Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Unexpected Changes

Yesterday I shared about all the fun happenings from the last 10 months while I was absent from this blog. {You can see it here.}

And as I mentioned at the end of that post, today I will share about the last two  months. Fair warning before you read on: the last two months were hard. There were unexpected events that rocked our world and tested our faith.

So before I jump into this I just want to mention a couple things:

~ I am sharing this and future posts on the subject to encourage others that are going through a similar situation {or any situation that is weighing heavy on your heart.} It was key for us these last two months to have people that surrounded us in prayer, encouraged us and reminded us that joy comes in the morning.

They sang the song in our hearts
 when we were exhausted
and felt like we could not go on.

And that is what I hope this post
and future posts will be for you:

A reminder that there is hope,
and there is healing for your broken heart.

Even though it may feel
like there are days you don't want to go on,
Keep Going.

Keep trusting though it hurts.

Keep hoping even when all seems lost.

Also please note: this post chronicles only the beginning of this story: the loss. Please join me later this week for the continuation of the journey. Join me as I share more from my journal entries on the process of healing, tested and refreshed faith, and hope for the future.

~ September ~

~ While on vacation I became suspicious that I was pregnant, all the signs were there. It was a glorious two weeks in the pool, playing in the sand, spending time with my family, and hubby & I dreaming about our new baby.

~ The night we got home I took 2 tests. Positive! I was thrilled, managed to keep the secret till the next morn. Told my handsome hubby and we spent the entire day planning and laughing like little kids over the good news. We could not have been more excited, our years of praying had been answered. He couldn't wait to tell our parents so we burst the secret that night. He can keep a secret, but not if it is a gift... he just has to tell!  {so sweet!}

How we had planned to announce the pregnancy -
photo taken on our vacation.
~ The next week and a half were full of making phone calls to relatives and me feeling awful with the normal pregnancy stuff.... and then I started bleeding. Then one night driving home from church I had a painful attack on my right ribcage. It was excruciating pain, and we were close to heading to emergency. But I was finally able to have some relief by morning and we decided to keep our scheduled Dr. apptointment instead of going in that day.

~ At our Dr. appointment later that week everything looked fine, the bleeding was just spotting; but just in case he asked me have external and internal ultrasound that day and have blood drawn too. Hormone levels looked fine and we were encouraged. But at the ultrasound we heard the unexpected: there was no baby in sight. The news knocked the wind out of us. How could this happen?

~ Dr. later explained that it was either a 2 week pregnancy that was too tiny to show {and we had gotten pregnant later than thought} or an ectopic pregnancy. We were asked to wait 3 days, have more blood tests and then come back...

~ Three days turned into 6 days of agonizing wait. By then people from our church knew to pray. There was a huge outpouring of love, support and prayers. Oh the prayers that were lifted in favor of this baby were amazing, we were humbled to know how loved and cared for we were.

~ Day 6 came. We went in for more bloodwork and ultrasound expecting everything to look normal. It was not. It was an 8 week ectopic pregnancy that had ruptured and had been bleeding profusely for several days. It was quite advanced in size and needed to be taken out - immediately. We left the Dr's office, went straight to the hospital. I was wheeled up to my room and was informed that I would be having surgery at around 9:30pm. We were all shocked, upset but through it all God gave us an deep sence of peace. I can't explain it, but I do know that through the agonizing sorrow and the overwhelming tears there was a peace rooted deep in my soul. I knew my Lord had me safe in the palm of His hands. I clung to the promises that His plans were greater than mine.

~ Twenty minutes later my room was swarmed by nurses and the surgeon who told me that I was being bumped up to the 6:30 time slot and had to get ready and be wheeled downstairs NOW. It was hurry up, go downstairs and then the wait... a long wait. Getting IV's in me is not easy. I had to have more blood drawn and then off I went. I remember waving goodbye while the tears silently rolled down my face and telling my family that I loved them as we rolled down the hall... then I remember hollering down the hall at my mom and mom-in-law to make sure that Hubby ate something. {oh the funny things that go through your mind at unexpected moments!}

~ Once in the 1 1/2 hour surgery took 3 1/2 hours. Our family was so worried, but it turns out a last minute emergency came in and I had to wait... at least I was asleep the whole time :)

~ Surgery went well. Dr drained a lot of blood and he had to spend quite a while cleaning it all out. He later said that is what caused the pain in my upper right shoulder/ribcage that night on the way home from church and thereafter. 

~ After an overnight stay, arms bruised from my fingers to the elbow, three incisions, and quite a bit of pain I found myself at home... babyless, heart broken and lost. Things changed so quickly in 2 weeks.

~ Yet God has been SO GOOD to me - to all of us. Sorrow comes, but His comfort is amazing. Our families have been so supportive and given of their time to care for me these last few weeks. Our church has loved on us, cried with us and we are so thankful for the extended family God has given us in our friends. It has been a time of joy and peace even in sorrow... and you know what? All Jason and I have ever wanted - no matter what profession our kids chose - was that they would be life long worshippers of Jesus. And through all of this we can say, we are the proud parents of two beautiful babies whose lifetime job is worshiping their Maker. What more could a parent want?

Thank you for continued prayers for: healing of heart and body and believing with us that God has another miracle ready for us in 2011!

May you be blessed.

All photos taken by yours truly.

Monday, November 14, 2011

10 Months in 10 Minutes

Last Friday we reconnected.  I opened blogger and quickly shared what was on my heart and how much I needed the creative outlet this blog is. I shared how I was hoping it would be like the best friend you had in middle school that you had not seen in years. Then you suddenly run into her one day and you pick up like no time has passed at all. You chat over coffee and realize that times may have changed but your friendship stayed lit deep in your heart.

So it only seemes to be appropriate to share with you what has been going on at the too Blessed to Stress nest for the last 10 months. But how on earth do I do that without borring you for the next few hours of your life with my ramblings.

What to do?

{Cue Dramatic Music}

That's where photos come in.

I decided to let the pictures do {most of} the talking.

So grab a cup of coffee and settle in to see 10 months of happenings in 10 minutes {give or take a few depending how fast you read and parouse photos!}

Trip to Arizona with Hubby and Mom in law to surprise Grandma for her 80th birthday. I'll have to do a seperate post on that wonderful trip some other time - the details of the surprise are priceless! {hence the lack of photos from Arizona, gotta save 'em for that post don't 'cha know!}

We toured an Indian village with homes built in the cliffs of the rocks, spent lots of time with family, stopped at California Adventure on the way home and all of this was going on while I had the worst chest-cold/flu-something-or-rather. That part was miserable! Hubby said he has never seen me so sick.

Can you believe people lived in those homes
carved way up in the hills?

Celebrated our anniversary - 8 years married to the love of my life!

View from our window of the lovely Bavarian town we stayed in.

Flowers from my love.

Unfortunatly at the end of April I sprained my ankle pretty severly. It was black and blue from my toes up to my knee. Miserable pain. I will spare you the photos of my puffed up, larger than life, bruised ankle/leg - not a pretty sight.

Hubby's birthday - which involved an out door hot dog roast, wonderful friends, and a rousing game of Pin the Tail on the Donkey. All ages played and it was a hoot!

Garden was in full swing. I said I didn't really want to have any blueberry bushes since they could take up too much room... hubby gave me that look... the big green eyes... sly smile...the look I can't resist... the one that melts my heart... the look that made us end up with not 1, not 2 but {brace yourself} 7 blueberries! And a trellised raspberry.... And 2 thorneless blackberries... And a Kiwi. {Don't even get me started on the Kiwi}

What can I say...
I'm a pushover when it comes to those handsome green eyes.

Blueberries, tomatoes, snow peas, sugar snap peas,
 potatoes and one ear of corn we just had to open and take peek at.


Cheching on the progress of the corn.

Home projects, lots of gardening and sunbathing for the pup. My oh my how she enjoys the outdoors!

Handing blueberries through the kitchen window.
Love it!

August {into September}
Fall harvest from the garden included our first ever patty pan squash and a bowl full of corn.

The last of the tomatoes, potatoes, corn,
the only survivors of the great carrot massacre of 2011...
Ask the pup about that one.

The smallest ear of corn I have ever seen!
It was still delicious.

Fabulous trip to Mexico with hubby and my parents. It was 2 glorious weeks of sun, sandcastles, ocean, pool, memories, laughs, water games, sunscreen... well you get the idea. All the wonderful things that a family vacation entails.

Turtles were coming up almost every night to lay their eggs!

View from our room.

Iguana on the way to breakfast.

Thank you so much for letting me share all our adventures with you!

View from back door.

Now it's your turn.
What have you been up to these last 10 months?
I'd love to hear all about your adventures too!

All photos taken by yours truly and my hubby.

PS You might have noticed I skipped October and Novemeber.The last week of September was a tough one. It brought about lots of change for us and I will share all about it tomorrow.

Friday, November 11, 2011

How do I do it?

Back to blogging... and it feels wonderful. This year has been a tough - one both physically and emotionally. I needed to take a break. But now I need to come back. Yep, need.

I need to read your wonderful blogs, be inspired by your beautiful homes and encouraged by the daily happenings of your life. It blessed my heart and I need this kind of interaction.

need to share my creative side, my moments of DIY inspiration at midnight, and I need to know I'm not the only one that gets the urge to spray paint at 11:59pm.

I need to share what has been on my heart and what God has been showing me through some difficult times.

I need you back in my life.

But here is the big question:

How do I come back after a 10 month hiatus?

Do I have to have a big whoopti-doo, giveaway, announcement or do I slip in quietly hoping no one will notice the awkward crickets chirping in the background?

Here's what I'm hoping:

I'm hoping it will be like the best friend you had in middle school that you have not seen in years. Then you suddenly run into her one day and you pick up like no time has passed at all. You chat over coffee  and realize that times may have changed but your friendship stayed lit deep in your heart.

Let's pick up where we left off...
Fill in the gaps from when we were apart...
And set out to make new memories.

Does that sound good to you?
I know I'm looking forward to it.

All photos taken by yours truly.