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Tag Archives: The Big Story

Bricks Without Dang Straw

Husband and I were talking the other night about how hard this adoption thing is.  So.many.decisions.  We are so limited right now, are we even supposed to do this?  Where from?  What agency?  What program?  Boy or girl?  How to pay for it?  If a boy, then we have to move.  How in the world is that even an option?  So much work.  Ugh.  Ugh.  Ugh

Whine.  Whine.  Whine.  We thought we would just get pregnant and have a baby the old-fashioned way.  (Still super glad I’m not pregnant, but for real, would have made this third child thing pretty easy.)

Whine.  Whine.  Whine.  Why in the world do we feel like we’re supposed to have 3 kids if we didn’t get pregnant?  Why have I always wanted to adopt if it’s going to be IMPOSSIBLE?

Whine.  Whine.  Whine.  I can hardly handle the 2 kids we already have.  Am I crazy for thinking someone will give me another one?

Whine.  Whine.  Whine.  Too much work.  Too hard.  Forget it.  We’re not adopting.  Decision made.

Then I read my stupid (I mean, awesome) YouVersion plan.  Exodus.  Lame.  It’s like being in Redemption Group all over again.

Bricks without straw.  Are you kidding me?  How in the world can we make bricks without straw?  Um, well, we sure didn’t make a baby the easy way, so it looks like we’re gonna go the without straw route.  What the hay (haha pun intended) am I talking about?  Well you see, back in the olden days of Exodus, Israel was stuck in Egypt as slaves.  Pharaoh said they had to make bricks for him.  Then he got mad because Moses and Aaron (well, God really) asked him to let the Israelites go.  So he said, make bricks, same as before, but get your own dang straw.  Oh and hell no you’re not leaving.  (loosely paraphrased by me)  How in the world could they be expected to make the same amount of bricks as when Pharaoh was supplying the straw if they had to get their own straw??  (If you’d like to read the actual version, Exodus 5 is where its found.  And I’d recommend reading it…I may have left some stuff out).  And what did Moses and the Israelites do?  Whine. Whine. Whine.

So, yeah, on the very night that Husband and I are like, no way are we doing this adoption business.  Too much work.  Too much money.  Too much time.  Too much hassle.  No fair.  We want the easy route.  Funny that I think pregnancy would be the “easy” route…seeing as it would have been the most painful thing I would have ever had to do.  Crazy how easy it is to convince ourselves that the other side of the grass is greener.

Well anyways, I read Exodus 5 that night and realized that maybe, just maybe, God is asking us to make bricks without straw.  Seems impossible.  And we’re not real happy about it.

A couple days later I had another grand revelation.  Here it is with the setup first, because that’s how I roll and this is my blog.  We have been looking at our finances.  We’ve been looking at how will we move if God wants us to adopt a little boy.  And looking at the two of those, there is no way in the next like 10 years that we can adopt.  Impossible.  Literally.  The money just isn’t there.  We cannot afford to move, especially since we have a 2nd mortgage to pay off, a different car to buy (3 carseats just won’t fit in a Jetta), a truck we can’t sell, a down payment on a new house to save, and an adoption to pay for.  We’ve been thinking about it anyways hoping we can find the steal of a lifetime and so we went driving around looking at houses and land.  It was a nice drive, except in the back of our minds we are getting more and more depressed because we realize that it just isn’t an option.  There is literally no way we could make it all work.  And then the revelation came.

Only when things seem impossible is there room for God to do really big God-sized things.  If there is any human way to work it, then we get the glory.  When things seem impossible He gets the glory.  This is where faith grows.  Only when the rubber meets the road are we able to see if we really believe what we say we believe.

Bricks without straw.  A third child without a third pregnancy.

No idea how the story ends.  Faith that the story God writes for my life is better than the story I would write for myself (per Steve Mizel, Trailhead Church).

Holding Tight at 4 & 2

Folks, you read that right.  For right now, we’re holding tight at 4 humans and 2 dogs.  Not sure if or when that will change.  It could change at any given moment.  And seeing as I’m the world’s worst secret keeper I’m sure I’ll let you know in about 10 seconds once it changes.

No freaking clue what we’re doing as far as adoption goes.  Maybe someday we will.  For now, we’re content with 2 little girls.  I may have even had a minor freak out moment the other day and told Chad in the utmost of seriousness that there is no way in this world we can possibly adopt a girl.  Basically because I refuse to raise any more children with double sex chromosomes.  Three daughters???  Not in this house.  We already have 4 double sex chromosome carriers here…Me, Banana, Bear, and as Bear will always point out, Lizzie (the dog).

And he pretty much ignored me because that’s what he does when I’m clearly being ridiculous.  Although to be fair, I don’t actually realize that I’m being ridiculous in that moment.  It’s not until later that I realize it may have been my double sex chromosomes talking and not so much logic, reason, or the love of Jesus.  (And, no, I can’t for the life of  me seem to figure out why my little Banana feels all her emotions so strongly.  Hmm, now where would she have gotten that from?  **finger tapping on head**)

So imagine my surprise when THE VERY NEXT DAY, yes you read that right, less than 24 hours later God decides to speak to me.  Not audibly, but c’mon, I usually know when its Jesus talking and not my ridiculousness.  He pretty much whispered to me, while I was filing papers and had a giant mess spread all over my bedroom floor (because it’s ok if it’s my mess), that I may have been thinking a little selfishly.  I mean, I may lose my temper occasionally, and not let the girls help when cooking as much as I ought (their mess just stresses me out, folks.  I mean, do you know how long it takes to clean up flour??), and I may not be perfect (hard to believe, I know), and I may not have a clue how to do this motherhood thing, but I am a mother and I do love my girls and surely I’m a better mom than no mom at all.  Could I really be so selfish and ridiculous to think that some little girl would rather stay in an orphanage with no mom or dad than to come live in an imperfect house with an imperfect mom, dad, and two sisters that would love her like crazy.  Love her like Jesus.

So I had to tell Husband the next night that maybe we could still adopt a little girl.  After all, I may been overreacting a tad and I might have been a tad on the ridiculous side.  He may have rolled his eyes at me.  This is why he’s Mr. Steady (or Steadfast as he says…I tell him he’s not Jesus so he can’t have the Steadfast title).  And I’m Mrs. Roller Coaster.  Raising a mini-roller coaster (or two).  Maybe I’ll adopt another mini-roller coaster.  All the ups and downs might make us puke, but who knows maybe we’ll be the funnest house on the block.  And we’ll be so much fun that we’ll say funnest even when we should say most fun.

Oh my goodness, it’s a good thing that when God adopted me it was for LIFE.  And that my ridiculousness won’t get me kicked off the ride.  It’s for life and beyond.  He is steadfast.

And until something changes, us 4 double sex chromosome girls are gonna stick together have us some fun (and drama and yells).

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Are all girls dramatic or is it just my house?

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Um, hello, I’m gonna need some answers over here.

We. Don’t. Know. What. We’re. Doing.

Really, we don’t know.  We are thinking adoption is next.

We’d like to raise a little boy.  Ok, maybe Husband wants that more than I do.  Boys scare me.  They are wild, crazy, bleed, and have a penis.  I’m just not sure I’m ready for all that.

However, in this house we can only adopt a little girl.  Dang.  I mean, whew, sigh of relief, for now.  I doubt very seriously that I’ll get off the hook that easy.

I really want to adopt from South Korea.  They mostly adopt little boys and you can’t select a gender.  That’s out.

Do we want an infant?  Well, not really.  But if we do, we’ll have to adopt domestically.  That makes me nervous.  That means somewhere down the line there will be the I-want-to-meet-my-birth-parents conversation.  I’m not sure I can handle that to be super honest.  Ha, like I’m not usually super honest.

I would love to adopt internationally, but shoot, that is crazy expensive.  And I’m going to have to have a different car, because mine is so small that I literally cannot fit 3 carseats in the back seat.  How will we afford that all?

And from what country???

When?  Where?  How much does it cost?  Can we do fundraising?  Is this what God is calling us to?  Are we totally crazy?  Do we really believe this is for us?  How will our girls handle all this?  How will we handle the travel to pick up our new child?  What if the new child is ugly?  C’mon, don’t tell me that doesn’t cross other people’s minds.

I have always felt very strongly that we would one day adopt.

Husband is still a little doubtful that it will work out and he doesn’t have much hope.  Do I have the faith and hope to get us to the point where God redeems and restores husbands hope and faith?

I have a feeling that I’m not going to get any answers, at least not until we start stepping out in faith.  Ugh.  This is going to be a test of patience and trust and a long journey.  And if you’ve ever met me you know that patience and trust is not typically how I roll.

What next?

Our options are not great.  We can try the Metformin for a while longer and do a round a Progesterone every 3 months.  Or try Chlomid and continue our quest to get pregnant for the third time.  And by the way, if I could live on that progesterone I totally would.  Taking it made me understand why people do drugs.  It was amazing.  Not sure what it did, but it was lovely.  Those 10 days were a definite bright spot.

The thing is, I was completely miserable and maxed out on my capacity to keep trying.  I felt like we tried and did everything we could do for 6, almost 7, months.  I sincerely tried to make it happen.  I prayed.  I trusted.  I went off all my meds.  I was a good wife.  😉  But I just didn’t think I could do it for another 5 – 6 months.  I was so messed up and miserable and didn’t have the energy or capacity to do the basics with the girls, the house, the business, or Husband.  I wanted so badly to go back on the pill and move forward.

But, how I do balance that with Husband’s disappointment?  How do I balance that with feeling so clearly that we were supposed to try for another baby?  How do we reconcile all this?

What do we do?

I told Chad how I felt.  That my choice would be to go back on the pill and proceed with adoption.  I also told him that ultimately I would do what he felt God asking us to.

He still wanted another baby.  But he understood what it was doing to me.  We said 6 months to a year and it had been that time and no baby.  He was ok for us to move on.

Deep sigh of relief for me.  And sadness for us and for Husband.  I went back to the doctor.

Back on the pill.  Back on my sleep meds.  And thanks to this post, 6 months on an antidepressant while I get things all sorted out.  I had been so depressed, so exhausted, and so hormonally unbalanced that it was overwhelming to think about getting everything in my body and head on a normal cycle again.

Husband just shut down for a couple weeks.  Between the crazy wife, the disappointment, and the stress of everyday life, he just couldn’t process through it and shut down for a bit.

And then I crashed.  I think I thought once I started my meds and once we had made the decision to stop trying that everything in me would be magically fixed.  Well, that was dead wrong.  Whoops.  I felt the shock after my doctor visit and pretty much crashed for a couple days.  Literally all I did for an entire day was lay in bed with the iPad and watch Netflix.  I needed help.  I called my best friend who gave me great wisdom.  And then I called my mom.  She came to the rescue.  She kept the little girls over night so Chad and I could go out and have some time to talk and process through everything.  And then I got a full night of sleep.  With sleep meds.  No kids waking me up, nobody making me get up in the morning.

We were finally starting on a new path.  Change.  And no earthly idea where this path is going.

But, as Pastor Steve asks, do I trust God to write a better story for my life than I would write for myself?

Here’s where the rubber meets the road.

…and There’s Even More to the Story…

Ok, so I just agreed to do the one thing that I did not ever ever ever want to do ever again.  Another c-section for me.  Post-partum, not fun.  Newborns, not fun.  Cute, for sure, but so exhausting.  Bring on the overwhelming painful and sacrificing 18 months.  I’m ready.

I pretty much just assumed that I would get pregnant on the first try.  I just knew God was going to make me do this.  Afterall, Chad really wanted another baby.  And I was actually agreeing to it and being obedient and submissive.  I deserve a pat on the back.  My self-righteousness here is ridiculous.

One month passes.  No Aunt Flo.  Woohoo!  Start taking pregnancy tests like they’re candy.  Negative.

Two months pass.  No Aunt Flo.  Yay!  More tests.  More negative.

Three months pass.  No Aunt Flo.  And no baby.  Hm, maybe there’s something going on here.  Call it a woman’s intuition, but I just knew there was something wrong.  Ugh.  That nagging feeling that says, just call the doctor to make sure.  We’d always gotten pregnant in about 3 months before.

Four months pass.  Start the doctor visits.  Strange thing happens.  Like a switch, actually.  I was pregnant.  Well, not by the test results yet, but I always knew instantly when I was pregnant.  It was too early to test.  And then something happened and I wasn’t pregnant.  I don’t exactly have an MD after my name so I can’t give you a certain diagnosis, but either that little one didn’t implant or I miscarried super early.  To say we were disappointed would be an understatement.

Ultrasounds and bloodwork confirm a diagnosis of Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome.  My ovaries are full of cysts.  My hormones are out of whack.  And a whole host of other issues to go along with it.  I’ll spare you the gory details.  Aren’t I sweet?  But suffice it to say that I’m a mess.  And, now there’s more bloodwork to do.  My least favorite thing in the whole world.  But, I did it.  2 hours + in a doctor’s office, a finger prick, and 4 sticks.  I didn’t pass out!!!  Now there’s a miracle, folks!

My body doesn’t seem to want to ovulate on it’s own.  I started taking Metformin to help with that.  Still no Aunt Flo.  That’s not cool.  A round of Progesterone to convince my body to do the right thing.  The womanly thing.

Five months pass.  Negative.  Oh, and if you had any interactions with me during this time, I sincerely apologize.  It wasn’t pretty.  I was an exhausted hormonal mess that could barely function.  Thank goodness for the grace my close friends and family gave me.

Six months and we’re nearing the shortest parameter.  I’m more a mess and more exhausted by each passing day.  This may not happen for us.  More negative.  I think the time has come to revisit the doctor.  Seriously, I apologize if you had dealings with me during this time…I was so exhausted and wrecked that I simply cannot be held responsible for my actions during that time.  Hormones are serious business and can impact one in ways that I didn’t know were possible.  I learned a lot about grace and I’m so thankful for Jesus and the people he gave me to walk through that.  I actually like grace.  (But that’s a topic for another day.  Soon, though, I think.

What next…

And the story continues…

I seriously cried a lot.  I fought a lot.  And ultimately I obeyed.  And here’s how that conversation went down.

Well, husband, here’s the deal.

You want another baby.  Fine.  We’ll try for 6 months to a year and see what happens.  On three conditions.  1 – Three carseats won’t fit in the Jetta and I’m going to need a new car.  I want a Mazda5.  2 – I want to move home.  I’m going to need help with that many kids.  I sure can’t do it by myself.  3 – I need a new maternity wardrobe.  I’m going to need some money.

His response was pretty much a look of unbelief and excitement at the same time.  And with his usual reasonableness he told me it would be cheaper to just hire a baby-sitter than to move home.  The other 2 were understandable.

We’ll see, I told him.

I also might have warned him that this was going to be the hardest thing that I had ever done, that I was going to need his help, and there was a good chance that we would all be miserable.  But, yes, I was willing to try.  And, shockingly, there was part of me that actually wanted another baby.

We decided that we should probably pray about something like this and make sure this was how God was directing us before I went off all my meds.  You see, I was diagnosed with restless syndrome in college and have a sleep specialist that I see in St. Louis.  The bum thing is that he won’t let me taken any sleep meds if I’m pregnant or trying to get pregnant or nursing.  Dang doctor.  I also love my birth control.  I get a little bit crazy without it.

Chad did finally admit that he didn’t think I’d ever actually agree to this.  And he admitted that it was a little scary now that it was actually an option.  We were getting older afterall.  I completed agreed.  We were off our rockers.  Although if this worked like we thought it would we actually would be in a rocker quite a bit more.