May 30, 2014

Pink Hydrangeas

We have been blessed by our community in so many ways in the past year. Often times there is no note, there is no name left to tell who did such a wonderful thing. This one means more than he or she even knew. So if you are reading this and it was you, I want you to know how much you blessed this momma. Thank you.

March 27, 2014

After the drive home from work, I pulled up to my house and I saw a beautiful pink hydrangea on my front porch. It was bright pink, a most beautiful pink, and it was planted in a bright yellow pot, the perfect yellow.

A wonderful song was playing in my car and I started to cry. I saw that there was a note beside the plant and I knew that a friend had brought it to us. I got out of the car and stared at the plant. It was absolutely beautiful. I looked down at the note and I scooped it up and brought it with me back to the car. I let the music play as I slipped open the note and read it quietly.

The note was not signed. But it was a recognition of our Hannah. It was a recognition that it has been 100 days since Hannah was born. I quickly checked my calendar because all this time I had been thinking that day was tomorrow. I counted each day by hand and I realized that my counter has been wrong. Today it's been 100 days. One hundred days of grieving and praising the Lord for our Hannah.

Of course I was crying and then I realized. Today. Today we found out we're having another baby. And today is 100 days since Hannah. It's like the Lord was reminding us of his goodness, of his sovereignty, of his delicate, detailed, intentional planning.

We look to the future while of course remembering the past. I don't believe we'll ever really stop grieving. I can imagine when we hit milestones of our other children how we'll remember our first baby girl. I think about how you won't see Hannah's name on any program, she won't be listed in the bridesmaids or the groomsmen of her brothers' or sisters' weddings. When we take 'family' pictures and people comment on our beautiful family, I'll always know one is missing.

But today I rejoice in the news that I get to be the mother of yet another precious child. And I pray constantly, earnestly, dearly that I get the pleasure of holding this one in my arms while he or she is still alive. I long for the day that I have a child who can look into my eyes.

Today it's been one hundred days. Oh how we have seen the Lord's goodness.

May 28, 2014

Officially That Crazy Lady

Still telling this fun little story of ours. After months of grief and pain and hurt, it's fun to write a little bit about something so very happy.

March 27, 2014

So I called the doctor's office yesterday. I was pretty sure my lab results wouldn't be in until today, but I figured I'd call just to make sure. No one answered so I left a message for the nurse. It went something like this:
"This is Brittany Hess, you can call me back at ###-###-####. If you have time. I'm not concerned about anything, but I was just wondering if maybe you had my lab results back yet. I mean, I know you probably won't have them until tomorrow, but I just wanted to check. I'm officially that crazy lady. Again this is Brittany Hess, if you can't call me until tomorrow that's okay too."
Really? I actually said 'I'm officially that crazy lady.' I'd been staring at my phone all day. You know, just in case they magically got the results in a day early and they wanted to call me. Well I stared at the phone until the moment that the nurse actually called me back. I was being healthy and doing Zumba and I missed her call... So I called her back. And left another message.
"This is Brittany Hess again, Calling you back. Oh my number is ###-###-####. I'm sorry I missed your call. I really have been staring at the phone all day and of course I missed when you actually called. Sorry I don't mean to call too much. But if you get this I'll be free all day so you can call me back. If you have time. But if you don't you can call me tomorrow. That would be okay... Again this is Brittany Hess. Thanks."
Yep, I actually told her I'd been staring at my phone all day.

Then she called me back. You know just as I was getting close to a school zone, where cell phone use will cost you up to $200 in fines. I'm not sure if that's just when the lights are blinking or not so I play on the safe side. Luckily her conversation was short and I was off the phone before I hit the school zone. She was sweet and told me not to worry about calling, that she would have wanted to know too. She told me they didn't have the results yet, but that they'd have them 'tomorrow morning.' Which is today.

I'm about to go to work and drive through lots of school zones. Maybe she'll call then :)


I walked into one of our schools with my scale and stadiometer in hand. I stepped into one of the classrooms and then my phone rang. I pulled out my phone and it was the doctor's office. Quickly I told the teacher that my doctor was calling and I'd have to step out. Then I quickly ran down the hallway to an empty corner, with my stadiometer, scale, and all.

I tried to answer the phone all nonchalant but really I wanted to scream "What are the results?!?!?" The sweet nurse introduced herself and I will tell you she was being so polite that I thought it must be bad news. And then she said that my hcg had increased, she told me the numbers and she told me it looked great. I had to stop her and confirm, 'so you're saying that we're pregnant and so far everything looks great?' And she said, 'yes, we still think you are about 2 weeks pregnant' which for those of you counting that means 'two weeks since conception which they later say is "4 weeks pregnant."

I know I had the biggest smile on my face. And I couldn't even call Kyle, because I had to do heights and weights. I finished the three classes at the school and once I got to the car I called Kyle. I made sure he was nowhere near anyone while on the phone and I told him. It was strange because I didn't yell and scream, because it's still pretty hard to believe.

May 26, 2014

I Pray Three Things

March 26, 2014

So I'm one of those people that talks about her 'friends' and is totally talking about the people who write the blogs she reads. I'm all 'a friend of mine' ... 'well, someone I know' ... 'okay, so someone who's blog I read' is doing this or that. And today one of those sweet ladies is having a baby. Yes, I just teared up at an instagram picture of a lady I've never met who is currently in labor.

The truth is, whether I know you or not, when I find out you are going into labor, or I hear you're having pregnancy complications, or even if I hear that you're having the most normal healthy pregnancy ever... I pray for you. My heart pleads to the Lord that your baby will be healthy, that you will be safe, that you will never have to walk out of that hospital with empty arms.

I have quite a few friends who are pregnant right now, some of them who have gotten pregnant since Hannah was born. And you know what, I love to hear that you're having a baby (or two!). I love to hear that you're healthy. And even if everyone else is praying that your baby will have your nose or will grow up to be smart, I'm praying desperately for two things.

The first is that your baby will live. Plain and simple. That your baby would live, out in the open air, on this earth, and live until he or she is the ripe old age of 87 at least. I pray that you would live too, that you would live to hold your sweet baby in your arms.

The second is that your baby would know the Lord as his or her Lord and Savior and that someday you would get to know that your child has trusted in the Lord. I pray that your baby would have a great purpose for His kingdom and that the Lord would get all the glory.

But I'll be honest, I do pray a third prayer too. I do pray for you, that if you still experience loss, if you have to spend months and months telling almost total strangers that your little girl didn't make it, I pray that you know the Lord. I pray that you hold fast to his truth and his Word. I pray that he brings you peace in your pain and that you are not tempted to turn from him. I pray that if something so horrible happens that you are able to say 'Thank You' because you have somehow in all the chaos seen the beauty of the Lord more deeply than you have ever imagined. I pray that you sit thinking of your sweet baby weeks and months later and you can thank the Lord for the blessing of being a mother, for the joy of carrying that child, and for the true goodness that you now see in the Lord in any and every circumstance. I pray that you would know that the Lord does not change based on our circumstances, but that he is always good.

So today I'm praying for a lady I've never met. And I pray the most for the first two, but, yes, now, I always do pray the third.

And today I'm ready to start praying for myself, but they tell us to wait just a few more days before they can tell us if there really is a baby in my belly, or if there was an early miscarriage or a rogue hormone that made my test say positive.

Soon though. Maybe somehow magically they'll call today. But let's be honest, one to two days usually doesn't mean zero days...

May 23, 2014

What Does That Mean?

I do believe we left off last time with the screen that said Pregnant.

I think I was stunned. Even after being convinced I was pregnant for weeks I was stunned. Could this really be true? Could we really be so blessed to be so pregnant so soon? Were we sure that the pregnancy test really knew the truth?

So I walked back into the bedroom test in hand, but keeping it pretty concealed. I slipped it under my pillow and slid into bed. I had no idea how I would tell Kyle. Maybe I could plan something. Maybe I could wait. But then I guess I woke him up, because he got up to go to the bathroom. And it was that moment that I realized I'd left the box and instructions all laid out in the bathroom!

So he came back to bed and I snuggled up next to him, and I figured I'd wait for him to ask. And he did. Kyle asked "so did you remember to take the test?" I replied "yep." And he continued "And?" And then I got all excited and said,

"And we're going to have a baby!! ... I think."

I was so excited. He was too. Of course he kissed me, and then we talked about how we could know for sure. Was this test the confirmation we were looking for? Why did we still second guess things? Was it because last time we got this test it didn't promise us a baby in this world? I don't think so. I think we just wanted to make sure somehow that it's not any kind of weird post-pregnancy thing happening.

We're excited. But more so I'd say that we're very ready to be really excited... if that even makes since.

Today we had a busy day. I made a friend take a picture of us at the wedding we attended so we could have a picture of the day we found out that baby number two was on the way. Even if we weren't quite yet convinced.

March 24, 2014

Today I picked up the phone to call my baby doctor. I felt the same way I felt when I was picking up the phone to call a boy in high school to ask him to one of those girl asks the guy dances. Oh I was nervous.

I dialed the number and my good friend picked up. She's the girl that works the front desk at the office and I only really know her from the office. But she was always so friendly and she was so very sweet when I came in the office after we lost Hannah. And she answered and I wanted to make sure it was her because I was so excited to tell her. I said something like 'so I think we're pregnant, I got a positive pregnancy test yesterday...' and she screamed! Then she helped clue in the other girls in the office and they were so excited for us. I reminded her that we weren't sure yet, but that's why I was calling. She asked how we were doing and I told her we are doing very well. And I assured her that even before this news, that we were doing very well.

And I think that for me that's important. My healing after Hannah is not the result of another pregnancy. My hurt will not disappear when I hold another baby in my arms. But as the Lord has given us strength we have begun to heal. The Lord is my stronghold, He will never be shaken. And I think that helps, because even if we aren't in fact pregnant, or even if the very same thing happens again, the Lord is not shaken. My reason for healing is not gone. And somehow I think that's a big thing. My hope is found in nothing less than Jesus Christ, His Righteousness.


We got an appointment made for a few weeks out and then the nurse asked me to come to the office today for blood work. As I was leaving the office I asked what the blood work was for. I hadn't had this test with Hannah, and I was wondering why this was happening now. They said the test was a quantitative hcg test and a progesterone test to help confirm and date my pregnancy. Made sense to me. With all these post-pregnancy hormones there's no telling when we actually got pregnant...

But now I wait. I already even checked the online lab results portion of the patient portal website. No results posted yet. I know they said it would take one to two days, but man I'm antsy...

March 25, 2014

They haven't called yet. I checked the website again. Not that they would post the results before they called me, but I almost want to just call them to check. But I know they are busy and they would call me when they could. And they may not get the results until tomorrow anyway. But maybe I could just call real quick. No. Just wait...
I checked the website one more time just in case.
I just jumped when my phone rang. It was my friend Elizabeth. Poor thing I probably sounded disappointed or distracted when she called. I wanted to yell "I could be pregnant, I'm so excited, but I'm going crazy waiting for them to call!!!" But I didn't. It's just me, Kyle, and the medical people that know right now... well, maybe at least the medical people know...

Please call me, k thanks.

Okay so I just saw a new tab on the online chart. It's called "Chart Access Summary" Yikes! They have a record of how crazy much I've been checking this chart since yesterday! Oh man! I guess now that I know they're tracking me I'll have to stop checking. Oops. Or maybe they'll see that I'm crazy anxious and just call me. Oh, now I got an error about chart access... is it because they think I'm crazy, or is it because they're entering new data ?!?! Okay, it's true. I am crazy...

Maybe I'll just call them and ask if they're going to call me today or tomorrow. That way if they're going to call tomorrow I won't stare at my phone in a trance all day... Okay, I won't call them.

(Less than 5 minutes later).

They're calling!!!!

So the nurse from the baby doctor office calls. She introduces herself and I'm thinking 'yep, I know who you are just cut to the chase.' And she tells me that my blood hcg level is 183 and so I'm clueless. So I was glad it didn't take her too long to say 'which means that you're about 1 week pregnant...

Me: (They're calling!!!!!) Hello, this is Brittany.
Nurse: Hi this is Nurse from Baby Doctor Office. I'm calling with your lab results.
Me: (Yes!! Tell me already!!) Oh okay. Great. (as I spring out of my office so I can actually talk back to her on the phone.)
Nurse: Your blood hcg level was 183.
Me: (What does that mean?!?)
Nurse: ...which means you are about 1 week pregnant.
Me: (What does that mean?)
Nurse: No wait,
Me: (What?!? What are you saying no??)
Nurse: Sorry, that means you are 2 weeks pregnant.
Me: (What does that mean?) Oh okay.
Nurse: And so your progesterone level was 26.
Me: (What does that mean? )
Nurse: ... and we like it to be above 20 so that's good.
Me: Great.
Nurse: So we also want to repeat these tests again tomorrow so we can compare.
Me: (Is there something wrong that you aren't telling me?!?)
Nurse: Is that okay, I can have the form for you pick up and bring to the lab tomorrow if that's okay?
Me: Yes... business talk, business talk... I have one more question. What does it mean to be 'two weeks pregnant?' Like is this two weeks since conception or two weeks 'pregnant' which would mean like 0 weeks since conception since pregnancy is measured from the time of the last period?
Nurse: Oh, two weeks since conception.
Me: Oh okay. Great. I've been wondering. (I'm so glad I asked because I would have googled the heck out of that question had I not asked.)
Me: Thanks.

The odd part is that she didn't say 'congratulations' like the lady did on the phone last year. I'm not sure if they're just being gentle with me because of what happened with Hannah. But I can't help but wonder why this time I'm going in for all these tests and repeat tests when last time they just said 'okay we'll see you at 8 weeks.'

I'll ask them next time I talk to them. Maybe it's because they want to make sure to have the correct date. I hear after stillbirth sometimes they induce early as soon as they think the baby could be ready. Once they know the lungs can breathe. I guess they need to make sure and get the date absolutely correct if they're planning an early delivery.

I want to run to Kyle and yell 'yay!!!' but I'll refrain. I guess I'll have to wait until 5 to tell him in person...

May 21, 2014

It Finally Stopped Blinking and Said

So I think we left off with the negative pregnancy test...

Wednesday March 19, 2014

It's been ten says since that first Sunday. I spent a little too much time today figuring out how many days after we got pregnant with Hannah until my pregnancy test actually showed a positive. By the end of the calculation I figured that taking all signs into account - today would be the day the test would turn positive. Maybe I just tested too early a few days ago. Or maybe my body's just adjusting to life after pregnancy.

I know my heart still is.

Thursday March 20, 2014

I told both Kyle and myself last Sunday that I'd wait until Saturday before taking a second test. It's not that I'm holding onto the fact that we could be pregnant because I can't accept the truth that we may not be. But I actually think it's quite near impossible that we could be pregnant right now. My body though, seems to think otherwise.

Friday March 21, 2014

So I know I said I'd wait until Saturday. But I just couldn't. So this morning I woke up and snuck off the the bathroom and pulled out the second of my three-pack of pregnancy tests. I followed the instructions to the t. Then I stared. I have no idea if there is a second line or not. There's more of a line than there was on Sunday, or maybe I'm seeing things. I have no idea. But it looks a lot like the faint line I saw last year before the next test confirmed pregnancy. But there's a reason someone invented the digital tests... right? What would you think if you saw this result? Try moving your head back and forth...

Kyle laughed when I went in the room and told him of my confusion. He said 'I thought you were waiting until Saturday.' I just replied with 'well I was.'

So today on my way home I saw the Walgreen's in Tyler. It's the same Walgreens I walked into and purchased a pack of digital pregnancy tests almost a year ago. That was the pack that told us Hannah was coming. I passed the store, and then decided that sentimentality got the best of me and I made a U-turn in five o'clock traffic. I went back to the store, to the same cash register and bought the tests. Somehow that made me quite happy.

Sunday March 23, 2014

I didn't take the test on Saturday. It took all my will power. But I told Kyle I'd wait until Sunday. And if we were pregnant that'd give me just a little more of the hormone needed to make the test turn positive on Sunday.

Well today is Sunday.

I woke up this morning at 5:45. I was hungry and I had to pee. Can anyone say pregnancy? I tried to stay in bed a little longer so Kyle and I could rest, but I thought I might wet the bed. So I got up and headed to the bathroom. I tried to be quiet as I pulled my digitial test out of the wrapper. I read the instructions probably three times before I was ready. Man I was nervous.

I took the test and then waited on the little hour glass symbol. The little timer blinked in the screen as I waited. I tried to be all nonchalant and look around the room like I wasn't crazy nervous. But really my eyes were burning a hole through that test. I'm not sure if they can make faster tests, but man those three minutes are a lifetime.

Then it finally stopped blinking and said:


May 19, 2014

Somehow I'm Not Convinced

So remember that time we went to Disney World. You know, and rode all the rides that say 'no expectant mothers,' you know because I didn't think I was an expectant mother...

Well... turns out I was.

I started to get a little nervous, so naturally I started writing.

Tuesday March 11, 2014

We're on quite possibly the biggest vacation we've ever taken. We're right smack dab in the middle of all things Disney and Orlando and magic. And today we decided to take a backpack to Islands of Adventure just in case I needed certain items that us ladies sometimes need at certain times of the month, you know, certain times that for me were supposed to start on Sunday...

Wednesday March 12, 2014

As I was standing in line today at Disney World I saw the little 'No Expectant Mothers' symbol on many of the rides. I'm not an expectant mother, so I'm free to ride. I rode them all. There's really no chance that we are actually pregnant... right?

Thursday March 13, 2014

Today at Epcot we had quite a large buffet meal at the Biergarten restaurant in the World Showcase. I saw some of the cold cut meats and cold sausages and avoided them. You know, because luncheon meats must be steaming hot to be safe for pregnant women. Not like I'm pregnant, but every day that passes I get more curious. It's four days past Sunday.

But then I thought about the last few days. I did not have any alcohol, I do not smoke, I most definitely didn't participate in any illegal drug use, but I did...

 - Eat cold lunch meat on a Jimmy John's sandwich on Tuesday
 - Eat sauerkraut today at the Biergarten
 - Order a medium rare steak on Wednesday
 - Take allergy medicine all last week and even on Sunday
 - Top my salad with a load of blue cheese crumbles on Wednesday
 - Ride plenty of rides marked 'No Expectant Mothers' on, well, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday...

I guess I didn't garden or play in cat litter, so I haven't broken all the rules. But as far as undercooked meats, cold deli meat, unpasteurized cheese, and roller coasters are concerned, I've broken almost all of the pregnant lady rules. But I guess we don't even know yet if I am a 'pregnant lady' ...

Friday March 14, 2014

We were driving for quite a while today on our way home from Florida. Kyle got a Mountain Dew at one of the stops and I refrained from sipping it because of the caffeine. Still thinking in 'what ifs.'

Sunday March 16, 2014

We got out of church today and I couldn't wait any longer. I made a salad at lunch and avoided the tiny cubes of ham on the salad bar...

I need to know. It's been seven days since last Sunday.

So on our way home from the ever-classy Pizza Inn Buffet we stopped at the CVS. I'm sure we could have gone to Walmart, but I couldn't chance running into anyone I knew. I was buying a pregnancy test. Why I felt so much like one of those teenagers in some Lifetime movie, I don't know. As I went to the register I may have flashed my wedding ring quite a bit to show I was married and I made small talk to distract from the item in my hand. They need a shirt that says in bold print "I promise it's okay for me to be buying this right now."

I took my purchase home: a three-pack of the store brand 'early response' tests. I waited the recommended number of hours to pee and I took the test. I stared at the little line forever. Just one line. Not pregnant.

Maybe it's because last time I had a negative test, a few days later I had a positive one... but still somehow I'm not convinced.

May 14, 2014

I Promised You Details

Baby Hess Number Two.

I can't stop smiling.

But I can smile and type at the same time, and I did promise you details.

I've got the beginnings of this wonderful story written down to share soon. You know I cannot stay away from the keyboard so easily when I feel like I have so much to say. It's been killing me that I couldn't share our news sooner. I've been writing about the joy of this new wonderful baby, but also the realities of pregnancy after losing your firstborn.

But today, for those of you with a certain kind of questions, I did want to ease your worries.

1. We are excited to be pregnant. We really are. This is not a bad thing, it's not bad timing. It's very, very good. It's a wonderful thing. It's perfect timing.

2. The doctor said it's okay. There was no known cause for Hannah's death other than an umbilical cord accident. There was nothing we could have done to prevent it, nothing we could have done to cause it. The doctor said that my body still works well, and she cleared us to go on to have many more kiddos. She told us to wait a few months and we did actually. We waited until March and turns out we got pregnant real fast. (We know that's not the case for many, so we count ourselves truly blessed.)

3. There's not really any increased risk that we'll have another still birth. Because of the way everything happened, it was truly 'accidental' and not related to any other health conditions. That doesn't mean we're guaranteed a healthy baby, not at all, but the doctor says there's no reason to worry.

4. Either way, pregnancy will be a bit different. Even finding out we were pregnant was different. The doctor had multiple tests done to make sure we had a healthy pregnancy way before we got the 'yay you're pregnant' memo. We've been told we'll have more monitoring this pregnancy, but it all depends how things are going.

5. Just because the doctor says not to worry, doesn't mean we don't. Right now I really am footloose and fancy free. But when we talk about 'the pregnancy' it's harder to say 'the baby' and 'once the baby is born...' just because we know that a pregnancy doesn't always mean you get to hold your living baby in your arms. I'm sure once we close in on 38 or 39 weeks (if we are so blessed) that I will get quite nervous. But we're already praying for that time.

6. We are still celebrating. One of the things I loved most about our pregnancy with Hannah was that we didn't wait until she was born to love her, to talk to her, to tickle her, to tell everyone all about her. We love that our friends and family threw showers in her honor because those ended up being the few parties she'd ever have. I want to celebrate our new little guy (or girl) all along the way too. I know that many people handle pregnancy after loss with great care in keeping the pregnancy a secret for a long time. I know some people need that. For us we need the opposite. We need you to know. We need you to celebrate with us. For us it would be harder to go through any other loss without our friends and family, because you all were such a support to us with Hannah.

7. We are not forgetting Hannah. We would not be able to even if we tried. We were at a wonderful place in our grief when we found out about the new baby, and I am very glad. I don't feel guilty for loving another child 'so soon' because I think we had gotten to a place of acceptance in our grieving. I also know that many may feel healing only 'because of' a new baby', and for us that wasn't the case entirely. Our healing was from the Lord. Even if we lose this new baby, we would be heartbroken but not lost because we still hold fast to our Lord. He is never failing.

8. A new baby does help some though. Part of the pain from losing Hannah is missing her specifically and mourning the loss of her. But some of the pain was not getting to be parents, not having children of our own to raise. So yes, the idea that we're getting a second chance to be parents is wonderful.

9. We pray we get to keep this baby alive, but we know that the Lord has not promised us that. We don't somehow 'deserve' to have a baby because we lost Hannah. Our God is good, baby or not. Even if the very same thing happens all over again, the Lord is still sovereign and still good.

10. We're out of our minds excited and I want to share every detail with you all! And if you know me at all, you know I will. We are up here in Colorado now, so I'll try to keep the blog as updated as I can. But yes, I have lots to tell.

The Lord has promised good to me,
His Word my hope endures,
He will my shield and portion be,
As long as life endure.

Even if his good looks very differently than ours, our God is very Good.

May 11, 2014

the Hesses are Blessed

Today we celebrate Mother's Day and here at the Hess House we are truly blessed.

We are blessed by a God who loves us, who gave his Son for us, who gives us hope in desperation, joy through suffering, and love like we could never imagine.

Today it brings us an incredible joy to announce that we celebrate Mother's Day in a new way. I get a chance to be a mother again. The Hesses are expecting Baby Hess Number Two.

We have no guarantees, but we pray daily for a baby who lives. But surely we pray for another baby that offers the Lord as much glory as our sweet Hannah.

So the news is out: The Hesses are Expecting and today, Mother's Day it is truly a blessing.

Details to come.

May 9, 2014

I am Praying for the Mothers

I want to write a word to the mothers today.

Mothers, there really are all kinds.

There are grandmothers who have become like mothers once again, fathers who have too often been both father and mother, and then the mothers who have been both mother and father.

There are the courageous women who push through the pain of bringing a child into the world only to then be strong enough to put that baby up for adoption. There are the mothers who fill out all the adoption paperwork, the miles and miles of it, who are praying that that very same baby will soon be called their own.

There are the mothers who have healthy children who delight in the little smiles that fill their houses, but still need more patience than they'll ever have, who dream about the sleep that they once had, and remember the lives they gave up to raise their children. There are the mommas with sick children who pray every day that the Lord would heal their sweet babies and give them life, and there are the mommas with well babies who pray every day for their child's life in Christ.

There are the moms who have broken hearts because although the world does not call them 'mother' they are trying so very hard to become mothers. They have all the love to give but no one yet to give it to. There are the women who long for husbands so that they can become mothers, and the women who have the husbands and the pills and the shots and all the best doctors, but still no babies.

And then there are the mothers I hold so dear to my heart. There are the mothers who cannot hold their babies today. They are the mothers who will not be getting little handmade cards because letters from heaven just don't quite make it on time for Mother's Day. These are the mothers who have been so very blessed to know how much their hearts can love a child so quickly, but also how much their hearts can long for that same sweet face every moment of every day.

There are mothers who live in a very scary world. They long to be mothers again but getting back on the horse means opportunity to feel the deepest of pains all over again. Then there are mothers who have decided to get back on the horse and who are trying their best, but having no luck at all. These mothers want so badly to be a mother to a baby that lives.

There are mothers who are so blessed to be pregnant again after loss. They know the sweet blessing of a baby inside, but they know all too well how much it could hurt to lose this one too. There are days that they smile and celebrate and rejoice and there are days that they are scared to death to love again, scared of what the others say is a small chance but what they know is in fact a reality.

So I pray today for all the mothers - through times of wanting, through moments of the unexpected, through weeks of pregnancy whether blessing or pain, through endless calls and home studies and paperwork, through hours of labor, through months of sleepless nights and selfless love that puts any romance novel to shame, for the years and decades of praying for that little baby that you long for, that you miss dearly, that won't give you a moment's rest, that grew up and away all too soon and took a part of your heart with them.

Today I pray that you will know the sovereignty of the Lord. I pray that you would know He hold the whole world in His hands. I pray that you would praise Him for the joys of motherhood and that you would draw near to Him in the sufferings that come too.

I pray that as the Lord has given you this great Mother's heart to love - that you would see His great love for us, His heartache when He longs for us, His love without regard, His desire for our best even when it sometimes means we don't get exactly what we want, exactly when we want it, His love that loves us enough to see us through pain and suffering and the promise of eternal glory. Oh this great, great love.

So for all of you out there, mothers of all kinds, today, on this very special weekend, I am praying for the mothers.

May 7, 2014

We made it.

We made it!

After the fifteen hour drive, we made it to Colorado! Right now we're working on getting settled in while working hard to get camp ready for staff in less than two weeks. I'm working on ordering activity gear and making cabin cleaning schedules and figuring out what we need for First Aid training. It's gonna be a busy summer...

But when I say, 'we made it,' I think too of a different idea. The idea that Kyle and I looked at each other many times last December and said 'we're gonna make it.' And here we are. It's almost five months later and the Lord has proven faithful.

I went on a walk just the other morning here in the beautiful San Juan mountains. I grabbed my ipod and prayed and I sang as I looked to the beautiful skies of Colorado. And all the songs were true. My heart still bears much pain at times, but in that moment all I could do was sit and look at the Lord's creation and thank Him for who He is. I thanked him for Hannah. I thanked him for the joy she brought us, but I also reminded him that I miss her. I thanked him for the pain, and the healing, and the way he so majestically draws us near to him in times of suffering. He is just so very good.

So here we are right in the middle of the San Juan Mountains, and here we are making it.

So as I work in this tiny office and I look out the window, I remember that we've come so very far. I remember that God is so very good, his love so very beautiful. And for that I am truly grateful.
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