Saturday, August 28, 2010

Letters to Oliver


I can't stop smiling. Our God is so good. Friday, August 27th, Dr. Read's nurse called us with the results to the tests we had done on you.

Oliver....everything came back normal. Every little chromosome in your body is just the way it should be. God made you perfect! God made you just the way you are for a reason!

I can't help but imagine that your doctors are scratching their heads in disbelief because they thought they had everything about you figured out. That you are just another case they had seen before. But you aren't! God is in control of you and what you are and what you will be. God will let you live or take you into His arms. God...not the doctors.

Not matter what the doctors see, in my eyes you are beautiful and perfect and you are my little boy. We were meant for each other, you and I. My hope and joy for you are overflowing. I will carry these feelings with me through every other doctors appointment because this is how I should look at us; with joy and hope, not sadness. You are my joy. You bring me joy with every kick, with every beat of your heart.

Oliver, from what the doctors say, they still need to find out what is causing the amounts of fluid within your skin. This is their main concern. I know we are in good hands and I know everything will be okay because everything is just the way it should be. God planned you for me and me for you a long, long time ago. And He doesn't make mistakes.

You are perfect, my little boy! I love you!


Thursday, August 26, 2010

Letters to Oliver

My Oliver,

I want to tell you all about the people that you will be meeting soon. All the people that impact Mommy and Daddy’s life. All the people that love you! I just can’t wait for them all to meet you because you are such a gift to us. When you arrive, it is going to be like Christmas morning for me….no better! I get so excited just thinking about it.

Let’s start with your Great Grandma. We call her Panchito. Different I know, but it fits. Panchito lives in Arizona. It is really hot there…but she loves it. Panchito is Grammy’s Mommy. Although Panchito has always lived far away, we get to see her at least once a year. She was so excited to hear she would have a 6th great grandchild when I told her about you!

Now for your grandparents. Daddy’s Mommy and Daddy are your Grandma and Granddaddy. They are so young at heart and so in love after so many years of marriage. They have so much love in their hearts to spread around to all of their family. They love their family so much! They love you so much! Grandma and Granddaddy live in Berry, a very small town in Alabama. This is where your Daddy grew up. Daddy loves going home and can’t wait to show you everything! Mommy’s Mommy and Daddy are Grammy and Papa. They live just 20 minutes from where your home is. You are their first grandson! They can’t stop bragging about you..they are so proud. Grammy and Papa are so loving and would do anything for you! Grammy even has special waffles and cookies just for you…how cool is that? You see, Oliver, you are already so loved and we haven’t even gotten started!

Daddy has 2 brother, Shawn and Cory and 2 sisters, Holly and Heather. Daddy comes from a BIG loving family. Your Uncle Shawn is such a great example to your Daddy and has taught him a lot. Your Daddy looks up to him very much. He has taught your Daddy how to be a hard worker and a good Christian man. Uncle Shawn is married to Aunt Misty and they have 3 beautiful daughters. Your Aunt Misty is so loving and calm, until you get her to a mall or turn on an Alabama football game…she just comes alive. We just love them all and they all love you, too. Then there is Uncle Cory. It is safe to say that your Uncle Cory has the biggest heart of anyone I have ever met. He would help your Daddy with anything…no matter what! He is quite the jokester, too. You will love him! Uncle Cory is married to Aunt Kimberly. Kimberly and Mommy are great friends from way back. We have gone through a lot together and she is such a great support for me. She will buy you a ton of cute clothes…she just can’t help herself. Aunt Kimberly loves to shop! Carson is their little boy. I just imagine the two of you now! Daddy’s oldest sister is Holly. Aunt Holly is married to Uncle Jared and they have two boys, Ian and Tucker. Holly is just loves your big sister and I know she will love you, too. She is such a wonderful mother and I know your Daddy looks up to her a lot. Daddy’s younger sister is Heather. Heather loves her nieces and nephews. You will probably call her Taco! Are you keeping up? We have a long way to go!

Mommy has 2 sisters, Chrysti and Kaitlin. Aunt Chrysti is Mommy’s older sister and she is married to Joe. Your Aunt Chrysti is a huge lover of babies. She just can’t get enough of them. She cannot wait to hold you and love on you. Chrysti has taught Mommy a whole lot about being a strong woman and a loving Mother. Uncle Joe is a Marine. You will be so proud of him. He is fighting in a big war so that you can be safe when you arrive. Chrysti and Joe have 4 daughters. They are going to eat you up! Mommy’s younger sister is Kaitlin. You will probably call her Aunt KK. She has a heart the size of Texas! She is so full of the Lord and she will teach you so much about love and faith and hope. She is a missionary and she helps people all the time. She is a blessing to everyone she meets. She will be to you, too. All of your family will be!

You also have a Great Aunt and Great Uncle, Laura and Tim. This is Grammy’s sister and Papa’s brother. Your Aunt Laura calls to hear all about you all the time. And Uncle Tim lives really close, so he wouldn’t miss meeting you for anything!

Mommy and Daddy are extremely blessed to have some amazing friends, which are more like family. You will get to meet Mr. Don and Ms. Brenda. They are just awesome! They would do anything for you without thinking twice. They will be kind of like grandparents to you, too. How lucky are you? You have 3 sets of Grandparents! God has blessed Daddy and me with amazing friends that encourage us and love us and they are pretty fun, too. We have friends that we have known a long time, like Ms. Crystal and Mr. Riley or Ms. Alyshia and Mr. Greg or Ms. Jenny, and we also have some that we just met recently, like Mr. Nick and Ms. Katie. God brought each one of them into our lives at the perfect time. I could go on and on about the people that you will get to meet. Everyone cannot wait for your arrival!

Mommy and Daddy are so blessed by you, Oliver. And we can’t wait to show our little blessing to all the people that bless us each and every day! Get ready!



Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Some Updates

Monday was our weekly visit with Dr. Pohl. No ultrasound this week, which was really a bummer. Zach couldn’t make it so Kaitlin came with me. I swore to myself after the first appointment I went to alone that I wouldn’t do that again. I need extra ears and support.

Dr. Pohl answered some more of my questions. I have been really confused by the FISH results. Don’t get me wrong, I was beyond ecstatic to get back a normal test. I was just expecting to hear that Oliver had Trisomy 13 or 18….I just feel like I prepare myself mentally week after week for the wrong things. Dr. Pohl informed me that it could also be Trisomy 16.

We discussed cystic hygromas, which Dr. Read had mentioned but neither Zach nor I could remember what was said. Dr. Pohl said the cystic hygroma could lead to us having to have a c-section, but reassured me that if this were to happen….he is highly supportive of VBACs and done many! That was a relief!

My baby boy’s heart rate was a strong 135! I just love this good news week after week. We finished off the appointment with Dr. Pohl telling me we only needed to come every 2 weeks now. So, next appointment is on the 7th.

Lately, Zoe and I have been taking naps together daily. I have come to the realization that she is growing, FAST, and I want to cling to anything “baby” that I have left. She is so sweet when she sleeps. I just love it! The last couple naps she has been laying on my tummy. I can’t help but think she just wants to lay with her brother. It warms my heart. We also have started to talk to her about Oliver. I lifted my shirt, showing her my tummy and she just started to give it tons of kisses. She is such a blessing! Zoe brings my mind back to earth. She makes everything okay.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Letters to Oliver

My Dearest Oliver,

I must start by saying how much I love calling you by name. Mommy and Daddy fell in love with your name when we first heard it. Your full name is Oliver Thomas. You are named after your late Pop Pop, your great grandfather, and your Papa. You see this has been a long time coming.

You will soon find out that you are outnumbered. On Mommy’s side of the family, you are our first little boy. You are blessed to have a Big Sister and 4 female cousins, Julie, Kayley, Ally and Rylee to love you and play with you. Mommy is also 1 of 3 girls. Don’t get your feelings hurt if Papa doesn’t know quite what to do with you at first. He has never had a boy. He will learn though, and love every minute of it. You see….you are our gift….my baby boy.

But on Daddy’s side of the family, you fit in just right. Grandma and Granddaddy are blessed with 4 granddaughters, Carly, Katie Beth, Kendall and Zoe and 3 grandsons, Ian, Tucker and Carson….until you. You make things perfect! Don’t worry….I know all these names are overwhelming, but you will love them all and they will love you.

Oliver, you are coming into a world of love, hope and compassion. So many people, from all over the country, are thinking and praying for you….they love you, too! God blessed us with you in May 2010. You were a complete surprise to Daddy and me when we found out we were pregnant in June, but you brought so much joy to us from the start. In July, we had our first doctor’s appointment. We saw you for the first time….it was love at first sight. You were wiggling around and your heart was beating so perfectly. Dr. Pohl let us know that you had some extra fluid within your skin and that he wanted to make sure everything was okay with you. I then went to see another very nice doctor, Dr. Read, who is really good at helping babies like you. He told us from the start that you had a 98% chance of leaving us. Mommy and Daddy have hope in the 2%.

Every week, we get to see you. We get to hear your perfect heartbeat. I am starting to feel you move around some and it just makes everything seem so much more real. You are almost 18 weeks old right now, getting so big. We went and saw Dr. Read again to check out everything going on with you this past week. We found out you were a boy….Our precious Oliver and we found out some other things going on with you. Your doctors are worried….Your Daddy and I are praying hard for you….many are.

Mommy had some tests run to learn more about you. Daddy and I want to know all we can about you, Oliver. We want to know the best ways to take care of you and we want you to be the happiest boy in the world. We got some really good news this week. One of the tests run on you was called the FISH test. I will teach you all about fish….maybe we can even go to the aquarium! Well, this test, it looks at 4 types of chromosomes in your body, chromosome 13, 18, 21 and your sex chromosome. This test would tell us if you had a condition called Trisomy 13 or 18 or if you had something called Downs Syndrome and confirm that you are our little boy. We got the results on August 18th and they all came back normal. Daddy and I love you so much and we were so happy to hear this. We will have all the results from your test in a couple weeks. We can’t wait to learn more about you! You mean the world to us.

I want you to know we are doing the best we can. We say many prayers for you often, you are always on our minds. Saying we love you, just doesn’t seem enough. One of my really good friends has been praying for you, too. God put on her heart to tell Mommy something that helps me get through my days.

We even boast of our affliction, knowing that affliction produces endurance,

And endurance, proven character, and proven character, hope

And hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out into our hearts through the holy Spirit that has been given to us.
Romans 5:3-5

Daddy and I have hope for you that no doctor can change. We love you so much. But our God, your heavenly Father, who gave you to us, loves you more. He chose Daddy and me to carry you, to help you grow, to love and nurture you. God made you just the way you are for a that might be hard to understand, but His reasons are perfect. We will love you and do everything we can for you all the days of your life!

My little boy, I love you and I can’t wait to meet you!


Thursday, August 19, 2010

9 Month Check Up

Zoe Jane had a wonderful check up! Dr. Evans was so excited to see her so chunky!
Zoe weighs 17 lbs 9.5 oz. She is right on track for a 9 month old. She is about 21 inches tall. Right on track, too! Zoe is talking so much! Her personality is just beaming! She has such a contagious smile and her giggles never end.
Developmentally, Zoe is doing great. She is pulling up on everything, crawling, really understand how some toys work. She is having some anxiety and the doctor said there might be some stranger anxiety soon.
Zoe is just perfect! Bias, I know! She got her last Hepatitis B shot. Only one vaccination this time around. We went over all the things she should be doing until her 12 month check up. We are going to start milk in the 11th month and hopefully switching her to her toddler carseat very soon.
I am so happy to have such a great check up!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Doctors Appointment

I have good and bad news....It is always better to end with the positive here we go.

Zach and I went to see Dr. Read, our fetal specialist, yesterday. Leading up to yesterday, I couldn't help but be excited, yet nervous. I knew the visit was going to be full of answers, answers we were trying our best to prepare ourselves for (but how can you really), yet I always have hope for a change.

We started our appointment with the ultrasound technician. I made sure to let her know that last time, I had a very awkward and uncomfortable experience....and that I didn't want this one to be the same. I let her know that we were curious and if she could just point out what she was looking at or measuring, that we would really appreciate it. She was amazing and so kind. We had about 30 minutes of a complete examination of our little one. She walked us through it all....Zach and I hand in hand. We were so excited to see all the organs developing, the heart beating so strong. We were both all smiles looking at Our Grace Baby move around. How can you not be? Once the technician finished, I let him know that the doctor would be in soon and that things were about to get a whole lot more serious. I told him that Dr. Read was straight forward but so kind and gentle in his delivery of heartbreaking news. I made sure to tell him to ask any questions he had and to keep his ears open for the both of us.

Dr. Read started to examine the baby and just as I had warned....things got intensly serious. He let us know right away that he still had many, many concerns for our baby. He started to point out various conditions our beautiful baby had that led him to believe that things had not gotten any better. First, he pointed out that our baby had club feet, that the intestines were looking a little different in color on the scan than they should be, that the fluid surrounding the baby's head was now approximately the same size as it's head, that the nasal cavity was not really forming. If it was appropriate to scream, "I get it"....I just might have. But, I just laid there, hand in hand, trying to hold back tears.

We went on to talk about an anmnio, which I had prepared myself for. He was ready to do one at the appointment if we were. I was floored. I had prepared myself for a discussion....not for a procedure. Dr. Read gave Zach and I a minute. Not even 2 seconds after to door closed, I broke down. Zach held me and we discussed what we thought would be best. We decided to go ahead with an amnio and we were both confident that that was right for us. I want to know everything I can about this baby, whether it is selfish or not. Zach and I cried and said a prayer before the doctor came back in. Prayed for our baby, our doctor, for strength.

The process began. Paperwork was signed, blood was drawn, tears were shed. Making a tough decision is never easy....going through with your tough decision is a million times harder. For anyone who knows me, I am not one for anything invasive....not a fan of needles....not a fan of procedures. This was no different. I laid down and they sterilzed my stomach. They found the position of the baby and the best spot to extract fluid from....I closed my eyes as tight as possible thinking it might take me to a different place. It didn't. I could feel every inch of that needle enter my was painful, physically and emotionally. I could feel the fluid being was unbelievably surreal. I was shaking and crying and wishing it would be over. It only took a couple of minutes...that lasted an eternity.

I was instructed not to lift anything the rest of the day and the following day. I was told there would be cramping and some discomfort. And then we went on our way. Hand in hand.

Throughout the appointment...I am pretty sure I received about 20 texts full of love and prayers. It is so comforting to me to be surrounded by so many who love us. God's love was just beaming. Phone calls began. I tried to make at least one an hour. I didn't succeed. I tried to call whoever I could but I just became exhausted.

We had to find someone to help us with Zoe and luckily my sister is in town. I drove to my mom's house, got Zoe situated and then laid down. I got some good rest after a long morning. Once I woke up, I just laid there, thinking. I kept having this reoccuring thought.

"Be still....I am with are not alone."

Over and over.

I am not alone. God is right by my side. God planned this....God gave me Zach because he knew the two of us...only together...could get through this. God has brought strong, supportive people into our life to lift us encourage us. God has given both of us the most wonderful families. God is right by my side.

Now for great news!

Look at this Baby Bump!

And this God of ours never ceases to amaze me.

Welcome Oliver are more loved than you know!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

9 Months Old

This past month has, by far, been my favorite! This girl is changing so much!

  • Zoe weighs about 17 lbs, wears 9 months clothes and size 3 diapers.
  • Zoe is eating 8 ounces 3 times a day and eating 3 meals.
  • Zoe loves her waffles and pancakes in the morning.
  • Zoe can feed herself finger foods.
  • Zoe loves to bang her tray and watch cheerios fly.
  • Zoe loves to play peek-a-boo with Daddy.
  • Zoe is pulling up on crib and the couch.
  • Zoe loves to climb all over me.
  • Zoe is not a huge fan of avocados but loves ham, turkey, chicken, cauliflower, broccoli, hummus, carrots, strawberries, pineapple, grapes and much, much more.
  • Zoe is crawling!
  • Zoe is having some separation anxiety at night time.
  • Zoe likes to pull up on her crib in the corner closest to the door and wait until you come get her.
  • Zoe loves Mickey Mouse Clubhouse and she smiles right when she hears Mickey's voice.
  • Zoe claps her hands when you say "Yay".
  • Zoe loves to wave.
  • Zoe loves older kids. She giggles right when she sees one.
  • Zoe has started to pull her hair and tug at her ears....I have been told these can be signs of teething.
  • Zoe naps 3 times a day for about an hour each and goes night night at 7ish.
  • Zoe drinks water out of her sippy cup really well.
  • Zoe is really ticklish on her knees.
  • Zoe likes to crawl on the carpet but not so much on the hardwoods.
  • Zoe loves to pull the hairs on the back of Zach and my neck.
  • Zoe still only has two teeth.
  • Zoe has bright blue eyes and blonde hair.
  • Zoe has started to fives lots of kisses....with her month wide open.
  • Zoe spiked her first fever this past month and we think she might have gotten a little bit of the hand, foot and month virus.
  • Zoe loves to open and close books....only because she thinks all of them can makes sounds like one of her favorite books.
  • Zoe talks and talks....she has started saying "A-Di" for everything. She also really likes to scream.
  • Zoe is a squirmy wormy on the changing table.
  • Zoe still loves the water and dips her face in all by herself.

  • Zoe has gotten extremely curious about everything!
  • Zoe loves to make kiss sounds and suck her lips in.
  • Zoe has started to protest when we take toys, don't feed her fast enough, or we walk away from her.
  • Zoe has also started to push away our hands when she is not hungry or push away from us holding her if she wants to get down.
  • Zoe is quite the chunk now! and I love it!
  • Zoe sleeps so good with us now due to her anxiety and I love our naps.
  • Zoe loves to sing and be sung to.
  • Zoe is moving all the can't leave her on any high surface for too long.
  • Zoe still sucks her thumb like it is going out of style.
  • Zoe is really not liking her carseat. She turns around to look at me majority of the time we are in the car.
  • Zoe is so joyful and loves to smile! And this just makes me smile.

Friday, August 13, 2010

Living within Your Means

We have ALL heard these words, but how many of us have actually applied them to our lives. It is so easy to live lifestyles that are so far from what we can afford and that leads to extreme debt and, in the end, unhappiness.

We have too. We have wanted things we couldn’t afford. We bought a house last year….talk about NEEDING things that just can’t be paid for right then. We had a baby last year…I don’t even need to explain that one. But through it all….I believe we have learned and found what works best for us!

On my 101 in 1001, #91 said to leave the credit card at home for one month. Well, I am proud to say that we have not used our credit card in MONTHS! It feels so good. Have we had to say no to things? Yes. Have we had to limit our traveling? Yes. Have we had to limit dinner and lunches out? Yes. But guess what…..we survived and we are HAPPY! Yay!

This year we had many “plans” that are going to have to be canceled. Life happened again. Now once again, we are saving for deductibles and doctor visits and bills rather than saving for extras. We are celebrating our 2nd Anniversary….well at home. We are only going to be traveling once a month….no matter what. We are going to have a crazy November, December and January between 1st Birthday, Christmas and Our Grace Baby. I can’t even wrap my head around how it all is going to work! But it will….somehow….maybe magic….or a miracle!

Until then, I am going to try to stay as disciplined as possible. Zach is awesome….I think beyond Food….he needs nothing. He is so simple. I live pretty simply too…but I definitely stray at times.

At Mass a couple weeks ago, the reading and Gospel were all on Greed and putting our happiness into money and things. During the Homily, Deacon Greg said that in a study people were asked what salary would make their life easier….make them happier. The study showed that if someone made 25,000….50,000 would make them happy, 100,000….200,000 would make them happy. We all feel like if we just make that much more….we will be happier.

This typically means fathers working overtime and spending less time with the family. Mothers now working full time jobs and not staying home. Or both parents working overtime and someone else taking care of the kids full time. All for what….to live a lifestyle that they think will make them happy. Well, this happiness is temporary. True happiness is found in relationship through family and friendships. True happiness is loving and being loved. True happiness is forgiving and being forgiven! True happiness is focusing on what truly matters in life rather than what will temporarily give us pleasure.

The Brother in lowly circumstances should take pride in his high standing, and the rich one in his lowliness, for he will pass away “like the flower of the field.” For the sun comes up with its scorching heat and dries up the grass, its flower droops, and the beauty of its appearance vanishes. So will the rich person fade away in the midst of his pursuits.

James 1:9-11

Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another; for the one who loves another has fulfilled the law.

Romans 13: 8

Put to death; then, the parts of you that are earthly: immortality, impurity, passion, evil desire, and the greed hat is idolatry. Because of these the wrath of God is coming upon the disobedient. By these you too once conducted yourselves, when ou lived in that way. But now you must put them all away: anger, fury, malice, slander, and obscene language out of your mouths. Stop lying to one another, since you have taken off the old self with its practices and have put on the new self, which is being renewed, for knowledge, in the image of its creator. Here there is not Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free; but Christ is all and in all.

Colossians 3:5-11

Can you tell I am finding comfort in Scripture?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Weekends, Weekends, Weekends....

We have been crazy busy every weekend with big events!

July 17th was a beautiful day. Zach and I became Godparents to precious, little Ella Kate. Her parents, Katie and Nick, are such amazing people and a blessing to our lives. I cannot say enough wonderful things about them! And now they are stuck with us forever! We love Ella Kate and can't wait to show her all the wonderful things her Heavenly Father can bring to her life.
This is Ella Kate's older sister, Bailey. Such a beauty!

July 24th, we headed to Tuscaloosa for another blessed day....Ms. Anna Riley's baptism. We started out at Grandma and Granddaddy's house to play in their new pool. I didn't get any pictures, which I still can believe, but we had a great time!

We spent the rest of the weekend at The Hollyhand's! It was so nice to be with my best friend. We had a girl's night with Bethany and Ashley and it was so nice to relax and get back to being with the girls and, of course, stuffing our faces. What do girls do better? Crystal made some awesome dips and finger foods and we all caught up and had a great time.

Are these two not just precious? I love AR's look in this picture!

Sunday, we celebrated Anna Riley and her big day!
And Finally on July 31st, we celebrated Carson and his 1st birthday! I can't believe how fast this year went and how big he is! He is such a character.
The Dessert Box did an amazing job on his cakes! I loved the smash cake!
And so did Carson!!!!Cousins!

And we are caught up! Phew!

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Doctor Visit and Talk About Rough

Monday, Zach and I made our weekly trip to Dr. Pohl.....I must say with Zoe, I couldn't wait for the weekly visits. With this pregnancy, I wish he would give me the okay to see him every 4.

I love seeing the baby every week....would not trade that for the world. But seeing him every week, reminds me that this pregnancy is different....and I get a constant reminder from him that I will not get to keep this baby.....I won't get to watch our Grace Baby grow and become the person he or she is supposed to be. It is so bittersweet. This whole pregnancy is. Be positive!

This week, the baby's heart rate was at great! Having a great heart rate week after week makes me question what this "fluid" is affecting. I know we are still early on....but sadly I want some answers. I know it is not for Dr. Pohl to go into all the specifics on everything going on with our Grace Baby. He gives me scenarios of previous cases of his...trying to relate them to mine. It just depresses me because not one of his previous patients is holding their baby now. Breaks my heart for all those mothers and that I could be one of them.

We danced more around me having an amnio done. I need your prayers...if I get one, it needs to be done before I am 22 weeks. I am 16 1/2 now.

I go to the specialist on Monday....another one of those bittersweet things. I hope he can help me understand more of what is going on.

Today was ROUGH! I don't know why today was different than any other.....I have been doing really well in my opinion. I cry just about every day at some point, but I am entitled to that. Different things just constantly ran through my head all day....things no mother should ever have to think about....things that make me want to crawl into my bed and never get out because then this all will be real......Is this all real?!?!

I called a friend today to check up on her because she suffered a huge loss this past week. But selfishly, I just needed to hear her comforted by her words...the words only another mother can say. I sobbed and she listened. It was just one of those days.

I want to leave you with this.....I know this Baby is only going to bring good to this world. Grace Baby already has! God works in ways we can't understand, but what I do know is that He does nothing without reason. And from what I am seeing already....this Baby is such a blessing, not only to my family, but to everyone who knows our family and has opened themselves up to listening to our story. No matter how rough things get...I go back to the good that can come from it all.

These words really helped me today....I hope they do the same to you!

Let love be sincere; hate what is evil, hold on to what is good;
love one another with mutual affection; anticipate one another in showing honor.
Do not grow slack in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord.
Rejoice in hope, endure in affliction, persevere in prayer.
Contribute to the needs of the holy ones, exercise hospitality.
Bless those who persecute (you), bless and do not curse them.
Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep.
Have the same regard for one another; do not be haughty but associate with the lowly; do not be wise in your own estimation.
Do not repay anyone evil for evil; be concerned for what is noble in the sight of all.
If possible, on your part, live at peace with all.
Beloved, do not look for revenge but leave room for the wrath; for it is written, "Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord."
Rather, "if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals upon his head."
Do not be conquered by evil but conquer evil with good.

Romans 12:9-21

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Doctor Visit and Something Beautiful

We had a quick visit with Dr. Pohl yesterday. Grace Baby's heart rate was strong again, in the 160s. We got to see her, too. It was just beautiful seeing that heart beat and she was moving around a ton. Her little hands were right by her face! She grew so much from our 1st ultrasound only a few weeks ago. LOVE!

But this pretty much sums up the visit. Short and sweet.

I think any time a woman finds out she is instantly changes. My life has changed so much! Finding out I was pregnant was one thing, finding out there were complications was another. It was hard to swallow at first, but all the responses I have gotten from so many of you has made this all bearable!

I have had several members of women's prayer groups contact me to pray for our precious little one. My Pastor, Monsignor Talley, took time after morning mass to pull me aside, say a prayer over me and my baby and give me words of encouragement. I have gotten cards, food, emails...all sending us prayers of hope and love. I am overwhelmed with love. People who don't know me or Zach but somehow heard of our Grace Baby are praying for us.

I would like to share with you all something that happened to me yesterday that instantly brought me to tears. I have told you all that my sister, Kaitlin, is my prayer warrior. She amazes me everyday with her faith. She is beautiful and on fire for Christ. Truly someone to look up to. We went back and forth with texts and here is what they said:

K: Do you remember Amanda, who you met when you came to see me?

(Amanda was one of Kaitlin's camp counselors this summer. She is from NY)

R: Yes

K: She goes to morning mass and prays for Grace Baby each day and today the Priest asked if he could say Mass for Grace Baby and if she would share the story with the Parish so they could pray for Grace Baby too.

(At morning masses, people speak their prayer intentions all present can pray for them.)

God is AMAZING! I am crying as I write this to you all because it just shows me how much God loves me, Zach and our Grace matter what happens!

Before I went to the doctor for the first time, before we got news of our baby's issues, I called this baby my Pop Pop baby....where one life ends, another begins. This baby was conceived right around the time my Pop Pop passed away. So right away...I called it this. I only told Kaitlin.

K: And the part that gets me the most is that Amanda lives right near where Pop Pop did and you said this was your Pop Pop baby and now where Pop Pop lived, people are praying!

R: You are making me cry at work!

K: Oh, sorry. Just wanted to share God's glory with you!

I am not only amazingly blessed by the people around me....or far from me....but by my faith! I love being Catholic! I fall more and more in love with my faith everyday! The more I learn, the more I strive to learn even more....Faith is a never ending can never learn enough. The more I pray....the more I hear from God. The more I receive Jesus through The Eucharist and pay attention to the actual beauty of Communion....the more filled I become! The more in Love with Jesus I fall. I have never felt so much joy and sorrow in my life.

I praise God for our Grace Baby....Because of Her, I want more of Him. I see a different God then I did before. I see Him in everything happening to my family. I see him in every email, every prayer, every card....I see Him in EVERYTHING! And this is something I didn't ever see before.