Monday, December 29, 2008

MEND Walk to Remember

The 12th annual MEND Walk to Remember was in October...I failed to get pics posted. It was a beautiful day. A little windy, but it all worked out nicely. Al & I served on the committee and I was in charge of the raffle along with another MEND mommy - we raised more money this year than any other year. :) It was great to help and be able to know that we were a part of making the day special for new families in 2008. Here are a few pics to share the day...

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

God Moments and Crazy Dreams...

Mascara Alert!! This may make you cry - especially if you have lost a child or know me through MEND.

I woke up in tears this morning. Well, actually, I didn't want to wake up this morning. I was dreaming about AJ and I kept forcing myself back to sleep in hopes that I could hold him, kiss him and see his smile up close. In my sleep I failed to realize what was happening in the dream, but once I woke up, it was clear. Our 20 month old son was in my dream and out of my reach.

There was a reunion at a park with all of our MEND friends - among them were Rebekah and Byron (founders of MEND). The park was beautiful. Lush green, flowers everywhere, picnic tables, butterflies all around and a body of water that separated us from our children. I didn't realize it in the dream, but every time I tried to get close to AJ, the water was too deep and Byron would be beside me telling me "you can't cross, you can only watch"...but he said it with the biggest smile on his face. It was like he had been there many times and as if it was a treat to watch from afar. In my dream, I did not understand this and continued to try to cross that water.

At one point AJ fell - it must have been a bad fall because I recall saying "how can he 'almost' die if he is already dead?" (He was just fine.) The children were all ages...laughing and playing. I won't name all of the parents who were in my dream - must protect the innocent - but I can remember seeing all of our MEND friends - I assume the other children belonged to them. Either way - it was the most beautiful place and the children were all very happy.

In my dream all of the MEND parents were sitting around talking about our God moments surrounding our child's death. How in one way or another, God reassured them that their child rested in His arms safe and sound. For us, you may recall, it was the snow and the song on the day of AJ's funeral. There have been many other God moments for us throughout the last almost 21 months, but none have compared to that day.

So my question is this...Does God allows us to have dreams to give us glimpses of what will be? Or is it really like the Cinderella song I used to sing as a child, "A dream is a wish your heart makes, when you're fast asleep..." Am I just wishing and having crazy pregnancy dreams?

We crossed a HUGE mile marker this week. We made it to the 20 week mark with this pregnancy. While each mile marker is a blessing and we don't take even one day for granted, if something happens to this child - we will be planning another funeral. The thought blows my mind, but it's now part of our reality. We don't dwell on the reality, but it is what it is. It's a simple - yet constant - reminder that life is so fragile and we are NOT in control of anything.

Dying no longer scares me. Part of our reality is that a small part of Al & I are already in heaven waiting. I'm not talking about just the physical part of us, but the spiritual and emotional part of us that died - or was born - with AJ. Spiritually - we have had great rebirth on many levels. Emotionally - a part of us is missing. And somehow - call it a God moment - that's ok.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Our Family Pics 2008

Great pics by JH Photography . Once again...Jenn you out did yourself! We love them!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Big Brother figured it out

We were waiting to tell Eli about this pregnancy. But last night he and I were dancing with the stars and he looked at me and outright asked, "Mommy - do you have a baby in your tummy?" Of course we couldn't lie, so we told him. He is so excited to be a big brother on earth. He keeps saying he wants a brother, but he says it's ok if it's a sister too. I don't know how he figured it out, but he did.

I began feeling Bubble Jack move last week. I don't remember feeling movement with either of the boys at 14 weeks, but they say that experienced moms usually notice it earlier. It's good to have the reassurance of movements, but is worriesome when I go a period of time without feeling Bubble Jack move and wiggle. It shall be well...

And so our family grows again...

Saturday, November 1, 2008

I love this quote!

"Success is failure with the dirt brushed off."
~Mamie McCullough

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Tough Day

We went for a doctor appointment today. Bubble Jack is growing and doing just fine as of right now. :)

I was NOT thinking when I made the appointment for today! Not only did I have to see Dr B today (the doc that delivered AJ) but today he would have been 19 months old. Since this was really the first time that I've had face-time with Dr B, it was a real challenge. It all dawned on me while driving to the appointment. I was very thankful that Al was going to be with me and I wouldn't have to do it alone. I think it was hard for Dr B as well...I can't say that she has grown on me at all, but I definitely respect and am glad that she was there to deliver AJ. If I didn't love Dr P so much, I would probably change offices because of the hard memories I have to deal with at each appointment.

Speaking of has been very hard lately. My opinions are not valued, I am not appreciated or trusted and I'm tired of being treated like an idiot. I have so much to offer the university and my office, but I'm not allowed to do it. I went from being a keystone in a department that I loved, but that I needed to get out of, to a pebblestone in a department that I really thought I could do good and contribute to. I've learned a lot about the word 'control' since AJ died and have realized the lack of control that we really have in life. Therefore, I find it harder to deal with people that refuse to realize that life is not about controlling people and situations. Life is about teaching and learning. I believe in empowering people, teaching people, sharing and developing others with the knowledge I have and in turn learning from them. I believe in learning from failure and mistakes and allowing others to fail so they can learn as well. I think I am beginning to realize that I miss management because so much of management is teaching and learning. Don't get me wrong, I was at a time in my life that I needed to not manage people after AJ died because I could barely manage myself...but I have found that I really miss the reward of empowering and teaching others. Something has to change in the future because I refuse to waste away unappreciated for years to come. I need more and have more to give.

The one upside of work is the fact that I don't have to deal with a lot of questions about this pregnancy. I can't begin to describe how emotional I feel about everything to do with this pregnancy. Every time there is a spot of blood, pain or ache I fear that it's the end. Don't get me wrong - I'm not living in fear, but I am a mess worrying about this baby's safety. We haven't told Eli yet because we can't bear to have to tell him that he has yet another sibling in heaven. His perception of AJ and heaven seems so mature for only being 4 years old. We were driving down the street and he began singing a song out of nowhere, "I am going to eat all of my vegetables and food so I can grow up and be big and tall to go up in the sky to my brother AJ and Jesus, and I'll get to see my favorite dog Sonora"...I was in tears!! Just amazes me how he grasps that his brother and his dog are in heaven with Jesus and he seems ok with it. I'm not ok with it...but his innocence reminds me that God has it all in His hand and I'm cool with that. I'm thankful for God imparting a 4 year olds wisdom on us through this journey.

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I + I = baby

Ok - so my dear faithful readers may have been left wondering when my infertility blog was going to start. Well, at the end of August infertile merytle found out I am pregers. We are only 10-11 weeks along, but the stress and emotions are running high. This pregnancy is about a month off of the time that I was pregnant with AJ so I am passing pregnancy hurdles about the same time. I have not been feeling well AT ALL so it has been rather challenging, but worth it. I know how horrible it sounds, but I seem to live each day waiting for the other shoe to drop. Maybe that's just part of life for us now - knowing too much about what can really happen to babies - knowing the deepest heartache.

Today, like many others I wasn't feeling well and came home to rest. I woke up around 6pm and immediately - out of the blue - flashed back to that day we came home empty handed from the hospital. The day AJ died and we were left feeling lost and heartbroken. I remember getting home and standing in the rain until Al made me come inside. I remember sitting in his room numb and lifeless until Al moved me into the bedroom. I couldn't eat - Al made me so I wouldn't get sick from the pain medicine. I couldn't close my eyes - Al held me until I fell asleep. For days he held me up when I couldn't make myself move.

How in the world did he do all of that for me? What about his needs, his hurts, his pain? I know on some levels I hope I returned the support to him that he gave to me, but I don't think it in any way measures up. And now - I'm an emotional mess all over again and he is here to pick up my pieces. How in the world did I get so lucky?

I think he shares my nerves and my fear of failure on some levels. But he stays strong and encouraging. I am so afraid of letting him down. I am so afraid of living the heartache again. I know I need to be still and know. It will all be what it's gonna be and the Lord has it all in His hands. We ask you for your prayers for this new life growing, for the strength to get through each day with hope and peace, and please pray for the strength to endure whatever God has in store for our family.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

The morning rainbow

I walked out this morning to be greeted by a beautiful rainbow adorning the sky.  Vibrant colors staring down as if to say - "look at me in all my beauty".  I ran back in the house and grabbed the camera to capture this moment.  The early morning showers and beautiful sunrise provided the ideal setting for this wonderful treat.  I snapped a few shots and jumped in the car.  

Driving in to the office, the sun to my rear bumper, the dark clouds in the western sky were the perfect back drop to marvel in the beautiful work of God.  The shadows that were cast upon the trees by the morning sun made it all look like a painting, and I was driving right into the picture. There in the wind flew the beautiful red, white and blue, reminding me of how blessed we are to live in a country that doesn't kill babies because they are the wrong sex, that I don't have to face religious persecution on a daily basis, that life - each day - is a gift.

I was listening to the Journey (91.7) as I usually do on my way in for my daily inspiration.  But today - my inspiration was so much more.  I found myself wondering if heaven will be this beautiful?  Will I even care once I get there as long as I can hold my son again.  A song came on as Tom Dooley wound the session down titled  "New Day" by Joy Williams.  I drove and cried - and cried and drove.  Then it hit me - today is July 30th....AJ would have been 16 months old today. (( I later found out that Al & Eli saw the same rainbow and it hit Al just the same as it did me.  :)  It's nice when we meet in the middle of the grief cycle if even for a minute.))

Could it be that God knew I needed to see that beautiful rainbow today and hear that specific song?  In the midst of infertility, a sick living child, and a dead baby - was He reminding me to hope?   Hope in the promises He so clearly makes to us?  Hope that this time on earth is but a temporary stop?  Hope that joy will come in the morning...

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

It's been a while...

I apologize for my absence. A lot has been going here it is.

Mother's Day
Well, Mother's day was probably one of my worst days. I stayed in bed and cried all day. I don't really remember much from mother's day last year, so this year I suppose it hit harder than I expected. I should have expected the day to go south as I had been crying every day that entire week. I would get up and do something and ended up right back on the bed crying. I was a horrible wife and mother that day...but I think DH understood and my guilt outweighed the impact of what really happened.

On May 14th, I finally got up the courage to go back to see my doctor to determine if we will be able to get pregnant again. Turns out my friend Poly (PCOS) has been back for an extended stay in my ovaries. Doc said he doesn't think that I have ovulated in months. He started me on Progesterone and Clomid to jump start my ovaries and ran a bunch of labs. It also turns out I have a blood clotting issue and also had to start a baby aspirin daily.

13 1/2 months after AJ died, my wheels came flying off the bus that week. On May 15th, I had - what I endearingly call - a breakdown. I was mad at God for the first time. Mad that He took AJ from us and that my body is not working right now for us to get pregnant again. I was mad that He blessed us with AJ without drugs or medical intervention like we had with Eli, yet He took AJ from us...hence forcing us to go through all of this again. I have had my 2 kids - we were only having 2 kids - WHY$^&*($#@ did I have to go through all of this??? Well, I guess the stress of all of that, coupled with my doc also reminding me that I need to move forward (in a nice way) and telling me that Al and Eli are depending on me to move forward, made me feel like I was having a heart attack. Full blown chest pain, shortness of breath, neck pain, light headed, dizzy, arm pain - you name it - I had it. I tried and tried to calm myself down and couldn't. So we called EMS to make sure I wasn't having a heart attack.

I didn't - just an embarrassment attack!! I couldn't believe that - I - ME - had an anxiety attack. It took me several days to admit it, accept it and well get used to the idea that I am indeed human and can't handle it all. I went and followed up with a cardiologist to be sure that the ticker is good. He said that he sees several women a month who are trying to get pregnant and have similar symptoms so I didn't feel quite as embarrassed as I did sitting in the waiting room with 70 & 80 year olds.

I was also instructed to lose weight to help my body start cooperating again. I began working out every morning and so far have lost 8 lbs - woo hoo!! On one hand it seems futile since my goal is to get pregnant, but I have to do it to get pregnant - so I do. I picture AJ's face during my work outs and imagine holding him again. Another pregnancy will in no way replace AJ, but somehow another baby will help mend our broken hearts. I am petrified of getting pregnant again on some levels, desperate in others, and hopeful all at the same time.

We just finished our second round of Clomid and are back in the sex-filled waiting game. If this round doesn't work, then I think I will start yet another blog that I will not be able to keep up with to journal our infertility journey. We are not willing to admit defeat, although we know that in the future we may have to. God has the plan all worked out...and because I'm still running on a little bit of anger - the plan SUCKS!!! Trying to follow my favorite advice and Let GO and Let GOD...but I'm human and that's hard!!

Check our family blog to catch up with all that has been going on with Eli...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

Beautiful Christian Sister ~ by Maya Angelou

A woman's heart should be so hidden in Christ that a man should have to seek Him first to find her."
When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not shouting 'I'm clean livin
''I'm whispering 'I was lost, Now I'm found and forgiven.

'When I say... 'I am a Christian' I don't speak of this with pride.
I'm confessing that I stumble and need Christ to be my guide.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not trying to be strong.
I'm professing that I'm weak and need His strength to carry on.

When I say. 'I am a Christian' I'm not bragging of success.
I'm admitting I have failed and need God to clean my mess.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not claiming to be perfect,
My flaws are far too visible, but God believes I am worth it.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I still feel the sting of pain.
I have my share of heartaches, so I call upon His name.

When I say... 'I am a Christian' I'm not holier than thou;
I'm just a simple sinner who received God's good grace, somehow!'

I love this....I have a lot to post about, but don't have time or the words to get it all out right now. I'll post soon. :)

Monday, April 28, 2008

Happy Birthday Blog...

I sat numb in my room tonight as I found the journal I used to document the first days after AJ died. I stopped my last journal entry in mid sentence, "At one point during the service I turned my head to see who was there, and the...". I can't tell you what happened to my train of thought, but the finish to that sentence was "...the...first person I saw was Dr Peters, and I lost it."

I knew in my mind that at some point last April I began this blog to document where we had been and where we were going. I'm so thankful for dear old blog, you see - without this, I would have NO idea what had happened in our lives for about 4 months after AJ died and would have little recollection of the remainder of the year.

I suppose because I have no actual memories of this time last year, I have returned to a sense of numbness. On some levels I am reliving the pain, but I can't remember - so it is different. I just find myself with a dull ache and emptiness. Sometime overwhelming sadness, sometimes not. A holding pattern of sorts I suppose.

So I find it only fitting to wish my dear old/new friend - - HAPPY BIRTHDAY !!!! You have provided a much needed outlet, support and memories. Thank you to my faithful readers. God bless those who have happened upon our story during a time of sadness and hurt for your own children. Thank you for emailing me to let me know that AJ's life touched yours. May his memory live forever.

Friday, April 18, 2008

March for Babies

We are walking to remember - we are walking to honor - we are walking to love!!
Please participate in any way you can - prayers, walking with us, money, or simply donate a HUG in memory of AJ to someone you love!!
God Bless!!

Update = 4-28-08


We were blessed to be joined in the walk by many in spirit, financial support and in person. THANK YOU to all who helped us reach our goal!! Jenn, Sawyer, Jane, Linda, Mo and Deseri all got together to help us march our way to the finish line along the "Path of Hope".

Along the Path of Hope, about every 20 feet or so, there was a marker remembering, honoring and celebrating babies and children. Lives that touched the world or continue to change the world on a daily basis. It was beautiful. Next year (and the years to come) we hope to honor AJ with his own special sign of inspiration. We couldn't survive this life without our Lord and Savior, our family and our friends. Blessings to you all.

Founding families of "Team Adrian"

Fito & Jackie - Proud Parents of Adrian James "AJ"

Al, Amber & Big (tired) Brother Eli - Proud Family of Adrian Joseph "AJ"

Auntie Jane and Mr Eli -
aka Larry - riding the bus back to the car...

Jenn and Sawyer

What fun we had!!!! The boys slept for a good part of the walk - enjoyed their cool ride - thanks to Jeep! It was an awesome experience and we look forward to doing it again and again!!! Get your walking shoes year we MARCH again!!!

Thursday, April 17, 2008

How did I get here?

Growing up with a single mother, one of three children - middle child at that, was not easy. But you would have never known it. My mother worked 2-3 jobs, 5 when you included the jobs of being mom AND dad. I can't ever remember "wanting" for something I didn't have, because she did everything in her power to provide for our every want, need and desire. Sure, I didn't wear 'Guess' jeans or have the latest or greatest leg warmers (80's child!), but I had what all those kids who had that 'stuff' didn't have. I had a mom that taught us the difference between right and wrong. She taught us it is ok to be different - we were special without the fashion and popularity. She taught us we could accomplish absolutely anything we set our mind to - the only limits we have are those which we place on ourselves. She taught us, by example, that God will always be there to sustain us when all of the worldly possessions and people fail you.

I can't imagine walking this path in my life without God. Without knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt that the day I die, I will be reunited with AJ and all those loved ones that go before us. Without knowing! that I will see my savior's face and be in total awe at how blessed I have been to walk with him, have him as my protector and guide through this now current 'hell' that I think I am living. He guides my way daily, gives me strength to get out of bed and face this cruel world, teaches me compassion first hand so that I may be a comfort to at least one other person in this world.

I know there is nothing I can do to bring back my baby. And likewise, I know that God has left me here for a purpose. I will be AJ's voice. I will follow His will for my life. I will do as I am asked - because He first loved me and gave me the gift of grace. Because MY mother taught me the importance of faith - not religion. Because she taught me forgiveness, difference, kindness, dedication, compassion, creativity, humility and love - all Father filtered.

Sunday, March 30, 2008


Happy Birthday little Mater!!
We hope you have a wonderful birthday with Jesus and your friends. Watch for our balloons today! We love you so very much and are so proud of you!!!! You are a blessing in our lives and a daily reminder of how Great God is. We miss you terribly, but someday, we will all be reunited!!
We love you SO SO much!!!
Mommy, Daddy & Eli

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Deep Breath....

It's about 11:30 on March 29th...we were leaving for the hospital right about now to bring home our baby boy. Contractions were about 3-4 minutes apart. Eli was with Granny sleeping innocently. It was a rainy night. We were so excited...our bliss was about to be revoked. Our hearts broken. Our faith tested. Our psyche challenged. Our lives changed forever.

A year later I don't feel like much has been accomplished in the past 12 months. But I know better. I don't know how we have gotten up each day 'acted the part' God assigned to us. But we have. I don't know what our lives would be like if AJ was here. But that's ok?

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

In a heartbeat

A year ago was the last time I heard AJ's heart beating. It sounded like galloping horses - it was the most beautiful sound. I remember Dr. Peters specifically stopping to marvel at the sound.

I believe that AJ's heart stopped beating and his spirit left my body sometime in the early morning hours of March 27th. I woke up just not feeling right - went to the bathroom, but nothing too abnormal. I just never felt the same again - and I never will.

Friday, March 21, 2008

1 year ago

Me - 9 months prego - awaiting little AJ's arrival.

One year ago this morning was AJ's first and only baby shower. Other showers was being planned for after he was born. My work family threw a beautiful shower with awesome food - what they are best known for. It was a God thing that I was able to get all of my thank you cards done for them before he was born, otherwise, I don't know that I would have ever been able to do them. (I still haven't been able to do the thank you cards for the funeral and things everyone did for us after he died.)
I just thought I would share a few pictures of this wonderful memory.

Granny, Mommy and Aunt June

Mommy & Ms. Jane (Work mom!)

AJ's "I love my Big Brother" bib...

Mommy & Tio Franko (Eli & AJ's Tio, My work dad)

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Do you believe?

Over the past year I have seen "AJ" everywhere. We watch Fox news every morning. Right after AJ died, a new news reporter named Adrian joined the morning news. I have seen "AJ" as the name of businesses, on the rear window of cars driving down the street, the designated number on semi-truck passing us by, the name of the sales clerk at JC Penny's, as the name of the boy with his dad at Gamestop as we bought our first Wii game with Eli, yesterday on the court TV show while I ate lunch and then this morning on the bottom of the perfectly white bag that our breakfast came in, I looked up to see the initials AJ.

I firmly believe that those things are not simple coincidences or that I notice them only because he is all I can think of, but rather that it's God's will placing those reminders in our path. If I was not in that exact place at that exact moment, I would never see those reminders. I would not be blessed by such a seemingly insignificant thing to anyone else, but to me it's a reminder of my sweet baby boy and what is missing in our lives.

Yesterday we got a "Happy 1st Birthday" party planning guide from Toys R Us. It hurt so bad to be 'in my face' that he is not here to plan a party for. Sometimes when we get mail like that it doesn't bother me, others I just want to call and yell at someone for not knowing that our baby died and why are they sending us stuff. 100% of the time, despite the knee jerk reaction, file 13 is where it all ends up.

I believe in signs. God driven signs that guide us, remind us, encourage us. I believe in the higher power that has great plans for us. I you believe?

Today's verse: Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord have never forsaken those who seek you. ~~ Psalm 9:10

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The Ignorance of Bliss

The old saying is "Ignorance is bliss", but is it?

We go through life trying to be happy and fulfilled. However, in our quest to be "blissful", do we turn our backs to the true harsh realities of life? Over the last 11 months, I have slowed down and noticed things that I would have never taken time to notice before. Simple things - a bird singing, a squirrel hiding his acorns for the winter, the imperfection of a perfect falling snowflake. I have also learned how to watch people, see the hurt in their eyes, the joy in their smiles and the pain in their loneliness.

Bliss simply masks the ignorance of everyday life. I'm certain that in my travels in life, I had heard that babies die - but I didn't stop to give value to that idea. I was aware of SIDS - but it didn't affect me or anyone I knew so I chose to be ignorant about the subject and continue on my path of bliss. Sure the abstract thoughts were filed in my mind, but they were not real to me.

Are we - as humans - wired to be ignorant? In my opinion - No. God has equipped us with the ability to learn, teach and minister. The simple fact is that we choose to be ignorant about subjects that scare us - such as death, poverty, disease, abuse and the unknown. Very few people would intervene if they saw a starving man on the street, a woman dying of a contagious disease or a case of domestic violence across the street. Instead most would choose to be ignorant in their bliss.

Babies die. If you didn't know it before, know it now. Viruses, birth defects, cancer, SIDS, in utero cord accidents and for no known reasons - babies die. The families affected by the loss of a child - at any age - never quit hurting. The intensity lightens, the frequency of 'breakdowns' increases - but the ache in your soul never goes away.

I can remember saying to my mom a few weeks before AJ was born - referring to my Aunt and Uncle who's son was killed by a drunk driver a few weeks after we found out we were pregnant - I can't imagine their pain. I questioned how do they even get up in the morning knowing that Joe isn't here? I had no idea we would first hand share their pain just a few weeks later.

I miss being ignorant to life around me. I sometimes wish I could return to the world in which I didn't notice everything, think about everything and ache on a daily basis. I know that God doesn't intend for me to live my life ignorant - that is why He has given us this responsibility. His full intention is for us to come out of the ignorance of bliss and give something back to this world. Right now - giving back is simply continuing to breathe on a daily basis. But I believe that someday soon - giving back will take on a whole new meaning.

Sunday, February 24, 2008


Do you trust me enough never to know the reason why?

A dear friend of mine said she read this years ago and committed it to memory, not knowing that she would be faced with a situation that would actually challenge her to it. We have special connection in that our babies both died from a "true knot" in the umbilical cord.

The incidence of a true knot is very rare and not all result in infant death. In the past 11 months I have never once researched the true knot - until now. I don't know if I just wasn't ready to deal with what I might find or what. So now I have a few questions that I hope to get answers to from a medical standpoint.

Ironic I suppose - a knot is something that is supposed to tie something together, to join one thing to another. Instead AJ was taken away. One definition of a knot is an imperfection or a creative design. I think we definitely look at this as an imperfection to our plan. However, in a sense it's indeed part of God's creative design. If you google "true knot" you will see beautiful colorful pictures of knots that possibly changed someones life in an instant. Medical mysteries to some, knots of sadness for others. I would do anything for a picture of AJ's knot... to see the true knot that God allowed to take our sweet baby boy.

I do trust God to never know the reason why. I trust that He has brought this burden and heartache into our lives to show us something, teach us, enable us. Enable us to learn to endure, share and comfort others, love fully, prioritize, appreciate and rejoice in His name. I choose to keep my eye on Him - no matter how dark, sad and lonely I get - for He is the only way back to my baby. I will trust in His promises, believe in His faithfulness and long for the glorious day He calls us home.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Mind Meld....

Today - well it was a really bad emotional day. It started off rough - and rough stuck around.

I had an early appointment. I forgot my cell phone at home, so when I got out of my appointment at 7:45 (too distraught to go to work at that moment) I went back to the house to get my phone. It was a 'total' God thing that just as I reached to unplug my phone on the counter - crying like a baby - the phone rang and it was my dear friend Jane. I squeaked out a "Hi" - and I think an "I'm ok" before I broke down crying. At that moment I think I was crying more that God sent her to me at that very moment - knowing how much I needed her. She and I have this mind meld thing going on and she said to me "something just told me I needed to call you". :-)

I stood in the bedroom holding AJ in my arms (I'm not crazy - we had him cremated) crying - praying for peace. I've really had a hard time being specific in prayer lately, but I just kept asking God to give me peace. And sure enough, after a few minutes of begging - a peace came over me and I was able to get myself together enough to go to work.

A friend - another mother from MEND - said that she was in a funk the months leading up to her baby girl's Birthday, but once the day came she had a very peaceful day. I can definitely relate to being in a funk. I don't want to talk, the weirdest things make me cry, my heart hurts exponentially more each day at the mere mention of a child, sight of a pregnant woman, baby, anniversary, song, you name it - I hurt. I analyze it to be because this time last year we were so close to the finish line and so full of anticipation and plans. Reliving each day parallel to last - hurts.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

The Why's & What's....

Ok - if you have kept up with my blog you know that I don't ask the question "why" when it comes to AJ's death. I am, however, going to ask the question why about something else.

Why??? people feel the need to say "you are young and healthy - you can just have another baby"? When someone’s mother, father, grandparents, brother, sister, aunt, uncle, friend, or enemy dies, we don't rush right up to them and say "don't worry - you can get another one."

We want another baby - but not to replace AJ - to enhance our family. To watch them grow, teach them right from wrong, to love and cherish every moment we will hopefully be blessed with. Often, Al will say that he is not so sad for us, but for what Eli is missing in his little brother - a friend, playmate and buddy. As parents, we want to fulfill that privilege for Eli. Al and I are both blessed with wonderful siblings, and my heart aches at the thought that Eli may never have that in the flesh.

We are not in search of a quick fix to our pain, anger or sadness. A baby would help restore hope, but it will never take away our pain. Someone said this week that they don't know how to help us. I have spent hours thinking of an answer to that. The comment has laid very heavy on my heart. The simple truth is that we just need our friends to be there. Listen. Don't try to have great words of wisdom - there are no words. Call and ask us out for dinner. We have spent almost a year trying to restore normalcy to our lives and that will not come if our dearest friends are too afraid to be around us.

I am a huge fan of Casting Crowns. One of their songs talks about "Love them like Jesus". In my search for a response for the question "what can people do for us" I always go back to that song. You don't need the answers, just be here, and love us unconditionally, like Jesus - even if that means you are out of your comfort zone.

We know people feel helpless around us. Imagine living in our skin 24/7 - we are the definition of helpless. We wander this earth trying to find and pick up pieces of this storybook life that we once had dreamed of. I don't think we will ever really find all the pieces - I don't think that's God's intention. He doesn't provide things in a nice pretty box labeled "Life". He unveils life to us once piece at a time. AJ dying happens to be a piece of our doesn't fit the way we expected it to all fit - but it is indeed part of our puzzle...and our picture of life is so much more beautiful, humble and complete with AJ in it.

If you have 10 minutes or so, watch the video below...touching!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

10 months

Wow - the time flies, yet I can't really tell you what has happened in the last 10 months. It's hard to believe that AJ would be cruising around, eating all kinds of things and probably be saying his first words by now.

I was uplifted today by a friend at work who said she still thinks of us, prays for us, and sometimes even still cries for us. I respect people who can just be real and honest with me, ask how I am without the fear of making me cry - yet crying with me when I do. As the time gets farther out, fewer people ask how we are. It is really special to me when someone does and tells me the way they remember AJ. And amazingly enough, I always encounter those special people when I'm having a really sad day...coincidence? I think not!!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

My dear friend Poly

Ok - yes that is meant with the utmost snarkiness!! I have a friend - her name is Poly - she is a distant relative of Aunt Flo. And let's face it - every woman knows Anut Flo. Well Poly - she is evil. She won't leave me alone!

You see, Poly and I became friends about 5 years ago when dear Dr. Peters introduced us. He looked at me and said "you may never be able to have kids - but we will try this medicine and I'll see you back in 6 months." Well - I wasn't really ready to accept Poly at that stage in my life, so I showed her - 6 weeks later - we were pregnant (totally a miracle - I had nothing really to do with it - I know). Eli's pregnancy was so nerve racking - spotting, cramping, tired, doctor visits all the time. But he came and he is wonderful.

Well , Poly and I remained estranged for years. In the summer of 06, I once again was blessed when we found out we were pregnant - this time without meds. It was a miracle - Dr Peters said sometimes Poly goes away after a normal pregnancy - was I fixed? I didn't care - we were going to have another baby. AJ's pregnancy was not as difficult, but I was still on edge just because - well - what mother doesn't worry about every little ache and pain when they are prego? We made it through the first trimester and well - one assumes everything is ok after that. I think you all know the story from here... God called our little angel home and now Poly is back for an extended stay.

I had hoped that Poly was gone for good, but not so much. After AJ's birth, my cycles seemed that they might have returned to some since of normalcy. Dr Peters gave me another prescription of the meds just in case they didn't regulate in June. Well, Aunt Flo came for her semi-normal monthly visit in July, August and September. But then Poly came for a visit in October and December. Now Poly, Aunt Flo and I have been duking it out for the past week. There have been moments when I think I'm gonna lose the battle.

So with all of that being said, a different roller coaster that life has me on is this...when Poly shows up, I skip cycles - right. Well, then I get my hopes up that - maybe just maybe - we could be blessed with another child. Then Aunt Flo comes and destroys me all over again. The physical pain is so bad - so reminiscent of the days after AJ died. The emotional pain so deep as it deflates what little hope gets restored in between visits from Aunt Flo. The mental pain is so exhausting! It's so hard not to let fear take over and rule my life. God has a plan, God has a plan...God has a plan!! I am just so afraid that this plan doesn't include more children for us...and there is fear - taking over! Oh I'm such a mess!!

Friday, January 4, 2008


Ok - God has a since of humor and if you don't believe it, look at this...

I received this email in the midst of a - let's just call it what it was - a baby breakdown - and the caption was... 

There's always hope!  
No matter what situation's life throws at you....
No matter how long and treacherous your journey may seem...
Remember, there is a light at the end of the tunnel!!!!

Sometimes it's hard to remember that simple thing - there is indeed a light at the end of the tunnel.  Thank God for friends who know just what you need when you need it!!  :)

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

So Long 2007....

Well, I know I've thought it, if I haven't already typed it before, but I'm so glad 2007 is gone!! Wouldn't trade away with it...or regret it, but don't want to relive it. I am praying that 2008 will bring better things for so many people.

From time to time, grief steps aside and allows us to enjoy something for a small amount of time in our day. We spent the last week in the mountains of South Dakota, and well...I think I would like to become a writer and move to the mountains. (I know that shoveling snow would get old, but it sounds good at the time.) I really missed my computer and blogs, but enjoyed the silence, snow, peace, and beauty of all that God created. Michael W. Smith sings a song about a mountain and how God brings us up to the top of the mountain to "rest and learn and grow, I see the truth upon the mountain and I carry it to a world far below" That song has really helped me in the last 9 months, despite feeling more like I'm in the valley, I have actually been on top of that mountain - learning, resting, growing closer to God.

If you keep up with my blog, you know that we have a special thing with snow...and snow was everywhere. It was great. I felt a great deal of peace, but watching all of the families together with their small children continually took my thoughts back to our missing AJ. To what will always be missing in the flesh, our son. We will never get to watch him attempt to ski, make a snowball or flirt with the snow bunnies. For that we are sad.

Today, New Year's Day, a day I didn't expect to be difficult, was! We slept late, then went to get some lunch, and for some reason - I just lost it. Grief had to remind me it was still here waiting for our return. Starting a new year brings hope yet refreshes our sadness.

Reading through my blog I notice the roller coaster grief has us on. Does it ever stop? Do we ever get a chance to get off? If so, would we want to? I feel like I've been trapped on this coaster for so long it's just what I do....I feel like I will fail AJ if I get off...I feel like I will be in foreign land by the time it stops moving us around. But - I have no control for now I will not worry!! Happy New Year to all!!