Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Noah Matthew

James 1:17 tells us that “Every good and perfect gift is from above”.  We think of this verse when we find our spouse, when we find a job that meets our needs, or when God provides a place to live.  However, there are times we must look deeper to see the blessing.  Allow us to share with you a blessing we received from the Lord that came at great cost.

 A few months back, Mark and I had the privilege of learning that we were expecting another child.  We were nervous, and unsure about how we would handle this life change financially.  We were, however, still very excited.  We trusted that the Lord would provide what we needed, when we needed it!  As the summer progressed and the fall began, we started to plan.  We had seen our little miracle’s heart beating and saw it jumping on the ultrasound screen.  We were looking forward to expanding our family.

Last week we hit the 19th week mark of the pregnancy.  We were almost half way.  I had begun to feel a little movement a few weeks back.  More recently it seemed to have stopped.  I was trying to remind myself that moms feel their babies at different times, and that it could take a little while to feel the baby on a regular basis.  However, over the weekend I began experiencing some complications.  Mark and I decided to go the ER to see what was going on.  I think as humans we hope for the best and assume the worst.  Needless to say, we were trusting God through it all.  Sunday we learned that our little one no longer had a heartbeat.  Nothing can prepare your heart to see your baby on a sonogram; A fully formed little person with no flickering beating heart. Mark and I began to fall apart the moment we saw a straight line crawling along the screen indicating there was no life, no heartbeat.

There were many decisions to be made in the hours following the dreadful news.  Due to how far along we were, it was decided we would go to the hospital Monday to be monitored and induced :/.  Our child’s gestational age was about 16.5 weeks.  It is very unusual to lose a child at this point so on top of our grief we worried about the cause of such a late miscarriage.

Monday morning we headed into the hospital to begin the long process.  We had heard it could take days to convince my body it was time to deliver the baby.  God gave us a fantastic nurse.  I was her only patient, and I felt so loved and cared for.  I could not have asked for a better nurse/ friend to help carry me through such a hard process.  As my body started reacting to the medication, I was very glad for pain meds.  However, morphine apparently has no sway on me (a truly devastating revelation at the time). The pain was so very real; physically and emotionally.  Forcing a body into labor that early is in no way God’s design!  Labor was hard, but thankfully my body responded like it was supposed to, and in a very timely manner.  Nothing could have prepared us for what came next; seeing our precious baby.  For those who have ever wondered if a baby in the womb is really a baby…I have news for you!  Even at 16 weeks, and in the midst of all our grief, we recognized the amazing handiwork of God.  We saw our little ones head, hands, all 10 fingers, feet, toes, eyes, ears, nose, mouth…it was all there!  God is amazing! He allowed us to have a little boy.  We named him Noah Matthew.  Noah meaning (rest, comfort) and Matthew meaning (gift of God).  He truly is a gift!  We cried like we had never cried before with him in our arms. Mark and I prayed and cried our hearts out to God, and then we said our goodbyes.  Noah will always be a part of this family, and we miss him greatly!

 We have learned so much through this process, and for us this journey is really just beginning.  We are taking it one day at a time because that is the only way we’ll make it through.  We are so grateful for our friends and family who having been lifting us up in prayer.  Also for those who have been the hands and feet of Jesus.  Thanks for visiting us, crying with us, and being there for us in our time of need.  We most of all want to thank our Lord and Savior.  Without Him we would not be able to deal with such great heartache.  He gives us strength in the midst of pain, peace in the absence of understanding, and hope to carry on; His love knows no bounds!

After reading this post, surely some will wonder how this is a blessing at all?  We consider this part of our life a blessing in many ways.  These last couple of days we have heard from others who we never knew went through this same heartache, they have ministered to us.  We have cried with strangers and family members alike.  We have felt more cared for and embraced than ever before.  Not only have we felt the love of others, but we have felt the love of each other.  It served as a beautiful reminder of the power of a deep intimate marriage as we cried together and comforted one another.  Our perspective has been irrevocably altered for the better, as a parent and as a servant of God.

But the one blessing we keep thanking God for is that He gave us a son!  In the midst of this situation it would be very easy to only think of our loss, but we also celebrate the blessing of having a son, regardless of how short his life may have been.  It is not for us to know who he would have become, but he was our son and we loved him dearly; and that was a great blessing indeed!

Friday, October 26, 2012

October Review

Team Worth has had a crazy few weeks! In early October we went out east to visit my family in NJ. It was a wonderful time, and we thoroughly enjoyed celebrating Eden's very 1st Birthday! We cannot believe it's been over a year now that this precious little girl has been a part of our lives. She is a huge blessing, and we do not thank God enough for how much laughter, energy, joy, and happiness she has brought to our family.

This is a picture from her birthday shoot :)
Then we made a quick stop up in North Eastern PA to visit some friends. We both strangely felt like it was home :). It It is the area we met, fell in love, had our 1st apartment, and started our family. There will always be a special place in our heart for that area. It is safe to say we miss it! Seeing our friends was awesome, our only regret was how little time we got to spend there. My hope is that as our family grows, Mark and I will have the privilege of revisiting that area to remember the "roots" of our relationship. Right now there is great incentive, but I am hoping that in 30 + years we'll still find an excuse to visit!

Mixed in with all our crazy traveling, our precious Eden has been under the weather. She experienced her 1st ear infection the week before her birthday. Needless to say all 3 of us went a little crazy! I have never dealt with more tears and more moodiness from her before. She had more than an ear infection in her defense. We noticed on our loooooong trip that she was popping through her first molar! We have since noticed she is actually working of 4 of them! Goodness gracious girl! I guess I'd rather a few weeks of insanity then a few straight months. You can being praying for her and us though. She has not been sleeping well, which means neither have I. Mark is working nights, so the pleasure is all mine :). ( Not to say Mark doesn't help other times! He really does...but most nights I am alone.) Eden is still nursing and so I am in the process of weaning, trying to get her to eat more solids at each meal, and hoping to get her on a better sleep schedule. She has been waking up quite frequently the last few weeks.(Most likely due to teething) It is very frustrating! I am tired! In the middle of the night I have a hard time experimenting with  other techniques (CIO, not nursing..etc) because I want her to go right back to sleep so I can too! Lol. However, time is tickin' away. She never dropped the middle of the night feeding on her own, so it's time for an intervention. My goal is to be pretty much done with nursing by Christmas. I desperately want a break before #2 arrives in March. So if you think of us, pray that we'll make wise decisions especially when it comes to middle of the night wakeful periods :). I think it's almost time to just let her cry. But after weeks of not getting good sleep already, I am less than enthusiastic about this. I just wish she could talk and tell me if she is hungry. Due to her lack of enthusiasm about solid food, and her increased activity level, it very well still could be a hunger issue : / . Parenting is not for the faint at heart, that's for sure!

For those wondering, Mark's new job is going very well! He is enjoying it, and just wrapped up his final orientation shift last night! So after a month or more of  working with someone else, he has been approved to work solo. He is nervous and excited about this. Some nights are a bit crazy at the hospital, so it can be hard to stay on top of the work load. In some ways it is sad that orienting is over because Mark is no longer guaranteed 5 shifts a week. During the training period they allowed him to work full-time, that helped him finish training in a more timely manner. However, his position is technically only part time (3 shifts a week). He had heard mixed reviews on how easy/hard it was to pick up extra shifts. We happy to report that he was already able to pick up a few for next week! The Lord is good! Plus he still has his foot in at the other job, and works there about 4 times a month. So although the lack of a permanent schedule gets to me, we are thankful God is providing!

 So as October comes to a close, it is time to embrace the holiday season. How is it that this time of year always comes so quickly? The months just seem to pass by. For Team Worth though, we are also counting weeks. Today is 19 weeks. Nineteen weeks into this pregnancy. So November brings with it the start of the 2nd half of this journey. Many of you may want to ask,  "Are you ready to do it all over again!?" Well, the truth is right now, not really lol. It still seems a bit scary, but you must know we are also excited! We know God will give us the strength in the days ahead to balance our family of 4. We still have about 5 months of preparation, and for that we are thankful! :).

So this is our October : We traveled over 30 hrs by car with Eden, we celebrated a birthday, we visited friends in PA, we've all been sick, we've all lost entirely too much sleep, Mark finished orienting, and we are wrapping up the first 1/2 of this pregnancy!

So whether your October was crazy and fun-filled , or a tough month through and through, remember the Lord is your strength! He is there for you! For each new month brings a new perspective and a fresh beginning. Our hope is that by the end of November we find ourselves even more in love with our great God!


Saturday, October 13, 2012

10 on 10: October

I am late once again with my 10 on 10. I have had a crazy week or so with my darling Eden.  Eden went from an eye infection to not sleeping, to an ear infection coupled with teething. Oh, and throw in a 16 hr car trip. Not that I should make excuses. I definitely struggle with procrastination. Sorry ladies. I tried on 2 different days to fulfill my quota of 10 pictures. I succeeded on 10-12-12…my daughter’s birthday. So here is how I captured it. There was plenty of preparation to be done for her party on Saturday(today), but I also wanted to make sure I enjoyed my day with her. Mark and I even woke up early and reflected back on the day she arrived.
Official Birthday 6:13am :)...Not the best photo, but we were trying to capture the moment. The  room was so dark we needed a flash. Bonus was she didn't even wake up!

Happy Birthday Girl!

Building blocks with Daddy!
Birthday breakfast, pancakes :)

Birthday plates,napkins and more!

A preview of the birthday girl's outfit!

Tissue paper decor.

Daddy and Eden watching Veggietales!

What a priceless look :)


My daughter, the reader! :)

What a fun day we had with our darling Eden! Head on over to Arlee's page to see what she captured this month!