Saturday, October 30, 2010

Sixteen Years Ago Today...

October 30, 2010

Sixteen years ago, my life was turned upside down...again (for the upteenth time)!

My belly was 10 times its normal size, and the rest of my body...well, it followed suit as well...I was pregnant not due to give birth until November 25.  yeah.  right. 

Just finding out I was pregnant sent me topsy turvy! I went for my 6-month follow-up from Hannah's birth to find out i was nearly 3 months pregnant! My poor doctor had to pick me up off the floor! After all the years we tried to get pregnant with Hannah...???? Gave a whole new connotation to the phrase "it only takes one time..."

So, here it was a Sunday morning.  I spent most of Saturday with what the doc thought were Braxton i counted minutes all that day.  They finally disappeared late into Saturday night.  But they woke me up with a vengeance Sunday morning.  Funny thing, though.  I felt fine as long as i was walking around, but i'd sit down and i was in pain!  My friend, Vanessa, came over and confirmed my thoughts that I ought to go ahead and go in.  My doctor was in the process of moving to another part of the state but promised to deliver my baby before he moved on...unfortunately, he chose that weekend to visit his new home. 

So i'm in the emergency room, and I tell the doctor on call that I want MY doctor.  He tells me that MY doctor is unavailable and HE is the one available.  One of the things I had been very particular about was making sure that there would be only one doctor involved in my pregnancies, and Dr. Wells gave me his word that he would be the one.  So while the doc-on-call and I are having a knock-down-drag-out about who would attend to me, it just so happened one of Dr. Wells nurses was also on call and when she found out I was one of his patients, she paged him...and as promised, he told her he was on his way.  That lovely little angel came in and took over and let me know MY doctor was indeed on his way.  Mr.-High-And-Mighty-Doctor got bent out of shape and left me with the nurse.  During the next 45 minutes or so, my angel nurse and MY doctor are on the phone--she'd already got my chart file and they were exchanging information because though Hannah was delivered by C-section the September before (one month before her due date), I had chosen to deliver this baby vaginally. 

So my wonderful doctor walks in and cracks a joke about my impatience in carrying children full-term, and then proceeds to start pressing around my belly.  When he discovers that my pain is low and at the same place my former C-section was, he looks at me and says--very calmy "I know you really wanted to have this baby vaginally, but we need to do a C-section and we need to do it now" (emphasis on the "now").  Something inside of me knew I didn't need to waste any time following instructions.

I am terrified of epiderals...but it must've worked like a dream, cuz that's what it felt like for a long time...even when they handed her to me before whisking her away.  I don't remember much after that, but according to my dear husband, he had a blast watching the doctor throwing my insides around.

To make a long story short, one of the medications I was taking had thinned the scar tissue area of the previous C-section, and when Rebeka turned downward, she pressed right into that scar...slowly tearing what I thought were contractions were not...apparently she ripped right through there causing me a lot of internal bleeding.  Her embryonic sac never broke which was a good thing, because we found out later that she would have drowned from the internal bleeding--or something like that.

So, sixteen years ago today, our second miracle baby was born that we, without a doubt, know God has great plans for that He would go through such great lengths to bring into our life! 

Sixteen years later, she has come into her own and grown into a lovely young lady.  She is my wild child full of life, full of passion, full of laughter...headstrong and strong willed, she has willed her life to become a woman of God.  She is bright and funny, a lover and a nurturer.  Confident and bold, she walks unafraid of life and basks in all its glory.  Never one to sit still, she has grown her way through violin lessons, ballet, soccer, basketball, track and cross country. 

Today, as we celebrate this milestone, we also celebrate God's providence in all things which allows my cup to runneth over!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

college preview days and other recruiting strategies

The last time we were visiting potential colleges, they were called college visits.  That in 1997 when Jessica was browsing.  Now it's called "College Preview Days,"  and the day is jam packed with all kinds of sessions and food and speeches and food and tours and food.  Did i mention food?  Up until this last weekend, my focus has been on the cafeteria--my first question has been "What are the cafeteria hours?" (Well, except for one visit where i asked about married housing...but that's a whole 'nother blog topic.)  Anywhoaways--Man, some of these colleges serve some great grub and are open 24/7!!!  And up until last weekend, my vote was for Sewanee despite it's $46,000-a-year price tag.  They have the market on wining and dining--that's for sure!

But this week, we visited Belmont...breakfast was continental--thank goodness they did serve coffee.  Lunch was a boxed lunch.  Wedidn't even get to tour the cafeteria!  I'd already crossed the school off my mental list of "for real" choices.

But then, something happened--not exactly sure what. Well, okay, i do know what--the Holy Spirit came barging in--not that He wasn't welcome because there's been an open invitation throughout this whole process (so here come's the serious part)...

So we listen to the President's speech, watch a video and, WHAM!  Wow, this is a school that seems to center on the whole person, not just academic excellence (which they did spend quite a bit of time reinforcing) but personal excellence as well!  Then the girls had to choose a potential major.  They chose--get this--School of Religion!  Where di dthat come from?  (okay, we've already established that answer!)  Though Hannah's logic was that the other areas of interest would have tons of kids and there would be less oppportunity for questions, etc., we agreed it was Providence.  During that next hour and a half, they discovered areas God might be calling them to pursue, and they fell in love with this School.  They were excited to find out about the academic challenges in the different areas for majors, but they were also excited to find out these folks would take the time to help discover their gifts, talents, interests, and strengths and use that knowledge to guide them in choosing their live's careers.

They fell in love the the opportunities available to serve and to grow in their faith.  Did you hear that--EXCITED?!  They were ECSTATIC!  And because they are pursuing an IB degree, they could potentially earn 24 credits upon entrance, or one full year knocked off--that's a savings of $33,000...!!!  Needless to say, Belmont is in the running and has moved to 1st place so far.  So, with 4 colleges down and 4 more visits in the works, this is becoming quite an interesting journey--watching my daughters process, evaluate, compare and pray over their future possibilities. 

Some say a mother's job as parent is nearly finished at this point, but i've found that quite the opposite is true!!!  I'm stepping up my prayer life BIG TIME!  So many things have been added to my prayer "list"--not just generalizations like wisdom, discernment and maturity, but specifics such as which school will build them up into the women God has planned and will lead to their life abundant and what degree pursuit will lead them there...?  and which cafeteria will offer the healthiest food with the most available hours?!!!!!  You think i'm kidding?  That really isn't as humorous as it sounds!  A parent thinks about those things at this point--especially when their eating habits are already on the brink of catastrophe before they've graduated high school! 

But when all is said and done, I am excited for them and this time...because it is one more reason why my cup runneth over!

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Carole King and other Artistry

"Mom, it's a Carole King kind of day!" Hannah exclaimed as she grabbed the cd on our way out the door headed for Goodlettsville, an hour's drive from our home.

Indeed, today was pure pefection!  The artistry with which God had painted this day was vibrant and amazingly alive--nothing short of brilliant.  What a day to be much to soak up and bask in!

As we headed out of the subdivision, we rolled down the windows and turned the music up...she was was a Carole King kind of day.

It's amazing how Carole King transcends all time...every song that plays takes me back to another place, another time. I can remember being something like 8 years old and singing such tunes as "Hi-Di-Ho" and "Wasn't Born to Follow."  Songs like "Jazzman" will always fill my memory with warm California breezes and my first year in high school.  "Nightingale" will forever remain a reminder of the changes moving from California to Tennessee brought about.  OH!  and the "Tapestry" album--"I Feel the Earth Move," "So Far Away," "It's Too Late," "Where You Lead," "You've Got a Friend," "Natural Woman," and of course, "Tapestry." I still remember the portable stereo I carried EVERYWHERE with me...I warped that album playing it over and over.   But that album followed me to college, and there I found much solace when it eluded me everywhere else.

Even later, I brought those songs into my daily life...Keith and I fell in love by such songs as "Up On the Roof,"  I rocked my babies to sleep singing "Child of Mine" and "Way Over Yonder,"  and when the grumpies hit the kids, I have been known to break out with "Beautiful" or "Sweet Seasons!"

So here we are, traveling down the road; and at 16 and 17 years old, both my girls are joining me in singing at the top of our lungs--and they know all the words to all the songs!...songs that cross two generations and turned this gorgeous Fall day into an extraordinary memory! 

As I catch glimpses of Hannah and Rebeka, hair flying, mouths wide open in full smiles, bodies moving to the rhythm, I know my cup runneth over!