our random trip to california and our crazy year thus far

EDIT: this was written and supposed to be published two days ago!
bullet points are always nice when a million things happen in just a few short months. oh, who am i kidding, even with bullet points this is going to be long. and rough.

  • on december 27th, 2012 we found out we are pregnant!  it was from the Lord but it was also…um…anticipated?  i’m not sure how to explain it any other way.  i felt a clear yearning to have a biological child from the Holy Spirit (before adopting a third…and fourth….and fifth child) and before we could disagree, bam, knocked up.  if you’re counting, which you wouldn’t be, we’re batting .1000 for making that happen.  anyway, baby is due September 4th.  we are planning a home birth.  we will most likely find out the sex of the baby when we have a sonogram (around 20-22 weeks, i’m 18 weeks tomorrow).  we think it’s a girl (chinese calendar, intuition, different pregnancy) and we could possibly name her Lucy.  other than my thyroid issues, everything seems to still be in the ‘low risk’ zone.  this means i should have no problems staying with a midwife and planning to birth at home.  (it does not necessarily mean something won’t happen during labor, duh). i’ll see an endocrinologist in a few weeks to see what they think.
  • as you already know, january was the hardest month of my life.  partly because T was in the hospital so much and partly because i was deathly sick as well, which i couldn’t say yet because we decided to announce the pregnancy to the interwebs at a later date.  i had morning sickness with caleb but oh, man, this was terrible.  everyday at 5pm i would finally start to feel better.  i most definitely threw up everyday, sometimes twice or three times and it lasted until about 14 weeks.  pretty awful stuff.  my poor kiddos.  they started making vomiting noises each time i went to the bathroom.  then, caleb would do it at random times throughout the day and between T throwing up and my sickness i almost couldn’t handle the stress.  but we got through it. barely.
  • february was slower for us.  T only threw up once or twice a week and i was only sick about half the day.  we didn’t go anywhere or do much, though.  we were pretty much tethered to the house.  we made it through since i knew it was just a season.  we found out things were moving along with T’s case and they would have a hearing on March 20th.  they would decide when he would go home.  we just waited and lived on until that day.
  • march brought more health and good weather.  dane and i were able to get away and actually have some fun.  T only threw up about once a week.  we knew he would definitely be going home in the next few weeks/month so we just tried to soak up every moment we had with him.  on march 20th, the judge ruled for T to be placed with a family member, effective immediately.  our case manager requested it be the next day so that we could have time to say goodbye.  i had 24 hours with him after hearing the ruling.  we really did have a great last evening together.  dane decided to call in to work on the 20th.  he played with caleb and i took T to a dr. appt.  then we heard the news and just spent the rest of the day hanging out and packing up his clothes.  the next morning was another dr appt.  dane went to work and i am thankful i had my mom with me.  it was extremely difficult for me to keep it together (remember, i’m pregnant with extra hormones) knowing we would sit at a very long appointment just to go home and hand him to CPS.  there was one good/weird thing about when he left.  i had to wake him up.  he hadn’t been taking a morning nap but when we have a visit or dr appt he does.  he fell asleep on the way home and i had to put him in his crib while i loaded things for CPS.  we chatted for awhile and i handed over meds and his schedule then went to wake him for hugs and kisses.  he was so completely out of sorts.  it was sad to see but it was also a blessing.  with us having so many different people to see in just a few days you can imagine how clingy he became.  he would scream if anyone tried to hold him.  he didn’t really react to mine and caleb’s loving and didn’t scream when our case manager took him.  i mean, i was a total mess but it would have been much worse to see him so upset.
  • in the meantime, we are receiving prayers, calls, texts, love from family and friends which was really great for us.  my mom had been there all week with me (praise God, seriously!) and left around 5:30pm the day T left.  I think he left our house around 1:30pm and then we spent the rest of the afternoon packing up his room while caleb slept so we wouldn’t have to deal with it later.  That night we were sad and numb.  We went out to eat and on our way there Dane and I tried to make a plan for us to get away for the weekend.  our original plan was to go camping but it would freeze at night.  our brother-in-law, joel, had been pestering (yes! very persistent.  i’m so thankful for him!) to use his buddy passes through Southwest Airlines.  we had nowhere we thought we needed to go. even though the flights were free we’d have to pay for hotel, car, food, etc. then i mentioned california.  this was around 7:30pm thursday night after talking with dane’s mom (who had mentioned caleb and i come out the next week to get away).  dane loved the idea of us just picking up and going so i texted joel and he called his dad and at 10pm that night, we had open seats on a 6am flight waiting for us the next morning!  dane was able to take off friday and monday to spend the weekend with his parents.  caleb and i stayed until thursday (march 28th).  flying with buddy passes (standby) is pretty tough with a 2 year old but we could not be more thankful to joel and, mostly, God for working it all out.
  • you’ll see in the photos that we went the beach on saturday.  i mean, it’s awesome.  who doesn’t love the beach?  the waves, the wind, the sun, the sand.  you don’t see anything but God there.  i dare you to look out into the ocean and not be overcome with your smallness and God’s greatness. humbling.  so i know the majority of our friends and family were relieved to see us there.  what a great distraction!  and it truly was.  but, for me, the Lord did not leave me to let my mind wander.  the pain of losing T was still very raw.  throughout the weekend i felt that everyone had forgotten T except me.  everyone had their ‘tasks’ except me.  i felt very….alone.  even when trying to explain it to dane, asking for comfort, he was confused.  as he should be.  no one understood what i was going through and they weren’t meant to.  i felt the Lord let me get to that place of ‘aloneness’, not leaving me, and let me make the choice of how to deal.  after being together with my wonderful man 8 years i’ve learned quickly that he is not my savior.  i immediately apologized for expecting him to comfort me when he was doing the best he could.  i started to seek comfort from the Lord.  i wasn’t sure how to do it because i had never lost someone this close to me.  it is much like a death when looking at our day-to-day but i’m thankful he’s out there somewhere blessing his family!  i began to search Scripture and looked forward to attending barry and lisa’s church service and bible study.  i wanted to be surrounded by His word, His majesty, His people, His love.  when you have a special needs kid, that’s all you think about.  when they’re gone, you can’t just turn that off.  it was still there.  i heard him crying every night.  i would not allow myself to make plans without thinking of what he needed first.  and each time that happened and i realized he wasn’t there, my heart broke.  over and over and over i would pray that the Lord stay patient with me and not leave me.  that He would fully comfort me and heal my pain.  it is still my prayer today.  it is much easier, even being back home and seeing his stuff here and there, because of the tiny stitches in my heart in California.  so, yeah, grandparents are amazing.  the beach is amazing.  fresh seafood is amazing.  but the Lord is greater than all of those things and He has proven that to me in a very real way.
  • you’re probably wondering about caleb.  he’s wonderful.  all those weekly visits with T and his parents really paid off!  i don’t think he fully understands everything but he’s not at all sad.  he knows that T is being taken care of.  something he’s been teaching me.
  • so, yeah, we’re doing well.  the Lord is gracious.

i took photos when we went to the beach and then a random day when caleb was helping wash dishes.  i don’t know.  i wish i would have taken more but these will do. 🙂

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