Wednesday, May 27, 2009

11 months

Logan would have been 11 months old today.

It's hard to imagine.

Next month we'll celebrate his birthday with our family and we'll miss him no more and no less than we have everyday since he left us.


Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A Journey

Have you ever read the Bible? I mean really read it? I read a Children's Bible as a child, probably more than a few times. And I can tell you lots of stories from the Bible, but I've never actually read it, word for word. I tried a few times. When I was in high school and I got my first job my mom told me that I should just spend the money I got in my first check so that I would get the enjoyment out of it and see what I was working for. I don't think I spent the whole check, but I did spend some of it and the first thing I knew I wanted to buy was a Bible. I'm pretty sure that most of the rest of the money went into savings so I could buy my car. Hey, what can I say, I was sixteen!

When I bought that Bible I told myself I was going to read a little bit everyday until I could say that I had read the whole thing. I even sat down with a highlighter so that I could highlight some of my favorite parts to come back to later. But Genesis is tough! A lot of it is just so and so begat so and so who begat so and so... you get the idea. And when you finally reach the end of Genesis and move into Exodus, it doesn't get much easier. It starts out like this:

"Now these are the names of the children of Israel, which came into Egypt;
every man and his household came with Jacob. The sons of Jacob 2 Reuben, Simeon, Levi, and Judah, 3 Issachar, Zebulun, and Benjamin, 4 Dan, and Naphtali, Gad, and Asher. 5 And all the souls that came out of the loins of Jacob were seventy souls: for Joseph was in Egypt already. 6 And Joseph died, and all his brethren, and all that generation. 7 And the children of Israel were fruitful, and increased abundantly,
and multiplied, and waxed exceeding mighty; and the land was filled with
Exodus 1:1-7

I never finished Exodus in high school. Then in college I participated in the Catholic organization, at the time called FOCUS. I started going to Bible Studies and spent a lot of time hanging out with some really fun people. I started reading the Bible again, from the beginning, in my spare time. Then summer came and the student missionary I had befriended left to go to another campus. And all of the friends I had made graduated. And I started dating this great guy, who was Baptist and not bothered that I was Catholic. None of this is an excuse mind you, I'm just telling the facts.

When Doug decided to become Catholic and started going through RCIA, we spent a lot of time talking about scripture but we still didn't read it. Then we got married and I started working. We bought a house and then I got pregnant. At first during my pregnancy I was determined to become a better Christian. But then I was admitted to the hospital and told that my baby could be born too premature to live or could live but have severe handicaps. The 12 days I spent in the hospital were not a particularly good time for me as a Christian. I'm not proud of it, but I didn't pray a single time while I was lying in that bed. I was afraid of crying because I had convinced myself that if I really let it all out and cried that I would go into labor again. I think too, I was in denial. I didn't want to give up the false sense of control that I had. Because I thought that if I just laid there and did all the things the doctor told me to do then I could get through this without laboring and have full term baby. I didn't want to give up that control by leaving it up to God or anyone else. Then, after Logan was born I spent a LOT of time praying. But they were selfish prayers. And while I know God doesn't blame me for that, I've come to realize that that's not what praying is about. Too often we pray only when we need something and forget to pray when we've gotten something, even if it's the thing we prayed for to begin with.

Being a Christian is a huge part of who Doug and I are but it takes work. And in the past two weeks we have taken a step in the right direction. We've started reading this book:

And I truly believe this time we'll actually read the whole thing. We've already read all of Genesis and we're a good ways into Exodus. And most importantly, we're reading it together. And we're discussing what we read. This version is divided into sections for each day, Monday through Friday and then a weekend section. Each section starts with a devotional and has questions to answer. Some of the questions are about what you read and others are about issues that can come up in a marriage or in life in general. It's actually been fun and it gives us quiet time to spend together and time to talk. And soon I'll be able to say I did it, I read the whole Bible!

Friday, May 8, 2009

My 2nd First Mother's Day

Mother's Day is this weekend and for me it is the start of the memories. Yes, I was 20 weeks pregnant by this time last year so there are memories from before but most of my memories of my pregnancy and Logan's life seem to start this time last year.

You see, last year was my first Mother's Day. I was so excited because I had just started to feel the baby (remember we didn't know the gender at this point) moving enough for others to feel as well. We spent that weekend at my parent's house because the Monday after we had our 20 week ultrasound and I was leaving for Denver for a week-long business trip after the appointment. We had two ultrasounds before this one but the 20 week one was the first where we could actually see our baby looking like a baby. It made it so real for me and I spent every free minute on my business trip looking at the pictures. I got back from Denver on May 16, 2008. One month later I was hospitalized, praying that my body would not go into labor so that my child could have a fighting chance.

So Sunday is my 2nd first Mother's Day. It's my first Mother's Day without my son. And it's going to be a very hard day. It's going to be a day that will begin a series of very hard days. So if you see me/talk to me and I'm not my normal self or you don't see me/talk to me when you expected to, know that I am dealing with a lot of "Last year on this day I was..."

On another topic, this blog was put together to further my mission to help other Angel Mommies by making teddy bears. And I want to update everyone on that mission. I have 6 teddy bears completely finished. Let me know what you think!

In addition to that I probably have 15 or so that just need to be stuffed. We took down the nursery stuff last weekend and turned that room into a crafting room for me. I'm hoping that it will help me stay organized and get more work done, but I've been so busy since we got the room ready that I haven't done any sewing at all. But the weekend's almost here and I have 5 bears cut out and waiting for me so hopefully I'll get them finished. I can't wait to be able to post a picture with 30-50 finished bears!

Friday, May 1, 2009

The Middle

I haven't really been feeling very uplifted or hopeful lately. I've been suffering from a lot of doubts. I've started asking the questions again, why Logan?, why us?, why me? Why does it keep getting harder? Haven't we been through enough? Are we just not meant to have children on this earth?

And when I start thinking like this, people tell me to relax, not to stress, of course we'll have other children. But the truth is that no one knows that for sure, no one can answer any of my questions. Except God. And He's in no hurry to give me the answers. Because He knows how the story ends. He knows whether or not we will have more children. He knows his/hers/their genders and the exact date and time of his/hers/their birth. He knows the exact time of his/hers/their death. And He is patient.

I am not as patient, I’m a planner. I sometimes think that if I just knew the answers I could be patient, I could wait. But if I knew that on May 1, 2010 I would be bringing home a healthy baby, would I really patiently await that day? Probably not. I'd probably I know I would be counting down the 365 days. I’d be trying to figure out exactly when I’d get that positive pregnancy test and exactly when the baby would be born and exactly when I’d have to go back to work. I’d be planning birthday parties and Christmases and I’d miss a year of my life.

If there’s one thing I’m learning through all of this it is that we have to take life the way God gives it to us: one day, one hour, one moment at a time. I can be very stubborn so it’s taking a lot to get it into my head, but slowly it’s getting there. While I was in the hospital, I was told that every day was a victory. I got twelve of them. When Logan was born the doctors told us that his condition could change in a moment. We got 17 days full of moments. When Logan died, people who had been through this grief before, told me to take it one day at a time. Even now, as far as my grief journey is concerned, I’m doing that.

I say all of this while I hold back tears, because I don’t want to wait. I don’t want to have to be patient. I want to know the answers to all of my questions. Now. But I know my God has not left me. I know He’s telling me, “Be patient, good things will come”. I know that however my story ends, it will be good.

But oh, how the middle hurts!