Faith, love and miracles …

Despite posting these words every year they still bring me to tears. Happy tears. Tears that warriors cry after winning a long battle. I don’t think I will ever be able to change how I tell this story. To do so would be an injustice to her and to me. And to all of our family and friends who stood by us then and who continue to walk through this life with us now. This story is about our beginning together. The story that we all fought so hard to tell. It is a story about faith, love … and miracles.

When I was about 11 weeks pregnant we were told that she did not look quite so “typical” … I didn’t care. I loved our baby. And I prayed.

A few weeks later we were told, that not only was our baby “not typical”, but that there was a chance I would be delivering her stillborn. I wanted our baby even more fiercely than I had before. And I prayed.

Several weeks later, we almost lost our baby … to which I screamed an angry and adamant “NO!” And I prayed.

A month later we were told that our baby had a “very large hole in her heart” … to which I said, “I don’t believe you.“ And I prayed.

Two months later we were told, “Your baby is small” … to which I laughed and said, “Of all the things that you have told us, this seems pretty manageable.” And I prayed.

Two weeks later, on what was supposed to be a brief doctor’s visit before we headed to our local water park, we were told that our baby was not growing, that she was too small and that she was not acting the way that she should be. We were told that I would be given another amniocentesis to see if her lungs were developed. If they were, my doctor wanted to take her right away. I felt like my body was failing her. And I prayed.

My doctor gave me a drug to speed up our baby’s lung development. The results of the amniocentesis were not what we had hoped for. My doctor told us that our baby’s lungs were not developed, our baby could not breath on her own. Now we had a team of medical professionals. They hoped nothing would go wrong for the next 48 hours so that the steroid they had given me would have time to help our baby’s lungs grow … to which I said, “OK”. And I prayed.

Less than 24 hours later I had a hospital room full of people wearing blue. They were running around and pumping my body full of fluids and drugs. We were told that we could no longer wait. We were told that our baby would not be breathing and that she would be very small and weak … to which I cried in her father’s arms and said, “I’m scared.” And I prayed.

Minutes later I was strapped to a table. I had refused anything that would alter my mental state. I wanted to be there for our baby. It took a long time to get her out. I was told that she was so small that she kept slipping through the doctor’s hands. I kept screaming, “Is she out?!?!” And I prayed.

Then, I heard a cry … to which I thought, “That is a loud cry for a baby who is supposed to be weak, small and not breathing.” And I prayed.

A few minutes later our baby was brought over to me, warmly swaddled, pink as could be, breathing all on her own and with no hole in her heart. (Sure, she had some extra chromosomes, but who cares about that?) And when I saw her I thought, “You are my miracle and I love you.” And then, I praised God for our beautiful daughter.

Nine years ago today, through God’s amazing grace, Reese Lindsey Grace Henry was born by emergency cesarean section. She was 6 weeks early. She weighed 2lbs 15oz and was 15 ½ inches long. My world has not been quite the same since that day … and I would have it no other way.

Happy 9th Birthday to my precious miracle! Reesey Roo you are my JOY, the smile on my face and my WHY! Mommy loves you and all of your extra parts 💕

Well, I hope you all have a day where you celebrate a miracle … and always remember to pray!!!

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Happily never knowing …

We are a busy family. We always have been. I think it’s because there are so many of us, HA! In my 20 years plus of parenting I have never felt like we have done TOO MUCH. I felt like I have maintained a balance between school, fun, work, rest and health … but not this school year! It’s been crazy and it only got worse as the year marched on.

At the beginning of Spring I sat down and looked at everything on our calendar. To say I was completely overwhelmed, is an understatement. There was just too much going on. Some of it was our norm, but a lot of new things were on our agenda and they came with a lot of learning. Then there were other “one time” events that demanded priority. Throw in holidays, a vacation, college open houses and marathon training and you have the past 8 weeks of our lives. YIKES. At the time I took a deep breath and prayed for health and time in each day to get it all done. And I’m relieved to say that as of this past weekend we got through it! Except for my marathon this coming Sunday. HA, again! Some people might think that would be the worst if it. But not me. I’m looking forward to. I’m not saying it’s going to be easy. It absolutely won’t be. I’m saying it’s going to be freeing. I love to run and to be able to go into this week feeling at ease after weeks of stress and wondering how I was going to fit in my training miles … I finally just get to run.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you happily have no idea how you did it!!!

A story about faith, love and believing in miracles …

I post these words every year. I don't think I will ever be able to change them. To do so would be an injustice to her. To me. And to all our family and friends who stood by us then and who continue to share this life with us now. This story is about our beginning together. It is a story of faith and love … and believing in miracles.

We were told when I was about 11 weeks pregnant that she did not look quite so “typical” … I didn’t care. I loved our baby. And I prayed.

A few weeks later we were told that not only was our baby “not typical”, but that there was a chance I would be delivering her still born … I wanted our baby even more fiercely than I had before. And I prayed.

Several weeks later, we almost lost our baby … to which I screamed an adamant and angry “NO!” And I prayed.

A month later we were told that our baby had a “very large hole in her heart” … to which I said, “I don’t believe you.“ And I prayed.

Two months later we were told, “Your baby is small” … to which I laughed and said, “Of all the things that you have told us, this seems pretty manageable.” And I prayed.

Two weeks later, on what was supposed to be a brief doctor’s visit before we headed to our local water park, we were told that our baby was not growing, that she was too small and that she was not acting the way she should be. We were told that I would be given another amniocentesis to see if her lungs were developed. If they were, my doctor wanted to take her right away … I felt like my body was failing her. And I prayed.

My doctor gave me a drug to speed up our baby’s lung development. The results of the amniocentesis were not what we had hoped for. My doctor told us that our baby’s lungs were not developed, our baby could not breath on her own. Now we had a team of medical professionals. They hoped nothing would go wrong for the next 48 hours so that the steroid they had given me would have time to help our baby’s lungs grow … to which I said, “OK”. And I prayed.

Less than 24 hours later I had a hospital room full of people wearing blue who were running around and pumping my body full of fluids and drugs. We were told that we could no longer wait. We were told that our baby would not be breathing and that she would be very small and weak … to which I cried in her father’s arms and said, “I’m scared.” And I prayed.

Minutes later I was strapped to a table. I had refused anything that would alter my mental state. I wanted to be there for our baby. It took a long time to get her out. I was told that she was so small that she kept slipping through the doctor’s hands. I kept screaming, “Is she out?!?!” And I prayed.

Then, I heard a cry … to which I thought, “That is a loud cry for a baby who is supposed to be weak, small and not breathing.” And I prayed.

A few minutes later our baby was brought over to me, warmly swaddled, pink as could be, breathing on her own and with no hole in her heart. (Sure, she has some extra chromosomes, but who cares about that?) And when I saw her I thought, “You are my miracle and I love you.” And then, I praised God for our beautiful daughter.

Eight years ago today, through God’s amazing grace, Reese Lindsey Grace was born by emergency cesarean section. She was 6 weeks early. She weighed 2lbs 15oz and was 15 ½ inches long. My world has not been quite the same since … and I would have it no other way.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you celebrate a miracle … and always remember to pray!!!

From beginning to end …

I loved how this day started. Early. Quite. My ME time. A time to reflect and pray and plan and sweat. And I loved how this day flowed. Busy. But easy. And I love how this day is ending. Relaxing. Accomplished. This was, indeed, a good day.

Well, I hope you all had a day that you enjoyed from beginning to end!!!

A beautiful and imperfect life …

When I pray I don’t ask for a perfect life. But instead, I ask for perfect moments in my rather imperfect life. I do not need an easy life to be happy. I do not need flawlessness. What makes me the happiest are those times when I am with the people I love most, sharing easy conversations, laughs or even stillness, quiet or tears. Those moments when I find myself saying that I wouldn’t trade RIGHT NOW for anything, no matter what situation I may be in. We could be home or on an adventure. At the market or an appointment. We can be going through tough times or good. It doesn’t matter. Opening my heart to accepting that these moments can happen ANYWHERE and under ANY circumstances has allowed me much joy. The genuineness of these moments allow me to feel the closeness that I am blessed to share with others. I appreciate the natural flow of these interactions and the contentment that they bring. They are a reminder that there is a great beauty in just BEING.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you appreciate your beautiful life!!!

A horrible mistake … 

I normally remain silent over anything political but I am so disturbed by the Kathy Griffin photograph that I just have to say something. Earlier today I heard an unverified news story on one of our local radio stations that said Barron Trump saw the picture. All I can say is … OH MY GOD. I immediately prayed that this was not true. You don’t even have to have a child to feel the gravity of this one! If you have EVER been an 11-year old you can imagine how horrific this could have been for him. My heart ached for him! Again, I can only pray from the depths of my soul that it isn’t true and that he was protected from seeing the image.

And this all got me thinking.

I don’t care what side you are on, the Left or the Right. Our beautiful and democratic country allows for our differences in opinions. It allows for those differences and for our concerns to be voiced freely in many ways. It’s just one of the rights that we have living in this amazing country of ours. BUT. Are we using it responsibly? Especially in front of our precious children. They learn from us. They see our emotions. And they see our actions. Good and bad. And we MUST remember this. Those little minds deserve the best from us. They deserve to know that we can peacefully live together despite our different views. That we can disagree and protest without the fear of violence. That we can behave as GOOD HUMANS even if we don’t see eye-to-eye. They should be encouraged by the fact that they can make positive changes in our country in moral, healthy and law-abiding ways. THIS, they should see us do. THIS, they should learn from us. THIS should be their example. Not hate and horror. No … not ever.

Well, I hope you all have a day where you don’t make a horrible mistake!!!