The Shattering

I am not sure I understood the gravity of what it meant to be married and to become one with another person for the rest of my life when I was twenty three years old. Scratch that. I definitely didn’t. Nor did I know the sacrifice it would require of me to build our family.  I look back now at pictures of myself just six years ago and I hardly recognize that girl. She looks carefree, somehow. She did not know the sting of death and loss, she was unfamiliar with the struggle of relationship and sacrifice. There is a kind of brokenness she did not yet know of– although she knew of the world’s brokenness deeply. But this kind of “broken” is altogether different. It is a brokenness I am not sure that I need healing from. In fact it is not truly brokenness at all, but a kind of strength that comes in the humility of saying I am weak and in need of Jesus every single day. No, it is not the kind of brokenness where I am fighting for my life, although it feels that way at times. It is an acceptance of my frailty and utter powerlessness without Jesus. It is an inescapable weight of circumstance. I find that my desperate need only deepens as my life goes on. As I become more self-aware and aware of the state of the world, I am desperate. Desperate for a solution. Desperate for Him.
Desperate in an altruistic sense, and desperate in a very personal way.

If a glass vase were to fall, it would surely break into pieces. It would be shattered.
It can never be the way that it was before. You could take every shard and somehow fuse them back together again, and yet it would forever be weak.
Frail. Prone to break again and again.

Sometimes the trials of life seem to break us. But in Jesus, we are not broken. We are not shattered beyond repair. No, we are resilient. When we can embrace our grief, our disappointment, and even harder our hope- and bring the pieces to His feet, he can take our brokenness and turn it into beauty. Something stronger than the shattering. He is able to transform us beyond the hurt and pain into a vessel of honor. Where we are no longer weak and frail and prone to break, but strong in Him.

I have days where I feel broken. I feel all the ups and downs of loss and grief (and all the postpartum hormones are not helping.)  And yet, in my heart and my spirit I feel stronger than I was before. There is a great sense of power in refusing to own the shame that so prevalently has tried to mark my identity. There is a freedom in knowing that I am willing to endure suffering and yet I will not be defined by it. I am not what has happened to me, but I am His. And I trust Jesus despite my disappointments in life. I trust that He is good, and that life without regret is worth living.

I heard a prophet say this once and it has stayed with me all these years.
He whispered with tears flowing down his cheeks,


“You don’t get stronger, you get weaker

And the weaker you get, the more you cry

And the more you cry

the more the anointing flows out.

 -Roger Fields

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Pregnant with Faith + She was Beautiful

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Early on in this pregnancy I had a dream.
I didn’t want to have a dream, to be quite honest.

I wanted this to be my son, Benjamin, whom I dreamed of seventeen months ago. I wanted to keep this baby, and I definitely wanted this to be my last pregnancy! I did not want to entertain the idea of loss again. In fact, I was sure that this dream was a metaphor- or so I wanted it to be.

In the dream I was with a group of women
and I began to prophesy as I spoke to them. I said,

“I am pregnant with Faith.”
[before Isaac] “I had faith, but Isaac gave my faith a voice.”

Pregnant with faith. What did that mean? Surely it is a metaphor, I thought. I am full of faith that is growing up within me, waiting for it’s time to manifest. Okay, I get that. I must admit now that It felt like a double meaning, and that I knew in my spirit that the baby I was carrying was in fact a girl- another daughter. And her name was Faith.

But my mind insisted that I not entertain the idea of loss, and so I went on with life determined not to interpret the dream until I had to.

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At eight weeks pregnant we had our first ultrasound- And they missed it. They missed the hematoma that was beginning to form, even though looking back at the picture it was clearly visible to the untrained eye. At eleven and a half weeks, the bleeding started. The ultrasound showed the baby moving with a great heartbeat, measuring right on schedule. They found the pocket of blood between the sac and the uterine lining- essentially a blood clot outside of where the baby was- and they told me it should resolve on it’s own. I did not even see the doctor that day, I was sent home and told to go on with activity as normal. I knew better than that, and my gut was telling me that I needed to be on bed rest until it resolved. But how could I justify that without a doctor’s recommendation? I rested for two days. The bleeding had stopped and so I continued taking care of my girls as normal while James went back to work. The weekend went by and come Tuesday morning, I decided to listen with my own hand held doppler for the heartbeat. I searched. I searched and heard nothing but my own heartbeat; and I knew. I called James to come home, and we immediately started to believe for a miracle.

When Isaac died in my womb at 20 weeks, I always wondered “What if?”
What if we had the faith to believe for him to be raised from the dead for more than those initial five minutes after we found out he had died? What if I had not been induced right away? I will never know the answer to that question and I have a beautiful daughter who has given me the most beautiful redemption in it all.
But still, I have wondered.

This time was completely different in every way. I had no acceptance left in me. I had no other option than to believe Jesus for a miracle. I refused to accept death any more. I refused to accept loss any more. I refused it, because I was and am convinced that God’s will for me is abundant life and restoration. I did not need to frantically search my bible for an answer or run to some prophet for a prophetic word telling me what God’s will was. I know his word. I know that Jesus gave the final word on the cross. I know he defeated death for me and for that precious baby. I know that His will is healing and wholeness and resurrection. I have never been more resolute in my life.

Maybe you are a doctor. Maybe you are involved with the medical field. (And if you are, I am thankful for you.) Maybe you have never heard of such a thing.  And maybe you don’t even believe what I am writing and you don’t even believe God still moves supernaturally at all. And if so, this may be too much for you and that is okay. But this is my journey- This is my life and my experience so this is what I am sharing- And It is what I will go to the grave proclaiming: Jesus is alive and he wants to make the wrong things right. He wants to manifest His love and his power so that we might know that he is the God who not only forgives our sin, but commands us to pick up our mat and walk.

We had our follow up ultrasound four days later. We already knew what they would see. I went into the ultrasound room and I told our technician, “I just want you to know that we have not found the heartbeat for a few days. And that no matter what comes up on that screen Jesus is going to do a miracle for us.” I said it, because I believed it. We saw our beautiful baby, measuring at 12 weeks with no heartbeat. The hematoma had doubled in size. We did not even wait to see the doctor. I did not want a d&c regardless- I wanted a miracle. So we left.

We prayed for ten days for our precious baby to be raised from the dead in my womb. Those days were not easy by any means, but I encountered God there. I laid in bed and prayed in tongues for hours. I played worship music and scripture over my womb. We listened to testimonies of the dead being raised. (here’s a good one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EHwyqifxs34&t=458s) We commanded in the authority of Jesus. We declared. We spoke and prayed and cried and laughed and rested and received. I encountered his goodness. The presence of Jesus was so tender to me. We had friends pray with and for us. On the eighth or ninth day, I had no more words left. I could only lay myself at his feet and say, “I know who you are. You are the Living One who was dead and is now alive, and you hold the keys of death and the grave. You are the God of miracles. You are the God who gives life to dead and calls those things that are not as though they are. You are The Resurrection and The Life. And it is illegal for this baby to stay dead in my womb because of what you have done on the cross.” For ten days we prayed. My body began to cramp, but we still prayed. I was still bleeding, but we still prayed. We listened and searched for a heartbeat. We still prayed. How could we not believe until the end?

And then the end came.

And She was beautiful.

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I struggle to find words to convey the emotion that I felt.
In that moment, I had no regrets-

There she was.

She was breathtakingly beautiful.
She fit just in the palm of my hand.

I couldn’t be more thankful than for those fifteen minutes with her.
Some would say that her life was not a life at all. That she was simply a ‘group of cells.’
That she had no right within herself to live. But they did not hold her in their hands.
They did not see her precious, perfect, tiny fingers and toes. Her featured face and sweet mouth. She was incredible. I was in awe of her and of the privilege of creating her and of being a mother.

I stayed there in the shower until James rushed home fifteen minutes later. I had a home birth with Deborah- and I knew that I was losing way too much blood because of the internal bleeding that had already been taking place. About the time I told him he needed to call an ambulance I started to black out. I came back after a few seconds and my husband kindly put a shirt on me and a towel around my waist minutes before the EMT arrived and carried me in their fancy gurney-chair-thing into the freezing cold rain. I will spare you the ER visit, but let’s just say it ended with me being discharged and coming back thirty minutes later. I ended up staying overnight at the hospital and had two blood transfusions.


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We decided on a cremation for our babe. It felt right to honor her life. It felt like closure. And I am so incredibly thankful that it was completely paid for.
They gave us back the tiniest pink urn.

 

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It’s a surreal feeling holding the ashes of your child in your hand. I had to remind myself that it was really and truly only dust and that she was not there at all, but experiencing life far greater than I can imagine now. We spread her ashes over the surface of a lake on family land. It was peaceful, still and calm.

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And now we go on. We live our life with purpose and with intentionality. We do not drift through life passively, but we fight for hope. We choose to believe when our eyes do not yet see that for which we hope for. And I remain pregnant with faith; It just looks different now.

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“Because of you, my girl,
I believe in miracles all the more.
I will fight for you, and to show the world the One who holds you and the One who heals you. What a gift you were and always will be.
Thank you for the privilege of carrying you – I cherish you.

I’ll always be your mama, and you’ll always be my girl.

Love, Mama.

Part II: Why It Matters


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The devil made the mistake of making it personal to me.

Not one time, but four times. He made the mistake of making the reputation of Jesus and the manifestation of His name personal for me. I have to see Jesus manifest his name. It is not an option for me. I have to see His nature made manifest- not just for my own vindication, but for his name sake; for people. To reveal the Father to a hurting world searching for answers. It is no longer about my pain- It is about his name.

Who is Jesus Christ?– Nothing demonstrates the answer to that question faster or more effectively than an encounter with the Holy Spirit and His power. To know by experience- not by doctrine or theology- not head knowledge, but heart experience- His presence. That he is alive, walking, working, caring, involved and present. He is knee-deep in humanity’s pain and he is intentionally immersed in our confusion and hurt and darkness. The light of the world- still shining. Still moving. Still healing and drawing every heart.

This is why it matters.

In comparison, that I had to endure the loss of another child is not what causes me grief. What matters most to me is proving to the world that He is who he says he is. It is the vindication of His Name that matters to me the most. He is not uncaring, unfeeling, unmoved. He is not a God who desires hardship for his children. He is not a God who sends calamities and tragedies and then demands worship. Far from it– He is the Savior of the entire world. He is the One who came and while we were his enemies rescued us from our own selves. Delivered us from death and invited us into an eternal existence where there is no more pain. He is the one who was crushed voluntarily for our sickness and sorrow to give us abundant life here and now. It matters what we think of Him. It matters because how can we be intimate with a God we are secretly afraid of?

There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.” 1 John 4:18

He is not a Father who is punishing us for our weakness. He is a Father who gave everything that he had to make sure that we knew our true identity was found in Him and His love- not our weakness. He is a God who gave his own flesh to redeem us from our darkness and bring us into relationship with him. It matters what we think of Him.
What we think of Him says a whole lot about what we think about ourselves and what we think we deserve. How we perceive God is so important for our own lives- And also how we will represent Him to our world. Do we perceive him as distant, disengaged, punishing? Who would want a God like that?
We have to be willing to be a solution to the world’s pain rather than trying to find purpose in it when in fact the only intent of hell was to destroy the reputation of Jesus. If we can put on display his true nature, his character, his intent, his will, his heart–
The world will run to Him.

Because He is beautiful.

Faith + Part One: God Is Not The Source of Your Pain

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“Every good and perfect gift
comes down from the Father of Lights
in whom there is no shadow of turning at all.”
James 1:17

I saw one like a son of man, clothed in a robe reaching to the feet, and girded across His chest with a golden sash. His head and His hair were white like white wool, like snow; and His eyes were like a flame of fire. His feet were like burnished bronze, when it has been made to glow in a furnace, and His voice was like the sound of many waters. In His right hand He held seven stars, and out of His mouth came a sharp two-edged sword; and His face was like the sun shining in its strength. When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man. And He placed His right hand on me, saying, “Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last. I am The Living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forever and ever, and I have the keys of death and of Hades.
[Revelation 1:10-18]

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My womb is empty

And yet my heart is full of faith.

It is also full of grief.

This one thing I know is sure, and I will cry it with every fiber of my being:

God is not the source of your pain.
And he is not the source of mine.

That can only mean that he is in fact Healer, Deliverer, Savior.

He is The Living One; the one who was dead and is now alive forever.
He is Faithful and True; He is The Resurrection and the Life.

Either we believe that is true, or we should just go ahead and burn our bibles and quit pretending we believe them.

It doesn’t take faith to say that it is “God’s will” when loss or sickness or difficulty comes.
It does takes faith to say that Jesus is a healer and a God of miracles. It does take faith to push back when life weighs down heavy and all of hell is raging against you.
It does take faith to stand in the midst of pain and disappointment and say “I know who you are, Jesus.”

And yet, sometimes when you pray for a miracle, you don’t get it.
So what then do we do?

Do we keep on hoping in spite of unanswered prayers?
Do we keep on believing when all of hell is raging against us?
Do we keep our hearts open and reaching for the light-
choosing to stand resolute -until- that which we have hoped for is manifest?

For me there is only one answer.

Loss does not change who God is.
It cannot change who I am.

What I have lost has already been found and rescued into an eternity of life and love. And yet it is a loss; a great loss. A beautiful daughter and a life with immeasurable value and purpose. So I stand in awe of a Savior who saves and does not change. I stand in awe of the one who was dead and is now alive. The one who holds the seven stars and stands like a roaring lion at the battle gate, fighting for me.

He is Healer. He is Deliverer. He is The Resurrection and The Life.

I am no victim. John 10 is clear that Jesus came to give us life, and that the enemy of our souls comes to steal, kill, and destroy. That means he is a thief, and murderer, and a destroyer. So why then, do we so often blame God for our pain?
Even a child can tell you that God is good, and that tragedy is not from God.
It is a simple thing.

There is no need to wonder even for a second the source of my pain.
And I will say it one more time:

God is not the source of your pain.

So why then did we not see our miracle?
I can’t say that I know the answer. But this one thing I do know:

I absolutely cannot look at Jesus willfully bleeding, crushed on the cross for my sickness, pain, sorrow, sin, and death and accuse him of robbing me. He already gave the final word. He already judged death powerless. He already healed and made whole all that was broken. He commands us to heal the sick, cast out demons and raise the dead back to life. Why would he command us to do it if it wasn’t his will? We know very well as a culture that Jesus commands us to love one another- and yet in the same breath he commands us to lay hands on the sick and heal them. So why then do we so readily accept sickness? Why then do we so readily accept death and difficulty? I have seen the sick healed. I have cast out demons. I have prayed for the dead to be raised- twice for my own children. His will is clear and I will not waver from it. He is the “expressed image of the Father, the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being.”[Hebrews 1:3] Jesus is more beautiful than any miracle I could ever see- And yet I do not have to choose between wanting Jesus and desiring a miracle- they are one in the same.  Miracles are an expression of his beautiful heart.

“The Son of God appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.”
[1 John 3:8]

“God anointed Jesus of Nazareth with the Holy Spirit and with power. He went about doing good and healing all who were oppressed by the devil, for God was with him.” [Acts 10:38]

I do not “earn” my children through my performance or obedience or lack-thereof. I do not “lose” them through my mistakes and failures. What kind of God would that be? And yet I hear it. Better yet if you go that route- How evil am I to deserve four miscarriages- three late losses at that- while others never see loss. How ridiculous does that sound? How much shame does that resign to me? And yet that is what is implied if we agree that these losses are somehow God’s will for me. The cross of Jesus and the blood of Jesus are my only claim to righteousness and goodness. And they are enough. He says I am good.

I am righteous because he made me righteous.
Therefore it is illegal for the devil to steal from me and my family.
Everything that he does is illegal- remember, he is the thief.
It isn’t stealing if it is legal.

Jesus said these signs will follow those who believe.
So do I believe? Yes. And so these signs must follow me.
I will not accept anything less.

Hell will tremble because of me.

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Dear Deborah: On The Day You Were Born

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 Zion was barely in labor when she had her babies!
Do I open the womb and not deliver the baby?
Do I, the One who delivers babies, shut the womb?
Isaiah 66

   “This one was born there,” they say.
And of Zion it shall be said,
 “This one and that one were born in her”;
for the Most High himself will establish her.
The Lord records as he registers the peoples,
“This one was born there.”
Psalm 87:4-6

“ The thief comes only to steal, kill, and destroy. I have come so they may have life, and life abundantly.”
John 10:10

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It has been eleven days since you came into this world in the dim light of our bedroom, in the early hours of the morning; your daddy’s hands the first to touch and hold you. You gave your first cry, and he placed your warm body into my waiting arms.
This is the beginning of your story; full of miracles.

July second, two thousand and sixteen. You were born some time between 5:50 and 5:59am. We’ll never know the exact time, because we were not looking at the clock.
We were looking at you.

So much of your story is intertwined with mine. You are a part of me that could never be separated even by time or by distance. I heard your name in a dream, and my darling girl you became that dream. Your life is a fulfillment of the goodness of God, the faithfulness and follow-through of a good Father, a miracle-working Savior. A God who speaks and who creates existence. A God who redeems our days. Who in place of trauma, grief, pain and death, gives a new experience.

Babies are born everyday, and to some it may be just another regular occurrence. But to me, your day was a day that changed me. This is not only your story, but ours. A day of redemption.

After so many months of hurt, I can finally feel again. After so many years of silence, I feel worship flowing out of my heart, apprehending me. After so many days clinging to truth when I felt nothing, I can feel the love of Jesus rushing over me. After wondering If I would ever have the ability to see my future with hope and life and promise- I feel freedom.  I see His power. I see His life. I see him choosing me, again and again. When I may feel so small and powerless, I hear him saying, “Daughter, I chose you, you didn’t choose me.”
And to my broken heart, “I believe in you.”

I feel hope. Hope with a momentum that can’t be stopped; a confidence that can’t be cut down or drowned out with uncertainty. A faith that comes from knowing He never gives up or forsakes me. When Isaac died, a part of me was buried with him.  I buried all self-confidence, all self-belief. My insecurities were louder than they had ever been.  I could believe in the character God. I could still believe in his ability to do miracles- But believe in myself? Believe in my body that had so seemingly failed me and left me devastated? I could not. Believe in my own hands to perform those miracles when my own son was not raised from the dead? I was unable. I was disillusioned. And with each miscarriage that only increased.

The day you were born, sweet girl, i found a strength inside. A fire inside that so undeniably burned into me a knowing- instilling in me a confidence that I CAN.  The ability to trust him with the one thing i felt i could not-  The life inside of me. Your life. I trusted him to bring you into this world; to give you your first breath as the Author of Life, The Finisher of my faith. I overcame that fear that had so crippled me, that anxiety and powerlessness that had consumed me for so long. There were no doctors, there was no midwife. There was only Jesus. Yes, we did it. He and I. A sacred and holy partnership of trust that brought you into the world. And maybe that sounds crazy to some. Of course it does. But we are not to live like the world, constantly wondering and worrying about the “What ifs” of life.
“What if I bleed out? What if she doesn’t turn, what if…?”
“–but what if it’s amazing- What if it’s incredible? What if it is the best day of my life?”

These were the thoughts that drove me.

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I woke up at 2:00am. Contractions. Not too painful, not too intense. I was not impressed with them as I had been having them for 7 long weeks. I went back to sleep. 4:00am. Those are more painful than usual, I thought. I found myself having to breathe through them, and I woke up your daddy. He wasn’t very responsive and I was sure that I was probably getting my hopes up, so I tried once again to sleep. I soon realized that wasn’t going to happen and that I needed to get out of bed and wait them out. Was this real labor, finally? So many times I thought you were coming and they would stop. But this time, they kept coming. Still, I was in total denial that this was in fact labor. They were inconsistent, but wow did they start to intensify!
Your daddy finally got the message when I squeezed his hand so tightly that it hurt.

We waited to see what would happen; it was about 5:00am and Grace was fast asleep in her bed. About that time I started to shake uncontrollably and I knew suddenly- not only was this in fact real labor, but I was in transition. I knelt down on my knees next to the foot of the bed and rode the contractions like a wave, unable to move from that place.. Thoughts were racing through my mind: “This really hurts! This isn’t pain free at all! I was believing for pain free! I want to get in the bathtub! I want to brush my hair!” But I couldn’t move. I was pinned on my knees as the contractions became more and more intense and on top of one another, hardly giving me a break to breathe. I gripped the sheets (thank God or your daddy’s hands may have been broken) and with one big contraction I felt you come down. When I saw blood I knew this was really ‘it’, and  my water broke just minutes later. It was probably around 5:30am. We frantically text our friends to come and get Grace as was the plan, but we knew at this point it may be too late. Now I was really starting to make some noise! It was all I could do to keep my sanity- I was sure I was going to wake our neighbors. With Grace’s birth I had been so quiet, unable to express myself in that hospital room. But here I was to my surprise roaring like a gorilla at the top of my lungs with no inhibitions. I honestly hadn’t expected that I would be so vocal and loud. It was as If I had found my voice for the first time all over again after having been told to be silent and sit down and don’t have an opinion and don’t think for yourself or be so strong-willed and passionate. But there I was.

And It was so surprising what I heard the Holy Spirit say.

I had prayed and believed for a pain free experience and this was far from it.
(And it was surprising, since Grace’s birth had been mostly pain free.)
It was intensely painful and quick and out of my control.
I felt as If I simply surrendered my body to the process
as you came down farther and made your way into position.

In the thick of the contractions, I felt him say that I needed to experience this pain. (don’t go making that a theology and I won’t either.) I needed to experience this brief, quick, intense pain. Just as I had experienced so much pain over the last four years, I needed to feel. Rather than be numb, I needed to feel. I needed to let it go and release the depths of pain and heartache and disappointment and bitterness and trauma. And I felt a release as I roared through every contraction, eager to see your face. I whispered under my breath to your daddy in-between the waves,

“This is hard, but I can do this.”

I believed Jesus for a supernatural birth, and he gave me just that. An experience with Him. So much more than labor and a delivery. So much more than a dream of home birth fulfilled. I was not afraid. There was no ounce of fear left in me. I had already buried a child and lost two more in this same bedroom. I had no more hesitations. I knew you were going to thrive. I knew what I had heard straight from Jesus himself. I had no time to process or even to think, I was only in “that place” with Him as I labored and as I surrendered.

Grace had woken up by this point at my roaring and was, to my absolute joy and amazement, watching everything now. She woke up just in time to see you be born, Deborah girl. She was propped up against our dresser with a bag of pretzel sticks just like she was watching a movie. She did so great and I was so proud of her.

I remember hearing her little voice in-between contractions, “I got some snacks, mommy!”

You came down into position and I knew it would be soon. I got on my hands and knees and a tangible peace filled the room. For the first time the contractions stopped for a little while and I could take a breath. There was a sacred quiet as I waited for the next wave. I really was not pushing at all, my body had taken over and was doing what it was made to do. If anything, I was aware of the thick presence of the Holy Spirit as he hovered over me, filling our bedroom. It really was as if time stopped, just for that moment. The next contraction came, and you started to crown. Clearly I heard the Holy Spirit say, “Don’t push yet.”

So we waited until the next contraction. You crowned again, this time your daddy saw your eyebrows. During the next contraction, I heard Jesus again so crystal clear:
“You can push now.”
And I whispered, “Catch her, daddy.”

Then your head was born; suspended between two worlds. Your eyes opened up and you saw for the first time your daddy and your sister, watching in amazement and total awe of you.
I will never forget Grace’s little voice, full of excitement saying, “She’s coming out!”

With the fourth and final contraction you came. Your sweet daddy caught you and somehow handed you to me, your umbilical cord still attached. I am pretty sure my first words were, “Oh my God, she’s so slippery! Get a towel!”

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This picture is pretty blurry,
but you can definitely see that my smile is radiating!

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I was honestly in total shock. I was in an other-worldly state as a rush of hormones flooded over me. I just held you in my arms and stared at your perfection. You were beautiful in every way and there will never be words to describe those first moments. I couldn’t believe I did it. It could not have gone better. There were no complications, no tearing. The placenta delivered itself in less than 10 minutes. I felt like I had just conquered the world. Well, I had in a way. I felt a sense of pride and accomplishment and amazement at myself. I was not in fact incapable. Not incompetent. Not silent or small or powerless. No, I brought you into this world roaring on my hands and knees, full of raw power and trust in a God who sees me. And no one can ever take that away from me.

And just as a final gift, our sweet friends pulled up in the driveway just minutes after the birth. Like a sweet mama she helped me get off the floor (literally) and covered up in bed with my sweet babe. Then they took Grace (dressed in just a T-shirt and undies I might add!) and kept her for the better part of the day, taking her to the zoo and splash park! I am forever grateful!

A few hours later, we called the midwife and OB I had been seeing, and they told us to our complete elation that I didn’t need to come in if everyone was doing well. We took our first bath together and climbed back into bed to nurse. Your daddy and I were in heaven as we sat in the comfort and privacy of our own home, uninterrupted, just soaking you in. Also, we took plenty of pictures and ate donuts of course.

At the end of the day, we sang you happy birthday and marveled at the goodness of God to us. I remember as we all snuggled up in bed together saying that I didn’t want to go to sleep, because then the best day of my life would be over. It was honestly the best day of my life thus far. It felt like Christmas at the end of the day when you want to celebrate just a little longer.

My heart has never been so full.
You were worth every ounce of waiting,
you were my reason to never give up..
Forever my freedom girl.

 

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nursery pictures + updates

I have been seriously nesting this pregnancy and enjoying making our den into a third bedroom for our girl. It is officially a third bedroom now that we have sealed the door- and you could never have known that it was there! It turned out great and I’m so thankful for a sweet Dad who can come and throw up a wall in a day. I just wanted to share some pictures of her space for inspiration and just for my records. Enjoy!

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I wanted the room to be peaceful and bright, not your typical all pink girl room. In the house we were living in when Grace was born, I painted her nursery a beautiful mint color. I still miss those walls! I should bring them back one day for her. anyway…. I just was avoiding pink like the plague this time, and very into neutrals and all things multi-colored and bright. This rug just screams Happy!

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My little tiger helper.. This organizer/changing table was my first diy project for this space. I found it at a salvage thrift store for 50$ – I think It was originally a vhs case from..the 80s? Really its hard to know. But it had a beautiful wood finish and it was “mid-century” so It had way too much potential to pass up. I took off the strange glass sliding doors from the front and painted the outer case pure white. Voila! two-toned changing table magic. I love the way it turned out!

 

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This chair was a world market clearance find! It doesn’t rock of course, but we plan on eventually buying our own rocking chair runners and making it into a rocker. Theres’ a pretty awesome Pinterest post for that! > https://www.pinterest.com/pin/255579347578092634/

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and I got these sweet tiny gold dot sheets off of Etsy.com. Super simple but adds some pattern and texture to the room.

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This dresser was my second “trash-to-treasure” project. It was that..how do I describe it? “Strangely finished 80’s looking office faux wood” look. Not cute. But it had a great structure, plenty of space, and it was “mid-century!” I used white chalk paint (no sanding for this mama) all over and then for the legs, well, I cheated. I could have chemically stripped the wooden legs, then sanded them and then refinished them a darker wood tone. BUT instead, I just mixed up a beautiful dark cherry brown acrylic paint and painted right on top of the wood. You’d never even be able to tell it looks so smooth! So much time and energy saved!

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I wanted to paint a little something personal for Deborah’s room, since I had done so for Grace. And because sometimes I just need an excuse to bust out my paints every now and then!!! Just a simple bee for my little honey bee. (Deborah means “honey bee” if you didn’t know!)

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“Bee Happy”

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And I am loving these little IKEA book shelves that I have been seeing everywhere. They are SO cheap. I think they were 9$ each.. perfect for space-saving in a small room. The art on the top shelf was painted by Grace. I wanted to incorporate her somehow in the room and I love saving her little paintings. This one is a favorite!

Cant wait for my sweet girl to make her debut. She probably wont even be in this room for the first few months of her life, but I will make the most of the snuggles in our room until then!

We are all….Contractions, contractions and more contractions over here. She is keeping us all guessing on when she will come. Already showing her colorful personality 🙂

Hope you enjoyed!