready, God always is. 

I had a bit of a breakdown over the weekend, but with the help of my husband and some friends, I let it ALL out.  I was holding back for quite some time, as I didn't want to make anyone uncomfortable around me, I didn't want to burden people.  But that was the WRONG thing to do.  
That night, I slept well for the first time in nearly 6 weeks.  I was no longer carrying my burden alone.  I felt understood.  Now, I'm able to pray without crying and asking "why".  I was able to sing throughout worship at church Sunday morning WITHOUT crying.  It was a GREAT day!

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Finding Joy?

I'm trying, but it's just not coming.  I'm trying to CHOOSE joy, but it just isn't happening.  Each day there is a new reminder that I'm empty.  That my babies died and there will be no future with them.  I *try* to remember that God works all things for HIS glory, but it doesn't stick. 

I'm not sleeping, food has lost it's taste, and I'm just plain not cheery.  I do what I need to as wife and mom, but my nights during the week (Todd works nights) are lonely.  Far too quiet.  Just too much time to think

So many people have tried to find the words to comfort me.  And, while I appreciate most of them, some are just difficult:

"Just be thankful for the kids you DO have"

"Sometimes, things just don't work out"

"Don't wallow in self pity"

"At least you weren't further along"

It's the lack of a future with our babies that is hard.  The space in our hearts that we made that is now empty, stings. 

I want to run away crying when friends talk about their pregnancies.  It reminds me of what I don't have.  Why do I STILL feel this way?  When will it stop?  Why can't I just be HAPPY for them, without the sadness I feel for me? 

Todd and I BOTH feel our family is incomplete.  But the idea of trying to conceive scares me.  What if it takes a long time?  What if I lose ANOTHER baby?  How will I feel when my friends start having their babies and my arms (and womb) are still empty? 

Our pastor posted Matthew 5:4 on facebook today:

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted."

Why don't I feel this?  I just feel BROKENHow do I fix myself? 
My husband says I need to pray about it.  But I *DO*.  I cry out.  There are no answers.  There is no relief.  Just emptiness.