Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Twenty Years ago . . .

Twenty years ago today, two people came close to stepping over into eternity. One a teeny, yet unborn precious baby girl and the other, her mama.

Today we celebrate Victoria’s life. She is the most amazing daughter. After three rambunctious, denim overall wearing boys I had all but given up on having any pink in my world. I had grown accustomed to Tonka trucks and mud pies.

When we found out I was pregnant we were thrilled, but honestly, I was too afraid to believe it might be a girl. We tried to find out via ultrasound, but thanks to scar tissue from previous C-sections and a breech baby, we couldn’t tell. No matter how much jumping up and down and pleading I did between scans.

This little one was flipped upside down right up until the day of birth. We scheduled an appointment at the hospital in hopes of flipping this baby head down. In the middle of the procedure, the baby’s heart rate dropped and it turned into an emergency situation. In a matter of minutes, a very few minutes, I was whisked away leaving my terrified and confused husband behind.

The last thing I remember is a very kind doctor telling me to count backwards from ten. I think I got to seven. In those few seconds I knew there was chaos and panic in the room. Instruments fell on the floor, the doctor yelling and cursing.

I awoke to almost as much chaos. Several nurses working on me, but out of the corner of my eye, I saw the man I love looking teary eyed into a little bundle of baby blankets. He noticed me wake up and showed me this beautiful creature, informing me we had a daughter. I did not, for one second believe him. I actually made him unwrap her and show me. Instantly I had visions of pink, bows and headbands and more pink. Lacey, girly dresses and pink, lots of pink.

Things started to get fuzzy again, more panic in the room. My blood pressure was dropping and they could not stop the bleeding. I remember feeling like I was in that place, somewhere between consciousness and not. The pain I was in as they were pressing and squeezing on my non-anesthetized abdomen was beyond description. It was as though I was watching it all happen, feeling it, yet not feeling it. I remember looking to Brian and the baby. He was praying and looked concerned. The nurses, the chaos, yet I was in a place of peace. Almost waiting it out, I had no fear, only peace.

Next I knew, things had settled down, I was fully conscious and there was calm in the room again. We marveled at this tiny creature, so perfect and pink. I’m not sure what we were spared of that day, but I am forever grateful for God’s mercy and grace on us that day. I am in awe that He chose me to be Victoria’s mama.

Twenty years ago my life was forever changed. I am so proud of the woman she has become. She is a stinker, for sure, kind of like her mama, but she carries herself with such grace. She is strong, yet submissive. Beautiful and all girly, yet willing to work hard and get her hands dirty. Of course, she even pulls of the sweaty, dirty, messy look with grace and dignity. THAT she did not get from me. She has a tender heart towards the Lord and His word. She loves her daddy’s protection. She is incredibly capable and talented. I look forward to watching her grow more into the woman God created her to be. Happy birthday my sweet firstborn daughter. I love you so very much!
P.S. the precious thing gives ME flowers on her birthday! ‪#‎soblessed‬

Sunday, January 17, 2016

2016 Word of the Year

As usual, I wrestle with my ‘word’ each year. A girl wants to be sure, you know. Thankfully, my Father shows no signs of being weary with me.

I feel such a strong leading that ‘much will be required’ this year. Much to be done, changed, accomplished, fought for, hoped for and believed for. Part of me loves this. I love purpose and goals.
But honestly, part of me shrinks back because I know me. I know about how long ‘I’ can last. I know my weaknesses. I know some of the things required of me are far beyond ‘me’, actually, most of the things are far beyond me!

For the past several weeks, as I have reflected and prayed about this upcoming year, any ‘concern’ or question I had about it was met with the thought, ‘just believe’.

But God, this thing you seem to be leading us too, seems impossible. I hear, believe.
But my kids, or those who are hard to love, or the struggles . . . believe.
Um, we’ve been ‘here’ before and nothing seems to change . . . believe.
The physical and personal goals I almost dare to dream about . . . believe.
It seemed everywhere I turned, every question I had, every doubt that rose up was met with BELIEVE. Just believe.
What do I believe about this situation or that?
What do I believe about my God? What do I believe His Word says?
When the enemy comes roaring, what am I going to believe?
When symptoms or circumstances are beyond my control, what am I going to believe?
The scripture I felt led to was Mark 5:36. Jesus answered, Do not be afraid, only believe.

Along with this word ‘Believe’ is coming a strong sense that ‘much’ will be required this year. And a deep, deep conviction that unless I live with INTENTION, PURPOSE AND FOCUS, either I’ll burn out or do A LOT of things, but none of them well.
Believe also plays into this, because it is going to take God to bring it to fruition. So, I believe He is leading. I believe He will provide. I desperately need Him to give wisdom, guidance and strength. I know I have NONE of this of my own accord, but IN HIM, I am complete and have all I need. What am I going to believe this year? That is the question I ask.
So, officially, my ‘word’ is BELIEVE! With a side of INTENTION, PURPOSE AND FOCUS.

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Anniversary Letter to Brian 2015

Anniversary letter to Brian.
My dearest husband,
I have been thinking about us and where we are in life right now. I marvel at what we have been through and dream of where we may be going.
If we were currently going through some of those deep, dark times, I know what I would write. I would write of God’s faithfulness and your steadiness. Of how you have loved me through it all. Of how you held me amidst the storms, wiped tear after tear. Of how you would envelop me with your strength, even though you were breaking too. Of how you never, ever allowed me to lose hope. Of how rose up and handled it all when I was but in a puddle, weak, sick and terrified.
If we were on Sanibel Island or giving birth to one of our blessings, or held up for six weeks post- partum, soaking in the wonder and beauty of new life together, I’d surely know what to write. I would write of the incredible joy of sharing life’s most amazing ‘ups’ with your soul mate, the one God planned on purpose for you to share these things with. Of how deep joy is only multiplied when shared. Of that look in your eyes, that look of profound love and contentment. I’d struggle to find words to describe how utterly amazing oneness is, not only in the storm, but high up on the mountain tops.
So, I struggle. We are neither on Sanibel Island nor in the middle of a hurricane. Life always has its storms, but that’s not what I mean. I think, of a string of sunny days one doesn’t really notice the sun so much. Or deep into spring, does the green all around really strike you like it does in late March? Or, the beauty of the snow come February. In late November, it is haltingly beautiful and causes a deep hush in one’s heart.
I’m just struck by the simple beauty of a weathered love living day by day. I’m amazed, it feels strikingly magnificent. Marvelous and exquisite, just as it is. I am in awe of what a gift it is to ‘do’ life with you. The ONE person on this earth that truly, profoundly and wholly loves me, for me. Praising God for you, for us, for the storms, for the mountains, for the everyday sunshine. Happy Anniversary, my love.