Tuesday, September 29, 2009

My Soul Sings

My Soul sings...the chorus to one of my favorite songs (written by Delirious) and so often the description of my heart. My soul has begun a new song, one of thanksgiving and gratitude for what was taken away has been given back and what we thought could be impossible became possible. My only response is for my soul to sing to God for His faithfulness to heal and provide.
But let me tell you one of the reasons for why my soul sings.

About the time we got back from Nicaragua we decided it was time to take the plunge and go off birth control. Yikes! Scary step but one we felt ready for. We thought everything would go smoothly but apparently that was not to be the case. I had one cycle on my own and then normalcy stopped all together. At first we thought I was pregnant but several negative pregnancy tests determined I was not. Armed with optimism, I went to the doctor hoping that it was just because I had been on birth control for too long and my body needed more time to normalize on its own. Thus began my journey of staring one of my biggest fears in the face: infertility. After several trips to the doctor it was determined that I have Poly cystic Ovaries essentially classifying me as unable to get pregnant without the help of fertility medication.

Needless to say this news floored me. I have heard of people who have trouble getting pregnant or have infertility issues but never in a million years did I imagine that would be me. However, as I wrestled I experienced one of the most amazing journeys of my life.

To back up a little, the first month we went off of birth control I had a dream. One of those dreams that after you wake up you think to yourself was that really just a dream? The dream in itself was nothing particularly dramatic but the words that were spoken were clear as a bell. In this dream I was at a prayer meeting. (In my dream, and in real life, I had not told anyone we were going off birth control.) As we were praying every single person in the room spoke up saying to me "Mary Frances, God wants me to tell you that you don't need to be afraid, He will open your womb and you will get pregnant." When I woke up my first thought was it was just a dream, something my subconscious came up with since I was a little worried about the "what ifs" as we went off birth control. So, I let it go. But as time progressed and I started having problems the Lord reminded me of this dream, whispering to my heart that this was more than a dream, it was truth, a promise to hold on to.

Then in the spring I came upon a name that caught my interest. I am the kind of person who wants to name our child something unique but meaningful. I had never heard this particular name before and I tucked it away for that "some day" in the future. One day during a quite time in which I was wrestling with understanding what God was doing with my health, the name came back to me. I decided to look up what the name meant and as I did so another whisper to my heart..."This will be the name of your child". Once again, I hesitated thinking I might be making it up, that I was just being a silly girl who wants to have a baby. But then I read the meaning of the name: "The Lord has answered our prayers." I was hesitant to tell Josh about this at first, because I was afraid to hope, timid to call what I had discovered "from the Lord". But the more we talked about it, the more we came to realize that this name signified more than just the healing of my body, but also the perfect timing of God.

And so the journey continued. In May the official word came...I had PCOS and my worse nightmare had come true. Even though I had these two promises, I cannot pretend like I did not wrestle that there were not tear filled days as I looked at the potential loss of dreams. Yes people get pregnant all the time on fertility medication but I never imagined that that would be me, that there would be something physically wrong with me that would hinder me from having children. But as I cried I still felt sustained to believe that God would heal my body and we wouldn't have to use medication. So as we talked through options with my doctor, we decided that we would hold off on medication till the end of summer. If things had not changed we would revisit the conversation and start considering medicinal options.

We never got that far. Two months ago I experienced my first miracle as two pink lines showed up on the test. The Lord was once again true to His word, He has touched my body and enabled me to get pregnant!

Today I am a little over 8 weeks along, with a due date of May 10th. We got to see our little seahorse via ultrasound today in which we saw it's heart beating and its tiny little limb buds move. This last week I had been wrestling with fear, fear that this little baby was too good to be true, not wanting to get too attached to it in case it wasn't for real. But as I watched the screen portray this little gift, my soul sang once again.

Praise the Lord for His goodness to us.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Forming of a Fisherman

If any of you reading this blog know my husband, one thing you will know about him is that he loves all things outdoors...particularly hunting and fishing. He gleaned this love from his Father who may love all things outdoors even more than Josh does. Therefore, to both these wonderful men it is necessary that this love be passed down to younger generations. There is no age requirement to begin cultivating this love of nature, dirt, sweat, gear, and wildlife. If you are of the male gender it is only natural that it begin when you are old enough to hold a pole in your hand. The only requirements are the following: 1) You understand a pole belongs in the hand and not in the water. 2) You can recognize that the magical hook on the end of the pole will eventually produce a fish. Apparently Jude has met these requirements for this weekend marked his introduction to fishing.

For about 20 minutes Jude sat in Pop's lap enraptured by the process which entailed throwing a yellow bobber with a wriggling worm on the end into the water, waiting for several minutes (in which Jude said Fiiishy! numerous times) till a flopping fish is pulled up to the dock. The first few times this occurred, Jude approached the fish with caution, until about the 5th time where he boldy grabbed the fish with his chubby little hand. At one point, Pop let Jude take the reigns. Understanding the concept that one must throw the line into the water in order to catch a fish, he proceeded to mimic that process Jude style, which entailed slapping the tip of the pole violently in the water all the while saying Fiiishy. Naturally this did not produce any wriggling fish on the end of his pole, but that it was it Jude was hooked.

Every good fisherman needs a takle box.

Waiting patiently for the fish to come.

We got one!


Jude and his 1st fish.

Chubby cheeks

Micah immitating Jude's life jacket chub.

Masked Fascination

Help! Help!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Blast to the Past

After gallivanting in Winthrop for a better part of the weekend, we spent the last day of our glorious three day weekend up at Josh's parents cabin on Lake Roesiger in the much more local Monroe, WA. Although it was raining almost all day we had a blast enjoying the company of some of our favorite people: the Izzards and the Schweens.

Natalie Izzard

Tyson Schween (someone is teething if you can't tell by the hand in the mouth)

Jackson Izzard

We decided to be a little unconventional in some of our choices for conventional fun, i.e. board games and movies. Instead of playing something new and exciting like Settlers of Catan, Apples to Apples or Cranium, we played Scattergories. About two rounds into this delightful game we all realized how much brain power this game requires but how incredibly fun it is. We also decided to revisit our childhood and watch Free Willy (the original) on VHS. I don't even remember the last time I watched a VHS. We experienced things like having to wait for the tape to rewind, the pause button only pausing for so long till the machine gives up and lets the movie go on, and the amazing computer graphics of the 90s. All in all it was an awesome day soaking up good friendship, entirely too much food, and laughing at what used to be.

Ben and Josh braved the cool waters of the lake during the one sun break of the day.

Me and Squeakers (Tyson Schween)

Winthrop With the Bryans

The view from above Harts Pass

We decided to take advantage of the long weekend to go on another trip across the mountain to our beloved Mazama/Winthrop. This time we had the pleasure of being accompanied by our dear friends Jonah and Sara Bryan, who are three weeks into their marriage. Jonah is like a brother, someone we have journeyed with through undergrad studies and beyond. We are so excited for he and Sara to join us in a new journey...that of being married. We had a great weekend spent hiking, chilling in the cabin, and exploring the quaintness of Winthrop.

Jonah and Josh taking in the view.

Mountain Blue Bell

My Mountain Man

View of the Mazama Valley

Jonah and the Giant Peach (seriously that sucker was over a pound!)

Ode to Casey's Garden

I love love love the camera Josh got me for my birthday back in June. As I have been acquainting myself with the inner workings of the not so automatic options of this camera, my dear sister-in-laws garden became the object of my attempts at manipulating the aperture. So good job Casey! Your produce is tasty (minus that one cucumber we had earlier this summer) and quite photogenic. Not to mention you have the cutest farmer helper (Jude) ever!