Grief and Joy can co-exist

This song hasn’t been a stranger on this blog before. I know I’ve referenced more than a few times. But to me, its worth noting again. March 27th… I should be preparing for a 1st birthday party. Instead I’m full of a mixture of feelings that most people don’t understand. So I don’t talk about them. There is a deep-rooted physical, emotion, spiritual wound that suffocates me twice a year with each loss. Not many people understand that even though I am having a perfectly normal, amazing, wonderful pregnancy today… I still feel pain for the others I have lost. And I don’t just feel it… It’s much deeper than just a “feeling”.

“Sovereign in the mountain air
Sovereign on the ocean floor
With me in the calm
With me in the storm”

What’s amazing to me is the difference between last year and this year. But, also the similarities. Last year I was celebrating a beating heart and a lot of hope. It was just a short month later that things went south, and fast. This year doesn’t look too much different. We still have a heart beat, we had a seemingly wonderful anatomy scan (still waiting for the Dr. to call me about results). I still have hope and my heart is still joyful of the work the Lord has done over time. But this year my heart is quite heavy. I’m not as “happy”. Today is harder than it was last year.

“Sovereign in my greatest joy
Sovereign in my deepest cry
With me in the dark
With me at the dawn”

To someone who’s never experienced this before they may not understand. It may seem silly to be weighted down with grief for a day or two. So, I don’t talk about it much. When I do, it usually comes out a little snippy. I’ve never once expected friends or family to remember such things, but then I feel a lot of feelers that it seems like this little life only made an impact in mine. Which I know isn’t true.

As my friend said today, “It’s a complicated mess…. It makes me wonder if this is our body’s way of protecting us.. like if we felt all the grief at once, we’d collapse? So now that we have joy to balance it, we can “afford” to feel the rest of the broken.”

I couldn’t have agreed more. Grief is complicated, it has no timeline, and it certainly has no limitations. It comes when it wants and lingers as long as it pleases. BUT, it’s how we respond to it that keeps us moving forward. It’s ok to not be ok, just don’t be taken captive.

“In your never failing love
You work everything for good
God whatever comes my way
I will trust You

I totally don’t mean to be a debby downer, so let’s get to the FUN part… Little Dude and his amazingness…

Next appointment: End of April (25ish weeks)
Weight Gain/Loss: Too much to me, but most say don’t worry (+14). As you read in my last post this is something that I, unexpectedly, am struggling with. And when I say struggle, I mean like really really struggle. I didn’t think this would happen. In fact before pregnancy I even was joyous over the idea…. But now that I am living it out.. It’s hard. So, from now on – I will not be including this. I’ve asked to not know my weight gain unless it is completely vital to my health or the health of little Mr. I had a surprise “day of” visit with my doc on Monday (hello contractions, a cervical check, and finding out that my bladder has “fallen out of place”, almost like a prolapse) and she suggested I watch my carb intake and limit my portions. Blah… So I don’t want to know anymore.
Exercise: *same* I’m not totally lazy, I promise…. Ok, well I’m just sucking at the whole exercise consistently thing…. whomp, whomp…
Maternity clothes: I think I am finally needing new tops. I usually wear fitted shirts, I’ve never owned a ton of the flowy/vintage like tops, but I think that will be my new style come summer. But I need to keep my work dress code in mind. I don’t mind showing off the bump, but I don’t need my shirts rolling up on me anymore! Ha! 
Sleep: I’m on a winning streak!!! YAY, well except for last night.
Food cravings:  RED ROBIN BONZAI BURGER!!!!!! Still. I’m ashamed. But I’m also craving Thai food something fierce. I get teased often for my lack of love for spicy food even though I am Mexican. Haha, but lately I want jalapeno’s, and Thai food, and curry, and hot sauce, and spicy salsa. I’m really enjoying my new-found love for spicy. I hope it stays.
Symptoms: I’m full. Always. I’m tired, often… Achy back, achy ribs. But otherwise, things are great!
Baby’s Size/Milestones: Little dude is about 10.5 inches long and should weigh about 3/4 of a pound. As soon as I get my anatomy scan results I’m sure I’ll get some exact measurements. He’s working on building up his first poo, exciting….. haha. He’s a busy body all.day.long. and all.night.long. He’s working on peeing ever 30-45 minutes, and he’s busy gaining fat to plump up!
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Movement:   It’s glorious. Seriously the best thing in the world. Once I knew for certain that was him wiggling around I’ve felt him non-stop since. It’s been amazing. Except I’m not sure how people manage to sleep through movement? How is it even possible?
What I miss:  I miss being able to bend over and tie my shoes without feeling like my lunch/breakfast/dinner will come back up. I miss being able to eat a full meal. I miss my energy.
What I’m loving:  Growing a baby, how amazing my hair feels and looks. I love that my belly is getting more and more round. I’m loving how active this dude is. His little feisty personality kills me.
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What I’m looking forward to:  I’m SOO looking forward to painting/decorating Little Mr’s room. Looking forward to announcing a name. Looking forward to so so much. A life full of baseballs, tackles, snuggle sessions, and raising a man who loves Jesus. OH, and my appointment with our Doula!
Baby Purchases:  I just found out via text that my hubs purchased him some Carolina Panthers onesies. I’m excited!!! Baby Gates are next!
Best moment this week: The anatomy scan. Little dude was twirling, kicking, punching, and wiggle worming his way around my whole tummy. It was comical. I had to get up a few times to get him to move a certain way. It was entertaining to say the least.
Hello 21 weeks, I’m excited you’re here and yet again, thankful that I’ve been blessed to experience everything this far!
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Half Way Cooked!

I’m late, or I’m lazy. Or a mixture of both.

**Also, I think I’ve spent far too much time battling the format of this stupid post, so….. I give up. It’s sloppy, I don’t know how to fix it, and that’s ok.

Ok, for reals though. Last week kicked my booty at work so I found that my spare time didn’t involve blog updates.

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So, lucky you guys, you’ll get 2(!!!) updates from me this week.

I’m just gonna get straight to it this post, because really, no one wants to hear about my job and how it sucked out all my energy last week, and most likely this week too….. Because other than work, I have no “real” fun updates or things to tell you.

Next appointment: THIS WEEK!!!!!!!!!! – This will include the full anatomy ultrasound.

Weight Gain/Loss: I have no idea 🙂 And I like it that way. I’ve never been one who struggles with weight. I’ve battled my fair share of body image issues, but I’ve typically been a healthy weight my whole life. But, I’ve noticed that for the last several weeks I have been OVERLY concerned with the amount of weight I’ve gained and will continue to gain. It’s odd. I knew it was going to happen, but for some reason, I am having a very difficult time accepting and loving and embracing the weight that keeps coming.

Exercise: *same* Yeah, I suck. But we’ve gone on a couple of walks and I still do my once a week yoga. So, I’m not totally lazy.

Maternity clothes: Mostly normal tops, however I am noticing the battle to get dressed every day keeps getting more and more interesting – or entertaining, depends on who’s watching…. Pants/leggings/skirts all maternity. Especially at the end of the day!                                 Sleep: *same* Terrible. I need a million pillows, I need a heat pad, I need space. I have a feeling this is going to continue.

Food cravings:

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RED ROBIN BONZAI BURGER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Eat your heart out! My husband was so gracious and didn’t make a single comment on how quickly I ate that burger and the fries with just able every ounce of ranch they gave me. He also was super sweet not to say anything about the heart burn and OH MY GOSH I AM SO FULL I COULD BARF moments I had about an hour later. Was it worth it? You bet your bottom dollar. The challenge now? How on earth do I tell my brain this is not something that can be eaten on a regular basis…… My poor brain. Deprived.

Symptoms: Headaches are pretty much non-existent now (thank you LORD), my back gets tired super quickly, I’m still tired 99% of the time. I always heard that the 2nd tri is super dreamy. Don’t get me wrong, I love that God has blessed me with the privilege to do this whole pregnancy thing. But if I can be honest, I am so uncomfortable 99% of the time. I could seriously present to you a laundry list of the aches and pains and discomforts. BUT, like I said, this is an honor and one that I’ve willingly asked for. It’s just not dreamy like others describe it as. It’s got its own dreaminess, but not what I thought it would be.
 Baby’s Size/Milestones: Baby is now measuring about the size of a Belgian Endive……….. What the heck is that?! How about 10 inches and about 10.5 ounces. That sounds better. He is swallowing, kicking, rolling, punching. I’ve read on a few occasions that babe is even emptying his bladder routinely now. Lips, eye lashes, hair and teeth buds are forming. And gaining fat, atta boy. Get nice and chunky for me please. Ok, maybe not too chunky, cause I do need to deliver you….
Movement:  Best.thing.in.the.entire.world. Babe can be felt and seen on occasion from the outside of my tummy, and he likes to party. Seriously, mostly at night. Ok, and during the day….. I’m still learning to sleep through his little parties. I get sad when he stops moving. Every one of my doctors said I wouldn’t feel anything at all until well after 20 weeks. I love that they were all wrong and my boy does what he wants.
What I miss: hmmm… a normal feeling rib cage….  Energy… I don’t know. I don’t think I really miss anything right now. sleep…. I do miss sleep….
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What I’m loving:  Growing a baby. Poking little dude. Calling him by name. Day dreaming about a life with baseballs and swimming lessons, and raising a little miniature version of my hubs. Creating a registry.
What I’m looking forward to:  *same* Letting my hubs feel movement once I get bigger. Looking forward to painting Little Mr’s room. Looking forward to announcing a name. Looking forward to so so much. A life full of baseballs, tackles, snuggle sessions, and raising a man who loves Jesus. A baby shower. I had thought I wasn’t going to have one, and then a few people stepped up and said it was going to happen. So I’m looking forward to celebrating little man. My first meeting with our Doula. YIPPY!!! Can’t wait!
Baby Purchases:  Nada.  We’ve been gifted so many things and I love how generous people are. I am just blown away. I think we’re waiting to really purchase more things until we at least get a start on little man’s room. We haven’t touched it. We should, but we haven’t. We probably should start.
Best moment this week: Watching little dude kick me from the outside. Eating my beloved burger. Going to a concert and feeling little one rock out to some worship tunes. 🙂
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Hello 20 weeks, I’m excited you’re here and thankful that I’ve been blessed to experience everything this far! I’m thrilled to be on the other side of 20 weeks! (Today is 20+4, pic was taken on 20w)
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Happy Monday 🙂 Also, don’t forget, I am still running our fundraiser for our March of Dimes team. Please consider donating. If you have any questions, feel free to email me: mlwalker0909@gmail.com
Or you can make a tax deductible donation here:
I’ve reach $100 of my $250 goal. I’d like to raise more, but I think $250 is more reasonable for me 🙂

March of Dimes

This year my boss has asked me and my amazing co-worker to be Captains of our Annual March of Dimes fundraising team. At first I was excited to jump right in and do whatever it took. Then I realized the date of this event and I spiraled down into a little ball.

April 25.

All my dreams and plans and fundraising ideas fled my mind and I was absorbed back into some painful, yet bitter-sweet, memories. If you haven’t been following along for too long, April 25th was the day we finally said our sweet goodbye’s to our boy Colton. It was a traumatic and lonely day for me and my husband. It was sad and gutted me to our core, and a year later I still feel like I have major holes in my heart.

As we’ve healed and accepted our new normal I decided that instead of seeing this task as burden I would use this as a great opportunity to share my story and honor Colton, as well as all our little ones who never made it here. I would take this opportunity to raise money for awareness. Where I work, I am honored that I set up and help provide the space for the March of Dimes board members to use for monthly meetings. Because of this, I actually received so much support and information from some of their board members and employees. They gave me so many resources and even a genetic counselor (who sat on the Board) offered to sit with me and look at my genetic testing as a second opinion. How could I not return the favor and show my love and support for all they’ve done for me!?

So I never do this, but I ask that you consider, pray, talk to your spouse or significant other, and see if you are able to support our cause and donate to our team. If you are unable to give financially, I ask that you join us in celebration of Colton on April 25! In the past we have released balloons on the anniversary date, and I believe this tradition will follow us all the days of our lives. Also, be praying for us on April 25. We have been so encouraged and filled to the top with love and support and I can’t tell you how uplifting it is to know people are praying. It’s always a hard day when anniversaries come around. They are… bitter-sweet. Even more so when you have a babe healthy in your belly. It’s an ever-present reminder of what I miss, but also a blessing to know that it seems as if we finally have our babe that we’ll get to hold.

Thank you in advance for your support!

My Little Cashew is my reason why. He is my reason for Walking!

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If you have any questions or need the link to donate to our team please email me at: mlwalker0909@gmail.com
I’m not gonna lie people, these weekly update things are getting BORING! Mostly everything is the same, so feel free to skip it. I just don’t want to forget for myself. There are some changes though. I am technically 18+6 today, but here is my 19 week update!
Next appointment: End of March (21 weeks) – This will include the full anatomy ultrasound.
Weight Gain/Loss: *same* I officially hate this question….. So, I was WAY wrong. Since pre-pregnancy I am up a total of 9 pounds. I thought this was a lot, but the nurse said that it was well within normal… YIKES, no matter how prepared you think you are to watch the scale move UP, it still stings a little when you see a weight you’ve never weighed before in your life.
Exercise: *same* Yeah, I suck. But we’ve gone on a couple of walks and I still do my once a week yoga. So, I’m not totally lazy.
Maternity clothes: *same* – I can’t say yes, but I can’t say no…. Mostly normal tops (although I’ve noticed they’re starting to roll up on occasion haha). Pants/leggings/skirts all maternity. Especially at the end of the day!
Sleep: *same* Terrible. I need a million pillows, I need a heat pad, I need space. I have a feeling this is going to continue.
Food cravings:  RED ROBIN BONZAI BURGER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Seriously though, I still have not yet indulged in this craving and I want to so bad. Soon enough, I will have one and it will not be a pretty sight. Whomever I am with better not stare too bad, cause I will be in complete shovel mode I’m sure of it!
Symptoms: Headaches are better, my back gets tired more quickly, I’m still tired 99% of the time. My knees bug me if I am on my feet for longer periods of time, my appetite is still good but I’m noticing my portions are getting smaller cause I feel full really quickly. But I also noticed (probably because I am SO short-waisted) that my uterus is already about 2 inches above my belly button. Bending over isn’t my favorite, sleep.. I want more sleep. Also, WIN – My skin is doing better and better each week, I hope it stays that way!
Baby’s Size/Milestones: Baby is now measuring about the size of a zucchini. Now if you live in Washington State and grow your own, I can promise you my babe is not that large yet, but I am assuming the store-bought size 🙂 Kicking, rolling, punching, twisting, hiccupping, and swallowing still. Baby should weigh at about 9 oz and is working on sprouting tiny hairs on his head (I hope he’s a blonde like my hubs!!).
Movement:  I can now say that without a doubt I feel movement. It’s glorious. Seriously the best thing in the world. I can’t wait for it to be consistent!
What I miss:  I miss being able to bend over and tie my shoes without feeling like my lunch/breakfast/dinner will come back up. I miss Blue Moon. Not sure why…. That sounds odd, but maybe cause it’s usually really cold and really refreshing when it’s nice outside. That’s about it!
What I’m loving:  Growing a baby, how amazing my hair feels and looks. I’m loving that I *KNOW* I’m feeling more and more movement. I’m loving that now I don’t just look kinda chubby. My belly is getting more and more round. It’s fun to watch and even more fun to hear my husband comment on it. We tend to poke it a lot.
What I’m looking forward to:  *same* Letting my hubs feel movement once I get bigger. Looking forward to painting Little Mr’s room. Looking forward to announcing a name. Looking forward to so so much. A life full of baseballs, tackles, snuggle sessions, and raising a man who loves Jesus.
Baby Purchases:  CLOTHES, ok, so we didn’t buy a ton more. But we just needed to buy the cute ones. BUT, this is what I want to purchase next, or register for, or something. Haha, I am IN LOVE with this diaper bag. It has three options for carrying (back-pack, over the shoulder, and across the body).
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Best moment this week: Feeling little dude move more than once a day. Feeling more energy. And completely unrelated to baby – working on our Easter church service worship set. I can’t wait!!
Hello 19 weeks, I’m excited you’re here and thankful that I’ve been blessed to experience everything this far!
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I Choose You

Let the bough break, let it come down crashing
Let the sun fade out to a dark sky
I can’t say I’d even notice it was absent
Cause I could live by the light in your eyes

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I’ll unfold before you
What I’ve strung together
The very first words
Of a lifelong love letter

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Tell the world that we finally got it all right
I choose you
I will become yours and you will become mine
I choose you
I choose you

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There was a time when I would have believed them
If they told me you could not come true
Just love’s illusion
But then you found me and everything changed
And I believe in something again

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 My whole heart
Will be yours forever
This is a beautiful start
To a lifelong love letter

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Tell the world that we finally got it all right
I choose you
I will become yours and you will become mine
I choose you
I choose you

We are not perfect
We’ll learn from our mistakes
And as long as it takes
I will prove my love to you

I am not scared of the elements
I am under-prepared, but I am willing
And even better
I get to be the other half of you

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Tell the world that we finally got it all right
I choose you
I will become yours and you will become mine
I choose you

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We’re Welcoming a perfect little boy into our world early August.

Next appointment: End of March (21 weeks) – This will include the full anatomy ultrasound.
Weight Gain/Loss: *same* I officially hate this question….. So, I was WAY wrong. Since pre-pregnancy I am up a total of 9 pounds. I thought this was a lot, but the nurse said that it was well within normal… YIKES, no matter how prepared you think you are to watch the scale move UP, it still stings a little when you see a weight you’ve never weighed before in your life.
Exercise: Yeah, I suck. But we’ve gone on a couple of walks and I still do my once a wee yoga. So, I’m not totally lazy.
Maternity clothes: *Same* – I can’t say yes, but I can’t say no…. Mostly normal tops (although I’ve noticed they’re starting to roll up on occasion haha). Pants/leggings/skirts all maternity. Especially at the end of the day!
Sleep: Terrible. I need a million pillows, I need a heat pad, I need space. I have a feeling this is going to continue.
Food cravings:  RED ROBIN BONZAI BURGER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I need it in my life, ASAP. With endless steak fries and ranch please.
Symptoms: HUNGRYTired. Headaches, oh my gosh the headaches. They turn into full-blown migraines about 3-5 times a week. Dizzy, lots of dizzy. Growing a belly!!
Baby’s Size/Milestones: Baby is now measuring about 6 inches long and weighing just over 7 ounces. My app says about the size of a sweet potato?!? Haha, ok, cool. Kicking, rolling, punching, twisting, hiccupping, and swallowing 🙂 My perfect babe.
Movement:  I can now say that with out a doubt I feel movement. It’s glorious. Seriously the best thing in the world.
What I miss:  I miss my skin…. I don’t want to look like an acne-prone teenager anymore. I also miss having the EXTRA energy to be a good housekeeper, although I have noticed I’m getting better, I think. That might be a better question for my man to answer, haha! Although I only ever drink decaf coffee, I’ll admit the extra boost of sugar in the mornings can be a nice pick-me-up!
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What I’m loving:  Growing a baby, how amazing my hair feels and looks. I’m loving that I *KNOW* I’m feeling more and more movement. Love the fact that my belly is progressively getting larger and larger!
What I’m looking forward to:  Letting my hubs feel movement once I get bigger. Looking forward to painting Little Mr’s room. Looking forward to announcing a name. Looking forward to so so much. A life full of baseballs, tackles, snuggle sessions, and raising a man who loves Jesus.
Baby Purchases:  CLOTHES, ok, so we didn’t buy all of this. Some was gifted, some we already had before we knew I was pregnant. But we have a nice selection growing 🙂 I love it!!!!!
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Best moment this week: The gender…. Wow. I’m speechless and just so amazed and overwhelmed with the amount of support we have. It never ceases to amaze me how many people are cheering for little man as much as we are.  Also, we took some cake pops to our RE and spent some time visiting with them and updating them on the baby they helped us make. I miss that place, so much. I loved my Dr so much and the nurses and the whole staff. I wish I could see them for my OB care too. But it was a nice visit and certainly worth highlighting.
Hello 18 weeks, I’m excited you’re here and thankful that I’ve been blessed to experience everything this far! Although, I think I shrank in size, or maybe just rounded out? Not sure… But it’s still hardly there!
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